A lurcher who is approaching her second anniversary in kennels is hoping that she’ll soon be able to find a sofa to call her own.
The two-year-old dog, called Bella, has spent the whole of the Covid-19 pandemic, and nearly her entire life, in rescue.
And to comfort herself, she snuggles up to a particular Disney teddy each night.
Staff fear that the lonely dog has been struggling to find a home because she’s "misunderstood" by potential adopters.
Hannah Hawkins, behaviour and welfare advisor at Ashley Heath Animal Centre in Dorset, has been working with the lurcher since she arrived in February 2020.
Bella is desperate to find a home to call her own
She said: “Bella was originally rehomed to a family from another charity but they struggled to cope with her behaviour around other dogs and agreed to sign her over to the RSPCA for behavioural work.
“Bella is really worried by other dogs and lacks socialisation skills that she missed out on in her early, formative months.
“We believe that incorrect management has worsened this and she was incredibly frustrated when we first started working with her but, thankfully, after months and months of intensive work we’ve started to see her making improvements.”
Bella is described as a friendly, affectionate dog who loves to spend time with people. She enjoys being groomed and loves nothing more than fuss and attention, as well as running off-lead, playing with her toys and splashing in the water.
“She’s responded well to our training and has even made some doggy friends here at the centre,” said Hannah.
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“However, it’s people she really loves to be around and, although we try to spend as much time with her as possible, we simply can’t be with her all the time and she has sought solace in her cuddly toys, especially Winnie the Pooh who she cuddles up with every night.”
Bella has struggled with separation anxiety in the past, and will need owners who can initially spend lots of time with her and slowly teach her that it’s okay to be left alone.
She needs time to get to know new dog friends and can be reactive to unknown dogs, so she’ll need an experienced and confident adopter who can continue her training and be mindful when walking her.
The rescue would like Bella to have a large, enclosed garden as she really loves to run and play off-lead.
They added: “We feel she’d be best-suited to an adult-only home in a quiet area where she can go for rural walks away from lots of other dogs.”
Find out more about Bella on her Find A Pet profile or contact the team at Ashley Heath on email@example.com.