THIS YEAR one of Ireland’s oldest Societies of Prevention of Cruelty to Animals celebrates its 140th anniversary.
Founded in 1882 by the Marquis and Marchioness of Ormonde, the Kilkenny SPCA was set up to promote the welfare of all animals, domestic and wild.
First meeting was in Kilkenny Castle on April 25, 1882 and the society became a registered charity in 1937.
Today the charity is one of 17 affiliated member societies of the Irish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ISPCA), of which the Kilkenny SPCA was one of the founding members.
Animal Welfare Officer and Board Member Noel O’Donoghue said told Kilkenny Press:
“Our aim today is the same as it was in 1882; to improve the welfare of all animals.
Even though attitudes towards animals have changed greatly, and for the better over the last 140 years, unfortunately there remains a minority that continues to abuse and neglect animals.
“We’ve been a part of the history of Kilkenny for so long but it feels like a case of quietly operating in the background.
“For example, the horse trough on The Parade was commissioned by Kilkenny SPCA in 1902. People pass it lots of times every day and probably never think about its origins.
WATER FOR HORSES AND DOGS
“It is unique as it was designed to provide water to horses at the upper part and for dogs on lower parts.
“Originally there were three troughs, one in Irishtown and one in Dungarvan, but sadly they are no longer there.
“We are staffed by volunteers and rely on donations from the public and corporate sector, as well as membership contributions to survive.”
“We have gratefully received a small grant from the Department of Agriculture, Food & The Marine in recent years,” added fellow board member Ciara Murphy.
“Our sincere thanks goes to the people of the City and County of Kilkenny, as the society wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for the generosity of the people over the decades.
“People can make a secure donation on our website that will help to fund veterinary care for sick or injured animals and their rehabilitation, our ability to attend accidents involving any animal, neutering services and the investigation of reported incidents of animal neglect and abuse.
“We hope to be still helping sick and injured animals for another 140 years and to do this we’ll need the public’s financial support.”