Last night as we started to eat our takeaway pizza with Albie & Kizzie waiting patiently for their small piece of crust we saw the unfolding news of a heartbreaking fire at Manchester Dogs Home. According to police reports a 14 year old boy has now been arrested on suspicion of arson however there may be further updates on this as the day goes on.
Despite the heroic and valiant efforts of both firefighters, police crews, the staff at Manchester Dogs Home and members of the public 43 animals died, they are believed to be the dogs that had found their home and were waiting for their adoption to be completed. (UPDATE: According to reports on the BBC News the figure has risen to 60)
Members of the public have rushed to the scene responding to the urgent calls for food, blankets, leads, bowls, well everything you can imagine a dog might need really.
Some of the amazing donations already received from local members of the public, mainly blankets and food we believe. (Photo courtesy of Richard Wheatstone report for Manchester News)
Manchester Dogs Home have tweeted on their account in the early hours of this morning to thank everyone for their support and to say they will update everyone today on what you can do to help. In the meantime read below for ways you can already help.
What can we do to help.
As dog owners ourselves our immediate instinct is to help and as such Albie and Kizzie are donating their pawket money to Manchester Dogs Home this month, they said they wanted to do what they can to help and we have promised them we will match their donation.
From a business perspective we of course want to help as well but we fully understand that at times gestures like this can be misinterpreted as profiteering. So what do we do? We aren’t a big, corporation making millions of pounds a year, nor even thousands or hundreds but still we can understand this point of view. However when we launched Barks & Bunnies we created the tag line #lovethemhappy and it is a central part of our business, we really do love them happy, dogs rabbits and every anipal in between. So after much thought and a sleepless night worrying about what is the right thing to do and so we settled on two things;
Firstly we would like you to join us for a minutes silence tonight at 8pm using the hashtag #manchesterdogshome. We will be tweeting a link to the Just Giving page that the Manchester Evening news created (https://www.justgiving.com/ManchesterDogsHomeMEN). It would be wonderful if you could do the same. We hope this way we can remember all 43 of the dogs who sadly lost their life but by including the link to donate we can look forwards too and remember the 150 who lives have been turned upside down as they find themselves in new kennels or foster homes.
Secondly, I know that so many of the Barks & Bunnies family and other animal lovers across the UK have already donated money and this is best done through the Just Giving page however if you want to send the dogs anything from our store we will be able to send everything in one box and it wouldn’t be right to charge you all an individual postage rate. Enter code ‘FREEDEL’ at the checkout to get your order delivered to Manchester Dogs Home free of charge (this only applies to orders being sent to the charity address). This offer will run until midnight Sunday September 14th. (If you are overseas it’s not a problem, the offer is still valid, contact us if you need help).
We will get in touch with Manchester Dogs Home within the next couple of weeks to ask if there is anything else we can do to help, often it is as time passes that charities really need our help as the press attention recedes and the reminders for us all slowly fade.
We hope that you can trust our intentions come from a truly honest place and we won’t be publicising the free delivery offer at all so that it can retain it’s simple honesty. If you believe in what we are doing then please do tell your friends but there is no pressure to, we will tell the Barks & Bunnies family via our social media channels and our e-newsletter but we won’t do anything else.
Lastly, we pray for all the dogs that lost their life, we hope they have crossed the bridge in comfort and that the two dogs and rabbits I grew up with were there to greet them and show them around, I am sure it is the biggest green field where they can run to their hearts content.