Six animal-loving volunteers from Horley-based gas distribution company SGN swapped the office for animal care when they helped out at Holbrook Animal Rescue earlier this month.
Holbrook Animal Rescue is a family-run charity near Horsham that aims to find new homes for as many animals as it can.
The volunteers spent two days at the centre walking, bathing and grooming dogs and cared for some of the centre’s other residents, including a Shetland pony and an injured bird of prey.
The visit was organised by Claire Burden from SGN’s Street Works compliance team and formed part of the company’s Community Action Programme, which enables each employee to have one day a year on company time to help out in their local community.
Claire said: “We all found our day at Holbrook incredibly rewarding. It’s a lovely shelter and the owners are clearly very passionate about the animals. The dogs are walked twice a day and the rest of the time they are able to roam freely around the grounds.”
“On the first day we walked all 15 dogs. Then we left them relaxing in the shade to take an injured bird of prey to the vets. When we got back, we cleared the dung from the Shetland pony’s paddock and gave her a thorough groom,” added Claire’s colleague Charlie. “Afterwards we washed down the dog beds, with ‘help’ from one of the puppies who kept trying to eat the brush we were using.
“On day two, our colleagues bathed and groomed the dogs and tidied the barn. The dogs had so much character; one jumped in the water trough to cool down after a walk in the sunshine, and another one chased the pony round the paddock. The dedication that Laura, who runs the rescue centre, and her family have to giving the animals a better life clearly showed.”
Laura Santini, who runs the rescue centre, said: “As a charity, we really appreciate the help of our volunteers and it’s wonderful when we get groups who come over to help us with tasks like walking the dogs, spreading wood chips, and weeding. We were very grateful to Claire’s team for the help they gave us.”