Re-homing a Husky-cross is all in a day’s work for Charlotte Cullinan, comms officer at Battersea Dogs and Cats Home

Date: 25 April 2012 09:40

My day

7.45am: I drive into work with my Battersea rescue dog, Bichon Frise Mario snoozing on the back seat. He spends his days sleeping under my desk and trying to sneak treats from colleagues!

9.00am: The communications team has been very busy lately as an ITV crew is filming a six-part series for ITV1 about Battersea, which will air later this year. We have been spending time accompanying the crew, looking out for interesting stories and providing spokespeople for them. I catch up with the re-homing team to find out what is happening which may be of interest to film today.

10.30am: Battersea always endeavours to comment on animal welfare issues that affect us so we all try to keep up to date with what is happening in the news. I check today’s headlines to see if there are any stories which would be appropriate for Battersea to comment on or pitch features on.

11.30am: One of the dogs who will feature in the ITV series is Honey the Malamute. I catch up with a vet to see how Honey is. She’s been on a strict diet and also needed an operation to remove a lump on her eye. I think the local press would like to hear about Honey as she is an unusual breed with an interesting story. I ensure I have some good photos of her and information on what type of new home she needs.

12.30pm: I look after PR for Battersea’s centre in Brands Hatch, Kent. This is one of the charity’s two satellite locations – the other being in Old Windsor, Berkshire. The Brands Hatch centre is currently looking after a Husky cross called Simba who has been waiting for a new home for over a year. I really want to try and find new owners for him so I contact the Kent media to see if it is interested in running a re-homing appeal on him. In the past these type of articles have been really successful in finding homes for our animals.

2.00pm: After taking Mario out for a lunchtime walk, a dog magazine calls me for more information about a dog called Charlie who featured in a press release I sent out yesterday. Like 37 per cent of the dogs who come into Battersea, Charlie is a Staffordshire Bull Terrier. Last year, Battersea launched a campaign called “Staffies. They’re Softer Than You Think” to encourage people to see that Staffies don’t deserve the bad press they sadly get. Every day, we have a dog from the kennels in the office with us and invariably this is a Staffie. So, we know first-hand what a loving and affectionate breed they are.

3.00pm: I take a call from a regional TV news programme which is running a story on dangerous dogs. Battersea has been lobbying the Government for reform of current dog law and we’re keen for our views to be heard. I arrange for a Battersea spokesperson to be interviewed, brief them with the required information, and outline some strong case studies of dogs currently within the Home.

4.00pm: I go to the kennels and cattery to look for some new stories. We’ve recently had lots of older dogs, which might make an interesting trend-based story. We’re looking after a lovely old boy called Benny so, with the help of a dog handler, I take some photos. I love getting photos of the dogs in front of Battersea Power Station as this really helps to cement us as part of London’s landscape.

5.30pm: Mario and I head home for the day. Mario spends the evening snoozing while I paint a skirting board. My husband and I recently bought a house so every evening is spent on DIY!



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