A DOG rescue charity is appealing for people to dig deep and help it replenish its stocks.

SNDogs is asking for items including food, dental sticks, leads and collars, and toys to be donated in its network of donation baskets around Swindon.

“We particularly need dog food,” said trustee and volunteer Clare Fantini-Stephens.

“We’ll even take open packets, for example if you have suddenly lost you dog. We’ll gratefully accept anything,” she added.

SNDogs runs a foster organisation in Pinehurst, where needy dogs are looked after in a network of volunteer homes across the town.

“We take in any dog we can depending on how many foster homes we have available, and then rehome them with suitable families,” said Mrs Fantini-Stephens.

The charity has grown since it began in 2012 when it rehomed four dogs in its first year. In 2018, 120 dogs found loving homes, and this year already 63 dogs have been helped.

“We’re well on the way to beating last year’s target,” said Mrs Fantini-Stephens.

“People hand dogs in for all sorts of reasons,” said Mrs Fantini-Stephens.

“Sometimes people have to move accommodation and can’t take the dog with them, a relationship breaks down, people get sick, lose their jobs or older people find they can’t look after them anymore. We had one dog handed in recently from a domestic abuse case.”

The charity started when a group of volunteers began walking the dogs in Swindon dog pound, when it was near Drove Vets in Wroughton.

“The volunteers started to get to know the dogs, and from there they wanted to find homes for them and it just grew.” said Mrs Fantini-Stephens.

The charity asks for a £200 donation for each dog when it is adopted, to cover the cost of previous care,including neutering, vaccination, dental work and flea treatment.

“People say ‘oh that’s a lot’, but it doesn’t cover everything. It doesn’t cover all the work that has gone into looking after the dog before it is rehomed,” said Mrs Fantini-Stephens.

As the organisation grew SNDogs started to take in hounds from places like Spain and Romania as well as locally.

“Often these dogs wouldn’t stand a chance of being rehomed out there,” said Mrs Fantini-Stephens.

The charity relies on volunteers for everything from fostering, home checking potential owners, walking dogs, organising events and fundraisers. It is also looking for more trustees.

Mrs Fantini-Stephens got involved with the charity when her son went off to boarding school.

She said: “My husband also works away quite a lot and I just thought ‘what was I going to do with all this free time on my hands?’.

"I heard of the charity, and started off helping with events.

“It does take up a lot of time but I love it, it is just great,” she said.

All dogs looking for a home will be at next monthly dog walk on Saturday at Coate Water starting at 10.30am.

“It a wonderful opportunity for anyone looking for a new dog to come along and meet our dogs and see if one suits you,” added Mrs Fantini-Stephens.

A prospective owner then has a home check and a trial period with the dog.

“We do rehome dogs with families, and we do place dogs in flats as long as it’s the right dog. I’ve even done a home check on a canal boat,” added Mrs Fantini-Stephens.

If you can help with donations, baskets can be found in the Lanterns Cafe in Old Town, Drover Veterinary Hospital, Eastcott Vets, and The Bakers Arms in Upper Stratton.