A rehoming facility in Manchester has reported a drastic drop in the number of lost dogs being reclaimed by their owners.

According to Manchester Dogs’ Home, it has seen a reclaim rate of only 23% since Christmas 2013, whereas annual rates have traditionally been closer to more than 33%.

Lisa Graham manages the home and believes the drop “has very serious practical consequences.”

“10% fewer dogs being reclaimed by their owners means 10% more dogs in our care, needing to be looked after until they’re rehomed,” she said.

“This is obviously taking a heavy toll on our available kennel space and financial resources. At the same time we’re also seeing a rise in the number of dogs admitted with medical problems that need costly veterinary treatment here before being put up for adoption.”

“We’re assuming the reason for the 10% drop is the recession, and people struggling to afford the upkeep of their dogs.

“For many dog owners with lower incomes, this must be a very heart-breaking situation, and it’s something we’re deeply concerned about.”

Ms Graham said the home was committed to its ongoing programmes of low-cost vaccine clinics and free microchipping to help dog owners struggling with the cost of keeping their canine companion. 

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