About Me

My Photo
ipswich, suffolk, United Kingdom
HOLIDAY DOGS is a new local service designed to help loving doggy owners (like myself!) to find appropriate home boarding for their best friends. Most people nowadays prefer to board their dog within a loving home environment, maintaining their pets routine and ensuring they are happy and content as they are with you. This is, after all the perfect alternative to kennelling! However it’s not always easy to find the perfect dog loving carer who can offer all of these things – well LOOK NO FURTHER! Due to the increasing demand of home boarding I decided to set up HOLIDAY DOGS, with the help of my chosen dog loving host families. I am now able to offer more and more owners peace of mind whilst they are away from home due to holidays, work etc. Each of my host families are genuine dog lovers and due to their working commitments being extrememly low, they are able to provide your dog with the ultimate care & comfort, giving you absolute peace of mind, flexibility and security. Each host family are fully insured and have been carefully selected by Holiday Dogs. Call Mary-Ann on 07712 270415 for more information, or visit www.holidaydogs.co.uk

Tuesday, 24 January 2012

Meet the Holiday Dogs Host Carers!

Holiday Dogs are proud to present a first class selection of host carers, all waiting to give lots of love, care and attention to any holiday dog! So take a look for yourself and see what we can offer you and your dog(s).  All our hosts welcome you to pay them a visit with your dog(s), just give Mary-Ann a call on 07712 270415


Sue Payne, Ipswich
Pictured with Izzy (puppy holiday dog!)
Sue and her partner Adrian have many years experience of owning and working with dogs and have been with Holiday Dogs since the very beginning!  As they currently have no pets of their own, they just love having a holiday dog to look after, no matter how big or small, they are always up for a challenge!

Through their dedication and devotion of being Holiday Dogs Hosts they have recently completed a course on 'canine communication', by Talking Paws, a workshop specifically for humans to gain more knowledge and understand on dog's behaviour and how to communicate effectively with them.

Any dog is thoroughly spoiled at Adrian and Sue's, with a lovely sized garden to run around in and daily healthland walks as well!


Wendy and Midge! Ipswich
After boarding her friend's dogs for the past few years, Wendy decided to join Holiday Dogs to give others the opportunity to enjoy a loving holiday with her and cocker spaniel, Midge!

Wendy jointly owns the Ipswich 24 Magazine with her partner Mark, and is also the proud owner of www.doghousesuffolk.co.uk.  Working from home, Wendy is able to devote lots of time, love and cuddles to any holiday dog.

Wendy has a wealth of experience as she has both owned and trained a number of different dogs.  She was a member of the Ipswich German Shepherd Dog Training Club in the 90's and has also taken part in dog obedience training.  Wendy has re-homed rescue dogs and has experience of some of the issues that arise when a rescue dog joins your family.

Wendy always welcomes an extra dog on board and her cocker spaniel Midge eagerly awaits some more canine company!


Barbara and Rufus, Sutton Heath, Woodbridge

Barbara has bred, shown and owned dogs all her life and being retired is able to devote lots of love, care and attention in giving dogs a wonderful holiday.  With the help of Rufus her boarder terrier, they offer a warm welcome to any holiday dog!

Ideally based at Sutton Heath they have access to many wonderful heathland walks – what more could a dog ask for!

Pauline and John (Melton, Woodbridge)

 John and Pauline are the proud owners of Tilly and Minnie, their gorgeous cavalier king Charles spaniels!  John and Pauline have taken early retirement so together with Tilly and Minnie are able to offer a warm welcome to holiday dogs anytime. 


Tilly and Minnie are lucky to own such a lovely sized garden and love to share it with other dogs to have some canine playtime.  They are also ideally located in Melton, nr St Audry’s Park, with many heathland, woodland and riverside walks being one of the daily choices. Tilly and Minnie love it and sure that any holiday dog will too!

Mary-Ann (owner of Holiday Dogs) 
with her family, and holiday dogs at Christmas!

Mary-Ann with the help of husband Sean, 2 children Daniel and Matthew, together with 3 dogs, Eric, Lucy and Casper, are able to offer a fun, happy environment to any holiday dog while owners are away.  Socialisation is the key to a happy household here, with their regular boarding and day care dogs, this home offers lots of play and fun, followed by more play and fun!

Located next to Foxhall Heath Eric, Lucy and Casper are always keen to share their home and walks with dogs of all ages, young or old.  Mary-Ann works from home as a dog groomer and shares her working day (and night!) with giving dogs a fun and rewarding holiday experience!

House Sitting Service

Also provided is a house sitting service which provides care and comfort for your pets from your own home, particularly useful should you have multiple pets!

The House Sitting couple both work as councillors in Suffolk and adore dogs and other animals, they are always keen to provide love, care and attention and are 100% reliable when it comes to looking after your pets, as well as your home!

If you would like to meet with the house sitters then please call Mary-Ann on 07712 270415, who will be happy to arrange for them to be introduced to you and your pets! 

Sunday, 10 July 2011

Holiday Dogs Group Walks (Sponsored by Hudson Signs)

Holiday Dogs Group Walks are designed to give dogs and owners a chance to meet and greet, and to basically go for a group walk together.  They are open to anyone, any age so come along (with a dog if you have one) and help raise money for the Animal Health Trust to help with their investigations into Seasonal Canine Illness.  Walks are at various locations around Suffolk and usually lasts around 1 hour to 1 hour 30 mins.  Registration is £5 with all proceeds going to the Animal Health Trust.  Register your interest with Mary-Ann on 07840 871547.


Next Charity Group Walk, Sunday 5th February 2012, meeting at Butley Corner Car Park, Rendlesham for a walk around Daisy's Walk.  Registration is £5 per dog, all proceeds going to the AHT, please call Mary-Ann on 07712 270415 to register your interest and to receive a sponsor form!
Holiday Dogs Group Walk in aid of the Animal Health Trust 

4th December 2011
Holiday Dogs and www.doghousesuffolk.co.uk organised a 'Sponsor Your Dog' Charity Group Walk to raise money and awareness for SEASONAL CANINE ILLNESS (SCI), all proceeds going to the Animal Health Trust to help them within their investigations into SCI.  
We had a great turnout today with lots of excited dogs, and rather cold owners as we battled against the cold wind of Felixstowe, where we met at the Manor Terrace Car Park.  
Despite the cold weather, a thoroughly enjoyable walk was had by all.  Thanks to Wendy from www.doghousesuffolk.co.uk who lead the walking route around the Languard Fort area.  
The dogs had a fantastic time as always, happily running around together - little did they know they were raising money for the Animal Health Trust to help them with their investigations into Seasonal Canine Illness!  Altogether we managed to raise almost £300 for the Animal Health Trust! Two dogs who were in the group had contracted Seasonal Canine Illness this year and luckily now back to health, running around and enjoying their Sunday stroll.


The next Charity Group Walk will be held on Sunday 5th February, for a walk at Rendlesham Forest.  Meeting at 11am in the Butley Corner Car Park for the Daisy's Walk.  Registration is £5 per dog, please call Mary-Ann on 07840 871547 to register your interest and to obtain a sponsor form!


Photos below contributed by www.doghousesuffolk.co.uk



Rohan trying to get to the Jumbone - generously provided as free goodies to all dogs who participated, by 'We're for Dogs' facebook page




HOLIDAY DOGS GROUP WALK - Languard Fort Peninsula, Felixstowe, Sunday 4th September.

Our latest walk was held in Felixstowe where we walked a lovely route around the Languard Fort peninsula lead by Wendy, a Holiday Dogs Host Carer and owner of  www.doghousesuffolk.co.uk.



 All dogs were very well behaved as they walked through the nature reserve on leads so not to disturb any migrating birds and rare plants.  They were then free to enjoy a very well deserved play together on the beach as they all had a friend to share either a run around in the sand or a swim in the sea!  What more could a dog ask for on a sunny Sunday afternoon!


Holiday Dogs have received lots of positive feedback from owners saying how much their dog has benefited from the group walks, especially from the social stimulation that they gain - and of course the owners get to enjoy a lovely walk with great company!

The next group walk will be held on Sunday 9th October where we will enjoy a stroll at Daisy's Walk, Rendlesham, meeting at Butley Corner Car Park at 11am.  Please call Mary-Ann on 07840 871547 or use the contact page on www.holidaydogs.co.uk.

Holiday Dogs Group Walk attended 'Camilles Appeal' Sunday 21st!

Camilles Appeal Guided Walk
We explored this beautiful area by taking part in a 4-mile guided walk.  This started from the grounds at the Suffolk food hall where we walked part of the popular Wherstead walking route. Money was donated to Camilles Appeal, further details visit www.camillesappeal.co.uk/Events



Our Group Walk in Stowmarket, 24th July 2011

What a wonderful walk!  We met up at Chilton Sports and Social Club and all enjoyed a very scenic walk through corn fields with lovely views of the poppy fields.
We all commented on what a wonderful sight it was to see the dogs running around together, especially at the end where they enjoyed a good old splash around in a water-filled ditch, covered in mud they were truly content!!
The walk lasted for about 1 hour 15 minutes, and with exhausted (and dirty) dogs we met up afterwards and enjoyed a well deserved cup of tea (or in my case hot chocolate!) at the sports club.

Such a lovely walk, I think we shall be returning back here again in a few months to enjoy the Autumn fall looking pretty!

Our next walk is on 4th September at Felixstowe, meeting in the Manor Car Park at 12 noon for a walk around Languard Fort.
So tired after his group walk, Eric decides to crash out on the shopping bags!



Our group walk in Playford



What a beautiful place for walking -  living just a 6 minute drive away, I never thought about venturing off into Playford!

Thanks to Veronica (owner of one of my holiday dogs!) for showing us the way and leading us to some beautiful views across stunning fields, with lots of fun places for the dogs to explore!


especially getting wet and muddy - the dirtier the better (according to these dogs!)

Off through another field, this time with plenty of cows for the dogs to look at (and vice verca!)

Our next walk will be on 24th July at Chiltern Sports and Social Club, Stowmarket, meeting at 11am.

Saturday, 25 June 2011

Holiday Dogs Group Walk - Long Strops Kesgrave


Our group walk, held in Kesgrave on 25th June we enjoyed a leisurely stroll through Long Strops, into the woods and back again!


The dogs were very excited to meet each other again, it's great to see them getting to know each other that little bit more each time.




Dan from Flipper Foto attends each walk, merrily snapping away at anything that catches his eye - here are a few photos from our recent event - for more please visit FlipperFoto .  If you would like Dan to take a photo of your pet pooch then feel free to ask him at the beginning of the walk so he can look out for that perfect pose!





Monday, 13 June 2011

HOLIDAY DOGS Group Walks - Orwell Country Park

Orwell Country Park, 12th June 2011


Holiday Dogs Group Walks are designed to give dogs and owners a chance to meet and greet, and to basically go for a group walk together.  It’s all completely free, no need to register, just turn up (with a dog if you have one) and is open to any age or ability.  Walks are at various locations around Suffolk and usually lasts around 1 hour to 1 hour 30 mins.
Another enjoyable event was had by all at Orwell Country Park on Sunday 12th June. 
Lots of keen and excited dogs gathered around with their owners,  getting to know each other  in great detail - sniffing around each other’s hind quarters (that’s the dogs of course!) before going for a relaxing stroll through the woods.

What a lovely way to spend a Sunday morning!  The weather was perfect for walking and the atmosphere had a great feel to it, the sound of voices from our chatting owners, not to mention the laughter as our host Mary-Ann was almost pulled into the river by a ‘holiday dog’  and of course the sound of the doggies feet as they ran through wet sand!
Rohan with his new safestix from www.melrosemutt.com

That’s what our group walks are all about, it’s a great opportunity to walk and talk, and to let our doggies roam around with each other – it’s always nicer if you have a friend to share an interesting sniff or two, and to compete with marking territories here and there with!


Our next event will be held on Saturday 25th June at Long Strops Kesgrave at 11am.  Meeting in the car park located on Bell Lane, Kesgrave seewww.comberenterprises.co.uk/apps/WikkaKTC/LongStrops 



Jodie having a cuddle with Roxie after having a lovely walk together!

Monday, 9 May 2011

HOLIDAY DOGS Group Walk - Needham Lakes

Holiday Dogs Group Walk at Needham Lakes

Our bunch at Needham Lakes ready to get going
Don't let the "12 mile" part put you off, we actually
followed a different trail. Possible a bit too trigger
happy with the camera.
Just over a month later from it's Suffolk launch in Rendlesham Forest, Holiday Dogs Group Walk is out and about for the second time. Last Sunday the 31 strong group of like minded dog walkers took to the paths of Needham Lake for an enjoyable Sunday stroll.

There was a definite variety of canines that came to enjoy the sunshine (and contend with the numerous swans) as everyone took a calm and relaxing walk along the waters edge. From the likes of the big friendly Great Dane and the surprisingly aquatic Springer Spaniel all the way to the gorgeously fluffy Westies, all seemed to enjoy themselves. Not too hot and not too cold, in the words of Goldilocks, just right.

Undeniably cute.
As well as being an enjoyable day for everyone, it's particularly beneficial for those four legged ones, who always love to socialise with each other. It does them the world of good to meet and greet each other (in a way that only dogs can), so they can learn their people skills just like we do. Only slightly differently, because we're not dogs of course.

So keep an eye on the website here for any more events that might just tickle your fancy, and as always, we're open for suggestions of those lovely walking routes that you might know of.

If dog's had a calendar, i'm sure they'd have the next Big Walkies scribbled down somewhere as well.


 Below I have included some pictures I managed to take during the walk. If you see you or your dog and you'd like a copy of either the images below or the one above, drop me an e-mail at d.sherwood-clarke@hotmail.co.uk and i'll be able to supply you with a higher quality image. The same goes for anyone who'd like to know if I snapped their doggy and didn't appear on this blog. All for free of course, i'm nice like that.




In the words of a group member, "You just can't
keep a Springer out of water". Too true.

N'awwww. 
A post swim Springer on the left hand side
The next Holiday Dogs event will be held on Sunday 12th June at Orwell Country Park meeting at 11am. Please visit www.holidaydogs.co.uk for more information and to register your interest.

Tuesday, 29 March 2011

Big Walkies - Rendlesham Forest - March 27th

The first Big Walkies group at Rendlesham Forest

A great first Big Walkies event on Sunday! It was great to see lots of people attend our first of many forthcoming Big Walkies gatherings.

Exploring the shrubbery
At around midday we all took a walk along the 'Red Trail' in Rendlesham forest, which everyone enjoyed, especially the doggies, who found unrivaled entertainment in running in and around bushes and shrubbery. To those little canines, a big enough tree with some bracken around is like a theme park! They were all very well behaved, and were all really full of energy, especially when they first met each other, definitely some very excited dogs. After the healthy 3 mile walk, they all looked tired and in need of a good drink and some sleep. Well, our little cockadoodle Eric certainly did!

 That's what Big Walkies is all about, giving dogs and their owners a chance to meet other dog lovers, and take a relaxed approach to something your dogs will love.


Our group walking along the trail
Keep an eye on my blog, or look on the Big Walkies website for more details about upcoming walks around your area.

As always, we are open to suggestions regarding walks that you either know or have heard about, that are ideal family friendly and entertaining places that will be enjoyed by people and your doggies alike!

Any comments you might have about the walk are always appreciated, so feel free. 

Feel free to come along to our next event, even if you didn't come on Sunday. Big Walkies is designed for everyone and anyone, and any dog at all, from big to small (like little Roxy on the left).

Saturday, 26 March 2011

Walkies Dog Grooming Salon, Kesgrave

Walkies Dog Grooming Salon, Kesgrave. Looking for model doggies to assist me within my training. I am currently offering my 'wash n go' service with prices starting from £10! If you have a dirty dog in need of a good wash and/or trim then please contact me to book an appointment. I'm also offering a de-shedding service, great for doggies who loose lots of hair around the house! Feel free to call Mary-Ann on 07840 871547, or visit www.walkieskesgrave.me.uk