Behind the Scenes at Battersea’s London Centre

Vitabiotics | Published: 17/05/2022

Behind the Scenes at Battersea’s London Centre

Vitabiotics is dedicated to the health and wellbeing of all dogs, regardless of breed, size and background. That’s why we’re proud to be continuing our support for Battersea - one of the most established and well-love rescue organisations in the UK. The staff at Battersea have been finding loving new homes for beloved pets for over 160 years and are dedicated to caring for every dog (and every cat too, but we’re sure they’ll forgive us for not talking about them!)

Dog being stoked by Battersea staff.
Dog being stoked by Battersea staff.

A lot of love and care goes into doing what’s best for dogs and cats in need, so from 2022, Vitabiotics will be donating 35p plus VAT of every pack of SuperDog to help Battersea fund their vital work. This includes supporting all the dogs and cats who make their way through the three Battersea centres, and the thousands of animals seen by the rescue organisations Battersea staff work with and share their expertise with all over the world.

Battersea’s expert staff take the time to get to know each dog, understand their individual needs, likes and dislikes, and get a sense of how they feel about other animals and people, and build an individualised care plan to support each dog in preparation for their new home.

Dog viven a treat by Battersea staff.
Dog viven a treat by Battersea staff.

Staff work with the dogs in a variety of situations to understand what types of home and lifestyle might suit them. This can include spending time with other dogs, meeting strangers, seeing how they react around food and toys and also going through vet checks and other types of handling.

Here, Emma, a Rehoming and Welfare Advisor at Battersea, tells us about a day at work.

As a Welfare Advisor at Battersea’s London site, I work directly with the dogs, looking after them day-to-day and getting them ready to go to their loving new homes.

My work is incredibly varied and dictated by the specific needs of the dogs we have in our care on that particular day, so no two days are ever alike!

My day starts when I head into the kennel block. The first thing I do is turn on the lights and then the radio. You can’t beat a bit of Magic FM with Ronan Keating to start the day!

Then it’s time to walk through the block and to say good morning to the dogs. After that, my team and I go into the kennels, give the dogs some morning cuddles, and then take them out to their individual outdoor spaces. Once they’re out there, we can then clean their kennels and give them fresh bedding and water.

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After the kennel is all fresh and clean, we then bring the dogs back inside and clean the yard area. We then leave the door open, so they have the choice of being inside or out. We also use this time to take out any dogs who are house-trained.

After this, it’s breakfast time for the dogs so we start the production line of making up the morning meals to each dog’s dietary requirements and any other specifications.

Dog being handeled by battersea staff.
Dog being handeled by battersea staff.

At 9am we meet with the team leaders and the canine behaviour and training team to combine our to-do lists to decide what needs to be accomplished by the end of the day. This is also a chance to highlight any specific things to know about or focus on with the dogs that day.

After breakfast, between 10:30am and 1pm, it’s time for walks and playtime, (also known as enrichment).

Enrichment activities help to ease any potential stress, and dogs at Battersea have access to all sorts of different types of activities, including daily walks, social interaction with both people and other dogs (if that’s what they enjoy); food games (using toys such as Kongs, boxes, food puzzles etc.) and opportunities for sensory stimulation such as relaxing music and scent work.

Dog and Buttersea staff on a field.
Dog and Buttersea staff on a field.

If a dog isn’t keen on going out or needs to be kept in for any reason, we'll have some calm time in their kennel area instead. This might involve just sitting quietly with a dog, or even reading to them. I have been known to read a bit of David Attenborough's biography to a dog. It tends to make them fall asleep, which is the highest compliment!

1pm to 2pm is human lunchtime and dog ‘siesta’ time. We give every dog a long-lasting chew, turn down the lights and put on some calming instrumental music to give them an hour to themselves to calm down and rest.

At 2pm, it is lunch time for the dogs, so we head back from our own break, prepare the food and then give them their afternoon meals. While they are digesting their lunch, we usually use the time to write up our observations for each dog we have interacted with that day. Then we aim to get the dogs who aren’t house-trained out and about for another bit of interaction outside.

We try not to do too much with the dogs after 4:30pm so they have that time to relax and settle in for the evening.


Just like humans, dogs require a comprehensive range of vitamins and minerals to stay healthy and agile. SuperDog dog supplements from Vitabiotics have been scientifically developed to safeguard your dog’s diet and to help maintain overall health and wellbeing in dogs of all sizes. Find out more about SuperDog vitamins here.


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Mason Alsuhaily

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