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...walking the walk

By Woofpack, Oct 12 2014 11:46AM

Bonfire season is almost with us and whilst it’s great for to kids, parties and get-togethers, it also can be a terrifying time for dogs and cats. If you’re living in a community there will be displays of differing sizes, lengths and volumes going on around you from early evening to late; that’s going to be a fact of life. This year (2014) Guy Fawkes falls midweek so you can assume that celebrations will start the previous weekend and carry on well into November.


On the day your dog needs to have been walked well before dusk when displays generally start. It’s good to have a room in the house where your dog feels secure and relaxed; it’s also useful if you have blackout blinds to mask out the flashes from the fireworks. Close windows and curtains and put on some calming music. Your dog will probably still be aware of the bangs and crashes however it’s a good idea not to fuss over your pet as this only amplify the problem. Above all it’s important to have somewhere where your pet can retreat to where they feel safe. If you can be around the house, this additionally will help your dog feel more relaxed.


You can also use a plug in DAPT diffuser which emits calming pheromones (similar to those a puppy would experience from his or her mother) available from your vet. These create a safe feeling for your dog and help calm him down in the run up to or during the firework party season. You can also use natural remedies like Dog Rescue five flower remedies that you can simply drop onto their coats as well as some homeopathic treatments such as Kali Phos. On this final point, its important to stress that you will need to refer to your local vet, homeopath or ideally homeopathic vet for specific advice.


I’ve also come across noise phobia treatments which help dogs over time (a month and a half) conquer their fear or fireworks and loud noises. One such system is called Sound Therapy 4 Pets (which is recommended by the RSPCA) which sounds effective although I’ve had no experience of it.


By and large don't get stressed about Fireworks, use your common sense and keep safe!



By Woofpack, Sep 5 2014 09:40PM

Autumn is my favourite time of year and if you're up on Ashdown Forest you'll see what I mean. Ted and I were up on Gill's Lap walking the Pooh Route (one of my favourites) and the colours were just amazing. This is one of the places on the Forest to see the heather in its full glory; glorious lavender purples set against the lush greens of the bracken and gorse. My pictures hardly do the colours justice so go and witness the display for yourselves!

By Woofpack, Jul 7 2014 08:24AM

The incredible weather is open invitation to all kinds of newcomers to the Ashdown Forest. Here’s always plenty to see and hear whether it’s the Skylarks, Stonechats or Buzzards soaring on the thermals. Walking with Ted you more often than not hear rather than see the birds, especially he Buzzards who from their distinctive cries seem to be revelling in this warm weather.



This year is special – we’ve had a visit from a young Short-Toed Eagle who usually makes it as far as halfway up France or occasionally visits Germany. They’re after reptiles in the main so the Forest’s population of Adders should watch themselves! The fact that this is the bird’s third recorded visit to the UK has brought out the bird watchers in numbers even during the week.


We had trouble finding a spot for the truck up at Gill’s Lap such were the crowds. Ted the Welsh Collie could not have been less bothered as he is more interested in things closer to the ground. Plenty to do and see whilst the watchers scanned the skies over the 100 Acre Wood, the North Pole and Eeyore’s Sad & Gloomy Place - perhaps better known as Wren’s Warren. Gill’s Lap had a plenty to look at with lots of interesting people with dogs to meet plus the views to the North Downs were fantastic.


As far as the Ashdown Forest Conservators know, the Eagle is still here. The speculation is that it’s travelling between here and the New Forest where there’s also an ample supply of reptiles to feast on. Probably an easier life here (and its warm enough) rather than back where it’s normally found Africa.

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