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Santa Paws grottos will help support Liverpool animal rescue this Christmas

3 months ago

By Dawn Collinson

Santa Paws grottos will help support Liverpool animal rescue this Christmas

It’s time for pups to dig out their best festive outfits because Santa Paws is coming to town!

Santa Paws grottos are being held over two weekends in December to raise much-needed support for a Liverpool animal rescue.

Dawn Cassar, who runs Pawsitively Does It animal training and behaviour classes, is putting on the doggie grottos to help Carla Lane Animals in Need in Melling.

Dawn works with the centre, providing sessions for dogs who’ve been through a traumatic time before going into rescue so they have a better chance of finding their forever home.

She’s been running Santa Paws grottos for the past couple of years at Rice Lane City Farm in Walton. They’ve proved so popular she’s decided to expand and add an extra one in Blundellsands and put more emphasis on being a drop-off point for donations to the centre at what is always one of its busiest times of the year.

Santa Paws Grottos

She explains:

“I work a lot with different animal rescues around Merseyside, I just help where I can, and I know how much strain they’re under.

“Prior to Christmas, the amount of litters of pups that the Carla Lane centre has had in is ridiculous. Every year we say it’s getting worse and harder to cope.

“Before I started my business five years ago, my background was in fostering rescue animals, and that’s how I came to train as a behaviourist.

“People often don’t realise the stress and trauma that dogs go through in kennels regardless of what happened to them before they came there. I wanted to try and help owners understand their dogs psychologically and get to know their needs because once you do that you find any issues rapidly decrease.”

Dawn, who lives in Fazakerley, now works mostly with rescue dogs, either once they’ve been adopted into a new home or to prepare them for finding one, doing one-to-one at home sessions or group training classes.

She says the Santa Paws grottos aren’t just an opportunity for dog lovers to give their pooches a pre-Christmas treat, it’s a chance for her to see some familiar furry friends too.

“With my business, most of the dogs are from rescues so it’s nice to catch up with clients and because they know what a great job Carla Lane do they’re always so generous.”

Santa Paws Grottos

This year Dawn will hold two Santa Paws grottos – one at Rice Lane City Farm in Walton on December 2 & 3, and one at St Nicholas Church, Blundellsands on December 9 & 10.

It’s family-friendly so everyone is welcome, and dogs will be able to meet Santa, get a little gift and have their photo taken against various of Christmassy backdrops. 

Each grotto will be a drop-off point if anyone wants to donate food, dog equipment, or treats and toys, and people can donate money to the Carla Lane sanctuary.

There’ll also be raffles and tombolas to raise extra cash for the charity and Dawn is planning to make up stockings from donations for those who’ll be spending Christmas at the centre.

Santa Paws Grottos

Dawn says there’s always a lovely atmosphere at the grottos with owners and their dogs entering into the festive spirit:

“We see lots of dogs all dressed up in their Christmas jumpers and hats to meet Santa and have their photo taken so it’s very cute,” she adds.

Santa Paws grottos are in Walton and Blundellsands over December 2/3 and 9/10. It’s £10 per dog with a discount for any additional dogs (two would be £15) and all donations to Carla Lane Animals in Need are welcome.

Find more information here.

Find all the latest Liverpool news here.

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