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UK's loneliest dog desperate for home after more than TWO YEARS in kennels

RSPCA behaviourists have spent years working with Bob and want to find him a special home where he’ll finally have a family of his own

Bob has been dubbed the loneliest dog in the UK after spending most of his life in RSPCA care.

The three-year-old Presa Canaria cross arrived in RSPCA care in April 2019 after being found injured and straying. He has now been with the charity for 775 days; that’s more than TWO YEARS.

Staff, volunteers and behaviourists at the RSPCA’s Birmingham Animal Centre spent around 18 months working with Bob to help prepare him for a new home and he’s now been patiently waiting for more than six months but has been overlooked more than 200 times.

Jake Cowing, who has been taking care of Bob, said: “We spent an extended period of time working with Bob behaviourally and helping prepare him for a new home and then, of course, lockdown hit and delayed us being able to find him a new home.

“He’s such a fabulous lad with a great character and I hope we can find him the right family but he does require quite a special home so we need to make sure it’s the right match.

“Bob finds being restrained and walking on a lead incredibly difficult and has found kennels really challenging. While he may look like a big tough lad he’s actually a really sensitive soul. We believe, in the past, some well-meaning but misinformed techniques have been used to help Bob walk on a lead so we’ve had to try to unpick these problems and start from scratch.

“But as we got to know him we discovered that he is an absolute sweetheart. He’s very friendly and loves to play. Once he trusts you, he is the most loyal companion and friend you’ll ever find.”

After months of careful, patient and positive reinforcement training, staff were able to walk Bob calmly around their fields on a long line. He likes to carry a tennis ball around as a pacifier so he can chew it if he becomes stressed and it seems to really calm him down.

“Time never seems to be on Bob’s side,” Jake added. “He’d only just become available for rehoming when lockdown hit and we had to close to the public. His special needs meant that we would only be able to match him to someone once he’d spent time getting to know them and we couldn’t facilitate this due to the Government’s restrictions.

“Now we’re partially open again we get lots of people admiring him and inquiring about giving him a home but, once they find out about all of his quirks, they seem to be put off. Since Bob has been with us he’s seen 221 of our dogs go off to their new homes, but he’s still here waiting.

“Ideally we’re looking for a home with a large garden or private land big enough for Bob to exercise and play without the need to go out on lead walks, at least until he’s settled and bonded with his new family. We would provide ongoing support and guidance to any continued lead work but we feel he’d be happiest in a setting where leads were not a daily necessity of life.”

Staff would like to find an experienced adult-only home where he’d be the only pet. He thrives with routine, familiarity and spending time with his friends.

“Two years is a long, long time - and Bob has spent more than two thirds of his life in kennels,” Jake said. “While we’ve done the best for him, we desperately want to see him in a home of his own with someone who can give him the life he deserves! He has overcome a tough past and is our champion, a survivor and our friend. He’s a big, silly clown who will change the life of his adopters. And anyone who takes him on will certainly change his.”

Find out more about Bob on Find A Pet, complete a Perfect Match form or contact birmac@rspca.org.uk.

To help the RSPCA continue rescuing, rehabilitating and rehoming animals in desperate need of care please visit our website or call our donation line on 0300 123 8181.

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