DOGS Trust Salisbury offer a free service to look after dogs if the worst should happen to owners.

The Canine Care Card initiative promises that dogs who are left to fend for themselves are taken in and cared for as normal by a member of the Dogs Trust team, until a second forever home can be found.

Members of the scheme will own a wallet-sized card which notifies people of the wishes for their dog.

Supporter relations officer at Dogs Trust Salisbury, Lucy Hooper said: "Many dog owners worry what might happen to their dog if they were to pass away first, leaving their beloved four-legged friend without an owner.

"However, the Canine Care Card scheme offers reassurance to dog owners, and also helps to ease the minds of friends and family during what is already a distressing time."

12-year-old Lucy is now the oldest dog resident under the scheme, with Ms Hooper assuring she "has slowly started to come out of her shell and enjoys spending time with canine carer, Claire."

"We are looking for a quiet home with no other pets and with a family who’ll give her plenty of time to settle in and allow her true character to shine through once she knows you.

"We know we can’t fill the space left by her beloved owner, only a new caring family can do that, but we hope it won’t be long before a new owner comes forward and gives her the love she deserves very soon.”

To find out more information about the scheme and how to sign up, ring Lucy Hooper on 0330 303 0292.