MEET Louis... the Springer Spaniel with very expensive knees!
Lucky Louis’s life has been saved at the last minute by South Yorkshire English Springer Spaniel Rescue – after his former owner could not meet vet bills for his treatment.
Rescue volunteers stepped in after hearing that the crippled dog was to be put to sleep.
But Louis’s “luxating patellas” along with his displaced hips will cost the cash-strapped rescuers £5,000, for both surgery and physiotherapy.
The two-year-old is now happily re-homed, and awaiting his final operation... that will still be funded by SYESSR.
Volunteer Joanne Dean said: “Louis is much loved by his new owner, Judy. She says he is the nicest springer she has ever had and he has impeccable manners”.
But the cost is just the latest blow to the struggling rescue charity – who have seen their reserves slashed by half, to just over £6,000 in the past year.
An astonishing 103 dogs were saved by the rescue last year – but the cost was nearly £42,000 in kennelling and veterinary fees alone.
And the spiralling cost of food, equipment and petrol for volunteers – who travel miles every day, from Wath, Wombwell, Barnsley and Rotherham, to walk and care for the dogs – is hitting the volunteers hard.
Joanne added: “No dog is ever put to sleep – so this means that a dog can spend a number of months or even years with us, before finding the right home”.
At times the Rescue – a Kennel Club accredited, registered charity – has up to 20 dogs at any one time, housed in a commercial kennels at Thurgoland, and new dog walkers and fundraisers are vital.
Donations from a group of people who received dogs from the Rescue enabled the volunteers to erect a fully secure play area, where potential owners can bond with dogs, and the dogs can enjoy time running around off their leads.
The volunteers also hold regular fundraising events – including one this weekend (April 10) at Elsecar Heritage Centre.
Others, at the same venue, will take place on May 15 and May 22, with many different items for sale.
Joanne added: “Everything is so expensive and as we are always stretched tight financially, funding is a real headache.
“We are lucky in that we have regular donors, but it takes just one extra vet fee to throw us off balance. We have to turn dogs away at times – that’s heartbreaking”.
* To check out SYESSR’s good work, or if you think you can help, visit their website at: www.syessr.co.uk or email: firstname.lastname@example.org