A long-term resident at a wildlife sanctuary has finally found a home.

Humbug, an Akita-cross, was born at Bleakholt Animal Sanctuary in Edenfield in 2014, and he and his siblings were initially rehomed. 

However, Humbug was returned as a youngster due to being wary of strangers.

Bury Times: Happy HumbugHappy Humbug (Image: Bleakholt)

He then struggled to find another home due to being, in sanctuary manager Karen Weed’s words, “a complex little soul”, especially because of his extended kennel life.

It was later discovered that Humbug had insecurities and phobias, and needed training, as well as a patient owner. 

Bury Times: HumbugHumbug (Image: Bleakholt)

Humbug waited and waited for a potential owner to come along, and in that time, became a firm favourite with staff at the Edenfield sanctuary.

He also took a shine to some of the volunteer dog walkers who, once he got to know them, he showered with cuddles and smooches.

Humbug was taken home at weekends by a foster carer where he went on long walks and got used to being in a home, which helped to greatly improve his confidence and behaviour. 

But the staff at Bleakholt desperately wanted him to leave his heated kennel and find a heated forever home.

Bury Times: HumbugHumbug (Image: Bleakholt)

Finally, after nine years at the sanctuary, whose ambassador is TV and radio personality, Gemma Atkinson, from Bury, he has done just that, by finding a new owner in Ken Marsh.

Ken has had dogs from Bleakholt before and, after losing his beloved pet, Herbie, on December 22, he and his partner, Sandra Rothwell, decided it was time for another.

Ken, who lives in Barnoldswick, said: “Humbug is my seventh dog from Bleakholt.

“I went to get Herbie five-and-a-half years ago and asked for the dog that had been there longest.

“When Herbie died, I went to Bleakholt and asked again for the one who had been there the longest and also looked at a few others.

“We went home and talked about it and decided on Humbug. It’s the longest I have ever been without a dog since I was 21-years-old, so it was good to pick up Humbug.

“It’s so far so good. He loves his squeaky toys, and he is a slow walker – I have a 25 minute walk to the canal which takes me 45 minutes with Humbug.

“He has two beds – one downstairs and one upstairs – and he has settled in well. It’s a pleasure to have him.”