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RSPCA’s Healthy Pet Days make a Paws-itive Impact

A whole team effort! James Dixon on the bike, then top row Petina Smith, Jacinta Sillince, Tania McCosker, Maree Myers, Emma Davidson, Gemma Ma, Darren Grimes, Leon Smith and Lewis Nikki. Bottom row Dr Ann-Margret Withers, Paige Johnson, Alyson Wright holding Boss and little Shaquisha Nikki Monaghan, Vet Shane Sullivan, Marco Vecchi and Ranger Ryan Smith. Photo contributed

Enhancing pet well-being in Bourke

In a heartwarming initiative to bolster animal welfare and community health, the RSPCA’s Community Outreach team recently brought their Healthy Pet Days program to Bourke.

Dr Ann-Margret Withers, a key member of the Outreach team, passionately articulated the program’s objectives to the Western Herald during what little time she had free at the clinic.

The program aims to address a range of crucial preventive measures.

“We’re looking after animals, doing core preventive things such as vaccinations, microchipping, worming, and preventing ticks,” Dr Withers said.

“Ticks can cause a disease called ehrlichiosis that is not in NSW yet, but it very well may be on its way, so we’re is promoting awareness that we need to keep up with vaccinations.”

Highlighting the challenges of a town close to the border like Bourke, Dr Withers emphasized the importance of community awareness:

“Dogs are transported through here and there have been cases of ehrlichiosis in NSW, but they’re all dogs that have come from the Northern Territory or Queensland,” she said.

Dr Withers also underscored the significance of desexing as a humane method of population control, working closely with the local vet service.

“Rather than dogs dying of parvovirus, desexing serves as a preventative measure,” she said.

“If we can desex them, we can limit the numbers of stray cats and dogs. Our collaboration with the local veterinary service is instrumental.”

Despite the heat, the team encountered a robust community response in Bourke.

Nathan Dwight, the North-Western regional inspector from the RSPCA was at the Bourke clinic and others were visiting from the Yagoona RSPCA in Sydney and the Rutherford RSPCA in The Hunter as well as a volunteer Vet, Shane Sullivan from Vets Beyond Borders. […]

Read more in the printed edition of The Western Herald.

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