PEOPLE in Helensburgh are being asked not to forget animals during the coronavirus pandemic as the Scottish SPCA’s local rescue centre remains as busy as ever.

Since the nation entered lockdown on March 23, the Scottish SCPA has fielded more than 11,000 calls to its animal helpline and responded to around 4,400 reports of animals in urgent need.

Their Milton centre, on the A82 at the east end of Dumbarton, requires more than £30,000 every month to care for the animals.

But with the cancellation of fund-raising events across the country and almost 1,500 members stopping their monthly donations, the charity is set to lose up to 20 per cent of its income this year.

The intervention of the welfare charity can be the difference between life or death for animals such as Sirren – a cat who was brought to the local centre after being found near a cardboard box by a member of the public.

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The box had air holes so inspectors suspect she was abandoned inside it. The passer-by took her home and called the Scottish SPCA animal helpline.

The charity said Sirren was petrified but was in a good condition. She had been neutered, suggesting she was a loved pet, at some point.

Kim Mackrell, assistant manager at the charity’s Dunbartonshire centre, said: “Our frontline teams, whether on our helpline, out on the road, or in a rescue centre, are still here fighting to rescue and care for every single animal we can.

“We know Scotland is a nation of animal lovers and now, more than ever, we ask that they don’t forget the animals.

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“Our aim is to be here as long as animals and people need us, giving animals like Sirren a second chance in life.

“Every single person who signs up to support us with a monthly donation will make a difference and will save lives.”

All the charity’s rescue centres, including the Milton facility, have been closed to the public since March 18, except for people who have a pre-arranged appointment.

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