Change Lives

Change Lives

Monday, 14 April 2014

Bobby And Bree Stretching Out.....

Thought you would like to see Big Bobby and Bree at home. Everyone who knows these dogs will appreciate how nice it is to see these photographs.

New Dates Added.....

Please have a look at our events page to see where our fantastic bunch of fundraisers will be over the next 8 months. Please don't forget that these events are also great opportunities to drop off any donations towards our "Change Lives" appeals.

Thanks in advance for your support.

Busy Weekends.....

We've had some good days fundraising as Spring has spring (allegedly!) and I'd like to thank the the Interact Group who arranged a collection as part of their sponsored swim fundraising event for us at Sainsbury's yesterday. Thanks too to Sheena, Roger and Polly who took some of the SHAK dogs along, and also to Snoopy who made an appearance to help some of his old friends.

Last weekend also saw a good day down at Great Outdoors at Shiremoor. Lexi, Ronnie and Bobby provided the attraction this time, but thanks to everyone who helped collect.
Last but by no means least, thanks to the management and staff of both stores, and to everyone who supported and donated!

"Giving A Bark About The Dogs Nobody Else Wants".....

We are delighted to announce the new "Giving A Bark" T Shirts, which simply say exactly what we do!
The first delivery has now arrived, so you can order yours here:

"Giving A Bark About The Dogs Nobody Else Wants"

So Close For Leyla.....

Leyla was booked into a local vets to be destroyed. A phonecall to me stopped that, and are link up with Huskies In Need means that after a short stay with us she is now in an experienced Husky foster home getting her life back on track.

Spring Fayre.....

New Forever Foster Home Needed For Ash.....

We are also having to start looking for a new Forever Foster home for one of our old boys:

Ash is a super-affectionate 3 year old male Rottweiler who , very sadly, due to the health problems of his owners, is now looking for a new family to offer him a loving and forever home.

He has been living with a Rottie female and two terriers and has always been extremely sociable with other dogs, playing happily with anyone he met. Unfortunately, his owners have become unable to exercise him, so he has become a little less confident than he was, but that should quickly resolve once he gets back out into the world again.

We are looking for a home with people who can offer him good exercise and stimulation, with the time and experience to continue the training and guidance that a young male needs. He is very good-natured and biddable and, true to Rottie form, will do anything for food, so he`s a willing trainee! If possible, he would love to live with a dog friend but, because he can be boisterous at times, we are looking for a home without children.

He is currently in his own home in Northumberland, but may move to a foster home in the Herts/Cambs area in the next few weeks. If you would like to know more about Ash, please email

Update On Penny.....

Thanks to everyone who has asked how Penny got on at her visit to the vets. I'm sorry to say her procedure was cancelled due to her coming into season! That meant the foster home we had lined up for her fell through due to an unneutered male dog, so all in all it was a disappointing day. What do they say about best laid plans?

Penny is still with us, an overnight stay in another potential foster home also didn't prove successful as it is beginning to look like she may never of been in a home before. We have to wait several weeks before going through the whole trip again, in the meantime I am trying  my best to find her somewhere to settle.

Finlay Goes Home.....

Some more great news..... after a serious of sleep overs I'm delighted to say that Finlay has now moved to his Forever Foster home. Sheena and Roger have once again done an amazing job in turning this bag of bones into such a fantastic pet. I really cannot thank them enough.....

Finlay when he arrived.

As you can see, the change is almost unrecognisable from the dog above to the dog in the pictures below with his new family. A true rag to riches story, and like all noble gentlemen he has even had his portrait painted!

Thank you again to Sheena and Roger for making this possible, thanks to Finlay's new Mam, Dad and Sister, and thank you to Finlay..... You've be inspiring!

Monday, 31 March 2014

Fantastic News For Toni And Pepper.....

Some good news to though, as I'm delighted to say two long termers have also gone into a new Forever Foster home. It takes very special people to invite new desperate dogs into there home when the pain they are feeling is still so raw after losing one. In Dawn and Terry we have the best..... and so now do Toni and Pepper.

Having done a fantastic job with King, Toni and Pepper are now benefiting from the kindness that Terry and Dawn love to share, and how great is it to see these pictures compared to when they came in.....

Little Bobby.....

Not long after Penny's arrival, little Bobby found his way to The Rescue Place having also been found on the streets. His microchip tells us that he is 15 (yes 15!) although his owners have simply disappeared.

Bobby is wobbly on his backend, and on arrival his white fur was more yellow coloured with a distinctive smell! It was pretty obvious very early on that kennels was no place for this old gentleman to stay.....
A massive thank you to Joan and Mike (and Lacy), who on top of everything else they do for SHAK have kindly given Bobby somewhere to call home whilst we have a look at him physically. As you can see though he is settling in just fine.....

Friday he is going to the vets with Penny for a look over, today he had a more glamorous trip as he nipped to Bella's Groomers at Forest Hall. Thanks to Lucy for donating his makeover, I'm sure you'd all agree he's scrubbed up pretty well!

Sunday, 30 March 2014

Penny Left In Such A State.....

This have been very busy of late, as you will soon see on here, but tonight let me introduce you to a very special girl. Penny came to us a stray just over a week ago. She was found very local to us in Northumberland, after wandering onto a couples out house to seek shelter and to sleep for the night.

As you can see Penny has a huge mammary tumour, the size of a grapefruit, and at least another 4 or 5. Her teeth are rotten, whilst all her senses (eyesight, hearing and smelling) appear to be not quite as good as they once were. All in all she is in a pretty terrible way, and the hardest bit to understand is why as she is such a wonderful girl.

Maybe she is an ex working dog who has been discarded? The rural location in which she was found would back that up, but the matted fur and skin condition underneath would also suggest she has lived outside.

Penny has already had a check up at the vets, where it was found that her chest was a bit "raspy" which in turns gives us great cause for concern in case any cancers have made their way to her chest. Friday I am taking her back for an X Ray just to be sure, then I guess results dependant I have to make a decision. If the chest X Rays show the all clear then its full steam ahead in terms of speying her and a full mammary strip to remove the tumours. If the worst news is confirmed then she will need somewhere to see out her days being loved. Such a shocking state for such a wonderful girl to be in.....

Monday, 24 March 2014

A Tribute Fit For A King.....

Speaking of special people that gave a very special dog a home when they really needed, I recieved this lovely poem from Dawn about the great big bear King that they lost recently. His final few months were just perfect, as is this very fitting tribute to a wonderful dog. Thank you for this and all you did for him Dawn and Terry.


You were magnificent, 
Gentle and strong;
We had you for 4 months
And then you were gone.

It was time to go
And now you are gone,
You can run pain free
All the day long

We loved you so much,
And you loved us too;
We still feel you with us
In all that we do.

We cannot forget you.
How special you were.
You will still be near us
Year after year.

DCookson - 20140321

Memories Of Two SHAK Legends.....

The weekend has marked a couple of sad dates for two remarkable SHAK Legends.

Friday marked the 5th anniversary since we lost Roman. A brave, brave boy who taught us all so much. roman gave me the knowledge, strength and confidence to take on dogs such as Dudley, and I think the fact he spent his final days with a family that loved him dearly despite all his illnesses was great motivation to keep going as well as the perfect ending. Here's his old story taken from our old forum when he died:

"Roman came to us on Saturday 27th December 2008 in a shocking state. He was completely emaciated, very weak and very wobbly. His condition was so bad that I had to carry him from the van that had transported him all the way from Sheffield. Despite clearly being neglected beyond belief, he was a very affectionate boy. After two months of love and good food, Roman was very settled within himself, although he was still not gaining weight, however he had certainly found his zest for life. His CDRM appeared to be stabilising, and on the 21st February 2009 probably the best thing that had ever happened to Roman happened….. he went to a foster home!

His new family were wonderful, he had a beautiful German Shepherd girlfriend that he played with for hours, and a Mam and Dad who loved him dearly.

In the month that he was there, Roman showed what a wonderful character he was, and was such a gentlemen with his girlfriend. He adored his dad so much, and just seeing him living a normal life was a miracle when you remembered the dog that was just waiting to fade away when he arrived.

Despite the fact illness got the better of his back end in the end, this is by no way a sad end to a story. In my eyes it is a happy ending. The fact that we were able to help a dog that didn’t want to live anymore, and that he left behind so many people and another dog who loved him so much. It shows what can be achieved if people are prepared to work and put the effort in, and how worthwhile it all can be when you see a dog as happy as Roman was at the end. I always knew he would break our hearts, but in fact he filled them with joy, and gave the whole charity the emphasis to go down the road of helping the dogs that need it the most."
Roman when he arrived.

Roman at home.
Saturday was another special day, as it was 3 years since we had to say goodbye to another special boy that was so brave. Chance had been through double cruciate ligament operation, but his body was riddled with arthritis so badly that the strain from not being able to put weight on his back legs seriously affected the front ones. He had a great time with us, and made some lifelong friends, having been booked into be destroyed we gave him a "chance" and he was worth every minute..... Here's what I wrote the day he died:

"As expected we had to say good bye this morning to a brave brave soldier that has won the hearts of us all. Chance has now moved onto a better place where I am sure he'll be running riot and having fun.

Special thank you to Karen and Mike for giving Chance so much, and they were with him right to the end. Even as he slept away, his tail was wagging, it was as if he knew he'd be without pain soon.

Special thanks to too Andrea and her family for offering him somewhere to go if a miracle happened, and also to Jonathon at Moorview vets for making the morning as dignified as possible. Chance really was such a brave boy, and we can only imagine the pain he must of been going through.

However despite coming to us after biting his owner just three weeks after a double cruciate ligament operation and when a vet was booked to destroy him, it wasn't aggression that cost him his life. We had to let him go purely because his body was breaking up, and that is something that means a lot to us all individually and as a charity.

We were lucky to have shared three months with Chance, he was one special dog. The photos above are of goodbyes this morning. Even in excruciating pain, look how proud he is.

"No one is more proud of you than me big man, enjoy the running. I'll never forget you. X"

Chance catching upon the news!