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Dog Sitter

Bath & South Somerset

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Nicole Bowden

About me About me

Nicole Bowden
Bath & South Somerset

Tel: 01373 800222


Dog Sitting / Sitters Bath and Dorset

Welcome to Barking Mad Avon & Somerset, Wiltshire and Dorset, a five-star rated, specialised and personalised service that can take away the worries and trepidation that come with going away for a short trip and needing to leave your dog behind. We design the ideal holiday package to meet all of your dog’s individual needs.

Dogs are sensitive animals, they are part of your family ‘pack’ and they love being in their home environment, feeling a strong connection to the people, items and activities in their daily lives. It can be hard when this changes, even for just a short period of time, with the anxiety levels placed on a dog not conducive to their health. If you are going on holiday or a work trip, you’ll no doubt want the peace of mind of knowing your dog will be happy and looked after, which helps you to relax too.

As a dog owner, you will know what makes your pet tick, their individual personality and quirks. It can be hard to place them in a kennel for two weeks where you know they will be exercised with many other dogs, fed with other dogs, leaving out the possibility of one-on-one care and no guarantee of sticking to a personalised regime for exercise and meals. This can be hard to contemplate, but thankfully, Barking Mad offers a personalised experience that is suitable to each and every dog.

We are able to match your dog with the perfect host home for their needs. We have a wide-ranging database of hosts who have been carefully vetted by our team of dog specialists. Each of our hosts are dog lovers, aware of our strict guidelines of care and service. They will be fully updated on your dog’s specific needs and requirements before their visit. In unfamiliar surroundings, it can be hard for a dog, even for a day or two, so we invite you to send over some familiar home comforts; a blanket to sleep on, their favourite toy to chew on or their regular bowls to eat and drink from.

Anything that makes them feel at home is an excellent addition to their trip, and if your dog requires special medication or nutritional supplements we will also take care of that for you. Our team of dog care experts are on hand 24 hours a day should any problems arise during your time away. What’s more, we’ll be providing you with a ‘doggy postcard’ so that you can keep up with how much your dog is enjoying their own holiday away from home! There’s nothing better than seeing your dog enjoying their holiday so that you can relax that little bit more.

We believe our service is the best option for dog owners in Avon & Somerset, Wiltshire and Dorset, no other dog-boarding service can match our detail or dedication, but we’re sure you’ll want to see evidence of that. So please take a scroll through our testimonial pages, where you’ll see a host of dog owners who’ve given their opinion on our system and how it worked for them and their dogs. We’re excited to see owners who love their dogs say that our service is worth a five-star review, which is happening all over the country.

That’s a further strength of our service; don’t worry if you find yourself in another region needing the same level of care. We have over 70 branches nationwide that can accommodate your dog, whether it’s for a day at a time, right up to several weeks, with a database of hosts ready to help with care and attention.

If you are looking for dog sitters in Avon & Somerset, Wiltshire and Dorset, then look no further! Barking Mad has been providing loving and caring host environments for dogs since 2000. Our customers experience a level of service unlike any other. Visiting your home once a day to feed, water and walk your dog was never a service we would settle for. We understand that every dog is different and requires its own type of attention, with those stabilising routines even more important when their owner is away.

Email us at contact.centre@barkingmad.uk.com or give us a call on 01524 220202 and a member of our friendly and knowledgeable team will work out a bespoke plan for you and your dog. Remember, we can come meet you at home and see what keeps your dog happy. From there we’ll pick the ideal holiday home to give you peace of mind on your trip away!

Hello and welcome to
Barking Mad Dog Sitting Service

Local Professional Service

Individual Care

Peace of Mind

Alternative to Kennels

Organised Over 80,000 Doggie Holidays Since 2000

Over 70 Local Branches

Our award winning professional pet sitting service gives customers complete peace of mind. We receive fantastic customer feedback which is undoubtedly the result of our belief in developing a personal relationship with our customers – we are not an online agency - so you can be confident that once your holiday is booked, we’ll personally take care of everything.

How our dog sitting service works

It’s really important to get to know you and your dog, especially in the beginning. We’ll come to you for an initial registration meeting which takes an hour, to find out about feeding and exercising routines, likes and dislikes and any other individual needs, so that we can match your dog/s with exactly the right family. No two dogs are ever the same so please don’t worry, we love dogs of all shapes, sizes and ages, pedigree, Heinz 57 or rescue. They can sleep in the bedroom, pull on the lead, or even hide your favourite socks so long as they’re friendly we’d love to meet them.

Selecting the right home from home family is very important and your input into this process is invaluable. We understand you will want to know exactly where your dog is going, so during our time together you will see all of our dog-loving families, what experience they have and what their homes and gardens are like. All of our host families are carefully inspected by us each time we deliver or collect a dog, they are guaranteed to meet our extremely high pet sitting standards. Furthermore our hosts are at home during the day to ensure care is always provided especially where puppies, dogs on regular medication and senior citizens are concerned. If your dog is extremely sociable and you’d like him to have some company during his stay, then we can arrange a holiday with a family who have a resident dog of their own.

We provide a complete service including door to door chauffer driven transportation, a real bonus for busy customers preparing and returning from time away. The main benefit however is for your dog. Being collected from home is far less stressful and overcomes any anxiety which could be caused when left behind by you.

Our Prices

One off initial registration meeting £35
Daily boarding rate £24
Daily boarding rate for additional dogs £18
Collection and delivery £35



Bailey – All ready for his holiday complete with paddling pool!

At the registration meeting you’ll receive one of our exclusive ‘Holiday Doggie Bags’ which you can pack with food, bowls, toys, treats and anything else to help your dog settle in more easily.

We even offer an unlimited luggage allowance at no extra charge!

Complete peace of mind

Host families are given a Pet Schedule detailing all of the information we gathered at the initial registration meeting and we’re on hand 24 hours a day 7 days a week to support them.

We’ll send a photograph of your dog to you as soon as he’s been safely delivered to the host. The very next day we give you a ‘rest easy’ update, so you can then sit back, relax and enjoy the rest of your time away in the knowledge we’ve got everything covered.

On the day of return you’ll receive a fun postcard from the host and we’ll stamp your loyalty card so you can gain points which will entitle you to a free night away.

The best bit for us is seeing dogs happily settled-in and comfortable with their host. We will, wherever possible, be sure to use the same family each time you book a holiday. There are no minimum or maximum time limits we’re here whenever you need us.

Earn a FREE day with every completed Loyalty Card
Loyalty card 2017 web.jpg

Ask for your loyalty card. When your card is full you receive a FREE stay on us! (1 full card = 28 paw stamps).

Do you...

Love dogs but can’t commit to your own full time?  blue-tick.png

Would you like to be part of a dog loving business?  blue-tick.png

Would having a dog make you feel less lonely?  blue-tick.png

Would having a dog help you to get fit?  blue-tick.png

Welcome to Barking Mad

If you love dogs but can’t commit to the full time financial and emotional responsibility of having a dog of your own, or if you have a very sociable dog who would benefit from visiting guests coming to stay, then you’ve come to the right place!

Our very own host families are extremely special people indeed. They have been selected carefully and interviewed in depth at home to ensure they meet our criteria. We get to know them really well and have worked with many of them for a great number of years.

Who are our hosts
It goes without saying, all of our hosts, without exception, are absolutely dotty about dogs. Some are actively retired people who’ve had dogs all of their lives but now enjoy the freedom and flexibility of caring for dogs on holiday. Others are younger, often with a family at home, where the addition of a visiting dog is great fun for all.

How it works
We’ve done all the hard work so you don’t have to. We think it’s important that our hosts concentrate on looking after visiting dogs and that they are not exposed to, or distracted by a constant flow of potential customers and dogs coming and going. Our hosts are also protected from the awkwardness of dealing with money, insurance and paperwork, so that the enjoyment of looking after visiting dogs remains their focus.

Support 24 Hours a Day – 7 Days a Week
Looking after someone else’s dog is great fun, however from time to time you may need a little local, on the ground support and it’s great to know we’re on hand 24/7 to provide just that.

If you’re interested in joining our fun, dog loving host community to become a pet sitter we’d love to hear from you.

CLICK HERE to make an enquiry

Our fantastic host families are the heart of our business and we simply couldn’t do what we do without them. If you know someone who’d like to join us, please let them know.

Our Hosts

A small selection of our lovely host families:

Gill & Michael-1.jpgColin & Jenny-1.jpgChris-1.jpg

Host Comments

Brenda - 2nd May, 2017
"We recently had Fozzie for several days it was such a joy to have him my dog Wiggles loves him a lot.
My whole family love him as did our friends where we walk every day.
We look forward to his next visit.
Brenda Street"

Carol - 13th Apr, 2017
"We enjoy looking after peoples dogs as it gives us pleasure to think they have come from home to home. Sometimes our commitments are heavy but It fits in with our lifestyle as we can do it as and when we can. It gives us pleasure and hopefully the pets enjoy our company too. Barking Mad are efficiently run and if I had a dog of my own would gladly let them find a host for my."

Celia - 23rd Mar, 2017
"Lulu has just been to me on her fourth visit. We've both had a lovely time and it seems strange today without her. She is well known and well loved by my friends and neighbours now as well as the local dogs. We all look forward to seeing her again soon."

Jackie - 6th Jan, 2017
"We had the pleasure of looking after Pip for 2 weeks over Christmas this year! We all loved having him for his 2nd visit with us. We enjoyed the walks (even in the cold and sometimes wet) and my children loved his company too!

I would love to have a dog of my own sometime soon, but looking after dogs with Barking Mad gives me the opportunity to see how a dog would fit into our lives, what challenges it might bring and what delights too! I can test out different breeds and ages too in case I go down the rescue dog route!

Definitely a win win option."

Brenda - 6th Jan, 2017
"We recently had Molly come to stay we all fell in love with her. My dog Wiggles loved her too
She was so good and had us laughing when she showed attention to the Tv.
We enjoyed her company and will look forward to her coming to see us again.
Beautiful Girl."

Carol - 3rd Nov, 2016
"We thought the service we got from Emily at Barking Mad was very professional - the information we received on Inca prior to our having her was very precise and made our experience all the better. It was good to know she was at the end of the phone especially as this was our first time. Inca was a pleasure to have and as advised needed lots of love and attention which we certainly gave her. We look forward to the next time to host again. Many thanks."

Brenda - 26th Oct, 2016
"We recently had Scout come to stay with us what a lovely time we had scout and my dog wiggles became great friends it was really nice. Its nice that the dogs get to visit carers whilst the owners go on holday as it gives peace of mind for all concerned and the dogs are happy too We look forward to scout coming again"

Brenda - 26th Oct, 2016
"Scout came to stay a beautiful little dog we had a great time look forward to seeing her again.
Barking Mad is a lovely idea it is very important that the dogs are happy and we love it"

Celia - 4th Oct, 2016
"Lulu has just gone home after seventeen nights with me. This is the longest stay I've had but it wasn't too long. She is a delightful, easy dog to look after who quickly makes herself at home.
This is the third time she's been to me and I look forward to her next visit."

Brenda - 4th Oct, 2016
"I think Barking Mad is such a lovely idea as the dogs can visit families a bit of a holiday whilst their owners have a holiday too.

We recently enjoyed a visit from a beautiful dog Fozzie he settled into our home quite happily and we enjoyed him too.
Animals need to feel secure with no worries and fitting into a family environment makes for a happy doggie I think Barking Mad is a very good idea
I will look forward to the next vistor on four legs."

Jackie - 12th Sep, 2016
"I have recently looked after Pip for just over a week and really enjoyed it. I am looking to have a dog myself but want to be 100% sure I am doing the right thing before I take the plunge.

I love that with barking mad you get lots of help and support while looking after someone else's precious dog. If you have a problem or the dog becomes unwell you also know that help is at hand. I found the experience rewarding and it was lovely having Pip stay with us. The problem is we missed him when he was gone...

I would like to continue looking after dogs with barking mad.


Celia - 19th Jul, 2016
"Hugo has just had two weeks holiday with me. As a lively two-year-old Springer he was more of a challenge than I've had before but I loved it, and him. We walked many miles and I managed to loose some weight. An added bonus for me!
I think Hugo enjoyed having my undivided attention and he certainly made the most of it. I always think about how I would like my own dog to feel - happy, secure, content, and loved."

Linda - 29th Jun, 2016
"Hello I love having the dogs it gets me out and about too..I am fairly new to the neighbourhood. And I have met people that I would not have met if I was not hosting. All the dogs I have had since I've been hosting have been very good I love them all. I wish I could have some of the small dogs back I had last year!. Posted by Linda"

LindaS - 29th Jun, 2016
"I love being a host we find it encourages us to go out more and explore dog friendly places so we get loads of fresh air and exercise. We have the peace of mind that Barking Mad are on the end of a phone if we need them for any reason and its a great way of having a dog without the costs involved. Also if your lifestyle means you cannot have a dog then this is a great alternative. I would definitely recommend it as all the dogs we have had have been easy to care for and friendly, the hardest part is saying goodbye but because you know they will probably have another holiday before too long you don't get upset you just look forward to their next stay."

Anne and David - 28th Jun, 2016
"Hosting a dog gives us a lot of pleasure and is very rewarding. We have only been hosting dogs for 3 months but we're really enjoying it. It gives you the satisfaction of knowing that each dog has had a lot of love and a good home from home holiday. We treat every dog as if it was ours, taking note of the pet profile guidelines. It is a great help knowing that you have the back-up of Barking Mad should anything untoward happen, which gives us peace of mind. John has been excellent matching us with the dogs we've hosted so far."

Brian and Carole - 8th Apr, 2016
"We have been hosting for 18 months now and have come to know the regular dogs we have. The owners have requested many times that they like them to go back to the same host. We find it rewarding that they make these requests.
Nicola is always very careful to match the host and dog and this shows in the requests she gets.
Keep up the good work. A perfect match makes a happy owner, dog and host.
Barking mad prides itself on this and Nicola and her team work very hard to make this happen.
We have just got another first time little doggy today and we hope that he will want to come back again.
A big thankyou to all the team."

Celia - 6th Apr, 2016
"Archie has just gone home after his second visit. He's the most affectionate little dog I've met. Really loving, kind, and gentle. He can be a bit naughty sometimes but we suit one another well and both thoroughly enjoyed our week."

Gwen - 31st Mar, 2016
"We have just had a second visit from a lovely dog that we first met over last Xmas. Having become very fond of her the first time, it was lovely to see her again. She settled more quickly this visit, and was very relaxed. We really enjoyed our time with her, and look forward to her next visit."

Gwen - 24th Mar, 2016
"We have just had a beautiful golden labrador to share our lives with for the past nine days. He was delightful, really good around other dogs and children, and a joy to be with. I'm looking forward to having him to stay again."

Pam - 18th Mar, 2016
"We have just said goodbye to our latest doggy client and thoroughly enjoyed having him here.
He settled in straight away, was friendly and playful. We never imagined choosing this breed ourselves but he's now a very firm favourite and today the house seems empty without him. Hope to look after him again sometime."

Gwen - 14th Mar, 2016
"I enjoy doing the best I can to make sure that my doggy guest feels relaxed, cared for and loved whilst they're away from home. This is what I would want for my own dog, when I have to go away on holiday, so I find it very rewarding to provide this for other people and their dogs."

Jenny - 8th Feb, 2016
"For me, the best part of being a Barking Mad host is getting to know all the different doggie personalities and making friendships with them, particularly when my new houseguest could be feeling a little bit homesick."

Margaret & Stan - 26th Jan, 2016
"We have thoroughly enjoyed hosting a lot of Barking Mad dogs over the last seven years. We have always had terrific support from Brad and team and prior to that from Chris and Alex. In all that time we have only needed help once during a visit, for minor veterinary attention, and that was dealt with very quickly and efficiently. I think this is because the dogs are well matched to their hosts (and the hosts own dogs!) in the first place. We also use Barking Mad for our own dogs holidays."

Adam - 22nd Jan, 2016
"When we moved to Dundee we both missed not having a dog in our lives. Being a host for Barking Mad gave us the opportunity to have that again, even though giving them back at the end is always hard.
It allowed us to see how well having a dog would fit into our lives in a full time situation, and directly influenced our decision to get our own. Now we look forward to hosting other dogs for Angus to play with.
As hosts, the support you receive from Brad is amazing and the detail he goes into to facilitate yours and the dogs well being is incredible.
I would thoroughly recommend anyone who wants to have a visitor now and again, someone who misses the company of the dog but has commitments and everybody who wants a dog but is not sure if it will work to become a host with Barking Mad, you won't regret it!"

Lorna - 22nd Jan, 2016
"I have been a host for several years, I started with Barking Mad as I wanted to have a dog but visiting family in the south made it impractical, so when I am home I have a dog, I have had a great variety of dogs from a little Jack Russell to a huge mountain dog. Barking mad is great because they match dogs with their hosts in all the years of hosting I have never had a dog that I would not have again. Hosting dogs means I go out everyday, I talk to many people and share doggie stories."

Ed and Barbara - 22nd Jan, 2016
"Having a four-legged lodger for a few days is always a pleasure. Still getting over the loss of our own dog but nothing cheers you up more than another wagging tail around the house. Great support from Brad and his team. If only he could do something about this awful Scottish weather."

Kate & Graham - 20th Jan, 2016
"We live in Shirley and have local parks, woods and fields nearby. Whatever the weather we love taking the dogs out and about. They have joined us for barbecues, street parties and made visits to a local elderly care home. Our grandchildren have learned to overcome their fear of dogs by meeting our 'guests'.Having a dog keeps us fit and healthy too. Our garden is large and well fenced so the dogs can enjoy chasing squirrels!

We would love to have a dog of our own but with working full-time until recently and travelling it never seemed the right time. Having dogs for Barking Mad has 'filled the need'. We have had so many dogs to stay (and everyone a pleasure) and one in particular has come twice a year since 2008.

Tina organises things so well - she 'matches' the right dog to the right host - so everyone is happy ( most of all the dog!)"

Susan - 20th Jan, 2016
"I love being a host for dogs with Barking Mad, and enjoy meeting the different visiting dogs, and getting to know each ones individual personality."

Sandra & Terry - 19th Jan, 2016
"We love being hosts to barking mad, Terry is around most of the day, and I work 4 days a week, so we can have doggies almost all the time other than we are on our hols !!, we already have our fav’s Bruno, Bentley, Darcy , Biscuit, Ben the boxer & Gunner, and Tina will try her up most so we can have them on repeat hols, it means a lot to us as we love looking after all the little & big ones, and they all have there own little characters, we have photos of all the dogs we have had since July last year, and look forward to seeing them all again this year, and miss them when they go home, It’s a pleasure to look after doggies on there hols, & and its filled a gap since loosing a couple of our own pets last year,"

Jenny, John and Jean - 15th Jan, 2016
"Being an animal lover - I love working with Barking Mad and being a host for them. I especially like having their beautiful doggies to stay. The doggies all have their own very different characters and we have some good times filled with really good fun and laughs with the doggies that stay with us.

We all really enjoy having the pets and get out and about and sometimes on the odd occasion we take them out to other parks and places close to home. Its just like having your own pet!

I do like the events and walks that Tina at Barking Mad arranges. Its a chance to get out with other hosts and meet them and hear their tales as a host.

I recall a fete we went to lovely sunny day with lots of dogs and we all had such a great time, I recall feeling quite sorry when the fete ended."

Tracey - 15th Jan, 2016
"We have been hosting since last summer and really enjoy the experience and getting to know the personalities of the dogs, even the cheeky ones !

I particularly like walking in the fields and woods nearby with my host dogs as company, and its great exercise too.


Rosina - 15th Jan, 2016
"I first looked after dogs in 2005 & have kept photos of all my visitors. After a break, came back to it a couple of years ago. I have had Millie two years running & cannot wait to greet her again in July, it feels like a special friend spending her holiday with me :)"

Gwen - 8th Jan, 2016
"Sheba, a beautiful Belgian Shepherd dog, was my first experience with 'Barking Mad'. She was adorable, very gentle, and well behaved. She seemed to fall in love with my partner - maybe she saw him as her temporary pack leader - and we both really enjoyed her company over the Christmas period. Having lost my own much loved collie of over 15 years, in October, I had felt lost without a dog to love and care for - so being a 'Barking Mad' host was ideal for me. We're so looking forward to our next doggie guest, and also hope to see Sheba again at some time in the future."

Celia - 8th Jan, 2016
"My last visitor, Pip, was an absolute sweetie. A breed I've not had experience of before and a real delight. She came to me for just a few days before going on to her regular family.
She loved her bed - well actually my bed - and when she was ready to go up at night she would stand at the bottom of the stairs, with one paw on the bottom step, and stare at me until I gave in."

Elaine - 9th Nov, 2015
"We really love our holiday dogs, we like to spoil them, love them, lots of cuddles and make sure they are really happy with us, it's lovely to get the same dog(s) over and over again, they just make themselves at home, and all our dogs know where the 'treat' cupboard is.. We get such a lot of love from them and look forward to them returning."

Sarah and Stan - 9th Nov, 2015
"We adore having new Barking Mad dogs come to stay and love it even more when they return for second and third visits. Its such a pleasure to spend time with these much loved dogs and take them for walks on the beach and around the countryside. We know that when our 'crazy' Collie goes to stay with a Barking Mad host, she will be safe, happy, and much loved."

Liz - 4th Nov, 2015
"We have really enjoyed hosting our last two dogs, Nelson and Finn. As a family we enjoy meeting the new dogs and letting them be a part of our family, albeit only for a while. It is good to know if we have any issues we can just call Emily. We hope to keep hosting even when we get our own dog, (something my husband would never have agreed to until he realized how complete a dog makes a home)."

Debra - 4th Nov, 2015
"We have had a full calendar for October starting with a surprise arrival as another host was sadly taken poorly. Ruby arrived within 40 minutes of the phone call but soon settled in and became a family favorite. Then came Azi, she takes over our lives but ooh how we love her. Lastly we had Jess, an old lurcher who turned into a puppy again when it was walkies time. Each very different but all very lovable."

Diana - 15th Oct, 2015
"I have always had dogs since I was born,having lived on a farm. I cannot remember ever being without dogs. Now I am on my own it is great to have more than one dog.
I am a dog lover, plus Kali my lab just love to go on walks and have company at home.
So we are both very happy bunnies"

Nicky - 13th Oct, 2015
"I started pet sitting nine years ago for Barking Mad.

It is very enjoyable and I love the country and Beach Walks. I have to make an effort to get out with the dogs here.

I have many regulars that come year after year. Each dog has its separate character. With the pairs I love watching the integration between the two dogs.

I work for Ian Carney who pays a lot of attention to detail, doesn't mind going over things with me if I am not sure and always makes sure the dog is familiar with my bungalow before he leaves. He always promptly answers the phone and I feel that I am not alone with the responsibility of someone else's dog.

My life would be empty without Barking Mad.

Nicky, Dorset Host. Posted by Nicky"

Clive - 23rd Sep, 2015
"Having just said goodbye to our 2nd holiday dog whom we've enjoyed entertaining and looking after. We look forward to our next dog!"

Carole - 21st Sep, 2015
"Nicola and her team always go the extra mile to ensure they are acting in the dogs best interest. If there is any doubt about a dogs health she will always act accordingly so that the owners can rest assured that there dog will get the best possible attention and the owner can relax and enjoy their holiday. We have always welcomed all our lovely dogs for holidays and they enjoy their stay.
Keep up the good work and keep sending these lovely dogs for their holidays that they can enjoy.
A first class team who cares unreservably for the dogs in their care. Posted by Carole"

Debra - 17th Sep, 2015
"We have just enjoyed a lovely long weekend with Roxy the staffy. She is so well behaved we hardly knew she was there but now she has gone our home is a quieter sadder place. This is why we love Barking Mad as each dog gives us a smile!"

Sarah and Stan - 9th Sep, 2015
"We love taking our four legged holiday friends for walks through the fields and to the beach, Its a privilege to get to know the new dogs and become friends and really special when they come back to us for a repeat holiday full of cuddles and fun."

Angela - 21st Aug, 2015
"I have just become a host for Barking Mad and recently cared for my first dog, a lovely old Labrador. He fitted in so well with my own two dogs and I thoroughly enjoyed giving him a special holiday for a few days and am really looking forward to helping out again. It is something very dear to my heart and feel I am being of use to others in providing a safe and welcoming home from home for someone's beloved pet. Plus my own pets also enjoy the company."

Elaine - 21st Aug, 2015
"We love looking after our holiday dogs, they are all really lovely, friendly and usually make themselves at home straight away. We especially like to have the same dog back time after time and they always look really pleased to see us again."

Brian and Carole - 19th Aug, 2015
"Monty is always a pleasure to have in our home.. Just gone back to his home after another great holiday.
Nicola and her team are as always very efficient and friendly. Thank you to all of you.
Brian and Carole Posted by Brian and Carole"

Diana - 19th Aug, 2015
"I love having dogs I was brought up with my father's GunDogs we always had 2 or 3 at a time. A friend saw you advertising for people to look after them while a way on holiday or just for a week- end. So I did just that. I loved having Maisie also Kali loved it as well."

Cynthia - 10th Aug, 2015
"My Barking Mad dogs, many of whom come back again and again, light up my life. They are all different, with different hopes and needs, and getting to know them and earn their trust and affection is pure joy. They go everywhere with me, visiting friends, shopping, and of course on lots of nice healthy walks, good for me as well as them. Total strangers have become friends, stopping me in the street with "What's this one's name, then?" - or even, on between days, with a disappointed "No dog today?"
God bless BM, my area manager Ian, my owners, and first and foremost, all my dogs."

Celia - 4th Aug, 2015
"Rolo has just gone home after his weekend trial. He passed with flying colours. 10/10 I would say and I'm looking forward to his return towards the end of the week.

Well done Emily - you worked out straight away what sort of dogs are best suited to my situation. Quicker than I did."

Pam & Ray - 21st Jul, 2015
"After a year of being without a dog it was great to have not one but two dogs in the house. To see two little faces greeting us from their crate when we returned home was lovely. They settled in well and Emily made sure we were happy with them. Our grandchildren who live opposite were constantly here playing with them, which they adored. If only we had heard about Barking Mad when we were dog owners and didn't want to use kennels!!!!!!!!"

Filomena - 9th Jul, 2015
"Having Pebbles for a few days was delightful and Finley enjoyed the company. I thoroughly enjoyed the experience of dealing with a dog other than my own and understanding her needs.
She seemed extremely happy and made herself at home immediately. All doggie friends on park enjoyed meeting her and she was in her element.
Great fun all round."

Mary - 8th Jul, 2015
"I've often asked myself why on earth anyone would want to be a host for Barking Mad. Belly rubs, staffie, Henry's smelly farts, being first out in pristine snow, pickle's snoring (how the walls vibrate), watching Starsky grow from a gangling four month pup into a well behaved teenager. I can go on and on but my favourite is sleeping on the settee on a hot afternoon having a 'nana nap' with a happy, contented pooch sleeping on my stomach dreaming of rabbits.

In 2014 I looked after 24 different dogs, most of whom returned numerous times. So far this year I've had 18 from little to large to very large (ah yes - Dudley). If I put my foot down and ask for time out to have a holiday myself then I get those puppy dog eyes from Ian (the boss) suggesting that I would love to take a dog with me. I generally succumb and thoroughly enjoy our time together.

Would I recommend being a Barking Mad host to anyone else? Having a boss like Ian who is very keen and hands on makes being a host easier. Should anything crop up he will be straight round to deal with it. I love hosting and would urge those people who are thinking about it to have a go. Where else can you wake up to a pair of soulful eyes, a lolling tongue and a wet nose in your immediate field of vision - that's enough about the old man!

Hi you folks at head office. I have spoken to Ian and he says that if you use this can you put it on both his Bath and Dorset sites please. Many thanks. Mary xx"

Celia - 30th Jun, 2015
"Having lost my beloved 15-year-old Westie last July I decided to sign up as a Host with Barking Mad towards the end of the year.
To be honest the first dog that came to me didn't really suit me and I wasn't sure I would do it again. But Emily persuaded me to have another try and I've had several dogs since which have all been delightful. My favourite, Lulu, has just gone home after her third visit.
I know she loves coming to me and I love having her."

Shannon - 27th May, 2015
"I love looking after all the different types of dogs that come for there holiday with me. I love caring for them as if they where my own. It gets me out and about meeting new people and their dogs too. All the dogs I've had come everywhere with me and even though each dog had a different personality they where all great to have. I look forward to caring for more dogs as well as caring for the same dogs that i have had."

Brian and Carole - 27th May, 2015
"Just coming to the end of another period of hosting a Barking Mad dog on holiday. We really appreciate what Nicola and her team do to connect the right dog to the right family. After having dogs all our lives the time came for us not to be selfish and home another dog in later life. Barking Mad filled that gap and we adore giving a home from home holiday to these special dogs. It's just what we wanted for our dogs rather than kennels.

We feel privileged to be a host for Barking Mad and look forward to giving the next dog with a good home, a good holiday.

Nicola and her team are very professional and give the owners and host families a very professional approach which makes a good holiday for the dogs and a lot of fun and satisfaction for the hosts.

Keep up the good work and can't wait for the next dog to come on holiday. Thank you to you all. Brian and Carole"

Brian and Carole - 29th Apr, 2015
"Beau just gone back home after having another fun holiday with us. She so appreciates the TLC we give her and look forward to having her again.."

Sue - 17th Mar, 2015
"I have loved having the pugs, a breed I've been thinking about getting. Was so nice to have a dog in the house again. All very well behaved and was nice to know Emily was always on call should the need arise. Looking forwards to my next house guest. Sue"

Celia - 10th Mar, 2015
"Lulu, a delightful little Coton de Tulear, was collected from me yesterday after a nine-day stay. We both thoroughly enjoyed ourselves and I was sorry to see her go. - Can't wait for her to come back again."

Elaine & Tony - 26th Feb, 2015
"Love looking after our holiday dogs. It's a brilliant, well run company, with people who really do care about the dogs, I would highly recommend to would be hosts or dog owners who can rest assured their babies will be well looked after."

Liz - 25th Feb, 2015
"Really enjoyed having Hamish. Appreciated the support, from Emily, with the walking issue and the fact I could call if any issues.

Next dog please.


Hayley - 25th Feb, 2015
"Me and my family love being a part of the Barking mad team! It makes me feel happy knowing the dog isnt in kennels and instead having a fun time in the our home. Its also great for my own two dogs, it gives them the chance to make new friends and socialise with other dogs all shapes and sizes!"

VLG - 8th Jan, 2015
"I recently hosted my first little visitors from Barking Mad. I was slightly nervous having 3 at once, but I need not have been concerned, Emily was very good with lots of info about what I needed to do.
They very quickly settled in and I really enjoyed having their companionship. I loved taking them out each day and watching them play with their toys."

Shirley - 1st Dec, 2014
"It's now twelve years since I first asked Barking Mad to look after our lovely Boxer Amber.Later,we became hosts and since Amber died,Barking Mad has helped to fulfill our enjoyment of canine companionship with dogs of many different breeds and temperament.
It is lovely when we have repeat visitors,to know that their owners are just as pleased with the Barking Mad service and care of their cherished dogs as I was with Amber."

Carole and Brian - 19th Nov, 2014
"Had a wonderful three weeks with Molly she really enjoyed her holiday. Thanks Nicola you were very supportive and explained every thing needed for Molly to enjoy her stay.
Looking forward to our next visitor.

Posted by: Carole and Brian Lee on 18th Nov, 2014"

Geoff and Ruth - 29th Oct, 2014
"We love the opportunity of hosting dogs as we no longer have of our own. This is a great way of having a dog around the house without the commitment of owning a dog."

Liz - 30th Sep, 2014
"My family and I love being hosts as it gives us the chance to meet lots of different dogs and get to know them.

The house feels empty once the dog has gone but we really enjoy giving the dogs a holiday and the owners piece of mind that this member of their family is being cared for safely and for a few days is a part of our family.

It is always good to know that Emily is on the end of the phone for support and the clear guidelines from the owners let us know what the dog enjoys and what their routines are."

Bruan and Carole - 22nd Sep, 2014
"We have just had our first dog on holiday and jess was a pleasure to have. We have always had dogs but lost our last one a year ago. It was a hard decision not to have another, but our age is against commiting to owning another. We saw a local advert for hosts and Nicola from barking mad made the whole process so easy.
Its the best decision we could have made and cant wait for our next doggy to come for a holiday. They make the house a home again. We love it. Thanks Nicola."

Monica - 28th Aug, 2014
"I lost my dog after 15 yrs together , so Barking Mad is ideal for me, I so enjoy having my doggy visitors, every one of them have their own characteristics, which is so nice to discover, whether they like playing ball, or tug of war with one of their toys, and I enjoy our walks as much as they do as well. Posted by Monica Bennett"

Ruth - 12th Aug, 2014
"How does one sum up being a Barking Mad host? Fun, good loving company, enjoyable healthy exercise and sociable walks when holiday dogs are here. When they are not, then time alone to relax, visit friends, have days out, holidays etc, but soon something is missing. You can't beat doggy company! So I look forward to my next 4 legged holiday guest.

When they arrive I read their notes (what to feed, when to walk, favourite games) all the information I need to make them feel at home. Together we enjoy their holiday and I help them write a holiday post card at the end of their stay!

Life couldn't be better, especially when they come again and their body language, eyes and tail all say 'great to be back, let's have more fun.' Penny the Patterdale, Ellie the Collie, Riley and Alfie thank you for coming into my life. I'm sure you are the first of many more holiday makers who I'll enjoy welcoming into this holiday home for dogs.

When my 16 year old Bonnie went to doggie heaven recently I couldn't decide whether or not to get another dog. There were advantages on both sides, so I got in touch with Barking Mad and with help from Nicola I became a holiday home for dogs. It's great fun, varied, flexible and rewarding; The benefits of having a dog whenever you want, without being tied all the time.
Thank you Barking Mad for enhancing my life.

Posted by: Ruth Middlebrough on 9th Aug, 2014"

Mandy - 11th Jul, 2014
"I have always owned animals but current circumstances don't allow me to commit full time to the care of a pet. I missed so much not having one around, saw the advert for Barking Mad and Barking Mad took me on. It is the perfect solution! I have had the privilege of looking after some wonderful dogs, enjoying walks and cuddles with my little friends. Now I always have a doggie to look forward to, some of them stay with me regularly, which is especially fun. Any drawbacks? - having to return my little friends at the end of their holiday!

Becoming a Barking Mad Host is one of the best decisions I have ever made!!"

Mavis - 30th Jun, 2014
"I have been hosting for Barking Mad for almost six years now, and have so much enjoyed the company of some beautiful dogs of many breeds. I didn't want to get another dog of my own, so this was a perfect solution to have the opportunity of having a lovely dog for company, walks and fun, and yet be free to go away whenever I chose. As time goes by, certain dogs return for repeated holidays, which proves that a happy dog means a happy owner who entrusts their much loved pet to you. Barking Mad is a well structured company, and it is always good to know that 24hr support is on hand if ever needed."

Bernie & Susie - 24th Jun, 2014
"Although new to Barking Mad its been one of the best things we have done living on a small farm we have space and plenty of local walks to offer our wonderful friends who have stayed with us. each one is missed and we long for their return.
We have set up a gallery of our new friends and find great pleasure looking at the moments they have shared with us."

Niccola - 4th Jun, 2014
"I can honestly say that being a host for barking mad has been one of the best decisions I have ever made. It has helped me physically, emotionally and financially. After losing my own dearly loved Jack Russell I decided I couldn't have another dog to go through the pain of losing it again. Then along came Barking Mad, it must be nearly 7 years ago now and I've never looked back. All the dogs are such a pleasure and a joy to care for. You love them like they are your own and yes, you miss them when they go home but you know there will be another little one on its way to fill the space very soon . The best thing is that they do all come back regularly so your home really does become a home from home, it is wonderful when they come in and you know they are as happy to see you again as you are to see them. It really is the best thing, everything is in place to ensure you have 24hr help and support if necessary. You can specify what type or size of dog you prefer and also specify when you are available. Basically if you're happy the dog is happy and vice versa."

Karen - 27th May, 2014
"This has been my first week as a host of Barking Mad and I/we are loving
it! My first dog guest was Maisie a bearded collie cross. She stayed with us
for the weekend and was such a pleasure to look after. We had lots of fun at
the beaches and parks. We then had lovely little Malcolm a jack Russell cross.
He was very excitable but settled very quickly. He loved playing in the back garden and on
our walks where he came across rabbits, horses and even hens. We are looking
forward to getting gorgeous Bertie very soon. The house seems strange when we
don't have a doggy guest now.

Thanks again, Brad.
Karen, Brian, Nico and Dylan."

Barbara & Peter - 23rd May, 2014
"Our "visitors" have become part of our family over the years. They are as different as our children, and, just like our kids, we love them to bits. Nicola has proved to be a good friend as well as a wonderful "boss". Of course, we do spoil our dogs but they are on their holiday!"

Bev & Ellie - 15th May, 2014
"We love the flexibilty of having different dogs to look after, and we have a few regulars now, especially over half term and school holidays, they bring such fun into the house, with their own individual personalities, we shower them with love and affection (as would their owners) and get very attached - but we know they have to go home, till the next time..."

Cid - 15th May, 2014
"There are so many reasons to love having dogs come to stay with us..... we love having a variety of sizes and breeds and personalities, there's always something to delight us! My boys love having dogs around to play with, and they don't get bored with walking them or feeding them because there's always something different. We get such fantastic characters come and stay with us, they get us out and about, they fill the house with wonderful dogginess. If there's a downside, it's the sadness when they go back home..... until our next doggy friend comes to stay, that is!"

maxine - 22nd Apr, 2014
"I enquired about being a host following my friends' dog being on a 'Barking Mad' holiday. As soon as I met Tina I decided that I would like to become a host, because I was impressed by her friendly professionalism and her genuine love of meeting the needs of dogs and their owners. I have been very well matched with some delightful canine companions! I look forward to the regulars and to meeting new dogs. I have not had any problems as such, but appreciate the speed of response and action from Tina, Colin and Carol-Ann when I have needed information or help with something. I might also add that that Tina, Colin and Carol-Ann are as lovely as the dogs they bring!"

Mick and Shirley - 22nd Apr, 2014
"When we retired, we considered getting a dog of our own. We'd had lots of dogs whilst the children were young but it had been a few years since our last one had died. However, we planned to travel so thought perhaps it wasn't a sensible idea. Then one day, Shirley overheard a conversation about Barking Mad.....and the rest is history! Tina was brilliant - her passion and love for the animals was obvious and we warmed to her straight away. Very soon after, Charlotte, a chocolate Labrador, came to stay with us for 2 weeks. Charlotte adopted us and gave us all her love, attention and affection. The walks, the fresh air, the laughter we had with her were excellent. We said "goodbye" and looked forward to our next dog. Since 2011, when we became hosts, we've had lots of different dogs and return visits from a number of them. It's great getting to know their personalities and learning about them. Tina is always available to consult if there are any difficulties. If anyone is considering becoming a host, we would strongly recommend it. We've never regretted it for one moment! We've just returned from 9 weeks travelling and are desperate to meet our next four legged house guest!"

Karen and Paul - 17th Apr, 2014
"A house isn't a home without a dog in it. Our labrador, Hero loves to have a friend for a couple weeks - they have lots of fun running and playing together, then Hero gets a rest before the next doggy visitor arrives. There's something very special about a wagging tail, and a doggy greeting! We're very pleased we found Barking Mad and treat all our visitors as we would expect Hero to be treated - with love and respect."

Helen - 17th Apr, 2014
"My family used Barking Mad initially for our own dog Sally. She was an old labrador and I never wanted her to be put in kennels when we went on holiday. Tina at Barking Mad came out and totally put our minds at ease. We were shown various hosts, their gardens and all Sally's needs were taken care of. This made us feel so relaxed going on holiday knowing Sally was in the best hands, literally home from home care. She was, most of the time, homed with the same family which was even more reassuring! Sally did take poorly when we were on holiday once and we were up-dated daily by Tina and Barking Mad took extremely good care of her, I will never forget them for that. When Sally passed away a few years ago we knew we didn't want to get another dog and decided on being a host family. It really is the best of both worlds. My 12 year old son particularly loves dogs coming to stay and the love we get from them. We've had all sorts of different dogs and characters. However, as we are busy during school holidays etc, we can select when we would like to take dogs. We have the freedom now and it's so much fun. The great thing is we know we have the back up and support from Tina which is fantastic. If things sometimes don't work out Tina is there to help and even take a dog should we be unable to look after it (which is a very rare occurrence as Tina is excellent at selecting the right dog for the right host). We take lots of photographs for the owners which Tina emails to them, should they wish, on holiday. We also write a little postcard for the families so they know what their pet has been up to while they have been away. It really is a fantastic company and I couldn't recommend them highly enough. If you are wanting company from a dog but without the full time commitment then look no further than Barking Mad. Go on, give it a try.......!"

Sue and Paul - 17th Apr, 2014
"We became hosts for Barking Mad, thinking it would be good to have a dog occasionally and the exercise would be good for us, being retired we need to keep going!!
Tina impressed us immediately..she really works hard at matching the dogs to the people. We love dogs that are good fun on their walks, but behave in the house (who doesn't?) and we have had a range of young and old, big and small and lots and lots of Labradors. If there has been a problem e.g. The dog needs the vet to check something, Tina, Colin or Carol Ann arrive and take the animal to the vet. We had one dog who obviously wasn't happy, and frankly was making us unhappy, perhaps pining for its owner, and Tina took it and looked after it herself. So we never have to worry that we are stuck with an animal that we don't get on with.
Tina has become a good friend, and her team of Colin and Carol Ann are so professional and caring with the animals it is a pleasure to 'do business' with them.

If you are thinking of being a host, do try it...you have a lot of fun, I enjoy the caring for some of the older ones as well as running round with the young ones, without the responsibility of having your own animal. Posted by Sue and Paul Allcroft"

Audrey - 16th Apr, 2014
"Due to health issues I am unable to have a dog of my own. Being a host for barking mad means I can have the company and pleasure of a dog, for a period of time with out the resposibility and cost of owning a dog myself.It is nice to know that as a host I can enable owners to have a break safe in the knowledge that their dog is being cared for by someone whose aim it is to give the dog a holiday in a friendly loving enviorment."

erika - 16th Apr, 2014
"I have been a host for nearly 9 years with my husband and now I am on my own. It is an absolute absolute pleasure to have my little dogs come to stay! I have regular ones and find it a privilege to be trusted with someones pet. They are my friends and it gives me something to focus on meet other dog lovers as well.

Posted by: Erika Cockerill on 15th Apr, 2014"

Dorothy - 16th Apr, 2014
"My husband and I thoroughly enjoy being hosts for dogs. Faye is great and runs a valuable service. Every dog we have has it's own wee personality and we grow to love them more and more every day. They are like little rays of sunshine in our home. We are so happy we decided to be hosts. We love it."

Ian - 16th Apr, 2014
"It is a real pleasure for us to look after so many varied dogs and hopefully give them a great time in a caring way close to their home life.Have done this now for over 3 years with nothing but positive experiences and would fully recommend being a host."

Jaclyn - 15th Apr, 2014
"We are the lucky ones that get to look after your lovely dogs my family and i enjoy it because we get to meet so many different characters and they are all individual and whilst they are with us they are treated as part of our family. We love dogs but because of work commitments we can only host during the school holidays so we are always looking forward to our new guest arriving and we hope to be part of Barking Mad for a very long time."

Our HostsOur hosts

Nicole Bowden

My name is Nicole and I am your Barking Mad representative for the Bath & South Somerset areas including Frome, Warminster and Trowbridge. (A full list of towns can be found below).

I live in Somerset where I have lived all my life and I love it. I am a mother of two beautiful grown up daughters and a step-mummy to a very handsome ten-year old boy. I am also of course, a proud dog owner.

I have always loved dogs since I was a little girl and remember trying extremely hard, begging my parents to have my own dog. However, only when I was an adult earning my own wages and living on my own did I go out and seek my first dog ‘Macintosh’. Macintosh was a wonderful Springer Spaniel. I now have two dogs, one working Cocker Spaniel and a German Shepherd. I love them both dearly no matter what.

My dream has always been to work with animals however as a busy mum I worked in a school to be able to bring up my two daughters and be there for them as much as possible. Now they are older I have much more time and flexibility to follow my dreams.

I started working for Barking Mad as an employee in 2016 and enjoyed it so much that I decided to buy and run the Bath and South Somerset areas myself. I love the concept and like many dog owners I was always too worried to leave my dogs to go on holiday. I was always lucky enough to have my father and my daughters to look after them.

We work with you to provide you and your dogs with an excellent, worry free dog holiday experience.

We appreciate that going away, whether it is a family holiday or a business trip and entrusting your dog to someone else can be a difficult decision. However, having arranged lots of successful doggy holidays we know you will find the Barking Mad experience to be a very positive one.
Your dog(s) will be lovingly cared for by one of our carefully selected host families who will maintain your loved ones routines giving them a real home from home holiday themselves.

At Barking Mad, we are extremely careful in the selection of our hosts and host families. Our dog loving hosts have safe and secure environments for your special doggies to be looked after. With our support our hosts provide the very best dog care so your special furry friend always has a one to one holiday to be remembered.

While you are away we will keep you updated on how your best friend(s) is getting along with the host family, by sending you a text or email message that we hope will help you relax and enjoy your break. We find that it’s often the simple things, like text or email messages that make the biggest difference to our customers.

Your loved one(s) are then returned with a happy, waggy tail and a postcard telling the story of their holiday, and even a photograph too!

I truly believe Barking Mad is the best local alternative to kennels with lots of repeat bookings and recommendations from lots of very satisfied customers. But don’t just take my word for it, take a look at what some of my customers have been saying on the customer comments page.

I look forward to meeting you and your best friend!


Places Covered

  • Glastonbury
  • Street
  • Godney
  • Butleigh
  • Baltonsborough
  • Lamyatt
  • Ditcheat
  • Priddy
  • Wells
  • Wookey
  • Cheddar
  • Yarley
  • Westbury-sub-Mendip
  • West Compton
  • Easton
  • North Wotton
  • East Pennard
  • Castle Cary
  • Farrington Gurney
  • West Harptree
  • Ilchester
  • Yeovilton
  • Yeovil Marsh
  • Odcombe
  • East Chinnock
  • Haselbury Plucknett
  • Halstock
  • West Coker
  • Mudford
  • Marston Magna
  • Queen Camel
  • North Cadbury
  • North Cheriton
  • Horsington
  • Cucklington
  • Penselwood
  • Charlton Musgrove
  • Stourton
  • Mere
  • Kilmington
  • Kingston Deverill
  • Maiden Bradley
  • Longbridge Deverill
  • Sherrington
  • Bapton
  • Chitterne
  • Bishopstrow
  • Warminster
  • Westbury
  • North Bradley
  • Trowbridge
  • Limpley Stoke
  • Bradford on Avon
  • Monkton Farleigh
  • Batheaston
  • Bathampton
  • Bathford
  • West Knolye
  • Corsley
  • Trowbridge
  • Heytesbury
  • Codford St Mary
  • Upton Lovell
  • Westwood
  • Monkton Combe
  • Stanton Prior
  • Frome
  • Corsley
  • Midsomer Norton
  • Radstock
  • Trudoxhill
  • Paulton

Customer Comments

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Hi Ian

Could you please pay our sincerest and grateful thanks to Sylvia and Derrick for looking after Kevin recently? He was obviously very well looked after and enjoyed his stay with them. He was most contented on his return so that can only mean he was completely contented during his stay with them. I really can't thank them enough for the excellent care they gave him and it is so reassuring to know he gets all the care and attention he would get at home. They really do give him a home from home and we hope that they will welcome him again in the future.

Jacqui & Gary Wright

Posted by: Jacqui and Gary Wright on

This was the first time that we have used Barking Mad for our 18 months old Springer. Everything went according to plan from the day Ian collected Harley to the day he brought him back. We were updated a couple of times over the 2 days as to how Harley was getting on, even with a photo via WhatsApp, as well as having a final summary written by Wendy and Chris, giving us a run down of events. We would recommend this service to anyone and have already made enquiries for our next booking!

Posted by: Martin & Fiona on

We have been using Barking Mad since our dog, Ralphy, was a 4 month old puppy. He has been back to the same family every time we've been on holiday and we couldn't be happier with the service we have had. Ralphy is so happy to go off to his host family and we have total peace of mind that he is well cared for in a home-from-home environment. We love receiving the pictures of him having a great time and he always comes home as if nothing has changed. We couldn't recommend the services of Barking Mad more highly.

Posted by: Jane Padwick on

very good service right from outset from the setting it all up right through to the return of the dog. very well looked after with regular texts etc to keep you informed of your dogs progress. well recommended. Posted by Michael Dyer

Posted by: bmadadmin on

We used Barking Mad for the first time recently and we are so pleased we did. Ian got to know Ed our dog and by the time his home visit had ended you would of thought Ed had known him all his life ! Ed went off to his host family happy and contented and came home a happy boy , thank you so much for taking such good care of our boy we will be using your services again and again

Posted by: Bev on

A great first experience of Barking Mad. The host family became quite attached apparently which is as good as it gets - literally, home from home. And, with the transportation taken care of too, our family holiday was as hassle and stress free as possible for all concerned!

Posted by: Jane Padwick on

We left Jessie with Chris for nearly two weeks whilst we were in Greece and Ian was brilliant at keeping us updated and re-assured that Jessie was being well looked after. It turned out that she was having the perfect holiday of her own and in fact, when she came back, she didn't seem to have missed us at all! Thanks Chris for doing such a brilliant job with her and thanks Ian for going that extra mile and helping us to relax and enjoy our holiday. Worth every penny.

Posted by: Bob & Jill Prior on

What a fantastic service! It put our minds at rest and we have recommended Barking Mad to all our friends and family countrywide. We were let down at the last minute and Ian came to the rescue. Shep was cared for with love and attention and has come home full of beans. Chris, Shep's host was fantastic. Busy looking for our next holiday and getting ready to book Barking Mad again. Score out of 10 it's got to be 10.

Posted by: Alison Hayward & Shep on 8th Aug, 2014

Posted by: bmadadmin on

Lizzie loved her holiday as always, its nice when Ian comes and she is excited, because you know she has enjoyed herself before, nothing worse than going on holiday and worrying about the dog !!

Posted by: Alison Ruscoe on

Excellent service from start to finish,it is so nice to know that our 2 dogs are going to a great home for their holidays while we enjoy ours,in fact the dogs don't seem that pleased to be back with us which means they were very happy where they were!!!!!!We would highly recommend Ian & partner to anyone who wants peace of mind while going away.

Posted by: Joanna Felt on

WE have used Barking Mad for some years now for holidays for our chocolate labrador Coco. Nothing is too much trouble for Ian, and Nicky her regular landlady looks after her as we would at home. She has a wonderful time as the photos of her holidays show. We are using Barking Mad at least three times this year.

Posted by: Peter Tilling on

Thank you Ian for arranging a host family for Ollie. And thank you Hazel and David for giving Ollie such a wonderful time. He is obviously happy and well cared for. We love hearing about his antics and can enjoy our holiday safe in the knowledge that Ollie is having just as good a time as we are.

Posted by: Alison on

A terrific service from start to finish (used three times already and a fourth booking now in place). Thank you, Ian, for putting so much effort into getting to know Freddie's character and routine before deciding which host to place him with. Thank you, Chris, for making Freddie so welcome and for taking him on such a fantastic range of walks. Not only does Freddie return well-exercised, happy and relaxed but we can go away knowing that he will be really well cared for.

Posted by: Rosemary, Peter and Tania on

I am delighted with the care and attention to detail that Ian brings. Also a big thanks to Gillian, who cares for Boddington and Sally, who cares for Sunday. I have needed to travel a lot and without the help of Ian, Gillian and Sally this would have been not only stressful on my part but also for my darling dogs. I cannot say enough in gratitude to you all.

Posted by: Jane Welch on

We had been looking for a suitable pet sitting service for a while and were very happy to find Barking Mad. Ian provides an excellent service and we felt comfortable and confident that Henry would be well cared for whilst we were away. Many thanks to Ian and Henry's host, Mary, who obviously treated him very well during his stay. We will definitely be using Barking Mad again.

Posted by: Jenny & Paul on

We just wanted to say many thanks for all your help and also if you could pass on our thanks to Chris for looking after Mia during our holiday. It was lovely to see her looking so well and content on our return compared to last year after her stay in kennels. It sounds as if they both had a lovely time so we will have to book up in advance next year to ensure that Chris is available again! :-)

Posted by: Rachel Thompson on

We'd like to send a big 'thankyou' to Sylvia and Derrick for giving Ruby a lovely holiday. We had a very happy puppy returned to us and felt very reassured by the postcard. We feel very confident about future bookings.

Posted by: JOANNA DAWE on

Ian provides a first class, wonderful service and we both would like to express our sincere thanks to him and the brilliant hosts Peter & Dallas. We both can go away knowing that our beautiful Labradoodle Meg is being well cared for. It really is a home from home experience for Meg and we are so grateful to Ian and Peter & Dallas for taking such good care of her. We have been using Barking Mad for about 8 years now and will continue to do so and wouldn't hesitate to recommend Ian and his team to anybody. Thank you once again for all that you do for us.

Posted by: Tess & Dave Gould on

Thank you for the excellent service you provide for our dog Odin! Ian has done an outstanding job regarding his flexibility with our constantly changing schedule as well as ensuring there is a place for him. Odin comes home tired and happy, the best thing an owner could ask for when they are away. This alone allows us to really enjoy time away as we trust Ian and his team implicitly while Odin is in their care. We are so thankful to have found Barking Mad! Thank you again for all you do on our behalf! :)

Posted by: Paul & Kim Hacker on

Ian provides a great service. My dogs board at the same home whenever we go away and they are clearly happy there. They always come back tired and sometimes washed which is a bonus!

Posted by: Andrew Roberts on

Thank you so much for taking such good care of Cobie. We are so pleased that we found Barking Mad and that they have great people like yourselves that are willing to take in other peoples pets. Cobie always comes home happy.
I did worry at first as he isn't the most sociable dog but to hear good things from you on the cards you write is reassuring. Thank you once again.

Posted by: Tracey & Cobie on

What a wonderful find Ian and his team have been! I know when Harry goes to stay with them he will be well looked after and that makes me very happy.

Posted by: Clivette and Harry on

A brilliant service, going away is even more enjoyable now knowing that our dog Willa is having as good a time away as us. “Fantastic” highly recommended

Posted by: Patsy and Willa on

Ian Carney provided us with a totally reassuring, sensitive and value for money service. We totally recommend Ian and his professionalism and discretion.

Posted by: Keith and Duke on

From our first meeting with Ian we felt completely at ease leaving Mack in Barking Mad’s capable hands. Mack seems to have had a wonderful time with Peter & Dallas. He was returned to us clean, groomed and tired. Peter & Dallas gave us a thoughtful & detailed account of Mack’s stay. Will definitely use this service again!!

Posted by: Sara and Mack on

I contacted Barking Mad at short notice to look after Fergus, our lovely 6 month old labrador puppy. The enquiry was handled very efficiently and Ian managed to find somewhere for him to go, which was a great relief. Fergus returned from his holiday happy and relaxed

Posted by: Jenny and Fergus on

Frome, Somerset wrote. We were totally happy with the service, more importantly
was the fact that all 4 dogs were happy & relaxed upon their return.

Posted by: Peter and Helen on

Fantastic Service, I especially loved the letter from the host family when Harvey came home

Posted by: Liz and Harvey on

Toast had a wonderful time with her host's and came home very happy and was extremely well looked after. Thank You!!

Posted by: Claire and Toast on

We were so pleased too see how relaxed and happy Jess was on her return home. She had obviously been well looked after by Gill and Michael.

Posted by: Vic and Jess on

We were extremely touched by the diary made for us by Freddie's host family.

Posted by: Sally and Freddie on

Stella was very happy and settled on her return home. She had obviously been well cared for and loved.

Posted by: Christine, Michael and Stella on


July 2017

This weekend 15th & 16th July!!!


Come and meet the barking mad team at our stand at ‘The Yeovil show’, which covers Yeovil and South Somerset.
Join us to see beautiful animals, gorgeous local food & drink, plenty of shopping. Heart stopping displays and much, much more!
We will be here to raise money for the dogs trust, we have many activities for you and the family. Doggie face painting, guess the dogs name? how many treats in the jar? Sweetie pic & mix, doggie lucky dip and doggie cupcakes!
We are currently recruiting host in this area, so if you would like to come along and have a friendly chat about becoming a host for barking mad, all doggie friendly people are welcome! https://www.yeovilshow.org/

April 2017

Helloo… My name is Jaz and I work for Barking Mad Bath & South Somerset. I currently live in Dorset with my partner and our two dogs.

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I have always loved animals from when I was a little girl and was lucky enough to grow up with them. As part of my GCSE’s I did a NVQ in animal care which included a variety of different animals but dogs have always been close to my heart. We had our first dog when I was 2 years old and haven’t been without one since. I now have a 6year old Working Cocker Spaniel called Roxy we are joined at the hip, she comes to work with me and loves to meet all the other doggies we see!

My mum started working for Barking Mad as an employee in 2016 and enjoyed it so much that she decided to buy and run the Bath and South Somerset and I was lucky enough to be her first employee and I love it!

Autumn 2016 

I am extremely lucky to be able to work alongside all the my amazing hosts. I invited them to an Afternoon Tea Party at 'Somerset Arms' in Maiden Bradley. I managed to have an impressive turn out of 32 people. It was great to spend some quality time with the people from my Barking Mad Bath & South Somerset family. They are all very dog loving, friendly people with a good sense of community.

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I raffled off a couple of Christmas Hampers and we raised £81.80 for Bath, Claverton Down Dogs & Cats Rescue Centre, where a couple of my hosts Volunteer on a weekly basis to take the dogs out on lovely walks.

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Every host family was given a Barking Mad 2017 Calendar ready for next years Dog holidays.
My hosts were very excited about entering the Barking Mad Yearly Competition of a Hot Air Balloon Ride for two with Champagne!

One of our Barking Mad Dogs 'Kevin' was lucky enough to be spoilt with lots of attention at the host party alongside one of a hosts friends doggie. 

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Autumn 2015

Book Cover low res.jpgOne of my former customers and now host has written a book about her recently departed and very much loved boxer Pugwash.

Book Cover low res.jpg‘Life With Pugwash The Boxer – caring for a dog with heart disease’

I became a client of Barking Mad in the Summer of 2014 when I needed Pugwash, my Boxer, to be looked after for four days. Sadly, Pugwash died at the end of January, 2015 at the age of almost nine, having been diagnosed with serious heart problems when he was 3 ½.

Looking after him was a huge responsibility, with five different lots of medication having to be given twice a day at set times. In order to keep his heart as healthy as possible, I needed to keep him in tip top physical condition at all times, through diet, exercise, massage and controlled play. I also had to watch him very carefully when he was exercising, but together we learned how to control his condition so that he lived much longer than the vets and cardiologists had expected. Being told he could drop dead at any moment when he was only three and a half years old is very distressing, but together we extended his time way beyond expectation.

I still miss him terribly, but because I want to travel quite a lot in the near future, I have not got another dog, but instead become a host for Barking Mad, which means I get to care for, love and cuddle other people’s dogs and it always gives me great pleasure and all the dogs I’ve had really seem to enjoy their time with me.

I wrote the book, not only as a tribute to Pugwash, but also to help other people and their dogs. The book is about my life with my beautiful friend and specifically about how to look after a dog with heart disease, but it also discusses puppy training, buying a purebred dog, finding the right Breeder, pet insurance and specifics about the Boxer breed. It’s also a heart-warming and amusing story of my life with dogs and particularly with regard to Boxers. It’s relevant for any dog owner, or potential dog owner, but it’s ESSENTIAL for anyone owning or thinking of owning a Boxer.

Her book has been published and is available on Amazon.

Local Links

We love working with and recommending local business, here are a list of fantastic people we think you might like to hear about:

My Links

Dog Grooming

Mobile dog wash and grooming service
Nikki: 07984 592268




Jacqui and Gary Wright - 10th Dec, 2015
"Hi Ian

Could you please pay our sincerest and grateful thanks to Sylvia and Derrick for looking after Kevin recently? He was obviously very well looked after and enjoyed his stay with them. He was most contented on his return so that can only mean he was completely contented during his stay with them. I really can't thank them enough for the excellent care they gave him and it is so reassuring to know he gets all the care and attention he would get at home. They really do give him a home from home and we hope that they will welcome him again in the future.

Jacqui & Gary Wright"

Martin & Fiona - 7th Dec, 2015
"This was the first time that we have used Barking Mad for our 18 months old Springer. Everything went according to plan from the day Ian collected Harley to the day he brought him back. We were updated a couple of times over the 2 days as to how Harley was getting on, even with a photo via WhatsApp, as well as having a final summary written by Wendy and Chris, giving us a run down of events. We would recommend this service to anyone and have already made enquiries for our next booking!"

Jane Padwick - 30th Nov, 2015
"We have been using Barking Mad since our dog, Ralphy, was a 4 month old puppy. He has been back to the same family every time we've been on holiday and we couldn't be happier with the service we have had. Ralphy is so happy to go off to his host family and we have total peace of mind that he is well cared for in a home-from-home environment. We love receiving the pictures of him having a great time and he always comes home as if nothing has changed. We couldn't recommend the services of Barking Mad more highly."

Michael Dwyer - 30th Jul, 2015
"very good service right from outset from the setting it all up right through to the return of the dog. very well looked after with regular texts etc to keep you informed of your dogs progress. well recommended. Posted by Michael Dyer"

Bev - 22nd Jul, 2015
"We used Barking Mad for the first time recently and we are so pleased we did. Ian got to know Ed our dog and by the time his home visit had ended you would of thought Ed had known him all his life ! Ed went off to his host family happy and contented and came home a happy boy , thank you so much for taking such good care of our boy we will be using your services again and again"

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