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Huggle Pets – Support for the Local Community

Hannah Dixon with their bunny Milly – used for animal therapy sessions

Within the past 2 weeks – only a stone’s throw from our Flooring Midlands site in Wolverhampton – there has been an incredible new business and charitable concept opened called ‘Huggle Pets’. After previously selling pet supplies online, this family business has expanded to a physical premise as a competitively priced pet, reptile and aquatics retailer.

In addition, there is a non-for-profit part of the organisation which runs activities and therapy sessions with animals; benefiting children with disabilities, mental health sufferers and people combating loneliness.

The daughter of this family business Hannah Dixon comes from a career in health care and education, with her intuition and passion allowing this programme to take off. It was when an autistic child came in to the shop and interacted with the animals, his mother commented on the extent to which his confidence and communication improved. This ignited an idea in Hannah and – after extensive research – she found more evidence around the benefits of animal therapy for children with SEN (Special Educational Needs).

These animal therapy sessions for children now run over a 6 week period with a professional therapist to ensure their effectiveness. This makes Huggle Pets a truly unique offering to the area of Wolverhampton and the sessions have touched many people’s lives – not just children. They also operate ‘Tea with a Twist’, which allows people to connect over the interaction with the pets. Furthermore, they also offer corporate team bonding sessions with innovative ‘bush tucker trial’ style activities.

Although some of the profits from the main retailer side of the business go towards funding ‘Huggle Pets in the community’, they mostly rely on corporate sponsors to fund their charitable activities. This is where RML have been happy to assist in making this programme thrive, by sponsoring their Sensory Activity Centre. This has allowed them to buy all the latest technology that allows sensory activity for children, with low lighting and colours that are proven to induce calm.

As well as this assistance, our team in Wolverhampton have kindly been on hand to install the signage onto their shop prior to their launch event. We pride ourselves on helping these local community causes and we continue to support Huggle Pet’s efforts.

If you think you would benefit from any of Huggle Pet’s programmes and activities or would just like to find out further information, please visit their website.