WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW AS A NEW PUPPY MUMMY

Sausage dog on a boardwalk.

Dogs are like children!

When you get a pet, your life changes. It’s kind of like having a baby but instead you are a new puppy Mummy.  Sure, you aren’t awake all through the night, and you don’t have to take this little one everywhere with you, but when you have a puppy, there is some work involved. And it’s handy to know both what you should expect and what you can do to make things easier on yourself. Taking care of a dog is a lot of work. But it’s also a lot of fun too. As long as you know what you do and you’re focusing on what keeping your puppy happy, you’re on track. So, to help you with that, let’s take a look at five things you need to know when you become a new puppy Mummy!

Training

First of all, there’s training. And you will want to start this right away. Because not only do you have toilet training to do, but there’s also the idea of working on training their behavior too. Now, with toilet training, they will get there. Yes, there will be accidents, but you need to let things go and just persist. But, when it comes to behaviour training, you may want to take them to classes for this if you’re not too sure what you should do.

Products

Now, when it comes to the products you need, you need to make sure that they will be happy and comfortable in your home. Whether you want to go for luxury pet products or something budget, it doesn’t matter. Whatever suits you best is fine. But you will need a bed for them, bowls for food and water, grooming products, toys, and a lead too. These are the basics, but you could also look to get treats or other fun extras for them too.

puppy laying on a blanket.

Puppy Snuggles

Care

From here, you will then want to make sure that they are cared for and that their health is perfect. You will need to find a vet, like www.easipetcare.com, near to you that you like and trust. Make sure that they get their initial checkups and that they have yearly check-ups from then on in, just to keep them healthy.

Food

You should also try to get the balance right between feeding your pup enough and not over feeding them too. This is where your vet can help, as they can make sure that they are always in a healthy weight range.

Exercise

But then also, it’s really important for you to be thinking about what kind of exercise your dog needs. Because they all need to be walked, yet some breeds will need more and others will need less. You can do a ton of research of this online, using sites like www.rover.com, to find out what will work best. But you can also speak to your vet and get their personal recommendations too. And then, you should start to get a sense of the kind of exercise that they need personally too.

 

 

WHY PET INSURANCE IS MY TOP PRIORITY

 

My boy Buddy!

After he’d been a bit under the weather for a few days, I instinctively knew there was something wrong with my dog Buddy. There were of course more indelicate clues. He was constantly being sick from one end and the other end wasn’t ‘as normal’ either.

My usual tried and tested  healing remedy of chicken and rice wasn’t doing the trick, so off we went to the vet to get him sorted out, safe in the knowledge that my Pet Insurance would cover the cost of any treatment and medication.

I was expecting a phone call at around 4.00pm to arrange collection and presumed I’d be coming home with my dog and the usual expensive box of Antibiotics.

(more…)

THE DOG THAT DIDN’T COME BACK!

What could be nicer on a sunny afternoon in Spain, than going for a walk with your neighbour, and her dog?  Well, as it turned out, I can think of a few things that would have been preferable.

I was missing Buddy, as we’d been apart for nearly two weeks, while he waited for his coach trip to Spain to join me, so this seemed like a good way for me to get back into the dog walking spirit of things.

My friends dog is called Paddy, and he is more than a 10p mix up of Collie, Staffy, Labrador and I reckon  a Great Dane is lurking in his gene pool somewhere too as he’s nearly bigger than his owner, but then to be honest that’s not difficult either.

PADDY

PADDY

Paddy is  a lovely, very lively boy, and we’ve reached an understanding whereby I completely ignore him, till he stops jumping up and trying to kiss my nose every time I walk in the door. It’s a battle of wills, but I’m winning.  (more…)

THE POWER OF A LOST DOG.

By the power of Facebook, you can buy and sell silk purse or a sows ear, share the highs and lows of your life, and announce new arrivals and sad departures to as many ‘friends’ as you care to imagine.

Our local community pages tell us about cancelled trains, punctures on the community bus and bring us important updates about incidents and accidents around the local roads.

But over the past couple of weeks, the main focus for a small village in Essex, has been on Lily the German Shepherd who having been rescued from an unsuitable owners, then made a dash for it from her new forever home, and found herself terribly lost and scared.

To begin with, the notification on the newsfeed was fairly normal.  Dog lost. Keep your eyes open, brief description and I’m sure like me, most people expected a happy ending a few hours later.       Lily 3 (2)

But what followed, was I believe, an exceptional example of how a dog loving community rallied round, when it became clear that Lily was going to be very elusive.

At first, people began to do as they were asked, keeping their eyes open while on their own dog walk, and taking spare lead and a few treats just in case they could catch her.

Sightings were posted regularly, and over the next few days, a Facebook page was created for Lily, where people said where they had last seen her and at what time.

But when Lily had been out in some pretty cold overnight temperatures, things gathered pace, and people were now organising themselves into groups to search at pre-arranged times.

A specialist trapping team were consulted and they were happy to help.

Lily meanwhile continued to avoid being caught. She was by this time criss crossing major roads, but being such a young dog, she was not even approachable and every time people got close to her, she just bolted. So frustrating for everyone.

A plan was suggested to place food stations at various points, then, to decrease the distance between them, in an effort to encourage Lily to stick to one particular area, and eventually to set some kind of trap for her.

However, the RSPCA were unwilling to lend a trap, and nobody else had one readily available.

What followed was really quite amazing.  As the community began to discuss the need for a trap, people started collectively offering money to buy one, whilst some offered to fund the purchase outright. Donations were taken into one of the village shops.  People were incredibly generous not only with their time, but with their hard earned cash too.

As groups met up on a daily basis to search for Lily, friendships were formed, acquaintances were renewed, and there was an incredible sense of purpose shown, and support given to Lily’s owners, who before Lily disappeared, were complete strangers.

People sat in fields with flasks of hot tea, lit BBQ’s in an attempt to tempt her towards the smell. A major Essex road was held to ransom while people drove up and down at 40mph trying to spot her, and lorries were regularly stopped dead if she ever poked her head over a ditch.

The newly purchased trap was manned all the time ‘just in case’.

Sadly, there was no happy ending for Lily. After nearly two weeks evading the kind people who were actually trying to save her, she ventured onto the railway line and…….well, it all happened very quickly.

But there are plans for people that were complete strangers ‘before Lily’ to meet up and have drinks to celebrate Lily’s short but eventful life.

Her legacy has forged new friendships and probably renewed the communities faith in the generosity of others, and their willingness to give their time to help someone in distress, not to mention those traps which are there just waiting in her memory, to help the next ‘lost dog’.

GIVE A MAN A DOG

If I had my way, I’d make it compulsory for all healthy, older people, who live alone, to be given an all-expenses paid, rescue dog.

Loneliness is a terrible thing, it’s so isolating,  and studies seem to show, shortens the life of those that endure it, after all, if you are not seeing anyone, or talking to anyone, what point is there in carrying on.

So many older people, would benefit from having a dog to look after. It would give them a purpose, a reason to go for that beneficial walk, a chance to stop and chat to other dog owners, and to generally get out of the house for a couple of hours every day.

When you are out with your dog, people exchange pleasantries, initially about the weather, then as time goes on, and you do a regular route at a regular time, the conversations get longer, and people begin to recognise each other, and even if they don’t know the name of the dog owner, they usually know the name of the dog.

Rocky’s Dad, Bonnies Mum.

No dog owner is really fussed about their own name being known; you recognise people by their dog, not really by their face!

Buddy and I have met so many lovely folk while we’ve been out walking both in Spain, and here in the UK.

Park 15.11.12 005

In Spain I found a little park just at the bottom of my street, and spent many enjoyable hours with people who tried in vain to teach me some Spanish, and who in turn were eager to point to things and ask me ‘English is?’

Coming straight out of a Spanish dog rescue I had no idea if Buddy would be friendly towards all other dogs, or if there was a breed or colour he would grumble at, but whilst at first he was a bit overwhelmed, he soon found his feet ( or paws ) and  learnt the ‘chase me’ game pretty quick too.

Later, when we returned to the UK, he’d earned his good dog stripes and I knew that although he was quite lively, he was a lover of dogs, not a fighter of dogs.

Now we have an easy daily routine of a park walk and play in the mornings with George the deaf dog, Dave the Spaniel, Max the Cockapoo, Remy the Terrier, Pippa the Springer, and Dudley the Tibetan Terrier, who is my daughter’s dog.  To name but a few.

We all meet about 9.30 in the park, and it’s like a dog fest.

Everyone stands around chatting, friendships are forged both human and canine.  New puppies are coaxed and cuddled, new owners welcomed and introduced to everyone.

Some days there can be up to 15 dogs, some days, maybe 4 or 5, but the main thing is its sociable.  An older person with a rescue dog, is just as welcome as a teenager with a new bundle of fluff on its first outing.   DOG SMALL WHITE

Just think how much an older person, who lives alone would enjoy and benefit from that, not to mention the fact that they could provide a loving home for all those dogs that Paul O’Grady tortures us with every week on the telly.

Every week it makes me cry. Sniff.

Get a campaign going Mr O’Grady, you’ve got the clout, so that a not so active dog could be matched with a man who just needs a bit of gentle exercise.

Greyhounds are a perfect choice, they are major sofa surfers, contrary to popular belief. Don’t think that just because they’ve spent their life racing round a track after a pretend rabbit that they need to race for miles round the countryside.

NO, they are the laziest dogs ever.     DOG GREYHOUND

How about a nice little rescued Yorkie for a lady who maybe would prefer a small lap dog to keep her company, imagine all those other nice ladies she might stop and chat to whilst she’s out for a stroll in the sunshine with her dog.

It’s not rocket science.  There are thousands of lonely dogs in kennels, there are thousands of lonely people in houses.

They could save each other from an early grave.

To read about Buddy’s latest ‘faux pas’ please go and ‘like’ him on Facebook at

https://www.facebook.com/pages/BUDDY-El-Perro-Espanol/1553717728218228?ref=hl

 

IT’S ALL ABOUT THE BOY!

A personal blog is supposedly about your personal life. Snippets and stories that you want to share with your readers, to amuse them, to inform them, sometimes even to challenge them.

All of which I try to do. Often.

But today, as I’m sitting writing this little missive, a pair of gorgeous, big brown eyes are staring at me from the opposite sofa, where ‘my boy’ is snuggled on a big soft throw, with his head resting on an even bigger soft cushion.  He’s pretending to be asleep, but I can see the light reflected in his eyes, and he doesn’t fool me.

It looks something like this ……….. my camera 037

Some of my readers will already know Buddy’s story, but for my new reader (!) a recap.

In early May 2011, I found myself volunteering at a dog shelter on the Costa Dorada in Spain.

On the first day I went there, I was expecting to pat a few hairy heads, top up some water bowls and probably get in the way.  Nothing prepared me for the 100 or so dogs that ran to greet me, nor the other 200 that were housed in blocks of many secure enclosures.

Animal shelter entrance.

And there he was. Black Dog as he was simply called masquerading as a questionable Catalan Sheep Dog.

Whilst many of the other dogs were barking and frantically jumping up at the enclosure, Black Dog just laid quietly, with his neck and back legs draped over the apex of two beaten up old wooden kennels, and his tummy just resting in the gap, watching every man and his dog go by.

I was told that his chances of being rehomed in Spain were slim. The Spanish aren’t drawn to black hairy dogs, they prefer small white, apartment living dogs.  The future looked a bit bleak for Black Dog

But then, just as now, he watched my every move whilst acting really cool and uninterested, whilst all the dogs around him were literally barking mad.

My lifestyle at the time meant that NO reputable dog charity in the UK would approve me a suitable dog adopter, but I knew within the first few days of working at the dog shelter, that Black Dog was coming home with me.

The weeks went by, and June arrived, it was beyond hot, and let me tell you the collective poo of 200 dogs in searing heat is not to be sniffed at.

It was time to lay claim to my dog, and run for the cool hills.

On June 28th 2011, Black Dog was tied to the bumper of my car, and very unceremoniously micro-chipped and vaccinated. I paid my 100e rehoming fee. He jumped into the boot, and with the very warm wind in his fur I drove him away.

Despite very limited knowledge of his background, BUDDY has turned out to be a joy to own. I’ve dragged him from here to there and back again.

Buddy for Bubble

Wherever I lay my hat, that’s his home, and today from our home, it’s all about the boy, my boy, BUDDY!

You can also read about Buddy here:

https://www.facebook.com/pages/BUDDY-El-Perro-Espanol/1553717728218228?ref=hl

Please come and ‘like’ his page!