Community support

Funding level: Up to £1,000


April Lodge Guinea Pig Rescue was set up in 2004 and is based in Eastry, near Sandwich, Kent. Since then, we have rescued and found caring new homes for over 1700 unwanted guinea pigs.

Most guinea pigs come to us un-handled, scared, often underweight and usually with problems such as lice or fungal skin problems or wounds. All new arrivals are housed in a quarantine part of the shelter where we assess them, treat any health problems, handle them so they become used to people, adjust their diet and endeavour to turn them into healthier, happier, well adjusted guinea pigs ready for new homes.

However, the wooden hutches used in the quarantine block are 12 years old and as they are cleaned and disinfected 3 times a week and have housed literally hundreds of guinea pigs since the start of the charity these hutches are worn out and in many cases, damaged, after use for over a decade and repeated repairs.

This project will help us purchase new, safer, stronger and better designed hutches for the arrivals of the future. Changes to the design would include dividing panels within the hutch for paired guinea pigs which need to stay together but so we can assess fluid intake of each, monitor individual faeces or provide controlled diets. Such hutches will also enable us to match up single guinea pigs, given that they are only ever re-homed in pairs.

April Lodge Guinea Pig Rescue is one of a handful of registered charities in the UK which specialises in rescuing and re-homing guinea pigs. The charity also offers cheap welfare checks for all guinea pigs, whether adopted from us or not, and people travel from all over East Kent to bring their guinea pigs for assessment and advice. We are well known in the local community and hold numerous fundraising events through the year as well as an annual Open Day. These are very well attended, not just by locals but by visitors from as far afield as London, Surrey and Sussex.

The shelter is staffed purely by volunteers and wherever possible, we also offer volunteering opportunities for students, Duke of Edinburgh participants and occasionally those with learning or physical disabilities.

April Lodge Guinea Pig Rescue

Location: Eastry

Guinea pigs are such a undervalued animal & April Lodge are one of only a few registered rescues in the UK but in my eyes they are one of the best. Their care of the animals is second to none and they make sure that all the guinea pigs are loved and cared for, they are such a worthwhile cause.
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