Two pals from Sorn are walking 50 miles throughout the month of October to raise funds for a leading animal welfare charity which holds a special place in their hearts.

Keri Shaw and Paula-Jane Gilfoyle will be stretching their legs for Scottish SPCA in a bid to educate people on the importance of wildlife as well as the catastrophic impact littering can have on animals’ wellbeing.

The women, who own a whopping 18 pets between them, have already surpassed their initial target of £150 but are hoping to drive donations up as the weeks go on.

Keri, 32, whose seven dogs “are taking it in turns to help their mammy do the challenge”, explained: “I thought the challenge would give me the incentive to go out and raise money for the SPCA as they don’t get any lottery funding or funding from the government.

Cumnock Chronicle: Keri.Keri.

“Some of my dogs have been taken in from rescue centres. We have four rottweilers, my husband says it’s like rottweiler rescue on the farm where we live.

“Usually people give us dogs who need rehoming. We’ve got smaller dogs, too, so our kids can get more involved with them. Our kid’s teacher says it’s not a surprise anymore when we get a new dog.”

She continued: “We’ve walked 11 miles already and being out with Paula gives me encouragement. We usually walk down into Catrine then back up to my house. My kids go to school in Ayr so I sometimes walk round there, too.

“I’m quite confident we’ll finish the challenge by October 31 although round here it’s all hills, whereas in Ayr it’s nice in flat, so I’ve been struggling with shin splints.

“We wear our SPCA t-shirts on the walks and one of my dogs wears a bandana with the logo on it, too, so it’s good advertising. I think we’re going to have a good amount of money for the charity at the end of it.”

Paula-Jane, 36, added: “The charity is special to me as they educate children from an early age in school on the importance of our wildlife and how to look after their environment and what damage can be done to animals as a result of littering.”

And when they reach their walking goal, how will the ladies be celebrating?

“We will likely celebrate with a nice meal in the local Sorn Inn”, said Paula.

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