Berkshire’s premier guinea pig rescue has been chosen as a finalist for 'Animal Charity of the Year' at a prestigious animal awards ceremony after being put forward by several members of the community.

Sian Dutson, 38, from Priestwood in Bracknell first started the rescue from her back garden when a friend expressed a desire to surrender their guinea pig but was unaware where to take the animal.

Through word of mouth, circumstance and commendations from a variety of national platforms such as the RSPCA, Sians Guinea Pig Rescue has grown into what is one of the biggest self-funded animal rescue in the region.

Bracknell News:

The mother-of-six was notified that she had been named one of around eight finalists across the UK to be considered for doing extraordinary things for animals.

Sian’s Guinea Pig Rescue is a self-funded rescue for all ages and breeds that aims to give the animals a better chance at life. At capacity, she has had over 120 guinea pigs in her rescue hoping to be homed.

Sian said: “I was so surprised when I found out I was a finalist. I didn’t even realise there was such an award. Apparently there were multiple people who nominated us for the Animal Charity of the Year catagory at the Animal Star Awards but normally it’s charities for cats and dogs.

Bracknell News:

“It started out really small, but then I set up a Facebook page and people were constantly contacting me about both surrendering their animals and also wanting to adopt.

“We get people coming from five hours away to visit us. It’s unbelievable when you think about it.

“If I’ve got space and can help someone, I’d rather they bring them here than get to the point where they think they need to dump them.”

From young couples to elderly residents, Sian explains that she has had hundreds of people choose to adopt from the rescue instead of visiting pet shops.

Alongside the rescue, which she runs from her garden in Priestwood, Sian also offers boarding services for guinea pigs and rabbits when their owners are going on holiday.

This income is used to buy food and hay to provide everyday care for animals waiting to be adopted at the rescue.

The charity has recently received a donation of a bigger shed where the family will be able to care for more guinea pigs in a safe environment.

Sians Guinea Pig Rescue is currently one of the 25 permanent rescues featured in the UK’s guinea pig magazine and has also been recommended by the RSPCA.