With Christmas fast approaching, animal shelters around the country are hoping for the ultimate gift for some of their loneliest residents – a loving home.
Battersea Dogs & Cats Home has even written letters to Santa from some of its canines in the hope of making their wish come true, including a missive from Mr Scruffy – a wiry-haired mongrel seeking owners willing to look past his unusual hair do.
Battersea’s rehoming and welfare manager Becky Fisher said: ‘We do everything we can to make Christmas as fun as possible for our dogs – we give them a special Christmas lunch, decorate the kennels and play carols to get them in the festive spirit.
‘But it’s not the same as being in their own home – and we’re hoping these letters will help shine the spotlight on some of our dogs who face spending the festive season at Battersea, without a family.’
London’s Mayhew animal home is also looking for caring homes for cats and dogs who have been at the centre for up to nine months.
Shelters must go through a careful process to ensure they find the right families to take on the pets and it’s unlikely any adoptions can be completed in time for Christmas, but you could still give an animal in need the gift they’re longing for – a forever home for the New Year.
Mr Scruffy is a Mongrel with big smile and an adorable, shaggy hair-style. He’s a high-energy Terrier who has been passed through a lot of homes before he came to Battersea. Mr Scruffy finds the world a bit overwhelming and he’s hoping to find a home in the country, with owners who will teach him to be the best dog he can be
Sally has found herself back at Battersea for a second time – through no fault of her own – and this former racer is in real need of a lucky break. She’s an affectionate and eager-to-please girl who loves people and hates being left by herself. Despite her gentle nature, this girl is having trouble standing out among the other dogs
Sky is getting lonely in Battersea’s kennels, despite the best efforts of the staff to cheer her up. There’s still lots of energy left in this seven-year-old and she has many years of love left in her. She loves charging around with tennis balls and she’s a very cuddly girl, who lives for human affection
Despite her hand-knitted Christmas jumper, Darcy’s finding it hard to get in the festive spirit. She really misses her old home and is hoping she’ll soon find new owners to love her. She’s a calm and affectionate dog, but she does have a stubborn streak and will need experienced owners to help teach her to mind her manners around other dogs. She’s a very smart girl who loves people and she’s going to make a wonderful, cuddly companion to whoever is lucky enough to take her home
Marley, a black and white male cat was found as a stray and brought into Mayhew at the beginning of November this year. The three-year-old appeared to have been picked on by another cat so was understandably a little scared of his new surroundings. He has slowly started to come out of his shell and would love a nice quite home where he can receive lots of fuss. He would love a garden and would prefer to be the only cat in the home.
After being left no longer wanted by her previous owners, Maggie was brought into Mayhew by Animal Welfare Officers. The five-year-old Terrier mix is ever such a loving and gentle girl, who enjoys to cuddle up close to you for strokes and company. She has poor eyesight and though she can be nervous in new situations and fearful around strangers, once she gets to know and trust you, she is extremely affectionate
This black female cat was found as a stray by Animal Welfare Officers and brought into Mayhew in October this year. The three-year-old needs a home with someone willing to put in a bit of time allowing her to get to know you and trust you. She is looking for an all adult home and would prefer to be the only cat. She would also love a garden too
Husky and Mastiff crossbreed, Lizzy, was first brought into Mayhew a month ago when her previous owners no longer had time for a dog. The 12-month-old is such an affectionate, friendly girl who gets along well with everyone she meets. She’s still very much a puppy, so is super active and playful, and will ideally need an owner with plenty of time on their hands to continue her training and socialisation. She would prefer to be the only dog in the home and can live with children 16 years and older. Lizzy is an active dog who is looking for an equally active owner
Tommy, a seven-year-old male is playful and has the most amazing purr. He arrived at Mayhew more than nine months ago as an injured stray and needed a few teeth coming out as well as a nasty bite behind his leg taken care of. This is now resolved, but you would just need to monitor his leg to see if any lameness might occur in the future. Tommy can live with children, but would like to be the only cat in the home
Two-year-old black and white female Tricks was a stray who had previously been owned. She was brought into Mayhew at the end of October this year and is now looking to settle in and learn to love someone again. Tricks has a slight heart murmur, which has been graded two/three out of six. Heart murmurs need no medication and will be checked out by your vet when you visit yearly. Tricks can live with sensible teenagers, but not other cats or dogs
If you would like to find more about Sally, Sky, Mr Scruffy, Darcy or any of Battersea’s other dogs, visit www.battersea.org.uk or call 0843 509 4444.
For more information on Mayhew’s Christmas campaign ‘I am NOT an Impulse Buy’ campaign, visit www.themayhew.org/notanimpulsebuy