Wednesday, 21 December 2011

And a partridge in a pear tree, nearly

A little funny found, as ever by Poppy and Roly's mum!

Friday, 16 December 2011

A quick roundup actually not quick at all....A long round up not finished haha

I thought it would be nice to do a round up of the guys, we hear snippets about them throughout the year though rarely is everyone mentioned.

I won't start with Flute and Tips or we know there will not be enough time to post about everyone else!

Tash our dear old girl seems to have recovered well from her vestibular attack, she is hard of hearing and not just by choice! She is still enjoying her walking though we have changed who she goes out with and she doesn't walk as far or as hard. I think she enjoys her mooching, sniffing more so that is what we do. I do love her long suffering looks when we dare to ask her to obey a command even using the word obey sounds ridiculous when we are talking about Tash.

Harry is his usual daft self, he delights in all fetching games still has that magnetic draw to water as all retrievers seem to have. He is more noisy as he gets older and if he doesn't manage to get to the ball first he is happy to shout his disgust. He does make me laugh when he works himself because Harry working himself means a passage like movement though not at all sombre( Passage is a slow trot with a defined lifting of the legs), you recall him and he stops just before knocking you flat on his back. I can barely believe he is in his seventh year I remember his first walk so vividly.

Nero comes out with us less and less, in fact he only comes out now when he howls non stop and Madeleine gives up and books us in, that boy knows exactly what he wants! As his mum is home it makes sense for him to spend more time at home and he hated to go home early but he really couldn't manage all day so it is nice to know when he is desperate to come out he makes it plain. It is amazing to thing that at ten month old we were told he had no elbow joints and severe hip displasure and would never make old bones. At over eleven( or is he more I forget to add years on as they pass!) he has enjoyed many years of walking mainly because I refused to keep him on the lead and do minimum amount of walking. I am a firm believer that the muscles can support the joints if the joints are lacking in form, what you must do though is keep the dog fit, take care to warm them up and do not play ball games that require twisting and turning.

Taggart is doing well despite having a hormone problem, he too is slowing down his front wrist joints are sore after years of abuse chasing his nemesis….cats! I will never forget the day he ran straight up a vertical garage wall to chase a cat and no he DID NOT catch it as I was baring down on him with all my force to make sure he didn't, his mums face was a picture. He hasn't den his amazing bum slapping move for so long I only hope that is done to the weather rather than a lack of talent or desire!

Poppy and Truffle. Well Poppy will always be held so dear to my heart, not in part due to the time we have spent worrying about her! There is no sign of her cancer returning( fingers as ever firmly crossed) and her sinus problem linked to the chemo is well managed, she is unfortunately due to go in for her Epylis removal under anaesthetic a common boxer/ bull breed problem so hope she comes out of that in her usual bouncy form. She had been madly in love with Harvey though he was unceremoniously dumped last week, wonder if it is her sore mouth? He still looks at her adoringly but Harvey is a fickle creature and soon transferred his affections to two other dogs. She is such a bruiser yet a real pudding and when she stands looking at you you know with the merest hint of invitation she will come, with a wiggle of her head, and bounce you in true tiger style.

Truffle has been a little minx! A true staffie, despite having a dash of something else in her, she is easy to wind up and loves any excuse to have a blast. A very reliable dog I can rely on her to be sweet with other dogs and she was one of the first to be entrusted to give Max the akita a full on play session without fireworks if he over stepped the mark whilst learning. So why has she been a minx? Her enthusiasm has definitely overcome her inhibition, she has started falling out of the van( rum Truffle I have seen that move done many times before with far more subtlety than you manage) pretends she couldn't possibly sit still ( well I couldn't possibly let you off to play or throw the frisbee!) but I do love her enthusiasm and she is a beautiful fun reliable dog with a what the hell attitude you can't help but admire.

Bobby has been most disgruntled whilst at the field…he has had to wear a muzzle. Now the thought of Bobby wearing a muzzle is hilarious but this is to stop him eating too much grass. He then throws it up on a night time passes out and manages to mess everywhere in the process scaring the living daylights of his mum and dad. He is such a softy but that is what is so irresistible. My favourite thing with Bobby is when he decides he is going to play, he makes the most hilarious noises spins like a spinning top and off he goes with the dogs on his heels. I am so pleased his dad managed to get another job, no mean feat these days, as it means our Bobajob is back!

Lola is definitely the moodiest bitch I know though it is a close run thing as Esther is prone to more than the odd mood swing. She comes out bouncing, or slinking like it is exam day at school….she goes in the van looks at who is in and slinks in or thrusts herself in with gusto, it's never down to who is in there it is down to Lola mood of the morning. One thing we can guarantee is Lola is always up for aggravation, for running her heart out and never one for a road leader walk. she loves her darker beagle side tough we do see her puggy side when it comes to cuddles. We are working hard on her frustration control as she has none!

Esther has managed to snap out of her ' I am not playing sniff' stage all very understandable as she has had to adjust to a major life change…called Leo! Being the dog now she has gotten used to her human brother and is back to being a sweetie with a brain. You always have to be one step ahead of her but then that keeps things interesting. She has also acquired a new tactic for initiating play…humping. she humps her chosen playmate and it always works so what a tactic to have.

Louie has grown up to be a real darling, he was not an easy pup and I admit to feeling somewhat frustrated with him. He is such a firm favourite with all the guys and loves to be rabbit though as time passes I have noticed he is becoming the hunter rather than the hunted. He has quite a few males admirers and even worse he isn't the least bit bothered by a bit of sexy banter off them so we have to be chaperones! I do love seeing him jump his garden wall to get into our van.

Harvey is certainly providing lots of entertainment at the moment with his romances, love matches and heart break. He is still a little( take that little comment with a pinch of salt I am being generous) prickly but we know when he is likely to blow and how to manage him, dogs like Harvey teach you not to take things for granted and you learn so much! He seems to be doing fine with his front feet so long may that last as his make up predisposes him to sore toes.

Sophie Doll is simply amazing though I doubt Sam would agree if you ask her after her many trips into the dirtiest puddle only to emerge once cream now mudmonster. Addisons is such a serious condition and yet with management she is doing so well and without doubt enjoys every minute of her mad life. You can't help but laugh at her waddle trot as she heads towards the horizon she does like to adventure though she would prefer us to go a little faster so we would let her get there faster. When it comes to water, mud, puddle and foul smells she beats Harry hands down and her pale cream colour seems to be a challenge for her….

Bertie and Beau, whilst still owning the title ' the Gistapo' are much sweater dogs, Bertie is a real snuggle bug and tries his hardest to keep out of trouble, he does occasionally look for it and comes out smelling of roses at home luckily he doesn't do this with us. Beau is still a sad mixture of extreme arrogance with little self confidence mixed up with more than a dash of indignation. He makes he long for him to let go and actually enjoy himself we see snippets of joy when he chats up Suzy or Tash and they are a prime advert for castration! They have really enjoyed their selfs being walked with just Flute and Tips as they know there is no interest taken in them and they have no interest in mine so they tend to enjoy their walk taking in the smells and scenery.

Jasper! Jasper needs to learn all things come to those that wait and best of all are quiet….he has definitely not learn this yet. He is hilarious t watch when he runs, those ears take a life of their own, his tail mostly a flag becomes a periscope in long grass you follow his progress watching that periscope fly back and forth, of course all of this is always joined by the gob. He has finally decided Murphy is not an alien to be expelled he now sees him as a running challenge both are very similar in many way, those big lugs, flapping lips and legs that never seem to stop only Murphys legs are substantially longer.

Murphy is maturing into a whopping big lump who is actually learning to meet new things with interest instead off fear, we had to teach him to him to go through stiles/ through fences over and under fence out of sheer necessity he is simply too heavy to lift over. once shown he now trusts us to at least try. however he then has to do a leap and lap of honour which usually means scattered dogs and us with tail whipped ears, ow! He is less prone to leg and feet abrasions thankfully though he now seems to get tail rubs! That sums up Murphy he tends to blunder from one problem to another….if a dog was ever going to win mars for enthusiasm Murphy's ya boy.

I am sure Joanne will be delighted to hear Sirus is currently our heathen. If there is a 'wrong' way to do something Sirus will do it, he will then flaunt it only to then have to be rescued, removed or popped onto the leader before we offer him up to any passing stranger( I jest). Now that is not to say he doesn't try and when he tries it is fantastic to watch him at his best. Or maybe it is just cos we don't see it often so we get excited when it happens….the spotted wassick.

Where there is naughty here is always nice….Nanci is just exceptional for a deaf dog she is always let off and we barely have to give her extra consideration as we all know each other so well. She does have her 'I can't hear you' moments which with her means turning away when we give her direction! You can almost see her going 'drat!' when she realises her peek to see if we are still asking was spotted and that means she will have to do it, funny girl. She is both very dog friendly and human friendly so we do have to watch her when we meet people cos she always wants to be their best friend. Her only real vice is sneaky bullying when the frisbee is out but forearmed is forewarned so she is foxed before she gets a chance!

Norman should be an official ambassador for all things staff or bully as no one can be scared or opinionated about Norm. He also should be on weight watchers! He is spoilt and takes things to heart, if there is a raised voice it is clearly his fault, I can just imagine Norman would be a great marriage counsellor you would feel so guilty for upsetting the dogs you'd end up not arguing at home just to keep the dog happy! I long to see him as active as he used to be when he would play with Vinnie for a good forty minutes tumbling over and roughhousing…his games are more sedate which is a shame. Ooh I do love our Norman.

Can I have a rest now? I can feel the need for a leg stretch and a dog walk coming on so I will come back to the updates and chuckle at all their little foibles. You just gotta love 'em and we do!

Thursday, 8 December 2011

Christmas gift ideas, some random some tremendous! great article yee gods this one scares me though I am sure some will enjoy it

Lost dog in Morpeth

If anyone lives in the Morpeth area of Northumberland, near Pegswood - a brindle coloured one year old Border terrier (male) has gone missing (as of Monday) and its loss is causing such deep distress in one particular family... its safe retrieval could save a life. Please post up here if you have any news at all.

I will post a photo a soon as one is available.

You can contact me via my email:

Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Now and again you take a photo that just makes you smile. These two are like a double act and I couldn't help but laugh, I even ended up joining in and doing the motions:

Bring me sunshine, in your smile, bring me laughter all the while.....'

11 dogs, two horses and a rabbit

Despite walking along chatting non stop, I know that may surprise you all, Sam heard voices ahead so we called the guys in. All tucked in lovely and we asked them to sit as the two riders and their horses gawped at us. A lot of horses won't pass until you talk to them and they realise we aren't some terrible trap to catch an unsuspecting neddy. So as we talked to the riders I walked across to Esther who was pretending she was sitting rather than sitting, who says dogs can't lie?

No sooner had I set of and I managed to bump an unsuspecting sitting rabbit( we call them sitters even though they are lying down clapped down hard trying not to be spotted) needless to say off it shot like a rabbit possessed( so would I if there had been eleven dogs sitting in wait!).

Well much to everyones surprise not a single dog moved, not even the rabbit hunters! We looked at each other eyes wide. Woohoo!

We were delighted, the riders compliments singing in our ears but what we really were thinking off is the potential carnage if they had indeed chased the rabbit! we would have had yipping dogs left right and centre and two already wired horses depositing their riders unceremoniously at our feet!

The rest of the walk and indeed the rest of the walks all followed in the same thread, not a foot out of place.

Well our winter tyres are now on, I had a captive audience at the garage with everyone wanting to know if they get on, how don't they fight, whoa look at the size of them beethoven dogs and what are them greyhound things to name but a few of the comments!

Coffee and a sandwich time for me and with the heater running I can practically hear the snoozing from here....think it is indeed warmer in the van than in here!

Thursday, 1 December 2011


It is with great sadness and regret that I have to say that Sky is no longer with us.

At a whopping 14 years old he was a great age especially for his breed. Only it doesn't help much that he was a great age it doesn't stop the ache that they leave behind.

When I first met him he was definitely unimpressed with us, he was used to his routine and we simply came along and shot that to pieces. How dare us! First was the issue of his bed. His bed was Debbie's bed and he would get off it when he was good and ready. No Sky has always had an impeccable temperament but you don't mess with his mummy love.

We came to a fairly amicable agreement that if he didn't want to get off the bed I would take the edges of the duvet and effectively deposit him on his feet on the floor. He took it all in good grace I have to say unceremonious though it was.

Another peculiarity was his travelling habits. He pretty much barked at the top of his voice the whole way there. Now you can imagine that wasn't going to be conducive to a happy nanny / dog relationship so we bit by bit managed to deal with that though he still loved to shout with his mum.

I also remember well the very enthusiastic thank you's when I managed to trim his nails. Now he faffed and huffed, complained and whined as only whinerarmers can but I am used to dogs being like that at first so I just got cracking and soon enough it was done. Debbie however was gobsmacked as he usually had to be held down by at least a nurse and a vet to do his nails. Ignorance of course is bliss. Maybe he was just so shocked at the bloody cheek of me haha. I never had any more problems with him with his nails and the bedroom tantrums are just a distant memory.

I loved the first time I was allowed to give him a polite peck on the nose which soon came a kiss then he would even come to me for a kiss. A special honour indeed and treat as such I love the aloof dogs who choose to share rather than offer it to all.

You can't help notice those ears always flapping even if there isn't a breathe of wind and like silk, his nose was always in the air scenting all those magical things we humans haven't a hope to smell. I will never forget his kind face and his amazing show trot, he always trotted with great pride as if he were entering the grand arena at Crufts.

It seems the more you go through with a dog and owner, the more they become firmly attached to your heart, I often wonder how much room there is in there yet there is always more room. I just hope that losing Sky doesn't mean we lose his mum from the Petnanny family she has been around and watched many of Sky's pals come and go.

To say goodbye is the hardest part and I hope he is running or rather trotting ears flapping nose in the air with his great pal Grace the Dalmation, Swift and Buck at the deer park giving those pesky rabbits a bit aggravation!

Hard work

There is no excuse I have simply found the blog too hard to keep up with recently, with updating our very popular facebook site it is hard to sit down and write a blog as well. Ella is now home after having her ovaries removed, unfortunately she has a wound infection on one of the operation sites so her friend the vet is calling AGAIN! It has been a bit like a neutering clinic at our place( Bruce is scared and sleeps wrapped up tight at night I can tell you!) as the two Podenco pooches have been castrated. The first night was very uncomfortable for them but now is the difficult part, keep them calm and not bouncing out of their skins.

Well I have shocked myself by having my cards ready, in fact I have even managed to design a card and have it printed ready for a customer. Our calendar photos are nearly all taken so I feel quite virtuous which is dangerous....I am well known for buying cards early then forgetting I needed to send them, ahurm.

We have welcomed a lovely lurcher called Izzy and in true lurcher style she scared the living daylights out of us by leaping onto a fence. A fence that wasn't even in the way and she didn't leap OVER the fence no Izzy had to leap onto it so managed to give her some nasty abrasions daft dog so now as soon as we see a fence we watch her like a hawk in case she feels the urge to fly without the greatest of ease! My favourite comment was from her owner.....saying that Izzy as grounded....we wish!

With another sad loss it just reminds me that I don't feel like I am yet used to the idea that Dowis isn't here...our job has many ups and downs, it is inevitable that you really feel the losses despite them not being your own dog....I have always felt like they are my extended family.

Max the Akita is doing so well I can hardly believe it. We are bound to have the odd blimp but that is fine he is learning fast and the other dogs love him.

Then we have the bromance. Only thing is it is most definitely a one sided bromance. Harvey has a new love and he is called Stanley. Not we aren't talking mere lust no we are talking Pepe le Phew style, he just lurves him and just wants to be with him. He is just incessant enough to get what he wants without annoying Stan but you do have to laugh. I am always amazed at the fluid relationships with our guys who have now known each other for so long yet their fickle moods and emotions means you never know who is going to be best buds next. Blitz and Max are definitely unlikely playmates apparently no one told them and they have struck up a friendship and who am I to stand in the way!

Tuesday, 15 November 2011

Izzy has a new friend

Izzy has a regular visitor at a weekend....

I have named him Richard after Richard Hammond as he/ she is small, cute and obsessed with vehicles.

So what is Richard?

A beautiful little Blue Tit! Now my mission is to get a photo of him sitting on my steering wheel.
My van has the mats pulled out, bedding washed and side door left open over the weekend with gate locked, he pops through the gap and spends much of the weekend in and out. Bruce thought he even spent the night in there, maybe he'd like heater on hehe.

Photo by Jeff Morris and not of Richard

Thursday, 10 November 2011


Well the boys and I had our first go at agility together ( the last time I did agility was when Buck was about five over nine years ago!) and we had a great time.

More importantly it made me realise all the extras that go with teaching your dog a sport.

Outside of jumping jumps etc we:

Met dogs on lead no playing or greeting allowed

Some obedience work on a new surface

One boyo was left in the jeep whilst I worked with the other and vice versa

They had to tie up quietly whilst putting equipment out.

Standing or working whilst other dogs are running, jumping or standing right by them.

Be handled by someone new

Of course there was many many distractions and new scary noises like the seesaw banging.

Then with the agility they learnt to jump, one way then another on one side then another, then one after another, then a combo of a few

Walk on a board on the ground before progressing to a dogwalk, stop at the end and wait

Jump on table, wait on table, do different positions on same table then do all the same with me walking around

Go through a tyre raised off ground( pretty hard when you are as tall as Flute and Tips, go through without help and then change direction and on both sides

Go through the weaves ( oh how I laughed and laughed as Flute went through three weave poles and his back legs were still at the first pole.) work out what was required with lure bend in the middle whilst not tripping over the bar on the ground then move backlegs whilst your front legs going a new direction!

Tunnel, walk on a scary movable surface,duck down and walk to other side remembering to not stand up too fast( Flute couldn't get this and just tried to stand up once his head was out, he did amazing although he wanted to take the tunnel home with him I had visions of him being cut out of tunnel, Tips had more sense and only put his front feet in and NO more!)

Long jump Tips trotted delicately across not even knocking them down but soon learn to jump on both side

So that is a lot for a dog to take in isn't it.......You forget what exactly is involved and it does them so much good. Mind I could do with my guys moving their noses away from the floor for more than two seconds!

Wish us look and why don't you try a dog sport yourself?

Tuesday, 8 November 2011

I thought it'd be hard

Well I really did prepare myself for a hard time.

Yet all I have done is enjoyed myself. The unexpected advantage of less freedom out walking with your guys is I felt I had to repay them with new sights, great smells and leg tiring hikes. Which meant we went exploring not having the excuse to just get them tired in the usual way. We tried things just to see what would happen.

With heelwork there is more companionship and with new smells it was a mutual moment so rather than just taking things away from the young lads we were enjoying new things. Even just sitting on a rock next to the rabbit warrens gave ME an idea of how hard it was for Tutey to tear his senses away from his quarry. Tips on the other hand didn't take long and loved trying new things to see what would make the sweetie jar open( free offering)! When Tutey did tear himself away he was so pleasantly surprised he got a cuddle and treat he started his giddy dance!

Today was our first real test, out with the guys part heelwork part freedom from a classical training point of view way way too soon to test them but decision made I was so happy with them. Yes they fluffed once each yet they are still learning and learnt they did.

Tomorrow I am going to play at agility. Not as Petnanny just as Caroline, I occasionally want to leave Nanny behind and just enjoy being an owner with two young dogs so that is what I am going to do. I hope they will enjoy it and as I am not competitive I have only the pressure I put on myself which is quite enough thank you!

Well another week of change, the gorgeous Gus has moved on and is soon to move to Scotland, I wish him all the very best as we all loved the little fella loads. We are continuously turning away work so we weren't in any hurry to fill his pug shaped space then I was taken with a lovely lurcher bitch with doe eyes, long elegant legs and long white socks. Now obviously she doesn't quite fit into a puggy shaped hole but we are flexible and she is a very welcome newby to our Petnanny family. Beaubeau ( my almost granddaughter) is also having some time away until after New Year but she often comes to stay with us so I am pleased to say we will see plenty of her.

Our new van Veronica is doing well although we have had the odd blimp, all being well and unless there is some unfortunate money drain we are still on track for new cages then I have to get my head round the livery.

I do worry a little about not organising a Christmas party for us unfortunately I just have too many commitments around that time and I can't bear making it anymore frantic than it already is. I am a simple girl and to have a catch up walk a coffee and chat would suit me better so maybe we should try and have a meet up in the New Year....or even better go to a local dog show and take in the sights, what fun!

Wednesday, 2 November 2011

I know the problem, I know the solution

Oh I know the problem and even worse I know the solution I just don't wanna do it.

It all started with a catch up with Takoda's mum, surprisingly I was delighted to hear she was no longer working, a job that was just too destructive to be worth any wage packet. Then we got round to me....after a quick yak about gimpy horses and dog talk we started talking about my boys.

She asked me what they were like.

Oh I have no doubts you will love them Julie I replied with a sigh.......Why? Cos they'd make Takoda look like an obedience champion. They are funny, elegant, clumsy and amazingly different. With the check-in distance of a husky.

After a chuckle she said she found it hard to believe and undoubtedly found it funny.

Only it's driving me mad. History repeats itself, I repeat the same old habits and routines that funnily enough didn't produce a spectacularly obedient dog in the past ( excluding Buck who was a treasure).

All I wanna see is a dog doing what dogs are meant to, leap, jump and hunt. Only that isn't really true...I don't want them to hunt everything I only want them to hunt what is allowed. I want them to run, leap and jump when I want them to. See its already getting muddy.

I walk dogs yet I don't want them by my feet unless asked I wanna see them having fun running about playing. Of course they do walk by my side and feet at times and that is ok but not all the time.

So as a pup I revelled in the running, dashing, leaping Flute before me mastering( or not) those long legs. My conscience ( ok Bruce!) told me to tether down that freedom, manage the joy and inhibit that pup. Of course he was right, practising the recall just doesn't cut it. Especially when the recall is actually a pup hurtling in your direction before gooning past you just slow enough for you to leap into his path and invariably stop him in his tracks....

So I know what I want, I know what will likely happen and I know what I have to do to get there.

To watch those expectant faces looking up, them trying so desperately hard to do as I ask just for that taste of freedom and the slow dawning realisation it just isn't going to happen. Heel work. Not heelwork until you are let off but heelwork. Heelwork even when their friends are playing, gooning and having fun. Not even when a bunny provocatively wiggles its white cottonwool tail. Then eventually a moments release and a recall practise until time and relentlessness wins out....I've made it so hard for them.

If I stick it out.

I have to remember them running every day in gay abandonment in the field at the horses...running at Belle and Mila's house running till there legs can't run any more. That is the pay off for my weakness.

The problem is me. The solution is to face the problem, to stop the freedom and work on the response time. The result...depends doesn't it!

Does it make you feel better to hear the truth or do you want something beautiful, I loved that line as soon as I heard it. I often wonder if people only respect those who know it all who never fail. Only in my world no one knows it all and everyone fails at times. Maybe I am a fool for saying it out loud? Who cares I have dogs to walk.....on lead!

Did I mention I love the big eared fools?

Sunday, 30 October 2011

Doris by Justine

The A to Z of Doris

A - Aristocratic

B - Beautiful

C - Cantankerous

D - Diva

E - Elegant

F - Faithful

G - Grande Dame

H - Hilarious

I - Inflexible

J - Jewels - The girl was rarely seen without hers

K - Kissable

L - Luscious

M - Magnificent

N - Nosey

O - Obstinate

P - Prima Donna

Q - Queen Mother (thats what my mam called her)

R - Royalty

S - Stubborn

T - Temperamental

U - Underterred

V - Vivacious

W - Willful

X - Xhibitionist :O)

Y - Yappy - Lady D DID NOT like delivery men

Z - Zippy - She was not

This maybe wasn't what you were expecting, but you know me and Dowis x

Wednesday, 26 October 2011

Lady Dowis Of Pelton

I want to tell you a story, to tell you all about a lovely pug called Dowis or rather Doris. Today however I am just going to share some photos of Lady Dot and leave the talking for another day.

We will miss you Dowis and I hope you join us when we are out and about....I will forever look around to see if you are keeping up and long for that happy face trotting towards me for a body rub.

Family orientated
Canny as owt
Hot stuff
Groovy looker
Groovy mover
Lard arse
Pug tired
Irresistible Fat Doris
Young free and single

So desperately missed the one and only Doris

Sunday, 23 October 2011

Kennel cough vaccine

Just a gentle reminder that all should be due their Kennel cough vaccines if they haven't had them already. My boys are now no longer coughing so they will heading to the vets for theirs that'll be fun two patts, two lurchers and two podencos I think the vet will faint with joy.

All the dogs that were coughing have now recovered...we have three who have started and they are ones that have not been coming out and about so still keep a close eye on our little treasures and I hope this blimp is our share this year!

This time of year we tend to get small cuts on pads etc as their feet are generally softer in the wet so we will keep a close eye on that and we are due a good teeth descaling/ anal gland emptying/ ear plucking/ cleaning session not to forget nail trimming so if we miss yours out please shout....

EllaBella Isabella Appafloosy phil

That is her full title though not her registered name!

Well after a fairly uneventful time with Ella I thought I would update you all.

Five/ six days after returning home she managed to, quite severely damage her forehead which thankfully with lots of stitching and care is now healed. Unfortunately her anxious, panicky behaviour didn't improve and it ended up that every morning she had a new minor injury, was fence walking( or rather galloping) so she was due her blood tests to sign her off from edinburgh so I asked the vet to also scan her ovaries.

Unfortunately or fortunately her scan showed she had a stunted ovary and a very abnormal ovary on the right. Whilst waiting for the blood results( all came back fine for her angiodema and vasculitis indicator) she was put on regulate which I believe is very like the pill in humans.

What a complete turn around. It has taken some getting used to and finally I am not having to visit the barn at midnight to see what she has been getting up to.

So all there is to do now is she needs a further hospital trip to be …….spayed!

I now have the hard decision to make…send her to edinburgh which is £400 more expensive but they know her and her problems well or send her to glasgow and they specialise in this op. My heart says Edinburgh my head Glasgow arghhhh.

I have also made a decision that it is time for the boys to lose their pride and joy christmas time so what a snip happy time I will be having bringing a close to 2011!

Tuesday, 18 October 2011

A thought

Still on the theme of keeping our guys safe:

Vet waiting rooms.

Despite looking up contamination risk, on the internet, at vet waiting rooms I found more about when to take your dog to the vet( when it is ill?), how much it will cost ( a fortune numpty) yet very little about risk of taking you dog TO the vet.

I found lots about reducing the risk in the surgery, for example 'If a patient has to be hospitalised he/she is taken through to our kennels area. We have two open kennels rooms and a small isolation ward with its own air extractor system to prevent any disease contamination.

Each patient is designated a particular kennel or cage and is retained in that unit for the duration of stay. At all times all cleaning and movement protocols are designed to minimise the risk of disease transfer within the hospitalisation wards.'

Only one mentioned their actual waiting room:

Consultation Rooms / Waiting room

The hygiene of the waiting room and consultation rooms are maintained at a very high standard. They are cleaned thoroughly several times a day to minimise cross contamination and are regularly tested to ensure that they remain MRSA free. There is plenty of seating in the waiting room and there’s a separate waiting area for cats to try to minimise stress.

Yet clearly there is a risk

So what can YOU do to reduce the risk.

Only take your dog in once it is your turn, leave them in the car.

Toilet them away from the vet car park, parvo is spread via faeces, many viruses can live for sometime off the host animal so sniffing around waiting for them to toilet can increase risk.

No matter how friendly and lovely don't handle other dogs there, generally people take their dogs to teh vet cos something is wrong.

Allow no nose to nose contact with other animals.

These simple changes can make all the difference!

Sunday, 16 October 2011

A choice that isn't a choice.

A choice that isn't a choice.

I am an honest girl( haha I guess I am not a girl anymore but woman, woman smacks of all grown up with kids to me) although I wasn't always that way. I used to steal stuff from my mam then hide it in my brothers bedroom to get him in trouble. Used to lie when I didn't actually benefit from lying. Then I got wiser, swallowed my pride and learnt that being me is just about good enough.

I also know what is right and wrong, oh how I dislike when I know I am wrong even worse when I have to admit to it!

Control is also something that is definitely part of my personality and why I don't give up the ghost on that one is beyond me, just let it go it ain't gonna happen my brain says yet I still try and hold on to it with both hands.

I can't control how people will take this post, how they will interpret it and how they will twist it so I will just continue. We have a fantastic system that has weaknesses, many many strengths but the odd weakness. I may try to stop them, to annihilate them but it isn't going to happen.

Some of the guys have a cough. It strikes dread in my heart when I hear a dog cough. We always have delicate dogs, dogs who are older, weaker or have conditions that make them susceptible to any ailments. I have one myself Shy, a weak stressed heart yet he is indeed as tough as old boots. This cough was diagnosed as a mild virus so I pondered. Of course I pondered, to cancel dogs causes inconvenience, disruption to all and loss of income for me at a time I can ill afford it.

The alternative is far worse.

So we have a cough and I do the texting, name after name making sure everyone knows. It is so important to let people know, that gives us all power. Yet sometimes that doesn't work both ways.

Because ringing nanny causes inconvenience, maybe it means a change of plan, the guys missing out. Often its the doubt, maybe something isn't really wrong just a blimp, why should they lose out if there isn't really anything wrong. I have made my own mistakes taking a dog in the past cos you think to yourself are you mistaken? Maybe you didn't know, didn't see anything where does that leave everyone?

Where we are now. With a choice, do you leave your dog at home change your plans or do you continue with Nanny. Both choices are right. If delicate of course keep them at home what is a week in the scheme of things. Going out with Nanny is right too. After all your dogs are fit and well, they mix with the same dogs weekly and like children who go to school you can't avoid everything all the time.

After making the decision, feeling the pinch keeping in touch to make sure all is well with the coughing dogs you then find out all is fine, its past by! Pants…..

You do realise what this means don't you? I am going to have to do my paperwork. To draw more and get some put away jobs done. Mumble grumble. The upside, happy manic faces greeting us after their mini break and the realisation that our normal day to day life is mighty fine. Munter munter.

At least it wasn't…..shhhh I will say this only once and very very quietly….at least it wasn't kennel cough. Thank you to all who have their dogs vaccinated against that particular nasty. Well no more stalling time to wake my two up and chuck them outside for a wee. Funny how they sprint out like whippets when it comes to a walk yet they creep out like snails when it is wee in the garden time. This is the one time Shy outspeeds the boys, he's up and waiting at the door.

Night night guys

Bye bye cough!

Timeless Grace

Whilst out walking Flute set off at a gallop, long limbs flowing with timeless grace. Jigging left and right when Tips joined in, running just for runnings sake. Mick our friend watched with a smile on his face.

I couldn't tear my eyes away from them when I heard a comment from Bruce, never to be forgotten:

"Run Forrest Run"

He will pay you know, when will men learn that there is nothing more painful than a woman who's been told her little darling is 'special'. Poor man hasn't learnt this yet.

Wednesday, 12 October 2011


Now I am not shy at being forthright. Normally it is about the dogs, this time it is about humans!

There is one thing we can guarantee in some point in some it will rain. You can also guarantee that on a day that it is raining hard, in the morning, we will be cleaning the van, replacing the bedding and being grumpy because one or more of the dogs refused to toilet in the morning and toiletted in the van instead.

Now I don't mind mess, I don't mind the odd wee or poop as we look after old, new and opinionated but I do mind when not enough effort is made to ensure a dog is empty before they head out in our van. Despite starting the first walk at 8.45am as I knew there would be a few who needed to get out asap it was too late. One flood in the middle, two poops. middle needed emptying of everything mats washed and bedding folded up and only towels left to replace messed bedding, same in one of the back cages.

I know we will be walking them but your dog may not be the first out, we could take them further away so the journey could take longer.

So the easiest way to look at it is if your dog won't go and toilet in the garden on a rainy morning treat it as if you are going to be leaving the dog till lunchtime/ late morning. If necessary take them for a short walk.

There grumpiness over. Please be considerate.

I have said it before I blame it on the weather!

Monday, 10 October 2011

A note from the past

Whilst putting my papers in order ( yeh yeh of course I was) I found a handwritten note that made me chuckle.

I can only presume it was from Glynn( my first Employee) and it said:


1st Walk

Loki Nanci Millie and Tash

Tash hasn't been to the deerpark since she had the incident eating the bread. Think this was well before christmas. As soon as we got near to the place where the bread was - she was a good 100yards ahead looking for it. Whoa what a memory for food!

(People question dogs and their intelligence!)

2nd Walk

Leia Zig Hamish Doodle Norman

Mmmm this was overambitious

1 slightly nervous pup

1blind dog

1 sex crazed pup

1 bitch just coming out of season

1 ok dog

Guess who ended up a maypole!

The upside is that this hasn't happened for ages, makes me appreciate how much of a difference all the training makes, to have well behaved dogs, usually!

(Haha I can picture the kind of walk she had, bet she needed five minutes sit after that walk.)

Wednesday, 5 October 2011



I often worry how people, who check out our page on Facebook, interpret what they see. What if people see something that worries them yet never ask. I love the people who ask or comment, even an unpleasant or heaven forbid abusive comment can be at least tackled, discussed or explained.

So I was asked a question.

' Hi i keep looking at your photos how many dogs have you got ,and where do you go to take them out do they ever fight .'

As for how many dogs we have, we have a few! Our numbers do fluctuate to a degree but generally we stick to a set number, a number we can manage under extreme circumstances. Not when things are going smoothly or well, numbers that mean even when Izzy or Veronica( our vans) need to go to the vet, when we are on one leg or one of our guys are poorly we will manage. Two vans, two nannies and a band of happy dogs. Of course we mustn't forget our knightess in shining supertrooper who comes to our aid when we need her!

Where do we take them? Here, there and everywhere! We are blessed with fabulous walks where we are, we have fields, woods and on occassions the beach. Of course we mustn't forget the important places to walk, not the photo pleasers, or customer pleasers and in fact not the dog pleasers….road walks, training walks and rehab walks. All so vital to what we do, forego one at your peril, it is all about balance isn't it. We are also blessed with a fabulous field, eight acres of meadowland, with orchids, thistles, clover and hedges. Fences that fox the wily escapee whilst we train them.

Now for the interesting part. Do they ever fight? They are dogs which mean the potential for fighting is definitely there. In 13 years there has been less than five fights, only one fight that was between our dogs, the rest have been dogs bowling in on ours( one poor poor dog had been hit by a car and in his frantic state he attacked Swift). Our guys fight? No. Any hurt badly apart from the car accident incident, no.

How?! What people don't realise is we didn't get a group of dogs and throw them altogether and stand back to see what would happen. We have Tash, Sky, Mila, Belle, Jasper, Harv…do you get what I mean. They are our guys, friends and companions, we know what they like, what they loathe. We spend a lot of time getting to know them. I have Nannied many of our dogs for years, some eleven years! Week in week out, come rain or shine, sickness and in health. Even when owners move on and the dogs stay rehomed with us to a trusted new owner.

We differ from many and aim always to be different. For example a Creche. The place is the creche, the focus, the prize, dogs come and dogs go yet the creche stays the same, the people will change and still the place stays the same. You never know who might come, who might go, regulars come and mix with new guys. Of course it works if you get it right but it is a totally different environment to Petnan ( which is a good thing I love the fact there is a dog walker, nanny, creche, kennel for every person/ dog out there). The thing that never changes is the creche. Not the family group.

And I believe we are an extended family. There is a core of familiarity in what we do, our every day dogs always there. Over time these may change but it is in stages, one may go and a new guy comes on board, the excitement like the arrival of a new baby in the family, not always initially accepted but ends up part of the family. So we have a happy band of dogs with a tiny percentage changing. This makes for a comforting environment and a fluid security. So fighting would only likely happen when one guy wants something so badly that it is willing to risk everything. Then of course it would also have to override all our training, training to share, to be patient, to deal with frustration and to understand that all good things come along with a few simple rules…dogs understand this they are social animals they know all about what it takes to be a family member as long as we show and explain to them.

Our rules are something like this:

Don't eat people
Don't eat dogs
Don't eat livestock or pets
Don't bully

Of course there are lots more but that isn't important right now.

So they don't fight because they are trained, they don't fight because they know each other inside and out and very rarely fight because they are dogs!

Darlington dog show:


Sam has managed to upload a horde of photos so will try and find a link for those too.