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RSPCA take in dogs rescued from sinking houseboat in Staffordshire

Owner heartbroken to give up dogs after losing his home - but RSPCA step in to help him

A man who lived on a houseboat was forced to make the heartbreaking decision to give up his dogs when his home started to sink.

He contacted the RSPCA for help with his beloved dogs - terrier-cross Arthur and Jack Russell terrier Bennie - earlier this month.

This week, RSPCA animal collection officer (ACO) Cara Gibbon went to visit the man at his houseboat in Burton-on-Trent, Staffordshire.

“He was so distraught to give up his dogs but he also didn’t want his dogs to suffer when he became homeless so made the difficult decision to sign them over into our care,” ACO Gibbon explained.

“It must have been so hard for him but he did the right thing - by putting the dogs’ welfare first.

“He had been living on a houseboat but, unfortunately, it was sinking, leaving him and his dogs homeless.

“He reached out to us and asked for help and we could see that his need was urgent so I went out to meet with him.”

Twelve-year-old Arthur was rescued at two by his owner and nine-month-old Bennie joined them recently as a friend for the senior pooch.

The two dogs were taken in by RSPCA Coventry where they are doing well. Once they’ve been assessed, staff will be looking to find a forever home for the duo.

“When I first took them in and took them to the vets for check-ups, they were obviously very frightened and confused,” ACO Gibbon added.

“But they’ve been with kennel staff for a few days now and are settling in well.

“I went to visit them and they were having such fun playing in the garden and running in the sunshine. It was lovely to see.

“I’m sure we’ll find them a fabulous new home with owners who will love them and care for them as much as their previous owner did.

“I’d like to urge other people who find themselves in difficult situations to always reach out to charities and agencies and ask for help.”

Anyone who is interested in finding out more about Arthur and Bennie should contact RSPCA Coventry & Nuneaton branch by calling 02476 336616.

To help the RSPCA rescue and rehome more dogs like Arthur and Benny please donate by visiting


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