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Our week at Crosskennan!

A quick recap of the previous week for our readers on what's been happening at a very busy Crosskennan Lane Animal Sanctuary!

Last Friday at the Sanctuary saw some of our horse and pony residents enjoy a very delightful pamper afternoon! Big thanks to Keeley for giving our friends a grooming. Check out those mighty happy ponies below: Lacey, Darcey, Penny, Chica, Oscar and Susie!

Now that our Big CLAS online pet show is LIVE, it's time to pick your categories to enter and help us raise lots of money to go towards keeping our animals safe, warm, and healthy.

It's £2 per entry with no limit on how many times you enter!

Don't have a pet? No problem we even have a kids 'design your pet' class and an adults wildlife photo class!

Not a professional photographer? No problem! Photos don't have to be amazing, it's all about the pet and there is a class for them all. With 18 classes to choose from, check out some of these below and how you can enter: SENIORS Dogs

Open to all senior dogs. We know all dogs age at different rates so we only ask for them to be over 6. This class has been sponsored in memory of Barney the dog. Equine Open to all senior horses, ponies and donkeys aged 15 and above. This class has been sponsored by Online Dressage International All pets Open to all senior pets. As species are so different there is no age limit. This class has been sponsored by the Boyd Family. Rescues Male dog, female dog, cat, horse, and any pet! Show off your beloved rescues in a single image or collage that shows and tells us why your rescue is the best. Text is allowed but must be no more than 1 small paragraph OR attached to the image directly (1 pet per entry). The rescue classes have been sponsored by Jennifer King, in memory of Lucky the Rescue Dog, in memory of Sooty the Cat, by Westfield Equine Reiki and by Scibble Studio NI The other classes will be advertised soon! Check out our facebook for daily updates!

You can enter any of our classes by clicking the button below

*Instructions for submission along with our T&C's are also available on our website* Some of our current entries below for this years Big CLAS Online Pet Show!

Songs for Ronnie

Looking forward to this event next Saturday - a full day remembering a lovely man and musician Ronnie Purvis, raising money for the sanctuary and listening to some great music!

Some of you may remember Ronnie from his day playing music from inside our horse box during an open day, entertaining us all.

We are honoured his friends continue to include us when they are honouring his memory

Minstrel, the wee rascal!

This boy has had many ups and downs the past couple of years with the last few months being continuous for him with weight loss that the vets can’t find a cause for. He has a heart condition too but it’s managed with his meds - the weight loss is still being monitored. With all this in mind, he has cleverly worked out a way to avoid his medication even when closed in the crate with it - just reach out and eat the other cats food instead! As you can see he’s eating well, and we assure you he eats his own food with his medication mixed in too. But hey, grass is always greener! You can help us keep minstrel fed and medicated every month - just text CLAS Paws to 70660 to pledge £3 a month! Or make a donation via Minstrel as you can see likes the meaty wet foods - so he’d appreciate them too! Any with gastrointestinal benefits are good for him too. And thank you to Andrew who volunteers on a Monday for the food donation!

The Equine Update This week, we had a visit from the dentist - another fourteen horses, ponies and donkeys seen. All ages, sizes and histories...

Teeth can tell you a lot about the equine, the main thing being age (even at a rough guess).

What can you tell from these teeth? Can you guess who they belong to? Can you guess their age?

Yesterdays bill will be just under £900 for the 14. Thankfully for some it’s an annual expense - for a few though they are seen every 3 months and some every 6.

Dental checks are important for all equines, not just for those being ridden and who are using a bit.

Routine dental care helps improve horses health and comfort, helps them maintain weight and condition, helps with feed efficiency, helps reduce or eliminate pain related behaviours, and in general can improve a horses performance and overall well-being.

If you can help with the costs for this 14 it will really be appreciated at a time when costs are just rising daily.

Our Shetlands, Tansy & Tamma If you have experience with shetlands then you know exactly what we mean when we introduce the twin terrorists Tansy and Tamma.

The girls had a grand old time on Monday afternoon putting Lydia, Laurel and Susie through their paces in the paddock. People passing the sanctuary and spotting the madness in the field would probably question why we would turn them all out in a group when the little sh*tlands are known to do just this.

Well if you know your shetlands then you know that they are crafty - and sneaky, very clever and often quite good at finding weaknesses in fences. That is of course just what happened when the girls found a damaged fence pole and helpfully made it a shetland size gate. You can just spot Gabriel in the top corner along with the other shetlands keeping an eye on the action while Tansy and Tamma cause chaos. So in conclusion... chaos comes in tiny packages and if anyone wants to help with the costs those tiny packages rack up then we would be very grateful!

Or text CLAS to 70660 to make a regular donation of £3 a month.

Or if you are handy and want to help out putting things right again, could you assist by becoming a maintenance volunteer! Email All support is appreciated!

"I'm looking for something bombproof."

Just to say - while we would consider some of our equines bombproof (in their own ways) we have to admit we haven’t tested them in either the 1815 or the 2022 method. Many of our horses have had the sh*tland test though - and passed with flying colours (for the most part). Some have even been exposed to the old welsh gelding who thinks he’s a stallion. Many have also had full chicken, cat and dog training (with mixed results).

Autism NI Summer Workshop - Equine Fun

We had Autism NI group back for their second week of their Equine Course.

Yesterday we set up a little obstacle course to work on handling.

Tinny and Lucy very helpfully took part - with Lady overseeing.

The girls worked on safely approaching, and the using of slight pressure/release and voice commands to work the ponies through the course. Starting with a volunteer assisting on another lead rope and ending the session working independently around the course.

Weaving around staggered poles, then over two ground poles, around straight cones and finishing up standing in a circle (hoop) each - with the ponies front two feet inside the circle and the girls feet inside the other.

We also did a short practice of haltering which will play into next weeks lesson on tying up safely, grooming and general horse health and checks.

Home from home... We still have 34 cats and kittens seeking homes at present. Aged 8 weeks to 12 years there is a cat or kitten for everyone.

This week we wanted to remind our readers of the wonderful feline friends we had:

URGENT Home needed - stray male

This beautiful boy is just a kitten but already been through so much. Lifted off a very busy road he’s skin and bone. He’s been checked for microchip and been advertised incase there is someone missing him but no luck.

He’s being neutered this week but the current carer isn’t allowed any pets and need to find him a new home.

He’s a little nervous but friendly, we’ve seen videos of him getting petted and having a little attention. He arches his back up in enjoyment of the attention. He really wants a home and attention.

He will be a little bit of a project for someone - although he will get his vet check when being neutered he still needs to gain a good bit of weight and he is finding all house related things strange but he’s learning.

Could you give him a chance? Give him a home, with love and attention?

Please email if you can offer him a home.

There is a deadline on his rehoming due to the housing situation. So please share far and wide - we need to get this boy sorted asap.

Bambam & Ollie Seeking a home together, these 9 week old brothers are on the hunt for their forever home.

Do you like watching tv and giving head scratches? Our beautiful black tiger striped Princess could be the girl for you. Our 9 week old sibling duo are looking for a new home together. Stevie is just as playful but a bit more timid than his sister and therefore would prefer an adult household. Franny (Francine)

Our new mum (to Stevie & Princess), Franny is very affectionate but prefers to sit beside you rather than on your knee. She purrs like a motorbike and is estimated to be around 2-3 years old. She is a very confident lady and will have no problem adapting to new environments.

Matilda & Clemantine Matilda and Clementine are sisters in search of a home of their own, either as a single companion to another cat or as a pair. They are both very friendly and enjoy attention from people.

Clementine is the tortie and Matilda is the tabby. The girls were rescued with their mum and their brother after their other brother was sadly knocked down on the road. They had been straying and mum was pregnant again even though the kittens were still feeding off her.

They are weaned and have had all their jabs, checks and have no just been spayed too. So all they need is a home.

Can that home be with you?

Henry, Heidi, Haribo & Harper Just over 9 weeks old and having had their 1st vaccines and all clear from the vet, our four tabby siblings are all ready to find new homes.

Henry and Heidi are super friendly, confident wee kittens who love human attention and love playing with the children in their foster home. Although we'd prefer these 2 to go together we do think they would be ok separate as long as they have company.

Haribo and Harper are a little more nervous still, although happy to be worked with. At present they are still very nervous of children so they are looking for a home with adults or children over 12 years. This pair find great comfort in each other and so are only looking for a home where they can go as a pair.

Martha Our 12 year old grey tabby Martha is looking out for a home of her own where she can live out the rest of her days with some well deserved peace and pampering. Living as a stray for 10+ years, I think it's about time Martha experienced the sweet life.

Martha moved into foster and had all her checks and a little TLC. Sadly she tested positive for FIV. FIV is not a death sentence but it does limit her options moving on. She currently lives all her days in one room of her fosters house, and she is quite content although would like to explore a little more. FIV cats can enjoy a happy life and can make wonderful companions. To prevent the disease from spreading, the RSPCA recommends FIV cats must be the only cat in the household, so if you'd like to have a one-cat home, an FIV cat might suit you. Adopting an FIV-positive cat can be really rewarding. Although nobody can predict the future, many FIV cats can potentially live long, healthy and full lives, just like a non-infected cat. They also have all the usual needs of any cat, such as a nutritious diet, mental stimulation and plenty of love! Truffle, Tortellini & Tofu (The trio of trouble!) Ready for release from 30th July - RESERVE NOW! At 4 weeks old, these siblings were sadly orphaned when their mother was hit by a car. After a kind stranger brought them to CLAS, they have blossomed into crazy cuddle hungry kitties! They love nothing more than to curl up beside foster mum under a blanket. Tortellini is the most confident.

Truffle is the smallest and can be shy

Tofu is female and a wee bit of a scaredy cat. Quite cautious and watchful. She will sometimes hide from the other cats and sometimes spook at little things.

They are currently learning to use the litter tray, and to play nicely with each other. They have been exposed to adult cats and so would be fine in a home with other cats. They have not been introduced to dogs or children.

Can you offer them a home? Either as a single companion to another cat or even as the trio themselves? What's better than two troublemakers? Three of course! Rocky, Rumour and Ripley

This gorgeous trio is Rocky, Ripley and Rumour. Rocky the female is black with a little white on her tummy. Ripley is a beautiful brown-black and Rumour is the tabby with the most beautiful markings.

They have been in foster for a few weeks after being rescued alongside their mum, Reina (also advertised on the website). The kittens are developing their personalities at the moment, mostly interested in exploring and food. If they grow up like their mum they will be very special cats.

Reina herself has been described as very Zen and from the moment of her rescue she has taken to being groomed, having attention and in general living the house cat pet life like she was born into it. Quite different to her origin - being dumped at a derelict house heavily pregnant.

The kittens may grow up like mum, or they may be the complete opposite - at the present time they still haven't developed any strong personality traits. They have also had either no or very little exposure to children and dogs.

It's our preference that they find homes either in pairs or into a home with another cat present; potentially being rehomed alongside mum who is little more than a kitten herself.

All three kittens and their mum deserve someone to love them - could that be you?

Reina This gorgeous girl is Reina, a very chilled young mum who is looking forward to finding a home of her own very soon. Reina is only a kitten herself but already she's been a mum to 3 wonderful little kittens, Rocky, Rumour and Ripley

She may be happy being rehomed with other cats, or even with one of her kittens. She won't demand much, but would be very happy to accept the attention when it's given.

Wilbert At 16 weeks, this wee man is looking for his forever home. Wilbert was born to Betsy, another cat in our care who is currently due to give birth any day. Wilbert has had a rough start to life, the latest being witnessing one of his siblings being killed on the road.

He is learning to trust people in their foster home and are coming along well and is now ready to find a home of his very own!

He does enjoy a bit of attention and would love someone who can give him lots and lots!

We have a rehoming fee of £70 for cats. All our cats are neutered and if not neutered at the time of rehoming, will be required to be neutered as soon as permitted by a vet. All adoptions will only take place following meeting the cat at the sanctuary and a home check.

Unfortunately due to the large number of applications we can receive per cat we do have to state that we may not be able to contact every unsuccessful home. Adoptive homes will only be considered in NORTHERN IRELAND. We are sorry we cannot accommodate further afield but this ensures we can carry out effective home checks and you have a chance to meet the cats before adoption.

Dog Rehoming Koba Our lovely 6 year old staffie, Koba has been on our list for over a month now. Unfortunately due to his owners health, he isn't getting the same attention he is used to and they've made the difficult decision to rehome him to a family who can give him the attention he deserves. Koba is lovely, friendly dog. Good with children and okay with other dogs although introductions will be required for any children or dogs in the home. He is a happy boy who enjoys attention but can be left out in the dog run for periods of time. Could you be the love and affection Koba desperately needs? Koji With no interest whatsoever in the past month and a half, our beautiful 6 year old Bullmastif x Japanese Akita, Koji needs to find a home as unfortunately his current family are unable to provide the exercise and attention he deserves. Given his breeding he is a large strong dog and ideally we would be looking for a home with a good sized secure garden. He is an active dog but also loves lying about on the sofa and getting lots of cuddles.

He's a lovely friendly dog, good with children - and has experience of children aged 4 and above in the home. He is good with dogs both in the home and out on walks, he doesn't have much experience off lead with other dogs. Meetings and careful introductions will be required for any children or dogs in the existing home.

He has been in his current home since he was 8 weeks old and this is a sad rehoming for them and one they've been working to prevent for the past two years. He is looking for a home that can give him all the love and attention he is used to.

Check out our poll from the week on your best tips for keeping your pet cool in the hot weather!

We appreciate your support! Thank you so much to our incredibly kind supporters for donating this week. The cats and dogs are very grateful for their bedding, food and treats!

A massive thank you to Francis and her friends who came up on Tuesday and did a lot of landscaping in our front garden area, trimming back trees/hedges and shrubs that had become overgrown to the point they were choking other plants. The chickens were overjoyed with all the extra space - and we know the dogs and ponies will be too when they get a run about!

Margaret and Natasha - two of our oldest birds kept a good eye on the gardeners.

If you have a group who would like to lend a hand for a few hours we would appreciate it. Get in touch to arrange! Email

Little Ozzie got some awesome agility equipment donated and he’s been out practicing. This was his first session the other afternoon.

He’s a very clever little dog and enjoying games and training.

Even Stan the horse had a go at a couple of the little jumps

Have you ever seen a happier wee dog?

We're on the lookout - can you help?

Do you have any experience with the media or the press? We are looking for a volunteer to assist with press and publicity.

This may be as simple as contacting papers, magazines, editorials, etc. and trying to get some coverage - especially for some of our rehoming cases and emergency appeals. In many cases we have the information written up ready to go - we just can't get the time to get it out.

We are also on the lookout for some people to join us within our fundraising team. Can you help out?

Please email if you can help out.

Could you join us as a Maintenance Volunteer?

With over 150 animals on site annually on average, the sanctuary gets a lot of wear and tear.

This is why we need maintenance volunteers who are willing to come in and undertake DIY and associated tasks, such as sweeping the yard, strimming weeds, power washing, and cleaning the windows, doing runs to the dump etc.

Make a real difference to the lives of the animals in our care and enhance the experience for volunteers and visitors! For those who have skills and experience it is a great opportunity for us to open up some skill sharing!

This role will suit people who… enjoy variety, enjoy getting their hands dirty, like meeting people, have a friendly and helpful nature and like helping others and be part of a team.

Email if you can help!


We really appreciate your support - and there are so many ways you can help us help animals.

We can accept Food donations, toys (no stuffed toys or tennis balls please), bedding (blankets, towels, and sheets are welcome!), and we can recycle old lego, mobile phones and used stamps!


Don't forget our upcoming Crosskennan Charity Dinner Dance this November to celebrate 25 years of saving lives. Celebrating the people who have helped and the animals they have saved!



Help us to help them!

Please, CLICK here to Make a Donation (PAYPAL)!

Make a one off donation on our website CLICK HERE!

Or you can send a donation via bank transfer to

Sort Code: 950202

Account Number: 31184288



If you want to get stuff delivered to us you post it directly to: Crosskennan Lane Animal Sanctuary, 26 Crosskennan Lane, Ballynoe, Antrim, BT41 2QY

Or send us an email to to arrange a drop-off of donations!

Did you know you can send grocery deliveries to us too? Just let us know in advance, and you can do a ASDA, Tesco's, Sainsbury's Online delivery and get it dropped off at the sanctuary. We can make use of so much from your local supermarket, from fresh fruit and veg, to frozen peas and sweetcorn, fresh chicken, ham, liver, washing up powder/tablets, dish soap, bleach, disinfectant, toilet rolls, dog food, cat food, birdseed... The list could go on forever!

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