Working at an animal shelter is a life-changing experience for everyone. Volunteer work teaches you the value of altruism and gives you a better understanding of the world outside yourself. But for Jan Brown, a 52-year-old mother from the UK, volunteer work would do more than teach her important life lessons. It would reveal her life’s calling … knitting sweaters for Greyhounds!

Jan began her amazing business after volunteering at a small family run shelter named Greyhound Rescue Northeast in Tyne and Wear in 2008. She made sweaters for the Greyhounds there, and they were so popular that she was able to turn it into a business. In 2012, she quit her job and began her greyhound sweater business Knitted With Love!

Jan has created over 300 sweaters since beginning her business. Each one takes up to 20 hours to complete.

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Jan also makes festive hats for the dogs!

This woman knits cosy hats and jumpers for homeless greyhounds at Christmas

Doesn’t he look cute in his little Pom-Pom hat?

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The best thing about these sweaters is that they’re handmade. That means each one is one-of-a-kind.

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Many of these dogs won’t be adopted before New Years and won’t be getting gifts for the Holiday Season. It’s great that they get something nice like these sweaters to cuddle up with.

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Jan’s sweaters also serve an important function beyond decoration. Greyhounds and Whippets have slim frames and short fur that makes them excellent runners, but their delicate builds don’t retain heat well. Jan’s sweaters give these pups an extra layer of insulation, so they don’t catch a chill during their walks.

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Dogs might not be able to talk, but they’re really, really smart. We have no doubt that they appreciate this great gift.

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Stories like these make us remember that the Holiday season isn’t only about gifts, it’s about spreading as much good will as you can. So be sure to laugh and love as much as possible this December. If you’d like to buy one of Jan’s gorgeous sweaters or hats, check out her website!

All image source: Knitted With Love