DOG AND CAT ACCOMMODATION
All outdoor kennels have individual heat lamps in the bed side of the kennel. Most outdoor kennels have supplementary piped hot water heating. All outdoor kennels have lighting along the aisles. Ventilation is maintained at all times and draughts avoided
Cleaning is carried out twice per day as a routine clean to all kennels plus a circulating staff member will shovel any solid matter in between.
The routine for morning cleans is very rigid and incorporates the use of approved virucides (Virkon) at all times and requires the staff to dip their footwear in a Virkon solution between kennels to prevent cross infection.
Kennels are kept dry unless they are being soaked in Virkon post infection. In very hot weather some kennels are sprayed with water to reduce the ambient temperature
All cat cages have litter trays with appropriate litter which is changed daily or more often as required.
Both cats and dogs have blankets or material for bedding. This bedding is never washed and subsequently re-used with a different animal. Any bedding that is washed always goes back to the same animal.
Feeding routines are as appropriate for the cat or dog in question. The main diets of choice are
Chappie complete. Chappie tinned, Winalot tinned and Pedigree Lamb and Veg complete for dogs and Kit-e-Kat for the cats. Beyond these we regularly have animals on prescription diets or boiled rice and chicken.
All feeding dishes are thoroughly cleaned and rinsed in a Virkon solution after every meal. If a cat or dog has a communicable disease the dishes used will be kept for that animal only until it is completely recovered.
All staff are trained to recognise the signs and symptoms of the main diseases that would affect the animals. Additionally there are three formal inspections per day. These are carried out by the duty manager at 8.30 a.m. and 5.30 p.m. plus the kennel staff who carry out the morning cleans are required to thoroughly check the occupant/s of the kennels/cages that they clean. On completion of these checks the relevant person must sign that the check is complete.
We use two different veterinary practices in rotation. At any one time one practice is visiting the Shelter to carry out the surgeries on Monday, Wednesday and Friday and the other practice is carrying out the neuters and routine operations on the animals that have completed their initial 7 days. The proprietor of one of these practices is also a committee member and advises us on veterinary matters.
If a dog displays behaviour inappropriate to being rehomed this is not considered automatic grounds for euthanasia. We would first monitor the dog for a while to make a proper assessment and then if necessary carry out the appropriate retraining. On occasion we seek outside help from a behaviourist but generally find that we can deal with most situations given time. Very occasionally we admit a dog that due to circumstances in its past or a present mental instability we cannot retrain. If this is the case, after trying all that they can the managers will put the details to the appropriate committee member/s for a decision. This decision could include the possibility of euthanasia. During the last few years these cases have been only single figures per year.
Wherever possible we try to re-unite a lost dog with its owner without the need for accommodating the dog in a kennel. This is achieved mainly through extensive use of our comprehensive lost and found system in both computerised and hard copy systems.