Dog shelter holds open house as demand continues to rise

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A greyhound rescue charity has held an open day to raise vital funds and awareness as the number of dogs given up for adoption continues to rise.

Hector’s Greyhound Rescue opened a rescue centre, caring for retired racing greyhounds, abandoned hunting dogs and whippets, in Llanrhystud four years ago.

To publicize their work, the Rescue Center held an open house at the Platinum Jubilee Kennel on Saturday June 4th.

The event succeeded in raising £1,077 to support the medical care of Simon, a two-year-old greyhound with retinal atrophy.

The event, which took place at Alltgoch Farm, included a dog show, open to all breeds, with godmother judge and actress Josie Sedgwick-Davies, as well as a “plant stall, cake stall, dog stalls, a raffle, hot meals and Suite.”

Actress Josie Sedgwick-Davies (left) judged the dog show, with general manager Hayley Bradley (The Rescue of Hector’s Greyhound ) (The Rescue of Hector’s Greyhound )

Hector’s General Manager, Hayley Bradley, said the day was a success: “It was a very successful day, given that there were so many Jubilee events and people were throwing parties around on the street and in the garden, we had absolutely tremendous support. The funds raised go to Simon, as he suffers from retinal atrophy.”

Initially, the funds from the event were to be donated to a pregnant greyhound, but after she “navigated” the birth of her ten puppies “fantastically”, the team decided to reserve the money for Simon.

“We’ve had him for four weeks. He’s been to Leominster Eye Hospital, it’s not looking good. He has retinal atrophy, he is totally blind in one eye and very advanced in his right eye.

“So we reserved the money for him. It’s not for the initial consultation, but for the hidden expenses that come with eye infections and specialized treatments.

Since the onset of Covid-19 and with the recent economic strains, Hayley said the team has seen an increase in demand for her services.

“With the Covid-19, people were at home a lot and they wanted to attack the dog. But now, with the financial depression, we find that people are giving up their dogs because they are struggling to meet the dog’s needs and pay for them.

“It’s been a tough couple of years, of Covid-19, and from extreme to extreme, and then the aftermath of Covid-19 and the way people handle dogs going back to work. And now, in addition to this depression, people can no longer take care of their dogs.

“They are adult dogs, they may have been part of the family for many years and they entrust them to us.”

The Rescue of Hector's Greyhound

While the shelter focuses on greyhounds and whippets, they may have been known to allow other breeds to “sneak through”. (The Rescue of Hector’s Greyhound ) (The Rescue of Hector’s Greyhound)

While the shelter mainly focuses on greyhounds and whippets, they also occasionally take in other dogs: “Sometimes we sneak in a few weird-looking greyhounds, just a few months ago a Saint Bernard sneaked through our doors.

“No matter how big an animal lover I am, I can’t just look at any animal that needs help.”

In addition to rescuing dogs, the shelter also has a pet registered as a therapy dog, which visits hospices and care homes, as well as educational talks for students on proper pet care.

“There’s not much in Aberystwyth about animal welfare, so we try to give a little back.”

Hayley added: ‘If anyone is interested in helping you can find us on our website or our Facebook pages. We are always desperate for volunteers to walk the dogs in our fields, or perhaps get involved in fundraising or helping out at our events.

“Without the public, there would be no Hector’s, we receive no government funding. We rely solely on the public to help us with what we do.

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