The number of animal cruelty reports in Wyndham increased by a quarter during the last financial year compared to the previous 12 months, according to RSPCA Victoria.

The animal welfare agency has revealed that it received a total of 11,638 animal cruelty reports – averaging 31 per day – during the 2018-19 financial year.

During the timeframe, Wyndham recorded 364 cruelty reports (compared to 294 reports in the 2017-18 financial year).

This placed Wyndham at seventh-highest for animal cruelty reports, out of all Victoria’s municipalities. Greater Geelong topped the list, with 617 cruelty reports (compared to 584 previously).

RSPCA Victoria chief executive Dr Liz Walker said that across the state, concerns about neglect made up the highest proportion of cruelty reports, indicating many animals were not receiving the most basic standard of care, such as sufficient food, water and shelter.

“Neglect is a form of cruelty, and it is heartbreaking to know so many animals continue to suffer across our state due to lack of basic care,” Dr Walker said.

“The 2018-19 animal cruelty report statistics clearly illustrate the need for further education and for people to seek help if they are having trouble providing basic care for their animals.

“Looking at these figures, it’s easy to feel disheartened. However, it’s affirming that each individual report made to our Inspectorate represents a person who has acted on their concern for an animal.

“The individuals who make these reports give voice to vulnerable animals who can’t speak for themselves.”

See services/inspectorate/report-cruelty to report concerns about animal treatment.