Social media stars raise over £100k for vet charity in six weeks
A devoted owner and volunteer fundraiser and his loyal four-legged buddies, Max, Paddy, and Harry, all Spaniels, have broken a record for the largest sum raised for vet charity PDSA – raising £100,000 in less than six weeks.
Kerry Irving, the proud owner of the Keswick canines-turned-social media stars, wanted to raise cash for the vet charity to mark Max’s 13th birthday last month.
Kerry set up a Facebook page four years ago for his dog Max who has helped him deal with severe depression following a car accident which left him in chronic pain on a daily basis. Paddy and Harry have since joined the pack and together, the four of them walk the Lake District – sharing their adventures daily on their Facebook page, Max Out in the Lakes.
In 2018, Max and Paddy were honoured with a PDSA Commendation for providing support, comfort, and joy to thousands of people.
In July, Kerry and his 144,000 Facebook members raised£46,600 to back Kerry on his mission to climb Ben Nevis, the UK’s highest mountain.
A online raffle was also created by Kerry that sold over 44,000 tickets and Kerry recently took the plunge in a jetty jump that was streamed live on Facebook.
Together, Kerry’s efforts have seen him raise a staggering £100,000 for PDSA, which will enable PDSA’s vet teams to provide life-saving treatment poorly pets across the UK.
Kerry said: “I’m so very proud of what we’ve managed to achieve and would like to thank each and every person who has donated and supported us in our journey raising vital funds for PDSA.
“I’m fortunate that we can afford to look after my miracle dog Max should anything go wrong but there are thousands of miracle pets out there helping their owners daily that aren’t in the same position, and that’s why I’ve been working hard to fundraise for PDSA. They are a fantastic charity who believe no pets should suffer because of financial hardship and they are there for pets in need of life-saving care.
“Hiking up Ben Nevis is a challenge that, until recently, I’d have considered impossible. And if it wasn’t for Max, I wouldn’t be here at all. My dogs are my constant companions and I don’t know where I’d be without them, and that’s why I’m raising funds for PDSA who need our help now more than ever.”
PDSA Vet Hermione Hillen, who joined Kerry and the boys on their jetty jump, said: “Kerry and his boys are an inspiration to us all and we’re extremely grateful for their incredible, ongoing support. The amount they have raised is truly astonishing and their support is needed now more than ever before.
“Our veterinary care is a lifeline to so many owners across the UK and costs £60 million a year to run. But due to the pandemic, we’re losing around £3 million a month in income. We don’t believe pets should suffer because of financial hardship and the support from Kerry will help us to continue our vital work.”