Hello Again!

Needless to say this blog had taken a bit of a back seat but I’m going to do my best to get back to blogging with a focus on the reasons why I started this blog. I want to share more about local products, places, services and events as well as sharing training progress and tips.

So thought I would share a little catch up with what’s happening. Lots of exciting stuff and I hope to share some of the upcoming events and news with you guys.

Angus will be 6 months tomorrow on the 13th July and he has gone from a little cute pup to a handsome teenage doggy.

He attended his first dog show in May and although he didn’t compete, we met up with his father, it was so lovely to see him again.

Bonnie is getting on great, she has really taken on the big sis role and loves to play with Angus.

I’ve been helping out at dog and puppy training classes recently and even got to help teach a class with another assistant while the trainer was away at the IMDT conference.

I will be attending a Suzanne Clothier Seminar on 15th July. The seminar covers Relationship Centred Training and also Enriched Puppy Protocol. I’m super excited for a day of learning and can’t wait to see what new info and ideas I will take away from the seminar.

I will be taking a Practical Dog Training course with the same tutors that held the previous training course I completed. This is a 4 week course and will involve practical training with a local animal rescue centre’s dogs. I’m looking forward to gaining more experience with working with other dogs and it will be nice for the rescue dogs to get some extra enrichment and training too.

In August I will be attending a Tellington TTouch Workshop held by Jetta Reis. It will be really interesting to see the techniques and how I can apply them to my own dogs.

I am also doing the couch to 5k program as I entered the Waggy Races which is a 5k race where you run with your dog. I’ve entered with Bonnie and I’m hoping I can progress enough to jog the full 5k but we will see how my training goes!

Lots of exciting stuff ahead so hopefully I can share these with you guys!


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Introducing Angus .. finally!

We brought Angus home on Wednesday 8th March so I’m a bit late getting around to this! But between getting him settled, getting into a new routine (3 feeds a day, so many toilet trips and late nights/early mornings) and recovering from my daytrip to crufts (up at 4.30am after 3 hours sleep and back home at 8.30pm – was excellent but I was wrecked!) I finally feel able to write about him!

So far Angus has just slotted straight into our family without much hassle and stolen the hearts of all of us even including Bonnie! She loves to play bitey face with her little bro and she is doing really well with him. We are very proud of her as she is learning to share her space with him and this is the nervous, under socialised, resource guarder who is teaching him bite inhibition, body language and play. Don’t get me wrong she still has the odd moment of resource guarding that is a bit OTT, we manage all feeding, and she sometimes gets overstimulated but she is doing well and is easy to redirect –  we are not scolding her in anyway as we do not want to potentially create negative associations with Angus.

Angus’ training and socialisation is going really well. He is very steady and copes well with most situations so far, the things we most need to work on in terms of socialisation is passing cars, baths and sudden noises away from home. He is a smart pup that is doing really well with positive reinforcement training and is currently in the process of learning auto-attention (look into my eyes for attention/food etc), sit, down, stand, touch, rollover, recall, loose lead walking, pee on cue (piddle), go into his pen, go into house from garden and a basic fetch for fun. His house training is going well enough I think – he has only had one poop accident the first evening, 2 have been on the grass potty tray and others have been outside. The pee on the other hand is going slightly worse with more accidents but is improving as we know his routine better, I would say we have a success rate of about 80% with the pee which isn’t the worst I guess.

Smart pup #recall #puppy #roughcollie #roughcolliepuppy #positivereinforcement

A post shared by Angus and Bonnie (@angus_and_bonnie_collies_ni) on

He is such a lovely pup with a lovely character and personality. I am honestly so pleased we brought him home. It has been a huge adjustment and change of routine for us but he has slotted right in like he has always been part of the family and I love him so much already. He is growing like a weed and is noticeably bigger than since we got him so although I look forward to when his bladder is bigger I’m going to appreciate how cute and dinky he is for now!


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Our Future Family Member!

For those of you who don’t follow our social media you might have missed out that we had finally met our special puppy to add to our family. He is a tri colour rough collie puppy that was born on Friday 13th (unlucky for some but not for us!) and will be joining us in just over 2 weeks time and we couldn’t be more excited!

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Caring mum entrusting her little pup with me
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Content wee pup and delighted me!
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Think he will be happy enough with us 🙂

We are very lucky to have found such a wonderful breeder as we only wanted to support a reputable breeder that would carry out health tests, raise pups in the house and so on. While visiting we met both parents who were absolutely lovely and had wonderful temperaments. We have received weekly updates since his birth and have loved seeing him grow up and change week on week.

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5 weeks old and so adorable!
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It’s tiring work being this cute!

His registered name will be Caronlea Dark and Stormy and we’re pretty much set on Angus as his normal name. We though it quite fitting as it matches the rough collie Scottish heritage and because Bonnie’s name is Scottish in origin too. I genuinely feel so lucky to be adding such a lovely pup from such a good background to our family and can’t wait to start this next chapter in our lives!


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Tug-E-Nuff Dog Toys Competition

I thought I would share this awesome competition with you – enter for a chance to win over £500 worth of dog toys! We love Tug-E-Nuff dog toys so it would be great to win as we could choose a select few to keep then donate the rest to local rescues for the dogs to enjoy while waiting for their new homes.

If you want to enter using my referral link then please enter through this link. This means I will get extra entries for the competition if you enter through the above link.

If you want to enter without using the referral link then please enter by clicking the link from the Tug-E-Nuff Facebook post below.

https://www.facebook.com/plugins/post.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2Ftugenuffdoggear%2Fposts%2F1220064818069795%3A0&width=600&show_text=true&height=480&appId

I would definitely recommend checking out their products as we have a few of their toys that we love!


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2017 is here!

Hope you all had a lovely holiday period and we wish you and your family all the best in 2017.

We had a peaceful and quiet break which we mostly spent catching up on bits around the house and taking it easy. Bonnie enjoyed the fuss of Christmas presents as well as walkies, treats and naps!

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The snake was a clear winner from her gifts
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Hazelbank at the shore
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Fun and games at Hazelbank
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Our feathered friend
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Brown’s bay beach

Even the degus joined in on the festivities and had their Christmas hazelnut treat!

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For the new year I’m not one to make resolutions but I do like to set some general goals and also find it fun to look back on what I thought my priorities were in previous years and see how that has changed or if it has stayed relevant. So in no particular order here are my goals for 2017;

  • Continue training and socialisation with Bonnie
  • Continue learning about dog behaviour and training through self learning and possibly attend any local lectures, seminars etc
  • Add a pup to our family and raise it to the best of our ability
  • Be more adventurous – visit new places, try new foods, recipes and restaurants rather than sticking to old familiar, try new things in general
  • Live a healthier life – more water, veg, fruit and exercise, less processed and junk food

Do you have any goals or ambitions for this year? No matter what hope 2017 treats you well!

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Bonnie preparing herself for the adventure filled year ahead!

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Kimchi – newest degu in the family!

Today has marked a week since we brought Kimchi home from the Lisburn Pets at Home adoption section and I am so pleased to have brought him home. He is such a gorgeous degu with the funniest little personality. He was brave and adventurous as soon as he arrived.

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No fear at all and loves his grub!
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The other 3 boys were certainly interested in what was happening – how dare this newcomer come into their territory! xD

I thought I’d be a little sad and document all his “firsts” with us.

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First taste of herbs – he’s definitely a fan!
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First sandbath
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First crock – needless to say he loves them!
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First chill out on his homemade hammock

I have been having so much fun getting to know him and he certainly seems to enjoy getting to know us too, he’s an outgoing degu to say the least!

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I’ll just sit here while you weigh my food out
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Selfie time!
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My wee parrot on my shoulder
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We had an escape – like I said, he sure is adventurous!

And not to leave out the other 3 boys they are still doing well and getting on great!

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Curious little faces
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I wouldn’t be getting in you way of cleaning would I? xD

I’m so glad we brought our original degus home back in March 2014 as since then we now have had 5 degus and all of them have their own personalities and bring so much joy to our everyday life with their cuteness and silly antics ❤


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It’s been a while!

That was a bit of an unintended break to say the least! Rather than explain away my absence with excuses I thought I would post a little catch up and hopefully start posting more regularly again as I have missed posting as well as all the blogs I follow. Last time I was talking to you all it was Halloween and Bonnie’s 2nd gotcha day. Now it is the middle of December (where has this year gone?!) and this is a bit of what we’ve been up to;

Bonnie is still healthy, happy and generally loving life as usual! She is a big girl now and has free roam of the living room while we are out instead of being in her play pen – no accidents or destruction (yet anyway – fingers crossed!).

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Her wee cosy area – her play pen now protects the Christmas tree xD

We got her titre tested this year and her results came back positive and strong positive so she didn’t need any boosters.

We went on Holiday to Berlin for a week which was great and I really enjoyed myself – it was my first time abroad out of the UK so was very interesting! I might share some more photos at a later point. It was the longest we’d been away from our pets and I had really missed them all by the end of our trip so our next holiday will probably be a dog friendly place close to home so Bonnie can join in!
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We have started thinking about adding a second dog (a puppy) to our family! We have starting buying in a few things for a pup and we had gone to see Newt a 13 week old Border Collie at Dogs Trust but the timing isn’t quite right for us yet. We will continue to slowly buy in things for a puppy and get Bonnie used to the new items such as a baby gate, puppy’s play pen, toys etc and keep on the lookout for border collie pups in rescue centres with the aim of adopting sometime next year, most likely the first half of the year.

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Lovely Newt but unfortunately it wasn’t quite right for us

Before we had gone on holiday we had seen a lone degu with cataracts in our local Pets at Home adoption centre who was very sweet and we were totally smitten. Unfortunately as we were going on holiday we didn’t want to take her and then leave my partner’s mum with another degu to take care of while we were away. So we talked with a member of staff who said she would try to discourage people so as to keep her for when we got back, unfortunately for us but fortunately for the degu she was rehomed while we were away. Since then we have been looking out for a special lone degu to rehome and today we added Kimchi to our family! He is a total sweetie and I will probably post more about him soon when he is more settled but I love him already!

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He’s a confident little one ❤

The dog behaviour class finished up last week, all the assignments have been handed in and now I am eagerly awaiting my results! I have also been sporadically helping out at the dog classes and behavioural visits too when I can. I had my first scare working with dogs – a nervous dog snapped at my hand fortunately resulting in no damage except a slightly bruised ego but an important lesson learned!

Just as an end note is anyone else as unprepared for Christmas as us?! The only presents I have bought is the office's secret Santa gift and things for Bonnie xD


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Bonnie’s 2nd Gotcha Day!

On Monday we celebrated Bonnie being with us for 2 years! Although she was probably just under a year when we brought her home, for convenience sake we will say she is 3 years old now. We didn’t do anything extravagant to celebrate or buy loads of stuff for her as she had already been spoiled earlier in the year so we kept our celebration pretty simple. Apologies in advance for the photo quality but my camera seemed to be a bit foggy in some photos for some reason!

We started the morning with extra cuddles in bed then as an after breakfast snack Bonnie got to share some of my yoghurt – she loves yoghurt and blueberries so she really enjoyed this one!

I love that ear of hers! Also love how cute she is when begging contrasted with her looking so silly smushing her nose while licking out the yoghurt.

As we had to wait in the house for her raw food delivery we played about in the garden with the flirt pole and the Christmas rooster stuffy that she loves so much.

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Afterwards she proudly carried her catch into the house where she proceeded to de-stuff it!

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I didn’t do anything I swear!
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All that chasing and destuffing makes a dog tired!

After a nap she got her new Kong Squeezz Jel toy (which was recommended to me I believe by Liezel’s owner over at Owning a dog with anxiety) and had a ton of fun playing with it. The squeaker did stop working only a few hours afterwards which was slightly disappointing, although she still loves it and we can watch TV in peace so I guess that’s a win!

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Oooo what’s this?
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Ahhh I love it!

Soon after finally her Nutriment raw food package was delivered! This will keep her going  for quite some time!

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Poser!
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Sniffing all around the tasty food!

After packing away all the food we were finally able to go on our walk up the glen. It was pretty quiet out, we didn’t run into too many people and no dogs bothered us so it was a great and stress free walk 🙂
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The rest of the day was filled with cuddles and treats as we stayed indoors to keep away from the fireworks. She even dropped me off and picked me up at my class so she wouldn’t have to be home alone with fireworks or trick or treaters.
Overall we had such a lovely day filled with simple pleasures 🙂 I am so glad that we decided to bring Bonnie into our family as she has completely changed our life. Here’s hoping to many many more years together ❤

For last years celebrations check out our blog post and also this album of photos from the first year of Bonnie’s life with us on Facebook (looking back on them makes me a wee bit emotional!). I’ll hopefully get around to creating an albums of highlights from her second year with us as it’s so nice to look back on 🙂


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Our Degu Family

It’s been a while since I last posted about our little degu family so thought I would share some photos and something a bit different from dog training as it seems that’s all I can talk about at the moment!

Abel and the babies are still getting along brilliantly although they are definitely not babies anymore! I just can’t get out of the habit of calling them the babies haha. Abel and Azoth seem to be best buddies but they all get along great and I love sneaking in and seeing them all cuddled before they run to their cage door expecting their food!

The babies have definitely come out of their shells from when we first brought them home and they have such lovely little personalities. Durzo is very sweet and shy, Azoth is more confident and is very smart.

The babies coats have become so lovely too as they have grown, they are an agouti piebald colour and have white at the ends of their tails too. I think they are adorable although I love all degu colours! I hope in future to again have another full agouti degu like our Cain was. It’s been around 10 months since we lost Cain and it still hurts to think about him – he really was a special little man who was full of personality and charm and always made us laugh at his antics.

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Cain in his better days ❤

I am definitely glad we got Abel his two new brothers and that he is still healthy and happy. Abel is roughly 3 years old now and as you can see he is definitely the tamest of our degus and he especially loves his dad.

And because you all know I like a bit of training and enrichment for our pets here are our degus in training to push their little trolley/shopping cart.

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Aren’t they adorable, I love our little degu boys ❤


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