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Donations Doubled for dogs like Athena: A Canine Goddess of War against loneliness during Covid-19

In a scary year that has been isolating and lonely for many people, the companionship offered to us by our pets has become highlighted and celebrated. This year, as part of our Big Give Christmas Challenge appeal where all donations will be doubled, we are raising money to pay back the debt we owe these loyal, caring and faithful companions.

Never before have so many of us collectively felt the benefits that pets can bring to our physical and mental wellbeing.

In a sense, this has made 2020 a great year for companion animals; long may our appreciation for them as integral members of our families continue. However, it sadly hasn’t put an end to the need for animal rescue services.

The majority of animals who seek NAWT’s help are past the puppy or kitten stage of life, and many of them arrive with underlying health conditions that require treatment. These two factors combined can often make them less desirable to a new family than a puppy/kitten purchased from a breeder.

However, we hear so many stories of the ways in which rescue animals have saved or transformed your lives, making it clear that whether we’re in the midst of a global pandemic or not, we have a duty to continue to protect homeless and abandoned animals.

Like her Greek Goddess namesake, this year ex-NAWT rescue dog Athena became a canine Goddess of war against the loneliness created by Coronavirus. Following the loss of her husband last year, Athena’s new owner Jenny has described Athena as her companion, best friend and lifesaver.

Athena was four years old when she arrived at NAWT Cornwall in September 2019, but despite her relatively young age, she was suffering from extensive arthritis in her hip. This illness had clearly been causing poor Athena great pain and discomfort for quite some time and left untreated, she would have had a painful and unhappy future ahead of her, ending in the loss of her ability to walk.

Thankfully, generous supporters of NAWT Cornwall rallied to raise the £1,200 needed for her surgery, which meant she could be happily rehomed and enjoy her recovery with a loving new owner, before the world was turned upside down with the arrival of Covid-19. 

Athena stayed safe through lockdown, in the care of her loving new owner Jenny.

Jenny reported back to us on all the ways Athena had improved her life this year, in a classic tale of “Who Rescued Who”, which is something we hear so much of from rehomers at NAWT.

Jenny said of Athena: “She is the happiest, most loving little dog. Her favourite place is my lap, whenever I sit she immediately jumps up, settles down and sleeps contentedly”.

“From the moment I brought her home from the centre last November, she has fitted in with every aspect of my life. I live on my own since my husband passed away last year, and although my family all live locally, I don’t know how I would have coped with the lockdown without Athena. She is my companion, my best friend, my lifesaver. I am so lucky to have found her, hopefully she feels the same”.

Stories like this are a great reminder that no matter what is happening in the human world around us, pets remain an important part of our lives, and we must continue to protect and care for them if we are going to continue to benefit from all the wonderful improvements they bring to our lives.

This is why NAWT’s project as part of the Big Give Christmas Challenge this year, is to continue to improve the lives of homeless animals during the Coronavirus pandemic. From midday on 1st December 2020 – midday on 8th December 2020, every donation you make to our campaign on the Big Give website will be DOUBLED at no extra cost to you.

Please help us in our mission to give back to all our furry companions, who have done so much for all of us this year, by supporting our Big Give Christmas Challenge appeal from midday on 1st December 2020.


What a lovely story, such a beautiful and affectionate dog. So pleased her and Jenny found each other. So important we do what we can to support the work you do. Thank-you for sharing and cheering me up:-) Love, Rich

What a lovely story, such a beautiful and affectionate dog. So pleased her and Jenny found each other. So important we do what we can to support the work you do. Thank-you for sharing and cheering me up:-) Love, Rich

Hopefully, although I can't have a dog because I never know if I have to go to hospital due to my immune suppressant condition, I will be donating on and slightly after 1st Dec. to get it doubled.

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