Paul O’Grady: ‘I’d adopt all the dogs if I could!’

Paul O’Grady tells TV Times magazine about heading back to Battersea Dogs and Cats Home in the hope he might help find homes for more animals this Christmas…

Hi Paul! We know you like adopting animals…Will there be another canine companion to add to the O’Grady household this year?
“I’m always tempted by another dog! I’ve got four dogs now but I’ve also got loads of other animals. On the last count I had nine sheep, six pigs, four owls, two goats and chickens too. But as soon as I walk into Battersea there’s always one that catches my eye – I’ll hear their story and it just breaks my heart. I would adopt them all if I could but it’s a lot of work!”

Are there any particular dogs that have caught your eye?
“One of the dogs I meet is a lovely little Staffie called Buddy. He’s only got three legs, bless him. They’ve no idea how he lost his leg. He’s so affectionate and he’s a great example of a Staffordshire Bull Terrier. There’s also a really sad story about a Great Dane cross called Faith. She was lying in a ditch in a field and she was so thin she couldn’t walk. She was about half of what her body weight should have been and she had sores on her feet. She was found just in time really else who knows what could have happened. She’s on the mend now, which is lovely, but it doesn’t bear thinking about how she got in that state.”

Are you surprised at the different reasons why all these dogs end up at Battersea?
“Yes. Some of the dogs are there as they’ve been badly abused and some of them are there because their owners have died. I feel really sorry for all them – you see them in their kennels and you can see they are wondering how they got there, they don’t know why.”

What’s the centre like for the dogs who have to stay?
“Battersea is a really happy place even though some of the stories of how the dogs come here is really sad. Being able to see them get better and be loved and cared for is what makes it so wonderful.”

Paul O’Grady: For The Love of Dogs at Christmas can be seen on Christmas Day at 5.15pm on ITV.