Minister of State at the Department of Agriculture Martin Heydon has welcomed the record level of funding awarded to 98 animal welfare organisations this week.

A total of €3.7m will be allocated to the organisations, including two in Kildare The KWWSPCA Animal Shelter (€34,500) and My Lovely Horse Rescue (€26,250), to support their ongoing efforts in the area of animal welfare in Kildare.

Minister Heydon said: “I am delighted to be part of my Department’s strong show of support for the work carried out by the many animal welfare organisations across the country. They play an important role in ensuring all animals are cared for and protected. It is work that they can all be proud of.

“This is the largest award of grant funding to animal welfare bodies ever made by the Department and will make a real difference to the welfare of animals nationwide. This is in line with our commitments in the Programme for Government.

“This year we launched the Animal Welfare Strategy 2021-2025 and over the coming years I look forward to progressing the actions in that strategy. “

Ahead of Christmas, he also asked people to think carefully before getting a pet.

“Animals come with responsibility. Owning and caring for a pet is a major, long-term commitment.  I would urge everyone to please think carefully before deciding to buy a puppy or kitten this Christmas. There is excellent advice on my Department’s website and from many of the welfare organisations that should be consulted first.”