I took a cat, Val, to the vets last week. He was so far downhill he died the next day. Reported/rescued even one day earlier he’d have survived. He hung out at Supervalu carpark in Dunmanway. He was known by the staff and the customers. Someone put him on a car bonnet in the sun when he could hardly move. Someone else, probably the car owner, removed him and he couldn’t be found when the people who first spotted him went back for him. They finally found him the next day.

He had a bad tooth. So he couldn’t eat. How long did people walk past him before he got so weak he couldn’t hunt, couldn’t drink? How many individuals walked past him, didn’t help him? He died of toothache and indifference.

The people who walked past him will never be prosecuted for animal cruelty and neglect. Even though ignoring an animal in need is, without a doubt, neglect. And they didn’t even try. Someone else’ll deal with him. Or he’s nothing that matters anyway.

If everyone in Ireland rescued one animal, rescue centres wouldn’t get inundated, be skint and unable to cope, the Irish Equine Crisis wouldn’t have happened. What stops people from reaching out? I’ll never understand.

Big thanks go to the caring family that picked Val up and took him to Brookpark Vets in Dunmanway. And to the staff of Brookpark who gave him the best care. And to the staff of Fachtna Collins vets in Bantry who took over from Brookpark. Val died because his body was so far gone it couldn’t carry on. He wanted to live – an affectionate, friendly puss, he ate as much as he could once he was rescued. He was given wet food because his mouth was so sore – and his mouth would have been treated once he’d gained some health. But he never did. Another unnecessary death.

I hope everyone who frequented Dunmanway Supervalu carpark in the past few months (it’ll have taken a long time for Val to have gone so far downhill) reads this and realises they are partly responsible for his needless death. If even one of them rescues an animal in the future as a result … well, it won’t be enough will it? But it would help – it would help that one animal. Wouldn’t it be nice if they all did?

Posted in In Loving Memory, In Memoriam.

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