A DOG-walking Coventry University student is ‘overwhelmed’ after being recognised with a top volunteering prize at Crufts.
Katie Young was presented with the prestigious Cinnamon Trust Volunteer of the Year Award from the Young Kennel Club in acknowlegdment of her dedicated efforts for the trust.
Twice a week for the last two years, 20-year-old Human Resources student has walked 82-year-old Maureen Rowark’s Poodle-Shih Tzu-Maltese Cross, Smudge.
Katie said she was still in disbelief that she had won.
She added: “I signed up for volunteering in sixth form and I’ve loved it ever since, as I get my dog fix with Smudge.
“He’s a lovely dog – very friendly and always gets excited when I take him out.
“We have a close bond, and I would definitely recommend more young people sign up and start volunteering.”
The Trust’s scheme encourages young people who love dogs to help frail, older people who also love dogs but are unable to fully care for a canine companion themselves.
Retired former administration worker Maureen said Katie had not only made a huge impact on her life, but also enables Smudge to keep fit and healthy.
She added: “Katie is a wonderful friend, she really helps me out and is very generous.
“She’s very polite and gentle, not only to me but also to Smudge and that’s why he takes to her.
“I’ve had Smudge since he was two months old and I wouldn’t have been able to walk him otherwise – she is absolutely wonderful.”