The stage is set for RSPCA South Australia’s main annual fundraiser, the Million Paws Walk, and among the thousands gathering in Victoria Park tomorrow morning will be AFL star Hugh Greenwood.
The popular Adelaide Football Club player has just signed on as an Ambassador for RSPCA South Australia, pledging to use his voice to help the charity fight animal cruelty across the state. The role is a perfect fit for Hugh, who says his love for all creatures great and small stems from his childhood in Tasmania surrounded by animals.
“My Dad worked for the Marine Wildlife Department so I grew up with the ocean and native wildlife as part of my life.
“We had dogs, we had guinea pigs, rabbits, seahorses.
“We had the works – it was heaps of fun.”
Gates open at the Victoria Park event at 9am tomorrow, with walkers setting off at 11am. Walks are also being held at nine regional locations around South Australia and a total of 74 locations around Australia.
Hugh will be attending the city walk with his “two best mates”, French Bulldogs Rioli and Jax.
“My dogs are my kids, I treat them like royalty.
“They’re my release away from training – it’s so good to come home and just chill out with them, go for a walk.
“They’re a huge positive influence on my life.”
While Hugh says he doesn’t expect everyone to spoil their dogs to the extent he does, he hopes to help RSPCA educate people about how to treat and care for their animals.
“When you read about deliberate cruelty and neglect of animals it breaks your heart.
“It just shouldn’t be happening in this day and age.
“Being a voice for these animals and helping RSPCA educate people about animals and how to care for them properly is what I’m passionate about.”
Hugh joins other high-profile South Aussies who have become RSPCA South Australia Ambassadors to speak out against animal cruelty, including Hollywood actress Teresa Palmer, Channel 7 weather presenter Amelia Mulcahy and arch footy rival Hamish Hartlett, who plays for Port Adelaide.
Hamish will also be attending the Million Paws Walk at Victoria Park with his dog Lenny, who is a recent graduate of RSPCA SA’s puppy classes.
It’s not too late to register for tomorrow’s event! Just go to: millionpawswalk.com.au