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RSPCA North Wales Clinic buys life-saving X-ray machine

An RSPCA clinic in North Wales, which treated more than 3,000 animals during the first nationwide COVID-19 lockdown, finally has a potentially life-saving X-ray machine – more than 50 years after the idea was discussed for the first time.

The Clwyd and Colwyn branch of the RSPCA has thanked supporters whose generous donations have helped pay for the equipment, which will be used to carry out potentially life-saving examinations on pets and wildlife at its clinic on Vaughan Street in Rhyl.

Following the launch of the x-ray appeal last autumn, £15,000 was raised, plus an extra to cover the cost of fitting out a room with special radiation-controlled ceilings and walls – paid for by the animal lovers, businesses, heirlooms and RSPCA branches nearby.

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Branch Clinic Director Kieren Barlow said: “We are so grateful to everyone who stepped up to help us reach our goal of £12,000 and beyond.

“This much-needed equipment means we can quickly treat and diagnose animals on the spot – and potentially save lives – rather than having to refer people to private veterinary practices as we have had to do in the past.

“The idea of ​​having an x-ray machine was first brought up by one of our volunteers in the 1970s, so seeing it come to fruition after all that time has been a dream come true for us.

“It’s a huge boost for us and for animal welfare in North Wales.”

Rhyl’s secondary clinic offers affordable veterinary care, including neutering and microchipping, to pets whose owners receive state benefits or have lower annual incomes, and covers the whole of North Wales.

It also provides lifesaving care to a wide range of sick and injured wildlife brought in by rescuers and members of the public.

During the first national lockdown in 2020, the clinic received 28,000 calls and treated 2,171 dogs, 1,255 cats and 38 other animals.

This was largely due to many animal-related services being unable to remain open, so the clinic extended its reach to cover the whole of North Wales between March and September from that year, sometimes sending couriers to deliver medicine across a wide region.

The RSPCA’s network of 152 branches are all affiliated with the national RSPCA, but each is an independent registered charity responsible for raising its own funds.

All money raised by the Clwyd and Colwyn branch goes directly to animal welfare work in the area.

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