25th April 2019
At a meeting of the members of Friends of the Dogs (Wales) on 12th March, 2019 the following Dissolution Resolution was passed with no objections....
"That we close the charity forthwith, giving both Cardiff Council and Newport City Council the opportunity to consider their options for the provision the statutory obligations for their stray dog services"
"That we set up a Legacy Fund for the veterinary care and treatment of the stray and abandoned dogs in Cardiff Dogs Home and Newport City Dogs Home for a period of two years, or until the fund is spent. Fund to be administered via Transfer of Assets to a charity (The Dogs Trust) which has agreed to administer the Fund".
With effect from 30th April, 2019, the Charity, Friends of the Dogs (Wales) will be dissolved.
Members Meeting, 12th March 2019
In 2017 the Dogs Trust announced plans to open a new rehoming facility in Cardiff, including kennel provision for the intake of stray dogs.
Dogs Trust (Click the link for information about the new Dogs Trust Rehoming Centre)
This represents everything we have ever wanted for the strays. Modern, fit for purpose kennelling, on site veterinary care, training facilities, staff/dog ratio’s that reflect appropriate levels of care for dogs, and in particular vulnerable dogs, elderly dogs, whelping bitches and puppies.
At a meeting of the Planning Committee in 2017, the proposal was met with unanimous support by Cardiff Council.
Planning, passed unanimously
Friends of the Dogs (Wales), Our Position
Friends of the Dogs (Wales) would like to voice their support for the proposed development of a Dogs Trust Rehoming Centre in Cardiff, and in particular for the provision of a modern kennel facility for stray dogs.
Our primary constitutional concern is a continuing commitment to the welfare and wellbeing of stray and abandoned dogs. Local authorities all over Wales, and indeed the UK, are under continual pressure to examine expenditure, cut costs, and seek alternative operating models for the provision of statutory services. We feel that any investment our charity might make in modernising the current facilities at Cardiff Dogs Home could be at risk if future administrations decided to seek to an alternative provision and potential dispose of the buildings. More importantly, if it was decided at some future time to use private contractors to reduce costs this could result in an increase in the number of dogs euthanised on economic grounds. One of the overriding objectives of one of the local authorities in particular is to reduce their statutory spend, which we believe will impact negatively on the welfare and well-being of the animals in their care, and puts increasing financial burden on our Charity to carry out basic maintenance and repair work, replacement of essential equipment etc, which is not our core purpose.
We recently reported the proposed Dogs Trust development on our social media pages, and the response from our supporters and followers was wholehearted in support of the proposed site.
We do not feel it is in the best interests of the stray and abandoned dogs in South Wales to compete with the facilities, resources, infrastructure and expertise of the Dogs Trust for the stray dog provision in Cardiff.
The Trustees therefore propose that…
That we close the charity forthwith, giving both Cardiff Council and Newport City Council the opportunity to consider their options for the provision the statutory obligations for their stray dog services.
Our main consideration going forward is that both centres we support have a period of grace in which to consider their options for the provision of stray dogs services without compromising the welfare of the strays in the meantime.
We therefore propose to set up a Legacy Fund by way of a Transfer of Assets (which will be in the region of £50,000) for the veterinary care and treatment of the stray and abandoned dogs in Cardiff Dogs Home and Newport City Dogs Home for a period of two years, or until the fund is spent. Fund to be administered via Transfer of Assets to The Dogs Trust, which has agreed to administer the Fund solely for the payment of veterinary treatment and support for the stray and abandoned dogs in the two local authority pounds, Cardiff Dogs Home and Newport City Dogs Home.
The Trustees have requested that the Charities Commission remove Friends of the Dogs (Wales) from the CC register. We are required to state how the Trustees are satisfied that this is in the best interests of the charity.
How are the trustees satisfied that this is in the best interests of the charity?
The Trustees have held several meetings over the past 12 months with officers from the two Local Authority Dog pounds we primarily support. We have discussed at length their short, medium and long term plans for the provision of stray dog services, and how we can continue to fulfil our Charity's Objects within those parameters. One of the overriding objectives of one of those local authorities is to reduce their statutory spend, which we believe will impact negatively on the welfare and wellbeing of the animals in their care, and puts increasing financial burden on our Charity to carry out basic maintenance and repair work, replacement of essential equipment etc, which is not our core purpose.
We have also met several times with the CEO and other executives of a £100m National Charity (Dogs Trust) who are currently building a modern and world class rehoming facility in Cardiff. The Dogs Trust plans include provision for taking in stray and abandoned dogs. They have shared with us their site plans and the facilities which will be available. The plans, expertise, infrastructures, onsite veterinary care, modern kennelling facilities, staff to dog ratio's, education suites, hydro facilities, and training rooms that the Dogs Trust are offering to provide is everything we as a Charity have ever wanted for the stray and abandoned dogs, and it would be folly not to welcome and support this opportunity for the future wellbeing of stray dogs in Cardiff.
The Dogs Trust centre is due to open their doors in about two years’ time, and in the interim the Trustees want to ensure that the dogs in the care of the local authority continue to receive the veterinary care they need, without which their futures would be uncertain at best, and at worst they would face euthanasia.
The Dogs Trust have agreed to accept a transfer of assets from our Charity, and to hold these funds and administer them to pay for the emergency and routine veterinary care for the dogs in the two local authority pounds we support for a period of two years, or until the funds are used up. Any residual fund after the period of two years will be free for the Dogs Trust to use as they deem fit and proper. As a Charity their aims and objects are perfectly synchronised with ours, albeit we are a small local charity, and they are a world-wide organisation.
The Trustees are in complete agreement that everything we ever wanted for the strays in Cardiff can and will be fulfilled when the Dogs Trust Centre opens in two years’ time, and in the interim it is imperative that the funds we currently hold for the lifesaving veterinary treatment of dogs are not depleted due to the dilapidations in the current facility held by the local authority.
The Trustees would like to express their grateful thanks to everyone who has supported, contributed, and helped us over the last eight years. The day-to-day lives of the strays in both Cardiff and Newport have improved immeasurably. Both Cardiff and Newport Dogs Home have been transformed from 'local authority pounds' - with all the unpleasant connotations those words conjure - to welcoming rehoming centres committed to the care and safety of the stray and abandoned dogs in our communities.
This is the end of an era. But it is also the herald of new beginnings for the lives of stray dogs in Cardiff. Everything we have ever wished for them could be a reality; the Dogs Trust have offered to provide a world class facility for our strays and this is something to celebrate and welcome.