Dogs Trust Ballymena is currently caring for four dogs who have been found abandoned.
The four - whose heart-breaking stories include being tied to a fence and being left by the side of the road - are now ready to find their forever homes thanks to some much-needed TLC by the team at the rehoming centre on Teeshan Road.
The first dog to arrive at the centre was 11-year-old Spaniel Grace, found by a member of the public at the side of the road. She was taken to the vet immediately, but after an owner didn’t come forward, she was brought to Dogs Trust.
Two weeks ago, another Spaniel - aged eight and nicknamed Bliss by the team - was found tied to a fence not far from the rehoming centre. Like Grace, the Spaniel has not been microchipped, which has been a legal requirement for all dogs since 2016 and the easiest way to identify a dog who has become separated from their owner.
Shockingly just one week later, a Cairn Terrier - less than a year old, was found by a rehoming centre staff member at the very same spot where Bliss was left. Terrier Rizzo was lucky to be found as she is quite small and it would have been easy to miss her in the long grass.
The most recent addition to the ranks of abandoned pooches is Sally, an eight-year-old Collie cross, who was found as a stray by a member of the public and brought to the rehoming centre.
Oonagh Philips, Rehoming Centre Manager said: “We want to remind anyone who no longer feels that they can care for their dog to contact their local rescue organisation for support. When a dog is abandoned on the road side, it not only puts them in danger, but also drivers. We are so thankful that all four of these dogs were found when they were.
“Grace and Bliss were very shaken up by their ordeal when they came into our care and it took them a couple of days to build trust around people again. We could tell Rizzo hadn’t eaten in a while, which could have resulted in a deterioration of her physical health. Sally is incredibly sweet natured, and just like the others, will make a wonderful addition to the right home.
“We are not sure why there has been a recent influx in dogs being abandoned. We always remind people that ‘A Dog is for Life®’ but we understand that life happens, and places like Dogs Trust are there to support any dog owner who experiences a bump in the road and needs our help. Sometimes the most responsible thing we can do as a dog owner is admit that we aren’t coping with our pets, but it is important to ensure they are kept safe and not left to fend for themselves.”
If you are interested in adopting a dog please get in touch with the team at Dogs Trust Ballymena on 02825447227 or visit www.dogstrust.org.uk/our-centres/ballymena