There was a 22 per cent increase of cruelty reports in Hertfordshire made to the RSPCA last year, the animal charity has revealed.

Latest figures from the RSPCA show an alarming increase in intentional cruelty against animals, including 194 reports in Hertfordshire last year - an increase of 22 per cent compared to 2021.

The number of reports made nationally to the charity’s cruelty line about intentional harm to animals - including beatings, mutilations such as ear cropping, poisonings and even killings - has increased by 14 per cent, with 12,582 reported last year compared to 11,012 reports in 2021.

As a result, the animal charity is bracing for one of its busiest summers this year, as it expects another summer of suffering, with more people reporting cruelty to animals from July to September.


The charity has launched its Cancel Out Cruelty campaign, to raise funds to help its frontline rescue teams continue to save animals from cruelty and abuse and to raise awareness about how to stop cruelty to animals for good.

Alex Coghlan, RSPCA's acting chief inspector for Hertfordshire, said: "Right now, animal cruelty is happening in England and Wales on a massive scale and rising, and sadly the number of cruelty incidents in Hertfordshire are also too high.  

"It is heartbreaking that we are seeing figures which show animal cruelty is on the rise.

"While we don’t know for certain why there has been an increase in reports of cruelty, the cost-of-living crisis and the post-pandemic world we live in has created an animal welfare crisis, with more people getting pets with potentially less time and money to care for them.

"Each year, these reports of cruelty reach its terrible annual peak in the summer months, when nationally we receive a report of an animal being beaten on average every hour of every day.


"The cost-of-living crisis also means the cost of rescuing animals is at an all-time high and our vital services are stretched to the limit.

"Together, we believe we can and will cancel out cruelty to animals by replacing violence with kindness. We are urging people to donate to our Cancel Out Cruelty campaign. Every donation will help animals."

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