An elderly Staffie has scooped up the Best Battersea Dog award at this year's Battersea Dogs & Cats Home Annual Reunion and Family Fun Day, on Sunday 4 September. Lolly, now 16, was adopted from Battersea 11 years ago by Gillian Andrews, who recalled her bad start in life.
“When we first got her from Battersea Lolly was very overweight and out of condition. Before she arrived at the Home she’d been kept in a crate for nine hours a day," she said. "She didn’t know what toys were, she didn’t know what treats were. It took a while to get her to come out for a walk, as she refused to do it at first. But now she’s the most affectionate girl. She wants to please and be loved so badly. I have guinea pigs and rabbits and she thinks they’re her babies and cleans them.”
Four other former Battersea dogs, all of whom have thrived despite a difficult start in life, have been named Battersea Ambassadogs: Willow, Whippet, George and Marjorie will now be among the dogs representing the charity to various events.
Battersea’s Chief Executive Claire Horton said, “I can’t think of any more deserving dogs to be named Battersea Ambassadogs. These wonderful dogs go out into the community, into prisons and schools, to teach people about the importance of responsible dog ownership. Seeing dogs like Marjorie who has been a victim of backstreet breeding, and George who was a cruelty case, really brings home to people why it’s so important to properly look after and love your dogs.”
That of best Battersea dog wasn't the only award given out. Other awards included that of Golden Oldie, won by 15-year-old Judy...
... The dog the judges would most like to take home, won by Golden Retriever Summer...
... and the award for the dog that looks the most like the owner, snatched up by Daniel Cooper and his Staffie Louis.
Reportedly, the judges have stated that picking winners among the contestants was "very hard" - to no one's surprise. Who wouldn't want to give a prize to all of them?
Images by Battersea Dogs and Cats Home.