Spirit came to me as a rescue dog. She was very troubled with behavioural issues, but that hasn’t stopped her from massively improving my life for the better.
I have suffered with depression, anxiety and panic attacks, but training and rehabilitating Spirit has given me something to focus on. It’s forced me to get up every morning on days when I’ve wanted to stay in bed and hide from the world. Together, we have built up a successful dog walking business and now I’ve gained qualifications, I can even help other people with their dogs.
Rehabilitating Spirit has given me something to focus on
As Spirit is getting older and her mobility is failing, we are now doing Mantrailing, which involves training dogs to find missing people. She’s shown me such love and devotion over the years,and I’d be lost without her.
Daisy came to us when we were just retired. We used to have a dog when our children were small and I was at home with them, so we knew how much joy they could bring to our lives.
Taking Daisy out for walks has helped us to meet lots of new people. She gets walked twice daily, which forces us to keep active and enjoy some fresh air every day, even when it’s cold and wet.
Helped us to meet lots of new people
Now our grandchildren are going to universities across the country and our children are busy working, we don’t see so much of them. Daisy fills this void and gives us lots of cuddles and love. She loves riding in cars, especially our Morris 1000! She also makes us laugh endlessly. It’s hard to imagine how we managed for all those years without a dog.
My wife and I were approaching our fifties and had decided it was the perfect time to get a dog. After a lot of research, we found Rocco. He looks like a Labrador who has the white spots of a Springer plus the tail of a Husky – and the energy of all three!
Bump the chair with his bottom
We’ve become a lot more mobile thanks to Rocco and his antics. If I’m relaxing in my recliner and he wants to play, Rocco will walk past and bump the chair with his bottom. He won’t stop until I give him attention! If, for some reason, we haven’t given Rocco enough of a walk, he’ll start going crazy at about 10pm to let us know he needs some more exercise. He’ll even grab his toys and dismantle his bed to get your attention.
Our fifties are full of activity and adventure, and it’s all thanks to Rocco.
Bryce is my best friend. He is profoundly deaf like me and so we share a very special bond – he even seems to understand all the signs I’ve taught him.
My dog has been a fantastic companion
He has a crazy sense of humour, and snores so loudly he gets a fright and wakes himself up! My dog has been a fantastic companion to me, especially recently. As everyone’s been wearing masks, it’s meant I can’t lipread and this has left me feeling more isolated than usual. Staying at home and relaxing in the garden with my furry companion has given me the boost I need to get through.
Both my husband and I retired and decided we would get our longed-for fur baby now that we had time. Molly is an absolute joy. She loves everyone. Her best times are when any of our 13 grandchildren are around. She is in heaven playing games and giving lots of cuddles.
She is in heaven playing games and giving lots of cuddles
She is so loving and generates happiness! She loves being outdoors and greets everyone and everything with gusto. Her favourite outdoor time is chasing her ball. She always gets attention because she is so friendly.
Many people say she cheers them up as she so obviously loves life and loves being cuddled. She is very mischievous and funny and always keeps us on our toes. I never thought having a dog would be this rewarding.
I met Duke when I was on holiday in Zante, visiting the dog shelter we often volunteer at. The day we arrived, a little dog was running around inside, clearly terrified. We had to use our ham sandwiches to try and coax him towards us! Luckily it worked, and we got him back into his pen. We kept an eye on him for the next week or so, but sadly, on the last day of our trip, he became ill and had to go to the vets. We sat with him right up until we had to get on our plane home – it was heartbreaking.
The vet kept us up-to-date and a week later, Duke had recovered and was allowed back to the shelter. By this point, we had decided to adopt him and bring him home to live with us when he was ready.
Duke is now a solid part of the family
He arrived three months later, extremely nervous and unsure of everything. We took him to meet my parents’ three other dogs, who are also from Greece. He was nervous at first but he did well, soon becoming best friends with one of the dogs Ella. Ten months on and Duke is now a solid part of the family. Since I work from home, he’s had to learn how to deal with my constant company. He likes to come and poke his head into the camera while I’m on a call to say hello to my colleagues!
He still has his moments and he's a very skittish boy, but once he's approved you (he does this by sticking his nose in your face and licking your ears), he’ll happily sit on top of you and wait for a tummy rub!
Like all the other rescues we work with, Duke has his 'quirks', some of which will stay with him forever and some that will disappear the more confident he gets. It’s lovely to watch his character grow as he gets more comfortable around us. He’s come such a long way already, both physically and mentally, and I can’t wait to watch him blossom even more.