WONDER OF WORTHING: Dog wardens win RSPCA gold award

Worthing dog warden team, Keith Walden with Blaze, Eileen Howitt and Russ Akehurst with Poppy''Picture by Gerald Thompson W42263H10.

THE RSPCA has presented Worthing Borough Council with a gold award for the work it does to prevent and look after stray dogs.

The council scooped the top gold mark in the RSPCA’s Community Stray Dog Footprint awards – one of only two councils in Sussex, and 11 in the UK, to reach the gold standard.

Worthing dog warden Russ Akehurst has been invited to the House of Lords to be congratulated by the RSPCA.

Russ said: “It’s good that our standard of service to stray dogs has been recognised by the RSPCA.

“Last year, in our first year of entering, we achieved silver, so to be awarded gold this year is really special.”

The RSPCA was impressed by the comprehensive policies and procedures the council has in place to look after stray dogs in and out of hours.

When a stray dog is reported to the council, it is Russ’s job to check if it has been micro-chipped.

If it has, then it is returned to the owner. If it has not, the animal is taken to the council’s holding kennels.

Dog owners who collect their dog from the kennels are offered micro chipping, which the council arranges for £15.

Borough cabinet member for clean, green environment, Clive Roberts, said: “This is an outstanding achievement and recognition of an excellent service.

“Congratulations to Russ and all the team. And while we are on the subject of dogs, I’d like to let residents know that we will be consulting on dog control orders in the near future.”

Stray dogs found in Worthing can be reported 24 hours a day, seven days a week, by calling 01903 221410 during office hours or 01903 821992 on evenings and weekends.

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