- We will restrict public access to rescue and rehoming centres – but will continue to rehome through appointments
- Educational visits to schools and centres put on hold – with online and print learning for schools and parents at home on the way
- We're taking steps to make sure we can continue to help animals and people as virus spreads
We've announced a raft of measures to ensure we can continue to rescue animals and support pet owners in local communities in the face of coronavirus.
As of Wednesday 18 March, our nine animal rescue and rehoming centres will be closed to the public unless with a pre-arranged appointment. In 2019, we attended to over 220 incidents per day and cared for over 20,000 animals across its rescue centres and wildlife hospital. We will also temporarily stop accepting used blankets or towels as donations.
Chief executive Kirsteen Campbell said: “The Scottish SPCA provides a vital service to animals in need, to vulnerable pet owners and to schools and communities across Scotland. As the coronavirus spreads, we have a duty of care to the public, our staff and the animals we help to ensure we can continue to do our job without putting anyone at risk.”
“These precautionary measures are designed to make sure our dedicated animal welfare experts can still be in centres to look after animals and our committed inspectors and animal rescue officers can still be on-hand to rescue animals. We will still be there whenever people, pets and wildlife need us.”
“We have been monitoring the spread of the virus for some time and have already taken steps to ensure all of our centres are well stocked in terms of specialised food and veterinary supplies.”
Our education team will not visit schools until further notice. We are developing a suite of materials which parents can use if they are home-schooling their children.
Kirsteen said: “We are doing the right thing by cancelling school bookings, but we don’t want children to go without the opportunity to learn about animal welfare in the weeks ahead. We are in contact with head teachers across the country to help get materials related to animal welfare education to households.”
“I would say to anyone who has concerns about the impact of coronavirus on how they can care for their pet – give our animal helpline a call. We will give you all the advice and support we can. As Scotland’s animal welfare charity, we are here to support pet owners and make sure they can maintain the strong bond with the animals in their lives during this difficult period.”