News and Events

Trustee Recruitment

Trustee Recruitment
St Francis Home for Animals is a comparatively small but very busy dog rehoming charity based near Newquay in Cornwall. We have a small team of staff and are heavily dependent on the support and goodwill from our fantastic volunteers and supporters to carry on the excellent work that we do. We are highly regarded by the local community and have a contract with Cornwall Council to take in strays.
We take in other dogs that are seeking new homes for various reasons and, when the dogs are ready, will pro-actively seek new, suitable homes for them. We also support a wide range of community activities and are always looking for new ways to develop education and fundraising initiatives.
As a charity a Board of Trustees leads us and we want to reinforce our existing board in order to progress the charity, in terms of the efficiency of our operations, development for the future, strategic planning and ensuring our financial security.
We are looking for volunteers who may be interested in becoming part of the St Francis Team as a Trustee. With extensive plans for the future of St Francis, we need a strong Board equipped to lead the Charity forward to an even higher standard
Your commitment to St Francis would simply be your time and your experience. This entails attendance at Board meetings held approximately every two months (usually in an evening), and some assistance in planning and implementing new policies especially in the individual’s own area of expertise. Our current Chairman, Jeremy Varcoe, comments that working to give a new life to unhappy dogs is a worthwhile and rewarding means of giving something back to society..
Our essential criteria would be an interest in animal welfare, particularly dogs, and ideally a knowledge and/or understanding of the challenges that this can bring in order to support our very competent team on the ground. If you happen already to be a supporter, in whatever capacity, of St Francis, you will already be well aware of what we do. We are seeking pro-active, positive minded people who will take responsibility for ownership and completion of tasks in their own time to assist our development.
As a Board of Trustees we are particularly looking for people who have expertise in any of the following areas to join us;
• Fundraising
• Legal expertise
• Strategy Development
• Construction or architecture
• Accountancy
If you feel that you have skills, or indeed other skills not mentioned, that may be of benefit to St Francis Home for Animals, please submit a CV and a covering letter detailing a little about yourself and how you could help us. Closing date for expressions of interest in joining our team would need to be received by Saturday 2nd December.
Please send to Jeremy Varcoe, CMG (Chairman of Trustees), St Francis Home for Animals, Trevelgue Road, Porth, Newquay. TR8 4AT, or by email to

Fireworks Frights!

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Fireworks Frights! How to Keep Your Dog Calm on November 5th


We know how scary bonfire night can be for hounds with plenty of explosions taking place all over Cornwall in the few weeks surrounding November 5th; but what can you do to keep your dog calm?




Keep the radio or TV on for your dog to draw their attention away from the fireworks taking place. Make sure you shut all the doors and windows and draw the curtains too to help limit flashes of light and reduce noise levels. We recently wrote an article on the benefits of classical music for dogs.


Make Their Routine a Little Earlier


One way to ensure that they’re more relaxed when fireworks are taking place, is to walk them before dark and feed them earlier. The last thing you want is a stray firework scaring your hound out on a walk, or for them to be too anxious to eat amid the noise later on.


Don’t Assume


If your dog is particularly nervous, don’t take any chances. Stressed dogs can become escape artists, so keep their leads on when they go into the back garden, and make sure they have a collar with an ID on, just in case.


Keep Your Cool


Dogs react best when you act normal, if you show them there’s nothing to be scared of, they’re much less likely to panic. Keep cheerful and happy, and play with your dog’s toys and reward them with treats to keep their interest.


Use Pheromones


Try a pheromone diffuser to keep your pooch chilled – they give off relaxing chemicals into a room and can help to keep your dog calm until the fireworks have passed. You may want to discuss this option with your local vet.


Make a Safe Haven


Dogs like to hide to feel safe, so if you can make a quiet area for them where they can feel in control, they’ll be able to retreat and cope better. Whether it’s a little den under the dining room table, or a room upstairs that’s quiet, they’ll appreciate the space. Additionally, place some of your unwashed jumpers in the den for him so he can smell you for comfort.


If you’d like to rehome a rescue pup, why not take a look at our current available dogs which are waiting for their forever homes! To see them just click, here.

Classical music vs Firework night

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Bonfire night and Firework night is fast approaching!

Why Music Helps Our hounds – Our Amazon Wish List


At St Francis Home for Animals we take good care of our dogs, but as you can imagine, they’re not all suited to rescue centre life. That’s why we’ve created our Amazon wish list full of things that will help our hounds have a happier life while they wait for their forever home.


One thing we’ve asked for is CD players and classical music for dogs – why you might ask?


Well, there’s plenty of evidence in recent studies that has suggested that dogs relax considerably with classical music playing. Sometimes if the dogs get stressed while they’re with us it’s helpful for us to be able to put on a piece of music to help calm them…


The Scottish SPCA has found that the calming effects that classical music has on dogs is quite considerable; dogs’ stress levels decreased significantly – heart rates, saliva samples and behaviour observations were all used for the study and monitored how the dogs’ wellbeing increased.


Hounds seemed to spend less time barking and standing when they were being lulled by classical pieces, and it particularly helped the male dogs.


SPCA’s education and research manager Gilly Mendes Ferreira commented: ‘The initial findings are very encouraging and show that classical music does have a positive impact on the dogs’ welfare. The average length of stay for a dog in our care can range from one to three weeks for smaller dogs and pedigrees, while larger breeds can remain with us up to six months and some breeds over a year.


‘We want to make each dog’s time with us as comfortable as possible and this research is at the very forefront of animal welfare.’

If you’d like to give our dogs at St Francis the gift of classical music to help increase their wellbeing, you can order it for us from our Amazon wish list, here.


Alternatively, if you’ve got a pup that seems to be a little stressed, why not try putting on some classical at home and see if you notice a difference in his attitude. Let us know if it works on our Facebook page!

Written by Ashe Fox


Cornish Pirates

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A massive thank you to the Cornish Pirates for allowing us to collect at their recent game. We raised over £400 which is a huge help!
I would also like to say thank you to everyone that donated and of course thank you to our helpers.