Home' Christchurch Mail : October 4th 2012 Contents CHRISTCHURCH
Christchurch's largest circulating community newspaper
Thursday, October 4, 2012
RECALLING A YOUNG FIGHTER - P3
Hey, good lookin'
By ABBIE NAPIER
Rescued cat Ug is
now Oscar, and he
has found a home.
IF THIS unconventionally
handsome devil can find a
home, surely any animal has a
Euthanasia levels at the
Canterbury SPCA have
been steadily dropping.
Barry Helem said the
centre has been working
hard to reduce
If an animal can be
nursed back to health it
will remain at the SPCA for
life until it is adopted.
diseases such as cat flu have
meant some animals have had to
be put down to prevent the
spread of disease to healthy
animals. The development of a
separate quarantine-like facility
means animals can now be
isolated until they have
The centre euthanased only
28 per cent of its rescues last
year -- 10 per cent less than
2009 and 2010. This was a
considering most animals seen
at the SPCA are sick or injured.
This year Mr Helem hopes
numbers will be even lower.
October marks the start of kitten
season when cats breed more
often. From now until April, the
SPCA will be overrun with unwanted
or abandoned kittens and cats.
It is not all doom and gloom. The
Canterbury SPCA rehomes more
than 2500 animals a year.
neglected he had to have his fur
shaved. Linwood s Nicole Cawood
and Vanessa O Connor adopted the
cat (now dubbed Oscar) after Nicole
saw him on the SPCA website and
fell in love .
That tooth, I love it. He s perfect
and he s settled in really well.
By ABBIE NAPIER
I went to a house on Tuesday where
for the first time in my life, I
genuinely feared for my life.''
Kerry Howley, Age Concern
BEHIND CLOSED doors some Can-
tabrians are struggling under the
weight of their own possessions.
Post-quake, city agencies have been deal-
ing with a surge in reports of hoarders,
some living in squalor and unable to help
Age Concern, social workers, and the
SPCA are calling for a centralised team and
more funding for the treatment and support
of those suffering from the compulsion to
Contrary to the
opinions of some in
hoarding is a mental
in an obsessive way
and are unable to
throw away items of
little or no value.
Over time, their
result in almost
become a health and
Age Concern com-
officer Kerry Howley
said hoarders were
isolated people and
cut off from their
Since the earth-
quakes we have had
more referrals about
hoarding, she said.
The quakes mean
more people are knocking on their door --
Red Cross, neighbours, the Earthquake
Commission -- and seeing the conditions
these people are living in.
Earthquakes posed a significant risk for
some, who could easily be crushed under
their piles of possessions in a large after-
I went to a house on Tuesday where for
the first time in my life, I genuinely feared
for my life, she said. If the house had
collapsed or there had been an aftershock,
I would have been buried easily.
The clearing of a hoarder s home can cost
$10,000 in dump fees and labour alone.
After the cleaning, a hoarder requires sup-
port and counselling to stay on top of their
We need a clear system to help these
people, Ms Howley said. People need to
hoarding is not vol-
untary and these
hoarders need our
help and our respect,
just like any other
Ms Howley is part
of an informal inter-
agency group who
together to help
tives from the city
mental health unit,
SPCA advocates and
group has no fund-
ing and each agency
involved lacks any
budget to help those
team with government funding would be
able to help the hoarders to clean up their
homes and gain access to long-term psycho-
Mail investigation, pages8&9.
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