PEOPLE from Buckingham and the dog world have been shocked and saddened by the sudden death of former local businesswoman Mary Rouse in a car accident.
Mrs Rouse 79, of Helmdon Road, Greatworth, was well-known as the former owner of Buckingham Pet Foods and Cayla Kennels. She has also organised dog shows in Greatworth.
She died after her red Suzuki Jimny left the road and hit a tree on Cockley Road, Farthinghoe, at about 4.40pm on Saturday.
Northants Police are asking anyone who witnessed the collision to call the Drivewatch Hotline on 0800 174615.
Secretary of Buckingham Swan Market, John Riches, said Mrs Rouse was ‘a stalwart customer’ of the Swan Market.
“There weren’t a lot of people who didn’t know her,” said Mr Riches, adding that her passing would be ‘a great loss to the pet world’.
He said: “We’ve had dogs for some years and Mary’s always been a person we’ve gone to for advice.”
Jill Spurr, of Dreamwork Border Collies, said: “She was a forthright person who didn’t mince her words, but was incredibly kind, and what she didn’t know about the dogs she was so passionate about could be written on a pinhead.
“I believe she was one of the first people to see the potential of hydrotherapy for dogs, offering it through Cayla Kennels years before it became commonplace.
“She was always active, and for many years was a successful agility handler, and an ardent supporter of local dog training clubs and charities. The dog world is much the poorer for her passing.”
Fundraiser and volunteer administrator for Medical Detection Dogs, Susie Poole, said: “Her contribution to the dog world was just amazing.
“She was always available to help out at fundraising events.
“She was just so actively involved in everything I did for Medical Detection Dogs.
“She was a lovely, lovely lady, a real gem.
“She had a very kind heart. She would do anything for anyone.
“She was an amazing lady and she will be missed.”
The current owner of Cayla Kennels, Susanne Lacey, said: “It’s very sad. She was known by every dog person in Buckingham.
“I don’t think you could operate in any way in the pet caring business without Mary’s approval.”
Photographer Ian Watts, who specialises in dog agility, said: “Mary was an absolute inspiration to many people. She spoke her mind, but always with the best intentions, especially when it came to animal welfare.”