Here's a story to brighten an autumn day.

Found cold and abandoned in a London garden aged just days old, things were looking bleak for kitten Ava – until she was rushed into Battersea Dogs & Cats Home, where she met Labrador Barney.

The now five-week-old kitten is still so young that she needs handfeeding every two hours and she’s being fostered by dedicated Battersea Vet Nurse Megan Goldring.

Ava spends much of her day in the Battersea clinic office – and it is here that she met Barney, who quickly decided that he was the top dog for the job of kittensittting.

The three-year-old Labrador has been taking his duties very seriously – snuggling with Ava, playing with her, and monitoring her every move around the office to make sure she’s safe. The duo even like to watch TV together during break time, with Paul O’Grady: For the Love of Dogs being their favourite programme.

Like Ava, Barney had a difficult start to life. He was born on a puppy farm and ended up with owners who soon found they couldn’t cope with a lively puppy. They bought Barney into Battersea in 2014 and Head Nurse Rachel Ab’dee fell in love with him and adopted him.

Rachel said: “Barney adores Ava and can’t wait to come into Battersea every morning so he can see her. It’s great for Ava too, because she doesn’t have a mum or brothers or sisters, so Barney has become her best friend and favourite playmate. It’s wonderful to see them so happy together and to know that their most difficult days are behind them.”

Ava already has a home lined up for once she’s old enough to leave Battersea, but there are plenty of grown-up cats and dogs looking for a home at the world-famous shelter. To meet them, visit


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