January Dog Sitter Host Spotlight

A tribute to our wonderful host John Lacey

A tribute to Barking Mad dog sitting host John Lacey

Host John Lacey with one of his beloved holidaying dogs


With much sadness, we dedicate the January edition of our Host Spotlight to the memory of our wonderful dog sitter host John Lacey. John and his wife Kate, from Ilkeston in Derbyshire, had been Barking Mad hosts for six years. They provided a happy holiday home for many doggy visitors and Kate will continue to do so in the future.

Dog lovers John and Kate had always enjoyed having dogs around when growing up.  In adult life, Kate had really wanted to get a dog but John was more reluctant due to his concerns about vet bills and kennel costs. The couple also spent winters abroad so dog ownership would really not have been practical.

John’s Barking Mad story…

Nicola Fairbrass, owner-operator of Barking Mad Dog Care Derby, takes up the story:

“One day, about six years ago, John saw one on his friends, Pete, out walking with a dog.  He approached Pete for a chat and during the conversation asked about the dog, as he wasn’t aware that Peter owned a dog. Peter explained that the dog wasn’t his but that they were ‘hosting‘ for Barking Mad and looking after the dog as its owner was on holiday. When John got home he told Kate all about it; Kate investigated us online and loved the concept. The rest is history and Peter and his wife, Anne, are still hosting six years later too.


Barking Mad dog sitter hosts John and Kate Lacey

A Barking Mad host gathering with John and Kate in attendance


John and Kate made a lovely couple.  John was a gentle giant, laid back, easy going and everyone loved him.  Kate is a beautiful person and would always go out of her way to help anyone. Nothing is ever too much trouble for her Barking Mad guests. Over the years John and Kate hosted many dogs, happy to provide love and care for all breeds, shapes and sizes of dog. Kate started out with lots of rules about dogs not going on furniture and the bed etc.. but they have all gone out the window! Kate and John once had a dog that was a little anxious and so they took it in turns to sleep downstairs with him just to keep him happy.

John was such a valued member of our dog sitter host team at Barking Mad Derby and will always be held in the highest esteem by myself, my staff and his fellow hosts. We will miss him immensely.

Kate feels that hosting means the world. She and John did it together and therefore she wants to continue in the same vain.  Having a dog in the house makes it less empty and provides companionship, cuddles and walks. She is an amazing host and has so much to offer visiting dogs.”


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