5 July 2022

RSPCA WA is calling for nominations in its annual Animal Welfare Awards, with heroic and caring humans, as well as furry and feathered friends, set to be celebrated.

Community members are encouraged to put forward deserving groups and individuals working to save animal lives and improve their welfare. Animals have their own special category, designed to spotlight the human-animal bond and how this impacts positively on communities. RSPCA WA Chair Lynne Bradshaw AM

RSPCA WA Chair Lynne Bradshaw AM (pictured, right) said the awards showcased the compassion and dedication of WA’s animal welfare warriors. 

‘We know these people and groups don’t do it for the recognition, but it’s important we pause and acknowledge their incredible efforts,’ she said.  

‘Highlighting this work also has the potential to inspire others to treat animals with kindness.’

Ms Bradshaw said, of the six categories, the Animal Award had proved especially popular last year, and had unearthed many heart-warming tales.

‘We saw powerful examples of the human-animal bond last year, from pets who had turned their owners’ lives around, to therapy animals positively impacting their communities,’ she said.

The category has already received its first standout nomination for 2022: Winston, WA’s first ever Justice Facility Dog (pictured, below).

Since September 2021, Winston has been easing stress and anxiety in Perth’s Children’s Court three to four days a week, with his gentle nature and wagging tail.

Commissioner for Victims of Crime Kati Kraszlan, who nominated Winston, said the black Labrador had changed the mood WA in the waiting room for victims, witnesses and other court users.

‘Court staff report that Winston is very intuitive at picking up when a child wants playful interaction or just a quiet cuddle with him,’ she said.

‘Court attendees actively seek him out during their waiting period, and legal and support service providers often call upon Winston to support their clients.’

Nominating an amazing animal like Winston, or a heroic human, is quick and easy. Just visit www.rspcawa.org.au/awards 

You’ll also find more information about the six award categories, which are: Animal Award; Humane Award; Youth Award; Community Action Award; Volunteer of the Year Award; and Agriculture Award. 

Recipients will be recognised at a special ceremony on Tuesday 4 October for World Animal Day.