MADRA Press Release
MADRA calls on City Councillors to support their proposal to reduce the number of dogs being put-to-sleep in Galway
Local dog rescue charity MADRA will present a proposal to Galway City Council at their upcoming meeting at City Hall on Monday. The charity is proposing a solution to the high euthanasia rates at the Ballybane Road facility.
MADRA is looking to establish a formal arrangement with Galway City Council, whereby they will endeavour to work closely with the City Council and its representatives to ensure that no healthy dog is put-to-sleep in the city.
Over a three year period from 2011 – 2013, Galway City Council had 580 dogs in their care; either surrendered by their owners, found straying, or seized by the Dog Warden. Of the 580 dogs, 324 were put to sleep, representing 56% of all of the dogs that came into their care. These figures do not include greyhounds surrendered to the pound.
2014 figures have not yet been published, however MADRA records show that 25 dogs were rescued from dog pound facility by the charity during a trial working period. Due to issues with capacity at the MADRA kennels in Camus, this arrangement was temporarily suspended when the charity experienced an unprecedented number of dogs coming into their care late last year, forcing them to close their doors for the month of November.
Speaking about the proposal, MADRA Chairperson Edel Comerford commented: “We are confident that we will have the support of our city’s elected representatives. The number of dogs dying in a progressive city like Galway is astonishing. There is a better way.
“While we understand that budgets are limited, we know that our Councillors will appreciate the importance of allocating resources to deal with this dog welfare issue.
“We have had excellent success in helping Galway County Council and Mayo County Council to reduce their euthanasia rates to as low as 11 per cent, and we want to do the same with Galway City Council.
“Our resources are limited but our desire to find a viable solution to this problem is unrivalled, and we thank Councillor Pearce Flannery for helping us to bring this issue to the direct attention of Galway City Council representatives”, she added.
The proposal being presented by MADRA focusses on saving dogs from being put-to-sleep, but the charity has also been in talks with representatives of the Environment section of the council to discuss other aspects of dog control in the city, and the proposed improvement works to the Ballybane Road facility.
Speaking about the improvement works, Edel Comerford stated: “We are happy to know that a much-needed overhaul of the facilities is planned for the coming months, but the improvements must be complemented by a plan to reduce euthanasia rates. Upgrading the facility to make a dog more comfortable for their last five days is not enough”.
The charity has asked for the support of Councillors to sanction the financial resources required to help them to save dogs from the pound.
Last year MADRA rescued 777 dogs with the majority coming from the pounds in Co. Galway and Co. Mayo. The charity’s running costs were in excess of €160,000, and the average length of stay per dog is 40 days. The estimated cost to MADRA per dog is €265, not including injured or pregnant dogs.
The expenditure figures provided by Galway City Council to the Department of the Environment show that expenditure on dog control in 2013 was close to €68,000 for the 190 dogs (including greyhounds) seized, and to run the dog control service.
Notes to the Editor:
Five highest put-to-sleep percentages in Ireland (2013)
1.Co. Cork 67%
2.North Tipperary 56%
3.Limerick City 53%
5.Galway City 47% & Laois 47 %
National Figures (2013)
•15,481 dogs seized or surrendered by councils
•3,516 dogs put-to-sleep
•6,013 sent to rescue groups
•5,867 rehomed directly or reclaimed by owners
Dog Control figures quoted in this release were taken from http://www.environ.ie/en/Publications/LocalGovernment/DogControl/