Annual Statistics 2015-16

Annual Statistics 2015-16

RSPCA report on animal outcomes from our shelters, care and adoption centres 2015-16


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The RSPCA is Australia’s oldest, largest and most trusted animal welfare organisation. With this privileged position comes great responsibility. This year we received1 137,391 animals into our animal shelters and adoption centres across the country.
We are pleased to report that over the past 10 years we have adopted out, reunited with their owners or released into the wild 701,943 animals. This includes 382,951 dogs/puppies and 246,928 cats/kittens that were adopted or reunited with owners.
Adoption and reclaiming rates nationally have been increasing over time and significant improvements in the outcomes for cats and dogs (including kittens and puppies) have been achieved. This can be attributed to the introduction of new approaches and programs to increase the number of animals adopted and reunited with their owners. These include highly-visible public initiatives as well as substantial work behind-the-scenes, such as:

  • Extensive promotion of the wonderful animals we have available for adoption through www.adoptapet.com.au, social media, events and traditional media.
  • Increasing community awareness and support for the value of adopting animals from shelters and rescue groups more broadly, including through media stories and events.
  • Additional proactive and creative adoption initiatives, such as Valentine’s Day promotions, promotions focusing on senior animals, and cats adopting a mum and kitten or two kittens together, adoption centres in shopping precincts and pet retail adoption partners including PetBarn.
  • Working with smaller rescue groups to extend the reach of adoption initiatives.
  • Providing services to reunite lost pets with their owners.
  • Providing community and shelter-based desexing schemes to reduce the number of unplanned pregnancies and unwanted animals, including initiatives reaching pet owners experiencing financial hardship.
  • Expanding foster care networks to cater for greater numbers of animals. Animals cared for in foster homes include pregnant animals, those with young litters, orphaned kittens and puppies, seniors, those with special needs, those recovering from surgery, those needing to build their confidence or requiring behavioural training in a home setting and those that don’t cope well in a shelter environment.
  • Dedicated behavioural trainers that put in place behavioural modification and management plans for animals requiring specialist support, and who also provide post adoption behavioural classes.
  • Improvements in clinical veterinary care including isolation facilities and processes, in shelter disease management and surgical rehabilitation.
  • Adoption follow up with new owners to ensure pets are settling into their new homes and owners are provided with additional information and referral to appropriate telephone or on-site support services.
  • Community information, awareness raising and education targeting responsible pet ownership and working with local councils, strata committees and landlords to encourage support for pet ownership.
  • Monitoring current research and investment in Australian-based research to ensure evidence-based approaches to animal welfare.
  • Passionate staff and volunteers who work tirelessly for the animals in their care.


1 Received throughout this report refers to all animals in RSPCA facilities during the 2015-2016 financial year.

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