Updated: Friday, 17th August 2018 @ 3:48pm

Dog who helps Manchester cerebral palsy sufferer with cleaning targets Crufts victory

Dog who helps Manchester cerebral palsy sufferer with cleaning targets Crufts victory

| By Jack Miller

A Manchester dog lover and her remarkable pooch are hoping for a final spot in the Kennel Club’s Eukanuba Friends for Life competition at Crufts 2015 after receiving a prestigious nomination.

Eton, a three-year-old Labrador cross Golden Retriever, has been nominated for the gong by the Canine Partners charity who handed the specially trained mutt to Manchester’s Vicky Shackleton in February 2013.

The Kennel Club’s Eukanuba Friends for Life competition celebrates heart-warming stories of friendship in adversity, where dogs have truly earned the title of man’s best friend, through bravery, support or companionship.

And 28-year-old owner Vicky, who was born with cerebral palsy, admitted that without Eton her story would be a very different one. 

“It was love at first sight when we met and I knew then he was the perfect match for me,” she said. “We work as a team and he has made struggling with daily tasks a thing of the past.

“Now people always stop me in the streets or when I am out shopping to talk about Eton. He always turns heads because he is so clever!

“People are interested to know what it is he actually does for me and they are always amazed when I tell them what he can do.

“Eton has made such a huge impact on my life and he means more to me than words can say.

“Without him I think I would be stuck in my house most of the time but now he has given me confidence and so much more independence.

“I would not change him for the world, he really has made my life complete.”

Eton is trained to assist Vicky in all aspects of her life, helping with household tasks such as washing clothes and cleaning, as well as giving her the independence to be able to leave the house with his supervision.

And the pair will be hoping for a trip out for the Kennel Club’s Eukanuba Friends for Life showpiece on March 8 when Chris Amoo, dog lover and 70s pop sensation with the band The Real Thing, hands the trophy to the winner.

Caroline Kisko, Kennel Club spokesperson, said: “People have sent us such moving and inspirational stories that truly demonstrate how important dogs are to our lives and what a difference they make to us, both in our best times and when things are tough.

“Vicky and Eton are thoroughly deserving of this nomination and the Kennel Club wishes them luck in the Friends for Life competition.

“Of course, every dog that has been entered is a Friend for Life in the eyes of their owner and help to remind us what it is that makes the relationship between dog and man so very special.

“Each and every one of the finalists has helped to change and save live in their own unique and special way.”