Since 1926, Gloucestershire Animal Welfare Association & Cheltenham Animal Shelter have been helping stray and abandoned animals across Gloucestershire. Due to the amazing support of the public, we can continue to do what we do best! We receive no government or lottery funding so rely on the generosity of locals to keep us up and running! At Cheltenham Animal Shelter we take care of an estimated 800 animals a year and need to raise a minimum of £650,000 annually to cover the cost of vet bills, food, toys, kennels and more!

Our mission is ‘To provide shelter for homeless domestic animals whilst attempting to locate appropriate new homes. We also aim to educate members of the public in correct and appropriate animal husbandry through humane education programs’.

We have had many success stories at the shelter and always try to do our best by the animals we house here. The story of our gorgeous boy Polo, we would like to share with you so you get a feel for the fantastic work we do!  Polo, a 7 year old Portuguese Podengo came to our rescue in November 2017 as a sign over with another beautiful dog called Ella. Ella found her home but sadly Polo was with us until he was adopted in January 2019.

Polo is now called Monty, and his new owner has updated us saying he has been as good as gold since he arrived. He has been on several long walks in the forest (where he’s already met 4 dogs and been amazing with all of them). He’s played in the garden and is already beginning to recognise his new name! Polo had been here a long time, but we never gave up on him, we knew the perfect home was out there for him!

While Polo was with us, our amazing kennel team fed, walked, trained and provided him with mental stimulation while in the kennel! Further enrichment was provided to Polo as a long stay dog, with our ‘Open Paw’ kennels allowing Polo to be fed by the public – which helped improve Polo’s human socialization!

We all love the work we do from caring for the animals, to putting on events and being part of the local community! We work with local schools, care homes, the National Star Collage, community centers, people with learning difficulties and more!

If you’d like to find out more about what we do and how you can help please visit:


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