Robbers hit Khayelitsha animal clinic, holding up staff at gunpoint
Armed robbers hit the Mdzananda Animal Clinic in Khayelitsha, Cape Town, on Wednesday.
"This has resulted in even more emotional and financial stress, over and above their lockdown difficulties," said fundraising and communications manager Marcelle du Plessis.
"We keep our gates closed during lockdown to reduce people coming on site and spreading the coronavirus. We take pets at the gate - most small pets can fit through our gate's bars. The only times we open the gate is to allow a big dog in or out, for goods deliveries and our vehicles," she said.
On Wednesday, a staff member opened the pedestrian gate to "hand a big dog back to his owner after receiving treatment".
"This is when a group of armed men pushed through the gate," said Du Plessis.
Among the items stolen were laptops and three cellphones from staff members. Cash collected during the day from food sales and consultation fees was also taken.
Du Plessis said everyone was "shaken" by the robbery, adding that security would be beefed up - although this will come at a cost.
"We would like to reconfigure our cameras and get a security guard at our gate. We would also like to alter our gate to include a smaller 'dog gate'. Pets can then be placed through this gate so that we do not need to open our pedestrian gate," said general manager Susan Wishart.
"However, the reality is that we will have to open our gates at some point during the day to let our staff vehicles and our ambulance in and out. This will be a large expense."
The clinic was set to reopen on Thursday May 7.
For anyone wanting to help the organisation, donations can be made to: Mdzananda Animal Clinic, Standard Bank savings account 075595710, branch: Rondebosch 025009, Reference: robbery + your name.