Website for the over 60s  May 2017
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      Dora's Diary

Dora in the bluebells

             A monthly dog blog

Hi folks. Well, we’re into May. A lovely time of year. Especially if the weather’s fine. A chance for plenty of walkies. Have some fun and games with doggy pals. That’s if you’ve got any. Some of us form deep bonds with fellow mutts they live with.

Bossman saw such bonding between the two dogs belonging to Greg and Marsha Edwards. He met the first one, when it was four months old. A Coldoodle It’s collie-poodle cross apparently. Andy, as he was called, was a sweetie by all accounts.

Predominately white with splashes of grey – the blue merle collie in him. His coat long and curly – the poodle touch. The cross meant he wouldn’t shed his hair. He had no objection to being placed on Bossman’s consulting table for him to give him the once-over. A check of ears, eyes, teeth, heart.

"Andy’s first MOT," stated Marsha.

"And the start of a long happy life with you both," said Bossman.

"I’m sure it will be," said Greg as Bossman gave Andy his first vaccination and discussed the dietary requirements of a growing pup.

He wasn’t to see him until the following year when his booster was due. In that time he matured into a handsome hound, collie-sized but with the look of a shaggy white poodle.

"He’s adorable," remarked Marsha when Bossman enquired how things were. "So loyal and patient." She bent down and gave Andy a hug. "Always eager to please."

So all was tickety-boo. Hunky-dory. That is until the arrival of Tigger. A Jack Russell with an attitude problem. He considered everyone his enemy. Not to be trusted. Just bitten.

"He was my mum’s dog," explained Marsha, levering Tigger onto Bossman’s consulting table where he glared at him and curled up his lip, emitting a low growl at the same time. "She’s had to go into a home. So we’ve taken on Tigger."

There was another growl from the terrier.

"As you can see, he’s none too friendly," remarked Greg, standing to one side, their Coldoodle patiently sitting next to him, unfazed as ever.

"How do the two of them get on?" Bossman asked, glancing down at Andy.

Greg shook his head. "They don’t I’m afraid. Andy’s tried to make friends but Tigger won’t have any of it. Just snaps and growls at him every time."

"So Andy now keeps his distance," said Marsha.

"Wise lad," said Greg, patting the Coldoodle on the head. "Me too," he went on. "Having been bitten a couple of times." He held up a bandaged finger.

Bossman wished he’d also been able to keep his distance from the Jack Russell but Tigger needed to be examined. He’d been brought in because he’d been off his food recently. Had become rather listless. Sleeping a lot more.

"We wondered whether he was missing mum," said Marsha. "But then thought we’d better get him checked over. After all he is getting on a bit. He’ll be fourteen next month."

Bossman had Tigger in for X-rays and blood tests. A tumour on his liver was discovered. A cancer. Inoperable, Tigger would die from it.

It was at that point that the dynamics between the two dogs changed. If was as if Andy sensed what was going to happen. Greg and Marsha informed Bossman of these changes each time they brought Tigger in for him to check on the progression of the cancer and make sure Tigger wasn’t unduly suffering, still able to eat, take some interest in life around him.

"It’s almost as if Andy’s become his nursemaid," said Marsha. "He shuffles his bowl over to him. Encourages him to eat his own food."

"And Tigger now sleeps with Andy in his basket. Something he never ever used to do," said Greg. "It really is touching to see them having grown so close together."

When the time came for Bossman to put Tigger to sleep, it was done under the apple tree out in the Edwards’ back garden. Here too was where they buried him. And for the next 24 hours, Andy lay next to the grave, even sleeping there overnight. He clearly mourned the loss of his new found pal.

A sad story. But doesn’t it just show how us mutts can become great pals with each other?

Love and licks


Pets Aplenty by Malcolm Welshman

P.S. My Bossman is Malcolm Welshman.

His latest novel, Pets Aplenty, is published by Austin Macauley Tel: 0207 038 8212 at £7.99, Kindle version £0.99 and available to buy from  

Malcolm Welshman has his own website at 


 Prevent Tick Bites
 and Lyme Disease

Prevent tick bites and lyme disease

Spring is in full force and unfortunately this means so is the UK’s tick population, with numbers peaking between late spring and autumn. Ticks are blood-sucking parasites which latch themselves onto a person or animal and grow in size over several days, before dropping off. The problem is these little critters aren’t just unpleasant – they can also be potentially dangerous.

Ticks can carry and transmit Lyme disease, or Borreliosis, which is a debilitating bacterial illness, which can affect both people and their pets. It can lead to symptoms such as fever, pain and swelling in the joints, crippling arthritis, nerve damage and even meningitis.

Only a small proportion of ticks carry this disease but confirmed cases are increasing so it’s important to be vigilant when you’re out and about with your pooch. To help you do this, PDSA has put together a guide on preventing tick bites, and tips on what to do if you or your dog does get bitten by a tick. Being able to detect a tick on your pet is essential as removing it early will reduce the likelihood of bacteria being transmitted.


· Speak to your vet about prevention – Many flea treatments can also kill ticks.

· Ticks are often found in wooded and moorland areas, especially in long grass. If Lyme disease is known to be a problem where you live, avoid letting your dog wander in deep undergrowth or grass, stick to paths. Always wear long trousers tucked into socks and long sleeves to help protect yourself when walking in these areas too.

· After walking your dog, always check for ticks – especially in between dog’s toes and on their faces, ears, and underbelly. Ticks can’t fly or jump, but they attach themselves to the skin of people or animals as they brush against them. Their bite doesn’t hurt so they aren’t always noticed immediately.

· Hedgehogs and foxes are common tick carriers, meaning pets in urban areas with high fox populations are also at risk.

Symptoms of Lyme Disease

· A very small percentage of dogs that have been bitten by a tick will develop Lyme disease. It can cause a rash, a raised temperature, lack of energy, lameness due to joint inflammation and swollen lymph nodes.


· When they first attach, a tick may be the size of a small pinhead but, as they suck blood, they can grow to the size of a match head and may look like a bluish-grey, pink or purple lump.

· If you do spot a tick, on yourself or your pet, it must be removed properly as soon as possible. It is best to get advice from a vet before trying to remove a tick from your pet, as it’s easy to remove the body of the tick but the mouth parts can be left behind. If the tick isn’t properly removed it can cause an abscess or infection.

· Special tick removers are available to buy, but need to be used carefully, so speak to your vet or vet nurse for guidance before attempting to remove ticks.

· Some common myths around tick removal include squeezing the tick’s body or destroying it with a lighted match – Don’t do any of these or put Vaseline on the tick as it may drop off but will still be alive to bite another victim

· The sooner you remove the tick the better – the risk of spreading disease increases the longer the tick is attached. Remember that Lyme disease is spread by infected ticks, not from pet to person.

PDSA is the UK’s leading vet charity. We’re on a mission to improve pet wellbeing through prevention, education and treatment. Funding from players of People’s Postcode Lottery helps us reach even more pet owners with vital advice and information

  Yorkshire Couple
Become Pet Sitters

Jeanette and Bryan become Pet Sitters

Jeanette 53 and Bryan 55 from Otley in West Yorkshire took early retirement in 2012 from their jobs as a dental receptionist and Bryan as a Police Sargent and stumbled upon an article in a magazine that was to change their life. The article was about a new concept in travel, house sitting through a company called TrustedHousesitters where you apply to stay in peoples homes all over the world for free in exchange for looking after the resident pet.

As huge animal lovers this really appealed to Jeanette and Bryan, they were well travelled but looking for an opportunity to spend longer in a new place where they could absorb the local life. With their two children now grown up and one living abroad they decided to try it. They initially went for short term local sits to get a feel for the house sitting experience and their sits gradually became longer and further afield.

They soon became completely hooked, they save money by doing longer sits and love travelling in a home from home environment rather than in expensive hotels. House sitting allows them to immerse themselves in local communities, experience different countries from a real home, cook food, do chores, this normality is important to Jeanette and a pet really helps with meeting the local community.

Jeanette becomes a pet sitter

Bryan says, “When most people retire, they take up golf or go on cruises. We’ve swapped our home life for a nomadic year of house sitting - moving all around the world but doing this authentically, by living within real communities and doing so with the company of pets which we adore. It feels way more adventurous than staying where we are. It feels like we’re moving forward, seeing the world in a way that often only younger people do - by exploring cultures and meeting new people.”

This year they have decided to take their house sitting adventure to another level by committing to a year of house sitting, renting out their own home while they travel the world for free. They have planned a route starting in Hong Kong moving on to China, Japan and the Philippine’s with a house sit booked for Adelaide over Christmas, they will apply for house sits as they go and let the sits dictate their route.

Jeannette says, “If I get a little home sick and want to see the grandkids I will pop back to the UK and take a local house sit near the family. We do lots of house sitting in Gloucestershire enabling us to do Nanny and Grampy stuff without imposing on our daughter.”

When asked what their friends think, Jeanette adds, “They think we’ve gone mad but they love it. Our children think this is a great idea, and with our son working in Cambodia we also use house sitting as a way of catching up with him by visiting nearby countries. It’s given us a new lease of life - we feel daring and young and ready for new challenges and we look forward to all the new friends we’ll make along the way - two and four legged!”

TrustedHousesitters has grown hugely from the time when Bryan and Jeanette first joined in 2012. It now has a community of more than 300,000 with house sitting opportunities in more than 140 countries, and is the largest and most trusted house sitting business in the world.

With so many sits and stories to tell it is hard to pick favourites but two sits really stand out for Jeanette and Bryan a Christmas in Singapore with Benson the Labradoodle as big as Jeanette and sit in the earth quake stricken South Island of New Zealand where a Bernese mountain dog needed lots of love during an earth tremor. It is clear from talking to them that their love of travelling is equal to the love of the animals they meet along the way having completed over forty sits with twenty seven 5 star reviews Jeanette and Bryan see house sitting as a way of life.

Unlike a home rental, with TrustedHousesitters no money changes hands. Unlike a house swap, there is no need to have someone stay in your home if you simply want to travel as a sitter. All arrangements are made through trust, with members building their trust profiles through references, recommendations and police background checks.

For details about TrustedHousesitters visit

Pet Care  

Never Leave a Dog in a Hot Car!

Never leave a dog in a hot car

   Animal groups warn, ‘It’s never
   okay to leave a dog in a hot car’

Worrying figures show four out of 10 people think it’s okay to leave dogs in hot cars. More than 40% of people believe it can be acceptable to leave a dog in a hot car, worrying new figures from the RSPCA have revealed.

A survey of more than 8,000 people, commissioned by the RSPCA, revealed that only 55% agreed that it is never acceptable to leave a dog in a hot car.

The RSPCA and 11 other groups have joined forces to raise awareness among the general public, and particularly among dog owners, that it is never acceptable to leave a dog in a hot car. It comes following the deadly summer of 2016 in which a number of dogs perished in cars and conservatories.

The ‘Dogs Die in Hot Cars’ campaign group is made up of Battersea Dogs & Cats Home, Blue Cross, British Veterinary Association, Dog’s Trust, The Kennel Club, The Mayhew Animal Home, National Animal Welfare Trust, National Police Chiefs Council, PDSA, RSPCA, #TeamOtisUK and Wood Green The Animals Charity.

Campaign manager Holly Barber, from the RSPCA, says, “You should never leave a dog in a hot car. This isn’t a new message, it’s something we’ve been shouting from the rooftops for a number of years now but it’s staggering that more than 40% of people still think it’s okay.

“The message is getting through to many people but there are still too many instances where animals are being left in sweltering cars, caravans and conservatories and tragically some of them have deadly consequences like last summer when four dogs died.”

One man was convicted for causing unnecessary suffering to his three Staffordshire bull terriers who died after being left in a car in 16
°C last June and a second man was sentenced in his absence last month in March for leaving a husky-cross dog to die in a conservatory on a sweltering day last August.

Now, the group of charities and organisations, are striving to ensure no more animals suffer or die needlessly because of a lack of awareness around the dangers of leaving animals in hot environments.

Holly adds, “While ignorance is bliss in many circumstances, this most certainly is not one of them. There is no excuse for owners not to be aware of the dangers associated with leaving any animal in an environment in which they cannot escape the heat or the sun.

“It doesn’t have to be a hot day, it doesn’t have to be a car, and it doesn’t have to be a dog. We’ve seen dogs dying in cars but we’ve also, tragically, seen them lose their lives in conservatories. And while generally dogs are most likely to be affected, they are not the only pets this applies to.

“Last year, a man was convicted for leaving his ferret in a car on a warm day. The ferret lost his life. We’re all working together to ensure no more lives are lost and no more animals suffer needlessly.”

The group aims to reduce the number of dogs, and other pets, suffering having from being left in cars or at home in conservatories or other hot environments, by raising awareness of the dangers.

Never leave a dog in a hot car

Kennel Club Secretary Caroline Kisko adds, “Owners should never leave a dog unattended in a vehicle or other potentially hot environment, it is not enough to just open a window or leave a supply of water. Dogs should instead be left in a secure, cool place with access to shade and water, or if you know this won’t be possible, you should consider leaving your dog at home in cool, safe surroundings.

“In an ideal world owners can take their dogs with them when they shop or go for a bite to eat, this is one of the reasons why the Kennel Club encourages businesses to be dog friendly and welcome our four legged friends rather than insist that they wait outside or in the car.”

It’s important to remember not to leave any animal in a car or caravan, or in a conservatory or outbuilding, where temperatures can quickly rise, even when it doesn’t feel that warm outside. For example, when it’s 22
°C outside, within an hour the temperature can reach 47°C inside a vehicle, which can result in death.

In an emergency, call 999

In an emergency, call 999

In an emergency, the group’s advice is to call 999 to report a dog in a hot car to police. However, shockingly, the RSPCA’s survey revealed that only 48% of people said they would call the police first.

As a charity, the RSPCA may not be able to attend quickly enough and, with no powers of entry, we’d need police assistance at such an incident.

· If the animal is displaying any sign of heatstroke - such as panting heavily, drooling excessively, is lethargic or uncoordinated, or collapsed and vomiting - call 999 immediately.

· If the situation becomes critical and police can’t attend, many people’s instinct is to break into the car to free the dog. But please be aware that, without proper justification, this could be classed as criminal damage. Make sure you tell the police of your intentions and take photos or footage of the dog as well as names and numbers of witnesses. The law states that you have a lawful excuse to commit damage if you believe that the owner of the property that you damage would consent to the damage if they knew the circumstances.

· Once removed from the car, move the dog to a shaded/cool area and douse him/her with cool water. Allow the dog to drink small amounts of cool water.

· If the dog isn’t displaying signs of heatstroke, establish how long the dog has been in the car and make a note of the registration. Ask a member of staff to make an announcement of the situation over the tannoy, if possible, and get someone to stay with the dog to monitor its condition.

Call for help in an emergency

You can call the RSPCA’s 24-hour emergency cruelty line on
0300 1234 999 for advice but, if a dog is in danger, dialling 999 should always be the first step.

For more information about the RSPCA visit the website at

  Watch the informative video
     from the RSPCA below

       Click on arrow to watch

12 Good Reasons Why Animals can Benefit the Elderly and those Living with Dementia

Billy is an office pet at SweetTree


Award-winning home care provider, SweetTree, is keen to acknowledge the benefits that animals bring to the elderly. SweetTree is a pet-friendly company that welcomes pets in its own office environment.

Company Founder Barry Sweetbaum says, “We recognise the value that pets have in improving the wellbeing of those around us including our clients and staff. In the office, we have two dogs – Bella and Billy and having them around makes everyone much more relaxed.”

SweetTree also acknowledges animals for the many benefits they bring to the elderly, especially those living with dementia. “People with dementia find a pet easy to communicate with because there’s no expectations,” says Barry. “Clients know my dog Billy and they welcome him, as he’s not a threat or a challenge. He has no expectation that they will know his name and it’s a very straightforward interaction.”

A person with dementia can be confused about what stage of their life they are at and may think they are back in the past.

Barry adds, “Pets don’t change their appearance over time. As humans, our clothes and images have changed over the years – the clothes we wear and the haircuts we have are different now to many years ago. But dogs haven’t changed and my dog Billy looks exactly how you would expect a dog to look at any time in history.”

Billy and Bella are the office pets at SweetTree

Having a pet or interacting with one can improve the health and wellbeing of the elderly, boosting physical health as well as mood. Here are 12 key reasons why pets can benefit physical and mental wellbeing:

Lower blood pressure

Scientists believe that stroking a dog or a cat can help you relax and therefore reduce blood pressure. A 2002 study revealed that dog or cat owners had lower resting heart rates and blood pressure than those who didn’t have pets.

Reduced risk of heart attack and stroke

According to scientists, owning a cat can relieve stress and anxiety and therefore reduce the risk of heart disease. A study that looked at over 4400 adults aged between 30 and 75, including half who owned a cat, showed that 3.4% had died from a heart attack over ten years.

In the group who had never owned a cat, 5.8% had died from heart attacks.

Better mood

Stroking a dog can be comforting to both parties. When you stroke a dog, a hormone called oxytocin, linked to anxiety relief, is released. A study conducted at Uppsala University in Sweden presented at the 12th International Conference of Human-Animal Interactions in 2010, showed that friendly human-dog interaction releases oxytocin in both humans and dogs.

“It’s interesting if you walk down the street with a dog how many people look at him and it brings a smile to their face,” says Barry. “That really stimulates a positive emotional response.”

Fewer visits to the doctor

According to Pets for The Elderly Foundation in the US, 21% of elderly persons who had a pet had fewer visits to their doctor. Owning a pet like a dog will make you more active.

Being regularly active is noted for reducing heart disease and risk of having a stroke, as well as reducing the risk of developing diseases like dementia and some cancers. Experts also believe that pets can help us recover faster after illness or surgery.

Better social contact

Walking a dog is more likely to promote social interaction and conversations with others and lead to increased likelihood of new friendships. There is more chance striking up conversations with pet owners in parks and other public places when you are walking a dog.

Less stress

Stroking a pet is thought to reduce the level of stress-related hormones in the blood according to Professor Adnan Qureshi from Minnesota University. Reducing stress can help protect against heart disease by lowering blood pressure and reducing heart rate.

More affection and love

Focusing on taking care of an animal is a great way to give and receive love. “It’s a very positive thing to recognise the care and nurturing benefits of having a dog and focusing emotional energy on a pet,” says Barry.

More active

Dog walkers will naturally be active. According to a 1991 survey, pet owners in general had higher exercise levels and fewer minor health problems.

Greater sense of comfort and security

For many elderly people who lack regular social interaction and company, pets can be their main source of comfort. In a survey by Pets For The Elderly Foundation, 95% of elderly people spoke to their pets, while 82% said their pets help them when they feel sad.

A positive focus and a sharper mind

SweetTree’s Content Manager Christina Macdonald noticed a marked improvement in her late mother Hazel, who had vascular dementia, when caring for her cat. “My mother loved her cat and was always happier when she was around,” recalls Christina.

“When her cat passed away, mum was understandably distraught but I also noticed a change in her mood and mental function. Her dementia seemed to get worse – she became less focused, more detached and more easily confused. Her cat had given her a sense of purpose and focus.”

Better mood

Animal-based therapy is popular in care homes as it has been shown to reduce agitation and improve social interaction in those with dementia. Alzheimer’s Society actively encourages those with dementia to keep pets for as long as they can, or interact with them as much as possible.

However, if you are taking a pet into a care home or to a person’s home, make sure they have the right temperament and will comfort the person rather than cause more stress. Make sure dogs aren’t prone to jumping or barking loudly and ensure cats are friendly and not likely to bite when stroked.

Improved overall health

Pet owners seem to be healthier than those who don’t own pets according to experts. Those with a good relationship with their pets were, on average, healthier than those who don’t have pets according to pet research Allen R McConnell, a professor of psychology at Miami University.

About SweetTree

SweetTree Home Care Services is an award-winning business providing the highest quality care and support for individuals in the home. With a compassionate, highly trained team of experienced carers, SweetTree delivers outstanding domiciliary care spanning a wide range of needs from basic through to more complex requirements.

Areas of expertise include dementia care, learning disabilities, acquired brain injuries, neurological conditions and end-of-life support. The company has been twice recognised in the Sunday Times 100 Best Companies to Work for in the UK and an Investor’s In People Gold Award Winner.

For more information about SweetTree visit

  Hole in One for Lost
   Lamb with RSPCA
& New Home

Lost lamb found on golf course

It was a happy ending for a little lost lamb who had come a ‘fairway’ and wandered onto a golf course…

Golfers enjoying a quick round had quite a shock one evening after a little lost lamb wandered onto the course.

A group of teenage girls, who spotted the little orphan and were worried about his welfare, called the RSPCA who sent animal collection officer (ACO) Kim Sheriff to collect him.

ACO Sheriff found the baby at the course in Nelson, Lancashire. “A member of the public found the lamb all alone on the golf course and couldn’t see any other sheep nearby so called us.

“The lamb was very young and it wasn’t clear where he had come from. He seemed rather ‘teed off’ to be there all alone. He still had his umbilical cord attached so we took him to a nearby veterinary centre for assessment. Staff gave him a feed but couldn’t keep him so I took him overnight to keep up the feeding.”

The following morning inspector Natalie Taylor contacted local farmers but was unable to find out where the little lamb had come from. The officers arranged some official paperwork to transport the lamb and a local farm park agreed to take him on.

“This little one was very young and vulnerable so the girls definitely did the right thing in calling us to come and help him,” confirms ACO Sheriff.

“If anyone sees an animal in distress or is concerned for a baby animal then we would urge them to call our 24-hour cruelty line for advice.”

To help the RSPCA continue rescuing, rehabilitating and rehoming animals in desperate need of care visit

Or text LOVE to 87023 to give £3 (Text costs £3 + one standard network rate message).


   The Purr-fect Party

Maia Boylla, Product Manager for Argos Pet Insurance looks at the trend for pet parties

Us Brits love a good party, so it’s no surprise that a quarter of us now throw one every year in honour of our furry friends. And they’re nothing to be sniffed at either – together, we’ve spent over £7billion on pampering our four-legged companions in the last 12 months alone.

Maia Boylla, Product Manager for Argos Pet Insurance, delves deeper into this trend and explores where it’s come from and how to ensure it gets a round of ‘appaws’…

Celebrity trends

Those with social media accounts won’t be strangers to seeing cute pictures of pop stars’ and actors’ pet pooches. They love posting photos of their adorable pups and don’t shy away from letting us in on the birthday party fun, either – albeit virtually.

None other than former President of the USA, Barrack Obama, and his family, recently joined in the craze celebrating their beloved dog Bo’s seventh birthday. The Portuguese Water Dog, who even has her own
Wikipedia page was lavished with doggie cakes and even got into the spirit of things by donning a shiny party hat.

But don’t worry – if your pet isn’t one for a fuss, there are all sorts of ways to spoil him or her on their birthday. And it doesn’t have to break the bank.

Budget or boom

Research conducted by Argos Pet Insurance reveals that owners have paid for cakes, presents and even pet entertainment for the special day. One lady reportedly spent over £4,000 on her pampered pooch with a no-expense-spared bash including a clown, face painting and three birthday cakes.

However, it needn’t cost the earth. For a more modest affair, all you need are some doggy or moggy-friendly treats, a couple of gifts (squeaky toys or feather wands always go down a storm) and some of your pet’s favourite music. Most pets do get tired quickly and to avoid risking too much over excitement, it’s best to limit it to an hour.

One for the grandkids

As the so-called sandwich generation, it’s no wonder how easy it is to be influenced by the grandkids. Kids and parties go hand in hand, so why not get them to help out? Drawing invitations, helping bake cakes and packing party bags for your human guests are just a few of the things that little hands can help with to make the event run that bit more smoothly. They always know how to get the party started, too, so make sure the playlist includes some of their favourite songs.

Barking mad for it

At Argos Pet Insurance, we’re embracing this new craze and are joining in the celebrations as we agree that pets deserve some extra special treatment on their birthday. For more ideas and inspiration, we’ve created guides to help you throw the ultimate pet-friendly party on our website.

Kelly Roberts, ‘mum’ to three cocker spaniel pups and their big brother, held a knees up for their first birthday. Her adorable dogs enjoyed celebrating and relished the extra attention.

Kelly has these tips for anyone thinking about throwing a bash…

· Keep it fun and light-hearted and try not to go too over the top with treats – you don’t want them to spend their birthday with an upset tummy

· If you’re making a birthday cake for your pet on the day, never include chocolate, macadamia nuts, avocado, grapes, sultanas, raisins or currants. Also avoid adding too much sugar. Good doggy cake ingredients are olive or coconut oil, rice or rye flour, peanut butter, honey, cream cheese, mascarpone, grated carrots, cored apples or courgettes

· If you want to share human food with your pets as a rare treat, avoid rich foods such as deli meats that can cause gastrointestinal problems, and avoid tinned tuna in brine for cats. Many foods can also cause allergic reactions, so if you’re unsure then it’s best to stick with what you know is safe

· Remember to take lots of photos and videos for future memories

· Lastly, if your pet isn’t enjoying it, or becomes overwhelmed, then stop!

About Argos Pet Insurance

Argos Pet Insurance covers cats and dogs and offers a range of policies to suit customer needs, including lifetime cover with its platinum policy. It covers pets from eight weeks old with no upper limit on the age of pets, though death from illness in dogs aged 9 or older is not covered.

Argos Pet Insurance has been established over 14 years and has covered more than 1 million paws since 2002.

As with all insurances, terms and conditions apply. Argos Limited is an appointed representative of Home Retail Group Insurance Services Limited (HIS). For pet insurance, HIS acts as an intermediary to Royal & Sun Alliance Insurance plc (RSA), which sells, administers and underwrites this policy, HIS is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.

RSA is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority. Further details are available on request.

For full details about Argos Pet Insurance policies visit

      Happy Holiday
  Fun with Your Dog

Ruff And Tumble's Ultimate Dog Drying coat

If you are planning to take your dog away on holiday with you this summer you need Ruff And Tumble's Ultimate Dog Drying coat!

Not only will your dog love being wrapped up in this soft double-thickness towelling robe after a wet walk, but you will have peace of mind in terms of limiting wet dog mess.

Ruff And Tumble's Ultimate Dog Drying coats

Ruff and Tumble also offer stylish towelling sofa throws, ideal for protecting furniture, drying mitts for a quick rub down of paws and fitted towelling dog bed covers.

Ruff And Tumble Drying Coats are made from high-quality, double thickness, cotton towelling. Modelled on the design of a horse blanket, the coats are very simple to put on and take off.

Ruff And Tumble's Ultimate Dog Drying coats

No more wet/muddy shake off, no more back breaking drying of soggy dogs and no more old towels!

These fantastic products are ideal for protecting your home, hotel room, caravan and car.

Ruff And Tumble's Ultimate Dog Drying coats

Ruff and Tumble Drying Coats are available in a selection of styles, colours and sizes. Prices start from £25 - £55.

For a stress-free and relaxing holiday with your dog this summer visit the Ruff and Tumble website at 

   Cat Lovers Urged to
      Join Demands to
  Extend Air Gun Laws

Cat lovers are urged to join the demands to extend air gun laws

Cat lovers are being urged to back a major campaign for a change in the law on air guns to bring England and Wales in line with the rest of the UK. Cats Protection says a lack of UK-wide regulation means the vast majority - 90% - of air gun attacks on cats happen in England and Wales.

Both Northern Ireland and Scotland already have air gun licensing laws in place, and the charity has now launched an online petition to urge the government to bring in regulation across the rest of the UK.

Cats Protection’s Advocacy Manager Jacqui Cuff says, “Cats and other animals in England and Wales are hugely vulnerable to being the victim of an air gun attack because there is nothing to stop air guns falling into the wrong hands.

“The reality of an air gun attack on a cat is horrific, and around half die as a result of their injuries. Those that survive will endure considerable suffering and may be left with life-long disabilities. Owners can face a great deal of upset and huge vet bills and whole communities can be left deeply worried about attacks of this kind in their neighbourhood.

“Scotland and Northern Ireland have already taken action to address this, having brought in the strict regulations to regulate who can own such deadly weapons. Cats Protection believes it’s time the rest of the UK caught up and cat owners and communities in England and Wales can be afforded with the same peace of mind.”

In 2016, 202 cats in the UK were reported in the press as being shot with an air gun. Crucially 90% of these attacks were in England and Wales. Northern Ireland led the way in restricting gun ownership and since 2004, anyone who buys, owns or uses an air weapon in Northern Ireland is now required to have a licence. Scotland adopted similar legislation earlier in 2017.

Cats which have been victims of air gun attacks in England and Wales over the past year include:

· Lily: In April last year, Cats Protection was contacted about Lily, a cat from York that was shot in the stomach with an air gun. The bullet perforated her bowels and she underwent emergency surgery to repair the damage. Despite suffering from severe peritonitis she came through and is now well on the road to recovery.

· Chaos: Chaos was shot between her eyes in September 2016 in Neath, South Wales. The pellet narrowly missed her brain and lodged in the muscle between her spine and gullet, where it remains. It did, however, shatter the bones in her nose making her unable to breathe except through her mouth which, of course, prevented her from eating or drinking.

She was fitted with a feeding tube which has now been removed and she is able to eat and drink again. She has only been outside once since her recovery and was frightened by the lights outside the house which tends to support the vet’s theory that a light was shone in her face to temporarily blind her before being shot.

Cats Protection has now launched an online petition to encourage cat owners to get behind its campaign and put pressure on the government to update the law on air guns in England and Wales.

To watch the Cats Protection’s campaign video and sign the petition, or find out more about the campaign, please visit the website at