The Duchess of Cornwall paid her first visit as Royal Patron of the Battersea Cats & Dogs Home this week, and she was accompanied not only by celebrity ambassadors but also her two rescued Jack Russells. Camilla paid a visit to the society’s centre in Windsor on Wednesday and was welcomed by a doggy guard of honour and celebrity ambassadors David Gandy and Amanda Holden.
Though this was her first official visit as Royal Patron, she has paid visits to the charity’s various centres. Including, opening their first cattery in London and more recently opening Battersea’s new Veterinary Hospital and Centre of Excellence. In between times she has had private visits and taken on a couple of Jack Russell’s, Bluebell and Beth in 2011 and 2012. After her welcome, she was on a tour of the medical facilities, kennels and cattery. Before finding time to see how one of her dogs managed with the obstacle course there to help entertain and exercise the dogs at the centre.
The charity was formed in 1979, and has not only extended its remit to cover cats but also spread from the original eponymous centre in Battersea. They have three centres in Battersea, Old Windsor and Brands Hatch caring for approximately 8,000 dogs and cats each year. Though most dogs and cats which are received by the charity, merely need to be given a quick check by veterinary staff, sadly some are injured and malnourished having been with less than ideal owners. To improve the care given to these, Battersea is looking to build a new “dream hospital”, this will not only include three marvellous operating theatres, but also the ancillary items. These include sound-proof recovery wards for dogs and cats to speed their recovery and better laundry facilities. It is essential for proper hygiene that all the bedding and surgical gowns are kept as spotless as possible to avoid the spread of disease when some of these dogs are at their lowest ebb.
No doubt the Duchess will be monitoring the progress of this, and looking forward to the day when she can attend the opening.