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Battersea launch ‘The Paul O’Grady Veterinary Hospital’

ITV

Battersea launch ‘The Paul O’Grady Veterinary Hospital’

Today, on what would have marked the 11th anniversary of Paul O’Grady MBE becoming an Ambassador for Battersea, the animal welfare charity has announced they are honouring the late presenter by naming Battersea’s state-of-the-art clinic facilities ‘The Paul O’Grady Veterinary Hospital’.

Paul’s husband, Andre Portasio:

“Seeing how loved Paul was by so many has been truly touching. Paul was so passionate in his support of rescue animals, and it gives me some comfort to know that through the hard work and commitment of Battersea and other charities Paul’s legacy will live on.

“I know that Paul would have been pleased to know that the most disadvantaged animals he was so fond of championing are getting the love and support they deserve.” 

The organisation also plans to help thousands of animals in need with money raised from public donations following his passing. Almost 20,000 donations were made to Battersea in Paul’s honour from generous members of the public wanting to pay their respects and express their gratitude. A staggering £480,000 was donated and after consulting with Paul’s closest family and friends Battersea is sharing how the money will go towards helping those animals most in need.

The charity will spend the funds helping dogs and cats who need specialist care and treatment.

In 2022 Battersea directly cared for 2,278 dogs and 2,253 cats at their three centres. They also helped thousands more through numerous community programmes, campaigning work, supporting other rescue centres and animal welfare advocates, and sharing knowledge and advice with pet owners.

Peter Laurie, Battersea’s Chief Executive:

“We’ve been overwhelmed and deeply touched by the generous donations from thousands of people following the death of our beloved Ambassador, Paul O’Grady. It really is a testament to how loved Paul was, and we shall always be forever grateful for everything he did for us.  As an Ambassador for Battersea, especially during his 11 years filming For the Love of Dogs, Paul helped animals in their recuperation from surgery, and at times, watched as they headed offsite for specialist surgery.

“Naming our veterinary hospital after Paul, therefore, feels fitting. We are pleased to also be able to share donations with other charities that support rescue animals.  Paul was always a champion of the underdog, and we’ll be carrying on his legacy, by ensuring we use the funding to go the extra mile for animals that need costly surgery, medication, or rehabilitation.”  

From the centre, Paul hosted ‘For the Love Of Dogs‘ for eleven years – and nearly 70 episodes – with the final series Paul recorded airing recently on ITV1 and STV. During his time filming at Battersea’s London centre, Paul would spend a considerable amount of time in the Veterinary Hospital, one of his favourite places at the centre, whether that was taking dogs and cats for consultations with Battersea’s vets, visiting them before and after surgical procedures, weighing them on the scales, or helping to hand-rear new-born puppies and kittens.

Last year around 3,000 operations were carried out in Battersea’s Veterinary Hospital by a dedicated team of vets and nurses, including Veterinary Director Shaun Opperman, who, over the years, chatted to Paul on camera about hundreds of dogs receiving specialist care during their time at Battersea.

https://www.battersea.org.uk

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