The RSPCA is appealing for information after a gerbil in his cage was abandoned “like a piece of rubbish” in a skip.

A member of the public contacted the RSPCA on Tuesday (18 April) after finding the gerbil in the skip in Prescelly Close, Nuneaton.GerbilCollage.jpg

The gerbil is now in the care of the RSPCA.

RSPCA inspector Louise Marston said: “This is so sad and it sickens me that someone just threw the gerbil in the skip to die, as though he was a piece of rubbish.

“He had water in his bottle, but the cage in general was quite dirty. It is pretty clear that whoever did this did so knowing that the gerbil was in there.

“If he hadn’t have been found, he would have died a horrible death. The skip wasn’t even full, so a lot of extra rubbish would have been thrown on top of this poor gerbil, if he hadn’t have been found. Thankfully he is recovering now – he is very lucky.”

Anyone with information about who abandoned the gerbil should contact the RSPCA on 0300 123 8018, and leave a message for Inspector Marston.

“If someone gets a pet then they need to realise that they have to commit to being responsible for the animal throughout their life,” added Inspector Marston. “It is terrible to think that someone thought they could just through the gerbil away because they no longer wanted him.”

Last month, the RSPCA released its annual Cruelty Statistics, which showed that animal cruelty complaints across England and Wales had increased by 3.5%. In Warwickshire, the number of animal cruelty complaints inspectors investigated in 2016 was 1,307 – up from 1,280 in 2015 and an increase of 2.1%.

Dermot Murphy, Assistant Director of the RSPCA Inspectorate, said: “It never fails to shock me when I look back on the extreme instances of animal cruelty the RSPCA has been called upon to investigate.

“It continues to outrage and sadden me that people can be capable of such deliberate brutality towards animals, but equally it drives me on to ensure that perpetrators of animal cruelty are put before the courts.

“I believe that the figures from last year show that we’re not becoming crueler, but that people are simply less willing to stand by and do nothing if they think an animal is suffering.

“People are increasingly likely to share images or footage on their social media accounts of animals they believe are not being cared for properly, while many will see material their friends have shared and then contact us about them.”

The RSPCA is a charity and we rely on public donations to exist. To assist our inspectors in carrying out their vital work please text HELP to 78866 to give £3. (Texts cost £3 + one standard network rate message.)