Dog charity 'desperate' forced to treat animals in car park
AN animal charity has to treat animals in a shopping centre car park as their base is due for demolition.
Last night, Dogs Aid Ballymun treated up to 50 dogs in the car park of Ballymun Shopping Centre after having to leave their former premises in one of the local blocks due for demolition.
Organisers say they will have to run a 'side-of-the-road' clinic until they find a permanent location.
Since then, the charity, which has been active in the North Dublin suburb for more than 20 years, have been searching for a new base.
They have the money - but are having difficulty finding premises suitable in which sick animals can be treated, according to charity spokeswoman Áine McAnally.
"This is the second week we've had to essentially run a side-of-the-road clinic. The clinic is homeless," she said.
"We're desperately searching for new premises within Ballymun. We're desperate to stay here. This is where we're needed. We're now in our third generation of families coming in to see us with their pets.
"We have rent money. We're appealing to anybody that knows of anywhere that we could rent that would be happy to rent to us."
The charity had to put two elderly and ill dogs to sleep at the side of a road last weekend, which Ms McAnally said was a very rare occurrence and not one they wish to repeat any time soon.
She added that if no alternative location for the clinic is sorted in the near future, they will be back in the car park next week.
Ballymun local Tracy Whelan, who regularly uses the charity's services for her two pooches, said she is very angry with the position the charity is in and has written letters to help them improve their circumstance.
"I think it's a disgrace. They provide a brilliant service and they're brilliant staff," she said.
"I'm very angry. I've emailed DCC [Dublin City Council] and it's just a real standard email that they're sending back to people. They're not really listening to the people of Ballymun."
A Facebook support group for the charity has already gathered close to 1,000 supporters.