Care home raises £2.5K for dog charity after adopting two pups

A care home has donated almost £2,500 to a dog charity after falling in love with two dogs they adopted.

Residents and team members at the dementia care home, Heathfield Court, in Colyers Lane, Erith, donated the cheque to AA Dog Rescue, after a year of fundraising.

The charity rescues and rehomes abused, abandoned, and unwanted dogs.

Residents of the care home took part in a “dog walkathon”, walking two pups the home adopted last year around Heathfield Court’s gardens and the local green every day throughout July.

Residents of the care home presented the cheque to the charity at a Christmas party and light switch-on (Picture: John McLellan) 

Trixie and Lulu were adopted by residents and team members in 2022. The Shih Tzu-terrier cross dogs have become a big part of life at the care home and take part in regular pet therapy sessions with the residents.

Christina Fitzmaurice, 75, is living with dementia and moved to Heathfield in September.

Heathfield Court lifestyle coordinator, Donna Jewiss, said: “Christina used to look after daughter Kelly’s cockapoos and referred to them as her ‘grand puppies’. She thinks of Trixie and Lulu as her dogs.

“She’s particularly fond of Trixie, the smaller of the two dogs, and loves it when she sits on her knee. It just makes Christina so happy to stroke and cuddle her. And the dog loves the fuss too!”

Money was also raised through raffles, donations, and auctions at the care home’s various events, including its summer fair.

Senior carer Mariah and her 3-year-old daughter Mariahann with Lulu (Picture: John McLellan) 

Nicola Martin, manager at Heathfield Court, said: “We rescued Lulu and Trixie to bring some joy to our residents, as a lot of them had their own pets.

“We are continually amazed at what a difference these two little dogs make to our residents, everyone’s faces light up when the dogs arrive on their suites.

“Whether they stroke, cuddle or just see the dogs it makes their day, and that’s what life in care is all about, making a difference.”

The donation was presented on December 1, during the care home’s Christmas lights switch-on.

Charley Nathan, president of AA Dog Rescue, said: “Without fundraising, we wouldn’t be able to do what we do.”

Pictured top: From left, Kelly and her mother Christina Fitzmaurice with Trixie (Picture: John McLellan) 

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