February 2021 – Keeping up with Hillfield Animal Home

At last it looks like things are looking up and we may see some sort of normality come the summer! We can’t wait to welcome back our wonderful volunteers and see you all on our fundraising events. The past year has put a huge dent in our funds so we are still relying heavily on your generous donations. Any donation you can give, no matter how big or small, is massively appreciated.

Valentines Weekend 

Pets at Home Burton carried out another event for us this past month which focused on spreading love on valentines day to all of the animals who currently have no family. 
Every penny that was donated was distributed to all of the RSPCA centres that Pets at Home support but we especially thank the Burton Pets at Home store as they focus on helping our branch and we are so grateful.
As well as this, we were invited to a Facebook Live event on 12th February where Support adoption for pets (a registered charity established by Pets at Home) had a special surprise for us. 
Our admin supervisor attended this online and it was announced that we would receive a bonus surprise of £2000! This was very unexpected and we were over the moon! 
Thank you to all of you that donate towards these events that Pets at Home carry out throughout the year as, without you, this would not be possible. 

Fifi

Continuing the great news, we have a lovely story about a stray cat for you below!

A cat was reported to us at the beginning of February as a stray that had been hanging around for a while. We managed to catch her and bring her in and once she was here we noticed she was actually on our lost and found register as missing from July 2020!

Luckily she was microchipped as well so we immediately contacted the owner and she was absolutely thrilled. The owner could not believe that she was alive and well after all of this time.

Fifi the cat has now been picked up by her owner and has the happy ending she deserves. The second photo of her below is her once she got back home and we have also been told she has reunited with her loving sister who missed her very much. 

Please always keep your pet’s microchip details up to date, it is so important as you never know if you will be in the position of losing them.

Check out some of our adoption stories below from the past month!

Chanock

Gorgeous boy Chanock came to us on 21st January after his owner sadly wasn’t giving him what he needed and couldn’t cope. Due to his past, we expected him to have a few behavioural issues but we couldn’t have been more wrong. Chanock was an absolute pleasure from day one and was always such a good boy. He is 5 and a half years old and is very well mannered and friendly with everyone he meets. Once he had his vet checks and neutering, we set to look for his new home and it didn’t take long at all.

He captured the hearts of a loving family and was adopted on 6th February.

Once again, he settled very quickly and it’s like he has always been there. His lovely new owners have been brilliant and sent us lots of photos of him, we miss him a lot so this is really nice to see. Below is an update that they also sent us:

“Chanock is so affectionate and loves lots of cuddles and a good brushing. He has settled in very quickly in his new home. He likes to sleep on our bed at night but if he gets too warm you will find him downstairs on the cuddler settee.  He likes going for walks over the field and loves to say hello to other dogs and give them a good sniff.

 He has a new toy ” Miss Strawberry” he is so gentle with her bless him. So happy we adopted him as he is a smashing dog.”

Florentine

Last month we featured a cat called Biscuit and this month we have a story about one of her kittens for you to read!
Little Florentine was born at our centre on the 21st September 2020, along with her three brothers. They were healthy kittens and their mum did a fantastic job at raising them for 9 weeks. 
All was going well until we sadly had a ringworm outbreak at the centre and these babies caught it just as they would have been ready to leave the nest. 

Ringworm is a fungal skin infection which presents with hair loss and scabby skin. It can be treated but sadly it can take a while for the spores to go. Our staff were amazing with the treatment and always wearing protective gear but sadly the ringworm just was not going away. We had to change their treatment after a couple of months and this started to work, yay!

One of her brothers got the all clear so he was adopted immediately so that there wasn’t a risk of him being re-infected. Then in mid-January the remaining three kittens were re-tested and unfortunately Florentine still had ringworm on her nose. Her brothers were all clear so we had to reluctantly separate them from her.

Florentine is incredibly social with people and other animals so having her brothers away from her and spending a couple of nights alone really upset her and she broke our hearts with her cries. We couldn’t see her like this so we made the decision to put her brothers back in with her and she was back to her cheeky and happy self straight away! This meant that the boys would have to stay with us until she had the all clear but in the long run, we knew it would all be worth it.

On 16th February we had the fantastic news that Florentine was finally ringworm free! We were over the moon because this meant that these three babies could now go to their new families after waiting a whopping five months. 

Florentine was adopted on 17th February and then her brothers went the following day. They are all settling in really well. Flo’s new family sent us an update below:

“Florentine seems to be settling in well and a bit of a night owl for her playfulness. She has explored the downstairs of the house but seems weary of going upstairs for now. She is eating well and using the litter try quite well if with a bit of litter getting kicked around the floor afterwards and is finding a new hiding place for us to find her from in the morning every night.

The kids love her lots already and she seems to be fitting it with us very well.”

Myla

Myla arrived with us on 4th December 2020 and spent 52 days altogether here with us. She came to us with two babies but they were soon split from her as they were old enough and Myla is a very independent lady who needs her space. Her previous owner was moving house and couldn’t take her with them unfortunately. We sadly see this very often so it is always important to consider your animals when moving house and to do everything you can to take them with you as they are a part of your family.

Myla is a really funny bunny with lots of personality, she loves her toys and to be hand fed so we knew she would make someone a lovely little companion.

On 25th January she was re-homed and has never been happier. We have received lots of pictures of Myla making herself at home and she is now mainly a house bunny so she has all the space and attention she could wish for. We couldn’t have asked for a better home for this little girl and she even has two canine friends who she is getting on with wonderfully, especially Bertie!

“Myla is doing amazing and is absolutely adorable. She has become a bit of a house bunny as she spends so much time with me while I study and she appears to love it. Myla loves Bertie’s company, they have become good friends!”

This month we would like to share some of our not so happy stories so that you can get an insight of what we deal with every day..

Poor Oscar is on his third sting with us since September 2020, after being returned again due to his (sometimes) feisty nature. We’re so sad to see Oscar back in the cattery and we are making it our mission to find his final, 100%, no giving up on him FOREVER home! Oscar is a complex character and certainly not for the faint hearted, but given time and space he will show you what a great guy he can be.

Oscar is outgoing, adventurous and friendly… yes, FRIENDLY! Oscar is not a grumpy guy through and through and actually 98% of the time he is a chatty good natured boy who is happy to potter about doing his own thing and pop back over for a meow and quick head bump to let you know he’s not forgotten you.

However, Oscar has shown an unpredictable side and has at times been very aggressive. In time we hope these grumpy moments will become fewer and far between. We very much take the approach of letting him be independent and don’t put pressure on him for cuddles and we think this has definitely helped

In January we published an appeal on our Facebook page and very quickly Oscar became a global celebrity. You may think we are exaggerating but we did actually receive over 100 applications for him, some being from the US, Australia, Germany and Mexico!

This was fantastic but unfortunately we do not re-home outside of the UK and due to the lockdown we have to keep strictly within an hour of our centre, so Australia was definitely out of the question!

We did have a few applications who were close enough but we found that these people either had children or other animals and sadly Oscar would not like this at all. We have to put Oscar first so we had to decline almost every kind person that came forward to help this little guy.

A few people came to visit him but after thinking about it properly they decided he was too much and therefore, Oscar is still here waiting for his final home. To find out more, click the button below:

Appeal to trace person who dumped elderly neglected dog

In February 2021, an investigation was launched by the RSPCA after an elderly dog was found abandoned in the garden of an empty shop.
The elderly female German Shepherd-cross dog was found outside an empty premises in Waterloo Street, Burton on Trent, by a workman who had just finished a job on the property. He could see the dog was in poor condition and had no food or water so brought her to us on Monday 1st February.

The dog, who was named Shadow, was found to be clearly underweight, her fur was filthy and she had an untreated and infected tumour the size of a golf ball on her neck and a mass near her groin.

She was put on antibiotics and tests were carried out to see if she required an operation to remove the growths.

Shadow was not microchipped so we were unable to find any contact details of an owner so the Inspector who took over her case then launched an appeal for information to trace her owner.

The Inspector said: “It seems poor Shadow was abandoned by her owner probably because she was elderly and they could see needed treatment for a tumour. It is heart-breaking that someone would choose to do this to their pet when they are clearly in need of help. It is clear her needs were not being met and we are grateful for the member of the public who found her. At this stage I don’t know if Shadow was dumped in the garden of the property or if she was abandoned nearby and wandered in – but the garden was enclosed. There is never any excuse to dump an animal when there are plenty of charities out there to help those struggling. I am hoping someone will recognise the dog and may be able to identify who owned her. I would also like to find out who the previous tenants were in the property before it was vacated as they may be able to help with my enquiries.”

We were bathing her neck tumour regularly as it had been bleeding and was in quite a mess, but she put up with everything like a star and was so well natured. Unfortunately since arriving, she suffered terrible with diarrhoea and not eating and no treatment seemed to be working. She went to our vets a few times and it was picked up that she was absolutely riddled with cancer and as well as the visible tumours, a mass was detected in her abdomen and suspected to have also spread to her lungs which was causing her to struggle with breathing. 
With the vets advise, we sadly had to make the decision to put this poor girl to sleep as it was the kindest thing for her and her cancer was causing her a lot of pain. 

We are sharing Shadows story because we think it is important for people to be aware that, unfortunately, situations like hers happen every single day. 
If you ever suspect that an animal is being mistreated, please don’t hesitate to contact the National RSPCA on 0300 1234 999 so that it can be looked into.