A terrified lurcher, who spent almost a year with Blue Cross learning to overcome her fears, has finally found a loving home where she continues to build confidence by the day.

When sad stray Dora first arrived at our Hertfordshire rehoming centre she was so petrified of humans that she would cower in the corner of her kennel when anyone tried to approach.

Nobody knows what made her so scared, but her incredibly timid behaviour indicated that her past was likely to have been filled with sadness and neglect.

Dora, who was known as Tori while she was at the centre, desperately needed and wanted a loving home but was so shy and anxious that she wasn't able to settle anywhere.

Dora during her rehabilitation at the Hertfordshire rehoming centre
Dora during her rehabilitation at the Hertfordshire rehoming centre

Gradually, though, our patient team worked to bring the now three-year-old dog out of her shell and taught her that people couldn't only be trusted, but also shower her with love.

And in March, after 294 days of rehabilitation, she left the centre and went to live in nearby Stevenage with Alison and Peter Fitzgerald and Luca, a seven-year-old greyhound who the couple had rescued many years before. She has made huge progress, and her lovable personality is now shining through in abundance.

Alison said: “Dora is settling in so well, she is still a bit nervous around strangers but has become very comfortable around us, to the extent that I am already calling her a 'little madam' as she has bags of personality, knows her own mind and is definitely a very plucky and affectionate little lady. 

"We feel privileged that she has joined our family, where she will have a loving home forever.

“We want to thank everyone at Blue Cross Hertfordshire for looking after Dora so well and contributing in such a big way towards making her the lovely little lady she has become.” 

Dora at the beach with Luca

[Above: Dora relaxing on the beach with pal Luca; visits to the coast are now one of the once-terrified dog's favourite pastimes.]

Hannah Payne, Animal Welfare Assistant at Blue Cross Hertfordshire, said: “We were worried that Dora wouldn’t be able to find a home as she was in such a bad mental state when she arrived with us.

"Dora was terrified of people and she would cower in the corner of her kennel or try to run away when anyone came near her. It took us a long time to slowly help her understand that humans were not to fear.

“We’re delighted that she’s now in a wonderful happy home now with loving owners who’re truly a perfect match.”

Click here to find out more about helping shy and anxious dogs.

— Page last updated 21/08/2018