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      20.03.2004 19:04
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      I have 2 cats, both of whom I adopted from the RSPCA and who are both thankfully now healthy and happy. The best advice I can give when deciding to visit the RSPCA with a view to adopting a cat is to be honest. They will ask you about your particular circumstances - your living arrangements, family situation and other things that are relevant. This will help them to match you with the most suitable cats. So, just be honest about your situation, whatever it may be. This will avoid you ending up rehoming the wrong cat, who will probably have been through enough trauma already. It is also best to go with an open mind, don't set your mind too much on what kind of cat you'd like until you've seen what's on offer. We'd all like a cat that looks like the one in the bacardi breezer ad, but sadly the RSPCA centres are mostly full of bog standard moggies. If you do look around and find a cat that you think might be right for you, arrange to go back for another visit. The RSPCA will be more than happy to keep hold of a cat whilst you get to know it, and it you. If it means the cat is being placed in the right home. So take your time and make sure you've chosen the right cat. The only other piece of advice i can offer is to ask for advice on any aspects of caring for cats that you're not too sure about. Its expert advice, and it's free! They also provide a good back-up service if there's anything you're not sure about in the first few weeks. They really are very helpful. Finally if this advice is useful to anyone, I hope it helps you choose a cat who will make you really happy!

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        21.11.2002 00:51
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        As a half-written opinion, this has been languishing homeless on my computer for quite some time now. When I came across the FORCHARITY scheme that has been set up within dooyoo ? visit the profile page for more details ? I thought that this would be the perfect incentive to complete my review and give it a worthwhile home. As the topic of the review is a charity in itself, what better place to post it? I have been a member of the RSPCA for a considerable number of years now ? I first joined when I was still in junior school. My incentive? Well, I liked animals, and I knew that my membership would somehow help animals. Well, that and I got a glossy magazine every so often and the chance to earn certificates for conservation work ? which is very cool when you are 9. Or at least, it was to me as a 9 year old. Before I became a fully-fledged adult member, I earned the RSPCA?s bronze and silver awards for conservation ? which I?m sure my mother still has somewhere! These days though I find I have little time for such practical work, although my subscription is faithfully renewed every year and I still enjoy reading the magazines and reports I get from them. The RSPCA is something a bit special. As the oldest animal welfare organization in the world, it was set up as the Society for Protection of Cruelty to Animals in London in 1824. Since then, it has worked tirelessly on two fronts ? to turn public opinion against the maltreatment of animals, and to employ inspectors for direct action and to bring offenders to court. Currently, the society has over 200 branches throughout England and Wales (although it has a sister society in the SSPCA in Scotland) and around 300 inspectors. The work of the society involves checking animal markets, pet shops, kennels, stables and zoos to ensure the animals are being fairly treated ? it also runs a chain of rescue and rehoming centres for unwanted pets, and several animal hospitals (such as the one featured
        in the Rolf Harris BBC series). The RSPCA also campaigns on issues that it sees relevant to its cause, such as a ban on hunting with dogs and an end to factory farming. This charity is a massive cause and one of the most popular in the UK ? it has a turnover of around £30m annually, all of which comes from the public rather than the government (two thirds of which are legacies). As a member, I help the charity by paying an annual subscription fee, and I also give one off donations to specific campaigns as and when I can afford to. I have also written letters to my MP to ask him to support petitions on animal welfare when parliament votes on them. This actually takes very little effort on my part, but the fact that there are so many people doing it makes the RSPCA a massive force in improving conditions for animals. But it doesn?t just end there. The RSPCA uses its financial weight and practical experience to work with charities abroad to promote better welfare and bring medical aid to animals. This can involve donations, training, advice, equipment loans or a supply of medicines. If you want to get involved in this cause, then visit www.rspca.org.uk, or write to them at their HQ in Horsham, West Sussex. Membership costs £17.50 for adults and £6 for children, and includes membership card, magazines, annual reports and the chance to vote at any society elections ? which is a vital aspect of membership, as there have been problems recently with several pro-hunting groups applying for entry to promote electoral results in their favour. Personally, I don?t find this expensive, and further donations of cash or voluntary labour are entirely at your discretion. You can also support the RSPCA by using their gift catalogues, as a donation from each purchase goes towards the charity?s work. (Please note that the RSPCA does not condone any form of violent or criminal behaviour in pursuing its aims. This includes hunt saboteurs, pe
        rsonal attacks such as those on Huntingdon Life Science staff or setting loose captive animals directly into the countryside). "This opinion was donated to the FORCHARITY account by Collingwood21. To read more about this initiative to the FORCHARITY profile page and all will be explained!"

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          22.09.2001 06:09
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            17.07.2001 04:00
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            It has always been beyond my comprehension how anyone can cause suffering to an animal, and yet every day we hear of terrible instances of cruelty both here and abroad. It is simply not good enough to shake your head in sympathy and say that there is nothing that you can do about it. There is an organisation that cares enough to work unceasingly in the interests of helpless animals and it needs your help. Formed in 1824 and originally called the SPCA; this was the world’s first ever anti-cruelty society. It was formed by Richard Martin and William Wilberforce five years before the formation of the police force. In its first year it was responsible for 149 convictions of cruelty to animals. Queen Victoria gave it the Royal seal of approval in 1840 and thus the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals was formed. Today’s RSPCA has 328 inspectors who investigate 100,000 complaints of cruelty every year in England and Wales, and every effort is made to bring the perpetrators of cruelty to justice. The inspectors also take part in thousands of rescues, visit establishments, and arrange collections of homeless animals. Every year the RSPCA treats over 270,000 animals, from homes or the wild, and find new homes for almost 80,000 homeless pets. Last year they dealt with 1.5 million calls from the public. The society encourages responsible care of pets and works to protect farm and wild animals through education professionals working in schools. The RSPCA campaigns relentlessly in the UK and across the world for reforms and new laws, which will give animals greater protection. An emotive subject is that of animal research, which the society is continually monitoring. Being a registered charity, the RSPCA receives no funding from the state or lottery aid. It relies totally on voluntary contributions from us Joe public. Supported by a voluntary network of 195 branches, the RSPCA requires
            £60 million a year to meet running costs. It has its website at www.rspca.com. Please visit and see if there is some way you can help. Here is a little of what you will find. The website is jam-packed with information about the RSPCA. The title of this op “Curious Cat Loses Ear” is explained here under: •News This button gives news stories which are updated daily, one of which is about Tyser the tabby who had accidentally become wedged against the exhaust system of her owners’ car. Other articles offer currant advice during the foot and mouth crisis, to both farmers and the general public. On the particular day that I checked, details of the Queens speech pertaining to fox hunting were reported. •Campaigns The fight against fox hunting is only one of the RSPCA’s current fights, details of which are found by clicking the campaign button. Here are also to be found many other campaigns that the RSPCA is actively involved in such as whaling, live animal transport and the testing of cosmetics on animals. Did you know for instance that In Europe alone, around 38,000 animals are still suffering in experiments every year to develop and test new cosmetic ingredients and products? Details of how you can complain, who to complain to, along with tips on what to say are given here. •Animal Advice This has masses and masses of help and advice on the keeping of animals, regardless of whether you have a ferret or a stick insect. Pet insurance is covered here along with neutering, micro chipping, worms, fleas and even grieving over a loved pet. If you want a pet but don’t fancy the responsibility, why not adopt a cyber pet. A quick download available free here and you are ready to name him/her/it and no vets bills looming. •Donations As mentioned earlier, the RSPCA relies entirely on donations from the public. He
            re it explains the funding and how you can send donations to them in various ways or sign up to their credit card, which is possibly the easiest way to help. •Membership You can become a friend of the RSPCA for as little as £3 a month, or a national member for £17.50 a year. RSPCA Friends and national members can also join a local branch. There are 195 volunteer branches throughout the country, which campaign for the RSPCA as well as raise funds and carry out practical animal welfare work. •Kids stuff All children love animals and this section is great for the kids, with games and details of how to help the RSPCA by joining a junior club. There are also prizes to be won and more details on the cyber pet mentioned above. •Education This section explains how the RSPCA “encourages and supports animal welfare education for students, teachers and youth organizations across the country.” It offers advice on many subjects including classroom pets, and tips and advice on forming a school wildlife garden. What about a quiz to test you knowledge of pets? A lovely FREE screensaver of a fox and cubs? A shop where you can help by buying cards or gifts? Why not actually join the RSPCA. On the site are details of employment which is currently on offer, along with the necessary qualifications and a description of the job. At the very least please visit the site and see if there is anything in some way you can do to help the RSPCA in its ongoing fight against cruelty to animals. If you need to contact the RSPCA to report an act of cruelty, neglect or your concern for the welfare of an animal, call the RSPCA's 24-hour hotline on 0870 55 55 999.

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