'Poor beardie' abandoned in cold and wet weather

The beardie was found inside a box on a street in Gosport Credit: RSPCA

An RSPCA officer has condemned the cruelty of whoever abandoned a lizard which was found in a box in Albert Street in Gosport.

The bearded dragon was found by a man who took in home and contacted the animal welfare authorities. It is now being cared for by RSPCA staff at an animal centre.

'Beardies', as they are affectionately named are among the top five types of reptiles that are being collected by the RSPCA or handed in to its centres.

Anyone with information about the bearded dragon can contact ACO Preston via the inspector appeal line on 0300 123 8018.

The RSPCA says that the number of calls it receives about reptiles has doubled over a 10-year period. The organisation's officers are regularly being called to take charge of reptiles that have been dumped, or neglected such as corn snakes, terrapins, tortoises, leopard geckos and royal pythons. The organisation believes that is because owners either no longer want the animals or cannot care for them properly.

There is more information about bearded dragons and caring for them on the RSPCA website.