Let Barking Mad bring dogs into your life

A Shropshire businesswoman is having a coffee afternoon to spread the word that she can bring dog companionship into your life – even if you can’t make a long-term commitment

“Barking Mad is all about making dogs and people happy,” says Anne Kessell, of Muxton, Telford. “We arrange loving holidays for dogs, in a home environment, rather than a kennel. That way the dogs are happy, the owner is happy, and the host is happy.”

The hosts in question here are dog lovers who are unable to have a dog permanently in their lives, but who enjoy sharing their home with a dog from time to time.

“By becoming a Barking Mad host and looking after someone else’s dog while they’re on holiday you can have the best of both worlds,” says Anne. “You get the benefits of dog ownership without the permanent commitment – or expense!”

Anne runs the Telford and Shrewsbury branch of Barking Mad, which has a national network of dog lovers, and aims to create local communities for their host families. Having a dog provides purpose, companionship and encourages healthy exercise, all of which makes people feel happier and healthier.

The coffee afternoon is happening at The British Ironwork Centre in Oswestry, on Tuesday 25th April, from 1.00p.m. until 3.00p.m. Anne and her team are looking forward to spreading the Barking Mad message.

“It doesn’t matter if you are a couple, a family, or you live alone,” says Anne, “as long as you love dogs, and have the time to look after one, I can match you with a dog who’s looking for a temporary holiday home.”

Anne has run the branch for several years, and in that time has delivered quality holiday care to dogs as small as Yorkshire Terriers and as large as Saint Bernards, as active as Border Collies and as laidback as Basset Hounds.

“They all have their own unique little personality,” says Anne, “so I can always find a dog that will suit your personality.” Anne and her team pick the dogs up from their homes, deliver them to the hosts’ houses and provide round the clock back up throughout their stay.

If you fancy going along to find out more, there’s a cup of tea or coffee and a piece of cake for all interested in having a chat with Anne, plus free parking at the centre, which houses countless iron works of art.

Alternatively, if you can’t make the coffee afternoon, you can contact Anne by phone or online.

“The coffee afternoon is all about sharing the joy,” Anne says, “I know how important having a dog in your life can be, and so do my colleagues. We all love dogs – in fact you could say we’re Barking Mad!”