Monday, 6 January 2014

Right to roam - doggie edition

Sorry about the absence, folks. What with the festive period and other things, I didn't prepare enough Gems to last for this long.

One of the things that has occupied us is a new member of our family. We have fostered, from a rescue centre, a Staffordshire bull terrier/bulldog (or boxer, it's not been too clear) by the name of Roxie.

She's seven, but has spent three years at the rescue centre. When I first saw her, my heart nearly broke, because she was so depressed and wary of forming attachments that would be broken. She would lean against the fence of her pen for the slightest bit of contact, but would refuse to react to it. She has been with us since last Friday, and as that picture shows, Roxy is settling in nicely.

In our company, in our home, at least.

When it comes to leaving the house, she is resigned about needing to wear a muzzle (legacy of a poor past), and wary of almost everything. That said, Roxy is incredibly well-behaved, and it's only with one or two dogs that she feels threatened enough to take action. Apart from that, she is very happy stay close to us.

Today, our early-morning walk took us along the seafront - there and back again. One of the things about Roxy is that she decides when she has had enough and stops. Literally. We will be walking along, happy as anything, and I will be chatting with Julie. The next thing we know, an arm will be nearly wrenched from its socket because Roxy has had enough and stopped dead without us realising in time.

This morning, we managed to get quite far along the promenade before we reached Point Nope. Probably, Roxy wanted to investigate all the new smells. Certainly, she was fascinated by the pebbled beach and the smell of the sea.

As we strolled back, Julie noticed something interesting. Something which elicited a silly remark from yours truly...


If you have a pet you no longer want or can no longer keep for whatever reason, don't dump it. Take it to a rescue centre.
If you would like to have a pet, don't get one from a shop or pet farm. Get one from a rescue centre.

Rescue centres are charitable organisations, are registered as such, and have to provide documentation of everything they do and must adhere to basic guidelines. This means that any animal given to them will be treated, and treated well. It also means that you are essentially guaranteed of a healthy animal should you come to adopt or foster one.
As you can see from the picture of Roxy, she is a happy doggie indeed, despite her demeanor in the rescue centre. Proof, surely?

However, rescue centres, as I said, are charities. This means they are reliant on donations and the occasional Lottery grant. Last Chance Animal Rescue is the place Roxy came from. It's a tiny place with minimal resources, and the abnormal weather we have had in the south of Britain recently has caused a lot of trouble. The high winds and torrential rain certainly did the centre no favours, as they went without power and a phone line (and therefore no internet connection) for a while.

Just think.
That means all the animals rescued had no heat. Apart from personal mobile phones, absolutely no contact could be made with the outside world, unless you braved the flooded roads - the entrance to the centre is slap-bang at the bottom point where the road cuts across a valley.

If you are local to the centre, please think about using them as a resource for a pet. And even if you are or are not, please think very hard about donating to them. People often drop by with food and/or toys and bedding, but money is the one thing they desperately need.
Drop by their donation page to find out more.

Thank you.