A Rugby dog rescue trustee battling breast cancer has raised more than £2,000 with a sponsored head shave to help a seriously ill puppy found abandoned in a laundry detergent box.
Mother-of-three Trisha Shaw is undergoing chemotherapy after a post-surgery pathology report suggested the cancer may have entered her bloodstream – meaning she will lose her hair and is vulnerable to infection.
Mrs Shaw, from Warwick, was ‘heartbroken’ when a seriously-ill eight-week-old puppy, Julius, with open sores was brought in after being found abandoned.
She said: “I know that most people shave their heads for charity because they want to, as a gesture of solidarity with someone close to them.
“That makes my fundraiser a bit different as Julius is obviously a dog, not a person.
“But Julius and I have something in common that bonds us – like Julius has, I’m going to lose my hair.”
The volunteer of three years spoke of her frustration as her vulnerability to infection meant she could not hold Julius.
She said: “Not being able to hold him was very frustrating, my instant reaction is always to put them in my arms to reassure them.”
Explaining how Julius was abandoned, Mrs Shaw said a man carrying a laundry detergent box approached a woman in the street and said: ‘you look like a dog lady, do you want this?’
The woman, not knowing Julius was in the box, asked the man to leave the container on her daughter’s doorstep – Julius was then discovered inside the box and the dog warden was called.
Mrs Shaw has chosen to have her hair cut this evening (Thursday) at Experience Hair Design on Regent Street, Rugby.
She said: “My hair was very long, now it’s shoulder length, over the last 24 hours I have started losing it.
“I chose Experience Hair Design as the owner is a big supporter of Pawprints.
“She has been very kind to me throughout my illness and has agreed to stay open later so I can have my hair cut without anyone else in the salon because it’s going to be quite emotional.”
Mrs Shaw said volunteering with Pawprints keeps her mind away from her illness and gives her strength. She said she will continue volunteering through her illness, and hopes she will have more time to spend helping dogs when her chemotherapy finishes in November.
She said the £2,000 raised so far is enough to cover an average month’s vet bills for the charity.
To make a donation, visit www.justgiving.com/fundraising/trisha-shaw.