The launch of the new RSPCA Animal Adoption Centre at Pets at Home seems several weeks ago, not just a paltry few days ago; it really has been an action packed week with exciting developments.

New staff being interviewed. Ellie dog and Debs in the background.

We arrived early to the opening to give Ellie the chance to sniff around and find her paws. This magic little girl wasn’t bothered about the cats and rabbits or the large amounts of people; she was more interested in licking all the mince pies!!!

Cup cakes and pup cakes went down very well (with us and Ellie!)
The centre was officially opened by RSPCA CEO Gavin Grant

The turn out for the opening was far greater than I had anticipated, but Ellie and all the other animals took everything in their stride and barely seemed to notice all the activity. The animal accommodation is pretty much sound proof so the cats and rabbits were blissfully unaware of all the noisy goings on and just got on with doing what they wanted. I couldn’t help but feel that we were their entertainment!

Since being officially opened all 4 of the black cats that had been overlooked for so many many months have been reserved. We have had plenty of interest in our bunnies but no firm offer a home just yet. I so desperately want them to find a home before Christmas and I’m keeping everything crossed that one is not far away. But for now we are deeply chuffed that Marlon, Murphy, Merlin and Marley have potentially found forever homes.

After the excitement of Monday we then had to turn our attention to the new Northern Quarter shop. The first thing on the agenda was choosing the decor. Oh, if only it was that simple! After changing our minds too many times we settled on a wallpaper but not on the paint. We bought copious amounts of sample pots, only to go with our original conception!

Before we let Jason loose with his paint brush.


Wallpaper of choice, but now we’ve found damp on some of the walls so we’ve had to scale back our plans.


Jason getting stuck in

Watching paint dry

By the end of this week the decorating will be finished, the flooring and signage chosen and ordered, fixtures purchased and furniture delivered. We are still struggling to find a shop counter to match our look but for now we’re having a much deserved day off. You can follow the progress of the shop on it’s very own Facebook page.

Next week it’s full steam ahead with the donations drive and putting all the fixtures and fittings together. At this rate we may even have a soft launch before Christmas, but I’m not making any plans as such.If it happens that’s good, but if not we can wait until the New Year. (If you would like to help us with this new venture we need your help with promotional ideas, volunteers and donations. You can contact the manager by the Facebook page or email us; every little helps!)

Friday and Saturday were spent back at Pets at Home with our dogs. It was Ellie’s turn on Friday and she was so excited when we got out of the car; she knew exactly where she was! She knows the RSPCA Adoption Centre staff quite well now so she was very happy to see them too, but alas no mince pies to lick!

Ellie was so at ease that after a couple of chaperoning her I left her with the staff. She enjoyed the warmth, comfort and affection she got during the day and the very next day a miracle happened….a Christmas miracle! Ellie was reserved! She’s having a second viewing this morning but an email yesterday confirmed that the couple had well and truly fallen in love with her, so it’s very much looking like our girl will have a home for Christmas! This is such exciting news.

Ellie right at home in the new adoption centre.

Sally (aka Fatty) visited the centre on the Saturday. With her being a Cairn Terrier we weren’t quite sure how she was going to react to the cats and rabbits but she was so excited by meeting everyone that it took over an hour before she noticed the other animals. What we discovered on our visit was how much Sally loves children! She was so excited to meet children that we now know she would love to be rehomed to a family. Sally officially goes up for adoption this week and it’s going to be one very lucky home that will get to adopt this beautiful bundle of energy.

Sally enjoying her time out of the kennels.

I’m hopeful Sally will find a home for Christmas too. She’s a cracking little girl who has been incredibly well cared for and well loved by her previous owner. Sadly Sally’s owner became too frail to care for her dogs any longer so they cane to us. Despite being a fatty (the weight is dropping off her with regular exercise and  strict diet) Sally loves hour long walks every day so she’s looking for an active home.

It just leaves us with Harley dog and Samantha rabbit to worry about now. Samantha has had yet another failed bonding, again not of her doing, but it means she’s been waiting 13 months now for her forever home. She’s a wonderful girl and we are all so fond of her. She’s our longest stay resident at the branch and it feels deeply unfair she’s still waiting.

And then there’s Harley dog; our gorgeous, cuddly Harley dog. I really don’t want to see him in kennels for another 3 months. He’s 8 years old and the freezing temperatures are even more unkind to an older dog. Yesterday the staff did some filming of Harley to demonstrate just what a lovely lad he is. I hear it was lots of fun and here is a preview of what they got up to. You can see how loving he is and hopefully someone out there will appreciate just how wonderful he is now.

Best friends Harley and Debs

So here’s to another week of sleep deprivation and confusion; but hey, it’s what we do best at the moment!