Six pets with “miracle” survival stories have been named as finalists for the PDSA Pet Survivor Awards 2013 – a competition to find the nation’s pluckiest pets that have beaten the odds to overcome serious illness and injury.

According to the PDSA, it was “overwhelmed” with “amazing” stories after it launched its search for entries in October.

A panel of judges including Atomic Kitten star Liz McClarnon and TV vet Steve Leonard, along with PDSA vets, had the difficult task of shortlisting six finalists. They are:

  • Stray kitten Robbie, who suffered extensive burns after the abandoned sofa he was sheltering under was set alight;
  • Saluki/lurcher cross Will, who was rescued from the Yorkshire Dales after surviving for at least three weeks with a broken leg, no food and no water;
  • Border collie Rex, who was hit by a train travelling at around 50mph, leaving his skull shattered and his left eye out of its socket;
  • Bunny Thumper, who was nearly paralysed after he was attacked by a fox and left for dead;
  • Bengal cat Malteaser, who, after she went missing for five weeks during the February frosts, when temperatures reached -12C, was found collapsed on a compost heap with severe frostbite and had lost half her bodyweight as well as several teeth; and
  • Blue merle border collie Pip, who, while sheltering from the sun under a tractor wheel, was crushed as the vehicle moved forward.

The winner will be decided by a public vote, which is open until midnight on Sunday December 15.
Mr Leonard said: “Judging this competition was tough as there are so many hard-working vets and owners looking after pets that have really been through the mill.

“Reading these stories made me very proud of my profession and grateful to work alongside some dedicated animal enthusiasts. Animals so often surprise us with their stoicism and tenacity, and there are so many lessons we could learn from them.”

People can vote for their favourite Pet Survivor of the Year by texting “vote” followed by their chosen pet’s name to 70099. Each text will result in a £1 donation to PDSA, plus the cost of your usual network message rate. Visit for the finalists’ full stories.

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