More Care for your Canine events have been lined up for the summer, offering dog owners the chance to have their dog microchipped for free.
The extra dates were added following the success of the last event, which attracted more than 200 dog owners and their pooches last December.
The first two-day event will take place outside The Place (Pitsea Leisure Centre) on Wednesday 16 and Thursday 17 May from 11am to 3pm. The next event will take place in Laindon on Wednesday 20 and Thursday 21 June from 11am to 4pm at the Laindon Link side of Markhams Chase playing fields.
The event, which is run by Basildon Council in partnership with the RSPCA, aims to promote responsible pet ownership after Basildon was highlighted as having one of the highest figures for stray dog and animal welfare issues in the country.
Discounted neutering vouchers can also be picked up for Staffordshire Bull Terriers (and crosses) at the event, which are regularly seized as strays in Basildon. The vouchers will help stop unwanted puppies and can help improve the behaviour of the dogs.
Dog owners who are on benefits will be able to pick up the vouchers to have their dog neutered for just £30 (normally around £150) as well as free flea/worming treatments while stocks last.
The council’s animal control team, officers from the RSPCA and a dog behaviourist will also be on hand offering advice about canine care and improving the behaviour of unruly dogs.
Cllr Richard Moore, cabinet member with responsibility for animal control, said: “The last Care for your Canine event we ran was very successful and we microchipped and treated hundreds of dogs for fleas and worms.
“Many dog owners do not realise how expensive and time consuming dogs can be and all too often we see dogs abandoned for conditions or behaviour which could easily be treated.
“We hope that these events will help promote responsible pet ownership and help residents who are struggling with the ongoing costs of keeping a dog by providing free microchipping, discounted neutering vouchers and advice and support.”
Anyone wishing to receive the neutering vouchers or flea/worming treatments will need to bring proof of benefits entitlement and identification.
For more information on caring for your canine, visit www.basildon.gov.uk/caninecare
PHOTO: Cllr Mowe with his dog Oscar, Cllr Moore, Tom Millson from Acresway Kennels with Bones, and children’s Partyman entertainer