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Fire & Rescue Service called out to rescue 2300 animals since 2013

April 15, 2019 5:00 PM
Originally published by Scottish Liberal Democrats

Scottish Liberal Democrat animal welfare spokesperson Jenny Marr has today praised the Fire & Rescue Service for their diligent and tireless work supporting communities across Scotland, after new research by the Scottish Liberal Democrats revealed the service responded to 2276 callouts for animal-related emergencies between 2013 and 2018.

The statistics also reveal fire and rescue services were forced to rescue animals from cars or other vehicles on close to 90 separate occasions and responded to 144 callouts for instances of animal harm.

In response to a freedom of information request from the Scottish Liberal Democrats, the Scottish Fire & Rescue Service revealed:

  • Wild animals (horse, deer, wildfowl, game, aquatic, exotic, etc.) were rescued from a range of locations including a takeaway in Inverness, public toilets, churches, supermarkets, skips and a theatre in Angus.
  • Domestic animals (cat, dog, rodents, horse, bird, etc.) were rescued from a range of locations including: sewage works, an electric power station in Dunfermline, a football stadium in Cowdenbeath, golf courses, mines and quarries and a nightclub in Leith.
  • Livestock animals (horse, cow, sheep, goat, pig, poultry, fish, exotic, etc.) were rescued from a range of locations including: passenger trains, allotments and wheelie bins.

Firefighters were called out to Edinburgh Zoo twice in 2018. On one of the visits they helped rescue a rhino which was stuck in a tyre.

Scottish Liberal Democrat animal welfare spokesperson Jenny Marr added:

"These statistics show the Fire and Rescue Service undertakes a huge amount of unseen work rescuing thousands of trapped or mistreated animals, as just one small strand of their innumerable responsibilities.

"It's alarming to discover the fire and rescue service is responding to so many counts of animal harm. Any abuse of vulnerable wild animals, pets or livestock is intolerable and should be met by the full force of the law.

"This is also further evidence of the need to increase the maximum penalty for the most serious animal cruelty offences from 12 months to five years in prison."