The RSPCA is calling for pet owners across the UK to not just abandon their pets this summer. It comes as the charity saw a significant rise in people going away on holiday and leaving their pets home alone.

As more people makes plans to pack up and go abroad, the RSPCA is worried that many will not make the same preparations for their furry companions. Inspectors with the charity are getting calls to come to houses that have been left for a holiday with a pet inside with nothing more than food.

The RSPCA has reported that these incidents significantly increase during the summer months. Not only is this unacceptable and irresponsible, but it also against the law. Under the Animal Welfare Act pet owners have a legal responsibility to ensure their pets' welfare is seen to and to provide care for all the animal's needs at all times, which includes when on holiday.

From the start of May, the RSPCA has received more than 1,500 cases of pets being abandoned and the charity takes a call to help the welfare of an animal in distress every 30 seconds on average.

RSPCA superintendent Richard Seddon said: "Being left home alone with a pile of food does not mean their needs are being taken care of. Owners don’t want to get a call while they are lying on the beach to tell them to come back home to take care of their pet so we are saying – make proper arrangements for someone to care for your pet or put them in pet boarding.

"To leave a much loved family pet for days at a time with just a pile of food that may go off especially in this hot weather may endanger the animal’s life and is simply not common sense."

It's important to be a responsible dog owner and not commit to a holiday until you have sorted out proper care for your pet. This could include a trustworthy friend or family member looking after the dog or putting your pet in kennels for the time you are away.

Written by: Hannah