Ben was a typical example of an older dog that was slowing down and losing his "spark". It is wonderful for us to see dogs like Ben enjoy themselves in the pool, and to see the improvement in their general quality of life.
Unfortunatly time caught up with our friend Ben in late 2006, but his "barmy" mate Bella and her new friend Bess are now regulars at the Cibyn pool (below).
Extract from Nantlle Vale Dog Training Club Newsletter Spring 2005
Conversation heard in the dog bed about 11 pm after trips to the Canine Hydrotherapy unit at Abergele
Bella Ben, are you awake?
Ben (grumpily) I wasn't but I am NOW
Bella did you enjoy today?
Ben OH YES what a surprise, thought we were going for a walk but swimming
indoors in our own heated pool; wow, woof, it was great. Even better because
Ann came with us. I don't know why Mum won't let us call her Beanie,just cos
we have a naughty Shetland called Beanie, Don't know why mum likes HIM. I don't,
he chases me out of our field.
Bella And me. I really liked Pauline & Tony. They had thought of everything
and are so thoughtful of our doggy care.You didn't seem to enjoy the shower before
and after our swim. I liked the ramp up the slope along the top then down,down
into the blue warm water. I loved the drier at the end. How it tickled What a
wimp you are not liking the drier either.
Ben I Know but I loved being rubbed all over with those warm towels by Ann.
Don't tell Mum.
Bella Mum looked really funny in those waterproofs, but Tony said she would
get wet if she did not use them,good job she took some notice of him, always
ignores what I say- I had great fun launching myself in the water.
Ben It felt like a tidal wave and a lot of water went up my nose. You
should behave and use the ramp like me.
Bella I'm getting tired -must get my beauty sleep
Ben YOU NEED IT, hope we can go again
(two weeks later)
Ben Are you awake, Bella?
Ben Do you know where I went today?
Bella Yes, don't want to talk about it
Ben I'm sorry Mum and Ann didn't take you but you still had a bad neck.
Bella (wistfully) Was it as much fun as before?
Ben Better than ever (without YOU there!) I do like Pauline and Tony,
they take such care of us dogs.I had a biscuit & Mum & Ann had a cuppa. The
swimming felt so relaxing and it made my arthritic legs feel as good as new
and Pauline massaged me when she was drying me. It was doggy heaven.
(Two more weeks later)
Ben Are you awake Bella?
Bella Oh yes Didn't we have a great time at hydrotherapy? I love swimming
with you in that lovely warm water.
Ben Wish I could say the same about you - you do make a lot of splash & waves
Bella Don't be such a spoil sport. Tony & Pauline don't mind
Ben Mmmm - but Mum was soaked all under her waterproofs. Why don't you use
the ramp. They have even got a hoist to lift old, very arthriticky dogs into the
pool. Did you see ME in the hot spa? The bubbles felt lovely. I enjoyed the swim
more but the bubbles are very good for me.
Bella That explains why you were running round the garden like a puppy after.
I thought you were on something! You were supposed to be tired.
Ben I know, but I felt SO good and all my aches and pains had gone.
Bella I am looking forward to going again. I think I heard Mum say we could go
fortnightly. I can't wait.
Ben Nor me. It's so easy to find, just off the A55 at Abergele
(Junction 23a and then drive through Quiksave carpark,
easy to park outside the pool.
Bella Good night Ben, please don't snore. I want a good sleep.
Ben Good night Bella
Ben & Bella Good night, love you & Mum. (NOT Beanie), & Ann
PS from Cadi, Quillie & Deryn We liked it too, Quillie & Deryn
(the superneurotic collies) added - don't worry if you're a bit scared - they don't
call you wimp & they let you take your own time to get a paw in the water
till you realise its not so bad after all.
PPS You should see Cadi, she swims like a paddle steamer.
If you feel like trying it give Pauline or Tony a ring. 01492549507.
There is a poster on the notice board at dog club. First swim is free.
For more information about Nantlle Vale Dog Training Club,
call Veronica on 01248 852307.
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