HUNDREDS of calls over animal neglect were received by the RSPCA in mid and north Wales, fresh figures have revealed, with the animal welfare charity fielding a neglected animal report from somewhere in the UK every five minutes.

New figures from the animal welfare charity show that, up to the end of October, its dedicated emergency line had received 43,360 reports of neglect.

In Wales alone, the charity received 2,904 reports about neglected animals in the first 10 months of this year.

In Ceredigion, RSPCA officers received 84 neglect reports, while in neighbouring Carmarthenshire that figure rose to 218.

RSPCA officers in Gwynedd received 134 neglect reports, with officers in Powys receiving 157.

The new UK-wide statistics have been released as part of the charity’s Join the Christmas Rescue campaign - aiming to support its frontline staff ahead of what could be a “bleak” winter season for pets and other animals.

The charity said the figures reveal the “scale” of neglect across the country.

In the first ten months of the year, the line had been open for 3,474 hours - meaning it averages 12.5 calls about neglect every single hour, or one report every 288 seconds.

The number of reports the charity had about neglect in October (4,387) - was also higher than the number in that month of 2022 (3,818), 2021 (4,186) and 2020 (3,931).

The figures show neglect incidents shooting up by 14.9 per cent compared to last year.

The data follows previous statistics suggesting calls about abandoned animals are at a three-year high, with the charity expecting to receive more than 21,400 calls about unwanted and dumped animals this year too.

Dermot Murphy, RSPCA inspectorate commissioner, said: “Thousands of animals’ lives are hanging in the balance this Christmas with animal neglect reports a real cause for concern - including in Wales.

“Across the board, our emergency line is getting a call about a neglected animal every 288 seconds.

“Combine those levels of neglect with rising abandonments, the cost of living crisis, and the cold weather this winter, and we fear this could be a very bleak time for animals.

“But there is hope. Our frontline officers work tirelessly to bring neglected animals to safety - and it’s the kind-hearted public who power these rescue efforts.

“This winter, our rescue teams are set to be very busy trying to help and reach so many neglected animals - which is why we need animal lovers to join the Christmas rescue now more than ever, and donate to help us be there for neglected animals in their time of need.”