By Claire Martin,
MORE than 100 dogs turned up with their owners to have their pictures taken in the last of the Post’s Bark in the Park events
The event, with a free photo session for dogs and their owners, took place in Wollaton Park on Saturday, bringing the total number of competing dogs to 355.
Their photos will appear in a special supplement in the Post on April 30, when readers will have the chance to vote for the best-looking dog in Notts.
Five-year-old Foxy, half Jack Russell, half chihuahua, was among the latest entrants at Wollaton Park.
She was put forward by owner Emma Clay, 25, of Hoe View Road, in Cropwell Bishop, who said her pet helped her through depression.
“Getting Foxy, who was my first dog, was the best decision I have ever made,” said Miss Clay. “She is such a happy dog, always jumping up and down wagging her tail.
“She brings joy to me and also any stranger she meets.”
Miss Clay bought Foxy from a couple in Chesterfield after reading an advert in the Nottingham Post five years ago.
“I never used to go out but when I got Foxy, I could not stay in, because I could not keep her happy indoors,” said Miss Clay, a saleswoman by trade. “Every time I walked her, I would see other dog owners who would always stop to talk.
“So it really brought my confidence back to talk to other people.”
Because of all her jumping around, Foxy injured her back and needed surgery in January. She was treated at the Dovecote Veterinary Hospital in Castle Donington, and has since made a full recovery.
“I entered her, because she deserves to win after coming through so miraculously,” said Miss Clay. “If she wins, it would be the biggest ‘thank you’ to Mr Robinson, the vet who treated her. He did fantastic work.”
Foxy was picked as Saturday’s winner of a sparkly Ditsy Pet bandanna, worth £15. Laura Shaw, owner of dogs accessory store Ditsy Pet, said that every day, a dog who entered the Post’s competition, was picked at random to win the prize.
Miss Clay also entered her two other dogs into the competition – Rocky, a four-month- old black Labrador, and Marley, Rocky’s uncle, a six- year-old Labrador.
Another of Saturday’s entrants was four-year-old Betty, who was rescued by owner Cheryl Woods, 43, of Toton.
Betty was one of 99 St Bernards left by a boarding kennel owner who abandoned them in squalor while she holidayed in Tenerife.
Mary Ellen Collis was jailed for 18 weeks in October 2009 after pleading guilty to seven charges of causing unnecessary suffering to 85 dogs and one charge of failing to meet the needs of a further 14.
Collis, former owner of the Wardana boarding kennels near Brigstock, Northamptonshire, was charged after an RSPCA raid on the kennels on November 28, 2008.
Ownership of the dogs was signed over to the RSPCA and they were being re-homed in small groups through various RSPCA animal centres.
While out on a bridesmaids’ fitting for her daughter in Radcliffe-on-Trent two years ago, Mrs Woods decided to call into the RSPCA’s shelter in Nottingham Road.
“They told us the St Bernards had just been released, so we decided to rescue her.
“I think it was fate,” Mrs Woods, of Erewash Road, said.
“It’s an appalling story.
“Betty was really malnourished – she weighed 20kg and she now weighs 55kg.
“She doesn’t like sirens and doesn’t like cars. I think she still associates them with police cars. She is a lovely dog and, I think, will be forever grateful that we rescued her.”
Mrs Wood’s daughter, Emma, also put her pet dog, Pippa, forward for the competition. “I fell in love with her straight away,” said Emma, 13. “She was one of a litter of puppies and she was the first one to run up to me.”
(Source: www.denverpost.com )