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Author Archives: Moira

Its that time of year again…

With the weather feeling very spring like, its the time of year to think about protecting your dogs against fleas and ticks.

Lots of  people coming to France are not aware that many of the French ticks carry a parasite known as Piroplasmosa Canis, which causes a potentially fatal canine disease called piroplasmosis or ‘piro’. These ticks are more active in warmer, wetter weather, so spring and autumn tend to be the danger periods.

So, what are the symtoms of Piro?

Different dogs react to the infection in different ways, and symptoms will differ according to the individual dog and the stage of the disease, but the most common signs are:

  • lethargy and loss of appetite
  • fever, shivering and elevated temperature
  • dark urine
  • anaemia (to test for this, press a finger against your dog’s gum. When you release the pressure, the blood should return immediately. If the spot stays pale for a few seconds, it can indicate a problem).

Dogs bitten by an infected tick typically start to show symptoms within 24 – 48 hours, and the disease can be rapidly fatal. The dog’s kidneys try to filter out the infected blood cells, and are themselves damaged in the process. It’s important to catch the disease as quickly as possible to limit the possibility of kidney damage, so play it safe and take your dog to the vet.

How can you prevent Piro?

  • If your dog is long-haired, keep him trimmed and well-groomed. The best prevention is to find and remove the ticks before they can bite. All French vets and pharmacies sell a tick removal tool.
  • Wait several days after bathing your dog before applying the anti-tick treatment, and don’t bath him for a couple of days after application.
  • Make sure the treatment is applied directly to the skin, not the hair.
  • Keep a close eye on your pet.

In addition to applying the anti-tick treatment, we also advise ia Scalibor anti-tick collar. This is impregnated with an active ingredient that gives six months of protection, and can be used with the Advantix without fear of overdosing to give maximum protection.

If you catch the infection very early, there should be no long-term consequences.  In 80 or 90 percent of cases, dogs develop a degree of natural immunity after being bitten. This means that most dogs have the disease once, then never again.

So prevention with Advantix, a Scalbor  collar and quick action should you notice the symptoms, keeps your dog safe and sound.

Check regularly for ticks 


Adoption of Dagobert….

I am sure that our followers will be just as relieved as me that puppy Dagobert has been adopted. We bombarded every social media site possible appealing for a family for him. We certainly were not going to let this little pup grown up in the refuge!

Dagobert, that last of the Famous Five litter to be adopted!

Pups that grow up in the refuge are at a big disadvantage to those in a family. Careful socialisation is everything and without it we are relying on adopters to play catch up when they adopt. Sometimes this is very easy but often its not and that is why we do everything within our powers to ensure that doesn’t happen.

Remember socialisation is not just playing with other dogs, its getting out and about in town, getting used to busy public areas, meeting other animals such as cats, chickens, horses or sheep. Many dogs who have been undersocialized are terrified walking through the town with all the traffic and strange noises.

If you want a dog that you can take everywhere you need to put the work in and socialize them to these situations.  With my first pup I had him walking around town, in every restaurant and shopping centre that allowed us, at the airport, on a train and bus….the list is endless, but thats what you need to do. I did make one big mistake in that I forgot to teach him to be home alone. Big mistake! Luckily the addition of another dog helped him through this but you learn on your feet with your first pup and I was very lucky not to have ended up with a dog with separation anxiety!

With spring in the air this is a great time to get a pup and get it out and about. Keep an eye on our facebook page for the next litter……I am sure that it will be very soon.



Adoption of Myron

When 18 month old Myron arrived at the refuge he was a timid, scared boy. How he has changed in just a few months! Today he left as a bouncy, happy boy with a couple who are friends of one of our volunteers from Quillan, so we are bound to have lots of news. What’s more, they have had many spaniels so know the breed. As I was putting him in the car I saw lots of walking poles and thought, keen walkers. just what a energetic spaniel need!

Myron adopted!

Knowing the breed of dog that you are adopting is very important. I am a lazy dog owner and like labradors. Of course they have had years of training, all dogs need training but I like to come to the end of my walk with two dogs beside me rather than be scouring the countryside for a dog who has gone off on its own adventure. Each to their own when it comes to dog breeds!

You will all be relieved to hear that puppy Dagobert is reserved!  With any luck he will be leaving tomorrow.

I am sure that we will have another litter very soon so if you are after a specific breed do let us know. On a day to day basis we never know who will arrive, and we have people looking for Westies and Pekingeses, they don’t come into refuge very often but you never know!





Adoption of Reglisse and news of Helda…

When we mentioned that the three pups Othello, Only and Oslo had been adopted yesterday we never said that we also had their mum at the ScPA too!

However she didnt have a long wait and today she left for a great new life and as she has now been sterilised there will certainly be no more unwanted pups!

Reglisse adopted!

We also had news of how Helda was setting down.  It is a big change for this girl who has never lived inside. She chose to lie on her comfy new bed by the door. She will soon follow the other family dog Atlas and realise how much nicer it is indoor to outdoors!

She also had a visit to the beach today, everything is a first time experience for this girl  but she is in very safe hands!

Helda – on her beach walk.

When a dog is adopted it can be very worried, especially if the new home is very different from the last. First of all it is full of adrenaline and wonders if this is somewhere it can be safe. It can take a good few weeks before it begins to relax and appreciate its new life. Routine and consistency work wonders and of course love and patience!

We really do love getting news of our dogs after adoption and don’t forget that we can advise should you encounter any settling in problems too!

A home for Dagobert?

Dagobert is the last pup from the famous five litter.  He is a 9 week old beautiful setter cross and we hate the idea of him being left and growing up in the refuge.

We know his mum was a setter and we think that his Dad may have been a spaniel or collie.

He has the most gorgeous marking sand is such a happy, joyful pup who will make a fantastic family pet.

If you could give Dagobert a home then please get in touch.

Adoption of Helda, Freddy and three pups..

This morning, before the refuge was even open, we had the adoption of Helda. This 6 year old German Shepherd was bought at pet store as a pup but spent most of her life neglected at the bottom of garden.  She arrived at the SPA in November 2017 and had little interest until a family moved to the area last year. They were renting at first but wanted to wait until they were in their own house before taking Helda. They visited her many times, taking her on outings, getting to know her and making sure that she got on with their dog. And today off she went!

For Helda the best years of her life have just begun and she really does deserve this chance, so a massive thank you to Vasuki and family!

Helda, adopted!


Readers of yesterday’s blog will remember  that it was all about our teenagers and today lucky Freddy left! This really is fantastic news for this young lad who has basically grown up at the refuge. Be happy Freddy, enjoy life in a family!

Freddy, adopted at last!

We also had the adoption of three tiny pups. They didnt even make it onto facebook before they were reserved.  If you are looking for a small or specific breed do complete our pre adoption form and we will give you the heads up when one arrives!

Puppy Othello adopted!

Only adopted!

Oslo adopted!

Five adoptions is fantastic news but we still have puppy Dagobert from the famous five litter waiting on a family. We know that there has to be a first and last to leave but its so hard for this gorgeous little boy.  If you are thinking about a pup please think about offering him a home, hes a great pup!

Dagobert is still waiting!


Spot light on our teenagers…

We all know that pups should be socialised, taken out and about, introduced to lots of people and situations but not all pups are that lucky! Some are taken as cute puppies and as they mature are ignored, allowed to roam and arrive at the Scpa as teenagers who have had little training.

Some pups arrive with us and we have no interest in them and they end up as teenagers with us.

However these dogs end up with us they are the hardest to find adopters for. One reason for this is that these dogs are under exercised and as people walk around the kennels they go mad in their kennels jumping and barking to get your attention. Now we know that these dogs are usually great once they are out of the kennel but from a prospective adopters point of view you can understand their initial reluctance! What we must remember is that these dogs have all been let down by humans who took on the responsibility of a pup and then just couldn’t be bothered when they realised pups grow and don’t train themselves!

So here are a few of our teenagers who really need homes but are fantastic dogs. With a little time, patience and training will be fantastic family dogs.

So first of all meet Loubi, a medium sized griffon cross. He is a super boy who loves people, dogs and life in general.

Loubi,9 months old!

Next we have Nikita. a stunning girl with a really soft nature. She is a real beauty with her shiny black coat and sparkling white teeth!

Nikita – 9 months old!

Or how about Zebuline a berger x sharpie, again a lovely natured happy girl. she really is  a head turner and so sweet natured.

Zebuline – i year old!

Then there is Freddy who has been with us since he was a young pup. What a shame that he has only know refuge life! He loves people, craves attention and loves playtime in the park.

Freddy- ! year old!

These are only 4 of our many teenagers. Please give then a thought when you come to visit!


Adoption of Karadoc….

Well today has been a cold miserable day so when the refuge messaged to say that our  DRC sponsor boy Karadoc had been adopted it certainly cheered me up!

Kardoc arrived in August as a stray and why its taken so long for him to be adopted is anyone’s guess. Perfect on the lead, calm, very human oriented…what more could you ask for?

Karadoc adopted!

So no more cold concrete kennel for him and now we will just have to choose February’s sponsor dog!

The aim of the monthly sponsor is to give a dog regular social media updates as well as get him out and about and socialised.  It really does make such a difference but with 100+ dogs its impossible to do it with everyone.

Lets hope that this week we can get more dogs out of the cold and in front of cost fires!

Feel sorry for our dogs in cold kennel?   Its not to late to donate to our ‘Hot Dog’ challenge. You can do this by clicking on the link below and then clicking on the donate button. The more donations that we get the more heat lamps we can install and run!








Help us with our ‘Hot Dog’ challenge….

As many of you know we have concrete kennels and in winter they get VERY cold. As most of our kennels are outside it’s a terrible struggle to keep the dogs warm. Of course, they have a cosy blanket but even so its very tough for the young, elderly or more delicate dogs.

Last year DRC had a good year fundraising, so we have paid for the installation of heat lamps in some of the kennels and some more are ordered. This means that many dogs are cosier this winter than last.

These lamps are very clever and are programmed to come on automatically as the temperatures plummet.  If we say the worst of the winter is 10 weeks long, it only costs about 30 euros per kennel to keep a dog warm!

We would like as many warm dogs as possible and if this is successful, we will add more lamps as funds allow.

If you would like to sponsor a kennel you can do so by sending 30 euros by paypal to website@dogrescuecarcassonne.co.uk or a  cheque made out to ScPA Carcassonne, Chemin de la SPA, 11000 Carcassonne.


The story of Dylan McMullen…

Dylan came to us last year in the autumn.

We picked him out just by looking at the pictures on internet and then we just know that’s him.

So one day we went there asked for a walk with him together with Moira, he was pulling a lot on the lead but very happy to come out for a walk made no physical contact.

I watch him play with another dog in a fenced in area it was a full on play between two equally sized dogs, and I manage to exchange some words with the trainer in French.

I soon understood that Dylan was one of his favourite dogs.

My husband and I stood and looked at Dylan playing and agreed that this felt right so we signed for Dylan but we said we needed a week before we got him to fix things at home.

I also took the trainers phone number.

The day we picked Dylan up we had no long line for him so Vincent (trainer) gave us an old one so Moira took a photo of us and then we went to the lake in Carcassonne me and my husband and a friend of ours.

We took a long walk Dylan loved to play in the water but not swim. I sat in the back seat with Dylan strapped in the whole way he lay in my lap. We got back home and he looked at everything in the house.

Every walk we did he pulled a lot and was very nervous and had diarrhea.

He also reacted when the fly squatter came forward as if I was going to hit him the same reaction with the broom.

So then I texted Vincent and ask if he could help us with Dylan.

Vincent came around 10 times once a week, Dylan was so happy to see him and he trusted him.

We worked on different things together. To make him not to pull, stay, sit, lay down, and not eat food in the park. We manage everything exept for the food in the park.

I always talk to my dogs I believe they understand a lot of people laugh when I tell them but then I was at a conference in Sweden and listened to a professor who proved that a dog has an intelligence of a 5 year old and can understand 1500 words. I use a combination of words and signs when I communicate with him cause some days if it’s a lot of stress that day I just use signs so he does not hear the stress in my voice.

After about 6 months Dyland behaviour changed, he was calmer but then he begun to guard me and at the same time show that he did not trust other people so I had to do a lot of training in those areas we decided to go to Jorg Limacher so we went once a week and Dylan made a lot of progress.

We don’t know Dylans age or breed but we guess he is around 3 years old and are a cross of groendal, labradour and something else. He is black 30 kg.

He is a very clever dog, loves to be near the family but he does not like cats.

People who are friendly and doesn’t touch him no problem. If we introduce him to other people in our home he wants to get a cuddle but not before.

Other dogs no problem so far.

We also took the decision to bring a puppy in the family so we got a mini schnauzer a male, what a great decision Dylan loves Prince and they have so much fun together its like Dylan grew up and got a better self confidence with a puppy in the house.

Before we had dogs in the family then we had a Maremmano abruzzese , and a Tervuren, schnauzer.

The other day I came back from a walk with Dylan and my door is in an alley and two drug addicts came towards me and I could feel it’s a problem here. So I said to Dylan stay and stood still and these men came up and starting to complain about me standing between them and the dog and they just  asked  for trouble.

So I just waited until they stopped talking all this in French which I am not fluent in.

After a couple of minutes they started walking away and me and Dylan was just 3 meters from our door so I moved towards the door to go in then the one of the guys change their mind and turned around and was moving very quickly and in a threatening way towards me but he got stopped in the air by Dylan who just screamed and jumped up in the air with open jaw and slammed them in front of this guys nose.!