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PDSA Highlights the Support Needed for People and Pets during the Cost-Of-Living Crisis in Emotive Spot


The brand response TV ad for the campaign was directed by Charlie Thorne and produced by Hunky Dory

PDSA Highlights the Support Needed for People and Pets during the Cost-Of-Living Crisis in Emotive Spot

PDSA has been a lifeline for sick and injured pets since 1917 – providing vet care for people who wouldn't otherwise be able to afford it. But as the cost of living continues to rise, vet care could be out of reach for many. Thousands of loving pet owners are facing the impossible decision of whether to heat their home, put dinner on the table or treat their sick pets. As part of PDSA’s continued efforts to keep people and pets together, we’re asking, “what would you do when the cost of loving gets too high?”

Best friends forever

The brand response TV ad for the campaign, directed by Charlie Thorne and produced by Hunky Dory, tells the story of a family having to make tough decisions in the face of the cost-of-living crisis.

On the face of it, we see Holly and her best friend Jack (her beloved Jack Russell) sharing adventures and getting on with life as any innocent eight-year-old should. Playing games, sharing secrets, even eating their meals together. Both blissfully unaware of the subtly unfolding sub-plot that threatens the whole family.

Because, interspersed between scenes of this blissful childhood, we see little moments of jeopardy – everyday snapshots that hold a mirror up to the lives of our audience and show them a piece of themselves. We see Holly’s mum struggling with the bills. Skipping meals so that she can feed her family. Sharing tense phone calls and whispered conversations. But all the while protecting Holly and Jack from the harsh realities of life in 2023.

But their whole world threatens to come crashing down when Jack fails to come for dinner one evening. Holly finds him seriously unwell in his dog bed, heartbroken for her sick friend. But it is mum’s expression that gives it all away – not only is their beloved pet sick, but – like half of UK pet owners – there’s no way they can afford a large vet bills.

Thankfully, this is where PDSA comes in. As we join mum and Holly in the PDSA waiting room (filmed in the real PDSA pet hospital in Bow, and featuring real PDSA staff), their worried looks turn to relief and joy as the best friends are reunited after life-saving treatment. 

“From the first moment I saw this idea on the page, It connected with me, and hopefully our film connects with many others out there who are living hand to mouth… stories like this can really capture a moment in time, but they can also help us move through it by showing that help is out there, and communicating the simple fact that we are not alone. I’d like to thank everybody involved with this project who really came together to tell this story, which shows I think. It was a pleasure to direct from start to finish." said director Charlie Thorne.

PDSA. Keeping people and pets together.


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HunkyDory Films, Wed, 08 Mar 2023 09:16:00 GMT