The RSPCA is appealing for information after two gerbils were found dumped on a doorstep in Beeston, Nottingham on November 2.
The animals appeared to have been previously well cared for and were left in a large enclosure.
RSPCA inspector Daniel Holman collected the gerbils, and said: “We know times are tough at the moment for everyone but the answer is never to dump an animal.
“The RSPCA has resources to help if you are struggling to care for an animal during the cost of living crisis – including our new online Hub.
“Family and friends can often help and people struggling can even seek advice from a local charity or vet.
“We are grateful to the member of the public who was able to temporarily take these gerbils in until I arrived – the animals are now recovering in RSPCA care.
“If anyone does recognise these gerbils, or knows what may have happened here, they can ring the RSPCA confidentially on 0300 123 8018.”
The gerbils have been checked by a vet and are now being cared for at the RSPCA’s Derby Branch.
Sadly the RSPCA’s Animal Kindness Index found 28% of owners are worried about being able to care for their pets.
Daniel added: “With more people struggling, we expect more animals will be neglected and abandoned by owners who can no longer afford to care for them. And with fuel and energy costs rising, the cost of rescuing and caring for animals continues to increase too.
“Please don’t let animals pay the price of the cost of living crisis this Christmas. To Join the Winter Rescue and help our rescuers be there for the animals in need, please visit our webpage.”
To help the RSPCA continue rescuing, rehabilitating and rehoming animals in desperate need of care please visit our website or call our donation line on 0300 123 8181.