A DOG from Wirral is in the running for a national award from specialist dog-food brand, in recognition of his hard work.

‘Spartacus’ has been nominated for a Autarky dog food’s Hardest Working Dog award by Therapy Dogs Nationwide — a national charity where visiting volunteers take their own dogs into establishments to give comfort, distraction, and stimulation.

Spartacus’ owner, Eileen Slattery, said: “Spartacus has visited wide group of people within the community, including residential care homes, helping to improve communication in residents and patients by evoking memories and stimulating conversation.

“We have been visiting the 111 call centres in Liverpool and Bolton as part of the Mental Health Awareness incentive. He has also visited Liverpool College to assist with their Christmas open day for the homeless, where they provided, clothing, showers, haircuts, and a Christmas lunch for so many people. Spartacus and a group of his doggy friends greeted people, helping to easy their fears and anxieties.”

Spartacus is one of three dogs in the running for the third category, Healthcare & Assistance, in which all dogs have shown to have outstanding skills in supporting their owner/individual/group of individuals to the specified needs of their specific charity.

The Autarky Hardest Working Dog will be announced in May, where the overall winner will receive a top prize, including a hamper of canine products worth £500 and a year’s worth of Autarky food.

The winner of the Healthcare & Assistance Dogs category will join Rocket — the winner of the Sports & Performance Dogs category ¬— and PD Captain — the winner of the Service Dogs category — in the final.

Sam Horrell, Autarky CEO, comments: “We are delighted to be running the Hardest Working Dog campaign, as we want to showcase the varying levels of work of active dogs in the UK and to give them the chance to be recognised with a national award. We hope that the public will be as inspired by the dedication of these dogs as we are. Good luck to all of the nominees.”

For more information about the campaign and to read about all three dogs nominated for the third category and your chance to vote, visit www.autarkyfoods.com/hardestworkingdog/