We have struggled to make the best decision possible, both for the rescue and ourselves during this time.
As more information comes through, and in light of the fact that I am asthmatic, and my Mum is asthmatic and over 70, we have made the very difficult decision to suspend all adoptions from Saturday 28th, for the next 12 weeks, and we will not be accepting any further adoption applications from this point forward. Added to this we will also be asking all of our amazing volunteers to remain at home during this time.
This has not been an easy decision to make. Without our team of volunteers I will be here alone caring for the animals, which between the rescue and our own pets totals around 70. However, should I become unwell, as their main caregiver, their welfare will be seriously compromised. Remaining healthy and able to provide day to day care is vitally important.
Preventing the animals in our care from finding their forever homes is heartbreaking for us. However, we feel that difficulties with arranging homechecks and arranging appointments to collect animals is already hindering adoptions and in light of the latest advice for those suffering with asthma, we feel that suspending adoptions is our only option.
As for surrendering animals, the same concerns with visitors to the centre apply and with the need for vet visits for vaccinations and health checks on arrival, we feel that we would be putting ourselves at further risk. As I will be here alone, we feel that keeping the numbers as low as possible is in the best interests of the animals in my care. We are also concerned with funding over the coming months, with so many unable to work at present. Nibbles is totally reliant on your regular monthly support to stay open and keep the animals fed and cared for. Our priority here is to ensure that the animals in our care have everything they need to remain happy and healthy. So with so many unknowns with regard to how this crisis is going to affect our funding we don't feel comfortable adding further animals at this time.
We also feel that the UK is heading towards a lock down scenario in the near future and would rather be ahead of such an outcome when/if it comes and prepared that I will be the sole carer for all the animals here. With this in mind, I will not be able to care for the animals and keep the admin side of the rescue up and running. So from 2pm on Saturday we will no longer be answering emails and due to volunteer absences (not due to ill health) and vacancies the phone won't be operating from this point forward.
As I have said, this has not been an easy decision to make. Our main concern is for the animals who need me to provide care for them and I need to remain healthy to be able to provide that care.
I know lots of people are struggling with difficult decisions at this time, and are trying to do all that they can in line with government advice. We wish all our supporters good health and well wishes during this very difficult and scary time.