By James Somper
A pair of globe trotters who fell in love with an abandoned street dog have forked out more than £8500 to save his life – and move him halfway round the world.
Alex Jewkes, 28 and Chloe Henley, 24 fell in love with mongrel street puppy Peso after they saw him tied to a lamp post and crying out for while on holiday in the Philippines in January 2019.
And now the pooch is completely unrecognisable after the couple spent months nursing him back to health – and have now brought him back to the UK after crowdfunding £8,500.
Alex and Chloe are now living with the brave puppy at their home in Great Yarmouth, Norfolk, and say it’s nothing short of a miracle that he’s back home safe and sound with them.
Chloe, a paramedic, said: “It feels like a dream come true now that he’s back with us. We wake up each morning and can’t quite believe that he’s here.
“The moment we picked him up from quarantine and drove home with him was incredible. After all that time, effort and money he was finally coming back with us.
“It was a phenomenal amount of money in the end. We never thought it would cost that much.
“It might seem like a waste of money to some people but without it we would have had to have left him behind and he would be dead, no shadow of a doubt.”
Chloe and Alex were visiting the Philippines as part of a career break when they came across the poor puppy crying out for help and tied to a lamp post in a backstreet in El Nido, Palawan Island.
Heartbroken, the couple bartered a price to buy the puppy and nursed the severely malnourished, dehydrated and terrified puppy back to health.
Chloe said: “We woke up and heard a dog screaming and crying and saw a small puppy tied up.
“We were just about to leave the hostel so had all our bags packed but we went out to give him some water.
“He was tied to a post and was surrounded by glass, rubble and old cans.
“We gave him some food, water and a quick bath but he was in a terrible state, he had awful fleas and looked horrendous.
“We decided to call him Peso because we bought some pork for him which was exactly 21 Peso. We felt it was meant to be.
“He was exhausted, he walked 10 steps and then collapsed.”
The couple raised £8,500 on GoFundMe to cover their travel costs back to the UK and arrived with their beloved Peso in May 2019.
After spending a month in quarantine, Peso was finally allowed to return home with Chloe and Alex at the end of June.
Chloe said: “He was on the same plane as us and as soon as we arrived back he went straight into quarantine.
“The moment we picked him up and drove him home, we knew it had all been worth it.
“Now he’s living with us we can tell the difference he’s made. He has made us much more responsible, made us realise that anyone can do anything they put your mind to.
“He’s one dog out of the millions who need saving.
“You obviously can’t save them all but if you do your best to save one, that’s still one who’s been saved.
“We never went to the Philippines to rescue a dog, we went for a holiday.”
The couple added that the now brave Peso is now a shadow of his former self.
Alex said: “If you’re sat on the sofa he’ll come up to you and give you a cuddle.
“He’s very faithful, he loves kids and always wags his tale when he sees a stranger.
“He loves meeting other dogs too. He’s a shadow of the small, frightened skeleton we first saw on that back street.
“He is, in our opinion the best dog in the whole world.”