Lisa and Thomas with assistance dog Vito, were VIP guests at the grand opening of Pets at Home inside Tesco Extra in Durham on Saturday 11th November.
The family officially opened the new store, before being invited to choose a selection of Pets at Home’s toys and treats for Vito.
Store manager Jill Allen, has been with Pets at Home for over two years, having previously worked at the Alnwick branch.
Jill said: “What a fantastic start! Our opening weekend went even better than we had hoped and it was great to have Lisa, Thomas and Vito attend the launch and show them all the products we have on offer at the store.
“Our new store features thousands of dedicated pet products for not only local dogs and cats but small animals, fish and local wildlife too.”
All colleagues at the new store receive extensive training on pet care and pet knowledge which is endorsed by City & Guilds, providing a stamp of approval that demonstrates the value of its training. Colleagues at the Durham store are dedicated to providing the highest levels of customer service, and are trained to offer great pet care tips and product knowledge.
Dogs for Good volunteer, Lisa Dixon said “Thomas and I were really excited to be cutting the ribbon at the launch event for the brand new Durham Pets at Home store. It gave us an opportunity to show our appreciation for all the fantastic support Pets at Home gives to Dogs for Good.
“Vito was also very excited to meet lots of new people, getting loads of fuss and sniffing out a few treats!”
Customers who attended the launch also enjoyed fun family activities such as face painting and a balloon modeller was on hand to make a variety of different animals.
The store which is located inside the Tesco Extra on Dragonville Industrial Estate includes a pet pharmacy which will provide a large range of health care products including supplements, first aid, dental care and flea and worms treatments.
The new store opening hours will be 8am-10pm Monday – Saturday and 10am-4pm on Sundays.
Founded in 1991, Pets at Home has more than 430 sites across the UK employing more than 6,000 people and is proud to have won The Sunday Times Top 25 Best Big Companies to Work For 2013.
A charity that makes life-changing differences for people with disabilities receives a £1,000 donation from a south midlands housebuilder.
Dogs for Good received the donation from Persimmon Homes South Midlands as part of their national Community Champion scheme – an initiative that gives away up to £2,000 to two charities each month, in each of its 29 regions across the UK.
Based in Banbury, Dogs for Good looks for innovative ways to transform lives by bringing dogs and people together. Their assistance dogs support adults and children with a range of disabilities and also children with autism. They train and support community dogs and their specialist handlers to work in communities and schools, allowing one dog to help lots of different people. The charity also has a family dog service which gives advice and support to help people get the most out of their relationship with their pet dog.
Cathryn Simpson, corporate partnerships manager, at Dogs for Good, said: “We’d like to thank Persimmon Homes South Midlands for their kind donation. They are now a Puppy Partner to Gibson, and will support his journey from learner pup to life-changing dog.
“Our dogs make a real difference helping to increase independence, improve self-confidence and reduce social isolation and we want to help as many people as possible but we rely purely on vital donations like this as we receive no government funding.”
Carol Selway, sales director for Persimmon Homes South Midlands, said: “We’re proud to be supporting a charity that enriches so many people lives and gives both children and adults their own independence.
“The services that Dogs for Good provides are incredible and I can’t think of a more worthy Community Champion winner.
“We hope this donation will help continue all the good the work the charity does and further improve lives for generations to come.”
Photo: Volunteer Annie with puppy in training Alvin, and Joel with his assistance dog Harry.
Saturday 7th October, 11am – 3pm at Dogs for Good, The Frances Hay Centre, Blacklocks Hill, Banbury OX17 2BS
Join Dogs for Good as they celebrate Dogtober with their annual charity autumn fair. In its eighth year the fair will have a delightful variety of local and handmade items for sale. 20 stalls will offer visitors the chance to buy beautiful gifts, early Christmas presents and treats for themselves. Purchase items from handmade cushions and ceramics to jams, preserves to unique cards – there really is something for everyone.
Denise from the Banbury Supporters Group says “We have been holding charity fairs since 2009 and this will be the first one we hold at the Dogs for Good Training centre in Banbury, we have a great variety of stalls this year alongside traditional fair games, tombola and raffle”
Entrance to the fair is free and if you are interested in taking a stall please call Denise on 07491 658970. Please note that pet dogs are not allowed at this event.
Money raised will go towards Dogs for Good. Dogs for Good makes life changing differences for people with disabilities. The charity’s assistance dogs support adults and children with a range of disabilities and children with autism and the charity also trains activity and therapy dogs to work with specialist handlers in communities and schools helping adults with autism, people with learning disabilities amongst others. Its Family Dog team gives specialist training advice and support to help families of a child with autism to leverage support from their pet dog .
Many people Dogs for Good works to support find that by developing a special bond with a trained dog they are able to overcome challenges, build confidence and consider new opportunities such as starting a new job or going to college and playing a more active role in their community. Partnership with a dog also helps to reduce social isolation and bring families closer together.
Taking place throughout October, Dogtober is designed to put the fun into fundraising and the Charity has come up with six, simple ideas that Top Dogs can use to help raise the vital funds needed to train dogs to make a life-changing difference to people with a range of disabilities and children with autism.
- Pupcake Sale: What’s more enticing? Puppies or cupcakes? It’s a tough one but Dogs for Good has come up with a recipe for ‘Pupcakes’ that can be used to bake up a storm and raise money at the same time.
- Welly Wednesday: There are four Wednesdays in Dogtober so it’s a great excuse to wear wellies anywhere and everywhere to raise funds … as well as eyebrows!
- Dogtober Walk: Walks in autumn are a joy and an organised Dogtober walk can bring together a whole host of two and four-legged fresh-air fans ready for a rustle through the leaves.
- Hot Dogs for Good Dogs: Plain or saucy, whose mouth doesn’t water at the thought of a Hot Dog? Get the taste buds tingling and the money jingling by holding a Dogtober Hot Dog sale.
- Go Green for Dogs for Good: Green is the Dogs for Good logo colour and this idea has no limits. Be bold and get sponsored to dye your hair green for the month of Dogtober or simply wear green socks for the day!
- Really Good Coffee Morning: Coffee mornings are a firm fundraising favourite so get the kettle on and host one at a friend’s house or go large and take over the Town Hall!
Whether it’s bringing together work colleagues, friends, family, neighbours or dog-walking groups, there’s a Dogtober event that’s sure to get tails wagging.
Want a dog but too busy to have one? Live in the Banbury area? Life transforming Charity Dogs for Good is after people like you!
Dogs for Good urgently needs volunteers to look after their amazing dogs-in-training on a ‘bed & breakfast’ basis. Volunteers will look after a dog in the evenings and at the weekend, taking them home to have a well earned rest from their training – perfect for people who are out at work or have other commitments during the day.
Potential volunteers will need to have an enclosed garden and be able to drop the dog off and pick them up from the Dogs for Good Banbury centre. You’ll be provided with everything that you need for the dog, which will be training to become an assistance or community dog to help people with disabilities.
“I wasn’t quite sure how I would deal with saying goodbye. The dogs are all so amazing with a unique personality; you can’t help but love them all. The first time I watched the result of the training and absolute commitment from the trainers, I had a tear in my eye and it all made sense.” says Alison, B&B boarder.
Potential volunteers must…
- be able to bring the dog into the Charity’s Banbury centre in the morning and pick them up at the end of the day Monday – Friday
- have a secure, enclosed garden with a fence or wall measuring at least 5 foot
- be able to exercise the dogs as required by their trainer
- not leave the dog for more than a four hour period and have no more than two pet dogs
- be aware that B&B Boarding lasts from 16 – 18 weeks
If you fulfil these requirements please click here to download an application form.
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Dogs for Good is delighted to announce that Digby, a twelve week old, golden retriever cross Labrador puppy has joined the ITV This Morning show today and will be making weekly appearances on the show over the next twelve months.
This puppy may just be a cute bundle of fur right now, but he’s destined for great things. Charity Dogs for Good makes life changing differences to people with disabilities through specially trained dogs.
The charity’s assistance dogs support adults and children with a range of disabilities and also children with autism. In addition, the charity’s community dog service trains activity and therapy dogs to work with specialist handlers in a variety of settings including hospitals, in social care and schools. The charity’s Family Dog team also gives specialist advice and support to help families with a child with autism get the most out of their relationship with their pet dog.
ITV This Morning viewers named the Dogs for Good puppy live on the show today. Digby will be puppy socialised by Helen Townsend, an experienced Dogs for Good volunteer who has already socialised four puppies for the charity – resulting in Helen having volunteered for nearly 2,000 days caring for young pups. Helen will accompany Digby to the ITV This Morning studios each week and over the next year and when Digby’s not taking a starring role, Helen will be helping him to learn about the world around him. Together the pair will be visiting supermarkets, restaurants and other busy places, travelling on buses and trains – in fact all the sort of places that Digby might go as a working dog. Helen will also be teaching him all the important basic obedience training to ensure he’s a polite, relaxed and confident dog wherever he goes.
Digby was bred by Dogs for Good’s own breeding scheme. The charity breeds from a small number of dogs who live at home with volunteers and given additional care and support by the charity’s puppy team. Dogs for Good trains mainly golden retrievers, Labradors and first crosses of the two as they tend to be the breeds most suited to working as assistance dogs. The charity has developed its own breeding scheme to help find pups with the right temperament and characteristics to become assistance dogs and all the pups and mum are regularly health checked and screened. Digby was part of a litter of nine pups, four of whom will stay with Dogs for Good while others have gone to become assistance dogs at other charities.
If all goes well with Digby’s puppy socialising, he will begin his formal training to become an assistance dog at around 15 months of age. Dogs for Good has a national training centre in Banbury, Oxfordshire where all Dogs for Good assistance dogs and community dogs receive around six months training before they are placed with a disabled child or adult or a child with autism to help them live life more independently.
Each year, Dogs for Good receives more than 2,000 enquiries from people who would like support from a trained dogs but currently the charity is only able to help a small proportion of those who would like assistance as they are reliant on donations and receive no government funding. Find out more about our work.
Yesterday, Tuesday 29th August, marked the end of four years of physical and mental preparation for Scott Baker, when he swam the English Channel in 14 hours and 11 minutes, in aid of life-transforming charity Dogs for Good.
Scott decided to take on this challenge back in 2013. At the time he had not swum for 25 years, did not own a pair of goggles and could only mange to swim two lengths. Since then he’s entered into the world of open water and marathon swimming to help him prepare.
This feat is even more impressive as Scott hoped to complete the challenge in 17 hours but beat his target by 3 hours and it’s worth noting that more people have climbed Everest than have swum the Channel. Scott had originally wanted to raise £5000 but he has now raised over £6000. All of which will go towards training a dog to help change lives.
Scott explains why he took on this gruelling swim:
“Over 100 years ago, my Great Nan trained hard to attempt to swim the English Channel. She was an excellent swimmer and spent much time sea swimming in preparation. The break out of World War One stopped her and she never got to make the crossing.”
“As a child I was a keen swimmer. My Great Nan always used to come to watch me; she was always up there on the viewing balcony watching as I went up and down, I can’t imagine how dull it must have been. I knew she was there, but I didn’t thank her for it at the time. I’ve thanked her now by doing what she was unable too and swam the Channel in her honour.”
“I am raising money for this fantastic charity because I know the difference having a dog can make to your life. I am amazed by how Dogs for Good changes lives and I want to raise money so they can help more people.”
Picture: Scott meets Instructor Becky and assistance dog in training Indi
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6pm on Friday 22nd September 2017 at Stowe Landscape Gardens, MK18 5EQ.
Join in with Dogs for Good on their exclusive twilight walk at the National Trust’s Stowe Landscape Gardens in Buckinghamshire. The Dogs for Good walk will be taking place at dusk after the Gardens have closed to the general public, so a unique opportunity to see the Gardens after the crowds have gone.
Those taking part will follow the gentle hour and a half route around the tranquil Octagonal Lake over the beautiful Palladian Bridge. Then take in the famous follies of the Temple of Ancient Virtue and the Temple of British Worthies where you can see if you can spot the hidden memorial to Fido the dog.
Everyone is welcome, with or without dogs and there is disabled access to all walks.
Arrive at 6pm for 6.30pm start. Tickets cost £10 and under-16s are free, tickets are limited and are only available until Tuesday 12th September 2017.
For tickets contact Yasmin on 07803 158001 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Find out about our challenge events.
Help transform lives: Meet the Team, Saturday 9th September at Coley Park Community Centre, Reading.
Life-transforming charity Dogs for Good is currently seeking new fundraising volunteers in the Berkshire area to help raise much needed money to train more dogs, as well as raising the profile of the charity in the county.
They are holding an Meet the Team session for people who would like to find out more about volunteering on Saturday 9th September from 10am – 12.30pm at the Coley Park Community Centre, Reading, RG1 6DW.
There will be an opportunity for those interested in volunteering to talk to Regional fundraiser Lisa and fundraising volunteers Stephen and Sandy. Stephen is also a client of Dogs for Good and will have his assistance dog Scott with him, so you can find out how the charity makes a difference to people’s lives.
Dogs for Good’s fundraising volunteers take part in a variety of activities, including attending local fundraising events, organising their own events such as craft fairs, dog walks and quiz nights and being trained to give talks about the Charity to local community groups.
It’s a great way to make new friends and learn new skills, give back to your local community and help Dogs for Good to train more dogs to support more people with disabilities. There is no minimum commitment and volunteers can choose activities to fit around their schedule.
Find out more about fundraising and volunteering.
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