Thousands raised for Carmarthenshire animal rescue centre after 'catastrophic damage'

'I was more scared than I ever have been before', owner Sylvia van Atta describes how Storm Arwen ripped through the rescue centre

More than £60,000 has been raised to help fund repairs at an animal rescue centre after it was left with "catastrophic damage" during Storm Arwen.

Many Tears Animal Rescue, near Cross Hands, was left without power for several hours, which also resulted in the death of a puppy.

Owner Sylvia van Atta said the 10-day-old puppy died after becoming too cold.

The centre was due to hold an open day to raise donations to fund vital treatment for one of their rescue dogs, but issued a statement cancelling the event.

10-week-old Florence was the smallest puppy in her litter and required extra care and monitoring. Credit: Many Tears Animal Rescue

In a social media post on Saturday morning, a spokesperson said: "We have been without power since the early hours, buildings are destroyed and we are devastated that one puppy has died.

"The new classroom we have spent so long creating is in pieces with debris flying dangerously in the winds.

"We have suffered major structural damage and loss of life so we are absolutely devastated right now and must cancel our open day as the premises are not safe and we must concentrate on the repairs and our dogs."

Sylvia van Atta runs the rescue centre near Cross Hands, Carmarthenshire. Credit: Many Tears Animal Rescue

In a video posted online, Sylvia described how the home had been affected.

"It's been the most terrible night ever. We've had no electricity and the most terrible winds. They have ripped our roofs to pieces," they said.

"The classroom we spent so long building is just wrecked. There's metal sheets and they were flying around last night and are still flying around now.

"It's really hard to keep going, really, really hard.

"We lost one puppy because it was too cold and I couldn't keep it warm and it was failing.

"I know other people have losses too but this is losses for the animals and it's breaking my heart."

The centre currently houses around 120 animals, including dogs, cats and horses.

On Saturday morning, supporters donated hot water bottles to keep a litter of puppies warm, while local volunteers helped to rebuild some of the shelters.