Saturday 19 April 2014

Happy Easter!

Have a great Easter from all of us at H&H HQ!

Thursday 17 April 2014

Pause for a cause – SPANA
SPANA (the Society for the Protection of Animals Abroad) is the charity for the working animals of the world, which strives to improve the lives of working animals through free veterinary care, education & training, and emergency response, particularly in the developing world.

SPANA was founded in 1923 by Kate Hosali and her daughter, Nina, after they witnessed the suffering of animals on their travels through north Africa. They planned to set up a service that offered practical help, and acknowledged the extreme poverty of animal owners, and their lack of medicines and education. Kate returned to Africa to treat as many animals as she could, while Nina set up SPANA in London.
Demand for SPANA’s free veterinary care grew rapidly and centres were established across north and west Africa. Kate devoted 21 years of her life to saving animals, before she passed away in 1944, aged 67.
Nina took on the task of rebuilding SPANA’s services after the Second World War, and extended the humane education side of SPANA’s work. She believed that, by ensuring school children understood basic principles of animal welfare, they would be less likely to treat their animals badly in the future.
Like her mother, Nina dedicated the rest of her life to SPANA. After 42 years of selfless devotion she passed away in 1987, aged 89. This dedication led to Nina being awarded an OBE in 1976.
Kate and Nina’s amazing compassion remains at the heart of SPANA's work to this day.
Across Africa and the Middle East, SPANA clinics treat hundreds of thousands of donkeys, horses, mules, camels and livestock every year.

Its education programme teaches children and owners respect and compassion for animals, and
during conflict, drought and natural disaster, its emergency programme gets help to animals and the communities who depend on them, whenever and wherever needed. At present, SPANA has permanent clinics in Ethiopia, Jordan, Mali, Mauritania, Morocco, Tunisia and Zimbabwe, as well as outreach and emergency programmes across the world, giving support and ultimately saving the lives of not just working animals, but the communities that rely on them.
In recognition of its 90th year helping animals abroad, SPANA has lauched it's Big Knit campaign, where you can get sponsored while you stitch! Download SPANA's free patterns for Duncan the donkey,  Hattie the horse and Clarence the camel to raise money and help hardworking animals in need.

 To get involved, or for more information, click here to visit the SPANA website!

Friday 11 April 2014

Get more fun for your fuel this Easter

If you're taking a trip this Easter, but are dreading the arduous task of driving on the motorway, have no fear – our great App, Motorway Walks and Breaks, could be just what you need to make the journey there and back an enjoyable part of your holiday! this app to get more fun for your fuel, see more of the countryside, take a healthy break, or enjoy a relaxing pub lunch. Anyone who drives on the motorways of England, Scotland and Wales will benefit from this guide to walks within five miles of motorway exits across the UK. All of the walks are suitable for dogs, and those with assistance dogs will find details of accessible paths and facilities for the disabled. The listed pubs – most of which are traditional inns, serving high quality food at realistic prices  – all welcome well-behaved canines.

 • Ideal for when travelling with your four-legged friend!
• All walks within 5 miles of motorway exits
• Pub/cafĂ© on each walk (or at least a picnic table)
• Many walks near kids’ activities
• Buggy and wheelchair easy access walks, ideal for assistance dog owners
• Every walk tried and tested
• Safe and legal parking places
• Driving routes from and back to the motorway described
• Each walk 30-45 minutes – healthy, natural breaks that improve driver concentration
• Redesigned for use on Apple iOS7
• Now available for the first time for Windows Phone, Android, and Kindle Fire.

The full app has 177 walks, each complete with several full-colour high resolution zoomable images, map views, and retails at £1.99 (equivalent price in other currencies).

Also available is a FREE lite version of the full app with 48 sample walks and the same features as the full app. Click here to check it out, or get the full version from Veloce Digital now!

Monday 7 April 2014

Pause for a cause – Kyrenia Animal Rescue

We're looking at a charity very close to our hearts in this post – the very rescue centre where Immie, the H&H hound, came from!

The Kyrenia Animal Rescue (KAR), high in the Besparmak Mountains in Northern Cyprus, provides refuge for over 200 dogs and cats. A mixture of full-time staff and volunteers work constantly to maintain and improve KAR’s facilities, to the benefit of the animals in their care.
KAR was founded in 1997 by a small group of people who were saddened by the number of stray
animals they saw, and the conditions they were living in. A year later, the group was affiliated to the RSPCA in the UK. A year after that, the Forestry Department of Northern Cyprus donated a tract of land in the mountains where a kennel block, exercise compounds and caretaker’s accommodation were built, with the rescue centre opening in May. Since that time, KAR has initiated many incredible projects, all of benefit to the local community, their animals, and for animals without homes. These projects include a neutering programme; educational visits to schools; re-homing programmes; veterinary care; pet passports, and campaigns for changes in the law. KAR aims to change attitudes towards the welfare and care of animals in the community, and the centre has certainly taken leaps and bounds in the right direction.
One of KAR’s main successes is its neutering programme. This sees stray dogs and cats rounded up,
neutered, inoculated, treated for worms and fleas, and then released after they are fully recovered. Released dogs are also given a numbered ear tag to keep track of them.

A great number of the animals KAR rescues and cares for are able to be re-homed. Unfortunately, in a country as small as Cyprus, there aren’t many good homes available, so KAR also reaches out to people looking to adopt a rescue animal from other countries! Homes have been sought and found in Germany, France, and, as in Immie’s case, the UK. This process is much easier now than it would have been when Veloce’s Jude and Rod brought Immie home, following changes in legislation in 2012, so there’s never been a better time to adopt one of these lovely animals!

KAR continues to make improvements in the way it cares for its animals on-site. In November 2012, the charity moved into new office premises – with space in a large, open basement that looked an ideal place to set up its own veterinary clinic. It wasn’t long before the dream began to become a reality – funds were raised for partitions to be built, and a group of volunteers was formed to continue to raise funds, source equipment, and promote the clinic in local communities.

Donations of money, equipment, supplies and support were received, and gradually the clinic is taking shape. KAR’s plan is to employ a qualified vet who can not only neuter and treat the animals, but who could also mentor veterinarian students to be able to gain vital operational skills.
If you’re interested in giving one of KAR’s many gorgeous furry friends a forever home, details of the costs involved and the steps to take can be had by contacting KAR’s Pet Travel Department, or if you’d like to help KAR continue in its efforts to give the animals of Northern Cyprus a better life, then click here to find out how you can help!

Thursday 3 April 2014

Meet the author – Peggy Frezon

Meet Peggy Frezon, author of H&H’s Dieting with my dog.

A typical day for Peggy starts with a brisk morning walk with her husband, Mike, and dogs: Spaniel-mix Kelly, and Golden Retriever Ike. Kelly charges ahead at the end of the leash, while Ike strolls along, hoping for a whiff of squirrel or cat. After the walk, Peggy settles in at her great-great uncle’s oak rolltop desk, and taps away at her laptop for the rest of the day. The only breaks are when Ike nudges her knee and drops his tennis ball in her lap, or when Kelly (less subtle) jumps up and slaps her paw on the keyboard ... “Time for another walk!”

Peggy is grateful that she’s able to work from home and spend her days with the dogs, while writing about dogs. She’s a pet columnist, dog blogger, and author of two books about losing weight and getting fit with dogs – a memoir, Dieting with my Dog (Hubble and Hattie) and a how-to book The Dieting with my Dog Guide to Weight Loss and Maintenance (HS Brooks Press 2013). She is also the author of Heart to Heart, Hand in Paw (Guideposts Books, 2013), which is about a Vermont homesteader and the healing power of animals.
Peggy is also a full-time contributor to Guideposts; Angels on Earth; and Mysterious Ways magazines. Her stories appear regularly in Chicken Soup for the Soul books, and many other publications such as The Ultimate Dog Lover; Miracles and Animals; Animals and the Kids who Love Them, and many more.
Kelly and Ike are rescue dogs, and Peggy and Mike work with local rescue groups. Last year they adopted a 12-year-old Golden Retriever, Brooks, who had been abandoned and left to fend for himself.
He was weak and nothing but skin and bones when he came to live with them. Despite a hard life, Brooks had no behavioural issues or bad habits. He stuck by Peggy’s side, did what he was asked the first time, and was a perfect gentleman with the bossy Kelly. Sadly, Brooks died of cancer less than a year later.
“We’ve come to accept that he came to us to live out his last year in total love and comfort, and that was our role – albeit short – in his life,” says Peggy. She and Mike consider Brooks the 'gold standard' of dogs. Since then, they adopted seven-year-old Ike, who is also as sweet and gentlemanly as they come.
When she’s not writing or playing with dogs, Peggy likes to visit friends and family in her home state of Vermont, USA. She has fond memories of collecting maple syrup and making 'sugar on snow' – a treat where you boil real maple syrup and pour it over a bowl of snow, which turns the syrup into a sticky candy.
What’s next for Peggy? Well, she’s currently writing a book about the human animal bond, Greetings at the Front Door (Paraclete Press) with an expected release date of autumn 2015.
Keep up-to-date with all of Peggy's news and get in touch at her website, blog, facebook page and twitter feed, or sign up to receive her newsletter, Pawsitively Pets, here.
Dieting with my dog is available now over at the Hubble & Hattie website.

March Gallery Winner: Reggie

Reggie is the winner of our March Gallery on our Facebook page!
Thank you to everyone who submitted a photo, and for everyone who voted! We're now taking entries for April.

We want to share your furry friends! Each month in 2014 we'll be compiling an album of your beloved animals. The picture with the most likes at the end of the month, will win a fantastic Hubble & Hattie book of your choice, and feature in our monthly newsletter!

How to submit photos:
Post photos directly on to our Facebook page.
Tweet us your photos
Email your photos

Work Placement at Hubble & Hattie

Over the last fortnight we were joined by Tyler on her work placement for school. Here's what she had to say about her experience …

"When they told us at school that work experience was going to be hard and quite possibly scary, I was nervous to say the least. On the drive here on Monday morning I was petrified, worried that no one would like me, I wouldn't have anything to do and that it might put me off my career plans, taking me back to square one. But I was wrong.
I arrived to a warm hello from Kim before I was even through the door, we made a cup of tea (I think I've drunk more tea in the past two weeks than I've had in my whole life), and I was immediately put at ease. I had a tour of the whole office, was introduced to everyone, and then I was set to work.

During my time here I have been given an overview of all the aspects of publishing, from author submissions to sending off the final draft for printing. I was given the opportunity to sit in on meetings, meet some authors, use the still baffling VCR that contains every detail you would ever need to know about any book Veloce has ever published (wow …) produce my own sample chapters, and even create an interactive eBook.
I sat in on an interview with author Kevin Turner.

I now know that the publishing business is definitely not as simple as it seems, and that pieces go through check, after check, after check, by all the different people, back and forth between editor and author for weeks on end until both are happy. And surprisingly this hasn't put me off! I am even more determined to get an English degree and open my own publishing firm.
Here's my interactive eBook I made using iBooks Author.

I can honestly say that the people here are genuinely some of the nicest people I have ever met, they have welcomed me into their place of work and helped me to realise that my dream of becoming a publisher can be achieved, so thank you! Especially to Kim who has looked after me during my time at Veloce, and really did an amazing job making sure I always had something to learn and do. Another big thank you to Rod and Jude for allowing me to have this amazing opportunity. Can't I just stay here and not go back to school?"
Tyler-Nicole Graham
The lovely team at Veloce

Tuesday 1 April 2014

Competition time!

Click here to visit the Muddy Paws website, or here to enter the competition!