Survivors need help

By Danielle Nicholson

Paws 4 Life is trying to raise funds to treat two dogs rescued from a Hamilton puppy mill.

Non-profit organisation Paws 4 Life takes in unwanted, abused and neglected animals and took possession of 20 dogs in August.

The dogs were among 45 rescued from a property north of Hamilton. None of the dogs were registered or microchipped. Two of the dogs were so sick they had to be euthanased.

Paws 4 Life founder Rachael Maher said all the dogs were in "shocking condition". Most of the remaining 18 had severe dental issues - "their teeth weren't just brown with tartar, they were septic" - and as such had to have the teeth they had left removed. A further two require knee surgery.

Paws 4 Life founder Rachael Maher has raised $700 towards the surgeries, but needs to raise a further $2300.

Puppy mills and backyard breeding operations run by inexperienced people were all too common, Rachael said. "People need to look over their fences and if they see something that doesn't seem right, they need to speak up for the sake of these animals." She encouraged people to report anything out of the ordinary to council, SPCA or Paws 4 Life.

Rachael said Vet Focus at Glenview had been "phenomenal", treating the dogs from the puppy mill, along with any others that come into Rachael's care. Newstead Lodge Boarding Kennels had also taken in all the puppy mill dogs before they were fostered out.

Paws 4 Life has had 850 animals pass through the home-based charity, which has been operating for just over two years. Rachael said the dogs that were rescued from the puppy mill were not socialised, were terrified of men and didn't know how to behave around children.

However, they have been rehabilitated and all 18 have been re-homed.

"I don't care what comes to me; I will find a solution for that animal regardless."

In addition to financial donations, Paws 4 Life also appreciates donations of animal food, and needs wet kitten food in particular at the moment.

For more information or to donate visit www. or search Paws-4-Life on Facebook.

- Hamilton News

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