West Cumbria Cats’ Protection League has received a boost to help owners reunite with their deceased pets.

The organisation received £429.80 following a presentation from Pets at Home, based at Workington.

West Cumbria Cats’ Protection has now given Copeland Council six scanners to help staff reunite pet owners with their animals’ remains.

The devices will be used if council street cleaning teams come across a dead pet, which they can scan to see if it has a microchip.

The owner can then be informed.

Copeland’s head of waste and enforcement, Janice Carroll, said: “We are very grateful to the Cats’ Protection for the donation of this equipment.

"It can be very upsetting when an animal goes missing and often people would prefer to know what has happened to their pet. We often come across animals that have, sadly, died, often on roads.

“This will mean that, if they are chipped, we can return them to their owners. Some of our staff already have scanners to scan stray dogs, but this means our street cleaning staff will always have one to hand when they come across a dead pet.”

Staff will return the pet to Copeland’s depot and the owner will be informed – they can then choose to collect the pet if they wish.

Mrs Carroll added: “We would always encourage people to get their animals microchipped.

"It saves a lot of heartache when they get lost and even when they they have been killed, it at least means the owner can be reunited with their pet.”