A HEALTHY dog has been put down after the stress of living in kennels for so long proved too much for him to cope with.

Last month, the Adver reported that several dogs at the council-owned dog pound at Drove Veterinary Hospital were facing the death penalty as the pound reached crisis point.

Following the appeal, the pound was inundated with readers wanting to offer a home to the dogs, but many were unsuitable for a number of reasons and one of the dogs has now had to be put down.

Environmental protection officer Alison Waine said she does not expect the situation to get any better any time soon and any of the dogs who have completed seven days at the pound could potentially be at risk of being destroyed if staff were to run out of room.

“It is such a shame but I do think it is the shape of things to come,” she said.

“Of the three brindle staffies we had, we found one a home through the Adver article, one has gone to rescue and, sadly, one had to be put to sleep.

“Although he was a very friendly dog, the stress of kennels proved too much for him and he started to grab at the kennel staff.

“He wasn’t being aggressive but it was becoming dangerous and we had no option but to have him destroyed.

“Sadly, this is a typical story for the staffies – they do not cope well in kennels as they want to be with people so much, and sometimes behaviour like this can come out.

“It is not just staffies that do this of course, but because they spend longer in kennels than any other breed, they are prone to kennel stress.”

The difficulty in rehoming bull breeds was highlighted last month, and, in a bid to alleviate the problem, staff launched an appeal for volunteers to help foster the dogs so they do not have to spend so long in kennels.

Alison said they had had a positive response to the appeal.

“We had a good result once again and we are ploughing through the details and hopefully over the next couple of weeks we can get some structure set up,” she said.

“We have also had some good news in the shape of a small Jack Russell that has gone back to his owner.

“He was stolen a month ago in Reading and the owner has been frantically searching for him.

“Through a lost dog website we managed to marry the two up and an extremely grateful and excited owner rushed out of work to come and collect Dexter.

“His heavily pregnant wife came too despite being due to give birth on Sunday, and thankfully the only waters that broke were her tears of joy.”

Anyone interested in volunteering to foster a dog should email dogwarden@swindon.gov.uk.