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Latest News

Rabies reminder…

For those you who travel with your dogs and have a passport, your dog will have had their rabies vaccination.

Previously, those dogs vaccinated in the UK were lucky enough to only need the vaccine every three years but those in France, annually. This was changed about 18 months ago but is still causing confusion.

Rabies vaccines are manufactured by Nobivac, Versican and Rabisin to name but a few. In France the length of recall now differs depending on the vaccine used.

If your dog has previously been vaccinated with Rabisin R, its next vaccine will last three years in France. Its really worth noting that most of the other common rabies vaccines are still 1 year.

Have a look at my dogs passport. You will see that he had Rabisin R on 13/2/14 which lasted until 13/2/15. When re vaccinated on 13/2/15 the same vaccine now lasts 3 years! Both vaccines were at my local vet in France.

If you look at your dogs passport and don’t see the Rabisin R vaccine sticker it may be worth speaking to your vet about changing the vaccine used so that you only need to vaccinate every three years. This means less money spent and less chemicals in your dog!

In France its not only dogs that travel that have a rabies vaccine. Some people elect to have this to protect their dogs against rabies and others to protect themselves and the dog should it bite anyone.

Any dog that has bitten a human must be evaluated by a vet.  Three visits are necessary, the first within 24 hours of the bite a second visit after 7 days and a third at 15 days.  After 15 days the vet will (assuming no risk) issue a certificate in triplicate declaring the animal free from rabies.  If it has had its rabies vaccine the papers can be issued right away!

So check your passport, speak to your vet and you should be able to vaccinate every three years.




Two adoptions to end the week

We had two adoptions today and with plenty of volunteers, including several new ones, it was a great way to end the week.

First to leave was Monbo. He is a fabulous looking braque who has been with us for one month precisely. That is a suprisingly long time for a dog this pretty, but as we have said on numerous occasions, sometimes the choice of dogs is just so overwhelming that dogs are overlooked. Monbo left wearing a new harness and a big smile on his face.

The second dog to leave was one of those miracle adoptions that take place from time to time. Globo has been the DRC urgent appeal for a couple of weeks, and although a lovely couple saw this and came to see him on Thursday, by that time he was already reserved! Yes, despite the fact that this old boy has arthritis and gets short of breath, we had not one but two families wanting to adopt him! If only all our oldies were this lucky!

In fact the couple who adopted Globo came to the refuge looking for a medium sized middle aged dog. But the heart goes where the heart goes, and when they saw Globo they just couldn’t resist. This is why it is always worthwhile doing a tour if you are able.

We had a new arrival, three year old Flash. He is a foxy cross and is sure to appeal to many of you. Come and take a tour in person or online. You just might find your own Manbo or Globo!











big cane corso










New arrival Flash

tircoluoured dog with beard


Adoption of Pirate and Layna

Last night while many of us were ensconsed in a room dealing with the formal side of things at the SPA’s Annual General Meeting, an adoption was taking place!

Pirate had been in foster care with volunteer Isa since his arrival 10 days ago, and his new family was very keen to collect him. Isa missed his departure, as she was at the AGM, but her husband was able to give the obligatory goodbye cuddles as this lovely beauceron cross left for his new life.

There was an adoption today, too, that of lovely Layna. She was brought in towards the end of August and rather strangely was already identified as being a staffie cross, and hence a “dangerous dog”. The laws are very specific about such things, and it was clear to all of us that Layna had been misidentified. The SPA vet was happy to “downgrade” her, and she left happily today, just as any other dog. No need for special courses, no need for insurance, no need to be muzzled. Lucky Layna!

In other good news, many of you who have visited the SPA will have seen the so-called Mascot, Scotch, who is diabetic. He is young, but blind and very ill with ever more frequent fits. His life at the SPA is fine, but of course his evenings and Sundays are lonely. No more! As of now he spends the hours when the SPA is closed in the loving care of secretary Carole and family. Many thanks to them. Everyone adores Scotch and finally he will really know it!

Pirate – ADOPTED. Many thanks to Isa and her family
puppy holding tennis ball in mouth










Layna – ADOPTED 
black and white specked dog









Scotch – still the SPA mascot, but now with a life of luxury in the evenings

very hairy collie type dog

Adoption of Valmi

Today was a busy one at the SPA, with lots of walks, an adoption and several reservations. Three to my certain knowledge, and it looks like a couple more are in the pipeline.

Today’s lucky dog was Valmi. This young lad arrived in mid August already identified. However all attempts to find his owners failed, and so the SPA has no choice but to find him a new home. Valmi has gone to a home with another dog and young children, so he will have plenty of ways to expend some of his incredible energy. Oh, and he will have an enclosed garden too. That will feel like paradise to this lively young boy who has spent two months behind bars.

An early blog tonight as both Moira and I are about to leave for the SPA’s Annual General Meeting. Normal service will be resumed tomorrow.

black and white scruffy dog

Save a senior…

Today we had two reservations which isn’t bad for a rainy Wednesday afternoon. Both were recent arrivals, one an adolescent and the other a pup. Both will be leaving over the next few days.

This morning we had word from Twilight to say that Fred was settling in well and my thoughts turned to our other oldies in the refuge.

I am not quite sure whether they struggle most with the extreme heat of summer or the freezing cold of winter but life is a concrete kennel is very hard for them. With one walk per week all they live for is a kind word, a cuddle or some tasty treats from the volunteers.

There are many conversations with adopters about the age of the dog that you should adopt but most feel that if you adopt a younger dog you will have less vet fees and will have the dog longer.

Well you might…but no dog come with a guarantee.  There is no guarantee that a two year old will live to be 15 or that a 10 year old will only have a couple of years. And at some point your young dog will be older and you will have that cost anyway.

Some of our older dogs are very fit and healthy and have no ongoing vet costs. If they do have ongoing costs then they can often leave under FALD..foster of long duration. This is a great scheme where by the dog is yours for its lifetime but it comes to our vet and we pay the bills. This means that you have no vet bills if you are kind enough to take one of these oldies!

Older dogs have so much to offer. They are usually housetrained, easy to walk and a 20 minute totter around the park a couple of times a day is enough for them. They make instant, loyal companions…..all they ask for in return is a bed and affection.

So lets look at some of our oldies…and see if we can get them a home before winter.

Kipnak..Why this lovey boy has not been adopted I don’t know! He is 12.5 years old but you wouldn’t think it. He  loves his walks and other dogs…hes a really easy older boy in great health.


Larsouille..At 13.5 years old he is our oldest resident. A lovely older gent who just wants a  bed to call his own and a garden to potter in.


Claudius..Ten year old Claudius has not had an easy life. He is in desperate need of tlc and a warm bed before winter


Balou..A ten year old lovely griffon cross who is fine with some other dogs. Hes an affectionate, easy to walk boy!


Once a Flatcoat lover always a Flatcoat lover…

When its too hot to do much walking I often have a walk around the kennels giving out treats and saying hello to the newbies. About two weeks ago I was doing just that when I came across Lotus, a lovely 3 year old Flatcoat boy.

I have to say my heart skipped a beat as I do love Flatcoats and I know quite a few real doggy lovers who are fans of this breed. I took some photos and sent them to a lady who I know has a Flatcoat and has lots of doggy lovers as friends in the hope that we could find him the perfect home.

This lady adopted Pepper ( ex Flavie)  from us about a year and a half ago so has two dogs and had no intention of having a third but when she saw his photo it didn’t take long to get back to me to say that that they would in fact adopt him. Although that hadn’t been my intention I wasn’t a bit surprised!

Next we had to test him with cats as there is a 15 year pussycat in the household and we certainly wouldn’t want him stressed, so off he went for a cat test but no problems there, he was fine! Only one more thing to see to before he was good to go and that was castration. After a visit to the vet on Thursday he was then ready for his new family!

This afternoon, on their way home from holiday they stopped by the SPA, introductions went well with doggies Tally and Pepper and off he went!

To be adopted after two weeks in kennels is very lucky and to go to such a special home even more so!

I am sure that we will have regular updates and pictures..maybe even a Life After The Refuge story too!

Not long after Lotus left, Harley also left. The family who adopted him came along to meet him at last Sundays open day. They have no other dogs or cats and their previous dog was a Rottweiler so they are used to handling large breed dogs. They have an enclosed garden and understand that Harley, like all of our youngsters really need time, patience and training. This really is great news for Harley as he had been adopted from us as a happy pup after being in  foster with a volunteer. Its a fact that young males are statistically more likely to come into refuge and stay there the longest!

Parvo has unfortunately reared its ugly head again. A pup left at the gate had to be rushed to the vets as it was in a sorry state. Our vets are very experienced and we hope that the pup will pull through.  Dumping a pup with parvo at the gate really puts all of our dogs at risk. Reception had to be disinfected as did the vet van and cage. It could be of course that someone found a sick pup and thought it better to bring it to us. If you do find a dog who needs immediate vet care..take it direct to any vets. That way they get the care that the need and our other dogs are not put at risk.

Lotus saying hello to his new family,,,




Three adoptions!

From the time I left the refuge yesterday until I arrived today we had three adoptions! One of them was Jingo who was being cat tested as I left. He passed with flying colors so this lovely 2 year old berger cross left with his new family!

Next to leave was Ibis, a one year old levier cross followed by Flight a 2 year podenco cross. Both Ibis and Flight have one to live with the same family although not in the same household. That leaves one reservation from yesterday that you will hear about later in the week.

Today we had a visit from a couple who traveled from Brittany to meet us. When Terry and her husband moved to Brittany they knew that they wanted to extend their family. They came across our website and facebook page, liked it and started following the stories about our dogs and cats.

Lots of people see a dog on our site and after a long chat we have the dog transported to them but for Terry and John it was important that they met the animals and us before choosing their furry friends. Although their remit filled our heart with joy..two dogs and 2 cats, it was always going to be quite a task finding two dogs, small to medium sized who got on together, didn’t pull on the lead and were ok with cats! That would have been a big ask but I am happy to say one dog and two kittens were reserved!

The said dog and two kittens will be transported at the end of the month to Brittany.

When choosing a dog there are lots of things to consider…

  1. Size and exercise needs
  2. Breed traits
  3. Other family members ( human and animal)
  4. How much time that you have available for walking and training?
  5. Food and vet costs

Do your homework and ask questions! We know all of the dogs and what kind of lifestyle would suit them best.  Ask us for advice…we are happy to help!

Jingo adopted!


Ibis adopted!


Flight adopted!









Bye bye Fred and two reservations!

Day two of our open weekend and it was an early start for two of our volunteers!

When Fred ( ex Pepe) was found by the roadside, little did he know how much his life was going to change.

Without doubt this boy has had a hard life. Granted he is a bid breed Labrador cross but at only 10 years old he has cataracts, bad arthritis and had been left at the side of the road to die. What luck that he was spotted by Debbie’s friend who knew just who to call! He was of course covered in ticks and fleas, dehydrated and confused but nonetheless Debbie popped him into her car, kept him safe overnight and brought him to us the next day!

When Debbie told the story to Leanne who runs Twilight, a retirement home for older doggies, Leanne suggested that after his 10 day ‘pound’ time that he came to live out the rest of his life with their pack of about 30 elderly dogs. All of the dogs at Twilight live in the house with Leanne and Mike and have a wonderful life with good food, plenty of garden time, great vet care and of course lots of tlc! What a lucky boy, no concrete kennel for him!

So early this morning, he was picked up by volunteers Debbie and Julie and off he went. Once he has settled in I am sure that we will have lots of news of how he is doing. Thanks so much to the lady who spotted him in distress and called Debbie, to Debbie who helped this lovely boy and to Julie who helped with the transport.

Many, many thanks to Twilight. It’s not the first time that they have helped us out by taking an older doggie, we are very grateful!

Have a look for yourself at how wonderful a place Twilight is! (http://www.twilightchiens.com/)

The refuge was very busy this afternoon and we have two super reservations. Thanks to all of the volunteers and visitors who came along!

We would also like to say happy birthday to Benson who is six years old today and who was adopted by our volunteers Rebecca and James. He’s a lively little fellow who is loving life in the UK. He spends his days walking on the beaches or playing with his friends at doggy day care.

Fred who is now at Twilight!



Happy birthday Benson!


Leila leaves and Pocket is picked

Well, day one of the open weekend was quite quiet, however we did have two adoptions. First to leave was Leila. This gorgeous girl had been with us for a surprisingly long time bearing in mind she is good with cats, dogs and children. But today was definitely her day. No fewer than three sets of visitors were interested in her! She left with a family who had seen her on their visit a couple of weeks ago but were unable to come back to test her with their dog until today. Eclair seemed to like her A LOT, as did the family, so off she went.

Next to leave was Pocket. This tiny bichon cross arrived ten days ago and her new dad had a nervous wait, visiting her every day and spending as much time as he could with her, despite knowing that if her owner came to recalim her he would be heartbroken. He, like we, has benn counting down the days, and today the wait was over! Angelique worked her magic and little pocket went home in her dad’s arms, looking a lot better than she did when she arrived.

There were a couple of new arrivals, and sadly Baila is back. It is the age old problem of cats and dogs. Yes, we did test her in the cat house before she left, but in her own home she is chasing the family felines, and for everyone’s sake the situation could not carry on. Such a shame for Baila, as we thought she had found the perfect home after 9 long months at the SPA. But as it turns out the perfect home is a cat-free one. At least we have this additional information now, so this failed adoption will help in the long run.

Day two of the open weekend tomorrow and we already know of one lucky dog who will be leaving, so you are guaranteed good news in the blog!

Leila  (on left) with new pal Eclair – ADOPTED
White dog with new brown pal









Pocket before and after – ADOPTED

small white dog











Baila is back – no cats next time!

pale dog with speckled ears

Nothing to report, but an open weekend beckons.

A disappointing day at the SPA, with no adoptions and two new arrivals, one of whom, a female labrador, was found tied up to the SPA gates. This is a very dangerous way to abandon a dog, by the way. The gate slides open via remote control, and although employees arriving from outside may see the dog before pressing the remote control, the family who access their house via the refuge would have no way of knowing if a dog is tied up before they open the gate.

If you love your dog enough to bring it to the SPA gates, surely you don’t want it to get injured (or worse) at the final step. Far far better to man up and bring the dog in during opening hours.

Perhaps this person saw that the SPA is open on both Saturday and Sunday this weekend and thought their dog would be quickly rehomed. Wrong. As with all dogs who arive without being officially abandoned, any new arrival has to wait 10 days before being put up for adoption. This is to allow their owners enough chance to reclaim their pet. The only way we can know that no one is looking for the dog is for the owner to tell us that the dog is no longer wanted.

We now have two days to improve the week’s statistics. We have only had two adoptions so far this week, which is very disappointing. Why not come and visit us on either Saturday or Sunday afternoon and see if we have the dog of your dreams just waiting for you!

Open day sign