PDSA is the UK's leading veterinary charity, offering free services to the sick and injured pets of people in need.In addition to its veterinary services, the charity also offers a programme of education and workshops aimed at promoting responsible pet ownership.

Thanks to a £625,000 funding boost from players of People's Postcode Lottery, PDSA's education program reached more than 60,000 children in the last 12 months. Five PDSA Community Vet Nurses visited over 400 schools throughout 2014, delivering more than 1,000 workshops.

Alongside these visits, the charity's Pet Check vehicles provided a thorough health and well being assessment of local dogs' five welfare needs – environment, behaviour, diet, companionship and health. During the Pet Check tours, PDSA provided around 4,500 free Pet Checks for dogs, with a further 1,294 general pet advice consults.

"In 2014 we adopted a new 'intensive care' approach," explained Nicola Martin, Head of Pet Health and Welfare at PDSA. "Thanks to the funding from players of People's Postcode Lottery, our team of community vet nurses were able to target ten pet welfare 'hotspots', delivering three weeks of fun, interactive sessions at local schools, followed by a week-long visit from one of our Pet Check vehicles. Our local pet hospitals also held community open days, and our Pet Check vehicles returned six months later to see how owners were getting on."

On their education programmes, Nicola continued."Children are the pet owners of the future;by helping them to better understand animals' needs we can improve the lives of generations of pets to come.

"We know that owners love their pets, and by working with owners to share our expert advice,we are able to help turn their affection into positive action that improves the lives of their pets."

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