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Last Updated: Monday April 27 2009 16:32 GMT

More pets dumped in credit crunch

A cat

Adam's got the story...

We've heard loads about how the credit crunch means people are losing their jobs and businesses are going bust, but now animals are being affected too.

Animal charities say there's been a huge rise in the number of abandoned pets - with more than 30 animals being dumped in England and Wales every day.

Last year, the RSPCA dealt with 11,586 abandoned animals, up 4,239 from 2007.

It's thought the credit crunch may be partly to blame as the cost of looking after furry and scaly friends soars.

And it's not just cats and dogs who are unwanted - rabbits, hamsters and exotic animals are also being affected, while the number of horses and fish being abandoned has more than doubled!

Chris Walkden from the RSPCA said: "I think when money's tight people look at their pets as an expense that maybe they can do without."

Help available

As well as people dumping animals, the RSPCA says it's also being swamped with calls from people who say they're finding it tough to look after their pets.

If you're struggling to look after an animal, RSPCA officer Tim Wass has got this advice...

"It is an offence to abandon any animal and there is never any excuse for doing so.

"If people have pets they cannot care for, for any reason, then help and advice is always available from the RSPCA."