The DogPeople Blog
Dog friendly articles and ideas
Dogpeople Limited is a small company dedicated to helping people find places to take their dog on holiday or day out. Our operations produce very low environmental impact but our size restricts the non-business contributions we can make to society. None-the-less we try hard to minimise our negative impact and to make positive contributions beyond our immediate aim of promoting responsible dog ownership.
Our business is solely devoted to development and maintenance of this website and related activity. It runs from a small office space. Most of our operations rely on electronic and postal communication but we travel to visit leisure providers who welcome dogs, record dog friendly walks (see our Walks Directory), to market our services and otherwise meet stakeholders. Because our customers and visitors are across the whole of the UK some of our journeys are quite significant.
The directors are keen to use our limited influence and spare resources to highlight dog, pet and other animal welfare, to promote responsible dog ownership and to support some ‘people’ causes.
Company policy is to strive to improve responsible dog ownership – especially in the holiday sector. During 2008 we launched our own Dog Friendly Rating System. This is designed to help advertisers provide more for owners who take their dog on holiday or a day out – especially to help guests remain responsible if something important was inadvertently left at home (food, scoop bags, lead etc.). We hope the initiative also helps draw attention to dog owning visitors to what they might do to behave responsibly when they are away from home with their pet. Our system is designed with specific criteria for dog friendly holiday cottages (and other self catering accommodation where dogs will be welcome), B&Bs where dogs are allowed, hotels that accept dogs, holiday parks where the whole family – including its canine companion – can stay and, pubs, cafes etc. where people can enjoy a meal with their dog.
We have worked with various other stakeholders to promote responsible ownership and dog welfare. In so doing we have challenged others’ policies, provided our perspective on a positive way forward and publicised progress through our Blog and E-Newsletters.
Hamish was a big cricket fan – well he liked cricket balls and cricket teas! He watched games quite intensely at times – but probably only when he thought the ball might come his way. Lottie is happy to go to watch but is less interested in balls; her focus was on the director when he's playing or umpiring. Murphy likes to be included too – but probably best likes a good walk whilst the game is underway. The directors like the game too, one played regularly. Because of this strong connection with cricket we’ve been happy to help out (as do the directors personally).
Whitstable Cricket Club - was a second home for one of the directors for many years starting with watching his dad play, then an introduction to playing cricket in the 1960s. His first adult game for the club was in that decade too; his most recent in 2013. The Club provided many an opportunity beyond playing cricket with an informal youth club in the 1970s and development of a variety skills and a work ethic by serving on various committees and work parties. The Club is now successful with both the 1XI and 2XI playing in The Kent League. The 3XI is progressing up The Kent Regional Cricket League. Young cricketers are well provided for from 'beginners' via a thriving 'Quick Cricket' set up on Saturday mornings at the Club's Belmont home. There are very competitive Colts teams (for girls as well as boys). If you're in Whitstable on a match day it will be worth spending a bit of time watching a game - there's no charge and well behaved dogs are welcome on leads in the ground. Dogpeople Limited was among the Club's sponsors in 2013.
Leeds and Broomfield CC – one of the directors played here for several seasons (after he became too old to be selected at Whitstable CC), was a committee member and Club Captain in 2007. The Club has a strong youth section and an adult ladies team. It has a long term project to raise funds for young player development. To contribute towards this the company devised and ran a sponsored walking event in 2006. Much to the credit of a few L&BCC members the event raised a four figure sum. The ground is leased from Leeds Castle and is a wonderful location to watch cricket of a good standard. A footpath runs from the bottom of the ground to the castle so, even if you are not an avid cricket fan, a trip here will provide a good afternoon out with your dog.
Boughton under Blean CC – one of the directors has an even longer connection with this village club. Hamish loved opportunity to wander around its picturesque ground; a delight Lottie adopted when she had the chance. Hamish discovered many balls lost to human senses (a skill not yet developed by Lottie). Murphy like to visit too – but his nose is more attuned to furry beasties than cricket balls so he has to be kept firmly on his lead (the owner of the ‘big house’ keeps pheasants and there are lots of squirrels). The company sponsored the Club’s website stats package. The company provides free directory adverts for two of the club's other dog friendly sponsors; one is a pub with great food where you can eat with your dog (The Queen’s Head) and the other is the gardens of the big house (Mount Ephraim Gardens). We were delighted to help BuBCC by organising a sponsored walk on 6 June 2009. We devised and recorded routes, printed walking instructions and staffed 'check in'. Support from The Kent Pet Airedale Club and other dog walkers was very welcome. We, and the Club, were pleased the event raised nearly a thousand pounds.
The company is happy to try and help other good causes.
John O’Groats to Land’s End cycle – an intrepid band, known as The Biking Turtles, cycled the length of the UK in May 2009 to raise funds for Demelza House Children’s Hospice and Preston Skreens Care Centre (for children with severe learning difficulties). All the participants – both cyclists and support driver – were colleagues of the directors in a former working life. Both the company and directors personally sponsored this initiative. The company gave it publicity and hope some of our site visitors and E-Newsletter subscribers pledged funds for these two very worthwhile children’s charities. We are delighted to report the 'Turtles' raised an amazing £8,000 - deep respect!
From June 2012 the company is proud to publicise the work of Hounds for Heroes. A charity recommended to us by the directors' cousin Marilyn following a bequest to the charity from her husband Ian's estate. The charity was formed after a dog changed the founder's life (very much for the better!) and now strives to train dogs to help other injured and disabled armed services personnel and members of the civilian emergency services.