A SCHEME has been launched to tackle the spiralling problem of unneutered Staffordshire bull terriers in Hastings.
The RSPCA Sussex East and Hastings Branch is offering neutering and microchipping to Staffie owners, in return for a donation to the RSPCA of £30, after volunteers reported high levels of unwanted dogs being born in the town.
They say many of these owners, particularly younger ones, are failing to neuter their dogs.
Staffies, alongside other bull breeds, are the most neglected in the country, with the RSPCA picking up abandoned, neglected and cruelly treated dogs on a daily basis.
Introducing the scheme will prevent the spread of infectious diseases, fighting, straying and unwanted litters of puppies, said the RSPCA.
Its animal welfare projects officer Liz Andrews said: “Staffies can be the most wonderful dogs and fantastic family dogs - with the right owners and the right care they can be loyal and fun.
“But all too often they fall into the wrong hands and people take them on without consideration of their needs and neglect them, allow them to breed indiscriminately and then abandon them.”
The offer is open to Staffie or Staffie cross breed dogs in the Hastings area only.
Owners must be claiming housing or council tax benefits, Income Support, Job Seekers Allowance, or Pension Credits, to be eligible.
Interested owners should go to the 1066 vets at 201 Battle Road, St Leonards, (with proof of benefits) and fill in an application form.
The scheme will close once the limited funds run out, so early application is advised.