Monday 29 October 2018

Lily & Laura Update

It's been a little while since we last heard what Laura Hamilton and her dog, Lily, have been up to, so we're bringing you up to speed in today's blog – as well as providing a preview at what 2019 has in store for this dynamic duo!

You may recall that Laura had planned to send a copy of Lily: One in a million ... a miracle of survival to the newlywed Duke & Duchess of Sussex, as she has a list of similarities to our newest Royal. Well, back in August, Laura received a very special thank-you card in the post! 

"[It's] wonderful to know one of the H&H books is in Kensington Palace!"

Over the summer, Laura and her girls, Lily and Pilot, attended a local church fete, where Laura was in charge of two different competitions. The first one was to guess how many raisins there were in a jar of cornflakes, whilst the second competition was to guess the number of PAT sessions Lily and Pilot had completed. The answer to both was 377; astonishing to think that the girls had completed so many sessions, but hardly surprising, as they both began working as PAT dogs from the tender age of nine months old.

Lily and Pilot in their new livery bandanas

It looks like Lily is certainly getting used to being featured in the press, as her latest appearance was in the Pets As Therapy September newsletter! There was a mention of Laura's wonderful book, and Lily was even pictured next to Paul O'Grady and the lovely Lulu! It's all about the company you keep – even if it's just on screen!

"Getting mentioned in the PAT newsletter is actually quite a big deal, so I'm thrilled!"

Monday the 5th of November sees Laura giving another book talk, this time to the Inner Wheel Club of Locks Heath. Not only will she be talking about Lily's incredible life story, and her work as a Pets As Therapy dog, but the proceeds of sales of Lily: One in a million ... a miracle of survival on the night will be donated to Laura's chosen charity, Sue Ryder Care.

We may only be coming to the end of October, but Laura has already started pencilling in talks and engagements for 2019! These talks will be at other Women's Institutes local to Laura, and by which time she should be able to divulge a little more about her next literary foray ...

The Adventures of Lily and the Little Lost Doggie is a new book written and illustrated by Laura, and due for publication under our Hubble & Hattie Kids! imprint next summer. Who knows, maybe Laura could send a copy of her children's book to the Sussexes to celebrate the birth of their baby! Here's a sneak peak at the cover of what is sure to be another delightful book from Laura!

"An amazing opportunity, and great fun, that Hubble & Hattie has given me to illustrate Lily's next book."

Be sure to keep a lookout on our Facebook and Twitter pages, as well as in our Animal Magic newsletter, for more Lily & Laura updates in the future!

Friday 26 October 2018

Time for walkies!

Who doesn't love a good dog walking holiday? All that fresh air and picturesque scenery – and not forgetting that walking holidays are enjoyable year-round. Best of all, they are the perfect holidays for you and your canine companion!

With hundreds of walks to choose from when you visit the Lake District, for example, deciding which are the best for you can be tricky. And if you are taking a four-legged friend with you, this can seem even more difficult! Craig Manor Hotel has looked at the UK's most popular breeds and the type of walks they love, and has suggested the best walk for you both next time you visit the lakes.


Originating from Newfoundland, the Labrador was bred as a hunting dog and is the most popular breed in the UK, USA and Canada. Labrador Training HQ advises that Labradors need plenty of exercise, as the breed is prone to obesity, as well as hip and joint problems.

Walk – Derwentwater
Distance: 10 miles
Time: 5 Hours
Difficulty: 2/3

Starting at the National Trust Shop, this 10-mile walk follows the well-signposted path right around Derwentwater. This walk is great for Labradors as there's plenty of opportunities to walk off pent-up energy, or if your dog is a little older, consider taking a boat from one of the landings back to your starting point.

Jack Russell

The Jack Russell was a hunting dog until the Second World War, and is feisty and intelligent as a result. Jack Russells need plenty of mental stimulation and some time off-lead, as they are an excitable breed with plenty of energy.

Walk – Tarn Hows, Coniston
Distance: 1.5 miles
Time: 30-40 minutes
Difficulty: 1/3

This 1.5 mile walk takes about half an hour, which is perfect for Jack Russells, You can take in some of the best views the Lake District has to offer, with the Lansdale Pikes close by. If you want to extend your stay, consider visiting Monk Coniston Hall, making the walk 3.5 miles, with a welcome break at the hall and gardens.

Staffordshire Bull Terrier

These dogs are both quiet and trustworthy. 'Staffies' were originally bred for blood sports, but now make fantastic companions, with an off-duty placidness.

Walk – Heavy Sides Trail at Whinlatter
Distance: 1.5 miles
Time: 60-90 minutes
Difficulty: 2/3

This 1.5 mile walk through varied terrain offers plenty of opportunities to explore. There is some steep walking and uneven paths, but this will mean your dog is using his brain, as well as his four paws to explore the trail.

Border Collie

These herding dogs are extremely loyal and obedient, and can be trained to follow complex cues. Collies can display herding behaviours towards small children if not well trained. They need exercise and mental stimulation to prevent this.

Walk – Silurian Way, Grizedale
Distance: 10 miles
Time: 5 hours

This 10-mile walk offers plenty of opportunities for your Collie to burn off energy, and with a variety of terrain, he'll need to use his intelligence on the way. Offering a tour of the forest, you will experience not only the many natural beauties in the area, but also the recent sculpture installations, which add to the area's magic.


These hunting dogs (yes, really!) are known for chasing small animals and tennis balls with determination and ferocity. They need plenty of activity to keep them happy, and are prone to spinal problems, made worse by obesity, jumping, rough handling and intense exercise. Therefore, walks should be on flat terrain to avoid potential injury.

Walk – Allan Bank Woodland Walk
Distance: 2.5 miles
Time: 50 minutes
Difficulty: 2/3

This circular route will take you and your four-legged friend about forty-five to fifty minutes to complete – the perfect length of time for a Dachshund – with the fairly flat route passing along rugged paths. With accent woodland and beautiful views, you'll want to visit this walk every season.

If you are a full-fledged outdoorsy person, make sure to keep an eye open for our new book due out early next year, Wonderful walks from dog-friendly campsites throughout the UK is a unique resource that combines the joys of camping with the delights of walking with your dog.

There's information on a variety of campsites, all of which welcome dogs, with some providing special facilities for your pet.  All the campsites are located very close to footpaths and walking trails. In addition to identifying the distinctive characteristics of the area, there are detailed instructions for two walks of varying lengths from each campsite, providing the opportunity to explore the area in the immediate vicinity of the campsite, and appreciate the diverse environments to be found in Britain.

So, if you like taking along your pooch when you head off on a camping trip, this book will help you find the perfect location for a weekend jaunt, or the facilities you need to explore a region – or even tour the UK!