Sunday, September 13, 2009
Newfoundlands Make A Big Splash
"Ten of the country’s biggest dogs — Newfoundland pedigrees weighing in collectively at around 140 stone — entertained spectators with a dazzling display of their life-saving skills at a sponsored rescue.
The Newfoundland rescue dogs spent the day saving Islanders from the River Medina, below the Folly Inn, Whippingham, including Earl Mountbatten Hospice senior fundraiser Karen Eeles and Wightlink marketing manager Kerry Jackson.
Kerry said the water wasn’t too chilly: 'It was a great experience being rescued by a 14-stone Newfoundland dog for such a worthwhile cause and the dogs and their trainers/owners were just amazing. Despite their size, they are such gentle animals. I hope the raising of the money for the hospice was as successful as the day itself.'
"The fun day, sponsored by Wightlink, which transported the dogs and their handlers from the mainland, raised around £4,000 for the hospice. The giant Newfoundland dogs are natural swimmers and have webbing between their paws to help them swim.
Although fully trained to save lives, they are used purely for demonstration, awareness and fundraising projects and, since 1990, have raised more than half-a-million pounds for a range of charities.
"Initially, the focus was on helping children’s hospices but more recently the fundraising drive has been expanded to take in all hospices."