9 Victorian animal welfare groups unite to find homes for animals

To get as many animals as possible out of shelters, animal welfare organisations

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UPDATE: Epping Animal Welfare Facility

We’re pleased to announce RSPCA Victoria’s five advocacy goals for 2021-22

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What reducing the quarantine period really means

Currently, all animals who enter Victorian animal shelters or pounds must serve

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Dog left in hot car ‘minutes away from death’

In December 2020, City of Melbourne Local Laws and Animal Management received a

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Category / Media
9 Victorian animal welfare groups unite to find homes for animals

To get as many animals as possible out of shelters, animal welfare organisations

Read More
UPDATE: Epping Animal Welfare Facility

We’re pleased to announce RSPCA Victoria’s five advocacy goals for 2021-22

Read More
Dog left in hot car ‘minutes away from death’

In December 2020, City of Melbourne Local Laws and Animal Management received a

Read More
New ‘Plan for Victoria’s new animal care and protection laws’ sets out big improvements for animal welfare

Victorians are encouraged to have their say and help shape new animal welfare le

Read More

Right now, there are too many animals in Victorian shelters – animals who want and deserve loving homes. To get as many animals as possible out of shelters, animal welfare organisations across the state are uniting for Mission Adoptable, a pet adoption promotion aiming to find homes for Victoria’s animals in need. Increased pressures on animal welfare groups including fewer reclaims on lost pets, rising costs and a reduction in adoption applications, means higher numbers of animals need new homes.

Running from Saturday 1st to Sunday 9th October, Animal Aid, Australian Animal Protection Society, Bendigo Animal Relief Centre, Cat Protection Society, Geelong Animal Welfare Society, Greyhound Adoption Program, Lort Smith Animal Hospital, RSPCA Victoria and Second Chance Animal Rescue are all taking part in Mission Adoptable.

Dogs, cats and a variety of small animals are currently seeking new homes in Victoria with the Mission Adoptable animal welfare groups calling for people to adopt to help ease the pressure and to make way for more animals in need.

If ever there was a time to adopt, it’s now. Aside from giving an animal a new chance at a happy life, there are many benefits associated with adopting a pet. Research shows pets make people physically and psychologically healthier by encouraging exercise, enhancing social connectedness and providing companionship.

Animals adopted from animal welfare organisations are behaviour checked, microchipped, vaccinated and desexed.

Potential adopters are matched with pets based on a set of criteria including lifestyle suitability, and physical requirements.

For those who are not in a position to take a new pet into their home, foster caring is an integral part of caring for Victorian animals in need and anyone interested is encouraged to contact the organisations participating in the Mission Adoptable promotion to seek additional information.

For promotional offerings from each of the organisations participating in Mission Adoptable visit

Quote attributable to Animal Aid CEO, Mark Menze
When we have more animals coming into our care than being adopted, it makes our work extremely difficult. We will continue to help our community by taking lost and abandoned animals, but we need our community to open their hearts and homes and consider bringing one (or two) of our shelter animals into their family.

Quote attributable to Australian Animal Protection Society General Manager, Megan Seccull
With so many beautiful animals looking for and deserving of a loving home, we are thrilled to be a part of this collaboration program to raise awareness and find homes for animals in need. We hope as a united group our message will be heard by many and our cause highlighted for every abandoned, unwanted and unloved animal looking for love. General Manager – Megan Seccull

Quote attributable to Bendigo Animal Relief Centre (BARC) Manager, Fra Atyeo
BARC is pleased to be part of Mission Adoptable and looks forward to seeing many animals in need of a home being matched to their new owners. The campaign is a great initiative that backs BARC’s own vision and values relating to responsible pet ownership.

Quote attributable to The Cat Protection Society Marketing and Communications Manager, Rachel Bitzilis
Like most Shelters across Victoria, our Adoption Shelter is at absolute capacity with vulnerable cats in need of their forever home. We are excited to be working alongside likeminded organisations who are also facing the same challenges and encouraging Victorians who may be considering pet ownership to adopt during our “Mission Adoptable” campaign. To encourage adoption and ongoing responsible pet ownership, our Society will be offering all new adoptees a free cat carrier and a 25% off voucher to visit our Cat Friendly, Cat Only Veterinary Clinic at a later date.

Quote attributable to Geelong Animal Welfare Society CEO, Helen Cocks
The Geelong Animal Welfare Society is at capacity with beautiful animals in need of forever homes. We are hopeful that by joining forces with other Victorian animal welfare organisations in Mission Adoptable, we can encourage those considering adopting a pet, to do so now; to help take pressure off shelters around the state and to give thousands of animals the loving home they deserve. At GAWS, we have many dogs, cats and small pets in our care – some who have been with us for months – waiting to be adopted.

Quote attributable to Greyhound Adoption Program General Manager, Dr. Gavin Goble
We are always looking for the perfect forever homes for our greyhounds and now more than ever. Greyhounds are an extremely popular breed of dog to have as household pets. We have greyhounds that suit families of any size, people of any age and most environments. Our expert GAP team is ready to welcome anyone to meet, play and acquaint themselves with any of our ‘ready to adopt’ greyhounds before meticulously matching to a loving home.

Quote attributable to Lort Smith Campbellfield Manager, Jennifer Donaldson
Our world has changed enormously over the last 3 years and the pandemic has impacted not only humans, but our companion animals. Shelters across Victoria have reached full capacity and we’re desperately looking for loving new homes for the many animals in our care. This is why we’re joining forces to voice a single message – animals deserve a loving home for keeps, and we need your help to find that home. From foster carers, to shelters, donors and the people putting up their hand to adopt – when we come together as a community, we can achieve great things! Support Mission Adoptable 1st – 9th October and make a real difference to animals’ lives.

Quote attributable to RSPCA Victoria Rehabilitations and Adoption Manager, Rupert Baker
RSPCA’s shelters are currently operating close to capacity due to a number of factors that are impacting our ability to move animals into forever homes, and we are calling on the community for help. By joining forces with likeminded organisations, we hope our message to encourage adoptions will be heard, resulting in more animals in happy homes and more space for the animals that will come into our care in the coming months.

Quote attributable to Second Chance Animal Rescue CEO/Founder, Marisa Debattista
Over the last three years, things have gotten increasingly more difficult for many in our community. There has been an increase in the number of people facing hardship, domestic and family violence or just struggling to keep up with the rising costs of living. The need for the services we provide here at SCAR has doubled, and we’re not alone when we say that our shelter is seeing a huge Increase In surrender enquiries. We are at capacity and animals that would have once found homes in a matter of days, have been in our care now for months. So, we stand together with our fellow animal welfare advocates as part of Mission Adoptable, doing whatever it takes until all these vulnerable cats and dogs are finally safe and happy in the arms of families who love them.

From 16 October 2022, the Animal Welfare Facility in Epping will be managed by the City of Whittlesea in partnership with Moreland and Darebin councils after the councils made the decision to take animal shelter management services in-house.

RSPCA Victoria is currently working with the councils during the transition period in the lead up to the official handover.

RSPCA Victoria team members continue to prioritise animal welfare and have a structured plan to transfer post-quarantine animals out of EAWF. This plan is already well underway so we can ensure excellent animal welfare outcomes and support the needs of all animals in our care.

All transferred animals will remain under the care of RSPCA Victoria and will progress towards rehoming. The work we are doing includes:

  • Continuing to perform health and behaviour assessments on all animals to ensure we can meet their needs moving forward
  • Moving animals from Epping to our other RSPCA shelters – we have transfers running multiple times a week across the RSPCA Victoria network
  • Running major adoption promotions in the coming weeks to encourage members of the community to come forward and adopt
  • Successfully adopting out our FIV cats by providing extra information and support to people to help them care for these animals.

We would like to reassure the community that RSPCA Victoria does not euthanase animals for capacity reasons.  As a socially conscious shelter, RSPCA Victoria believes every animal that can be treated, has the capacity to live a quality, healthy life and is safe to be rehomed in the community should be made available for rehoming.

We thank the local communities for their support and their concern for animal welfare.

The case of Ilker Ekici was finalised on Tuesday in the Online Magistrates’ Court sitting at Melbourne. Ekici was prosecuted for leaving his Pugalier dog Lucky in his car on a day due to be over 28 degrees. Mr Ekici was convicted and fined $1,100, with costs of $5,511.68 also ordered.

In December 2020, City of Melbourne Local Laws and Animal Management received a phone call from Melbourne West Police in relation to a dog that had been left unattended inside a parked vehicle in North Melbourne. The dog was panting and appeared to be in respiratory distress.

Temperatures recorded by the Bureau of Meteorology at the two closest weather stations to the vehicle at that time were 34.5 and 32.3 degrees Celsius respectively. A veterinarian was called to assess the dog and determined he was suffering from potentially life-threatening heat stroke and was minutes away from dying if left in the vehicle.

Given the immediate welfare risk, and after several unsuccessful attempts to contact the owner, entry was gained to the vehicle and Lucky was seized under Section 24U of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act Vic 1986.
Lucky received veterinary treatment at the Lort Smith Animal Hospital in the Intensive Care Unit for 12 hours after removal from the car – his temperature was extremely high at 41.8 degrees and his gums were cyanotic showing his blood was oxygen deficient.

The initial report was made at 1:20pm, a calling card was left on the car of the accused at 2:45pm and the owner contacted the City of Melbourne Local Laws and Animal Management Manager at 4:30pm. Lucky’s owner had knowingly left him locked in a car for an extended period of time on a hot day.

RSPCA Victoria Chief Inspector Michael Stagg said the temperature can increase rapidly inside cars and it’s never ok to leave a dog unattended in a car, even on days where the forecast is mild.
“Even on a 23-degree day, the inside of a car can reach over 40 degrees and pets can die an agonising death in less than six minutes.

“Never leave your dog in a vehicle – even when the windows are down – dogs can still overheat and die. They are particularly at risk of overheating as they pant to cool down, which also adds to the rising temperature in a vehicle.

“An animal left in a car or on the back of a ute can suffer extreme stress, organ failure and seizures. In many cases, even if the animal is still alive when found, the damage can be too extensive to be revived and recover.”

Anyone who has concerns for the welfare of an animal is encouraged to contact RSPCA Victoria on 9224 2222 or at All concerns relating to animals in hot cars should be directed to Victoria Police on triple zero.

It can take less than six minutes for an animal to die in a hot car, ute or truck

  • Do not leave your dog in a vehicle – even when the windows are down dogs can still overheat and die.
  • One study found that even on mild days the temperature inside the vehicle rises rapidly to dangerous levels
  • When the ambient temperature is 22°C the temperature inside a car can rise to over 47°C in 60 minutes.
  • The high temperatures in the car combined with inadequate ventilation/air flow mean that a dog cannot thermo-regulate leaving them vulnerable to over-heating which can be fatal.
  • Veterinary help should be sought as soon as possible if heat stroke is suspected. Heat stress is an emergency. Given the seriousness of this condition, heatstroke is an emergency.
  • Initial emergency treatment at home should aim to normalise body temperature. Apply or spray tepid/cool water onto the animal’s fur/skin followed by fanning of the wet fur. Don’t use ice-cold water or
    ice as this may exacerbate the problem

Victorians are encouraged to have their say and help shape new animal welfare legislation by providing feedback on the Plan for Victoria’s new animal care and protection laws, which was released by the Minister for Agriculture today.

RSPCA Victoria CEO Dr Liz Walker welcomed the Plan, which sets out how new animal welfare legislation would differ from the current Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act 1986, which is over 35 years old and in need of reform.

Dr Walker said, “we are excited to see that after extensive consultation with the community, industry and stakeholders, the Plan for Victoria’s new animal care and protection laws proposes many positive changes including:

  • Recognition of animal sentience in the new legislation – that is, explicitly recognising that animals have the capacity to feel, perceive their environment, and to have positive and negative experiences like pleasure and pain;
  • Care requirements – to recognise that people have a duty to care for the health and wellbeing of animals, including providing appropriate nutrition, physical environments and behavioural interactions;
  • New provisions to help authorised officers including RSPCA Victoria Inspectors protect and care for animals, including an improved enforcement toolkit and better provisions to provide appropriate care for animals held in custody due to welfare concerns.”

These are just some of the proposed positive changes for animals outlined in the Animal Care Plan released today, which are designed to modernise Victoria’s legislation and bring it into line with community expectations and current scientific understanding.

The consultation period is now underway – RSPCA Victoria will be making a submission and encourages all Victorians who care about the welfare of animals to do the same.