Since February of 2020 My Pet Matters has been running bi-monthly prize draws for members of the public to win pet food for their furry friends.
We noticed that many entrants were stating that, if they won, they would like to donate their prize to their local animal rescue centre. In July this year, Tony won a supply of dog food and decided that, although he has a dog himself, he would donate some of his prize to two worthy causes, The Grey Muzzle Hospice and St. Giles Animal Rescue Centre.
With so many rescue centres having been hit hard by the pandemic, we felt compelled to help and launched a prize draw where people could enter and nominate a rescue centre to receive £400 worth of animal feed.
Our first winner in October 2021 was Kay, who nominated The Dogs Trust at Snetterton Rehoming Centre (see her story below).
Our latest Small Animal Shelters prize draw winner is Kathryn, who nominated Northern Greyhound Rescue, where about five years ago she found Katie, a Bull Lurcher who had been rescued after being abandoned. Kathryn says “Katie healed my broken heart after I’d lost my previous dog, Zita when she was over 18 years and 8 weeks old”.
Amanda and a small group of hard working volunteers run Northern Greyhound Rescue, which is a small registered charity in the North West/Lancashire area dedicated to improving the lives of Greyhounds and Lurchers. This is their story:
The dogs come to us from both licensed tracks and unregulated or 'flapping tracks' and we also take in stray hounds. The dogs are then housed in either foster homes or private boarding kennels until loving new homes can be found for them. We also look for new homes for dogs who for many reasons, generally through no fault of their own, can no longer stay in their present homes.
The majority of Greyhounds are retired from the race track by the time they reach five years old, sometimes a lot sooner if they are injured or simply 'don't make the grade'. Considering they have a life expectancy of twelve to fifteen years; they are still young dogs when they finish racing.
Greyhound Rescues around the country strive to save as many of the hounds and rehome where possible but unfortunately, due to the large numbers bred for racing each year, there will always be homeless hounds.
Greyhounds and Lurchers make fantastic pets and loving, loyal companions. Each has his own distinct personality, but as a whole they are amazingly adaptable, intelligent and placid dogs who love people.
As we are an independent organisation, we cover costs personally and through fundraising and donations. Volunteers are always needed and welcomed to help us out with fundraising, transportation etc.
Please visit our website at: www.northerngreyhoundrescue.org.uk
You can also find us on Facebook: www.facebook.com/NorthernGreyhoundRescue
My Pet Matters would like to say a huge thank you to Kathryn for her very kind, heart-felt nomination and we wish her and Katy all the best for the future. We would also like to say a massive ‘thank you’ to Northern Greyhound Rescue for the fantastic work they continue to do, please consider supporting them.
Our December winner was Samantha, who nominated The Cat’s Whiskers Rescue, a small foster based rescue in Aylesbury, Bucks. Samantha fosters rescued cats for The Cat’s Whiskers in her home until they can be re-homed.
The Cat’s Whiskers was founded and is run by Sarah, who told us about the challenges they have been facing:
“Run by a small but dedicated team we rescue and rehabilitate over a hundred cats each year, caring for them in our own homes until they are well enough to re-home. Funds are always tight, but we never turn a cat away if we can help and never put a cat to sleep unless absolutely medically necessary.
2020 and 2021 have been the most challenging years to date. The sheer volume of sick, abandoned and unwanted cats has been unprecedented. Our fundraising avenues dried up as lockdowns were enforced and restrictions made rescuing and rehoming even more difficult.
The support and love received from members of the public has seen us through and helped us survive, and this amazing prize from My Pet Matters is a wonderful way to finish the year. Thank you from all the team and the cats.”
Samantha told us:
"I’ve only been fostering for just under a year but all my poor cats have had medical issues that the rescue have taken care of. This includes my poor mum who went in for routine spay after her kittens and was found to have a reaction to her stitches and required further surgery.
Somehow Sarah manages every time to get the cats what they need.
Thank you again for the prize, it truly is so desperately needed."
My Pet Matters would like to thank Samantha for nominating such a worthy cause and wish The Cat’s Whiskers all the very best in the future.
Our first winner in October 2021 was Kay, who nominated The Dogs Trust at Snetterton Rehoming Centre
“I had no hesitation in choosing The Dogs Trust at Snetterton, Norfolk to receive the £400 as my partner’s dog came from there. I have visited the centre and I felt that that is where I would like the money to go."
This is Kay’s story……
"Over four years ago I met Roxy, a German Shepherd crossed with a Husky, who had been living with John for about three years. From the very first moment that I met her, I could see so much happiness that she had brought to John’s life and how happy Roxy was. They really are number one in each other’s lives and are inseparable.
Sadly having lost his last dog, John visited Snetterton to meet the dogs. Roxy appeared from nowhere and stood in front of John as much as to say, “well I am coming with you”. Roxy melted John’s heart and he drove a round trip of over 100 miles each day to walk her and get to know her a little better.
"On the day Roxy was going home with John, he was told that he was the third person to take her and he must not hesitate to bring her back if he found her too difficult. He assured the staff that he would not be back, but one day he almost gave in. Roxy was somewhat of a handful from the day he took her home, but he was determined that he would not be beaten.
After all, he has always had rescue dogs so he realised that there may be challenges. One day, John was in tears with Roxy’s behaviour, but he persevered as he was determined that this rescue dog would have a permanent and loving home.
Slowly, Roxy became less of a handful and with taking her to weekly dog training classes as well as having extra training and lots of love and attention from John, Roxy is now the most loving and obedient dog.
However, she does have her moments...... She loves to walk in the woods but may chase a squirrel or other wildlife and then probably go missing for a time. If she is left in the house she will climb up onto the settee, but on hearing the car she will get down and pretend she has been on the carpet all the time.
Her latest trick is to go and lay on a bed when left alone, but of course she does not straighten the duvet when she hears the car so she cannot hide that trick. Roxy loves to be on a sandy beach and loves socialising with other dogs on her walks. She loves nothing more than to be allowed on the settee in the evening, but when she is ready for bed she will stand at the bottom of the stairs and wait to be told that she can go up. She knows to the minute her mealtimes, even when the clocks change!
Roxy is so loving, often coming across to give you a big wet kiss. So many people, including strangers, comment on how happy Roxy is.
Not knowing the history of Roxy’s life before she went to Snetterton to the Dogs Trust, this will remain a mystery, but having been looked after by them for part of her life, I would like to say thank you for all the hard work that they do with so many dogs.”
Snetterton Rehoming Centre invited Kay and her partner to a tour of the centre and they spent a wonderful afternoon looking round. Emily Johnston, Assistant Manager of Dogs Trust Snetterton Rehoming Centre, said:
“We’re so grateful for Kay’s very kind nomination in honour of a dog her partner adopted from us.
We’d like to say a huge thank you to her and to My Pet Matters.
The Snetterton Rehoming Centre, which has 45 kennels, recently rehomed their 10,000th dog just a few days before the 20th anniversary of their rebuild.
We see all types of dogs come into the centre. We are always here to support owners and dogs on their journey to their fur-ever home, but we couldn’t do any of this without our generous supporters.”