Chaldon Animal Sanctuary
Christmas Photo Special.
As we did last year, this newsletter is our gift to you, full of ‘photos of our furry family that you have helped find peace at our sanctuary.
Let us start though by thanking you for spreading the word about us as we asked in the last newsletter and we’re delighted to welcome some new supporters. And now for the result of our appeal asking you to support Dave who entered the London Triathlon, and yes, as ever, you all did it again and have amazed us at your response which raised an incredible £1,268
Dave raised £1,417 and completed the London Triathlon in 2 hours 41 minutes which we think was an incredible feat and we’ve included his account, and know he agrees with us that it was worthwhile as the Grand Total is....
Truly astounding, thank you.
Dave’s Triathlon Account.
Well I didn't win it .... but when my 6 year lad Dan came running up to me and said "Dad did you win the race?" I so wanted to pick him up and throw him up in the air and say YES, YES son I did it ... I won! The reality is I probably finished somewhere in the middle of my age group but although slightly disappointed with my time of 2 hours 41 minutes and 8 seconds, was still contented with beating last years time by a minute and a half.
This was my 4th attempt at the race and I'm still finding there are plenty of lessons to be learnt ... like next time being more careful the weekend before when I managed to dislocate a rib. I must also remember not to mix my energy drinks as I consumed a strawberry energy drink on the bike section and then a lemon & lime one at the start of the running which resulted in me feeling pretty rough for the remainder of the run. Excuses excuses ...the truth is I will need to do some serious training over the next year if I'm even going to get close to going quicker in 2010. For the record, I swam the nearly a mile in just over quarter of an hour, then the 40km ( nearly 25 mile ) bike ride took me an hour and a quarter, finishing with the 10km ( just over 6 miles ) run in 51 minutes.
( Note from Jacky & Liz...phew, makes us feel tired just reading about it !! )
Finally I just want to say thanks for all the good wishes and advice - especially for the swim in the Thames and a massive thank you to everyone who has or is going to sponsor me - I'll confirm shortly the amount raised but it’s looking good! Thanks again for your support.
Thank you Dave and with such a superb response, we altered our original plan which was to buy 1 or 2 basic cheap sheds, and instead we found a good firm and bought one large and very well made shed that is going to last a long time. You also paid for "our men" ( Purley Fencing ) to do all the work involved which wasn’t as straightforward as "just putting the shed up" - oh no, nothing is that simple here !!!
Firstly the old sheds had to be taken down - and yes, they were all full of this, that and the other, not quite including a kitchen sink !!
Then a proper base needed to be laid as the previous sheds were just on earth and runners, our new shed will last longer being on a stable, flat surface which is especially important as it has heavy sacks and trays of pet food in it.
Then up went the shed with a little added extra adaptation. Naturally our cats love being on top of a shed as a vantage point but it does mean as they jump off and the back feet launch them, their claws can and do puncture the roof felt and a tiny hole can soon let the rain in, resulting in another shed roof rotting. To prevent this an extra roof layer - like a lid, was made of marine ply and put on top of the shed to protect it.
As a final touch, there were even a few pennies left for us to treat ourselves to a new tub and fill it with pansies, not essential we know but such a joy to see and makes us smile when we look at the completed area now, such a difference as you can see.
So our very heartfelt thanks to Dave and to you all in making it possible.
SPOT THE CAT....
Yes, in the middle of the 6’ bush ...
and who else of course....
.....it’s Chico !!
Cristal & Barney Chips & Buzby
Watson & Mister Granville & Fiddler
Merlin & Cristal Trubshaw & Albi
Jess & Polly Mister & Spice
Cat group Dog group
Follow the leader as Buzby shows Tansy the way.
Polly, Bingo & Finn coming down the path.
Jess looking and thinking which way to go next.
Harley doesn’t like the camera pointed at him and thinks if he doesn’t look at us, we won’t see him !!!
Then we have Paws who shows even less with his back to us.
But think we’d have preferred the back view instead of this disapproving face from Gershwin !!
And then Chico who decides to just walk off altogether, not easy this photography lark !!
Looking back over the last year and in particular, who we wrote about in the last Christmas newsletter, we reflected on some of the changes in our furry family, the difference we ( yes, you and us ) have made to them.
You may remember we told you about Merlin last Christmas, a lurcher dog living rough on the streets, surviving by eating food put out for foxes. We don’t know what happened in his earlier life although we suspect he was a travellers dog left behind, but a dog more scared of everything would be hard to find. all sorts of ordinary items were terror inducing, as indeed being touched was too. He would freeze like a statue but gradually Merlin went from accepting being stroked, to wanting it and has now progressed to demanding a fuss and cuddle, even climbing on to my lap. To see him now is a constant joy, as he wags his tail when chatted to, comes running full speed to me or to feel a gentle but determined nose nudging my hand for a fuss .. these are the moments we treasure.
We haven’t had any new cats this year, ( one came for a few months but returned to the owners when they moved ). During the summer, Jacky’s health continued to deteriorate ( more of that in a moment ) and any calls to us asking for help we were able to direct to other good rehoming places with the comment of "come back to us if you’re stuck", as we couldn’t offer any help to any unless it was literally life or death.
Barney the Bichon pup who arrived with his sister earlier this year, is doing very well as is his sister in her new home .. she’s certainly the boss of her new doting Mum and dog friend. Barney is completely one of the gang here, a bit of an Artful Dodger but he really is a great little character who gives us many smiles - we are enjoying having young life in the house, well, most of the time if he’s managing to keep out of mischief !!
Last Christmas we mentioned our old age pooches and pussies and sadly all 4 ( Widget, Julie, Soots & Bruiser ) have left us and we treasure the memories of them all. Sadly, other deaths have happened too, with us laying to rest our dear Homer, Cobble and Jiffy, all been with us many years and much missed.
And now the end of an era has come as we said goodbye to Trubshaw, our wonderful bull. Many of you may not know of all of our animals names but most of you have heard of Trubshaw. Visitors were often welcomed by his lowly moo and conned people into giving him titbits by his friendliness.
We had been deliberately letting our outside animals reduce in numbers but that doesn’t mean to say we don’t miss the big lump and we are now left with just one sheep Albi, who is also missing his mate of course and time will tell if he adjusts to solitary life or not.
Trubshaw was such a character, the leader and protector of our herd he lived with of goats, sheep and of course, his lady friend Chance who we lost 18 months ago, and we hope that they’ve all met up in the green grassy fields wherever they’ve gone.
Tales From A Hospital Bed, by Jacky.
No, this really couldn’t happen to me. As one who has always avoided doctors, dentists and definitely hospitals now found herself "in the system". For some time I hadn’t felt too good but my excuse was I felt too poorly to go to the doctor!! With my usual "it will soon pass" I carried on but then in mid August I got up one morning and soon afterwards found I couldn't breathe.
Thank goodness for Liz who suggested phoning for an ambulance, at first I said no but as panic set in, I submitted to fate. I don’t remember much about the ambulance men here or wheeling me out, or taking me into hospital but I can recall being pushed under the sign for resuscitation and it was then that I realised all was not good.
Poor Liz was in a state as she could see just how poorly I was and in fact it took 3 hours just to stabilise me. I kept telling Liz to go home and see to the dogs but she refused to go until I was better. Eventually I was "on a ward" and started the daily grind of being a patient. After five days I was sent home with the diagnosis of heart failure but whoopee, I was now back with the family and poor Liz who had been coping here as well as visiting me. I wasn’t a lot of use and had been surprised when I was given a walking stick in hospital but very soon found just how much I needed it. When I arrived home, my dogs were absolutely ecstatic and Liz had to put a lead on them to control the over excited leaping and licking of delighted dogs as they said hello without beating me up too much. Liz’s dogs just glanced at me and didn’t welcome me home properly until the next morning, funny lot !!!
So life carried on as best it could and after a month I went to my GP for a check up, and quickly found myself back in hospital !!!!! This time I had a blood clot in my lung. I really could not believe it, me who hadn’t seen a doctor for over 20 years was well and truly getting her comeuppance, and so the daily hospital life began again. Fortunately the three other ladies on the ward had the same nutty humour as me and we kept each other going with laughter, reckoning that laughter is better than tears, like the day we had no cutlery with our meal, ( but that’s another story ). For me the nightmare of being a patient was interspersed with events that any comedian could use in his act.
For the second time I’m back home but have to have blood tests much too often for my liking, to check that the warfarin is thinning my blood. Also I have to give another blood sample to make sure my kidneys are OK from the effects of the heart tablets, what a wonderful life !!! Surely things can only improve?
Back at the sanctuary while Jacky was in hospital, life had to continue of course and as you can imagine, our furries wondered what on earth was going on, particularly the first time Jacky went into hospital ( or inside as we refer to it !) as we were all in shock at the sudden change in life. Jacky’s dogs went from having her about all the time, to nothing, gone, terribly upsetting for them of course. Liz did her best to reassure them and keep the routine as similar as possible, but there were lots of confused faces ...mind you, they did still manage to eat dinner each day which was pleasing.
Our cats weren’t so obvious in showing their upset but you soon realised that they were just hanging around in half hearted fashion instead of being involved and watching everything going on, there was a dullness about them and what they did.
Jacky wasn't having a great tine in hospital either,but now is home and able to get back to walking her dogs and pottering around the sanctuary even if she’s not quite up to bathing half a dozen dogs !!!
Waitrose runs a Community Matters scheme each month where three local organisations are chosen and customers are able to vote for their preferred project. and £1000 is split between them. This resulted in us receiving a very welcome £369, many thanks to Waitrose and our supporters who voted for us.
We’d also like to say a grateful thank you to the Chaldon Fete Committee who yet again have sent us a donation, in spite of us not being able to attend the Fete once more this year. Any willing volunteers who’d like to run a stall for us next year?
Thanks also to Tudor Bakery who have a collection box for us which has just been emptied of £52.46 ... all those pennies add up as we always say. Also to Village Pets who continue to have a box in their shop for donated fooe etc from their customers, thank you.
More thanks to our stamp savers and sorters, we receive £40 - 60 several times a year, and all from something usually thrown away, another example of little things adding up and making a difference.
We also mentioned there would be Chaldon calendars and they are ready and waiting for you to order them - as usual, please put your orders in early to help us in the busy rush towards Christmas, thank you.
As before, this is a home produced effort, printed on card and stapled so that you can stand it on your table etc and turn the pages by folding over each page. We are not putting a hanging loop on them, but if you want to use a piece of ribbon or string, it could soon easily be converted to hang.
They cost £4 - each in total, postage included. Please send your details ( name, address and how many calendars as well as payment, cheque or Paypal ) to us by e-mail or post, thank you.
We have so many people to thank, our friends who in whatever way ( collecting blankets, towels, used postage stamps, tins of food plus donations of course ) help keep us going with your support, thank you.
MERRY CHRISTMAS TO EVERYONE.
Jacky & Liz.
Saving one pets life won’t change the world...
but it will make a world of difference to that one pet.
Don't forget to order your calendars ASAP please.