Missy the 3 legged vixen

On March 12th I received a message from a lady by the name of Angie who is part of an amazing group known as the Fox Angels with regards to a young vixen who they had managed to capture after running around for over 7 weeks with bones sticking through her left rear hind leg and foot down in Surrey.
Needless to say by this stage her leg had become badly infected to the point where it was a miracle that she was still alive. However, this little vixen was certainly made of stern stuff for which she kept going back to a lady by the name of Valerie who had been feeding her from when she was a cub with all her siblings and parents. Whilst Val was desperate to call for help, she was also so very attached to Missy and so much so that she was scared that a call for help could lead to euthanasia which in truth it probably would have.
Therefore thank god that she stumbled across the Fox Angels who help to rescue foxes who have been injured or harmed. Trying to keep a long story (and this is a long story) as brief as possible, she (Missy) was captured and thankfully the local veterinary practice operated on her which unfortunately meant amputation of her infected leg.
Lee, from the group did all the running around for which he said the smell was horrendous, but he and others within Fox Angels i.e. Angie, Jude and Lynne were adamant they would go to whatever lengths it took to keep her alive. Thankfully our little vixen did come through the operation and then 3 days later after great care by Lee and his family, she made her way up to Norfolk to stay with me whilst a super new home was being built for her at a local sanctuary which I have been involved with for several years now and run by a lady called Lyz. The first few days really were touch and go for which by day 3, I thought she had gone. Thankfully she was just in a very deep sleep whilst recovering from what had been a huge major ordeal. The stay with me lasted for 23 days with at least 8 visits out to her each day from 6am to midnight. These daily visits included at least 5 feeds combined with clean outs of the cage which she had to be confined in with Lyz administering all the needed meds. During this time, the Fox Angels were constantly asking for updates whilst also offering support so as to make sure our girl got through this.
Get through it she has and what an inspiration. Where there is a will or should we say a spark of life, there is most certainly a way. This clever little fox not only twisted me around her little claw, but hundreds of others who have followed her journey from all over the world on a specific facebook fox group for which she is now in her new home living the life. It has been one hell of an experience whilst also being one hell of a privilege. It is far too easy to say it will be more kind to put an animal down when in truth all it takes is just going those extra few miles to say no, let’s give it a second chance. Our girl Missy has most certainly proved that.
A huge thank you to local businessman John H for all his support and of course to Karen G whilst not forgetting all those other many people who have supported this amazing journey of Missy the fox from the busy streets of Surrey to the calm of Norfolk….

Neil Featherby


Sanctuary update February 2021

Sanctuary update time!

It is craaaaaazy busy as always and we can’t let the snow slow us down. Spring is around the corner and we know what that means: babies and garden injuries!
We are prepping the hospitals by putting in hot water. This will help saving time as some basic washing up can be done inside the hospitals rather than outside in the washing up area. We are also stocking up and moving storage around. As always, you can find the most urgent needs on our amazon wishlist. https://amzn.eu/9uE8XXQ
Thanks to a generous donation we now have a separate metal shed with the things for our horse field. This means that heavy sacks don’t have to be wheelbarrowed through the entire site, back and forward. Thank you!

Building work is never-ending at the site with old buildings being adapted or repurposed
We have built 4 temporary aviaries suitable for birds of prey with wing injuries that are moving into their second stage of rehab. There is also a new aviary for the crows. The dishwasher is now installed, saving us from handwashing the 100s of old GU jars we use for water and food dishes.
Hog ward 1 has been created to prevent a bottleneck in the 2 current hospitals, allowing hogs to move on in their transition from the necessary heat in the ICU down to release temperatures without overburdening the main Hogspital. This means that we can better cope with a high number of intakes – at one point we had up to 25 hedgehogs per day coming in…. Thanks to your amazing support we also changed over lots of our carriers, meaning that we now have the same size carriers and cages that can be stacked safely, rather than a mishmash.

It’s not just Covid making things extra difficult but bird flu out brakes in the UK meant that DEFRA ordered bird owners to cage all birds. 4 large temporary aviaries have been built to house the usually free-running fowl population of Hallswood.
This means a lot of extra straw! Therefore, we are extra grateful to the customers of Ken’s Corn Stores in Taverham prepaying for bales of straw for us!

A new indoor area has been created for Kevin the pig along with his entourage of cockerels who keep him company. I can see a children’s book here, can’t you? Kevin and his friends at Hallswood 😀

It has now been 7 years since we built our first hospital. 7 years! Repairs have been carried out on the floor and the under-counter storage has been improved. I can see that we will have to rebuild or extend in the next year or two.

Do you remember the emergency pond dig last autumn? When our volunteers dug a brand-new pond in less than 1 week? Well, I am soooo happy to say that the pond is looking great and the fish are thriving.

Future projects for this year are:
1. A new outdoor hutch area for hedgehogs. This is for pre-release.
The new area will be covered to make it easier for volunteers and staff to keep clean and dry.
2. A new fox habitat will be built backing onto the hog area providing an improved environment for the resident foxes.
3. A second fox habitat to be built later in the year along with a Deer habitat in the woodland area.
4. New shelving and storage covers to be fitted in the Hogspital.
5. A new office area will be built by the gate enabling the main hospital to expand into the current office with the treatment area situated at the front, mammals in the middle room, and birds in the back room.

As you can see we are busy busy and it is just thanks to you guys we can do this!
I don’t know if you understand just how amazing this is: that thanks to your support, not only can we survive through a pandemic, but grow!

We love you <3



There is only one thing we like better than telling about the amazing wildlife rescues we can do thanks to you and that is getting updates from people adopting from us!

Doodlbug was a cat regularly being bred to make money for her owner. A volunteer befriended and persuaded the owner to allow us to neuter her for free! Lyz went to collect her for neutering, it was an abusive environment (out of control young family) and we felt she could not return to this. After long chats with the owner, they agreed to allow rehoming to happen. Doodlebug was aggressive and scared and wasn’t the nicest of house guests here at the sanctuary, but with time she improved and was rehomed. Sadly, returning as she was struggling to be a friendly pet. After returning to the sanctuary a couple of times she was returning for what we thought was the last time and allowed to be here for the rest of her life. A resident who can be who they are!

Little did we know…..

When we rehome a pet we ask what personality the new owner wants. Then to our surprise, the perfect couple came along!! She has her chance and they get the perfect pet for them :)) She is a madam and they wouldn’t have it any other way! We are all different and we all have a special place in this world!! 🙂

Here’s what her new owners had to say:

“Hi! I adopted a lovely kitty from you in October, doodlebug (the parrot/ shoulder cat!) now called Pickle! I was told by Lyz how missed she is at Hallswood so thought I’d send over some photos of her and let you know she’s very happy being the queen of the house. She’s still feisty when she wants to be but Pickle’s a real softy and loves snuggling up in bed and being cradled like a baby in fact she’s almost completely stopped being a shoulder cat and prefers being cradled, I think maybe she was a parrot for attention!”

What a happy ending!
To help us help more cats such as Doodlebug, please consider sending us a donation to our PayPal. You can either send direct to [email protected] or use the link PayPal.me/Hallswood

Thank you <3

doodlebug 3

Sad start to a Sunday morning :(

One of the most common call outs we have are for deer.
She is beautiful doe, huge kind eyes . Fallow deer stand over 3 ft tall she weighs 150 kgs
How can someone not see her? Yes they can come out of nowhere and have done to me in the past... however this is a wide open Rd with good visibility..... she is part of a 6 strong herd who travel together I have seen them many times.
How could they just leave her?
Why not call someone?
It was a on duty service person who called while on a emergency she found the time!!
Now waiting for the on call vet, she has had some pain relief but may of laid here in pain for so long:( .
Everything has too die but nothing needs to suffer like this:((


At the end of 2019 we were contacted by one of our loyal supporters about a neighbor who was struggling with caring for her three unneutered male cats. We and our supporter agreed to take on one of the cats each. They were neutered, vaccinated and chipped and our one was rehomed. Emily agreed to take her one into her own home.
Fast forward to this September and we were advised that the remaining one cat needed to be helped. Emily fed him while we waited for a space to become available. He was brought to us and kept at the sanctuary until we could get him neutered. This took a little while as it was during the second lockdown and vets were only spaying females. A space became available with Sandra, one of our fosterers, and we were able to get him neutered and vaccinated at our vets.
A few weeks before we had a lady who emailed us wanting to adopt a male tabby cat. This poor boy with us was terribly scared and nervous. We explained the situation to the lady and she went to meet him. She agreed to rehome him. We always try to get as much information about potential adoptees so we can try to find the perfect cat for your situation. Often the match is not instant but when it's found it's purrrrrfect 🙂
This is another happy ending now safely in his new home - just read these comments from the new owner!
"Just to let you know that Gizmo has settled very well, I picked him up a couple of hours ago xx"
"He slept on our bed all night, he's wonderful xx"
"Oh yes, he's wonderful, so affectionate albeit still a little nervous of loud noises xx"
Do you want to help us help more cats like Gizmo?
PayPal us a donation to paypal.me/hallswood or check out our homepage for more info on Hallswood and how you can help us help them <3

Happy caturrrday from Ginger George!

Ginger George was a feral farm cat a few miles away from the sanctuary.
The farm owner had him trapped, neutered and chipped. It was felt he was too wild to tame.
In March last year, he appeared in a garden in Horsford about 5 miles from his “home”.
He made himself a nest in a Laurel tree. He was fed there by one of our fosterers

Sandra Lumbard who could get nowhere near him. In October it was decided to set a trap to try and get him safe for the winter.

We had success and Sandra began to weave her magic on him. To begin was scared but soon started to become affectionate with Sandra. About the same time, we posted about a ginger girl to be rehomed and we had a couple of responses. She was a cat with a few behavioral issues and two potential adopters came forward. The first one met Ella and agreed to rehome her.
This left us with Lesley who had wanted to rehome Ella. We offered her Ginger George but explained his past history and that he may not settle to an indoor life having lived as a feral all his life. She agreed to take him on a month's trial basis as all cats that come from Hallswood are offered.
She was prepared to give him time and space to get used to indoor life and her. To begin with, he was quite scared and skittish but with lots of patience, Lesley won him round.

I’ve messaged Lesley several times for updates and just after Christmas, she said he’s a very good natured boy who purrs away and now would be on her lap permanently if he could. He has no desire to go outside. It’s still a work in progress but Lesley is happy to give him all the time he needs to feel completely secure in his first indoor home.

If you would like to help us help more cats like Ginger George please make a donation towards our vet bill. It’s quite large at the moment as you can imagine with our shops closed our income has reduced dramatically.

Our vets are Chapelfield Costessey 01603 743725, just say it's to pay towards Hallswoods account.
Thanks very much
Too wild to tame :)
Too wild to tame 🙂

Old does not mean not worthy

Hallswoods belief is that everyone deserves a chance - sometimes that means a warm safe home with us for the rest of an animals or birds life 🙂

Most time that will be at the sanctuary, but sometimes a volunteer or member of staff will help out.

This is a story about Rachael and Raymond 🙂

"My job every day at the sanctuary is to check all the animals as I go round and feed and water them all. One day back in October I went in to feed the racer pigeons. I saw this pigeon sitting on the floor at the back of the aviary. I thought the poor little thing had passed away as Lyz has told me many of the pigeons in there are quite old. I walked up to him to pick him up and he was alive! So I took him in to the hospital and was told to put him on a heat mat to warm him up a bit. He was in the hospital for a few weeks after that. So I said to Lyz I would love to take him home. She said I could! So I called him Raymond. He is very old man and he can't fly or perch very well . But he is happy eating drinking and cooing at my house. Since he has been in mine he walks a lot better than what he did do. He still can't fly but he walks around the living room like he owns it lol."

What bird is your favourite?

I must admit I do love pigeons. They have the most beautiful shiny feathers!


Did you know that many of the pigeons brought to us have canker? You can find the tablets we use for this on our amazon wishlist 🙂



Happy ending for Bear

Bear lived unhappily in a multi cat household and spent a lot of her time at UEA. One morning in late June she was clipped by a car . A lovely lady took her to Eaton Vets where it was discovered she had smashed her top and bottom jaw and broken a few teeth.

Unfortunately the previous owner was unable to pay for her care and we stepped in. She had surgery to repair her injuries and stayed at the vets to recover. Bear was then moved to one of our fosterers and stayed there to recuperate. She was well enough to be adopted in early August.

She now lives as an only cat in the countryside far away from busy roads. She is an absolute love bug and makes her new owner laugh every day. She’s brightened up their lives. She loves sitting on the side of the bath waiting for her owner to finish. Recently she’s taken to stealing all the candles in the house together with earrings!

I just love writing these happy stories Bear is one lucky kitty xx