Thursday, 8 September 2011

Forty years at the sharp end

I have always been in awe of Joanna Mason, but talking to her earlier today made me remember why she's a complete hero. Someone who should be treasured, rewarded, decorated.
Joanna has been rescuing Staffordshire Bull Terriers for the last 40 years. It's been an uphill struggle and one that has broken her heart so many times.
In 40 years she's taken in turned around countless dogs that were unlucky, let down, badly damaged, extremely poorly or just badly abused. How many times do you think she's been bitten?
That statistic reveals so much about the breed she has devoted so much of her life to.
Joanna sounds just as perky as the first time I spoke to her.
The dogs keep her young she says.
Her energy puts me to shame.
Joanna is 87.
Wouldn't it be lovely if she could look back at the last 40 years and be able to relax, but never has the breed been in more need.
Joanna has some revolutionary ideas to sort things out.
A breeding holiday of five years to give rescue a chance to catch up.
It used to be old dogs she mainly helps, these days dogs are only weeks old when they need her help.
And Joanna would like some control over breeding and crossing these dogs, someone taking charge and slowing things down and incentivising neutering.
Wise words from someone who loves her breed with all her heart.
Let's hope Joanna sees some of her dreams come true so she can retire without fear for the future.


Anonymous said...

I've been a dog owner for the past 24 years, all those years ago I would see the odd Staffie from time to time but the numbers have increased so much that most of the local dogs I see on my walks are Staffies or Staffie crosses, not to mention many dogs homes being full of unwanted Staffords and crosses. I feel for the people who are involved with Staffie rescue, well done to this lady, but how sad that her services are needed more now than 40 years ago.

Anonymous said...

Co-incidentally, I have just spent the wee small hours viewing Staffies on the Rescue Remedies website. The viewing gets harder and harder as you try to absorb the harrowing stories. So much pain in the world, but so much love also as people devote their lives to 'rescue'.