Elderly dog found in sub-zero temperatures has a loving new home | TeamDogs
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Elderly dog found in sub-zero temperatures has a loving new home

Bill was rescued by the RSPCA following a call from a concerned member of the public

Katie Collier

Posted 3 months ago

Bill connected with his new family straight away. (Image: Adam Harnett/SWNS)

By Joe Pagnelli  

When elderly crossbreed dog Bill was found lying in sub-zero temperatures by the RSPCA, they feared the worst – but happily, he made a swift recovery and found a loving forever home. 

The 15-year-old dog had been left out in the cold at a property in Hull, East Yorkshire, for two days as the owner believed he had already died. 

Bill was found in an exposed porch, lying on a wet blanket by an RSPCA inspector in February, following reports from a concerned neighbour. 

He was rushed to surgery to remove a lump in his back and underwent a series of operations to have tumours removed from his face and body.  

This week, Bill has started a new chapter in his life after he was adopted by Fiona Cunniff, her husband, Paul, and daughter, Amelie, who live in Acomb, near York. 

Fiona said: “We have a Jack Russell dog called Nelly who is 15 and we thought it would be nice to have a friend to help keep her young.  

“Then we were looking on the RSPCA York branch website and came across Bill and although we were looking for a younger dog, we just really felt a connection.   

“We went to see him with Nelly and he was so lovely and got on with us all so we were smitten. He is such a happy boy who wants to be with you all the time. He is very cuddly and he is happy to have his head on your knee and be stroked. 


Bill is now happy and comfortable with his new family. (Image: Adam Harnett/SWNS) 

“He wasn’t house trained when he came to us but has done so well – he only had one accident and has just come on leaps and bounds.  

“We thought with him being an older dog he would just plod about and sleep a lot but he has so much more energy and enthusiasm for life now – he is living it to the full and he absolutely loves his walks.”  

When Inspector Laura Barber was sent to the address following a report from a concerned member of the public she could see Bill was very weak – but his tail started to wag at her approach.  

Laura said: “This poor fella had been left out in sub-zero temperatures as sadly his owner thought he had already died. I have no idea how he survived but I was so grateful to see his tail wag when I arrived.   

“Bill was signed over into our care as he was in need of costly veterinary treatment. He was thin and had a huge, open sore on his back.”   

The RSPCA Scarborough and District branch took in Bill and he needed emergency surgery to remove the lump on his back, as well as neutering and a dental procedure.   

He was then transferred to the York, Harrogate and District branch of the RSPCA and rehabilitated by dedicated staff at the centre until he was ready to be rehomed.  

Laura said she is delighted to see his progress and how he is now enjoying life in his forever home.  

She said: “When I first went to Bill I thought he was really going to struggle to make it but I am so pleased he has thanks to fantastic team work.  

“The Scarborough branch of the RSPCA carried out the initial treatment and then he was transferred to the York and Harrogate District branch for more treatment by the local vet – and staff at the centre spent time rehabilitating him so he was ready for his forever home.  

“I am delighted he is doing so well and is clearly enjoying life – which is exactly what he deserves.” 

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