Second chance needs help

Nurse Caitlin Corrigan with 12wk old domestic medium hair cat named Will Ferral. (Joe Mastroianni) 206669_02

By Laura Michell

A Craigieburn animal shelter could be forced to close its doors as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

Second Chance Animal Rescue (SCAR), which opened a new shelter, community animal hospital and cattery in Grasslands Avenue late last year, has noticed a drop in pet adoptions and donations in recent weeks.

Founder Marisa Debattista said the shelter was also operating with a skeleton workforce, with a number of employees in isolation for two weeks after returning from overseas.

She said the charity was struggling financially to look after its animals and stay afloat.

“This means we may have to close the shelter temporarily and if things don’t improve, possible forever,” she said.

“We at Second Chance are seriously feeling the effect [of the coronavirus pandemic] as people stay home to protect themselves, fewer animals being adopted, less people willing to foster and the hardest hitting of all; less people donating to our cause.”

Ms Debattista said the shelter relied heavily on donations and cannot do its work without them.

The charity has launched a fundraising appeal, urging people to donate if they can.

“If I can ask anyone who supports the lifesaving work we do at SCAR to donate $5 or more – the amount of a cup of coffee – it could seriously save our organisation, and in doing so, the lives of thousands of cats and dogs and keep loved pets in homes and out of pounds where they will likely die,” Ms Debattista said.

“We have helped so many pets and their owners in their times of need and now we need your help…[to] stop us going under in the crisis month ahead.”

To donate to Second Chance Animal Rescue, visit: