An animal rescue charity set up by a Royal Marine in Devon has had a welcome offer of help from the comedian Ricky Gervais.

Nowzad finds new homes for stray dogs and cats found in Afghanistan.

Many are brought back by soldiers and marines who've found them while on a tour of duty.

Founder Pen Farthing was inspired to start the charity while on a tour of duty with 42 Commando Royal Marines in the town of Now Zad in the Helmand Province of Afghanistan.

His current dog Tali was one of the first animals he brought back.

Credit: ITV West Country

She brought her little pups in under our back gate. She had a little pup in her mouth and then dropped in off on our side and then she went out again and brought another puppy in. She did that six times.

PEN FARTHING, Charity founder

The charity's now reunited more than 1000 service personnel and soldiers with the animals they've befriended while serving on the front line.

They've been re-homed around the world.


Credit: NOWZAD
Credit: Nowzad
Credit: Nowzad
Credit: Nowzad
Credit: Nowzad

The soldiers have come from all over, Canada, Britain, New Zealand, South Africa, all the European Countries. And these animals, the dogs and cats have befriended the soldiers and the soldiers befriended them, and helped them get through their tour of duty. Like me, they can't bear to leave the animal behind.

PEN FARTHING, Charity founder

The charity's grown and now runs a sanctuary and veterinary clinic in Kabul.

The aim is to find good homes for stray and poorly treated animals and improve their welfare and conditions.

They've now been supported by Ricky Gervais - who has become a patron and is donating proceeds from recent stand-up gigs.