Say hello to our handsome hounds and cuddly cats.

This week’s Guardian is a celebration of national pet month and continues our search for the champion Pet Pawtrait of 2021.

We asked readers to submit pictures of their beloved animals and the deadline closed on Sunday.

Whether it’s a doting dog, cute cat, rabbit, fish, gerbil or something a little more exotic, we’re a nation of animal lovers and pets are a special and much-loved part of so many of our homes.

As these wonderful pictures show, we’re clearly no different in West Essex and East London but which is our prize-winner?

You’ll find a voting form in this week’s paper and now it’s up to you to help decide who wins our £100 gift card.

Make sure you clearly include the number of the pet and send your forms to Guardian Pet Pawtrait Vote Form, Unit 1 Brunel Court, Brunel Way, Severalls Industrial Estate, Colchester, Essex, CO4 9XP

Newsquest terms and conditions apply and the closing date for vote forms is April 30.

For more details, visit www.newsquest.co.uk/prize-competition-rules and www.newsquest.co.uk/privacy-policy

Send us a picture of your family pet

"Send us your best pet piccy and you could win £100 gift card and your family pet the title of BEST PET PAWTRAIT of 2021"

We asked for your responses - this is what you sent.

Denise norton

Name of your pet?
NUMBER ONE: This is Chloe, she is about 4 years old and is a rescue cat

Picture upload

Epping Forest Guardian: HelloHello
Hello

Donna Norton

Name of your pet?
NUMBER TWO: This is Simba. He is 3 years old

Picture upload

Epping Forest Guardian: I can see you xxI can see you xx
I can see you xx

Sue Suresh

Name of your pet?
NUMBER THREE: Toffee

Picture upload

Epping Forest Guardian: Can't escape the Pup-arazziCan't escape the Pup-arazzi
Can't escape the Pup-arazzi

Jennifer Howes

Name of your pet?
NUMBER FOUR: Kiki

Picture upload

Epping Forest Guardian: Our family Bengal cat enjoying the sun.Our family Bengal cat enjoying the sun.
Our family Bengal cat enjoying the sun.

Sam cantale

Name of your pet?
NUMBER FIVE: Zac

Picture upload

Epping Forest Guardian: Zac the bravest cat in the worldZac the bravest cat in the world
Zac the bravest cat in the world

Sam cantale

Name of your pet?
NUMBER SIX: Fluffy

Picture upload

Epping Forest Guardian: Mini lion manMini lion man
Mini lion man

Maria Parini

Name of your pet?
NUMBER SEVEN: Jess

Picture upload

Epping Forest Guardian: You looking at meYou looking at me
You looking at me

Sheree Violet

Name of your pet?
NUMBER EIGHT: Bertha

Picture upload

Epping Forest Guardian: Bertha in lockdownBertha in lockdown
Bertha in lockdown