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Page last updated at 16:17 GMT, Thursday, 2 December 2010
Windsor dogs' home celebrates anniversary with fair
by Emma Midgley
BBC Berkshire Reporter

Dogs called Chantelle and Preston
Preston and Chantelle attended the charity's anniversary party

Since it was founded in 1860 the Battersea Dogs and Cats Home has cared for over three million animals.

The home also has a branch in Windsor providing care for up to 170 dogs and 80 cats.

Vicky Snook is a senior rehomer who has worked at the dog and cat charity in Windsor for five years.

She and two dogs who are waiting to find new owners, Preston and Chantelle, attended the charity's glamorous 150th anniversary celebrations.

Celebrity spotting

Vicky said she had enjoyed spotting celebrities such as comedian Catherine Tate, Queen's Brian May and X Factor winners Alexandra Burke and Shane Ward.

The charity's President, HRH Prince Michael of Kent GCVO, also attended.

The night was hosted by actress and TV personality Amanda Holden.

Vicky said: "It was amazing. My two dogs were there as well, celebrity spotting."

Many more animal charities have sprung up since Battersea Dogs Home was founded 150 years ago.

However, Vicky said the work carried out by the charity was more important than ever.

Financial crisis

"Financially people can't care for their dog or afford vets' fees," she said.

"We're seeing the numbers of strays increasing which we think is a direct result of the financial crisis."

Before becoming a rehoming specialist, Vicki studied animal welfare for three years at college. She said animals had always been a "passion" for her.

She has now been at Battersea Dogs Home for five years.

Vicky said Christmas could be a busy time for the home, due to unwanted pets being given as presents.

"Even now we get a lot of people that approach us and say they want a puppy or a dog as a Christmas present for their friends and family which is quite sad and alarming," she said.

"Each year is busier than the last. Seasonally this time of year is busy for both animals coming to us or leaving our care."

The dogs home is holding its Battersea Old Windsor's Christmas Fayre on Sunday 5 December, with presents for cats and dogs, or a chance to meet Santa Paws.

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