Bright future for unloved Dogs Trust Shoreham Shih Tzu as story captures readers’ hearts

A Shih Tzu stranded for months at a Shoreham rehoming centre is ‘well on his way’ to finding a new home after a story in the Herald went viral last week.

Alfie the Shih Tzu has been waiting more than 270 days for a home
Alfie the Shih Tzu has been waiting more than 270 days for a home

Alfie was handed into Dogs Trust Shoreham in April last year – but medical conditions including diabetes and an eye condition had contributed to making his perfect match elusive.

His stint at Dogs Trust – more than 270 days – is in excess of ten times the average stay for a dog of his breed.

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But after thousands of people read and shared Alfie’s story last week, the future looks brighter for the lovable pooch.

Chris Barnard, rehoming centre assistant manager at Dogs Trust Shoreham, said: “We have been really pleased by the local public’s response to Alfie’s recent rehoming appeal.

“As Alfie is looking for quite a specific home due to his medical needs, we are still in the process of matching him to the perfect adopters.

“However, given the level of promising interest we have had, we are confident that he is well on his way to finding his forever home.”

A new owner had proved elusive since Alfie came into Dogs Trust’s care on April 25 last year, so the level of interest following the Herald’s appeal came as a surprise. The number of enquiries was so high Dogs Trust put a 72-hour application window in place on Thursday.

Applications are now being sorted through, and successful applicants are being decided by the suitability of the home they were able to offer Alfie.

Due to the different needs and backgrounds of the dogs at the Dogs Trust centres, the rehoming requirements are tailored specifically to each dog.

Regional press officer Sophie Burness said: “Our rehoming process is designed to find each dog a forever home - that is why we have to find the perfect match.”

“We pride our selves on a thorough behaviour and veterinary assessments that helps us match each dog to the right person.”

Dogs Trust are always looking to rehome the dogs at its centre. Sophie said: “Some of the people who have shown interest in Alfie may not be a perfect fit, but we will always try to suggest alternative dogs that may be more suitable.”

Online responses to Alfie were filled with adoration for the Shih Tzu. The Herald’s online version of the story (see here– which it shared with its Sussex sister titles – attracted thousands of readers, making it one of the most popular stories of the week.

Writing on Facebook, one person said: “I saw Alfie today and he is so adorable.” Another said: “How cute, I’d love him!”