The week has been dominated by just one thing – the birth of baby Claudia on Wednesday. Her proud mum and dad are trustees of the branch and very dear friends to us all. The birth did not go to plan and little Claudia was in an incubator until yesterday but is making great progress and will hopefully be able to come home next week.

We all know just how precious babies are but when things don’t quite go to plan it somehow makes them all the more special and worrisome. Kittens Ollie and Lily (above) have befallen a similar fate. They have been with us far longer than they should have been and over the 5-6 weeks they have been waiting for a home they have gone from being little bundles to adolescents.

I always think that when kittens grow up in our care it is nothing short of criminal. But, thankfully, the saying ‘3rd time lucky’ came true yesterday when the 3rd family to visit them decided they would like to give them a home – hooray!

All in all we’ve had a very uplifting week. The new shop has done well and turned a good profit, we’ve had 3 kittens and 2 cats reserved and Merlin the bunny hopped off to his new home with his girlfriend Carroty, but undoubtedly our best news of the week (aside from Claudia) was the reserve on Dexter the dog.

Dexter has been with us close on 3 months, far longer than he should’ve been because he is a cracking dog. But a family in Harrogate fell in love with him from his write up and came to visit him on Wednesday and fell well and truly for him. So please keep everything crossed that he will be on his merry way soon!

Of course amongst the wonderful highs, plenty of lows have punctuated the week. Kittens season is well and truly in full swing and there just isn’t the space in the region to accommodate everyone rescued. It’s simple maths – if we don’t rehome animals we can’t take new in, and with record low rehoming figures for the branch this month the pressure has felt far worse than usual.

Whilst I was at head office in Horsham this week I learnt that rehoming figures are down this year for all the leading animal charities, but this is small comfort when in 2 days more cats/kittens have needed to come in than we have capacity for. I’m guessing it’s all about ‘consumer confidence’ – money is so tight and jobs scarce, that people are sensibly not taking on other commitments.

A new dog admission this week has also rocked everyone due to his state of neglect and emaciation. Things don’t look great for Benny at the moment but only time will tell.

And the 3 community events that we’ve attended recently to promote microchipping weren’t too successful for us and only 4 animals were chipped On one of the events we were doing chipping for free! So, yes, highs and lows all round but Claudia will remain, uppermost in our minds, and rightly so I reckon!

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