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A couple of months ago, my girlfriends father came home from work, and he started saying how much he desired a dog to keep him company and he had been told about some place called the NCDL (National Canine Defence League) by a friend. So, the next day he got up and went over to the local centre, which luckily is only about 2 miles away from his house.
The next day, whilst visiting the re-housing centre, he told us of how he had fallen in love with a 3 year old Border Collie called “Tom” (which was a strange name, as it is a bitch) and he had actually put his name down to adopt it, then 2 and a half weeks later, the dog was his.
So, who exactly are the NCDL?
You may have seen the advert on telly, telling you how easy it is to sponsor a dog for life, for just £1.00 a week, well here is a more in depth look at the NCDL and the excellent work they do.
The NCDL are a charity based re-housing centre for unwanted or abandoned and mistreated dogs, they have 16 centres situated in various locations around the country (see the list below for your nearest centre), anyway, as you know, there are all too often cases of dogs not being wanted and abandoned or mistreated, well that’s were the NCDL come in, what they do, is take these dogs in, look after them, check them out health-wise and attempt to find loving homes for these poor unwanted animals (although, as you can imagine, they do receive some dogs that are just not re-house able). But they do claim to have an extraordinary success rate and the have a policy were no matter whether a dog is found a home or not and the dog is healthy, they will not destroy the dog, so that’s where you come in.
So you want a dog do you? Are you sure?
Well first of all, I must get this message over, are you really sure you want a dog for life?
Are you not going to get sick of it after a few months and give it away or even worse abandon the poor thing? If the answer to the last question is yes or I don’t know, well don’t bother, as the dog will only end up in the same situation, as you’ve got to be 100% certain whether you actually want a dog and a dog “FOR LIFE” that is.
So, you are 100% certain you want a dog? That’s good, now take a look at the list below and get along to your local NCDL and choose one or even if you don’t want one, you could always sponsor a dog for a mere £1.00 a week (this helps the NCDL feed and look after the vast amount of unwanted dogs) or you can actually volunteer to become a walker (you have to be over the age of 16 for this), this includes going to the centre on a regular basis and taking the dogs for a walk.
To get your dog, its not just a case of going to the centre and walking out with one, Oh no, its not that simple, you see, the NCDL take every precaution available to make sure their dogs are re-housed in caring and fit-to-live surroundings, you have to go through a process that can take up to/just over 2 weeks, here is the process:
Day 1: You arrive at your local centre and take a good look around, the dogs are kept in very cosy cage/kennel buildings, that each house about 10 lots of dogs (some cages have 2 to 3 dogs in them, some of which have to be re-housed together), you’ll see all kinds of lovely dogs, some cross-breeds and some actually very expensive dogs like Bull-Terriers, Labradors, Old English Sheepdogs, etc, take a real good look around and be certain the dog you want, is the dog you’ll still want in years to come. Once you have seen a dog you like, you go to the information centre, and they’ll tell you about the dog and give you any important information concerning the dog, if you are still interested, you put your name down to reserve the dog (once this has been done, the dog is not available to others, unless you have a change of heart).
During the next few days or even a week, you are advised to visit the centre with various members of your family (especially any children) that live/visit regular, and take the dog for a walk around the grounds and to generally get used to him/her.
Day 4/5/6 or 7: In these days, whilst you are getting to know the dog (at the centre) you will receive a home visit, this is of course to make sure your home is fit for the dog to live and make sure everyone in the family is happy with the idea.
About 3 days later, as long as everything is OK, you are allowed to pick up your dog and take it home for a 2 week trial, this gives you the chance to assess the dog in your home and also guards against you having a change of heart.
2 Weeks later: If all is well, and you are 100% sure you want the dog, you take him/her back to the centre so the dog can have a veterinary surgeon give them a thorough medical, all things being OK, you then go and pay for the dog (in the centre we went to ALL dogs, no matter what breed were £55, I think this applies in all the centres, but I’m not 100% certain) and take him/her home and hopefully enjoy your life with your new-found friend.
The dog my girlfriends dad bought was micro-chipped, fully vaccinated, healthy, and is a bloody nuisance LOL, as she is a 100% attention seeker and with it being a Border Collie, is always seeking fun or walks, but it’s a cracker dog and very, very affectionate and in the 6 weeks they have had it, they and me have totally fallen in love with it. We also re-named her Tammy (as I said, she was originally called Tommy for some reason, so we picked the obvious name to call a bitch that was closest to its name).
So, there you have it, the NCDL a charity and volunteer run centre, that not only re-houses unwanted or badly treated dogs, they keep the ones that no-one wants and unless have any serious health problems, keep them at their centres for good, refusing to destroy them.
So, where can I find a NCDL?
Well, hers a list of address’s and phone numbers to your nearest centres:
Ballymena: 60 Teeshan Rd, Ballymena, Co Antrim, (028-2565 2877)
Roden: Roden Lane Farm, Telford, Shropshire, (01952-770-225)
Shoreham: Brighton Rd, Shoreham by Sea, W. Sussex, (01273-452-576)
Snetterton: North End Rd, Snetterton, Norfolk, (01953-498-377)
West Calder: Bentyhead, Hartwood Rd, West Calder, (01506-873-459)
Head Office: 17 Wakley Street, London EC1V 7RQ, (020-7837-0006)
Or visit their web site at www.ncdl.org.uk to find out more info.
So if you are interested in re-housing a dog or just interested in either sponsoring or walking the dogs, you’ll be much appreciated and please, please, if you do take a dog to re-home it, please give it love and care, as some of these dogs have experienced a terrible life of mistreatment and abuse, anyhow, good luck and I hope you find a dog for you.