Could your pet be the UK’s first Pet Detective?

Light pawed pets causing havoc throughout Britain

Research shows Britain is awash with pet-ty criminals, costing the nation £305million

• Over half of pet owners admit their animal regularly nick belongings

• The cost to the nation of pet pilfering is a staggering £305 million

• It’s not all about cat burglars – birds are actually the biggest perpetrators

• Top items stolen include money, post, food and even underwear

• One in 25 owners have fallen out with neighbours as a consequence of their pet’s actions

• ADT has launched a nationwide search to recruit a “Pet Detective’ to help put a stop to pilfering pets

Britain is in the grip of a crimewave. Pilferers are breaking into houses and stealing everything from cash to underwear – and it’s costing the UK a staggering £305 million. You might even have a thief in your home right now… but who? Well, look no further than Fido or Fluffy.

If you’re one of the 12 million British households who own a pet, you could be the next victim. Britain’s furry friends have turned into furry fiends as over half of UK pet owners (52 per cent) admit to harbouring a pet criminal. But the real number of furry and feathered felons could be even higher, as a further 15 per cent say they suspect their beloved animal is thieving but they can’t prove it.

Surprising new data from ADT, the UK’s leading security brand, reveals owners lose £49.34 on average to their light pawed pets, but shockingly, one in 16 (six per cent) owners has been burgled to the tune of over £150. That’s a lot of kibble.

The research also reveals that ‘cat burglars’ is a misnomer as birds are the true scourge of the nation, with a whopping 59 per cent found guilty of filching (perhaps this should be renamed ‘finch-ing’?).

Pooches are also prolific with 58 per cent caught with their paw in the proverbial cookie jar, compared to only 47 per cent of cats.

However, reptiles have the most extravagant tastes, with the items they steal coming to a whopping £209 over their lifetimes.

Top items taken by pets include food (71 per cent), money (seven per cent) and even underwear (21 per cent):

1. Food (71 per cent)

2. Shoes (25 per cent)

3. Other pets’ toys (23 per cent)

4. Children’s toys (22 per cent)

5. Underwear (21 per cent)

6. Post (17 per cent)

7. Blankets (17 per cent)

8. Clothes (14 per cent)

9. Newspapers (nine per cent)

10. Money (seven per cent)

The research also revealed that old pets are even teaching themselves new tricks as they pursue a life of crime – 35 per cent of pilfering pets learnt to undo food packaging, 30 per cent can now open doors and 12 per cent can unlock handbags to get to their loot.

Which could be why one in ten owners (ten per cent) just don’t know how to make the thieving stop.

So to combat this wave of pet pilfering, the security experts at ADT have teamed up with Instagram superdog Pumba the Chow Chow (@thingsonpumba) to create a new role on the product innovation team – the UK’s first ‘Pet Detective’.

Pumba and ADT are looking for the UK’s most prolific cat, dog, budgie or bunny burglar, to help ADT understand how pilfering pets manage to evade capture, and identify weak spots in Britain’s homes by setting a thief to catch a thief!

The role is a year’s consultancy. The exclusive position will be reimbursed with a new ADT Smart Home system which will be installed by ADT, a year’s free monitoring and a generous welcome bonus of £500 of vouchers for Monster Pet Supplies.

If you have a pet pilferer at home, apply on their behalf on the ADT Facebook page. [Insert FB Link]. The application process is simple – owners simply need to upload an image of their pet in action and detail their suitability for the role using the following criteria that Pumba has set out for the applicants:

Track record of being light-pawed

Highly intelligent – comes up with ingenious ways to pilfer possessions

Intrepid explorer – capable of venturing far and wide to find every nook and cranny

Experienced at evading capture

– Full bag of swag

Pet plundering leads to more than just financial loss, as one in 25 owners have fallen out with someone thanks to pet theft. Six per cent are even too embarrassed to return stolen items.

Not all pet pillagers are getting away with it though. 65 per cent of owners catch their pet in the act – which could be because pets aren’t master criminals. 40 per cent don’t bother to hide their loot at all, and 39 per cent of owners admit to accidentally handling stolen goods as their pet simply gifts them the stolen items.

Technology is also helping owners rout out thieving reptiles and rodents alike; one in 20 (five per cent) pet owners have revealed they caught their pets stealing through their home security systems – as technology in the nation’s homes gets smarter the pets will have fewer places to hide their loot.

Lee Jasper, from ADT said: “We’re a nation of pet lovers but the research has revealed that the nations pets don’t always return the love – they’re thieving our possessions behind our backs. As experts in home security, we wanted to get to the bottom of this. As the best way to catch a thief is to set a thief we’re searching for the UK’s most prolific pet pilferer. We’ll use their insider knowledge to understand and learn more about the security weak spots that the UK’s pets exploit.”

Gabriel, the owner of Pumba said: “We are excited to see the potential candidates coming forward. Pumba has had her moments of thieving so she knows that these pets have a long road ahead to get clean. However, becoming the ADT Pet Detective should help keep them on the straight and narrow.”

Pumba added: “Woof.”

The research also revealed that pet burglars are turning a blind eye to their human counterparts. A shocking 76 per cent of dog owners revealed their dogs didn’t alert them to a burglar being in their home. Eighty-five per cent of cat owners also said that their cat didn’t meow when a burglar came in.

Surprisingly birds make the best burglars and the best pet burglar alarms – with 46 per cent of owners revealing they were made aware of an intruder by their pet bird squawking.

For more information about ADT’s Pet Detective campaign, visit

This post was sponsoredby ADT Pets At Home.


Miss Rhapsody’s Pamper Routine

People often ask me about Rhapsody’s grooming routine and how much effort it really is to maintain her curly coat. Keeping in mind the fact that she is not a show poodle and is only in a pet trim, here is our grooming routine!

Every day

Every day we clean her eyes to remove any ‘eye boggies’ as well call them which helps to reduce any tear staining which is common in poodles. We also brush her ears most days as when they are long they tend to pick up a certain amount of dirt (and food) throughout the day – we have had to remove raw meat from them in the past so she now wears a snood for her dinner!

Every couple of days

Every few days Rhapsody will have a full body brush, we concentrate on the areas that can become easily matted such as under her arms and behind her ears. We use a long-toothed metal comb to make sure we get to the base of her coat and then a slicker brush to fluff her up! When we brush her we also use a conditioning spray to keep her coat nice and soft.

Every week

Once a week we fight the battle that is nail trimming. It’s something Rhapsody really hates but her nails do not wear down much naturally at all, probably partially due to the lack of road waking we do so we have to trim them regularly. As she has black nails we use nail clippers to take some length off and then a grinder to get closer to the kwick.

Every couple of weeks

Usually every couple of weeks, sometime last more often if she’s been particular muddy and gross, Rhapsody gets a bath! We use a range of different natural shampoos and conditioners in order to keep her coat in tip-top condition and then dry her with a hair dryer. We usually shave her face about every three weeks to prevent her becoming a bearded lady and also pluck her ears. Like the hair everywhere else on a poodle’s body, it also grows inside their ears and must be removed to avoid infections. We use a plucking powder to keep this pain-free and she doesn’t mind at all!

Every 5/6 weeks

Every five to six weeks Rhapsody has a full groom. This means shaving her face, feet and the base of her tail and trimming the rest of her body with clippers. We clip her to the sam length all over, usually with a number 6 comb in the winter or a 4 in the summer, and then use scissors to even out her legs and tail. A full groom can take anywhere up to two hours so lots of breaks are required to keep stress to a minimum and to make sure the clippers don’t get too warm! When we do a full groom we also usually empty her anal glands (yep, it is a gross as it sounds) as they can become very sore if they become too full!

So there you have it, all the time and effort that goes into maintaining a Miniature Poodle. We like to think of it as all the time we save hoovering because she doesn’t shed! Poodles are certainly not the breed for a lazy owner, they can very quickly spiral into a dismal state without proper grooming.

Small Business Spotlight: HOWND

Given the miserable weather in the UK over the last week or so, this week’s Small
Business Spotlight has come at just the right time! HOWND make a range of wonderful grooming products including shampoos, body mists, paw balms and more; perfect for this damp and dreary British weather. Before we tell you what we think of them, here’s Mark to tell you a little more about the business, their products and why their products are so special.

Hi Mark, thanks for joining us today. What was the inspiration behind HOWND?

When we first launched we were called Butch & Bess, but after running into a silly trademark dispute we decided it was best to change names and HOWND was born in early 2015.  We were already producing the best dog grooming products available on the market so it was just a matter of changing the branding and packaging.  I know I’m making it sound easy but it was really hard work. We chose the brand name HOWND as we knew we wanted to build a range of products covering all things ‘doggy’ and also wanted a name that people got right away. The ‘w’ was required to trademark the name, but we tell everyone it’s because it stands for winner, wonderful, and wow!

What makes your products different from other doggy grooming products?

It’s so difficult in today’s world to remain unique just because of the number of products available on the market.  But we always look at a group of features that together keep us unique such as our 100% Cruelty Free International certification, our accreditation by The Ethical Company Organisation and the NatureWatch Foundation, and the fact that many of our products are innovative, award-winning, and contain natural and vegan ingredient alternatives to what’s currently on the market.  A perfect example of this is the use of Candelilla Wax instead of Bee Wax in our Skin Nose and Paw Balms.  We don’t believe in using commercial bee farms so have an incredible alternative sourced from a shrub which grows in the Chihuahua Desert in Northeast Mexico. Also, our new Miracle White & Bright Shampoo contains a natural alternative to the bleaches and optical brighteners found in most other whitening products.

Why is it so important to you that you use high quality, natural ingredients?

It’s what our consumers are asking for. We have all read about the humanisation of pets, and our consumers want the very best products for their dogs just as they would want for themselves and their children. Natural ingredients are better for you, it’s plain and simple really. And it doesn’t have to be incredibly expensive either and it’s all becoming more mainstream.  We like to see our brand as being ‘affordably premium’ – we know our products are loved by dog owners and professional groomers – but it’s also important to us to not overcharge just for the sake of it.  We have some very expensive ingredients in our products and use them because they make a difference to the skin and coat.  Everyone picks the space they want to represent and ours is based on creating products that keep your dog’s coat healthy, rejuvenated, clean, moisturised and smelling great.  And all our grooming products are vegan as well.  It’s a win for everyone. 

Can you tell us a bit more about your new Hemp by Hownd range?

Hemp by Hownd will be a new range of hemp seed oil based products to include shampoos, treats, supplements, and the skin nose and paw balms which we have just launched and won a product innovation award for.  Hemp Seed Oil has been around for thousands of years and boasts incredible health benefits for pets. It also contains the perfect ratio of Omega-6 (linoleum acid) to Omega-3 (alpha linolenic acid) fatty acids. These are essential fatty acids, meaning your dog can’t produce them and needs to get them in his diet.  A good balance of these Omega oils is critical to your dog’s health because they work synergistically in the body. Hemp seeds are also high in an essential Omega-6 fatty acid called gamma linolenic acid (GLA) which helps fight cancer, reduce joint pain, and improve skin and coat. 

Which is your personal favourite HOWND product?

I have two personal favourites. One is our Yup You Stink! Shampoo.  I love the fresh clean smell of it and the formula can handle just about anything thrown at it. My dog rolls (and eats!) fox poo, loves getting muddy, and loves stagnant water ponds.  And Yup You Stink has never let me down.  I also love our brand-new hemp balms as they can be used on the skin, paws, and nose and contain such amazing ingredient goodness. It’s like a jar of pure health!

What has been your proudest HOWND moment so far?

There has been quite a few I must admit – it’s amazing to watch our business grow and more importantly see all the amazing reviews from both dog owners and the trade. Last month we were at a large trade event called PATS and we took home two gold awards on the night which was incredible and totally unexpected. One was a product innovation award for our new hemp seed oil balms, and the other was for marketing campaign of the year for our annual ‘Bring Your Dog To Work Day’ fundraising event which happens at the end of June each year. To win the top awards for both product and charitable campaign was awesome and proves that hard work and passion does pay off. These two awards totally encapsulate what we are about as a brand. 

What does the future hold for HOWND?

Exciting times lay ahead that’s for sure.  We are about to go through our first funding round will which help us grow more aggressively and enable us to bring so many new and innovative products into the hands of dog owners.  Early 2018 will see our first non-grooming products introduced and then we will push on from here. We are so proudly a made in the UK brand but understand the benefits of growing our exports and partnering up with the right people. Hownd will always remain an innovative, fun and personable brand which will offer products to improve the wellbeing of your dog.

Doodle Review: HOWND Shampoos and Body Mists

HOWND very kindly sent us a selection of their products to test, we’ve saved a few for another post so keep your eyes peeled for that very soon! Today we will cover the shampoo and body mist sets we received from their ‘Got An Itch’ and ‘Yup You Stink!’ ranges.

To test the Got An Itch shampoo we enlisted the help of Desmond who lives with my Grandparents. Des has perpetually itchy skin, the humans have tried a number of different shampoos, creams and supplements to try to ease this but still he keep itching. Over the last few months it has been so bad that the hair on his legs is starting to discolour, as you can see in the pictures, from where he uses his teeth to scratch his itches which also leaves his coat smelling slightly yeasty. This made him the perfect candidate to test the Got An Itch range! The Got An Itch shampoo is designed to protect and moisturise the skin with a formula rich in wheat protein and argan oil, as well as rose, orange and bergamot essential oils. It has a pH-balanced formula containing wheat protein, oat kernel, argan oil and aloe vera leaf juice – all of which nourish, condition and soften a dog’s coat for easier grooming. The delicate scent of the rose and bergamont essential oils is fresh and floral without being overpowering. Once Desmond was out of the shower, and thoroughly unimpressed as you can see, the unpleasant smell from his coat was replaced with scents of the oils and although still present, some of the discolouration was reduced which was a pleasant surprise. In the days following the use of the Got An Itch shampoo Desmond was definitely significantly less itchy that usual – that’s a win in our books!

Along with the Got An Itch shampoo we also received the Got An Itch body mist which can be used after the shampoo as a complementary product to prolong the fresh, floral scent or as a stand alone product when grooming. The body mist is designed to help soothe and nourish dry and flaky skin, whilst giving it a gleaming, static free and refreshed coat. The humans sprayed Desmond generously after his bath in the hope that it might prevent the musty coat making a return and Miss Rhapsody also stepped up to help with the testing! Rhapsody’s coat, as with a lot of poodles, has a tendency to become a little dry in between baths so the humans are always on the look out for conditioning sprays that will reduce the number of baths they subject her to. Trust us, it’s not a pleasant experience for either party! Thankfully the Got An Itch body mist did exactly what it said on the bottle, her coat was lovely and soft and a bath was avoided for at least another week. Phew.

Unfortunately I was not so lucky. As the resident ‘mud magnet’ as my mother calls me, I was clearly the only one with the correct skills and love of filth to test out HOWND’s Yup You Stink! range. Now, the Yup Your Stink! range is designed to help deodorise dogs using a combination of eucalyptus and cedar wood essential oils and gentle odour neutralisers. It is formulated to absorb strong odour from fox poo, cow dung and all other manner of stinky stuff that us pooches just love to roll in! The Yup You Stink! conditioning shampoo is not only designed to remove bad odours but also to deeply condition and moisturise, my human said that my coat was even softer and shinier that usual after my bath – I was too busy sulking to notice. The smell of this shampoo (and body mist) is extremely clean and fresh, like a basket of freshly laundered sheets and once scrubbed and spritzed I smelt just as good, much to my dismay.

Our favourite thing about HOWND (other than the fact their products smell amazing!) is that all of their products are free from harsh chemicals and are Leaping Bunny certified by Cruelty Free International – we love a company with good morals that have the best interest of all animals at the heart of everything they do!

All the HOWND products featured in this review retail at £9.00 per bottle/spray and can be found online on the HOWND website, other online retailers such as Fetch and Amazon or in pet shops across the country including some Pets at Home stores.

You can keep up with the lastest HOWND news on their Facebook, Instagram and Twitter pages – they’re great places to look out for new products and discounts!

Small Business Spotlight: Peach & Pooch

Welcome all to this week’s Small Business Spotlight, we have another fantastic accessory company for you this week – the wonderful Peach & Pooch. Peach & Pooch is run by the lovely Emily Ong who not only makes all the accessories but also designs all her own prints. Her accessories are truly unique and we cannot wait to show you what she sent us. For now, I am going to hand you over to Emily to tell you all more about her business, Peach & Pooch!

What was the inspiration behind Peach & Pooch?

 I always wanted to start up my own business, and when my little pooch, Margo, came in to my life, I started making and drawing fun designs for her. I had really good feedback from people who saw my examples, and so decided to follow my dreams and take the plunge with Peach & Pooch!

We love that you design all your own fabrics, how did you get started?

My background is in Textile Design and Weave, so I’ve always had creative projects on the go. I start doodling, and build ideas from there! The more you draw, the more ideas can develop. I create fresh and quirky designs, like my Scoot Scoot Panda (who has seen a panda on a scooter on a collar before?) My style is quite playful and fun, I like bright colours and happy little characters! 

I’m hugely passionate about taking my designs from fabric to finish. For me, the fabric design element of my products is as important as functionality. I’m really proud to say that all my products are exclusive to Peach & Pooch, fully designed and handmade in Yorkshire.

Which is your favourite design?

 It’s so hard to choose! I love all the Dinos. It was one of my original designs and I’ve developed a number of colour combinations because it has just been so popular, as well as being suitable for both girls and boys. I’ve got a soft spot for Pumpkin Peach at the moment too; those guys just look so happy that it’s autumn.

Which is your best selling design?

Tumble Panda and Dinos are both really popular!

Tell us more about your new water resistant range!

Margo absolutely loves water and getting herself mucky, so I understand dog owners sometimes need products that are going to withstand mucky pups’ antics. My water resistant range is colourful and durable yet still luxurious, but a bit more hardwearing and quick drying for adventurous pups. You can now choose water resistant for all your accessories, as well as your collars and leads. I’m really pleased that I now offer both soft, luxurious cotton products and water resistant products to pet owners!

What’s the best thing about running your own small business?

It’s great to be able to do something I’m passionate about. It is quite scary taking the plunge and it is a lot of hard work and commitment, but it has been absolutely worth it so far. Life is too short to do something you don’t enjoy, so if anyone reading is thinking about following their dream, just go for it! You don’t know unless you try!

What does the future hold for Peach and Pooch?

I only started Peach & Pooch this summer, but I hope it will continue to grow and develop. I’ve always got new designs and products on the go, so keep a look out for new products launching for Christmas!!

Doodle Review: Peach & Pooch Halloween Bandanas and Water Resistant Accessories

Emily very kindly send us a range of her gorgeous accessories to put to the doodle test, namely two bandanas from her Halloween range and a collar and bow tie from her new Water Resistant range. First up we have our adorable Halloween bandanas. Now, we aren’t huge Halloween fans in this house, not because we don’t like the idea of Halloween but Mum just hates the tacky rubbish that comes with it! Plus, I don’t do costumes. Clothing must be functional or not worn at all. Anyway, this year we were determined to find some tasteful Halloween accessories and the range from Peach & Pooch hits the spot. Emily has designed no less than seven different Halloween patterns and each one is just as cute as the last! We love the fact that most of the designs don’t include loads of black (lots of black a big no-no for brown dogs) which a lot of Halloween designs do! I received the Pumpkin Peach bandana in a size medium which fit perfectly!

The Peach & Pooch bandanas slide easily onto any collar and sit very nicely with very little need for adjustment. The high quality of the material also means that the bandanas do not bunch up on the collars as many over-the-collar bandanas do. Just incase Emily’s prints weren’t cute enough, you can also add a fancy edging (in this case a pom pom but varies by design) to any of her bandanas for just an extra pound- just when you thought they couldn’t be any cuter?! Rhapsody wear the Who Says Boo! bandana with fancy edging in a size small.

Our second pair of accessories from Peach & Pooch were from their new Water Resistant range, a collar for Rhapsody and a bow tie for me. Mum absolutely loves the idea of a Water Resistant range as we have been known to destroy a collar (or half a dozen) so this was the perfect range for us to test! Emily sent me a Disco Dino bow tie in a size medium and I was determined to put it through it’s paces – usually Mum removes my bow ties before I go swimming or anywhere near any mud so it was fabulous to still be able to look dapper while causing chaos! I am pleased to announce that after half an hour of constant swimming and mud wallowing my Disco Dino bow tie looked none the worse for wear, in fact, I’m willing to bet you thought the photo of it below was taken before I got it well. Well, I’ve got news for you Mum forgot to do a photo of it before so that was taken AFTER all the others!

Miss Rhapsody was given the lucky job of testing a Water Resistant Peach & Pooch collar. The collar Emily chose for her was the adorable Turquoise Fresh & Floral collar in size Tenny Tiny (yes that is actually what the size is called!) 16mm width. We love that P&P sizes go so small, we can often struggle to find collars that are both adventure-proof and small enough as ‘outdoorsey’ brands tend to cater to big dogs. Don’t worry big dogs, our pal Kevin is a Peach & Pooch brand ambassador so they definitely make big dog accessories too! Rhapsody didn’t put her collar to the test in quite the same extreme way as I did however, it has been pretty wet and gross since out photo shoot and her collar still looks as good as new! The best thing about the Water Resistant range is that it is available in almost every pattern that Peach & Pooch sell, whether you fancy Tumbling Pandas or Dancing Dinosaurs you can be sure that your Peach & Pooch accessories are adventure ready!

Overall we have been thoroughly impressed with the quality of our Peach & Pooch accessories and would definitely recommend their Water Resistant range to anyone who’s pooch is particular to a spot of mud bathing! The fact that Emily designs all her own fabrics is just amazing and means that you’re buying a totally unique product that you will not find anywhere else! In addition to the bow tie, bandanas and collar that we’ve featured Emily also does leads and harnesses in a huge range of different designs – we personally absolutely love her ocean based designs (eagle-eyed readers will have noticed our Shark Attack and Gone Fishing collar on our recent Glamping Trip).

You can buy Peach & Pooch accessories exclusively from their website, and Etsy store. You can also follow them on Facebook and Instagram – keep an eye out for their Christmas designs, you can guarantee they’ll be amazing!

Small Business Spotlight: Bramble & Friends

This week we are featuring one of my all time favourite brands. We bought our first Bramble & Friends collars almost two years ago and since then we have built up quite the selection of collars, leads, bows and more recently, bandanas! Before we go into why we love B&F quite so much, here is owner Tamsyn to tell you all more about her fabulous brand!

Who are Bramble and Friends?

Well at this end we have three naughty Boston Terriers – Bramble, Nim and Bradley, Lyla the Airedale and me their slave/human, Tamsyn!  My husband Neil and various family members get drafted in at times of stress to help with order packing (hello Chrismas!).  We also consider everyone of our past, present and future customers Bramble’s friends!

Please tell us all about the changes you’ve made to the shop recently!

I’m always looking to improve the quality and value of my designs, and recently I have done just that!  The collars are now available in leather free biothane or hand stitched bridle leather – both far more durable and long lasting than before.  I wanted to add a leather free version of the same design as more and more people are making that choice – and Biothane is the perfect replacement.  After training with master saddlers earlier this year, I wanted to put my new skills to good use and make our leather collars the best they could be.  They are now all cut, dyed and hand stitched from start to finish and made from the finest English bridle leather.

The fabric or Harris Tweed covers are now removable and interchangeable, so can be replaced when scruffy or if you just fancy a change.  I decided to do this as the fabric covering always the first component to wear, making a perfectly good leather collar ready for the bin!  Now instead of buying a whole new collar you can just buy a new collar sleeve, reducing waste and making our collars a great investment.  We have new style braided cotton rope leads and these can be matched to any tweed.

Which is your best selling tweed?

Blue herringbone easily!

Which is your personal favourite tweed?

Agh the impossible question!  I love country rustic tweeds, but some times you can’t beat a super soft pink number!  There are too many that I love and it changes all the time…I think I’ll say the duck egg herringbone – Bramble has been wearing this as her collar for a good while now.  I am a tweed addict though and if a weaver presents a new colour that I haven’t seen before, I find it hard to resist…

What makes your products different from other tweed collars on the market?

The fact you can buy one collar and have and endless choice of colours!   With a little maintenance, our collars will last years, but you can pick a new look when you get bored, or they are just as lovely worn bare or with a bow tie.  Our main selling point is that you can have a traditional, well made product with a quirky colourful twist!

Do you have any more new products coming soon? Maybe Christmas products?

Of course!  I have so many ideas to bring to the shop but need to find the time to launch them.  On the cards in the near future we have vintage style Christmas themed accessories – I am mad on Christmas!   I’m also working on prototypes for new custom ID tags. I’m using a material that I loved to use for crafting as a child – that’s all I’m giving away at the moment 😀

What does the future hold for Bramble & Friends?

Aside from hoping to be at Crufts next year (fingers crossed!), the long term plan is to move into a dedicated work space, rather than just use corner of our house.  We have the space in a (very) old barn, in our new garden, but it is in need of extensive renovation.  I would hope to run open weekends and allow locals to come and visit and do some hands on shopping and perhaps try making their own accessories.  This is a far off dream, but it will happen!  I will also expand the team to add another human – just don’t let me get any more dogs!!

Doodle Review: A Range of Bramble & Friends Accessories

As Tamsyn mentioned above, she has just revamped her tweed collar design and we were seriously lucky pups as we were the first to officially test out the new design after Bramble, Nim, Brad and Lyla! Now, we loved her old tweed collars so we weren’t sure she could possibly improve them but alas, she has proved us wrong. The most significant new feature of the new B&F tweed collar design is the removable sleeves. Previously the tweed was stitched on as part of the collar, they were undeniably beautiful but personally I wouldn’t actually let mine wear theirs very much as I was terrified that they would ruin them. Now, I don’t need to be quite so concerned as the fact the sleeves are removable means they can be washed with ease and once the dogs do inevitable destroy them, they can be replaced without replacing the whole collar! The removable sleeves also mean that you change your look without buying a whole new collar, instead of £26 every time you fall in love with a new B&F tweed (which for us is every time Tamsyn gets anything new in!) now you only have to replace the sleeve at the bargain price of just £8.99! With over 40 different tweeds to choose from, I guarantee you need at least three of them!

The sleeves are not the only thing that has changed, the new collars are made from the best possible British brindle leather using traditional saddlers techniques. Tamsyn actually went on a leather works course earlier in the year in order to perfect this new design and learn new techniques, if that’s not commitment to your craft then I don’t know what it. All the collars are finished with the Bramble & Friends logo stamped into the leather, the perfect finishing touch. The collars are absolutely stunning in ever way. I genuinely don’t have enough superlatives in my vocabulary to convey to you how perfect they are.

The new collars come beautifully presented in their own jute bag with a small pot of care balm to keep them looking as beautiful as possible for as long as possible. With regular cleaning and application of the balm these collars will last many years. There is also no reason they can’t be worn in the wet and even at the beach as long as they are allowed to dry naturally afterwards and any dirt is removed. B&F leather collars start at £36 and come in seven different sizes to fit dogs of all sizes.

Don’t fancy leather? Well Tamsyn has also come up with a lovely vegan alternative, Biothane. The B&F Biothane collars are strong, flexible and stink-proof with zero maintence – you can just rinse them under the tap when they get gross! They also have the option of the removable tweed sleeve which can be changed with the seasons.

To go with our beautiful new collars, Tamsyn included matching bows and leads for us – we feel like seriously spoilt doggies this week! Our new leads are made primarily from a rustic hemp rope with a comfortable tweed handle to match our collars. The whippping on the leads also coordinated with the tweed handles – it’s the little touches like this that make us love Bramble & Friends so much! The leads feel nice and strong without being super heavy or cumbersome, very important when you’re a little dog! The hemp is also fantastic at concealing dirt which very important in our house. B&F hemp leads with tweed handles  start at just £24 and you can choose any tweed colour for your handle!

For days when you’re feeling fancy there is nothing better than a Bramble & Friends bow tie. As you may have noticed, we have quite the collection of bows and these have to be our all-time favourites. Our B&F tweed bows sit really nicely on our collars (Mum really hates floppy bows) and we just love the contrast of the two different tweeds on them. B&F bows start at just £6 which is a complete steal for the quality of them!

The final exciting item in our package was a pair of limited edition Halloween bandanas! I can’t even begin to explain how excited Mum was about these, it was a good job noone else was around when she opened our package. So embarrassing. I mean, they’re pretty special but still. Pull yourself together woman.

Anyway, these amazing bandanas feature the beautiful illustrations of Elena O’Neill backed with robust yet super soft black or white velvet. These Halloween bandanas are like nothing else you will see, subtle and classy as well as durable and practical! The bandanas fasten with poppers, no faffing with ties or collars, they are super easy to get on and off. From a safety perspective they will also come undone if they get caught on anything when out and about preventing any accidents. Very useful when you like to climb trees like me! All B&F bandanas can be machine washed, tumble dried and ironed to make sure they stay looking smart and they can even be used as a cooling aid when it’s warm (might be a useful for Halloween in the Southern Hemisphere!).

As you can see, we are absolutely in love with everything Tamsyn sent us. We have been blown away by the quality of her new designs and already have our eyes on a few more items from the new collection including a couple of braided cotton rope leads and lots more tweed sleeves (and matching bows) for our collars! As far as tweed accessories go, Bramble & Friends accessories are simply the best!

You can buy all the B&F accessories we’ve featured and loads more on Etsy or from the official Bramble & Friends website. We also recommend following them on Facebook and Instagram to keep up with the latest new deisgns, special offers and cute pictures of Bramble and her friends!

Until the end of November you can use the code DOODLEDISCOUNT to get 10% off any order from Bramble & Friends, I’m sure that mean you can add an extra bow to the basket!

Small Business Spotlight: Sylvade – Doggie Robes and Dickie Bows

I know we are a couple of days late this week but hey, better late than never! This Small Business Spotlight features the wonderful Sylvade – Doggie Robes and Dicky Bows who make a huge range of fantastic dog accessories. Here to tell you more about this great brand is the lady behind it all, Sylvia.

Hi Sylvie, thanks for joining us. What was the inspiration behind Sylvade – Dog Robes and Dicky Bows?

We were inspired to start Sylvade after a couple of friends asked us to make some towelling coats for their dogs to use after they had been swimming and then other people started asking so we decided to start making them to sell and people asked for other things and it all snowballed from there! Continue reading