Anya is a sensitive, loving and intelligent Golden Cocker Spaniel who has been a part of our lives for five years now. She gives every family member their own special attention, but as my son’s hearing support dog, she’s also his best friend. Every morning she starts her day by jumping on his bed, trying to dig him out from under his duvet!
Offering more than just hearing support, Anya also provides him with unconditional love and friendship. She calls him down for dinner by entering his room, nudging him with her wet, black nose and then leading him downstairs. It’s very comforting to know that she’s always there to protect him, especially when he’s asleep at night. If the smoke alarm goes off, for example, she can wake him up and alert him to the danger.
She’ll be there to protect him
Anya loves her walks and, as a typical Spaniel, she loves to sniff out fox poo! Her favourite human foods are sausages and cheese – if you ever eat them in front of her, she always looks at you with the biggest brown eyes, trying to get you to share them. She also adores playing frisbee, always running after it and bringing it back for us to throw again.
She’s our first dog, and every day we are thankful for the love and support she gives us. Suffering from hearing loss can sometimes mean that people shy away from you, but with Anya around people are actually drawn to us.
When I look at her asleep on the sofa, I understand why dogs like to sleep a lot – it’s because when they’re awake, they devote all of their energy to looking after their humans.
Patsy was two when we adopted her from Bath Cats and Dogs Home. She had just had a litter of pups and was handed in. She was tiny, seemed so scared and frail, and we were nervous taking her home. We were so wrong! She walked in, took the bone out of our other dog Eddie’s mouth, pushed him out of his bed and made herself at home. She treated Eddie like her puppy and still does.
Over the months it was clear that Patsy hadn't had the best start. House training was a nightmare, she couldn't walk far as she had little muscle and very cracked pads, she was also scared of walking sticks, but loved people. Six years on and she is so different. She’s much more confident and a local favourite! Patsy loves people and loves a cuddle, and everyone is willing to oblige.
She is our family and we love her
She loves Eddie and still cleans his face every day – even though we don’t think he actually likes it he still lets her do it. Some days she won’t walk, some days it’s like walking a bag of potatoes, but as soon as she’s in the woods, she comes alive! Exploring, chasing squirrels and having fun. And, although she’s not built for swimming (her body to leg ratio is not great) she loves the water and will always paddle in streams and loves a beach trip.
She is getting old, has terrible wind, snores like a steam train and is stubborn like I’ve never known before, but she is our family and we love her. She’s great for a cuddle on the sofa and the comedy value is priceless.
Shylow is the most ‘human’ dog! He has guided my husband through a very dark period of depression and listens to his every word. He sat beside my husband, tilting his head, listening to every word and rambles back. Shylow understands everything we say to him and my husband and the dog share their own howling conversations. Shylow is our motivation to get up and get outdoors.
Watching him live his best life with us has enabled us to live ours with him
He brings toys to play with and tells us exactly what he wants. Shylow enjoys the finer things in life like freshly cooked sausages – or a packet of beef hula hoops! He is very well-behaved, and watching him live his best life with us has enabled us to live ours with him.
Little Ruaridh came into our lives only one month ago but the impact he has made has been substantial. Although extremely hard work, he has already made our little family happier and healthier in every way. From getting us up bright and early (5am!) to getting us out in the fresh air more – he really has improved our wellbeing.
He really has improved our wellbeing
He’s the greediest dog and the loves to explore the world through his mouth. The strangest thing he enjoyed eating was the binmen’s gloves after the binman tried to give him a cuddle.
As he grows, so do Ruaridh’s eyebrows and his long golden hair often glimmers in the sun. We love our little bundle of fluff and would love to spend some quality time away with him on his first holiday.
When I first found Kurtis, I was struggling through a very difficult time in my life. I was depressed and battling anxiety, which left me spiralling and unsure what to do.
Little Terrier with the biggest heart
My boyfriend and I had moved into our first home together, with a garden perfect for a small dog. Having grown up with dogs around me, it felt incomplete without one. After a lengthy search for the right breed and a rigorous adoption process, we drove the 11-hour round-trip to collect Kurtis from his former owners who no longer wanted him. We worked hard on his confidence, obedience and toilet training, and fell in love with his personality ¬¬– a cheeky, lovely little Terrier with the biggest heart.
Kurtis kept me company on my long commute and became an amazing office dog. When my anxiety attacks come along, he sits on my lap and licks my face, so that I have to calm down and cuddle him. He gives me a reason to get out and about and get fresh air so that I don’t wallow.
Kurtis loves to cuddle on the sofa, but he also loves to dance. He will stand on his hind legs and tap dance for attention, and trot around with his oinky toy pig! He loves to sunbathe and will sit right on your head if it happens to be in a sunny spot. We take him on all of our adventures, and he checks out dog-friendly spots wherever we go!
Lucy is the happiest, cheekiest little pup there is. Although she has arthritis, she still loves to play and always keeps a teddy bear close by. In her prime she loved to chase cats around the garden, but now she’s older she enjoys just lying down and waiting for them to approach her. She’s also obsessed with cold things, and will sit and growl at her bowl of water if it reaches room temperature until we replace it!
Lucy is also the neighborhood watchdog
Initially, my son was uninterested in her, but now they’re best buddies. He gives any of his leftover food to her and she’s always more than willing to eat it. Lucy is also the neighborhood watchdog. Every night, she sits outside just watching the world go by and doing her part to protect us all.