RHINOS, camels and a menagerie of exotic creatures were not enough to distract these four-legged trainees on their quest to become life-saving assistance dogs.

Dogs for Good, a charity which trains up dogs to help people living with a disability, hosted a day trip to Cotswold Wildlife Park to test their mutts' mettle.

The novel sights, smells and sounds were hoped to challenge man’s best friend and push the skills already being taught to prepare the dogs who will later be partnered up with someone.

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Cotswold Wildlife Park describes itself as the only large zoological collection in the UK to welcome dogs and has been dog-friendly since it first opened in 1970.

Dogs for Good, which is based in Banbury, has been using the sight for special training days for a number of years.

A spokeswoman for the charity said: “Being able to take our dogs in training to lots of new places to experience a full range of sights, sounds and smells is a vital part of their training to becoming life-changing assistance dogs.

“They need to be completely at ease and calm within all sorts of surroundings and the more variety, the better.

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“Cotswold Wildlife Park is full of all sorts of different distractions and challenges for our dogs so being able to process all this new information with their trainer there to support them is really helpful.”

Park spokeswoman Debbie Ryan said: “We have been supporting Dogs for Good for some time now and are delighted to play even a small part in training these amazing future assistance dogs.”

Find out more at dogsforgood.org