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Meg Heath supplies some very special dog leads to Linbee Dog Rehoming

Manchester Dog & Cats Home

Meg Heath Dog Leads owner Sarah Gleave often comes up with innovative creations and this time the dog rescue centre Linbee Dog Rehoming is going to benefit from 10 Kennel Evacuation Leads.

Sarah designed these dog leads in the aftermath of the Manchester Dogs Home fire in 2014. The fire shook a nation of dog lovers and being a kennel owner, Sarah re-evaluated her own evacuation procedure at Meg Heath Kennels. The lead was promptly covered against copying as nothing of its’ kind had ever been made before.

She thought “I need a dog lead that can be attached to anything and stored along the same principle as a fire extinguisher.” So the multi – length / multi – attachment KEL – Kennel Evacuation Lead was born.

Cost of materials

The cost of materials for this venture was very important to Sarah as the intention was to gift the dog leads 10 at a time to kennel based dog rescues who applied for help. Sarah says “I approached a UK supplier called Abbey England who very kindly donated a few 1000 metres of a yellow and black printed webbing and some 19mm nickel trigger hooks.” Meg Heath Dog Leads donated the rest of the fittings, the time & expertise to make the leads and the shipping for these very special & unique dog leads.

The Kennel Evacuation Lead is a lead that is designed to be attached anywhere and is essentially a long adjustable, double ended, double up dog lead made from a strong webbing with strong fittings. Its’ intended use is to be stored like a fire extinguisher to be available in an emergency evacuation of a kennel block to take dogs to a place of safety where they can be tethered safely (our advice under supervision where possible).

Sarah advises that the leads be used with care and for their intended use – for emergencies only. Check the trigger hooks periodically as damp will affect their use.

If you are a kennel based rescue and would like to benefit from the Kennel Evacuation Dog Lead then please contact Sarah by telephone on 01522 810150. You will be required to set up a link to Meg Heath Dog Leads from your centres’ website and share us on social media periodically.

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TOP 10 DOG PRODUCTS

TOP 10 DOG PRODUCTS THAT YOU SHOULDN’T BE WITHOUT IF YOU OWN DOGS!

TOP 10 DOG PRODUCTS starting with…..

  1. ALOE VETERINARY FORMULA

Aloe Veterinary Formula – £17.92 Amazon.

Very high proportion of Aloe Vera in the formula. When one of the family suffers a minor cut or abrasions,we reach for Aloe First. Well animals are part of the family too and now they can also experience the power of the ‘Miracle Plant’. So Reach for Aloe Whenever your Pets need its benefits. Aloe Vera has been shown to be effective in treating or alleviating a number of animal problems. preparations in dealing with ringworm,mud fever and contaminated wounds. Aloe Veterinary Formula is made with a high percentage of stabilised Aloe Vera Gel,used for its moisturising Antimicrobial action. It is ideally suited for cuts,abrasions,bruises,chafes,infections and other external animal problems. Allantoin, a proven activator in treatment of wounds,is the only other ingredients. The nozzle-control spray is a great feature,making application to any size or type of pet easy. Aloe Veterinary Formula can give quick relief-soothing,protecting and assisting the healing of wounds. Other products used by animal owners include: Aloe Vera Gel -To improve general wellbeing-use in conjunction with Aloe Vera topical preparations. Aloe Vera Gelly – For soothing wounds and inflamed areas and for protecting against further infection. Aloe Propolis creme – To help skin fight of infection. Ingredients: Stabilised Aloe Vera Gel,Allantoin. Directions: Cleanse with Aloe Liquid Soap and water, and apply Aloe Veterinary spray to affected areas. Bandage if necessary. For optimum results,apply several times daily or us as recommended by your veterinary surgeon. Always consult your veterinary surgeon before undertaking any treatment on an animal. This product is for external use only,and is not recommended for deep puncture wounds. Avoid contact with the eyes and other sensitive areas.2

2. VASELINE

Vaseline – Can be purchased from most stores, for example Tesco or your chemist. As your dog gets older they can suffer from a cracked nose, just put a little on the cracked area when required and your dogs nose will be restored in no time.

Details – Protects and locks in moisture to help dry skin restore

100% pure petroleum jelly. Triple-purified. Purity Guaranteed.

Gentle on your skin, hypo-allergenic and non-comedogenic (won’t clog pores)

Reduces the appearance of fine, dry lines

Helps protect minor cuts, scrapes and burns

Protects your skin from windburn and chapping

BEST FOR DRY SKIN, DRY ROUGH SKIN

3. SODA CRYSTALS – For emergency use only, use with caution and at own risk. This is my personal use and is merely a suggestion. Always consult a vet. Soda crystals can be used to induce vomiting for example when a dog has ingested poison or an item that is likely to cause death or extreme discomfort or pain. When a tablespoon of soda crystals are put down your dog’s throat it will induce vomiting and thus bring up the stomach contents. AGAIN I STRESS, ALWAYS CONSULT A VET. THIS IS NOT A REPLACEMENT FOR VETERINARY CARE.

4. COUGH MIXTURE – Again on this one, only to be given under the guidance of a vet. You can give the correct type of cough mixture to a dog to help ease the discomfort of nasty coughing with Kennel Cough.

5. A DECENT SET OF GROOMING TOOLS – The amount of dogs I see in Kennels who need grooming is disheartening, to say the least. A good comb is better than a brush, even for short/smooth coated dogs.

6. DOGGY TOOTHBRUSH & TOOTHPASTE

Product Description

Brighten and whiten your dog’s teeth, and freshen his breath with this ARM & HAMMER Advanced Pet Care Tartar Control Toothpaste and Brush Set. The enzymatic toothpaste is formulated with baking soda to neutralize odours, effectively control tartar and delivering complete and thorough cleaning. Use the dual-headed toothbrush and the finger brush to ensure that his teeth are fresh and clean.

Box Contain

1 x Arm & Hammer Dual-headed toothbrush
1 x Arm & Hammer Advanced Pet Care Tartar Control Toothpaste
1 x Arm & Hammer Advanced Pet Care Finger Brush

7. TICK REMOVER TOOL

Product Description

The shape of the O’TOM TICK TWISTER takes into account the tick’s morphology, it is adapted to any size of ticks and is really easy to handle. The O’TOM TICK TWISTER is made of an unbreakable plastic resistant to wear. The O’TOM TICK TWISTER can, therefore, be used indefinitely. While removing a tick, it is essential not to compress it, reducing the risk of saliva back-flow. A tick’s saliva

contains irritating substances and sometimes microorganisms that can lead to infections and allergies. Tweezers and other instruments exert a pressure on the tick. O’TOM TICK TWISTER does not compress the body of the tick. The tick’s rostrum (the part that is embedded in the skin and improperly referred to as “the tick’s head”) is covered with backwards-pointing spikes that allow the tick to “anchor” in the skin. By pulling up on the tick, the spikes will rise and lock the rostrum in the skin. The tick may break leaving body parts resting on the skin and causing a painful inflammation, or an infection. By twisting, the spikes bend into the axis of rotation, and the tick is easily removed, without traction, decreasing the risks of breaking the rostrum. The O’TOM TICK TWISTER does not compress the tick’s abdomen during removal, reducing the risk of transmission of diseases. The O’TOM TICK TWISTER removes ticks by rotation and not by pulling; decreasing the risks of breaking the rostrum.

Box Contains

Tick Twister Mini Grip Pack

8. SILVER NITRATE PEN –  Caustic Veterinary Pencil – use for example when a nail bleeds to stop bleeding.

9. EMERGENCY CAR KITspare leads, water, spare bowl, spare collar, slip lead, treats, a tin of meat and fork, harness, kibble and poo bags.

10. PRO KOLIN

 

This is amazing stuff. Use as instructed on the label or by your Vet.

Thanks for reading. This page is sponsored by MEG HEATH DOG LEADS & COLLARS. Please visit our pages and have a look at our products.

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HELP! My dog hates the Hoover!

HELP! My dog hates the Hoover!

Does your dog turn into a crazed individual when you try to clean up? I’ve cured a handful of dogs in my time who don’t like the vacuum cleaner and it is usually in just 2 sessions totalling less than 10 minutes.

Notes: I’ll hold my hands up, it really does make it easier if your dog is food motivated, I’ve never done it with a dog who was not food motivated. Most times I used a clicker but not essential.

Equipment needed:

  • Dog
  • Hoover
  • Treats in your pocket or tub set out of the way
  • Clicker or just your voice

How to:

Technique 1 (novice or inexperienced trainer)

  1. Choose a quiet room with no distractions
  2. You need your dog, Hoover, treats, clicker and you!
  3. Don’t switch it on, just have it in the room. The dog does one of the following:
    1. Lies down next to or near or just does nothing
    2. Looks at
    3. Sniffs
    4. Basically, you are looking for ‘no reaction’ or an inquisitive dog
  4. Identify a ‘no reaction’ behaviour and then either click & treat or say ‘good!’ then give a treat.
  5. Repeat.
  6. Then identify a behaviour that moves on from the last, so for example dog looks at Hoover, then dog sniffs hoover. Click treat for sniff hoover.
  7. Ideally, you would repeat the above and call it a day as session 1.
  8. Next day – repeat ALL of the above.
  9. At some point, you will be looking to switch the vacuum cleaner on but for now depending on how reactive your dog is, maybe move the pipe or carefully wheel the hoover about slowly.
  10. The key at every stage here is that you ARE NOT looking for a negative reaction, just positive behaviours as listed above, sniffing, looking etc.
  11. When you feel ready to move on, you can switch the hoover on but it just stays in situ. Repeat as above, so looking, nose bumps etc. Your dogs’ reaction will be individual to him/her.
  12. Do you see the picture now? At every stage you are moving sooo slooooowly that there is never a negative reaction to the hoover.

Technique 2 (experienced)

  1. The only thing I wanted you to do differently in technique 2 really is to teach your dog to nose bump the hoover and/or pipe. If you’ve clicker trained before and understand what you are doing then this is just like a hand touch, or object touching.

That’s it really. Have a go but remember the skill is in moving slowly so that there is never a negative reaction. You may even end up with a dog that LOVES the hoover like my Brock does, he will still touch the pipe now when I say ‘touch it’. He has never forgotten.

~ Sarah

 

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HELP! I have a jealous snappy dog!

Disclaimer: I am not a vet nor am a qualified trainer or behaviourist. What I do have is over 30 years practical dog training and behaviour experience. So do your research and if my example works for you then great. Always see a vet and a qualified and recommended behaviourist. This is just an example of one dogs’ behaviour in my pack…

The Story Of Maisie Jalfrezi…

Background – Maisie is a small crossbreed rescued from the streets abroad at the tender age of 4 weeks. The RAF family that took her in moved to the UK later in life and had a family. It wasn’t long before Maisie started to display certain behaviours tantamount to jealousy and insecurity. Maisie’s ‘dad’ contacted me as his wife could no longer tolerate Maisie and no longer wanted her. It was a split decision, but her ‘dad’ decided it was best to find her a new home. This is where I came in. I was contacted with a view to taking Maisie in and finding her a new home. I saw displays of Maisie’s behaviour quite early on and made a quick decision to keep her as she was only really suitable for an experienced home as her behaviour could easily have escalated in the wrong hands which would have been unfair on her meaning potentially she would have to return to me.

Anyway, we fell in love with her. On the day the decision was made to keep her, we had a collar upgrade ceremony, she was now the proud owner of a leather and brass half check. By then Maisie and Seb had become very close – we called her a daddies girl.

It is important to explain here that you can spoil 2 types of dog rotten, type one – the well balanced, secure, well-raised dog and type two the insecure, not so well balanced dog, Mais was the latter. The first type one dog will not change its’ behaviour and will be obedient and well behaved, type two dog when spoiled will as I say ‘go off the rails’. That said, behaviours such as growling, mainly insecure growling will be displayed.

This is where you will need an open mind and trust me that what I’m telling you now is not something I’ve been told by someone else nor read in a book, this is experience. Dogs are pack animals, if you don’t agree then I suggest you close this window now unless you are prepared to keep an open mind. Pack animal = hierarchy, whatever word you use, there will always be some kind of hierarchy among animals whether YOU like it or not. Don’t mistake the word ‘dominance’ for pack because it is not the same thing.

When you lavish a dog who is what I’ve called ‘the type 2’ they become quite shitty in their temperament. So for example to define ‘lavish’ these are things like allow on the bed, allow on the furniture, told / asked to do things and they ignore you, they barge through doors ahead or you, this includes anywhere you should go first, this includes getting out of a car, setting off on a walk – general manners. Think of these as PRIVILEGES. When you give a type 2 dog too many privileges, they don’t have a clue where they are in the pack and it is stressful for them. A dog is far happier being at the correct rung on the ladder rather than a falsely elevated one.

It is stressful for a dog to behave badly. When they have their status elevated by their owner and are aggressive as a result of this, they are not happy dogs. 

What we did with Maisie was simple

(Remember this is Maisie’s story. If you can identify then good, but I am writing about a specific case and all dogs are different. You can try certain techniques and see if they work for you.)

  1. The most important one – Not allowed on the bed. Noooooo, this was the biggest fail for Maisie as this privilege created a princess!
  2. Fed her separately because she had issues with being aggressive around food. I feed her first (not necessarily last as you might expect).
  3. Be more aloof around her, so not lavishing her with praise unless she deserved it.
  4. If she does creep upstairs and puts her paws on the bed as if to want to jump on, a stern “down” Maisie, gentle push if required, then sincere verbal praise for getting down and being a good girl.
  5. At night she is basically banished to the bottom ranks and sleeps in our conservatory. Here she is firmly reminded that bad behaviour will not be tolerated.

You know what? We have a new dog and I know she is happier with certain behaviour she NOW displays.

Good luck with your dog and please please remember that this is Maisie’s individual case and if in doubt consult your vet.

 

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HELP! I can’t get a pee sample from my dog!

Have you ever struggled to get a urine sample from your dog? 

Technique 1.

Have no fear, I developed a technique that has you covered as long as your dog will pee on a solid floor, for example relatively smooth concrete or slabs.

Equipment needed:

  • A tub (to put the urine in once collected)
  • Silver foil about 10 inches square (or thereabouts)
  • A syringe (optional)

Instructions:

  1. Have your tub and foil, syringe if you have one to hand.
  2. Take the dog out for a pee on concrete/slabs etc (vets usually ask for an early morning sample)
  3. Just had a thought, if your dog pees on pee pads you could wring it out?
  4. Go to said pee puddle and either syringe it up and straight into the tub or fold the foil over in half and lay the folded edge next to pee and using your hand (yes use your hands – man up!) and flick it onto the foil.
  5. Pick foil up off the ground in such a way that it holds the pee, now put it into the tub.
  6. Hey presto! You’re done.

Technique 2.

This is easy but most people struggle because they miss one vital technique and that is to use something flat like a plate otherwise how will you catch it with smaller dogs or bitches who squat low?

  1. Have the dog on a lead so you aren’t chasing him/her around.
  2. Get a plate, have your tub ready.
  3. Slide under and collect urine.
  4. Put into the container.
  5. Done.

 

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Dog Blogs

As I seem to be doing a lot of blogging just lately in the name of SEO, visitors and conversion tactics etc, I thought I’d do some research on other dog blogs, so here are a few copied from pages around the interweb.

Copied from http://www.alfiesblog.com/entlebucher-mountain-dogs-tips-training-humans/top-dog-blogs/ So full credit to them, thank you.

  • Blogpaws – bringing you nose to nose with social media FAVE!
  • All Things Dog Blog – All Things Dog Blogs goal is to help families with their “Life with Dog” problems. FAVE!
  • Bringing up Bella – Bringing up Bella is a journal of sorts about a beautiful, crazy, smart (and crazy-smart) rescue dog, Bella
  • Life with Desmond – Desmond David Jones Forge is a rescue greyhound-pit bull mix (with some pointer and maybe some plot in there, too)
  • My Brown Newfies – My Brown Newfies is a personal pet/lifestyle blog where Jennifer writes about her two brown Newfies, dogs, pet health, pet products, family, and totally crazy stories that only seem to ever happen to her and her dogs.
  • Tales and Tails – Greyhounds, a German shepherd and lots of great photos can be expected on this blog.
  • That Mutt: A Dog Blog – That Mutt is your place for info on dog training, exercise, nutrition, adoption and product reviews.
  • The Elka Almanac – one awesome dog blog about the Doberman Elka
  • The Poodle and Dog Blog – fun dog-related stories and Poodles, of course!
  • Very ViVi – some of the most gorgeous dog photos in Blogville.
  • 2 Brown Dawgs Blog – A blog about brown dogs (Chesapeake Bay Retrievers) who love going hunting with their humans.
  • BZ Dogs – Pawsome photos of two even more Golden Retrievers called Henry & Zachary.
  • Labrador Training HQ – Lots of good advice for training labrador doggies
  • Life with Beagle – Love Beagles? Then here’s your blog.
  • My GBVG Life – Emma, the Grand Basset Griffon Vendeén, loves to blog about her adventures and her photos are always extra special.  She has even written a book!
  • Pawsitively Pets – Love pets? Then you’ll love this cute blog written by former vet tech Ann Staub.
  • Sugar the Golden Retriever – Golden woofs from our favourite Golden Retriever girl who loves blogging about yummy treats, walkies and more!
  • The Misadventures of Misaki – The Alaskan Malamute puppy who is always up to some fun adventures!
  • Something Wagging This Way Comes – thoughtful, insightful and fun musings about the amazing bond between humans and canines.
  • Bongo Dog Blog – Bongo always finds something fun to write about on his trails
  • Gardening with Wyatt – Like gardening? Like Airedale terriers? Here’s your blog
  • Kol’s Notes – doggie DIY tips and fun stories from Kol the Puggle and his mama
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Dogs Teeth – Oral Health Notes

Now first thing’s first I am not an expert. I am not a vet nor anywhere near qualified. So please, if you have any concern about your dogs’s teeth, please please take them to the vets as a matter of importance no matter how old your dog is. I am a humble boarding kennel owner, so the reason for my post is frustration over seeing dogs, from time to time, come in with oral health that literally makes me cry.

Keeping teeth clean from the beginning

I honestly don’t think that the diet we feed our dogs on these days helps with oral hygiene. Good old teeth cleaning (yes with a brush and toothpaste specifically for dogs) and PROPER bones that are safe for dogs. By proper bones, I mean roasted knuckle bones or uncooked bones. Do not ever feed cooked bones as they splinter and may kill your dog. Again, please check with your vet to make sure the bone you want to give your dog is OK. Also, products like the Nylabone are good, they start off smooth but as the dog chews them then get a rough surface, obviously the latter techniques rely on your dog actually wanting to chew things.

Knuckle bones for dogs

Handling

Right from being a puppy or getting your new dog (the latter may be more challenging, of course, depending on their history) you need to get your dog used to being touched and examined around their mouth. It’s not natural for them to be prodded there. So from an early age make sure your dog is used to being handled, that goes for grooming too. I would use praise as the reward because if you try to use food rewards when examining the mouth, they might be more interested in getting the food than having their mouth examine. Use food however if you find it is beneficial.

When it’s too late

OK, you’ve spotted your dogs’ teeth are in a bad way, what do you do? Well, you take them to a vet as a matter of urgency. In my experience, when teeth have a lot of tartar, it is generally covering a lot more decay underneath. Do not be surprised if your vet needs to take out a few teeth. This doesn’t come cheap either but it does need to be done.

DO NOT LEAVE A DOGS TEETH WHEN THEY OBVIOUSLY NEED TO SEE A VET.

Some ideas for your oral health kit

Toothbrush x 2 – I have just found these on eBay and ordered a few in, so if you would like one, call at the kennels or call 01522 810150.

Toothpaste

Vaseline – for crusty noses! (Not oral but around that area and not many people know that thgis cures crusty noses).

Thats all folks, I’ll add more info later.

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Reflective Wear for Dogs – be seen be safe

Reflective wear for dogs, most people haven’t even thought of it but it is essential that you consider the safety of both you and your dog now the nights are starting to draw in. So what types of products can you buy to make you and your dog safe while out walking and what other safety measures can you take in the absence of any special reflective products.

Top suggestions

OK so here are my top suggestions for safe autumn and winter walkies!

  • A reflective dog collar – there are 2 types, reflective and flashing. You can save these for dog walks only and put them on as you prepare for your walk.
    Flashing Dog Collars | Be seen Be safe
    Flashing Dog Collars | Be seen Be safe

    The flashing type have a battery so probably best to use these just when you are actually walking the dog, they require a new battery when it dies and there is a chew risk that must be avoided, so keep collars stored out of doggies reach when not in use. The reflective type is literally just reflective material and show when the light is reflected from them but also reflect when the light is dull with no obvious light sources to reflect from as opposed to flashing all the time with the flashing type. I like both of these, and all good pet stores sell them. Do take care though as they are not made to be chewed or eaten.

  • Reflective dog leads and dog harnesses are also a good buy and as well as a collar or instead of can only be a good buy. Again these will be for walks only and should be stored out of harm’s way when not in use.
  • Flashing collar lights. These are great little products that can hang from the dog collar but due to the nature of the product they need a battery so as with the flashing collars, it is probably best to have spare batteries, so be organised and order extra.
  • Reflective dog vest. I think these are awesome. They are just light vests as opposed to coats.
  • Reflective dog coats. A more substantial coat with reflective qualities.

Safety for you the owner/dog walker – apart from the obvious hi-viz vest or flashing bands, here are a few examples of how to stay safe when walking your dog now the nights are drawing in –

High visibility dog vest - be safe walking your dog
High visibility dog vest – be safe walking your dog
  • Take a mobile phone with you making sure it is charDon’tenough
  • Dont bury your head in your phone while walking, stay alert
  • Tell someone where you are going and how long you intend to be or take someone with you
  • Arrange to meet with someone else to walk with
  • Walk in areas that you are unlikely to be alone
  • Remember that dogs are stolen by people who think they can just take them while you are walking them
  • Do not allow the young or vulnerable to walk in secluded areas for example alley ways that are unlit
  • Walk earlier in the evening. Easy while the nights are still light until 8pm but difficult while you are working and cannot get out for walkies until after dark
  • Walk around the streets instead of your usual walk through fields etc
  • Buy a rape alarm. These are relatively inexpensive. Test their use so you know how to work them. The best ones give out a high pitched nooice, an ultra
    rape alarm | walk safely with your dog this winter
    Rape alarm | walk safely with your dog this winter

    violet spray and a foul smell. But like I say test it first so you know how it works. The type linked here is one I have personally bought for staff in the past and for myself.

Thats about it really, as I think of more handy tips, Ill add them, but please stay safe while walking your dog and avoid dog theft too by following these tips. Do you own research too and STAY SAFE

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Extending Leads – Friend or Fo

Extending leads have their pros and cons.

My worst injury came from using one but then again they give freedom to dogs who would otherwise not be allowed off the lead, so used with care they are a good tool.

extending dog lead
Extending dog lead

This doesn’t account for accidents though. I was walking the smallest dog in the kennels, similar to in the image below. He darted out to full length and caught me unaware pulling me over awkwardly resulting in a very badly sprained ankle. We thought I’d broken it but I said let’s leave it till the morning. The ankle wasn’t broken but was very sore for a few weeks.

Tips

I’ve written up a few tips for using extending leads:

  • Use with care next to roads and keep them short.
  • Hold on to them tightly
  • When walking a boisterous dog, keep the arm holding the lead at a right angle (elbow bent) so you have some give in your arm.
  • If your dog pings to the end of the lead, hold lead as above but also cup your free hand around the front of the plastic bit to help when your dog reaches the end of the lead.
  • It is not recommended to use any type of head collar in case your dog pings to the end of the extending lead causing injury to its neck.
  • The same applies to collars with boisterous dogs.
  • Harnesses are useful but make sure it is properly fitted as the harness can come off.
  • Any collar designed to choke is not suitable for example full chain chokers and even half checks
  • As above all, learn how to use them, I find that the brand name ‘Flexi’ are the best ones, not the cheaper alternatives

Overall, take care, be aware and stay safe.

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Sarah Gleave Designs Kennel Evacuation Lead

Kennel Evacuation Lead

Sarah Gleave Designs New Kennel Evacuation Lead in Response to the Manchester Dogs’ Home Fire.

Ishbel Johnson of Abbey Saddlery writes a short feature about the reasons Sarah has taken on this project and what makes this safety lead different from other leads…Written 2nd October 2014

Abbey donates webbing to aid project.

3 weeks ago, The Manchester Dogs’ Home went up in flames. This heart-breaking incident took the life of 60 dogs and left many injured. The unfortunate incident witnessed a nation of pet owners coming together and offering aid through the means of financial donations and temporary homes. This phenomenal response has raised £1,456,809.24 for the Just giving Campaign organised By Manchester Evening News. Sarah Gleave is a Kennel owner from Lincolnshire and like many others, she was shaken by the dreadful news of The Manchester Dogs’ Home blaze. In response to the incident, Sarah has designed a safety lead to help assist evacuation of a kennel block with the intention of donating the leads to a number of dogs’ homes. This project has relied upon the donations from suppliers and sponsors so Sarah approached Abbey England asking for a webbing donation. This has been a great cause from the start and Abbey were happy to oblige.

What is your occupation?

Boarding Kennel Owner, Owner Meg Heath Dog Leads and DevDogz Web Design.

Please tell us about your project? 

The Meg Heath ‘Kennel Evacuation Lead’ was designed in the aftermath of the Manchester Dogs’ Home fire in September 2014. It followed a re-evaluation of my own fire evacuation plan that is a condition for Boarding Kennels in the UK and decided that my existing plan, albeit suitable, could be improved by designing a simple lead. I have however drawn up some guidelines for its safe & responsible use.

The kennel evacuation lead has been produced to be given free of charge to be used in Kennel based dog rescue centres in the UK as a means of safe evacuation and supervised tethering in the event of a fire. All materials have been donated and the cost of shipping has been covered by Sponsors. Supply requests are at the discretion of Meg Heath Dog Leads.

Why have you taken on the project? 

To provide a lead that rescues can use FOC in the event of an emergency to safely evacuate dogs from a kennel block.

What materials have you used? 

Webbing and trigger hooks.

How many leads are you making? 

As many as time and sponsorship dictates.

Who are you donating the leads to? 

3 kennel based dog charities in Lincolnshire to start with, then moving further afield.

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Kennel Evacuation Lead – KEL

The Kennel Evacuation Lead (KEL) was inspired by the Manchester Dogs Home fire. The concept was to design a lead that is essentially treated like a Fire Extinguisher, stored with easy access in the unlikely event of a fire.

A Multi-function Lead

The lead is multi-function and is designed to be secured around trees and to fences. We generally give these away to rescues (maximum 10 per organisation) but the public are also able to buy these. If you are a rescue please call 01522 810150 to request some of our KEL leads.

We are in the process of protecting the design against being copied, we will update the page when this is through.

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Making dog leads for a living

Making dog leads for a living – So just over 10 years on and I’ve hit a pretty major milestone in my self-employed career. I’ve been making dog leads for 10 years now and loved [mostly] every minute of it. My sewing machine had its first ever service last month (yes first ever), I finally figured out how to understand the stitching faults the machine was throwing up sometimes, thanks to Julian Kidd who came out to give her a little service and educate me in how to thread the darn thing up properly.

Disappointed

Unfortunately having spent £500 on a new WordPress website and being told nothing would change, I’ve battled with a decline in sales. My partner and I sat here on a Saturday afternoon going through sales figures since 2009 and being a wiz with Excel, Seb did some figures and calculations for me which doesn’t look pretty, so onwards and upwards, I’m doing my best to rebuild her and make Meg Heath Dog Leads better than Facebook business page – big mistake. You live and learn and if you don’t make your own mistakes you don’t learn do you, so again, onward.

Update: WOW, a bit of SEO work thanks to the Yoast plugin and LOTS (and I mean lots) of research into marketing strategies and my sales have, shall we say, INCREASED. I am now on a mission and not wanting to share my secrets with my competitors I have my work cut out for next week. I’ll give you a clue – Competitor Research! That’s all I’m saying.

Anyway best go and make some dog leads. Have a look at my Design Protected Car Safety Boot Lead at www.megheathdogleads.co.uk

~ Sarah