Here's wishing all Dorset Dogs' human and canine members a very wonderful Christmas & New Year, resplendent with wintry walks, cosy snuggles & your favourite treats - whatever those may be!
2013 has been a special year
We now have more than 1000 members, a revamped website with ever-growing 'out & about' pages and a lively Facebook page; we've made many new friends and are looking forward to all the work already being planned for 2014 to make sure that we can really enjoy Dorset with our dogs!
Now's the time to send in photos
Now's the time to send in photos from 2013 to go on our 'Year of the Dog 2013' feature page in the New Year - they don't have to be posed (though they could be if you prefer) and could be of you and your dog or just of your dog in a favourite place or relaxing at home - whatever you like - it would be great to have some more of humans & dogs out and about!
Have you already seen this newsletter?
All members who gave an email address when joining have been emailed a shorter version of this newsletter, so if you haven't received it we may not have an up-to-date email address for you? If you'd like to receive the newsletter (probably 4 to 6 times a year) then please feel free to send us your latest email address. I've had about 68 'mail delivery failure' messages so I know we've got some old addresses we need to update?
Dorset Dogs Festival 2014
We're waiting for venue confirmation, but a likely date may be Saturday 14th June so pencil that one in your diary for now.
Callis Corner offer www.calliscorner.com/pet-corner - Don't forget that Jodie offers all Dorset Dogs members 10% off her pet paw print jewellery & mementos, her deadline for Christmas orders is 13th December.
Many land managers who work with public spaces are now aware that people are keen to see more securely fenced places where dogs can run safely off-lead and there's hope that new projects in the pipeline will take this into account and increase the provision of well-fenced areas.
Securely fenced sites for sole use hire for training and exercise are proving to be tricky to find but we'll keep trying; it would make a real difference to many of the people who have been in touch about this. Enquiries have been made to land agents, farmers and site managers and we will continue to pursue it.
If you would like to be added to the list of people who would be interested in being part of a group of Dorset Dogs members contributing a monthly fee towards hire of a well-fenced site in exchange for a number of sole-use weekly sessions email firstname.lastname@example.org. Likewise if you know of or can offer a securely fenced site - it could be a field, a brownfield site or compound, even a redundant tennis court or playing fields - let us know? We may explore the possibility of installing fencing if we can find a site that is otherwise suitable too?
Don't forget you can pick Dorset Dogs pick-up bags up from quite a few different outlets now - take a look at the 'information' page on the website to find out where.
New members if you haven't received your packs yet don't worry - the postage elves have had an unfeasibly fulsome festive flurry of new members - it's not that you've been forgotten! Have you explored the website yet? There are new information pages, 'out & about' pages and November new members have just gone live! Have you read the amazing story of 1000th member Charley the rescued Dubai desert dog yet?
Hillside's First Aid for dogs evening
After the success of the first one, Hillside vet Karen has kindly offered to do another evening presentation on dog first aid for us, so pencil in the evening of 27th January 2014 and let me know if you're interested in booking your free place (sadly not enough room for dogs to come too!). It will be at Corfe Mullen, roughly starting at about 5.45pm but we'll confirm time in the New Year. If you'd like to book, contact me at email@example.com.
Finally, thank you all for getting involved - whether that's coming along to the annual Festival or pit stops, chatting on Facebook or simply joining Dorset Dogs and using the website.
Thank you too to all of the vets, trainers, photographers and all of the other dog organisations and businesses who have voluntarily worked with us over 2013, it really has been a special year and we're looking forward to blossoming even further into 2014.
Wishing you all the very best of festive wishes