December 11 2013 Latest news:
Robin Cottle, Reporter
Monday, September 23, 2013
From a desperate life on the streets of Romania to a nationwide charity calendar - rescue dog Lara has come a long way in less than 12 months.
The 18-month-old pooch now lives with Hornchurch teacher Judy Munford, who found her through non-profit organisation K9-Angels, which aims to provide links between dog rescuers all over the world and potential adopters.
Lara is one of 24 dogs to be chosen for next year’s Just Dogs Charity Calendar and her owner can’t wait for it to hit the shops.
Judy said: “My partner Richard and I are delighted for Lara. When we got her around Christmas last year she was a shy dog because of her history and she wasn’t great with people.
“Her whole family were killed on the street of Romania so that’s not surprising.
“But she’s come a long way in a short space of time and her obedience training has come on leaps and bounds. She recently received her first Good Citizen Kennel Club award for good behaviour.”
The 52-year-old, who is deputy head at Scargill Infants School in Mungo Park Road, Rainham, says Lara’s family were killed on the streets of Romania and thinks she would have followed the same way if the 18-month-old pup had stayed in the country much longer.
Judy entered her into the competition when she saw it advertised on Facebook and was ecstatic when Lara made it down to the final 24 - two for every month of the year.
She doesn’t know which month her dog will be appearing in yet, which the Winifred Avenue resident says adds an “element of surprise.”
“I think it’s pretty obvious what people will be getting for Christmas this year,” joked Judy.
On the wider issue of the way dogs and other animals are treated in Romania, the teacher said there needs to be education to stop thousands unnecessarily dying each year.
“They are so many stray dogs in Romania, they almost treated as vermin.
“The dogs aren’t neutered and people need to be educated on the dangers of not doing this. Fortunately Lara avoided being another sad statistic.”
A 41-year-old man has been stabbed at an address in Harold Hill.