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RSPCA concerns

Discussion in 'Dog Chat' started by BurnedToast, May 13, 2019.


  1. BurnedToast

    BurnedToast PetForums Newbie

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    Hi all,

    Used to post her quite often a few years back but lost my account, thought it'd be a good place to ask for advice on behalf of my family, who are losing their minds over this.

    Long story short-ish - almost two weeks ago someone pointed the finger at my disabled uncle for not taking care of his dog. It's a long haired breed and likes to give a paw....The person who reported to the RSPCA was affronted by the fact that the dog had a series of small mats on the fur of their feet where mud had dried and hardened.....

    At that time we'd had a lot of wet weather and these mats apparently seem to accumulate very quickly during wet weather. My uncle explained this to the visitor, and admitted the usually daily groom had gone by the wayside for over a week as my cousin (the one who is physically able to groom the dog) had been seriously ill and unable to do much of anything beyond lie in bed battling a fever. Visitor didn't seem to accept this, having never owned a dog and having a general attitude about disabled people owning pets they were apparently suspicious and adamant the dog was neglected in some way.

    Anyway, nothing more was thought of it, but on Friday the RSPCA knock my uncle/cousin's door....saying they've had a complaint raised about a dog who's fur is matted.

    My cousin knows his rights regarding the RSPCA powers to enter etc and has heard horror stories from friends and neighbours, newspapers and the like. He refused to allow the RSPCA guy access or to see the dog, apparently he seemed friendly and polite despite this and my cousin getting a bit defensive. Asked a few questions and offered help, which my cousin turned down. (As the small paw mats are now completely gone since my cousin has recovered enough to catch up on task like that now)

    Anyways, cousin explained the situation and said that he had a gut feeling this was coming after uncle's visitor copped an attitude over the dog giving them a paw. RSPCA person apparently seemed to accept the explanation, asked if any help was needed (cousin declined) and left without seeing the dog or probing any further.

    However, both my cousin and my uncle are now spinning out thinking that this is only the tip of the iceberg. The horror stories they've heard have them anticipating the RSPCA camped outside their house watching for him coming and going with/without the dog, getting over the back garden etc looking for any excuse to enter the house and potentially take the dog.

    This is also having a huge impact on my uncle especially, who is disabled and the dog is literally the only reason he'll get out of bed most days. He worships it, has raised him from six weeks old and nursed him back to health (six hours a day physical therapy) after an horrific car accident five years ago almost rendered the dog permanently paralyzed. At the annual vet checkup at the end of January, the vet apparently praised my cousin for what good condition the dog was in and how he didn't look anything close to his age.

    Needless to say, my uncle would be devastated if something were to happen to his dog, especially over something so ridiculous in the bigger picture. He and my cousin are very worried the RSPCA will be looking for another reason to call now, and potentially making an excuse to come down hard on them to get access to the dog....

    Anyway, my question is - does anyone know what happens now with the RSPCA in a situation like this?

    Since they didn't get to see the dog, will they continue to monitor the address in any way, shape or form? For example, are they allowed to set up some kind of surveillance/monitoring for something as silly as a report of "matted fur"? Or will they just sign off on it but keep a record just in case of future complaints?

    Has anyone had a similar experience and lived to tell the tale? How likely is it that they will return in the (near) future?

    If they come back, my cousin is adamant he won't let them in. However, while I know this is an advised course of action with a lot of pet owner groups, I think it makes him/my uncle look guilty of something....

    Fortunately, I know he's not, as the dog is the best cared for out of the three of them, it's a family joke how well the dog fed and how he's number one priority for my uncle at all times. I am very concerned for what this is doing to my uncle's mental health, as the mere suggestion that the dog might be taken is crushing him and would like to reassure him somehow, but obviously don't want to give false hope either.

    Any insight or advice would be a big help, thanks for reading!
     
    #1 BurnedToast, May 13, 2019
    Last edited: May 13, 2019
  2. Lurcherlad

    Lurcherlad PetForums VIP

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    Tbh if there really is no issue with the dog I’d forget about it.

    If the RSPCA ever did call again and insisted on seeing the dog (understandable imo for the animal’s sake because not all owners will be telling the truth sadly) they will be able to see clearly that the dog is fine.
     
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  3. Jamesgoeswalkies

    Jamesgoeswalkies PetForums VIP

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    They ought to - if this was a serious issue of abuse or malnurishment for example we wouldn't expect them to simply take the owners word that the dog is ok now and leave it at that. It may be that the RSPCA official was satisfied and has simply written it up in their report or it may be that you will get another call (in this case they can see the dog). If the dog is now in good condition and matt free and you are worried about any follow up situation, then it may be in your interest to contact the RSPCA and suggest that they come and see the dog or you bring the dog to them? However I doubt for a moment they will conduct a surveillence operation.

    I'm not going to get into a debate as to the efficiency of the RSPCA becasue my local centre is excellent and I have no other experience of them personally. I hope you get this sorted though.

    J
     
  4. kittih

    kittih PetForums VIP

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    They wont keep surveillance of your uncle or the dog. They will have just made a note if anything crops up again.
    My neighbour once got reported to the RSPCA for leaving her dog outside in all weather with no water or shelter. She was most put out by a visit from the RSPCA but after explaining that her Border Collie loved being outdoors, could access the house whenever he wanted and had a big bowl of fresh water continuously available they went on their way more than satisfied.

    I appreciate that the advice is to not let them in but to be honest given they are now stressing about it probably simply showing the inspector all was good would have solved concerns all round. Though their response was perfectly reasonable.

    One option maybe would be to get the vet to write a dated letter stating the condition of the dog or else have a general check up appointment and ask for a copy of the notes made so if there are any other visits the information van be provided and will provide your uncle with some assurance or "proof".

    Really, they shouldn't worry but if that would help how peace if mind then the cost may be worth it.
     
  5. NFC slave

    NFC slave PetForums Senior

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    I had the same happen but my visit was from a very Bolshie female with the SSPCA. She refused to come into the house, after accusing me of ill treating my dogs and being told that was plain stupid she seemed to lose interest in the dogs and decided to find fault with the hens and ducks instead! She told me one of my runner ducks had a prolapse so I explained that it had an egg in the sack ready to lay and she was amazed! Anyway, she went off and that was the last I ever heard. There is somebody in my area who reports just about everybody in turn, cows are malnourished, horses neglected, sheep in bad condition etc. So far no problems have been found! Tell your uncle not to worry, they would have been back with the police if they were worried, they have to check when they receive a complaint but must get tired of being used for malicious reasons
     
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  6. Calvine

    Calvine PetForums VIP

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    Yes, it looks as tho' there is something to hide, even when there isn't. I'd get the dog groomed/bathed/clipped, whatever it takes, I'd also get a once-over from a vet so you can say ''He saw the vet last week for his annual check-up and he thinks he's in good shape . . . ''. If they come back and bring the police then the dog can be taken. There has to be a police officer present if they want to grab the dog.Get it sorted asap. Get the dog looking well-groomed and clean, make sure his sleeping quarters are clean, his bowls washed and clean water down. Good luck. Let us know how it goes??

    PS: Welcome back!
     
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  7. Jackie C

    Jackie C Cat slave

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    On their own, the RSPCA officer has literally no more power than the average person down the street. They certainly cannot enter your home without your permission. Some of them, according to some things I've read, can be intimidating and act like they have more power than they have. However, they can get the police if they are worried.
    Your cousin and uncle have nothing to be scared of, although I can understand their worry. The RSPCA may not even come again, but IF they do, they could ask them to wait outside whilst they bring the dog out, or simply let them in. The advise from above posters seems good.
     
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  8. Calvine

    Calvine PetForums VIP

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    It doesn't help, of course, that they have a uniform which is reminiscent of a police uniform . . . deliberately or otherwise.
     
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  9. Kittynanna

    Kittynanna PetForums Member

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    I have no experience of RSPCA, so had that happened to me......yes I would have been annoyed at a busybody visitor, but I would have let them in or brought the dog out, just to show them there was nothing to hide.
     
  10. Sarah1983

    Sarah1983 PetForums VIP

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    I'd have done the same to be honest. I've had quite a few people threaten to report me to the RSPCA over my "skin and bone" dog :rolleyes: I tell them to go ahead and if the RSPCA ever turn up they're welcome to meet Spen as far as I'm concerned. Don't understand why, if you've genuinely nothing to hide, there'd be any reason not to? End of the day, people call them because they're concerned about an animal, them coming out to check is simply them doing their job. I've no great love for the RSPCA but if they turn up here Spen would be over the moon to bring them a toy and have a fuss.
     
  11. Chatcat

    Chatcat PetForums Senior

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    The RSPCA are angels when it comes to serious cases of neglect and cruelty, but if they want to look at your dog it is taken as a personal affront. I would have done what the others suggest, ask him in, ply him with tea and cake, and produce my well-looked after and happy dog. I wouldn't think he would even have been interested if the dog did have matted paws, goodness, there is a lot more cruelty in the world than that. And you would not now be a bag of nerves.

    Call the RSPCA and get him to come and see if you have nothing to hide.
     
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  12. Calvine

    Calvine PetForums VIP

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    You would hope so, but apparently not always; RSPCA maintain that the reason they cannot get out to cruelty cases is that they have a lot of hoax calls . . . people who don't get on with a neighbour etc.
     
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  13. Taz69

    Taz69 PetForums Newbie

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    I ha the RSPCA round after starting a course at college as I left my dog in the back yard whilst I was out.
    Basically the RSPCA officer didn't get through her we have had reports your dog is starved and mistreated speal before she saw Megan over my shoulder; well fed and eager to say hello when I heared her mutter that obviously her report wasn't right as I invited her in.

    Actually I was only too happy to show Megan's living conditions and took the officer through the house and showed her my back yard and the simple doggie den in my garden shed. Her doggie den was simply some old carpets and carpet lining over the space at the back of the shed between the landlord's cooker and washing machine . It may not have looked much but the RSPCA officer was more than happy to see Megan had shelter, water and space to roam whilst I was out at college.

    I actually had a smug chat with one of my neighbours mentioning I'd been 'RSPCA approved' knowing it would get back to the person who reported me because I chose to leave a large dog with a choice of fresh air or a doggie den when I was out during the day.
     
  14. Blitz

    Blitz PetForums VIP

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    I cant quite see the problem in letting the rspca officer in. Most of the calls they go to will be similar. Someone who is not very au fait with animal care reporting something daft, or totally hoax or malicious calls. I am surprised they even bothered to turn up to have a look. I, and most of my horse owning friends, have been reported for horse neglect at some time. I have even had an inspector with a policeman in tow. I would far rather they followed up every call rather than missing the ones they could help with. I have always invited the officer in for a cup of tea. I cant actually ever remember them looking at the animals! My neighbour was reported for letting her horses in a muddy field in winter! I was reported for letting my rugged and stabled horses out for a few hours in a field. Then again the very abused horses down the road were reported and the officer could not even be bothered to go and look. Eventually a neighbour snapped and called the vet when the owner was out and the vet shot 2 of them on the spot.
     
  15. Sarah1983

    Sarah1983 PetForums VIP

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    I know they get the hoax calls but my point is that they really can't win. If they don't investigate they're slammed, if they do investigate people get all bent out of shape and defensive because the RSPCA have turned up after a report of cruelty or neglect. Far better that they show up and it be nothing than them not bother and it be something. Shame nothing gets done about those making the malicious reports as they're a complete waste of time and money that could be better spent on genuine cases.
     
  16. Calvine

    Calvine PetForums VIP

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    Very true: unfortunately, horses are easy targets as they are normally kept miles away from home and it is easy for them to climb over a gate and snout around. A ''No Trespassing'' sign won't keep them out, nor will security cameras. Keep a pony off the grazing with just hay and water because it's laminitic and it gets reported . . . leave it grazing so it ends up crippled and that will be reported too. Horse owners cannot win!
     
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  17. Chatcat

    Chatcat PetForums Senior

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    Somebody reported a local border collie to the RSPCA because it 'lived' under a big American RV, on a Caravan Club site. Of course, it wasn't living there. It chose to sit in the shade of the RV in the summer because the owners of the RV spoilt it rotten and kept feeding it. People walking past see just one thing and act on that tiny snapshot of information, instead of waiting to see the whole truth. The dog was utterly spoiled by anyone who came into contact with it and it lived a long and happy life.
     
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  18. Bugsys grandma

    Bugsys grandma PetForums VIP

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    I've had a visit from the RSPCA, I'm pretty sure I know who reported me, someone I'd refused to do something for.
    They had been given a whole big story that my dog was thin, in a bad state, never taken out, that my garden was covered in dog mess, and my dog abused and scared.
    I just asked the officer in, he saw Woody who came bounding in from the back garden, where we'd been gardening, with my gardening gloves in his mouth. The officer bent down and stroked Woody, then turned round walked back to the front door, saying sorry there's clearly no reason for me to be here, then muttered something about bloody time wasters.
    He couldn't tell me who had reported me, obviously, but he did say that if they'd left their details and it wasn't an anonymous call, he would make absolutely certain they knew that there was no case to answer at all. He was actually really cross.
     
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  19. Calvine

    Calvine PetForums VIP

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    I understood they don't accept calls from people who refuse to give their names, not sure how true that is.
     
  20. Bugsys grandma

    Bugsys grandma PetForums VIP

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    They shouldn't accept calls from people who won't give their names in my opinion .
    If I was genuinely concerned about an animal, I'd have no problem giving them my details.
    That said though, I do understand that some people may be scared to give their names for fear of the accused finding out who had reported them and there being some trouble. There are some very unpleasant people out there.
     
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