A video showing the transformation of a frightened dog into a playful pet after living with a charity volunteer in Tunbridge Wells has been watched and shared by scores of animal lovers up and down the county.
The video shows Georgie, a year old lurcher, who currently lives with foster mum Frances Stick and her family in Kent, go from cowering and terrified when approached to a happy, waggy-tailed dog delighted to join in a game.
The video, created by Frances’s 14-year-old son Daniel, is testament to the huge amount of work Frances puts in as a volunteer for Forever Hounds Trust, to help greyhounds and lurchers that have had a bad start in life.
Frances, who along with her family has fostered over 40 sighthounds, says: “Georgie was found wandering near here, and ended up in a pound. He was so terrified that he would wet himself and scream if anybody came near him.”
Forever Hounds Trust (formerly known as GRWE, Greyhound Rescue West of England) are dedicated to rescuing greyhounds and lurchers, and as one of their volunteers, Frances agreed to collect Georgie from the pound once he had been there for the mandatory seven days, and bring him home with her. Frances adds: “After collecting him I took him straight to the vet for a medical check-up, vaccinations and microchipping, which is always the first port of call for rescued dogs. I had yet to see him walk, but the vet was sure he was physically able to. It took time and patience to gain his trust, but eventually he started to come out of his shell a little to accept treats and over time I was able to gain his trust. To look at him now, running around, you wouldn’t believe there was a time when he was too afraid to even stand up.”
Thanks to Frances’s work, Georgie is now confident with people and other dogs. Georgie was in foster with four other lurchers, three of whom were also rescues from Forever Hounds Trust. His confidence grew so much that he has now been able to move on to a new forever home, which the charity has found for him.
Frances says: “Because Georgie was such a nervous boy, we took his re-homing very slowly. We visited his new home four times before the adoption papers were signed and made sure he was happy in his new environment. He has gone to live with a lovely couple who have another dog and will continue to build his confidence and give him all the love and affection he needs. It broke my heart to say goodbye to him and I miss him terribly but he’ll have a wonderful life, which is the aim of the work we do at GRWE. And, there are always more dogs that need our help and finding a home for one means I can help another.”
Rachel Grocott, CEO of Forever Hounds Trust said: “The work Frances has done with Georgie has been amazing, and his transformation is a joy to see. The video showing his progress is wonderful to watch and really does show the important work that Trust volunteers do every day to help greyhounds and lurchers find new homes.”
Forever Hounds Trust are constantly seeking homes for the dogs they rescue, and ask that if you are considering getting a dog you consider a greyhound or lurcher from the organisation. They match dogs to owners, ensuring you get the right dog for you. If you can help by offering a forever home to a dog like Georgie, please contact Forever Hounds Trust on 03000 111 100 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The video charting Georgie’s journey can be seen here.