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Dog's life a charm for Etheridge and Warnock

24 Mar 2019
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Cardiff City goalkeeper and manager helping local rescue home with regular lucky walks

On the morning before Cardiff City take on Chelsea next Sunday in a match vital for their battle against relegation, you will probably find Bluebirds manager Neil Warnock out for a walk with a dog or two.

Warnock and his goalkeeper Neil Etheridge have given their support to Cardiff Dogs Home, which takes in around 1,000 dogs every year and looks to re-home as many as it can.

The Cardiff pair have joined an army of volunteers who walk the dogs on a daily basis. It helps the dogs to be more relaxed, boosting their re-homing chances in the process.

A visit has also become a good luck charm for Warnock.

"For our last game, normally, we'll go out for a really quick walk or something in the morning on a matchday," says Sharon Warnock, Neil’s wife. "But, Neil actually took the dogs out because it was one of those dodgy-weather days."

Cardiff won later that day, beating West Ham United 2-0, so the Warnocks will be back on Sunday to see if the charm can continue.

"He's superstitious! So that means that he'll take the dogs out in the hope that we'll have a good performance," Sharon says.

Easing pressure

For Etheridge and his fiance, Alex Solera, win or lose, taking the rescue dogs for a walk helps to relieve the pressure of what has happened on the pitch.

"It takes your mind off things," says Etheridge. "With having a dog, you know there are some days that we may have lost, we may have even won.

"But, I'll just be like, I want to go walk the dog after a game."

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