Page last updated at 12:20 GMT, Saturday, 17 April 2010 13:20 UK

Shot Pc from Lancashire supports dogs' charity

Pc Katie Johnson
Pc Johnson was hit by 12 pellets outside the Hospital Inn

A police officer who was shot by robbers in Lancashire has become an ambassador of a national dogs charity.

Pc Katie Johnson is supporting Hounds for Heroes, an organisation which specialises in providing dogs for injured servicemen and women.

She was hit by 12 pellets from a shotgun at a pub in Bamber Bridge, Preston, on New Years Eve in 2007, but has made a full recovery.

"Dogs play a huge role in helping the police," she said.

Pc Johnson, who works as a dog handler for Lancashire Police, was one of the first officers to arrive at the Hospital Inn in Brindle Road in Bamber Bridge.

As she approached the scene, robber Wayne McDonald blasted her left leg with a shotgun.

Lancashire Police said it was "sheer luck" she did not suffer serious injuries.

During her rehabilitation she read a book written by Allen Parton, the founder of Hounds for Heroes, and was inspired by his passion.

It has been a dream of mine to have a charity that works specifically for these people who routinely put their lives in danger
Allen Patten, founder of Hounds for Heroes

She said: "I was honoured when Allen invited me to become an ambassador of Hounds for Heroes.

"Having been a police dog handler for nearly three years, I fully understand the role dogs can play and how they can help improve people's lifestyle."

She has recently trained her dog, Bertie, in explosives.

Mr Patten started the charity after he received a serious head injury while on duty in the Gulf back in 1991.

He was given Endal, a Labrador, to assist him and the dog changed his life.

He said: "It has been a dream of mine to have a charity that works specifically for these people who routinely put their lives in danger.

"Hounds for Heroes is our chance of giving people something back.

"We owe them a great debt and this is our way of saying 'thank you'."

The charity's latest project is the Puppies on Parade Appeal. It hopes to raise £100,000 to buy and train five Labrador pups up to a standard that will assist injured or disabled people.

McDonald, 47, who was convicted of wounding with intent and robbery, was told he would serve at least 12 years for the attack on Pc Johnson.



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