Dom Hodgson, from Ryhope, Sunderland, will be getting in the saddle for a Tour de Rescue, which will see him cycle 200 miles and visit 15 rescue centres across four days to shine a light on the dedicated work done by local rescue volunteers.
The professional dog trainer and author, who runs Pack Leader Dog Adventures, will begin his feat on Monday, September 9 visiting centres in Alnwick, Northumberland, before cycling to centres in Teesside, Derbyshire and North Wales.
Centres he’ll be visiting include Alexa’s Animals, just north of Alnwick, whose founder Alexa Nisbet has been honoured with an MBE for services to animal rescue.
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At each location there will be a charity event evening where local dog trainers are coming along to share their best training advice about rescue dogs with the cycle overall raising money for the Animal Krackers charity in Sunderland.
Dom said: “I’m not knocking the larger animal rescue centres, they do fantastic work, but I want to shine a light on the volunteers at smaller rescue centres who devote their lives to animals. I also want to show that rescue dogs can make fantastic pets.
“Rescue dogs usually just haven’t had enough stimulation or exercise and people give up on them, but that behaviour can be worked on with the right management system.”
He added: “One of the main reasons I'm doing this event is that there is an increase in pets dumped over the summer compared to the winter months with behavioural problems being one of the most common reasons.“Last summer, the RSPCA saw an 85% increase in dogs getting handed over. Even more worrying, Dogs Trust say people are getting dogs and even puppies for the summer holidays to entertain the kids then dumping them once school starts in the autumn.”
*For more information on the Tour de Rescue talks and to donate search “Tour De Rescue 2019 - Support Your Local Rescue” on Facebook.