Urgent appeal by animal hospital for donations to help care for hedgehogs over Christmas
A Sidlesham animal charity has issued an urgent appeal for food and supplies ahead of the festive period.
Brent Lodge Animal Hospital has seen a huge reduction in donations this year due the cancellation of fundraising events, and its food bill has increased by 60 per cent.
The charity is expecting to take in over 200 hedgehogs in the next few weeks, as well as hundreds of other wildlife casualties.
Fundraising manager Asha Park said: “Typically, from the end of summer to the start of winter we see a slight dip in patient numbers admitted to the hospital, however, this was not what we experienced this year, and we are still running at almost full capacity.
”We will mostly be providing over-winter support to sick, injured or underweight hedgehogs.
“Without our support, underweight hedgehogs are much less likely to survive their hibernation.
“The task of caring for hedgehogs is extremely labour intensive and the challenges of facing another busy season without volunteers are still ever-present.
“Each hedgehog is weighed and given a full general health check on arrival and administered a dose of flea and worming medication. Once in our care they are given fresh warm bedding and food each day – sometimes twice a day so they can reach a healthy weight for release in the spring.”
Brent Lodge is asking people to donate poultry flavoured pet food, cleaning supplies or other essential items to keep young hedgehogs warm, such as newspapers or Snugglesafe microwave heat pads for pets.
Asha said: “We can use most types of pet food, but our hedgehogs are very keen on poultry flavoured kitten mousse, wet/dry cat food or specialised moist hedgehog food.
“The brand is not important just as long as it is a good, healthy product to help get our hedgehogs fattened up for release.
“Please no added cheese or fish flavour food as it makes hedgehogs poorly.”
Donations can be dropped off at the hospital or delivered to: Brent Lodge Wildlife Hospital, Cow Lane, Sidlesham, PO20 7LN.
A full wishlist items can be found at www.brentlodge.org
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