A charity providing care dogs to children with autism has been declared Scottish charity of the year by pet food company Burns Pet Nutrition.
Appaws for Autism is the only facility in Scotland to provide the opportunity for children to increase social interaction, confidence and a sense of safety through specially trained dogs who provide comfort as they sense a child’s anxiety or stress.
The crew at Appaws said they were “astounded and delighted” with the accolade.
The charity is one of two given a support package for their animal welfare work by the pet food company, the other being the National Animal Welfare Trust, one of the UK’s biggest animal welfare charities.
As part of the award, Burns will provide Appaws with full funding for one autism assistance dog and partial funding for a further 4, and will provide the dogs with pet food for the year. The two groups will also collaborate on fundraising opportunities through 2017.
“We are extremely proud to be working with all the team at Burns and we are looking forward to the next year immensely,” said Carol Chisholm, director of Appaws for Autism, “This award is very special to us all as it means we are doing what we set out to do for autism, our families and our dogs.”