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Update on Kittens in Small Laundry

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 

I am absolutely furious. I mentioned about a litter of kittens that were about 2 weeks old...now 3 weeks old being kept in a small laundry all day with no fresh air...no kitty litter provided and the only food available was dry and water.

Well I did ring the RSPCA and the response I got was less than enthusiastic. The lady made me feel like it was criminal to call in the first place. She didn't care for any other details and it gets better....

Since there is no inspector living in my town....Port Hedland she said no one would be willing to make the trip since the closest inspector lived in Geraldton, which is really far away. In fact there is an inspector in Karratha....two hours at most away by car. Also it was not an issue as most people do this with their kittens to confine the mess in one room...nevermind that this room is about the size of a closet and non-airconditioned and the remperature soars to mid 30C in the shade....the lack of air circulation in that room, the smell of cat urine, but hey, she didn't want to know. I am writing an email complaining about it and something had better get done.

And since the guy's parents are back in town this weekend or the next...he doesn't even know....I'm going to get him cat food for kittens....milk for kittens and whatever else I can think of. Hell, I'll even take them off his hands if I can and look after them. I cannot believe how I was treated.

I am never donating to the state branch again.
post #2 of 8
What a shame that the people who are supposed to help animals just don't care. I don't blame you for being angry. Hopefully you can help these poor kittens before it's too late. Hugs and support for you for doing this.
post #3 of 8
What is the matter with these people???????? It seems to me like they don't really care at all, they are just acting like it is no big deal!!!!
post #4 of 8
Thread Starter 

Well I am slowly calming down about this. I've written a long email to the RSPCA of WA complaining about the whole situation and how I was treated and thinking of cc-ing to the national office. I probably will. I'm talking to the guy tonight and I am buying kittens food and kitten milk and also offering to look after them for him until the real owners come back. And I will be telling them what their son has been doing. Here's what I wrote...still some editting to do.

To Whom it May Concern,

I contacted the RSPCA Headquarters today between roughly 10:00 AM and 10:15AM, Friday, 11th, October, 2002 and was treated like a criminal. My phone call was initially answered first by a polite voice and put me through to another voice when I asked for information about country inspectors. I was answered by a female voice who sounded like she had more important things to do rather than answer the call. I do apologise for interrrupting.

When I asked for information about country inspectors after telling her that I lived in Port Hedland, she promptly went vague and laughed. I am roughly 150cm tall and I do thank her again for reminding me that I am a small person again, (I seem to forget often). She told me whilst laughing that the nearest inspector lived in Geraldton probably and no one would be willing to travel up this way. In the Telstra White Pages there are three country inspectors listed for Karratha which is a two hour car trip from Port Hedland. Is this a misprint?

However, I do credit her in that she did ask for the problems I was calling about, though absolutely no credit should be given about how she asked and what she wanted to know. I said that I knew of a litter of kittens being kept in a laundry all day and were taken out for an hour a day for fresh air. She then cut me off to tell me that it was quite normal as most people do it to confine the mess in one room. She then wanted to know about the next problem so I told her. The problem I had, (and still have), was in relation to a dog that was, (and still is), kept in a yard with no water. There is only an empty bowl, although obviously to the average person on the street, it is a "water vessel". I will remember if I ever decide to call the RSPCA again.

I have to agree with her with a point she made as I am not familiar with the Dog Act, (though from the tone of her voice, I think I should memorise it verbatim). Do thank her for the hint for me. I was told to call the local ranger so he can enforce the Dog Act upon the owners in order for the dog to have water. I am sorry to have bothered the reknown RSPCA with such a trivial matter.

I will continue in the knowledge that this is a long letter of complaint. The kittens that I mentioned are kept in a laundry that is at most 2.5 x 1m. It sounds large but in it, there is a cupboard, next to that a washing machine, and next to that, a sink with cupboard underneath, (the metal type, you know the ones). The kittens are in front of the washing machine. There is poor air circulation, the window is open but no breeze can enter. It's extremely stuffy, even at night when it's cool so I don't know what the conditions are like when it reaches 30+ degrees celsius outside. There is dry food provided and water is available. There is no kitty litter available so any mess presumably ends up on the floor. It is not fit for a human to be kept in this room. I do not see how this situation is normal. The woman I spoke to did not give me the opportunity to tell her any of this so she has no knowledge of this.

I have since found out that this woman's name is Sonia. She told me that when I called at around 11:30AM on the same day to ask for her name. Why is it that staff do not introduce themselves when they answer a call? I do not know whether this is her real name and I am rather skeptical. However, I do know that it is the person responsible for answering questions in relation to country inspectors. In the two instances that I have talked to her I have found her arrogrant, curt and rude. I believe Sonia should undergo training for customer service before she is allowed to have any interaction with the public again, or at the very least work under supervision or be monitored.

Before my phone calls to the RSPCA today, I had the utmost respect for the organisation. That is no longer the case. I still respect the company and will still donate despite Sonia. I do realise the problems I mentioned are of no concern to the RSPCA. What I am angry and annoyed at is the way I was treated. For a non-profit organisation relying on public support, it is highly inappropriate for anyone in the organisation to forget this. I want a sincere apology from Sonia herself, for everything that I have mentioned in this letter of complaint. In addition to this I want an official RSPCA guarantee that no other member of the public is treated in such a manner accompanied with an official apology. I also want my questions answered. I want all this in hard copy. I will be telling everyone of my experience until I receive all this.

Yours faithfully,

Magdeline Lum

I have added my postal address as well in the actual copy. just felt weird posting that up here.
post #5 of 8
Excellent letter! It shows how angry and upset you are, but also makes very specific points that require an answer.

How are the kittens doing? Are you going to be able to rescue them?
post #6 of 8
That is a very good letter!!! I hope maybe it will do some good! Keep us posted!
post #7 of 8
Thank you so much for keeping us posted! It was really an outrage (to quote Hissy, "Grrrrrrr!"). I think the letter you wrote is GREAT. You remain level headed, and communicate well the problem. You go girl!
post #8 of 8
Thread Starter 

Thank you. I will be sending it today for someone to find tomorrow, (Monday).

I am going to contact the real owners of the cats today and arranging a time to go over and having a look at the kittens and the conditions that they are kept in. If it is appalling, (I don't think it will be...got a habit of thinking the best in people before judging), I will offer to take all four kittens and go from there.

The only sad thing, (it makes me angry too), is that it will be EXTREMELY difficult to find them good homes. This and by the time they're ready to go, it will be a couple of weeks before Christmas and I really don't want to add to the problem to the dumping of kittens. I live in a one bedroom unit so really I have no room for five kitties, it just wouldn't be fair. I wouldn't dare let them out as there's a feral cat and dog problem. If I did rescue all four and couldn't find good homes for them all, I would definitely keep one...at most two. The remaining would have to be put to sleep. I don't want to do it that way and I know it's not fair. There's no pound or cattery with a no kill policy.

I just wish people would take responsibility when they decide to share their lives with an animal. It saves a lot of heartache and suffering in the long run. I don't see why a cat or dog isn't spayed or neutered if there is no intention of breeding. There are endless numbers of kittens, puppies, cats and dogs with no homes. And endless more in appalling conditions. Enough already.
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