Pam Ferris, Blue Cross Ambassador, is putting the kettle on for this year's Paws for Tea fundraising event for sick, injured and homeless pets. While we wait for the tea to brew, Pam tells us all about her pet subjects, dogs Stan and Elsie...
Q: Who shares your sofa?
Pam: A long legged lurcher stretches out on half the sofa with a small Jack Russell curled up at the other end. My husband and I take turns squeezing in between them.
Q: Describe each of your pets in three words
Pam: Stan is elegant, athletic, lazy. Elsie is excitable, tireless, passionate.
Q: How did Stan and Elsie come to join your family?
Pam: We rescued Stan from a local charity. He’d been dumped with his two sisters at nearly a year old. He was just a scabby skeleton when we first saw him – now he’s so beautiful he stops the traffic. When he had settled in we wanted a friend for him, so we got Elsie as a puppy locally. I had a few months off filming and wanted to be home to help her integrate. Now they get on well despite a big size and temperament difference.
Q: Why do you love your dogs?
Pam: Oh so many reasons! Maybe the most important is seeing the world through their eyes when we’re out walking. The joy they experience is simple and profound.
Q: What’s the most extravagant thing you’ve bought for them?
Pam: Matching memory foam dog beds – they love them.
Q: What’s the best thing about having pets?
Pam: The love.
Q: What are Stan and Elsie’s worst habits?
Pam: Stan sings with excitement when we put our boots on for a walk – it’s so loud you can’t hear yourself think! Elsie tries to keep the garden free of pigeons.
Q: Where’s your favourite place to go with your dogs?
Pam: Holidays at Holkham beach in North Norfolk. Miles of sand and woods and no roads.
Q: What’s the best pet advice you’ve been given, and by whom?
Pam: Henry James the great author said: “Three things are important in human life – the first is to be kind, the second is to be kind and the third is to be kind.” He wasn’t talking specifically about animals, but I think it’s pretty good all round advice.
Q: Why did you choose a rescue pet?
Pam: A brief search on the internet shows how many people are selling puppies for profit and how many beautiful dogs are left unwanted. The numbers are huge. Getting a rescue animal is a no brainer.
Q: Have you ever worked with animals in a role?
Pam: Yes, lots. I worked with Holly, a darling three legged terrier, twice. Once in Rosemary and Thyme and again in the film Children of Men. I fell in love with a deerhound on Harry Potter, and a piglet during the Darling Buds of May.
Over to Elsie and Stan…
Q: What’s the best thing about being Pam’s pet?
Elsie: She throws the ball a lot a lot a lot - until her arm hurts.
Stan: She cheers when I run like the wind round and round the football field.
Q: Go on, let us into a secret about your owner!
Stan: She has names for all our toys, and they all start with “Mister”.
Elsie: There’s Mr Monkey, Mr Snakey, Mr Tenny Ball etc – it’s so embarrassing.