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British Dogs

Meet Ashton

Maria’s only had Ashton for a year, but he’s already made her life so much better with his sweet personality

The day I’m writing this is Ashton’s first birthday. Over the last year, he’s brought pure joy into my life. He’s a playful, happy little dog, who simply won’t allow you to be sad around him.

He likes to sit on top of the sofa cushions like a cat and will go anywhere that’s warm. He loves to be snuggled under blankets and will make his own ‘nest’ out of any soft material he can curl up in.

He has a sister, and he always barks at her until she plays with him – but he isn’t too pleased when she barks back! He also gets major ‘FOMO’, so if there’s even a small chance of something exciting happening, he needs to be there – even if you’re just going to make a cup of tea.

Most importantly, he’s helped me stay positive when I’ve struggled to get up in the mornings. Knowing this bundle of joy relies on me and loves me unconditionally has helped me get up on many days when I didn’t even want to move. Ashton is my best friend.

He simply won’t allow you to be sad around him

Meet Bess

Mell is so proud of how much Bess has grown in confidence

Bess was a rescue from the Border Collie Trust. She is very quietand a little timid, but she’s still adored by everyone who meets her. When she first arrived, she was afraid of everything, and although she still doesn’t like fireworks or loud noises, she’s come out of her shell a lot. Now she even allows strangers to strokeher, which is a good thing because everyone who meets her can’t seem to stay away!

She’s come out of her shell

Her favorite pastime is playing with plastic flower pots and racing around the garden.She is such a great dog and has helped us all to get through lockdown with her gentlenessand patience.

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Meet McLaren

Cheeky chappy McLaren helps his owner Vicky to keep her independence, and always puts a smile on her face

McLaren is a Canine Partner Assistance Dog, so not only is he a great companion, but he is a brilliant help to me in my everyday life. He picks up dropped items, lends me a paw when I’m doing the washing and even gives me more confidence when we go out and about.

He’s such a cheeky chap

Everyone loves McLaren, he’s such a great ice breaker. He’s a cheeky chap, and loves to clown around and make you laugh. He also has a penchant for gloves and socks, and will happily steal them and parade round the house, hoping to be bribed with treats for their safe return!

I’ve been shielding since March and I haven’t been able to go out to the shops or see friends or family, so having McLaren with me has had a huge positive impact on my wellbeing. He cheers me up if I’m feeling lonely, is always up for an adventure and loves playing games of hide and seek or dancing to music. He is my hero.

Meet Millie

Dog-obsessed Danielle feels complete now that Millie is in her life.

I've grown up with dogs all my life. I used to have two German Shepherds, Sabre and Levi. By the time we sadly lost my two best friends, I was 21 and was just beginning my life after university. I met my partner and moved to Manchester for work. Since the beginning of our relationship, I made it clear that I wanted to have a dog in my life again. Sometimes, it felt like it might not happen for another 10 years with work and so on.

But everything fell into place in November 2019 when we brought Millie, our Labradoodle, into our lives. My boyfriend has never had a dog before and Millie has 100% stolen his heart and made him as dog-obsessed as me.

Having Millie in our life is like a hole has been filled

She's the most loving and chilled out puppy I have ever known. I was ready for the madness and chaos that comes with a puppy but we never really had it. She has many quirks, including sitting upright on the sofa like a human being. She loves to snuggle up into your arms and she's the perfect size to do so.

She is tennis ball-mad, and makes us take her out at 8 pm on the dot for her tennis ball chasing hour! Morning walks are reserved for a gentle stroll through our local woods.

Having Millie in our life is like a hole has been filled. Taking her for her morning walk gives me such a feeling of calm before the day ahead. It's our special time when nothing else in the world matters.

Our life now revolves around planning adventures with Millie and doing everything we can to give her the best years of her life. We often ask ourselves what we used to do before we had a dog. Watching her grown, learn and blossom into an adult dog fills us with so much pride – we can kind of see why people might have children!

Meet Rocky

Whether he’s making her laugh or looking after her, Rocky is an important part of Shirley’s life

My husband and I used to manage a private residence. It was a Tudor farmhouse set in almost 30 acres. We started working there when our dog Rocky was just 12 weeks old. At first, he would chase birds, squirrels and bunnies around the lawns, but on one particular occasion he actually followed a rabbit all the way into its warren. There I was, out in the pouring rain searching all over for him, only to see him clamber out of the rabbit hole like something out of Alice in Wonderland!

Rocky lives for adventure. He used to make it his mission to save the cockerels from foxes, who he would chase away from his feathery friends. Once, he even managed to pry a bird straight out of a fox’s mouth.

Rocky lives for adventure

Of course, Rocky is also extremely protective of his human companions. Last year, we were awoken really early one cold February morning by the sound of Rocky barking. We woke up and told him to stop, but within a moment he was at it again. Something didn’t feel right as this really wasn’t like him, so my husband got up and looked through the curtains. He realised the barn door was ajar, so I grabbed the phone and rang the police – it turns out we had intruders. Without Rocky to wake us up, who knows what could have happened that night.

In March we were made redundant and had to move back to our property in Wales. Losing my job and my ties to the cottage has been really hard for me, but thankfully, I have Rocky to keep me company and take me on long, relaxing walks along the beachfront.

Meet Arora

Both Kim and her dog Arora have faced personal difficulties in their lives, but now they’re getting through them together

My female Greyhound, Arora, is my hero. We've had her for seven months now, and she's such a nervous dog. She’s getting there one step at a time, as my family and I are taking baby steps with her each day. She’s also been my rock. I have health issues, and very bad anxiety and depression too, so she's like my therapy dog. We both support and help each other day by day.

I got her from Birmingham RSPCA. As soon as I read her profile story and saw her face in the photos, I instantly cried and shouted out to both my parents: ‘That's my new dog!’. She's such a sweetheart – so loving and very adorable. She doesn't like dogs or cats, but she loves humans.

We both support and help each other day by day

I've taught her to pick her blankets up and move them from her bedroom to the living room. Her favourite toy is her teddy called Teddy. She dislikes balls, as she’s not a toy dog, and she's scared of flies for some reason. Sometimes Arora speaks – she can say ‘mom’ and her name! She loves having her photo taken and poses like a model. She hates spiders, and if she sees one, she stamps on it with her foot. She also won’t eat any dog food, so she only eats fresh fish and tinned fish.

Getting Arora was the best thing I ever did. She's my first ever dog and the best part of my life by far. She's also a huge part of my family. I haven't got any human children, but Arora is my baby and I love her to bits! She gets everything she wants, and she deserves it as a rescue dog.

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