St Albans dog walk fitting tribute to CEO of national charity

Adrian Burder. Picture: James Lincoln

Adrian Burder. Picture: James Lincoln - Credit: Archant

Dog walkers in St Albans are gathering for a last hoorah in tribute to a man who worked passionately for a national pooch charity.

St Albans resident and CEO of Dogs Trust, Adrian Burder, unexpectedly passed away on October 31 from a short illness.

Having walked Adrian’s rescue labrador Skipper and rescue terrier Ruby for four years, co-owner of Verulam Pet Services Sarah Abbott has organised a memorial stroll in aid of the Dogs Trust.

She said: “He was one in a million and you will never meet a bigger animal lover. He was incredibly kind.

“I love animals and I think somebody like him deserves to be recognised. He was an unsung hero, he never bigged himself up or boasted about what he had done, he was a humble man who did amazing things for dogs around the UK.

“He needs to be remembered for what he did. There are many dog people around St Albans and I think they would like to give something back.”

Following a stint in marketing at Cruelty Free International, then called the British Union for the Abolition of Vivisection, Adrian joined Dogs Trust as head of fundraising in 1994, then called the National Canine Defence League.

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He was pivotal in the government’s decision to make microchips compulsory for all pet dogs and helped the charity more than double the number of its rehoming centres.

Adrian was also chair of Dogs Trust Ireland, and CEO of Dogs Trust Bosnia and Herzegovina - which tackled a problem with strays in those countries.

In 2016 he set up Dogs Trust Worldwide to award grants for pooch projects internationally and in 2017 he created Dogs Trust USA.

Acting CEO of Dogs Trust Jim Monteith said: “Adrian was one of a kind – his passion for animal welfare changed the lives of millions of dogs in the 24 years he was at Dogs Trust.

“He will be terribly missed by staff, trustees and volunteers past and present and we are so grateful for his immeasurable contribution to making the world a better place for man’s best friend.

“We are all still letting this tragic news sink in.”

The walk will take place from the John Bunyan pub on December 2 at 12pm. No booking required.

Donate to Sarah’s memorial walk at