A MUCH-LOVED family pet has been reunited with the abandoned dog that gave her a second chance at life.

Barney the labradoodle, a Labrador poodle cross, has been hailed a hero after he donated blood to little Ellie, a jackawawa, or Jack Russell, chihuahua cross, after she suffered suspected rat poisoning.

Ellie’s owners Natasha Krejzl, 28, and David Spooner, 34, have now launched a campaign to find five-year-old Barney a loving home.

Mr Spooner said: “Before Ellie became ill, we had never heard of dogs being able to give blood.

“Barney was so brave and is such a lovely dog.

“He loves people, but unfortunately does not get on with other dogs, otherwise we would have taken him in ourselves.”

Two-year-old Ellie was taken ill on Thursday night.

Her owners took her to the PDSA at Pitsea, where vets told them she would need an emergency blood transfusion.

However, the PDSA does not have donor dogs itself, so the family had to find a dog to give blood.

Ms Krejzl, of Central Avenue, Canvey, said: “We rang round all our friends and family and the Basildon Council dog warden, who suggested we try Acres Way kennels, near Thundersley.

“We spoke to them and they rang back a few minutes later and said they had a dog which would be able to help.”

For safety reasons, only dogs above 25kg and with full vaccinations can give blood.

Mr Spooner added: “I went to collect Barney and took him to the PDSA.

“He was huge in the back of my car, but he was very calm throughout the car journey.

“When we got to the PDSA he was very brave and so relaxed, the vets did not need to put a muzzle on him. He has given us back our Ellie. We just think he is a hero dog and would love to help find him a loving home.”

Ellie spent 24-hours at the PDSA and is now recovering at home. It is thought she will make a full recovery.

Debbie Dyer, supervisor at Acres Way, in Great Burches Road, Thundersley, said: “We have never had this kind of request before.

“The family needed quite a big dog. I spoke to my colleagues and that’s when we thought of Barney.” Barney is five years old and has been at Acres Way for a couple of months.

Ms Dyer added: “He is really placid, but does not get along with other dogs. He would best suit a family with older children.”

Anyone interested in giving Barney a home can contact Acres Way on 01268 770402.