National award recognition for Aberdeenshire dog rescue sanctuary
Easier access to your trusted, local news. Subscribe to a digital package and support local news publishing.
A dog rescue sanctuary based near Turriff has been recognised for its work with a national award.
Until Every Dog Has A Home won the UK Animal Rescue/Rehoming Centre of the Year accolade at the Animal Star Awards.
The ceremony celebrated animals and humans that have done extraordinary things for one another and also raised funds for various animal charities.
Until Every Dog Has A Home is based on a farm close to Turriff and was founded by behavioural dog trainer Karen Fairclough.
Karen, who is originally from Forres, said: "We're a small volunteer run, non-profit dog rescue. We're a little different to most other rescues because we only intake dogs with severe behavioural issues.
"We specialise in working with dogs with aggressive tendencies and dog on human bite histories. There are very few rescues in the UK who can accept a dog who has previously bitten a human.
"We offer rescue, rehabilitation and re-homing for these dogs. For those who are too troubled and don't manage to complete rehab and pass the necessary assessments, we offer lifetime sanctuary here.
"This means that they live out life as a part of our family. There are a few reasons which can make us come to the decision that a dog can't be re-homed."
Until Every Dog Has A Home is a small organisation run by Karen and one other person.
She added: "There's myself, I'm the founder of the rescue and also the trainer for all the dogs.
"The dogs under the care of our rescue, including those in lifetime sanctuary, undergoing rehabilation or awaiting rehoming, live on my farm with my 13 dogs and I.
"I also run my own training business in Aberdeenshire doing one-to-one behavioural work with clients and their dogs.
"We also have general manager Ross Beveridge, who answers the majority of the messages on our Facebook page, coordinates re-homing and is involved in all the important decision making regarding everything to do with the rescue.
"Ross is also a professional in the dog world running his dog walking business in East Lothian and is always incredibly busy with all the background jobs which keep our rescue going."
The rescue sanctuary has purpose built, standalone kennels for each of the dogs, a secure training and exercise area, bigger yards and permission to access the surrounding fields.
The kennels are all heated, secure and have CCTV so that the dogs can be monitored at all times.
Karen was raised in Forres and attended Pilmuir Primary, Forres Academy and lived and worked in the town until she moved to the farm five years ago.
She added: "We make the dogs a part of our family for as long as they're with us. They have daily walks and training, and they take it in turns to come out for day trips.
"We try and make their stay as fulfilling and 'normal' as possible.
"All the dogs which have come to us have done so because they require professional handling and rehabilitation.
"Some dogs come to us as the owner felt out of their depth or unable to cope. Others come to us from other rescues who don't feel that they could provide the dog with what they need, either by way of accommodation, handling, training or because the dog is simply too dangerous to put into a foster home or a public access kennel environment."