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Fundraiser launched for dog with ‘severe back deformity’
Herbert's deformity causes him difficulty with standing, laying down, walking and playing.
Herbert was rescued by RSPCA last month.

The Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA) has launched a fundraiser, after it rescued an eleven-month-old crossbreed with a ‘severe back deformity’.

Herbert will need high quality veterinary care, including specialist scans and treatments, to enable the team to plan for his recovery.

He was brought into Martlesham Animal Centre, run by the charity’s Suffolk Central branch, a few weeks ago suffering from significant pain and discomfort.

His deformed back caused him difficulty with standing, laying down, walking and playing. He was also malnourished when he arrived, with little muscle covering his body and a severe curve to his spine.

The RSPCA Central Suffolk team has already worked hard to improve Herbert’s prospects. He has been given necessary pain relief and gentle physio to aid with his back issues.

Herbert has already gained 3kg in just a week at the centre.

Kennel assistants have been working to build up his muscles and strength, but believe that he still has some way to go on his road to recovery. Herbert is now awaiting specialist scans and tests, which will inform his future treatment plans.

As the costs for Herbert’s treatments and scans continue to build, the team are now appealing for donations to support his recovery.

It has begun a fundraiser, Help for Herbert, which will contribute towards the costs of his future scans and treatment. The team’s current target is £1,500 for Herbert’s CT scan and advanced imaging.

The generous donations of RSPCA’s supporters means the fundraiser has already reached over £1,200.

The charity has seen an increase in pets that are requiring specialist treatment for a range of health problems. It believes that the cost of living crisis has made it particularly challenging for pet owners to afford necessary treatment for unexpected conditions.

Emma Thresh, senior kennel assistant at Martlesham Animal Centre, said: “Pets are a huge responsibility and they can be a big financial commitment.

“We’d urge pet owners to ensure they have insurance and keep up-to-date with routine veterinary check-ups and preventative treatments, such as flea and worming treatments, as this will be more affordable in the long-term.”

To donate to Herbert’s recovery, visit his fundraising page here.

Image © RSPCA

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Reporting service for dead wild birds updated

News Story 1
 The Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) has updated its online reporting service for dead wild birds.

The new version allows those reporting a dead bird to drop a pin on a map when reporting the location. It also includes a wider range of wild bird species groups to select from when describing the bird.

The online service, which helps APHA to monitor the spread of diseases such as avian influenza, can be accessed here

Click here for more...
News Shorts
NI chief vet urges bluetongue vigilance

Northern Ireland's chief veterinary officer (CVO) has urged farmers to be vigilant for signs of bluetongue, after the Animal and Plant Health Agency warned there was a very high probability of further cases in Great Britain.

There have been 126 confirmed cases of bluetongue virus serotype 3 in England since November 2023, with no cases reported in Northern Ireland. The movement of live ruminants from Great Britain to Northern Ireland is currently suspended.

According to the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA), the virus is most likely to enter Northern Ireland through infected animals or germplasm (semen or ova) being imported.

Brian Dooher, Northern Ireland's CVO, said: "Surveillance for this disease within Northern Ireland has been increased to assist with detection at the earliest opportunity which will facilitate more effective control measures."

Farmers should report any suspicions of the disease to their private veterinary practitioner, the DAERA Helpline on 0300 200 7840 or their local DAERA Direct Veterinary Office.