Monday, 14 November 2016

From Summer Hot dog to Winter Frankfurter

In this post, we're handing over to our friends at Kyrenia Animal Rescue for a heartwarming tale of hounds and homes …

It is always nice when we help to relocate pets – but even nicer when the pet was homed from our Rescue Centre.

Tinky had come into KAR after having being found just lying in the rain in a ditch – seemingly having given up trying to find somewhere warm and dry to rest. She was such a sad, sorry, little, wet and cold dog.

Tinky had only been with KAR a few months, when she caught the eyes of Sylvie and Heinz, from Germany. They already had a KAR rescue dog, Arap, who they homed in 2006, and wanted another to share their home with. Everyone was delighted when, after a few false hopes and starts, and, sadly, them not being able to have their original chosen dog, they were drawn like magnets to Tinky as soon as they saw her. 

Throughout the long, hot summer, with temperatures in the high 30s, Tinky was told “not long now.” When she was lying at the back of her kennel with her friends trying to keep cool in the shade, the message was “soon be time.” When she was having a bath, she was reminded “this feels like the rain that you need to get used to." For Tinky, it was a very long, humid summer – she was one of the many Hot Dogs at KAR.

At last, as the summer began to draw to a close and the temperature dropped, it was Tinky's time. Time for her to travel. Time for her to go to Germany. 

It was decided that Tinky would travel as an “accompanied pet” with Turkish Airlines, as opposed to travelling as a cargo booking. For some pets/owners this can be a cheaper alternative to cargo bookings, but it is not possible for pets flying into the UK.

Her flight was booked, all of the paperwork was finished, and Tinky set off. Owners often worry about how their pets will be handled during their loading, flight, and offloading, so it's nice to see from these photos the careful handling of Tinky by Ercan ground team. 
KAR Pet Travel has worked hard with everyone at Ercan who deals with their travelling pets, and these photos show that the hard work has paid off – Tinky was carefully carried onto the aircraft and strapped into her special area of the hold. 

Ground staff, Captain, and cabin crew liaised about Tinky, and the necessary reassurances for her travel were given. Tinky was off – she had a short transit, and a change of planes at Istanbul, and then continued on her journey to Germany.  

After completing all of the entry processes and checks on entry to Germany, it was time … time for Tinky to be taken out of her travel box and be with Sylvie. There were tears all around, but they were happy tears. Tinky was delighted to be snuggled up in Sylvie’s arms – after all, no one had told her that this new place was going to be so cold!

She had a comfort break and walk outside – and even had time for a quick stop at McDonalds, before setting off for an hour's journey to her new house – all of the time being told “This is it Tinky – this is Germany – this is now Home.” 

This is her new house, and her new friend, Arap.

She will even have a lake of her own to cool down in – won’t her KAR Hot Dog friends be envious!

Tinky won’t be a Summer Hot Dog again: she's now a Winter Frankfurter through and through!

Make sure you keep up with all the latest news from KAR via facebook, and its website.

Friday, 11 November 2016

Buffalo Bats

Regular readers of our blog will know how we like to spread the word about companies which do that little bit extra for our animal chums, and we've found yet another great example that we'd like to share.

Do you remember our Subaru Loves Pets blog post? Well, Subaru isn't the only auto giant to appreciate the importance of looking after wildlife. Let's head on over to Buffalo, West Virginia, to find out more …

Toyota Makes Homes for Flying Mammals … Just in time for Halloween!

BUFFALO, W. Va, Oct. 31, 2016 – OK, say you’re a bat and you’re in the vicinity of Toyota’s powertrain plant in Buffalo, West Virginia.  It’s almost Halloween and, contrary to popular folklore, you are NOT getting psyched to go all “vampire” on everybody.  NO!  You’re actually hunting for a place to hang out (no bat-pun intended).

For the Bats of Buffalo, Toyota has a treat this Halloween season:  Bat boxes!  Little wooden bungalows where these mosquito-eating machines can snuggle in for a spell and hopefully take up residence during the warmer months to help control the insect population.

“The bat houses are just one part of our biodiversity plan here at the West Virginia plant” says Marc Crouse, specialist and resident Batman. “Visitors to our one-mile green loop can stroll through to see the bat boxes and appreciate other aspects of biodiversity.”

Those other aspects include native plants and a pit stop for Monarch butterflies during their annual migration.  “I like to tell people that being a mobility company means more than building cars, trucks and engines and transmissions.  We also want to contribute to the mobility of the critters who share our West Virginia home.”

In addition to this being a great place for a bat to hang out, Toyota’s bat box project is nominated for a Wildlife Habitat Council Award. This year’s winners will be announced at the council’s annual meeting in Baltimore later this week.

Well done Toyota: we (and the Bats of Buffalo) thank you for your great efforts … keep up the good work!

Thursday, 10 November 2016

No! to animal testing … yes! to great hair

Taking a strong ethical stance is something we're used to at Hubble & Hattie HQ, and when we hear of other companies doing the same, we like to spread the word …

In this post, we're highlighting the work of one of the high street's biggest brands. Many of you will be familiar with Paul Mitchell: it's been making hair products since 1980, and is a mainstay in some of the largest creative hair salons worldwide, as well as thousands of smaller, independent salons.

The company's products are known for their effectiveness, and for being free from harmful additives such as parabens. But, something many of you may not know, is that all of its products are also cruelty-free. In fact, they have ALWAYS been cruelty-free. From styling products and hair care systems, to cutting edge styling tools and colourings, Paul Mitchell has never tested on animals … and it never will.

As the first professional beauty company to stand up against animal testing (shame on you, other brands!), Paul Mitchell is putting its money where its mouth is by donating the proceeds from the sale of all of its retail bags to Cruelty Free International, creator of the Leaping Bunny logo, the only recognised symbol guaranteeing that no animal tests were done in the development of a certified product. Paul Mitchell estimates this year's donations will exceed £15,000.

Of course, it's all very well us having beautiful, luxurious, cruelty-free hair, but what about our pets? Not content with making pampering potions solely for us humans, Paul Mitchell has applied its ethical stance and hair care expertise to a range of pet products: JP Pet®. Dry, flakey pooch? Try the Tea Tree range. Irritated, itchy cats? Calming Moisturizing Shampoo is just the ticket.

As well as a great range of pet shampoos and conditioners, suitable for cats and dogs, the JP Pet range includes Body & Paw Pet Wipes (ideal for keeping the outside off the carpet), Tooth & Gum Wipes (perfect for those pet selfies), and even Ear & Eye Wipes … with the party season about to start, there's now no excuse for you and your pet to be anything less than red-carpet-ready!

Head over to the John Paul Pet website to see the entire range, as well as pickup some excellent doggy grooming tips and pet-related news. It's so refreshing to see a big brand caring for our animal buddies. Paul Mitchell and JP Pet can be found on social media … checkout all the #JPPETFAN pics!







A History of Britain in 100 Dogs

Although usually completely involved with our own fabulous forthcoming publications, an excellent new title from History Press has caught my attention … 

A History of Britain in 100 Dogs is a colourful and comprehensive (256 pages) celebration of the nation’s favourite four-legged companion, which details how dogs have been by our side as our friends, companions  and helpers throughout history. In everything from art and religion, to war and royalty, dogs have played a part – and one that has often been vital.

It all makes for fascinating reading, though it saddened me greatly to read about some of the less commendable ways that our faithful companions have been used, such as in bear baiting and dog fighting: both dreadful activities that cannot ever be condoned. 

All in all, a great publication that serves to remind just how much we are indebted to our four-legged friends.


You can read more about the book here, see a 'bite' from the book at YouTube or download the Press Release, here.

Wednesday, 9 November 2016

A star in the making?

Kyrenia Animal Rescue is an organisation very close to Hubble & Hattie's heart. From its headquarters, high in the Besparmak Mountains of Northern Cyprus, it's been undertaking sterling work, helping strays and providing refuge to over 200 dogs and cats. Here, we take a look at one of KAR's residents, who one day could be the next big screen star … 

All owners think their pets are the best, and the same is true of KAR staff and volunteers, and their 'best' 400-plus cats and dogs. However, one of the centre's dogs has recently attracted a movie mogul's attention. The dog in the spotlight is Taggy, and she came into KAR's rescue centre as a puppy in 2012, and has remained there ever since.

Kim Betts, from KAR Pet Travel, saw an appeal from Janine Teerling, a film producer from South Cyprus, asking for a doggy double for a Dutch 'actor.' Animals are banned from travelling between the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) and the Republic of Cyprus (RoC) in the south, and with a considerable part of the film's plot taking place in the RoC, a doggy double residing in TRNC was the way to go.

Discussing the requirements with Janine, and liaising with the Centre Supervisor, Elaine, it was felt that Taggy could be the perfect pooch. Photos of the Dutch star and Taggy were exchanged, and Janine, and the Director/Writer, Marios Piperdes, agreed that Taggy should be auditioned at KAR's Karakum Office, with Janine travelling over from RoC to meet Taggy.

There were some concerns about how Taggy would respond outside of her 'home' environment, and whether she would remain calm and well behaved for the audition … after all, she had only ever been to the vet, and out in the mountains with walkers – it was all a big, new experience for her.

When Taggy arrived at the office, she was remarkably calm and quiet, but very interested in everything around her. She walked in beautifully on her lead, and then lay down with a bemused look at all the attention she was receiving.

Janine arrived, and the audition began. Most remarkable of all, was that Taggy appeared to listen to everything that was said: her eyes followed whoever was talking about her … and, like a true Hollywood star, she put on her most beautiful expressions for Janine! She behaved impeccably, and Janine agreed that, with a bit of makeup, her colouring and coat – and, of course, her demeanour and expressions – Taggy would make the ideal double for the Dutch doggy star.

Taggy was delighted, standing to attention at the promise of fame and fortune (well, maybe not!). Then, the tape measures came out, camera angles were discussed, and continuity considered … but, alas, Taggy was just too tall … and there was no way they could film her to appear smaller, to suit the size of the Dutch doggy. Everyone was so deflated and sad … Taggy's 15 minutes of fame were never to be.

The audition ended, and a very sad Janine, Kim, Margaret, and Taggy, all said their goodbyes with the promise of keeping in touch – just in case another potential star was found before filming commenced. Taggy enjoyed her outing, and returned home to the centre, still a star, and 'simply the best' in our eyes … and with a few tales to tell her pals about her time on the casting couch!

The film – Smuggling Hendrix – is a black comedy looking at various aspects of the divide between North and South Cyprus from the perspective of an ordinary person, and has already won an award for its script. A release date has yet to be set, but we'll let you know more as soon as we know. 

Catch up with all the latest happenings at KAR on its website, and on Facebook.