Yes I’m a dog lover, always have been, as you can see from the photos. That said, I am very fond of all animals and would help any animal in distress, but my real love is dogs.

Over several years, mainly because of social media, I’ve noticed a steady increase in dogs being rehomed because a baby has arrived. The families feel they cannot give their dogs the time and love they need. Some are worried their dog might become jealous and yes, I can understand that with that fear and the desire to protect their newborn baby, they may believe the answer would be to rehome their dog.

The majority are good loving dogs and to send that dog, THAT DOG, that thinks you are mummy and daddy and the new baby their sibling, must break their little hearts. I had dogs before children, collies in fact. Some people say that’s not a good breed to have around children but I can say hand on heart we never had a single problem. As far as I was concerned my family just got bigger when I had my children.imageWhen my daughter had her daughter there was never any problem with Bella and Bentley either, they just grew together. He was about two years old when Bella was born; in his eyes he had been baby and now his mummy and daddy were cuddling another baby! Even now, at the age of five, he is still cuddled like a baby, but the first few days were difficult for him, as you’ll read in the first book of Bella and Bentley, but that did change. As far as my daughter is concerned she now has two babies!

My personal feelings are your dog is your family and if he or she is included from the beginning when baby arrives, and you include, make a fuss and love them, your dog and child will grow up together to be the best of friends!

If I am fortunate and my Bella and Bentley series and any future books are successful, my intention is to open my own dog sanctuary here on the Isle of Wight where I will offer a home from home, home for life, to any dog so that they can belong to one big family. This sanctuary will be set up to be passed down through my family in the hope it will always be there to offer that forever home to those that are not fortunate to have one! It will always be open and with a little luck, will never have reason to close.

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