7:50am Wednesday 16th May 2012
By Sophia Sleigh
The day after a dog won Britain's Got Talent and captured the heart of the nation, pet owners in Epsom were giving thanks for their own pooches.
All creatures great and small were blessed in a special service at St. John the Baptist Church in Stoneleigh on Sunday, May 13.
The Reverend Lynn Hellmuth said: "We had about 100 people and we had many dogs, probably 15-20 - all yapping away.
"One of the things we talked about yesterday was Pudsey - I’ve had no dancing dogs though.
"We had a budgie, a cat and a toddler brought a tortoise.
"They all behaved extremely well - the humans and the animals.
"Everyone was invited to come-up and have a blessing "It’s getting a bit more popular - it’s not something that all churches do.
"They are a great was of just getting people in that might not come to church - so many people love their pets and want to say thanks.
"Some vicars - and I’m one of them - feel particularly strongly this is a really good thing to do."
She said all Christians would agree God loves all animals and whether you are Christian or not people are realising how important pets are and to respect and honour that."
Some people brought along pictures if their pets if their animals were too nervous or had passed away.
There were also refreshments, stalls, tombola and games for children on the day.
There were a lot of Labradors in the congregation so the ladies on the cake stall kept a keen eye on the them.
This was the sixth animal blessing Rev Hellmuth has carried out in her 10 years as a vicar and her second one at St John the Baptist Church.
She said one lady came last year with her 17-year-old dog who was "on its last legs" but it made it to this year’s service too.
Rev Lynn brought along her own dog, Patch, who is a bit nervous but "Team Patch" looked after him while his owner led the service.
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