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By Tristan Harris Wednesday 18 June 2014 Updated: 18/06 12:52
A BROMSGROVE animal charity has expressed its outrage after it was alerted to children throwing stones and pouring fizzy drinks over a trapped hedgehog.
Willows Hedgehog Rescue was called out to the scene on Sunday (June 15) and managed to save the animal despite discovering him severely dehydrated, stressed and with worn away claws because he was trying to escape.
The hedgehog who has now been affectionately named Oliver, found himself stranded in a gully in Edgbaston and had reportedly been chased up and down by the cruel children who ran off when rescuers arrived.
Charlie Creek from the charity, expressed his shock at the incident.
"It just beggars belief to be honest," he said.
"How someone can start throwing stones at a hedgehog, I just can't get my head around it.
"There are some fantastic kids out there but incidents like this just represent mindless brutality.
"Hedgehogs are massively in decline and we should be respecting and protecting wildlife, not doing this sort of thing."
He said the charity was now working with police in the area, but stressed it was not about pursing possible punishments but getting the chance to speak to children and educate them.
"We want to talk to them about animal welfare and being responsible.
"Wildlife needs protection not persecution and we want to change the way people think," Charlie added.
He urged anyone who witnessed a hedgehog in distress to call the charity on 07518 354408 immediately, claiming sometimes people watched animals in dangerous situations for 'days'.
Charlie also reminded residents possibly afraid of confronting people who were performing cruel acts, that intentionally harming the welfare of animals was a crime and they were entitled to call police.
Finally he called on housing associations to be more aware of the potential problems for animals in designing housing estates, stressing the importance of including features such as slopes which would have helped creatures like Oliver escape from certain spaces.
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