THE owner of ‘St Helier’s Most Regal Pet’ is urging Islanders to consider adopting a rescue animal, saying that her dog Buddy has changed her life.
Jenna Baker’s toothless, paddleboard-loving chihuahua beat off competition from a cat and a rabbit to clinch the top spot following a public vote.
Ms Baker said that the 12-year-old goes everywhere with her and has made her realise the importance of getting out and about.
Buddy won the competition, run by the Parish of St Helier on its Facebook page St Helier Town Centre and Events, with 352 votes.
Mr Kilmowski – a cat with an expressive face – came second with 307 votes,
and third place was taken by a bunny called Percy, who polled 298 votes.
Ms Baker, who works at the JSPCA as a veterinary nurse and veterinary department manager, adopted Buddy in June 2021.
She said she makes bow-ties for him in her free time, including for Valentine’s Day, Christmas and ‘Gotcha Day’ – similar to a birthday for rescue pets.
Describing how Buddy has changed her life, she said: ‘He made me realise the importance of life and taking care of yourself.
‘My friends have noticed a difference in me with him. I think Buddy brought me out of my shell a little bit.’
She said that when Buddy was rescued, he needed to have dental work done which resulted in all his teeth being removed.
Last year, because of an injury to his back leg, Buddy had to have physiotherapy and hydrotherapy, and Ms Baker walked him in a pram so he could get outdoors.
Ms Baker said it was easy to drum up support for Buddy because her friends and family knew his personality.
‘Most of my friends and family know Buddy. If we’re going for brunch I bring him with me – we go to dog-friendly places.
‘If you’ve got a lap, you’re his favourite. He just likes a warm lap.’
Ms Baker said she was grateful to the Parish of St Helier for holding the competition, allowing people to talk about their pets. She said the entire competition was ‘fantastic’.