Battersea appeals to knitters to help create blankets for foster dogs

Battersea is asking crafters across the country to help its most sensitive dogs, by knitting them a special security blanket.

05 March 2012
Battersea Dogs & Cats Home

Download the pattern here [pdf] 

The blankets are for Battersea’s dogs, who stay with foster carers for short periods of time if they are stressed by kennel life, or are recovering from an illness or operation. Battersea is hoping to have enough blankets to put one in every doggy bag, which also include food, bedding and toys, and are given to foster carers when they look after a dog. When the dog is rehomed, they can then take their blanket to their new home.

The blanket has been designed by Lauren O’Farrell, who knits under the name 'Deadly Knitshade', and designs patterns on her website, Lauren is also the founder of the Stitch London craft community. She explains: “Most people had a special toy or blanket when they were young which they loved to bits. The plan is to make blankets which Battersea’s foster dogs can love just as much. It will be a woolly treat to put in their doggy bags, and they can take their blanket to their new home, so it will smell really familiar and be a handmade friend in a new place.” 

Lauren designed the pattern especially for Battersea’s foster dogs, creating a patchwork blanket with different sized paw prints on some of the patches. She explains: “Patchwork blankets are easy peasy for any knitter, especially beginners. You can go wild with colours and paw prints and make them totally unique. You can even make it a team effort with each person doing different squares. I’m hoping lots of knitters go barking mad for the pattern, and the dogs fall in puppy love when the blankets are handed over."

Battersea’s plea for blankets coincides with an appeal to recruit more dog fosterers. Volunteer Manager Carly Whyborn explains: “Fostering can be from a few nights to several months and it can transform a dog’s behaviour. It can make them happier and more relaxed, which makes it easier for us to find them a new home. I’m sure the blankets will prove very popular with our foster carers and dogs, and we would be so grateful if knitters could spare the time to make them for us.”

Marcel at home with his blanketLauren Chalmers from Earlsfield works at Battersea and is currently fostering Marcel the 10 year old Staffie, as he doesn’t enjoy life in kennels. Marcel is the lucky recipient of the first fostering blanket. Lauren says: “Fostering really helps Marcel, as he is an older gent and he enjoys his home comforts. He likes nothing more than having a snooze, and like most Staffies he is a big softie, so he loves to curl up on his colourful blanket. We take it around with us and the familiar smell of it comforts him wherever we are.”  

Knitters can download the blanket pattern for free here: Download the pattern [pdf] 

Knitted blankets can then be dropped off at any of Battersea’s three sites, or sent to:

Dog blanket appeal
Battersea Dogs & Cats Home
4 Battersea Park Road

For any queries, please call 020 7627 7883.


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