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It’s a dog’s life for Southend Hospital fundraiser Malachy O’Sullivan

02 June 2016


Is your pooch simply pawsome? Then why not bring your four-legged friend along to a fun dog show and sponsored walk being held on Sunday June 12 in Priory Park, Southend?

The canine-centric event is being organised by Southend Hospital fundraiser Malachy O'Sullivan, pictured centre, in aid of the hospital's Keyhole Cancer Appeal.

Malachy is pictured with (left to right) Jude Williams, owner of Bobby the Westie, Jude's sister, hospital voluntary services manager Jane O'Connell, owner of both yellow Labrador Daisy (held by daughter Kate O'Connell) and Meg the black Labrador.

Also joining the doggie get-together to promote the event were hospital Pets as Therapy volunteers Sylvia Andrews with Tibetan spaniels Lily, (held by Malachy) and Poppy and Sylvia Wand and Buddy the Labrador.

Registration starts from 1pm on June 12, with the sponsored walk around the park at 1.30pm and the dog show begins at 2pm.

"The emphasis is very much on fun," says Malachy. "Classes include 'dog that looks most like owner', 'awesome old timer', 'waggiest tail'. It's open to pedigrees and crossbreeds alike."

"Dogs bring such joy to people's lives and a dog show on a summer Sunday - a lovely way to spend the afternoon," says Jane. "Sadly, Daisy is blind, so I could enter her in best disabled dog category, as well as most gorgeous pure breed dog - which she and Meg are, of course!"

Entry is £7 per dog. Call 01702 385337 for a sponsor form or email fundraising@southend.nhs.uk

Pets as Therapy (PAT) dogs and their owners are regular fixtures around the hospital wards. Specially trained and meticulously groomed, their presence has been proven to be beneficial for patients.

Keyhole Cancer Appeal

The Keyhole Cancer appeal aims to raise £600,000 for the provision of a new state-of-the-art laparoscopic (keyhole surgery) theatre suite at Southend University hospital. Upon completion surgeons will be able to perform the latest and most complex keyhole procedures for patients undergoing cancer and general surgery.

Hundreds of Southend patients are likely to benefit each year; these include people suffering with bowel and prostate cancer or gynecological conditions. Many of these patients would have previously had to have 'open' surgery which would have meant longer hospital stays and recovery times and greater post-operative pain and scarring.

For more information, call Jane O'Connell on 07561 103988.