Chaldon Animal Sanctuary
SUMMER SUNSHINE .... OR NOT !!!
Interesting summer weather we’ve been having isn’t it !!! Last week was probably our summer as we had a heat wave for a few days. Today we have just come in from our morning walk, during which we were virtually drowned in torrential rain.. ..all we need is snow to round off the gamut of weather !!
The hot weather was mostly enjoyed by our furries who would sun themselves for a while and then move into the shade to cool off .... it was certainly preferable to the soggy doggies of today. Our cats have of course wisely stayed indoors and hope the weather forecasters are right and the sun comes out later on. The weather is a great British subject but we particularly notice it and the affect it has with our lifestyle of course, but sure you don’t want a weather forecast so let’s move on to the news here.
And all because the lady loves.....
No... not Milk Tray but Chico !!!! What we do for the love of our furries !!
You remember Chico, the cat with 2 badly broken legs who you raised the money to pay his expensive veterinary treatment that saved his life? Well, Chico likes to have a cuddle and comes on my lap when the laptop computer is already there ( cats like to "help" don’t they !!! ) so he lays his front half on my hands which keeps him off the keyboard.....but it also keeps me off the keyboard if I’m trying to type.
If I move the laptop off my lap, Chico goes too as he likes to be behind the screen and depending what is on the screen, will watch "things" moving too.
This particular evening Chico bought the whole household to a standstill....I couldn’t type, then I couldn’t reach the remote control button box to turn the tv on and then 2 dogs wanted the garden and sat patiently by the door for 5 minutes until Chico decided it was time to go and do something else.
When Homer, a cocker spaniel arrived ( many years ago ) he bit and meant it and although he never bit me, he certainly tried to. Doing anything to him ( grooming etc ) was a danger and I couldn't see I'd ever be able to trust him at those times.....he didn't know how to behave and just "play daft" if that makes sense.
Recently after he had a haircut, I gave him a tidbit and then he bounced and played with me, tail wagging and woofing with joy. It’s something he has done before but it is the most amazing sight every time and am smiling just remembering it. Sadly since this was written, we have lost Homer to liver cancer, play happily forever dear boy.
During the "wee" small hours when getting up for a bathroom visit, then going back to bed, Sprite ex-feral cat, came and snuggled up in the crook of my arm, completely soft and gentle, relaxed and purring, what joy and what we try to achieve for our "damaged" furries that come to us.
How is that despite not having watches the animals always know what time it is !! Trubshaw knows that every other day, he and Albi go up the other end of the field for extra grazing and noisily tell us that we’ve got to go and open their gate. The dogs whether it’s walk time or feed time always know in advance that it’s that time of day as do our cats at meal times as they all congregate in the kitchen near the tin opener. It is amazing how despite not having an apparent clock their time keeping is always so accurate.
Now, don’t all gasp in horror at this as we use the dreaded word, Christmas !!! We’re trying to be a little organised and after the success of last years little calendars we made, have fiddled about with something different for this year, another calendar but a basic desk one. The reason for us mentioning it now is so that you can bear it in mind for when we send out our next Christmas newsletter or even order early if you want to.
As last year, 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.
This is not quite the finished product but just to give you an idea and the cost will be £4 each, including postage. If you want to order them early, they will be available shortly.
You will have noticed that we have enclosed a Chaldon brochure with this newsletter.
The idea for this came about during one of our vet visits when Liz walked into the waiting room and checked to see if there were still newsletters on the shelf for clients to take. There were, however....it was a day in April, one of those lovely Spring days when the sun was shining and you really felt the worst of the winter was behind us....and the newsletter that was on display .... Merry Christmas !!!!!!!
Now, in July as this is written, the "Happy Easter" newsletter is there and we thought it would make sense to have some sort of leaflet that can be used all year round.
We know many of you pass your newsletters on to family & friends and help us gain new supporters and we thank you for that.
Perhaps you could photocopy your Chaldon Leaflet and pass them around at work or leaving them in your local pet shop or your vets waiting room.
If you would like us to post you a few, please drop us a line with roughly how many you would like and we’ll happily pop them in the post to you.
Alternatively if you have internet access, it is also available on our website as an Adobe document that you can download yourselves to print.
We count ourselves very lucky to have such a loyal group of friends and supporters but of course, we do need to keep letting people know we exist and encourage new supporters to join us.
Do you remember us mentioning one of our new arrivals just before Christmas, Murphy the dog with a skin and temperament problem who came to us via the vets as the owners were despairing at what to do with him? Murphy has settled in here and the owners ( Claire & Dave ) still keep in touch and pay Murphy’s "pocket money" for all his food and vet bills.
In August, Dave is entering the London Triathlon and is raising funds for us. The Triathlon consist of swimming, cycling and running so it’s not an easy task by any means.
We know you all do as much as you can for us and in this difficult financial times we don’t like to ask, but if Dave is brave...or foolish !! enough to go to all the effort and no doubt pain, we hope you feel you may be able to spare a little donation and support his efforts.
Instead of asking you to sponsor Dave per mile, we are asking you to make a donation and have enclosed a donation form and of course, if you are able to ask family, friends, workmates etc, as well, that would be marvellous. Thank you all and thank you Dave, we’ll be cheering you on.....from our armchairs !!!
If you have internet access there is a Charity Giving page if you would like to use that.
Or the PayPal button on our website, mentioning what it is for please.
Or if you would like to download a Donation Form to print and use, here's an Adobe document for you.
Click here to download Triathlon form..
As you all know, we are a permanent sanctuary, not for rehoming although we have done that in the past, however, in May we answered the ‘phone early one morning with a near hysterical lady on the end who couldn’t cope...and that is how 2 hours later we took in two Bichon Frise puppies, only 14 weeks old.
The previous owner had bought them ( age 8 weeks ) on the spur of the moment via an advert in a freebie paper, paid her money and then found the pups harder work than she could manage. They had not worn collars, been walked, housetrained etc and had basically run amok. They arrived scared of being handled and wet themselves or ran away and hid, such a sad sight in ones so young who should be full of joy to meet people and be cuddled.
They have taken a lot of time and careful work to help them progress but to see them with waggy tails and bouncing around as pups should, is worth all the effort ... and disturbed nights and puddles etc !!!
Their characters are completely different and it quickly became apparent that they would be best homed apart as the boy is rather a bully to the girl. Fortunately with the help of Bichon Rescue, a lovely home was soon found for the little girl "Angel" and her new mum has another confident Bichon lad who will help show Angel the world is a fun place while her owner lavishes the love and attention on her she needs.
As the new owner had a holiday already booked, Angel stayed with us for a couple of extra weeks which also helped with her general training and confidence...she cracked housetraining and having cuddles, as well as wearing a collar, mixing with our other dogs, putting on weight with a good diet and regular mealtimes etc.
The lad Barney pretends he’s a little toughie and if there is mischief to be found, he’ll be involved .. look what happens when he finds mixing water and dry earth make mud, see ‘photo of innocent puppy who should be white !!
It doesn’t take much for him to suddenly get scared and wet himself again sadly although at the time of writing this, he hasn’t done it recently. His housetraining, like all boys in our experience, has taken longer especially as he let his sister do the asking to go out rather than bothering to think about it himself, but hopefully he’s just about got the idea.
Angel ( Miss clean & tidy, just like a girl !! ) has now gone to her new home and in the week she’s been there, has taken over the house very happily, travelling well in the car, enjoying her new playmate Alfie and loving every moment of life with her new Mum, thank you Geri.
Barney is also well settled and happy in his new home....here with us !! Yes, he’s staying in spite of our efforts to find him a home ( honestly, he nearly went to one of them ) and our intentions to keep our numbers down. Why???......... we fell in love, he is so happy here and he’s not quite as bold and brave as he pretends and does get scared at strange little things. He makes us smile and it is a rare treat to have a pup to enjoy, even though he’s not as straightforward as pups should be, but that’s what we specialise in !!!
It has been a joy to have puppies in the house for a while but also such hard work in a different way to the adults who usually arrive here, but hopefully we’ve given them a good grounding to help them move forward from their early weeks that went so wrong, so that now they can have happy lives, very rewarding.
This leads in to the other end of the scale with more sad losses recently as more treasured Golden Oldies have left us. Dear little Julie, 3 weeks from her 18th birthday was no longer happy to potter on and quietly went to sleep. She’d been with us for over 10 years and we’ll never forget the frightened shaking little dachs cross jack russell who arrived, after she used to hide under the table with the 2 year old child when the parents started violent rowing. Thankfully she gradually found her confidence here, thoroughly enjoyed being involved in what was going on as she could fit through the cat flap and potter around with us when we were outside doing jobs and lived until a grand old age.
While still reeling from losing Julie, our dear little Widget, one of our pooches who was always a pickle, succumbed to the aftermath of a stroke from over a year previously. She had been determined not to give up on life after her stroke although she was less mobile but still happy to potter around to keep an eye on everything going on here, but finally her little 15 year old body could no longer continue and the time was right to say goodbye to another loved little member of the family. She had come to us at a year old after her previous owner had taken her to the vet to be put down as she had chewed the gas pipe !!!! Her loss, our gain.
We also had a sudden unexpected death of Flight, a collie cross who was getting older at 12yrs although still healthy as far as we knew. She suddenly collapsed, had emergency surgery but didn’t survive, what a dreadful shock to be burying her within 24 hours of her not apparently being ill. Flight had come as a typical nervous and neurotic over active collie who lived on her nerves and turned into a much calmer girl as time went on living here.
We have also lost Quill ( 12 years old ) who any of you have visited may well remember as the black & white cat who loved to give cuddles, put his arms around my neck and gave great dribbly kisses and head butts. He had suffered with tummy troubles for a little while and finally things became unmanageable for him so we sadly let him rest in peace.
Bruiser is another cat who visitors may know, she was often mistaken for a kitten as she was such a little girl but died just before her 20th birthday. A little girl in size only as she was a great character and had a massive miaow telling us whatever we needed to be told by her, another beautiful friend we have happy memories of and is sadly missed.
And of course, it’s not just us who grieve. Some years ago a little cat Tabatha joined us who was terrified of dogs due to having been chased by the owners dog and she had been living down the bottom of their garden. In time with us, she realised our dogs were safe but still kept out of the way of them although was comfortable enough when they came into the bedroom overnight which is where she liked to spend most of her time. Then she found a friend, a great big reliable soft lump to cuddle up to each night and she vacated her spot on my bed and took to sleeping with Brogan, our big GSD who we told you about in the last newsletter. Tabatha curled up in the crook of his belly, didn’t mind when he got up to turn round or change position and snuggled back up to him, it was lovely to see. In February when we lost Brogan, it wasn’t only us that grieved and missed him, as Tabatha looked for him each bedtime and then took to not even sleeping in the bedroom.
Tabatha didn’t want to be fussed and stroked, spent lots of time outdoors just sitting about and being very withdrawn. It took 10 weeks before we saw the first signs of her adjusting to not having her big friend around anymore when she went and laid down next to Drummer our other GSD, not cuddled up in touch with him, but a very good first step, and now she is finally back to sleeping on my bed again.
Something we are asked is how we keep living this life and doing it when we lose yet another one of our furry family. Well, the pain never gets easier to bear no matter how often it happens and sometimes through our tears, we ask ourselves the same thing ... however we think these wonderful words explain it all.
When humans die, they make a will to leave their homes and all they have to those they love. I, too, would make a will if I could write.
To some poor wistful, lonely stray - I leave my happy home,
My dish, my cosy bed, my cushioned chair, my toy.
The well loved lap, the gentle stroking hand, the loving voice, the place I made in someone's heart,
The love that at the last could help me to a peaceful painless end held in loving arms. When I should die, Oh do not say,
"No more a pet I'll have, to grieve me by it's loss"
Seek out some lonely, unloved pet and give my place to him.
This is the legacy I leave behind - 'tis all I have to give.
So this is why we do it and why we will always try to respond when we can, and this is what you support and why we are able to still be here.
Without your help in whatever way, the towels and blankets collected, the used postage stamps that help raise the pounds and of course all your donations we literally would not be here to be able to continue. We’d like to add a little extra thank you to all our online friends whose fundraising is also so marvellous.
Thank you from all of our furry family.
Jacky & Liz.