Sadly we often hear about dogs looking and waiting for a forever home. Here at Good News Shared we love hearing about when rescue dogs meet their perfect owners. This story about Lola comes with a twist, where Lola finding her forever home isn’t the happy ending. Instead it’s just the beginning…
Eleven year old blue Staffie Lola was found seven years ago after she was found dumped outside The Mayhew Animal Home during the night in her bed with her toys. She had just had a litter of puppies, and was malnourished and still lactating.
Being a blue Staffie (meaning that she has a grey coat), Lola is quite a rare dog and her puppies can sell for up to £1000 per pup. So sadly it’s suspected that her previous owners used her as a breeding machine and then abandoned her when she was no longer wanted.
After being cared for by The Mayhew Animal Home, Lola was quickly adopted and given a forever home by Charlie and Ben Le Rougetel.
Charlie says; “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.”
“Lola is a really chilled out, funny and cheeky dog who is happy with life and is certainly no fool when it comes to getting the occasional biscuit off someone. She just loves swimming, paddling in the sea and going on trips to the beach, where she likes to run round in circles on the sand.”
Lola got her happy ending, and now is helping others
After The Mayhew Animal Home helped rescue Lola, she’s now spreading the love by helping them.
Lola dedicates her time to older people by volunteering as a TheraPaws dog, providing pet therapy for residents at care homes, community centres, hospices and hospitals across North and West London.
The cute Staffie and her doting owner Charlie have been visiting Kenbrook Residential Home in Wembley Park, which provides care for older people suffering from dementia, since August 2015. Lola, who dishes out much needed cuddles and love, is the perfect therapy dog because she is so gentle and peaceful to be around – and she really enjoys her visits, with her tail constantly wagging and nose searching for crumbs.
Charlie says; “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.”
“It was quite moving the first time we went on a TheraPaws visit. It’s such a lovely home – all of the residents are a delight to spend time with and as soon as they see Lola, their eyes light up, their spark comes back and they just become super engaged.”
“Even though we only go for an hour every two weeks so many of the residents now recognise her. It means a lot to see the joy in their faces when I take Lola in.”
Luke Berman, Project Manager, TheraPaws, says; “We visit 43 venues across 11 boroughs in London. All of the venues we visit are seeing the positive impact that the dogs and volunteers bring. The dogs encourage residents out of their rooms and our volunteers create a strong bond. Some residents have had to give their pets up so our dogs bring a lot of joy and wellbeing to people.”
“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, please visit www.themayhew.org/therapaws or call 020 8962 8000.