Hero dog helps Mayhew Animal Home with its pet therapy programme
- Credit: Archant
An abandoned dog has become a true hero in Kensal Green by helping staff who rescued her with their pet therapy programme.
Lola, an 11-year-old Staffie, was dumped outside the Mayhew Animal Home in Trenmar Gardens seven years ago but now is a key player in the charity’s TheraPaws therapy programme.
The blue Staffie had just had a litter of puppies, was malnourished and still lactating when she was found on the doorstep with her toys.
As Lola’s grey coat identified her as a rare dog, whose puppies can sell for up to £1,000 each, staff believed her owners saw her breeding machine who was no longer needed.
Lola was soon adopted by Charlie and Ben Le Rougetel, who were looking for an entirely different breed as a pet.
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Charlie said: “When I first came to The Mayhew I didn’t want a Staffie – in fact I wanted any dog other than a Staffie. But then I met Lola and she was as soft as butter. The first thing I noticed was her snuffling pig noises – she was so endearing.
“I got involved with TheraPaws after reading about it in a newsletter. I thought it was such a simple but really wonderful idea, and that Lola would be perfect because she is such a gentle dog and is really peaceful to be around.”
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Lola now dedicates her precious time volunteering as a TheraPaws dog, providing pet therapy for elderly residents at care homes, community centres, hospices and hospitals across North and West London.
Lola and Charlie have been visiting Kenbrook Residential Home in Wembley Park, which provides care for the elderly suffering from dementia, since last August.
Luke Berman, Project Manager, TheraPaws, says; “We visit 43 venues across 11 boroughs in London. As well as aiming to bring older people and animals together to help one another, the TheraPaws programme also raises awareness of the positive effects dogs have.”
To find out more about TheraPaws visit themayhew.org/therapaws or call 020 8962 8000.