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Giving for life not just for Christmas

Date Posted: 26 Nov 2017 << back to blog list

I’m one of those fortunate parents whose child has grown up enough not to want the latest mortgage draining present for Christmas, money in the bank account seems to be the wish this year. As an only child, there isn’t a lot I wouldn’t do for him but some would argue, I would do the same for our 10 dogs. When it comes to the best in health care for your pet, how far would you go?
Twenty years ago, the idea of a vet putting a prosthetic limb on a dog wouldn’t have even entered our minds or that my two Paralympic pooches could race around the park on specially constructed ‘made to measure’ carts wouldn’t raise an eyebrow. A ‘disabled’ dog is as much of the norm as a human in a wheel chair although we do get the occasional comment.  In the 21st century we have access to specialist treatments such as canine osteopathy, hydrotherapy, immunotherapy, homeopathy and more ‘opathies’, the world of veterinary care can exceed that of humans when it comes to provide treatments. At a cost. There is no NHS for our precious pooches and few insurers will fork out vast sums of money without a battle. We now have the ability to reconstruct a hip or reattach spinal nerves when less than half a decade ago our beloved companion would have been put to sleep but all still comes with a huge financial outlay. To add to this, there can be a long period of rehabilitation either at a rehab centre or at home in a crate. Stopping a 5-year-old Border terrier from leaping on furniture or running stairs after a cruciate operation or confining a year-old Whippet to a crate after surgery to mend a broken hind leg isn’t a walk in the park. You can have the option of leaving your dog at a specialist rehabilitation centre but could you bear to be separated from your companion for 6 weeks or more? 
Although I have two dogs who have back legs that don’t work, they are not the biggest vet bill in the home, that title belongs to Arry. Arry’s allergies are almost a research study by now, every type of grass and tree affects him and of course, me. It’s incredibly frustrating watching your dog constantly scratch and not knowing how to stop him. Apart from the lack of sleep on my part due to his incessant nocturnal nibbling, the agitation affects his behaviour so I have become a modern-day Louis Pasteur. I will find the solution even if I have to remortgage the house. I have sought expert veterinary advice, done immunotherapy, changed his diet (several times), talked to alternative practitioners, skyped colleagues in the holistic field of canine and googled so much my eyeballs are following a similar trend. I’m still getting no sleep and the credit card is straining but who cares? By the end of this, I will be the world’s expert in German Shepherd itchiness. 
The afore mentioned Border Terrier, Effie, recently stayed with me for rehab. Her owner researched every possible surgery and specialist care for her and we discussed them all. Effie adores home life and when she isn’t there, she is with me so the best idea was recuperation at Dog Hollow. Being in a familiar place even though she was restricted meant that Effie could mend with friends and see her mum on a regular basis. It worked for her and she is now well on the way to recovery in record time with the help of Dogtown hydrotherapy.
 Just like Effie’s mum, we search for the best possible solution because we want the best for our pets. And yet, every Christmas rescue centres are inundated with abandoned animals of all ages.  In 2015, 47, 000 pets were abandoned in the UK. In the two weeks leading up to Christmas last year, the Dogs Trust took in almost 200 dogs. As a nation of supposed dog lovers, we are quick to get rid of older and sick dogs so that they can be replaced with the latest designer puppy. Puppy farmers rub their pockets with glee and social media is alive with cute pups in Santa outfits. We are inundated by pet shop advertising for the latest must have toys and beds for the new puppy let alone the festive treats. And we will spend £47 million to make their Christmas the best ever. 
Well not me. I’m going to put that to better use. My dogs have toys and to be honest, they have no idea who Santa is but a walk in the park is always on the top of their wish list. My dogs, considering 7 of them are rescues, have decided they want theirs to go to a canine cause.  We will give a little to those in rescue, a little to those owners who can’t afford treatment for their beloved companions and a little to MacGyver’s Legacy.  After all, every dog should have a chance at life, not just Christmas.

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London Services

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Surrey, Kent & Sussex

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Party animal or party pooper (no pun intended)

Socialisation. A noun meaning “the activity of mixing socially with others” or “the process of learning to behave in a ...

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