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(Updated 31/4/01)

PRO Dogs / Pets As Therapy

by Maureen Hennis

Pictured above, three generations of Pets As Therapy German Shepherds: Grandmother Hannah aged 11, Meg aged eight and her daughter Esta aged seven months. Owner Anna Vickerman is a PAT Dog volunteer and they are regular and valued visitors at St Richard’s Hospice in Worcester.

IF YOU are in the Durham area on Saturday 5th May why not come along to Waterhouses Community Centre between 10am and 1pm where Pets As Therapy is holding a Grand Coffee Morning/Table Top/Craft Day.

Maybe you have thought about supporting the charity in the past but have been too easy to do so. Maybe, with the present lull in the dog show scene, this is your opportunity to help a charity that not only brings so much comfort and companionship to patients through PAT dogs but also gives wonderful PR to dogs of all breeds. Everyone is welcome, for further details contact Beryl Bateson on 0191 373 4442.

Anna Vickerman is a Pets As Therapy volunteer who owns three generations of PAT dogs. Grandmother Hannah aged 11, Meg aged eight and her daughter Esta aged seven months. They are regular visitors at St Richard’s Hospice in Worcester, where their visits are greatly appreciated and found to be extremely beneficial. Recently the Clara Vale Training Class in Crawcrook, Ryton on Tyne, hosted a Quiz Night and Buffet Supper for Pets As Therapy. It was a most enjoyable evening. The quiz ‘mistress’ Abbi Adair had obviously put a great deal of time and effort into compiling the quiz questions and this was followed by a wonderful buffet supper. Many thanks to the committee of the Clara Vale Training Class and Beryl, Joan and Abbi from the Pets As Therapy Northern Committee for a great night out.

A Church service for the blessing of PAT Dogs is to take place on Sunday 6th May at St Hilda’s Church, The Headland, Hartlepool, at 2.30pm. All well behaved dogs have been invited to attend and further details are available from Pauline Lee on 01429 232306.

If you live in Lancashire and would like to take part in a Sponsored Treasure Hunt on Friday 11th May please contact Brenda Sandham on 01524 751656.

Two Exemption Dog Shows in aid of Pets As Therapy are to go ahead during PAT Fun week 5th - 13th May. Jenny Rideout is organising a show in Middlesex. Contact Jenny on 0208 841 8251 and Val Crofts is the organiser of the show at Blackwater Farm, Great Witchingham, Norfolk, ring Val on 01362 821199 for further details.
Jane Atkinson, Pets As Therapy area co-ordinator for the Bury area, has organised a Coffee Morning at Ramsbottom Library on Thursday 10th May and a collecting day at the Co-op Store at Ramsbottom on Saturday 12th May. PAT dogs will also be in attendance at a collection and promotion day at the Pets At Home store in Gateshead on Saturday 12th May.

I recently received a letter from Therese Morrell from Long Eaton in Nottinghamshire. Therese is the very proud owner of Saffy, a Staffordshire Bull Terrier PAT dog who visits Treetops Hospice for the Terminally Ill in Risley, Derbyshire. Saffy lives with her owner and Blue, an eight year old SBT dog and two cats, and she regularly accompanies her owner to car boot sales to raise money for SBT Rescue and Welfare. All this as well as being regularly shown, being consistently placed at breed and championship shows. At Birmingham National she recently took part in the Parade of PAT dogs. Therese tells me that Saffy is a wonderful PAT dog and a great ambassador for her breed.

If you would like to register your dog as a PAT dog please send a sae to Pets As Therapy, 6 New Road, Ditton, Kent, ME20 6AD. If you have any news, views or comments please contact me at Pets As Therapy (Northern) PO Box 11, Stanley, Co Durham DH9 7YZ or telephone 01207 236040.