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Husky Day Out a special treat for one special boy

Christchurch’s Husky Day Out a special treat for one special boy

A ‘Husky Day Out’ at the Groynes in Christchurch on Saturday (March 29) will be a special day for an Auckland boy who will have his wish to ride on a sled pulled by a team of huskies granted.

Peter Pirie (aged 10) has multiply-relapsed leukaemia, which he has been battling for seven years. His prognosis is poor. He has a passion for husky dogs and made a wish to see and cuddle a husky and go on a sled ride. Christchurch-based Husky Rescue NZ was asked if there was any way the wish could be made to come true.

“Unfortunately it is still too hot in Auckland for husky sled events, as the dogs can easily overheat when racing,” Husky Rescue NZ founder Michelle Attwood said. “But Peter’s wish came to us just as we were confirming the details for a husky day out here in Christchurch. Thanks to some very generous local sponsorship we have been able to arrange for Peter and his Mum Bridget Pirie to travel to Christchurch where they can join us at the Groynes, cuddle as many huskies as they like and go for a sled ride!”

Peter has Downs Syndrome as well as relapsed Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia (ALL). He was first diagnosed with ALL in April 2007 at the age of three-and-a-half.
He finished treatment in August 2010 and relapsed in February 2011, with a few more relapses in his cerebral spinal fluid since. Although aged ten, his battle with cancer means he is only as big as a six-year-old.

Mum Bridget Pirie says: “After his relapse in January 2013 we were told that Pete can no longer be cured. All they could do was try to prolong his life. But we don't want to ever give up. Keeping Peter’s spirits up is a big part in helping him fight this illness and we’re really grateful for the efforts Husky Rescue NZ and sponsors have made to make this trip possible.”

Michelle says she wants to especially thank Scenic Hotel Group in Christchurch for their generosity in paying for Bridget and Peter’s flights and also for accommodating them at Heartland Hotel Cotswold, Christchurch.
and accommodation. “We’ve also had other Christchurch companies step up to the plate to help make Peter’s wish come true. There’s a wonderful spirit of generosity in our community.”

Fact file


Check out Peter’s Facebook page here: www.facebook.com/PeterPirieSpaceRanger

You can support Husky Rescue NZ here: www.givealittle.co.nz/org/huskyrescuenz



Husky Day Out
The Groynes Dog Park
Saturday 29 March 2014
10am - 4pm
Gold Coin entry

All huskies and malamutes and other spitz breeds welcome.
Sociable dogs have a fenced secure off-lead play area.
View Husky Rescue NZ dogs for adoption.
Sledding demonstration and weight pull demonstration (subject to temperature).

Husky sledding day
Sunday 30 March
From 7:30am
Venue: tba. Reporters welcome to come and have a go at sledding. This is the day that Peter is most likely to get a proper sled ride, though he will get a ‘sample’ at the Groynes on Saturday.
Contact Michelle Attwood (see below) for details as this event, unlike Husky Day Out, is not an open day for the public because of safety logistics.

Husky Rescue NZ
Husky Rescue NZ is a voluntary animal rescue service devoted to the welfare of husky and husky-cross dogs. The service takes in dogs that have been abandoned, mistreated or are unwanted. They assess the dogs, work on any health and behaviour problems (if any) and find new homes. The service also does public education, including school visits and public displays, to try to ensure that people who take on husky breeds as a pet, do so knowing both the advantages and challenges of owning such a high-energy breed.


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