Friday, 22 July 2016

Ten Top Tips For Keeping Your Dog Cool This Summer

So with the weather heating up dramatically lately here in the UK, its no surprise that most of us are seriously suffering in the heat. Even as I write this, its past 1am and I just can't sleep because of the hot and humid weather. It's vital that we don't forget that out furry friends are also suffering so here are ten top tips to help your pooch stay cool this summer.

  1. Water - Ok, So this seems like an obvious suggestion but keeping your dog hydrated is vital. Always make sure there is plenty of water readily available to your pooch and if you are going out pop out an extra bowl of water just in case.
  2. Shade - If your pooch spends some or a lot of their time outside make sure they have a shaded area they can retreat to when laying in the rays becomes too much. If you have no naturally shaded spots in your garden then make one using a parasol, gazebo or anything else you have to hand.
  3. Ice Ice Baby - No I'm not talking about the classic Vanilla Ice track we all loved to bust a move to back in the day. Pop a few ice cubes into your dogs water bowl. The water quickly raises in temperature in this heat and the ice cubes will help keep it cooler for longer.
  4. Paddling Pool - You can pick up some inexpensive pools now in many discount and pound stores. These may not be ideal to go swim ten lengths in but are perfect for your pooch to laze around in when they feel the urge to cool off.
  5. Parked Cars - Again it seems like an obvious one but never lock up and leave your dog in the car. You have all seen the horror stories on the news involving not just dogs but babies too! The temperature rises in a car at a ridiculous rate and can have devastating consequences for your dog. If you do come across a dog , try and locate the owner of the vehicle. Failing that call your local RSPCA or police for guidance.
  6. Get The Fan Out - If you don't have the luxury of air conditioning then a simple desktop fan can help cool the air and regulate the dogs temperature.
  7. Maintain Good Grooming - Maintaining your dogs coat and general well being is important no matter the season but it is especially important during the summer when improper grooming can cause your dog to be uncomfortable. Check out your local dog groomer and always check the appropriate grooming for your breed. Most people assume simply shaving the dog will help with the heat but this is it not the case. Dogs need there cost to help regulate their body temperature.
  8. Dawn/Dusk Walks - Try to schedule your dogs walks to early morning or evening times. The temperature will be a lot cooler and there will no risk of your dogs feet getting burnt from the hot pavement.
  9. Cool Cloths - If you find your dog is suffering with heat exhaustion, wrap cloths soaked in cool water over them to help regulate their temperature.
  10. Be Aware Of Hazards - Its not just heat to watch out for this summer. With summer comes plenty of other chemical hazards such as weed killers and insecticides. Always take caution in unknown areas of land.
Whatever you and your pooch get up to this summer make sure you stay safe and have fun!

Until next time..


Thursday, 21 July 2016

Losing It With Slimming World

Most of you will know that I have been on the weight loss wagon for sometime now. I joined Weight Watchers a few years back and achieved fantastic results, losing 5 stone in total! I needed a break from counting calories and with my work schedule changing it meant I couldn't get to meetings as much as I'd have liked to and with not going I just found my head and heart wasn't in it anymore and it was just a waste of money. So I quit and decided to just take a breather and see how I got on. Now thankfully my weight didn't immediately start piling on but gradually after having about a year off plan I noticed my weight increasing so decided it was time to start making some changes again before I ended up back where I started.

I wanted to try something new so decided to give Slimming World a chance. Don't get me wrong I have nothing against Weight Watchers, it was amazing and worked for me but I found myself at a plateau and needing something different. My first meeting went by in a bit of a blur. There was just so much information to take in and I was certain I would forget it all the minute I left the meeting. It all seemed very confusing but never the less I decided to give it my all.

I'm 3 weeks into Slimming World now and have to say I am amazed at what you can actually eat on the plan. I know a lot of people complain about it being restrictive when it comes to treats but it allows for them quite easily and lets face it , every diet plan boils down to simple concepts. Fewer calories, more movement and portion control. It's all about making the right choices. I have lost each week since I started. Granted they are quite small losses in comparison to some people. I have seen people lose in excess of half a stone on their first week! But I am not complaining a loss is a loss and if I am honest I probably wasn't 100 percent committed to the plan the past few weeks. I have followed the plan loosely, not logged any of my food, just kept a mental note and have more than likely gone over my syns allowance each day. So this week I am totally committed to giving it my all and seeing if it shows when I weigh in next week. I am tracking everything I eat so I am aware and accountable, I am upping my water intake dramatically. Water intake has such an impact on your weight loss among various other benefits. I am also making a conscious effort to move more weather it be walking the dog or doing a HIIT home work out, just something that takes me out of my sedentary state even for a short time.

I am feeling very determined to have a great week and look forward to catching up with you all on weigh day and sharing my results. The way I see it you'll only get back what you put in and a little effort goes a long way in helping you achieve you goals.

I'd love to hear from any fellow Slimming World members out there? Or just people who are changing to a more healthier lifestyle in general? Have you made changes to your diet and exercise regime? Get in touch, I'd love to hear from you.

Until next time..

Wednesday, 20 July 2016

My Blogging Gap Year

I am amazed and a little bit mortified that in just a few short weeks it will mark a whole year since my last blog post. At the time I decided to take a few weeks off. Work was getting busier. Those of you that know me know I work for Toys R Us so once the summer comes it's manic then we start gearing up for the Christmas season. (Yes that early!) A few weeks slowly become a month, then two then before I knew it, It was 2016 and I realised I hadn't blogged since the previous year.

So where do I start? How to I jump back into blog land? I am sure there is no sure fire way of getting back into my groove so thought I would start with a quick update on whats been happening to me and mine since we last spoke.

After being single for a long time (and posting about my singleton life often ) I met a lovely guy in October. It was a chance meeting on a night out. It was a girls night and meeting a bloke was never further from my mind than it was that night. But they do say love comes to you when you least expect it right? And that is exactly what happened. The relationship is still going strong. He is such a lovely guy and I have never been so happy than I am with him. True love indeed.

Now for the not so happy news...

Those of you that are regular visitors or know me out side of the virtual world will know the battles we faced as a family with regards to my mum and her health. She had kicked cancers arse more times than I can remember and was gearing up to do it once more. Unfortunately in May this year while she was in theatre having an operation which should have once again freed her from this horrendous life shattering illness, she ran into complications and this resulted in her passing away shortly after. It was the single most traumatic and heart breaking experience of my life and one that I don't think I will ever truly come to terms with. We dropped her off in the morning, said are goodbyes and had no fears of anything going wrong. We knew we would be returning the next day to visit her when she was out of theatre and in recovery. We had been here before, we knew the drill but sadly it just wasn't the case this time. It still feels so raw and I still find myself unable to take in the fact that I will never see her again or hear her voice. I had always assumed the cancer eventually getting the better of her, I think as a family we all did. But to be taken away from us so unexpectedly during an operation which was going to take it away is just something that's hard to accept. I don't want to go into much more details as even writing this now, I find my heart getting heavy and I am struggling to keep my cool and not break down. But I will say this. Through every illness she was a fighter and this proved true to the very end. The surgeons fought for hours upon hours to try and save her and she hung on and fought with everything she had until the next day. Surrounded by her loved ones she passed away.,

When mum was in theatre she was given over 42 pints of blood as well as various other clotting agents. Donating blood is something I always said I would do but when it came down to it I either lost my nerve or didn't bother going. Well last month I put my needle fears aside and donated for the very first time. Forty two people selflessly donated to help keep my mum alive and I couldn't think of a more amazing gift to give. I am already booked in for my next donation and will donate each and
every opportunity I can for as long as I am able.

I do wish I hadn't left it so long before returning to blog land, but I'm back and ready to connect with you all again.

Until next time....