This month we’re all about Battersea Dogs & Cats Home! We love all creatures great and small and are proud to be supporting such an incredible charity. We chat to the Rehoming and Welfare Manager of the charity, Sean Welland and discuss all things kitty cat and puppy dogs!
Hi Sean! Tell us a bit about how Battersea operates and how it aims to help every dog and cat through its doors?
Battersea Dogs & Cats Home believes that every dog and cat should live in a home where they are treated with love, care and respect. We aim to never turn away a dog or cat in need of our help, caring for them until their owners or loving new homes can be found, no matter how long it takes. We care for over 7,000 animals each year including nearly 4,000 dogs and over 3,000 cats. On average, 10 dogs and 9 cats arrive at our three centres every day – Battersea London, Battersea Old Windsor, and Battersea Brands Hatch. Once assessed, the animals are listed as ‘ready for rehoming’, which means the process of finding them a perfect forever home can begin.
What words of advice would you have for someone thinking of adopting a new four-legged friend? And what are the dos and don’ts when it comes to deciding on a new companion?
Once you’ve registered with a Home like Battersea, the staff will guide you through the rehoming process and answer any questions you may have. It’s vital to bear in mind the long-term responsibility of owning a dog or cat - it’s a commitment you must be ready to make. Patience is also important - rescue centres will match your preferences and circumstances with the right dog or cat, so the perfect fit may not turn up straight away. However, this ensures that your needs are matched to the needs of the animal and a successful pairing is more likely. While the excitement of rehoming a dog or cat is one of the best things about the process, remember there will be ongoing costs such as vet bills, pet insurance fees, microchipping, vaccinations and food. Having a pet isn’t cheap, but the love and good times you’ll share is like nothing else and, once you’ve found your perfect match, you’ll have a friend for life.
We are super excited to be working in collaboration with Battersea! The Papergang x Battersea box is filled with all things dog and cat and is illustrated by the talented Allison Black. How does something like a simple stationery box help aid the charity?
Battersea receives no Government funding towards the care of our animals and relies heavily on donations from members of the public. Alongside regular giving, remembering Battersea in your Will, and other fundraising activities such as marathons or bake sales, purchasing products officially linked with the Home are vital for helping us to raise much-needed funds. It may seem simple, but every penny raised really does help towards caring for the dogs and cats at Battersea until they can find their happy ending and begin a new life with a loving family.
At Ohh Deer we love all creatures great and small, what drew you to working with the incredible charity of Battersea Dogs & Cats home? And what would you say is the most rewarding part of your job?
From a young age, I’ve always wanted to work with dogs and help those that aren’t fortunate enough to have had the best start in life. Battersea is an amazing place to work and I’m proud of what we all do – both staff and volunteers - across all three of our centres. We all work incredibly hard to ensure the dogs and cats in our care are well looked after, however long or short their stay with us may be. The most rewarding part of my job is seeing our longer-stay residents leave to join their new families - it always puts a smile on your face and a lump in your throat because you were able to help that animal when they needed it the most and now they’ve finally found their forever home.
ABOUT THE ILLUSTRATOR - ALLISON BLACK
Allison Black was the appointed illustrator to bring the November box to life! We love Allison’s use of colour and playful style. We asked Allison a few questions about the box...
How did you go about creating the designs for the box, what is your process?
A couple of items in the box are actually older pieces that have been re-imagined, so it was a unique process working through the refresh and then creating new work that still felt cohesive. I started with one key piece, which was based on a card design concept and layout from a few years ago. I developed new holiday inspired characters for it, and then tried to incorporate those characters into the other items as well. When working on a collection like this, I like to spotlight a few key characters, so you can "get to know" them as you use different items!
How do you feel knowing your designs are representing the amazing charity of Battersea Dogs & Cats home?
I love it!!! I'm from the US so I hadn't heard of Battersea Dogs & Cats home until I did a couple birthday cards for them through Ohh Deer. I checked out their website at that time and I was so impressed with all the work they're doing to find homes for pets in need and make changes to backward animal cruelty laws. I come from a family with two veterinarians and I own two rescue dogs myself, so I know the importance of caring for animals and teaching others to respect them as well.
What was your favorite product to design in the box? (Without spoiling the surprise for our subscribers!)
I usually stick with super-cute renderings, but for this box I've drawn something a little different! There's something adorable about an animal that's a little on the ugly side and I had way to much fun with this one!
Head over to the website to get signed up and receive some super stationery items in the post!