Adopting a puppy | Days 4 – 7

First of all I want to apologise for missing so many days and compiling them all into one. Amber has been ill this week so we’ve been working on getting her better. She’s completely fine now after a course of antibiotics!

Day 4:

I introduced Teddy to the bath on day 4. There was no water in it, I was just getting him used to the bath and the surroundings in the bathroom. He was a little nervous at first but soon got excited and explored not only the bathroom but every room upstairs that he could get into. He’s now had his first proper bath which I’ll update you on later in the post.

Day 5:

This was a pretty boring day but Ted did learn how to play fetch! I’m very pleased with this as it’s something Amber was never interested in. We’re been playing none stop ever since.

This was also the first day that Ted wagged his tail at me when I came and got him up in the morning which was lovely!

Day 6:

Day 6 was a very busy day. In the morning Ted and I attended Puppy Hour at our local Pets Corner then in the afternoon I took him for his first walk along with Amber and her Shih Tzu friend Brian.

He had a great time but is still quite unsure of his lead when it pulls on him so that’s something we’re working on at the moment!

Day 7:

Another day, another walk! I took Ted and Amber along to a local Courtney park completely forgetting that it was a Sunday. The park was packed full of people and dogs which was quite overwhelming for Ted but he did make lots of friends so he was happy enough.

Both dogs were a complete mess after their walk so Ted had his first bath, with Amber there too for moral support (And because she had rolled in poo). He was very well behaved and had no objection to being brushed afterwards, however as Amber doesn’t like the brush I got shouted at by her for brushing Ted!

That’s it from us for now. I’ll try to update you all more regularly this week now Amber is back to her usual, greedy self.

Love Ellie, Amber & Ted

Adopting a puppy | Day 2 & 3

Day 2 was a bit slow so I decided to wait and merge today and yesterday together.

We didn’t do much yesterday in the way of doggy activities but Ted is definitely coming into his own around the house. He’s far more confident and his little tail has come out from between his legs! He’s even wagged it at Amber a few times… she’s wasn’t impressed and is still ignoring him but he’s trying his best to make friends. (We are giving Amber plenty of alone time whenever she wants it to make sure she feels as comfortable as possible)

I also took him to register at the vets and he had a little check up. I am pleased to say he got a perfect bill of health. He’s still very nervous around people so didn’t enjoy himself very much but he was very good and didn’t make a fuss at all.

We then popped into Pets Corner as there is one next to our vets to ask about puppy socialisation. They have a puppy hour every Saturday so we have signed up and will hopefully be attending on Saturday depending on how Ted’s confidence is coming along. He’s much better with dogs than he is with people as that’s all he’s ever known.

Today we had some house visitors which was a first for Ted. He did much better than I expected him to and even went into the same room as them so see what was going on but wouldn’t get too close. He also encountered the vacuum today and wasn’t phased by the noise at all which is very positive. Amber is 7 and is still terrified of the hoover!

I also tried Ted on a lead today. He’s been on a lead before but only at the vets as a ‘just incase’. He’s never actually walked on one. He’s very unsure about the feeling of the lead on his collar and harness so this is something we are going to have to work on very slowly. I’ve got a puppy lead that I am going to gradually introduce him to, first by letting him drag it around in a safe area where there is nothing it can catch on. This is to get him used to the feeling of wearing it before I start picking up the end.

Ted is still getting on very well with his toilet training and hasn’t had any accidents yet today! I’m very impressed.

We can’t wait to see what tomorrow has in store for us.

Love Ellie, Amber & Ted x

Adopting a puppy | Day 1

Meet our new addition, Ted(dy) the 13 week old Poodle cross.

Yesterday I made the 6 hour round trip from Cheshire to Wiltshire to pick up this very special little pup. He was rescued from puppy farm at 9 weeks old and has been in foster care ever since. I found him through Many Tears Animal Rescue who have a centre based in Wales but have dogs in foster homes all over the country.

I’ve wanted to get back into blogging for a while and I think sharing Ted’s journey is the perfect way to do that. Today was his first full day with us and it was a day full of firsts!

Ted slept in his crate last night and was an absolute angel. He had been sleeping in a crate at his foster home so i’m sure that definitely helped! He didn’t make a sound and had no accidents overnight which I was pretty amazed by. He’s doing very well in terms of toilet training and has only had 1 accident today… I was expecting a lot more.

He also took his first trip to Pets At Home today. He’s quite nervous on a lead so we went to pick up a harness to see if that would help… he still looks pretty terrified at this stage but having never worn a harness before he did very well trying it on. He even had a little sniff around down on the floor in the store.

In the afternoon he decided to venture over to Amber’s toy box… which she is very willing to share as she doesn’t use them at all. You can really see him coming out of his shell when he’s playing with his toys. He even took one over near Amber to see if she would play… she just ignored him. She’s still coming to terms with the fact she now has a little brother and she’s not the happiest dog in the world at the moment. After being an only dog for 7 years it’s going to be a big adjustment for her.

Ted also experienced carrot for the first time today and didn’t quite understand that it was a snack. He had a great time playing with it though!

Amber has actually been doing better than I expected her to. She’s let him sniff her a couple of times without running away and even let him sit near her at one point today. He’s desperate to be her best friend!

Tomorrow we’re going to try a little on lead walk around the garden to get him used to it and i’m also going to book him into puppy class. I can already tell he’s going to be a cheeky one.

That’s all for today, see you tomorrow!

Ellie, Amber & Ted x

Formby Lifeboat Road Beach

We’ve been having some lovely weather recently and according to the forecast it’s only going to get better! To celebrate I decided to take Amber on a trip to Formby beach.

We have visited Formby a few times before and have always parked in their Victoria Road car park. If I’m totally honest I thought that was the only car park they had until our recent visit. On our way to our usual car park we drove past a sign for ‘Lifeboat Road Beach’ and when we hit traffic we decided to turn around and follow this sign to see where it took us!

When we arrived we discovered a whole other car park (Lifeboat Road car park) and another part of the beach which I had no idea existed. I’m sure it’s common knowledge but it came as a surprise to me.

On a hot day, Formby is usually packed but this ‘new’ part of the beach we found seemed to be a lot quiter which is far more enjoyable when you’re with an attention seeking dog who needs cuddles from everyone who looks at her. She’s a nightmare on a busy beach!

When we arrived on the beach Amber ran straight down to the water. Yes you did read that right… Amber RUNS on the beach! She’ll even make friends and actually play with them.

She spent a lot of time playing with a lovely little Cockapoo. Until his owner got some sausages out, she spent her time after that begging for those instead.

After a lot of fun playing in the water and being fed sausages it was time to leave. Being the mad dog she is, Amber likes to try and dry herself off on the sand… it never ends well.

She’s never impressed when she gets told off for this either. Just look at that face – she’s fuming!

Dog beach hack: If, like me are an awful dog mother and forget to bring a bowl out of the car, kill two birds with one stone! Get yourself an ice cream then use the empty tub as a make shift bowl.

After a lovely day on the beach we headed home for what Amber hoped would be a nap, but in reality was a bath. We’re definitely going to be exploring some more new beaches over the summer. It makes for a great day out!

Love,

Ellie and Amber x

Dog Fest 2018 | Team North

Dog Fest is something that Amber and I have marked off in our calendar every year the minute the tickets are released! I have to admit, it’s probably my favourite dog event of the year (No one tell Crufts). We have attended for the past three years now and each year it seems to get better and better.

They have moved the location of Dog Fest north this year from Arley Hall Gardens to Cholmondeley Castle Gardens and although Arley Hall is much closer to us, moving the event definitely made the experience of getting there far more pleasant. With an event this big, queueing to get in is expected but last year I was sat in the car for over an hour, driving to a location that is only 10 minutes down the road! This year our journey time was also an hour, however Cholmondeley Castle is 45 minutes away from where I live, so it’s safe to say they have improved their traffic management.

Upon arrival we went to visit Amber’s favourite people, the Guru Pet Food team!

Whilst we were at the Guru stand we picked up some of their new ‘Reel’ Fishskin treats as well as a couple of Trip Bones and Amber’s personal favourite, a pack of their venison sausages.

Once we had done some treat shopping we ventured off to find the Equafleece stand. For a while now I have been wanting to get my hands on a mulberry coloured fleece for Amber and they finally had it in her size. So thats three she has now… someone stop me!!

We then visited the Soopa stand. Amber tested out all of their treat favours before deciding on the Carrot and Pumpkin dental sticks. Soopa treats are great as their chews are 100% natural and produced to human grade standard. Amber is loving them!

Another product I’ve been meaning to get for a while now is a Pit Pat fitness tracker. This will definitely help me manage Amber’s exercise levels and hopefully enable her to lose some weight. We had a wonderful time hanging out in the VIP are at their stand eating treats and drinking Prosecco!

The Pit Pat stand was just across from the Hound Hangout where we spotted our Instagram friends @flossie_and_family so we ventured over there to say hi! Whilst we were there we met a lovely little Maltese called Ozzy (@_theycallmeozzy_ on Instagram) and the adorable Roshe the Sprocker (@roshethesprocker)

We then went on the hunt for a bed and came across Collared Creatures. They had just what I was looking for, a pillow bed that I could use in the car and would also fit into Amber’s cart so that she has something comfy to sit on when she’s in there. Their beds are great quality and are fur repellent. Amber has barely been off hers since we got it!

@AdorableCockers on Instagram
@super_spaniels_willow__and_ivy on Instagarm

@ladybelleofberkeley on Instagram

Before we left we went back to the Guru stand where we met some more lovely Instagram friends which was a lovely way to end the day. We’re looking forward to next year’s Dog Fest already!

Love Ellie & Amber x

Central Bark Dog Cafe

Amber and I had a lovely bank holiday walk planned but the sun came along and ruined it. This is England… We don’t plan for sun! It was far too hot to take Amber on any kind of walk (even with her fresh trim) so we decided to do something different and went to explore Central Bark Manchester. This is a dog cafe with a difference – it’s beach themed! Very fitting considering the weather – we had all the joys of the beach but without the sunburn and dehydration.

Upon arrival you are greeted with a ‘pee station’ which in any other situation would be rather worrying! Once your dog has made use of this facility, you can go inside and find yourself a seat in the cafe.

We were greeted by one of the lovely staff members as soon as we walked through the door and of course, Amber got a lot of attention. We were also greeted by some other furry friends as not only can you bring your dog, they also have some very well behaved pooches wondering around the cafe.

When it came to ordering food the service was incredible quick. I decided on some Avocado toast and being the greedy person I am had a big slice of chocolate cake for pudding!

As well as just being a dog cafe, Central Bark also offeres a day care service. You can even book your dog in for an hours play with the day care dogs whilst you enjoy your food – I decided to keep Amber with me in the cafe as she’s boring and doesn’t really play.

They do also offer a boarding service and I have to say it seems like a great environment for your pup to spend a holiday. They spend time walking the dogs who are boarding with them around the cafe so that they can say hi to everyone! Some of the well behaved ones even get to hang out in the cafe all day along with the manager’s dogs. I think Amber would love it there!

Finally, they have a groom room facility! I imagine some lucky dogs have a great day here – they get a makeover, a play date with loads of other doggy friends and endless attention from the cafe customers.

We will definitely be visiting again and would recommend it to anyone who lives in/ around the Manchester area.

Ellie and Amber x

Lymm Dam | Dog Friendly Cheshire

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One of my all time favourite places to walk Amber is Lymm. For such a small town, there’s a lot to do. Lymm has it all – fields, a canal, woods and of course Lymm Dam. They also have some dog friendly pubs in and around the village so you can really make a day of it when you visit.

With Amber’s Birthday coming up on Tuesday (10th April) I decided to celebrate this weekend by planning a day out with her friend Skye the border collie!

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Luckily the British weather was actually on our side for once and as well as having no rain, we were even graced with a bit of sun. After having a very long lie in, we started the day off with a walk down the canal. Despite the good weather, being the little mud magnet she is, Amber still managed to end up looking like she was wearing brown socks about 5 minutes into our adventure.

The canal runs right through Lymm and the surrounding towns so it’s a great walk on its own – I’ll do another blog about some of our favourite canal walks – but today we used it as a passage to get to Lymm Dam. You can come off the canal into the village then cut through the village to get to the Dam, which is what we decided to do. Walking down the canal is much nicer than walking though the town itself, and far more entertaining for the dogs. Amber got very excited when she saw a group of ducks. She would have gone in after them if she was less of a wimp! Although that might have been a good thing as it would have at least cleaned her up a bit; at this point she was absolutely covered in mud.

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After a short walk through the village, we made it to out destination, Lymm Dam! This is definitely up there in my list of all time favourite walks. It’s great for Amber as it’s a circuit which takes about 45 minutes to complete. Since Amber is broken 90% of the time, I usually try to keep her walks to under an hour, so this is perfect for her! If you don’t want to walk the whole way around, you can also cut across in the middle. This takes about 20 minutes off your walk which is what we did today (Since Amber had already walked down the canal to get there). The fact that it’s a circuit is also great for us humans, especially the ones who like taking photos, because it means there is always different scenery to be looking out for and you’re never going back on yourself.

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Both the canal and Lymm Dam are especially great places for dogs who enjoy swimming. Unfortunately, Amber is not one of those and would rather stay dirty for days than go anywhere near water. But if you do have a water-loving dog, keep these locations in mind!

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Once we had completed our walk around the Dam, we walked back through the Village. The plan was to get food there, but since it was a nice day, everywhere was packed! So instead we went to a lovely little pub that is just a 5 minute drive outside of Lymm called the Saracens Head. Unfortunately they doesn’t allow dogs in the bar but the food was great and there is plenty of outside seating so it’s a great place to consider for summer, or the occasional miracle spring day when it isn’t raining (like today)!

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Despite not allowing dogs indoors, they do still keep them in mind and provide dog bowls near the outside seating area. Amber is usually too fussy to drink out of communal dog bowls, but even she gave in and had a little drink, which I’m sure was very much needed after her walk!

All in all, Amber had a great day and is now fast asleep next to me on the sofa as I write this. She had loads of fun looking for ducks on the canal, running around the Dam (yes, she actually ran a little – amazing!) and begging for food at the pub! I’d definitely recommend exploring Lymm if you are ever in the area, as I’m sure Amber would too!

Love, Ellie and Amber x