It’s amazing that this month we celebrated our 3rd Anniversary of running Barking Mad here in Fife and Kinross. We have hosts from the Crook of Devon all the way across to East Wemyss and we were delighted that they took the time out to join us and celebrate with a wee BBQ – we were even joined by Dave & Gordon who were both out on holiday. We are so grateful to our hosts and the trouble they always take to make sure the doggies they are look after have an amazing time. So a BIG thankyou and here’s to the next 3 years.
After our Remembrance Walk back in April so many people said they’d loved to have joined us but sadly couldn’t make it so we’ve decided to launch “Canine Capers & Cakes”. This is a quarterly walk where everyone is welcome and our first one took place this month at Leven Beach where we had 32 doggies tearing up the beach and having an amazing time. It was great to see so many having a wonderful time and not a single squabble amongst them. And it was nice to be joined by so many of our lovely customers who delighted to meet some our hosts for the very first time… next walk will be on the 26th November and we do hope you will be able to join us even if it is a wee bit chilly!
If it’s July this can mean only one thing – school holidays! And it’s been a very busy year for us but lovely to see so many furry friends old & new out with enjoying fabulous holidays with our fantastic hosts. It was great to see so many being able to join us at 2nd Chance Kennels annual fund raising event, Bark in the Park, at Loch Ore Meadows near Lochgelly. It’s a great day out for everyone – two legged and four legged! This year we raised an amazing £134 for the charity selling the great craft work done by the Barking Mad Hatters as well as liver treats and a “Guess my Name” competition.
At this month’s Dugs & Mugs walk we took the chance to celebrate John’s birthday – what better way than a windy beach, lots of four legged furbies tearing around… and of course cake!
We are delighted to say that we sponsored the Best Family Class at Fife Greyhound Rescue’s 10th Annual Show and we also had a stand there selling items made by our Barking Mad Hatters club. The day was a great success for them and they managed to raise over £2,500 which is amazing – if you think that £10 will feed 5 dogs for a week you can see how important this even is to keep them looking after the poor doggies in need of a forever home. If you want to find out more visit them at http://www.greyhoundrescuefife.com/
And another very proud moment for us was winning “Most Improved Business” at the annual Barking Mad Conference. We’d like to take the chance to thank all of our wonderful hosts who do such an amazing job looking after the doggies and helping us ensure that we deliver a 5 star service – thank you.
There was also a 3rd celebration this month as we took the chance at our Dugs & Mugs walk at Pettycur Bay, Kinghorn to sing Happy Birthday to one of our special hosts who was celebrating a special birthday. It might have been a wee bit damp but that didn’t dampen our spirits and we had a wonderful time.
To mark Dog Remembrance Month we opened up our monthly Dugs & Mugs to anyone & everyone who wanted to join us at Leven Beach for a walk. It was a chance for people to reflect on doggies who are no longer with us but who have brought us so much joy and left so many paw prints on our hearts. For the doggies who joined us it was a chance for them to have a great run around, playing in the surf and chasing balls across the sand. Afterwards we had a great gossip with a cuppa and a slice of cake – Elaine had been busy baking the day before!
Even with a busy start to the year we’ve launched our new host craft club – Barking Mad Hatters… why? Well last year sadly one of hosts passed away very suddenly and his wife was understandably at a complete loss. As she would no longer be able to host she was also sadden by the thought of no longer being part of the Barking Mad Family. You don’t get away that easily we said… what else do you love to do? Knitting was the answer and so the Barking Mad Hatters craft club was born. We meet once a month at Rejects in Kirkcaldy to have a coffee, share ideas and give each other any help that’s needed. Anything that is made by the club will be sold in aid of our chosen two local charities – 2nd Chance Kennels, based in Thornton, and Fife Greyhound Rescue
What happened to Christmas? It seems to have flown by but we started our festivities in the best way possible – hosting a wee party to say a BIG thank you to all our wonderful hosts. We had a great afternoon and it was a real pleasure to hear them all chatting away about the lovely doggies they had been looking after and the fun and happiness it brings them.
We both believe that doggies know when they are being looked after by someone who really cares and that’s true for all our hosts. They all love dogs which is why your four legged best friend always come home so relaxed and happy… it’s also why we continue to get so many 5 star reviews from our customers. We love to hear how pleased our customers are and our hosts love to know that they truly are appreciated.
It’s that time of year again where for most of us it’s a time of celebration, catching up with family and friends and having fun. However for some it can be lonely time… fortunately here at Barking Mad we can make sure you are never lonely. Being a host and part of our community is not just about looking after doggies… it’s about being part of our wee Barking Mad family. We like to catch up with everyone for a natter, have coffee mornings, Dugs & Mugs walks and of course our Christmas Party. So if you fancy joining us or know someone who would then give us a call.
If you’re looking for a Christmas tree and fancy something a bit quirky then get your skates on and pop down to Portmoak Moss by Scotlandwell (on the A92 between Leslie and Kinross) on Sunday 11th December. You can pick your own tree and they’ll cut it down for you – trees are free but you can make a donation to Portmoak Community Woodland if you want. There are hot drinks and mince pies too.
We’d like to take this chance to wish all our customers and our special hosts a very Merry Christmas and best wishes for the New Year.
Well we had a fantastic summer and with being so busy with so many dogs coming out on holiday with us the months just flew by. Between July and August we drove over 2,300 miles with doggies and truly covered our area from Crook of Devon, down to Comrie and all along the coast through Dalgety Bay, Burntisland, Kirkcaldy and East Wemyss back up to Glenrothes and Kinross – we had doggies everywhere! It was great this month to catch up with our lovely hosts and treat them to breakfast cob and cuppa while we all swapped stories and shared photos of our four legged guests.
And if that wasn’t busy enough for us we were also joined by a new member to our wee clan – Willow. A gorgeous tri-colour Cocker Spaniel she has made herself right at home in our pack and has caused great amusement with our hosts.
A busy start to the summer…...
We were delighted to be invited to the inaugural Burntisland Dog Show and Elaine had a tough time judging the puppy class and the pedigree class with so many fabulous dogs in the ring. It was also great to see so many of you there and get a chance to have a wee chat & doggie cuddles
…Dugs & Mugs on a Sunday
You may have seen on Facebook pictures of your lovely pooch join us on one of our Sunday walks. Nicknamed “Dugs & Mugs” it’s a chance for hosts to join us for a walk with any holiday dogs and a wee cuppa afterwards - they’re always enjoyed by all and we’ve been to Lochore Meadows, up the hills from Pitcairn, Glenrothes and down the beach at Leven… we’re looking at organising a customer walk too so if you’re interested let us know.
BIG CONGRATULATIONS to our fabulous host Joyce…
We’d like to wish Joyce a massive happy birthday as she turns 80 this year. She is a wonderful host and has had over 50 doggies come and stay with her on holiday. We were lucky as she joined us for one of our walks and brought along a birthday cake she’d been given – of course it had dogs on it!
Bracken’s Bonus Winners
We have 3 more lucky doggies who have one double loyalty paw prints for their latest holidays, April’s winner is the adorable Sapper, May’s winner is the delightful Daisy and June’s the lovely Levi – congratulations to you all and can’t wait to see you all again.
Alzheimer Scotland inaugural “Walkies”
If you can’t make the Great British Dog Walk why not join us for the inaugural “Walkies” events being hosted by Alzheimer Scotland during Dementia Awareness week. It’s taking place at Lochore Meadows on Saturday 4th June starting at 9.30am… for more information click here.
More great walks to enjoy:
And keeping my New Years resolution to bring you walks I have two great places for you this month. The first I discovered recently and it starts at Pitcairn Centre, Glenrothes KY7 6ET where there’s good parking. From here you have a choice of routes, a gentle stroll round Coul Den reservoir to a more challenging hike that can take up the Lomonds (or as far as you like).
And the other great location is Devilla Forest Trail which is just off the A985 between Dunfermline and Kincardine – it’s well sign posted so you can’t miss the car park. There’s a network of forest roads and paths to explore and a great chance to see red squirrels in the Scots Pine trees – the Red Squirrel Trail is only just over a mile but there are 700ha to keep you going.
Fundraising Quiz Night for The Guide Dogs for the Blind
Why not join us at Gallagher’s in Kirkcaldy on the 29th April at 7.30pm where we’ll have a Barking Mad team taking part in the quiz. It will it be a great night supporting a great cause and also a chance to chat to our wonderful Barking Mad hosts. For information about the quiz and ticket availability please call Alison at The Guide Dogs on 07921 337939
And a great café too…
I’ve found a fabulous doggie friendly café in Kinghorn, The Barn at The Loch, thanks to my wonderful host Thora who’s been looking after the beautiful Bo for the last three months. It’s great having a cheeky latte and a blether whilst the pooch is curled up at your feet and if you’ve indulged in a slice of cake there’s plenty of paths to stroll around.
Winner of Bracken’s Bonus
March’s winner of Bracken’s Bonus is Max, who enjoys double loyalty points for his last holiday… well done Max – can’t wait to see you again.
Bracken’s Tip Bit
A lot of my customers ask what the treats are I use when I first meet their dogs or when I come to collect them as the doggies always love them – even those who are not normally food obsessed. The secret – they’re made by my husband for Bracken and his buddies. They really are very simple to make and only takes three ingredients:
Recipe – 500g lambs liver, 2tbsp dried parsley and 2tbsp dried mint. In a food mixer blitz the lamb’s liver until it is a paste and then mix in the dried parsley and mint. Take a sheet of grease proof paper, lay it on a baking tray and spread the mixture evenly to a thickness of approximately 3mm – 5mm. Then place it in an oven at 50c for approximately 10 hours and then turn over. Give it another couple of hours by which time the liver will be dried out but still soft. Now just cut into small pieces as a very tasty treat for you pooch.
The Great British Dog Walk on Behalf of Hearing Dogs for Deaf
A date for your diaries folks and also help support a very good cause. We’re very proud to supporting this very worthy cause and it’s a great day out for you and your doggie. You can choose from two beautiful routes, 3km or 8km, at one of Scotland’s finest Edwardian mansion houses. We look forward to seeing many of our wonderful customers and hosts there.
Hill of Tarvit, Fife, KY15 5PB
5th June 2016 at 11am
To book and save £2 per ticket click here
Recommend a friend and your dog receives a free day on their next holiday. Also if you know someone who would be a perfect Barking Mad host please let me know and again you will receive a free day for your dog if they sign up.
Well I can’t believe that 2015 has passed already and it’s been such an amazing year meeting so many wonderful doggies and seeing them have such fabulous holidays. To celebrate we had a wee Christmas party for hosts old and new – it was a great afternoon of swapping tales and having a laugh at some of the escapades that pooches get up to.
If you are interested in becoming a host then come and join us at Dobbies, Dalgety Bay for a coffee on 4th February… you can have a chat with fellow hosts and find out what it’s all about.
My resolution this year is to find and share dog friendly walks in Fife – some will be easy whilst others might be a bit more of an effort but all will guarantee a fun time for your dog. First up is Portmoak Moss, just beside Scotlandwell, and is a loop of approximately 1 mile on the flat. There’s a good path goes through woodland and round the peat bog which is being restored but if it’s been raining wear your wellies as there’ll be lots of puddles. Most days there’s a small herd of deer grazing in the middle and if you’re lucky you’ll see a red squirrel.
There’s space to park and would recommend you start your walk beside the stables - to find it on a map simply click here
September / October 2015
You learn something new every day working here…
Have you ever heard of the Thunder Shirt? It’s a coat for helping dogs to become calm when their either anxious, frightened or over excited. At a recent registration I was shown one in action on a retriever who was a young bouncy boy who was super excited to meet me – the calming effect though was instant. I’m always a bit sceptical about such products but was so impressed that I had to look into it more and I’m now getting one for Shadow my very own bouncy boy!
Why not join me on Facebook?
It’s official - I now have a new Facebook page… this is where you can see what doggies really get up to on their holidays with lots of photos and videos. It’s also where I’ll be posting special limited offers so to keep up to date with my latest news simply like the page – you can find it here
September’s winner is the very happy boy Korey the Springer who enjoyed an awesome holiday with his host Shyloh (the cute Shih Tzu) and October’s winners are the delightful duo Ruby & Coco who had a fabulous break in the country - both enjoy double loyalty points!
New service now available - Richard’s Holistic Pets
Some great news to share with you. One of my fabulous hosts Richard has started providing the complimentary therapy Animal Reiki in Burntisland. This therapy is used to help stressed or ill animals in conjunction with veterinary treatment and uses natural healing energy. If you want to find out more give him a call on 07548 035492.
Well officially that’s summer over and whilst the weather hasn’t been great here in Fife all our doggies have enjoyed a fabulous summer holiday… whether in the park, at the beach or in the garden they’ve all made the best of it and had wonderful time….
And it’s all down to my wonderful team of hosts who all just love looking after doggies… so as a wee thank you we enjoyed another high tea at Dalgety Bay and a good old blether. If you’re interested in becoming a host and want to find out more, just give me a call and we can have a wee chat.
We can’t forget Bracken’s Bonus… the winner this month is the amazing Poppy, who I think you’ll agree that age 17, is just adorable.
There’s been so much going on over the last couple of months here in Fife, it’s hard to decide what to share with you all. We’ve had lots of doggies enjoying their summer holidays with us, despite the weather, whilst you’ve all been off having your own fun in the sun. Before we hit our busiest time of the year, I took the opportunity to spoil my hosts with a wee ‘afternoon tea’ treat. We all had a lovely time at Dobbies in Dalgety Bay, sharing our dog stories and just enjoying the company of so many dog loving friends.
We’ve recently had a fantastic weekend supporting Second Chance Kennels at ‘Bark in the Park 2015’, Lochore Meadows. What an amazing turn out this year and thankfully the rain held off for us. As well as donating a Barking Mad Hamper, we also raised further cash for a great cause with our ‘Blue Dog’ by guessing his birthday. We were also joined by lots of customers, hosts and ‘holiday dogs’, a wee hello got them 6 loyalty points on their cards. It really was a great opportunity to meet so many lovely dogs and their owners who came and had a chat our stall.
Bracken’s Bonus is also going down a treat…………Bernard, Stimpy and our family trio of boys Finn, Ozzy and Jake have all earned double loyalty points for their holidays over the last few months. So many customers are enjoying that extra free day.
Exciting piece of news to share about Bracken’s Bonus – can you believe April marked 6 months already? To celebrate Bracken decided that we should not have 1, not even 2 but that we needed to have 3 lucky winners. So those lucky pooches who won double loyalty paw points are:
2. Archie & Bramble
Whilst Bracken was picking his winners Bracken Junior enjoyed a wee holiday with the McHale family in Tenerife making sure the kids didn’t forget about Charlie & Daisy who were enjoying their holiday too.
And a date for the diary – Sunday 26th July is “Bark in the Park” at Lochore Meadows, Lochgelly. It’s a real fun day with lots to do and see. There are stalls, raffles and competitions for everyone young and old to enjoy as well as a chance to see lots of doggies of all shapes and sizes. So come along and show your support for Second Chance Kennels and when you do don’t be a stranger – come and say hello as we’ll have a stand there.
Finally, do you know a dog friendly café or pub in your area that would like a tub of doggie biscuits to share with our canine friends? If you do let me know and I’ll pop by with a tub... after all if you’re enjoying a pie and a pint your friend will enjoy a bowl and a biscuit. You’ll already find tubs in the following places:
The Well Country Inn, Scotlandwell
The Muirs Inn, Kinross
The Wemyss Central Hotel, East Wemyss
The Rustic Dog, Blairhall
We love working with and recommending local business, here are a list of fantastic people we think you might like to hear about:
Lomond Hills Vet Clinic
106 High Street, Leslie, KY6 3DB
Tel: 01592 748868
Equipet Links Vet Surgeons
High Street, Burntisland, KY3 9AP
Tel: 01592 871333
St Clair Vet Group
2 Pottery street, Kirkcaldy, KY1 3ET
Tel: 01592 599500
62 Muirs, Kinross, KY13 8AU
Tel: 01577 863328
Jaws, Paws and Claws
Unit 13, Dunfermline, KY12 7SN
Tel: 01383 735879
48 Nasmyth Road, Glenrothes, KY6 2SD
Tel: 07990 670037
Harry Greig, Glenrothes
Tel: 01592 770524
Dog Gone Walking
Claire Murison, Kinross
Tel: 01577 830588
DOG TRAINERS / BEHAVIOURIST
Harry Greig, Glenrothes
Tel: 01592 770524