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Purr-fect! SDC win four RSPCA awards


Stroud District Council’s animal welfare work across three of its services has been recognised with top accolades from the RSPCA.

The leading national animal welfare charity has highly rated Stroud District Council’s Animal Welfare Service, the council’s emergency planning regarding pets, and how its Housing Service supports pet owners.

SDC services have won a total of four PawPrints Awards:

  • Animal Welfare Service – platinum and silver.
  • Contingency (emergency) Planning – bronze.
  • Housing – bronze.

First award for Housing

The PawPrints award scheme celebrates and rewards best practice and this is the first time that the Housing Service has won bronze, for a clear and positive policy which makes a big difference to the lives of tenants who are pet owners, and their furry friends.

Stroud District Council Housing Committee Chair Councillor Mattie Ross said: “Pets play such an important part in many people’s lives and it is important we recognise that. Being successful for an award recognises the work that the housing team is doing to prioritise animal welfare as well as supporting tenants to sustainably own a pet. Pets help protect tenants’ wellbeing and lessen the social impacts of isolation, so the work that the team does is vitally important.”

Animal Welfare turns Gold to Platinum and strikes Silver

Stroud District Council’s Animal Welfare team is again celebrating a platinum PawPrint Award for maintaining a gold standard stray dog service for another five years.

SDCs Animal Welfare team has been awarded a gold PawPrint award in the stray dogs category for the tenth year running and has also been awarded a silver PawPrint award for the fourth year running for its animal activity licensing service.

The Animal Welfare Service’s stray dog service, alongside Teckels Animal Sanctuary, ensures that all stray dogs are safely collected and then looked after properly until they can be reunited with their owner. SDC also works closely with a number of other animal charities in the district including Cotswold Dogs & Cats Home which is currently the council’s staff charity of the year.

Animal Activity Licences were introduced in October 2018 to cover the selling of animals as pets, providing or arranging boarding for cats or dogs, the hiring out of horses, the breeding of dogs or the keeping or training of animals for exhibition. This new regime expanded the scope of activities requiring a licence and introduced significantly more rigorous animal welfare requirements.

Environment Committee Chair, Cllr Chloe Turner, congratulated the Animal Welfare Team.

“There is a fantastic and dedicated Animal Welfare Team at SDC and these awards highlight and celebrate the achievements of the officers who work hard to protect animals in our community,” she said. “Winning these awards is great news and recognises the continuing commitment of the team to ensure the highest standards of animal welfare across the district.”

Emergency planning success

SDC once again was awarded a Bronze for the way it considers the needs of animals when emergency planning for everything from floods to power cuts and more.

Lee Gingell, the RSPCA’s public affairs manager for local government, said: “Despite the challenging situation for all local authorities and public bodies across the country, we’re thrilled to see Stroud District Council pick up the RSPCA’s Stray Dog Services (Platinum) PawPrints and Animal Activity Licensing (Silver) Awards. 

“It’s a tough time for pet owners as the cost of living crisis continues, a tough time too for local authorities and public bodies as demands increase and resources decline. In the face of these challenges, we’re proud to award Stroud District Council as part of the PawPrints Awards for implementing and promoting schemes and policies that protect and promote animal welfare, and support pet owners – now more important than ever. 

“From delivering events and providing information to promote responsible pet ownership, to offering free and/or low-cost microchipping and neutering services and policies to protect animals during emergency situations, there’s so much great work that staff do behind the scenes. Too often, their dedication, commitment, and inspirational work goes unsung and doesn’t get the credit it deserves. 

“PawPrints is all about shouting from the rooftops; recognising individuals and teams and celebrating and promoting best practice. We’re delighted to showcase Stroud District Council and their work to protect and promote animal welfare; going above and beyond for animals and looking way past statutory minimums because it’s the right thing to do – for humans and animals.”

The scheme is supported by the Local Government Association, the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health and the Chartered Trading Standards Institute.

The annual award ceremony will take place on Wednesday 8th November at the Malmaison Hotel in Leeds.  

For more information about the Animal Welfare Service see https://www.stroud.gov.uk/environment/environmental-health/animal-welfare

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