A disappointing day. :-(

In the early days of having MS I found people to be kind, caring, and on the whole understanding. If I had any complaint it would be that some people appeared to pity me? I could live with that. The past 5 or 6 years has seen a large change in how I am treated by some people. 6 years ago,for the first time since 1994 (when I was diagnosed with MS) people started yelling insults at me! It was rare but would happen a couple of times a year, in the past year it has happened a lot. One word that is almost always included in the insult is “scrounger” this attitude is a result of the current governments narrative to turn working people against people on welfare, I am not on welfare although I get “personal Independence payment” to assist with the extra cost of having a disability. Despite the new negative attitude of many to people with disabilities I try to remain optimistic, comfortable in the knowledge that most people are decent and it is just a few knuckle draggers that hold these unpleasant views. Today I was totally rocked by an incident to the extent that if I can’t convince myself it was random I fear I may become a hermit. I was coming along my favourite path around a lake that I take Hamish on every day, as I slowed to get around a gate I felt a large rock hit the back of my head! Thrown by someone so cowardly they had to conceal themselves in a wooded area to attack a passing cripple. When I was a young man I didn’t take to being messed with, I have never been a thug or a fighter but I would look after myself if anyone caused trouble, unfortunately I am no longer able to look after myself so I have to feel confident in order to function. I will try to convince myself that this was random and not targeted because I am vulnerable, I already had some concerns about going out because of having Epilepsy, I don’t need any more worries. No serious damage done apart from a good sized egg and a small cut on the back of my head and a small break in my heart. 😦

Update: I have reported the incident to the police just in case this person targets others. The police said if I get any people hurling insults or rocks I should call them, further incidents would be investigated as a “hate crime”

One of the current campaigns that I am supporting is against the oppression of the Palestinian people in the occupied territories, my little problems are as nothing to the suffering endured by them.  If only I had the power to make the world a more peaceful and loving place.



How about promoting a Love Underdog to cheer myself up a bit. 🙂

Yoda is ten years old and his eyesight is now starting to fail. I have fostered many old dogs and several blind ones and they have all gone on to make fabulous pets.



This is rather an odd looking underdog who is also mature and very deserving of a second chance at a home. IT’S A CAT??

Smokey is about 12 years old and needing a home as his owner has gone in to a care home.


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2 Dogs remaining.

Our recent house guest has left us. Pepper was a delight to have staying with us, his person is out of hospital so he has returned home. We will be getting day long visits once a week for a while as his person has further treatment.



There hasn’t been much happening recently hence the lack of postings. I had my 6 monthly MS clinic appointment yesterday. Due to the amount of falls I still have the nurse advised using my wheelchair a bit more, she says she never likes to discourage people from walking but safety should come first. We left it that I would use wheels whenever I am feeling unsteady and will confine walking to around the house and very short walks like going to the car. Since the nerves in my lower legs and feet gave up I am unable to feel where the floor is so I have to stick to flat hard surfaces, The slightest unevenness in the ground sends me sprawling. Summer is almost finished with only one more week of warm weather forecast so a lot of my symptoms will hopefully settle down?

Julia finally got an English driving license. She got her license in America 27 years ago but never got one here when we returned, she was always worried that she had too many bad habits and couldn’t unlearn them. She has been classed as a learner driver here so had restrictions on where she could go and always had to have someone else with her. With very few professional lessons she took her test and passed easily, now I no longer have to go with her shopping. 🙂 You can teach an old dog new tricks. ( notice I didn’t use the gender specific form of dog) 😀




Denali is a stunningly beautiful 2 year old girl who does get noticed everywhere she goes with her thick silver fur and her sickle tail. She really needs to be met in person to be truly appreciated. She is an intelligent dog with a wonderful nature. She has a real fun side to her and you just cannot help but fall in love with her, she has such an endearing way about her. She would suit a family that enjoys lots of walks or any other outdoor activity as she has great stamina.



For more details or to see other Love Underdogs visit the Love Underdogs our dogs page.

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Not quite a foster dog…

…Shall we call him a guest?

Pepper has come to stay for a while as his human has had to go into hospital at short notice. We have known Pepper since he arrived at Wiccaweys from Ireland about 5 years ago, he was adopted by a near neighbour so we see him all the time.


Pepper is extremely well behaved and has been trained to a high standard so he is very easy to look after. He gets on with Indy and Hamish but like Indy he will growl at Hamish if his space is invaded. (poor Hamish, he is only trying to be one of the lads)

Like our boys, Pepper sits at all kerbs although Indy is now excused that as he has sore hips.


Julia does the mass walk in the mornings and she walks Indy and Pepper in the afternoon while I take Hamish for his very long run on my buggy (that’s me on the buggy, Hamish running) 😀

I don’t know if it is the Bearded Collie in Indy but he really gets on with Pepper? Indy looks all Border Collie but his dad was a Beardie and like Pepper he looked like Chewbacca!! 😀

Pepper as Chewbacca.




The Collie boys are not the only photogenic ones so I took a few pictures of Hamish today as well.

There is not much to report other than the pooches. My health is the same, we are still searching for our ideal motorhome/RV and the summer weather is still lovely enough for me to enjoy sitting in the garden. Not too much to grumble about. 🙂


Good news from Love Underdogs.

My favourite oldies Angelika and Tommy have been reserved and Basil has been adopted and the gorgeous Trinity who I featured on the last blog is also reserved. It has been a very good few weeks for adoptions for some of the longer term woofers but there are still more lovely dogs needing a home.


Florence is 8 years old and although shy at first is very affectionate, she would like to be an only dog in a quiet home.


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Getting on with Mr Epilepsy.

I am not yet out of the Epilepsy hole but I am getting there. I have had a kind offer from a friend to go out for coffee in a safe environment and I have had a couple of visits from friends put together with Julia taking me out will help to rid me of the stupid anxiety. It a great relief that Julia is doing the driving now, I think being dependant on public transport would stress me to death. I still feel anxious in the hours before I know that I have to go out but after just a short time out it passes. 🙂

I haven’t had any more seizures in the past couple of weeks but i am still very sensitive to certain light and noise conditions, I find fluorescent light unbearable and coupled with the kind of humming sound of lots of people in a supermarket makes shopping a no no at the moment (what a shame) 😀

Today I managed to take Hamish for a long run out on the edge of town with my buggy, we are unable to use our beautiful park because it has been taken over by Irish travellers who had just been removed from another park in town!! I have nothing against travellers, the last ones who stayed were no bother at all but this group have been racing around the park in cars and being quite intimidating to dog walkers. 😦

I had been hoping to get an “oldie” foster dog but the one who seemed to fit my current state of health needs to be kept with his friend and I don’t think I could manage 2 at a time. I will read through all of the dog descriptions on Love Underdogs and see if there is someone else who is wanting home comforts without long runs? I do miss doing something worthwhile like fostering.

The previous rescue centre I volunteered at had a spell of neglecting their dogs so I stopped going, by some accounts things had improved although I have no personal knowledge of current conditions? Wiccaweys are now leaving Wellingborough and moving to Lincolnshire. All I hope is that the local RSPCA is more diligent than the one here and that they manage to keep Wiccaweys honest. Previous conditions can be seen on the Facebook group “Wiccaweys uncovered”



I wish this gorgeous lady suited my current condition as I have dreamed of being able to help her on her way to happiness.

5 year old Trinity is a stunning girl, with a most unusual look. She is sure to turn heads! She arrived at the shelter in Romania as a puppy and we hope that she will finally find a home in the UK.

Trinity 1


Trinity 2


More details of Trinity can be found here.




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The little thing called Epilepsy.

I thought that the shock and fear I felt when diagnosed with Epilepsy would be as bad as it gets, it isn’t! Since the seizure I had 3 weeks or so ago I appear to be frozen with a kind of fear. I only feel safe at home, I don’t want to go anywhere alone and even going out with others makes me a little anxious? I have pinpointed the reason for being anxious taking the dogs out, that is I worry someone will harm Hamish in order to help me as he is nervous but protective of me and will growl and bark. Going far from home I also worry that I could be taken advantage of during a seizure as I have heard of people filming seizures and putting them on Youtube for “a laugh” but I mostly worry about being robbed during a seizure as I have heard of this happening. The one thing I can’t understand is why I should be anxious going out with family or friends? I can only think I am worried that I might be an embarrassment to them or maybe myself? I can’t wait for things to return to normal as it did after being diagnosed. I have been searching for support groups for people with Epilepsy but there isn’t one in my area? I can’t go to the next county as I can never be sure when I am going to have to stop driving again as I have at the moment. It would be really helpful to meet others in the same position and learn from their experiences.

MS isn’t too bad, I am getting used to my carbon fibre leg braces which has reduced the number of falls that I have. I can still only wear them for about an hour at a time until my muscles and joints adapt to being held in a different position. Another big thank you to the NHS because I certainly couldn’t have afforded them myself, the off the shelf version cost £500 for each leg and mine are custom made so I dread to think what they cost?! I have finished with the physiotherapist after 3 months so I now have a programme of exercises to help with my core strength and balance, this should also help to reduce falls.

My dogs are keeping me sane although I am testing their sanity a bit, I have been watching the European championship football (soccer for all you non English people) and every time I get excited by a good goal or tackle the boys run around yapping. Indy learned to do this years ago when we still had Luca during the world cup and he has quickly taught Hamish to join in. 🙂 The only problem is that when Hamish joins in Indy tells him off with a special Collie smile and a growl which make Hamish stop, Indy then yaps again so Hamish joins in and round and round it goes until I wet myself laughing.



The handsome Tommy is hoping to find a loving home for his later years. He is estimated to be 12 years old, perhaps a little more.

He is a very sweet boy, who likes cuddles and relaxing in the sunshine. He is an older gentleman so is looking for a relaxed home and will not need a very active lifestyle. Gentle walks and plenty of love will do just fine for him.

Tommy was rescued together with Aslan and Angelika 2 years ago. They were all in dire straight and starving at the edge of a forest. Tommy is a quiet and gentle boy and we hope a wonderful family will come forward to give him some home comfort.

As Tommy is a little bit older, Love Underdogs will offer his forever family an option to have vet fee support, as it will be difficult to get him insured. Details of this offer will be explained to interested families.





To adopt Tommy or any of the other beauties at Love Underdogs visit the website for details.

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Not the best week but I’ve had worse.

I’m afraid the dreaded “eppy” has returned! On Monday I spent a few hours doing some gentle gardening (sitting on the ground potting some seedlings) after I got up I remember saying something to Julia and then the lights went out. Julia said it was the best seizure that she has seen, I was standing with a sharp knife in my hand in between the corner of a heavy wooden planter and a stack of terracotta pots. I went down like an expertly felled tree, right between the hazards and landed with the knife clutched safely away from my body. 🙂 The seizure didn’t last long enough to cause any concern but it took quite a while before I knew what was going on and several days before the foggy head subsided. The difference I have noticed since this seizure is that I have a constant feeling of nervousness? and more than a little anxiety and worry. I think this is probably because I had become accustomed to not having seizures for a couple of years and I became convinced it was under control. I have 2 theories regarding the seizure; 1 is that a long period of MS fatigue brought it on (fatigue can trigger seizures in people with Epilepsy) and 2 is that the pre seizure things I have had lately contributed to the MS fatigue? as usual the healthcare professionals reply was that it could be a bit of both or either??? 😀 Our NHS is great but trying to get a decisive opinion out of a doctor who hasn’t spent months testing is like getting blood out of a stone. 😀

In other news…

I spent last weekend printing pictures that I have taken over the years as we have a printer ink contract and I wasn’t making the best use of it. I came across a photo that I took in Plockton, a village  in the western highlands of Scotland. I loved the image as I looked at it which is why I took the photo but I never appreciated how beautiful it was until I printed it, it wont look as good on here as the kelp in the foreground doesn’t show up as vibrant yellow but here it is.


Boat in the bay at Plockton


I am going to continue to take it easy for a while as I don’t want to risk having a prolonged period of seizures, rest is a good thing. I feel terribly guilty seeing Julia flitting around doing all of the chores on her own while I sit doing nothing, I will make it up to her some how.



Denali is a 2 year old girl who would be ideal for an active outdoor type of family.



Denali and other gorgeous pooches can by found at Love Underdogs via their website.

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It feels a bit like summer.

Don’t get me wrong I love summer but my MS doesn’t. I like nothing more than being outside with my gorgeous pooches but when it is as warm as today it drains me.

2 days ago I tried to get a picture of our cherry tree in blossom before it all blew away, I couldn’t see the tree on my screen because the sun was at the wrong angle! When I came in and looked at the picture I noticed that Hamish had “photo bombed” the tree. 😀  He is a funny bloke.

Cherry tree

The MS has been plodding along recently, after several more painful falls I started physiotherapy to try to help with walking. After several weeks of physio I was referred to the orthotics department at Kettering hospital to get some leg braces! Apparently I have “foot drop” in both feet. I knew my left foot had turned inwards several years ago and that I occasionally scuff both of my feet when walking but I didn’t know it was due to nerve damage, it wont get better but the braces will help a bit. I have been measured and assessed, now I just have to wait until they have been made.

I still haven’t got a foster dog as things keep popping up to put things on hold. I haven’t been able to drive very far so I can’t get to the new kennels to get a dog, I was told someone could bring me a dog and this appeared to be a solution. Now we are waiting for my Mum to have her hip replacement, this will delay getting a dog as Julia will have to help out with my Mum for a while. 😦

Love Underdogs still need people to adopt the gorgeous pooches even though they are now withdrawing from The UK, dogs can be found here.


8 year old Madonna is a big soft lump who loves a good belly rub.





Zorro is a shy 8 month old puppy who needs a calm patient family to call his own, is that you?



Details of all of the Underdogs can be found by visiting the Love Underdogs website.

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Memories of Mack.

When I got my new laptop about a year ago I migrated all my pictures either to my new laptop or to our personal cloud, I was horrified and upset that I appear to have lost the folder of Mack pictures! Last night I happened to look at my old laptop to find some old emails and right there amongst the emails was Mack. 🙂

Mack in snow (2)

Mack was never really “my dog” as we never adopted him but had him on foster, after the RSPCA raid on Wiccaweys there never was a chance of me returning him, I would have paid the fee to adopt if I had to but never did.

When Mack arrived from Ireland he had had a hard life, he was very skinny and matted and scared of everyone and every thing. Mack wasn’t like Hamish, he didn’t back away from things that scared him, he bit them and then shouted a lot. I don’t know the reason why but Mack was soon confined to a small travel crate in the back of a van at Wiccaweys? He hated to go back in after being walked so would nip and jump up and generally be scary. One day when a group of us had walked together Mack decided he should nip and tug Julia’s clothes, so much so that he almost had her trousers off. 😀 We decided on that day that we would foster him and met no resistance from Wiccaweys as they had no time for him.

Mack a doodle 001

Mack took to our boys without any trouble but he didn’t like any of the people that came to the house. We had a few incidents when he nipped people when we were out and almost had to give up on him when he took a lump out of the leg of a local teenager, fortunately the boys mother realised it was her sons fault for riding his bike at Mack.

As time went on Mack learned to trust us and knew we would protect him so his behaviour improved gradually but noticeably, he was a joy to have. Mack loved going on the road in our motorhome/RV he especially liked going to our friends farm in Scotland where he could mix with the 9 farm dogs, it helped that our friend is very good with dogs and built up Mack’s confidence.

Copy of Mack harness 005

The last year of Mack’s life he was just like a “normal dog” He met people without nipping, he played happily with dogs and liked nothing more than snuggling up with Luca and Indy and if I was lucky me. All this makes his death even more cruel, just as he was enjoying the life he deserved it was taken from him by a cruel disease. One day Mack was healthy and happy and then he went off his food, 2 weeks later he was dead! Mack died of the visceral form of Hemangiosarcoma. The disease apparently would have started in his spleen and quickly spread via his blood vessels to his liver and heart. 😦

We only had Mack for 3 years (in fact it was exactly 3 years to the day) but he was a big part of us, we learned so much from him. No matter what horrors he had in Ireland and the neglect when he first came to England with a little love and patience he learned to trust. I still miss him.

Some of the “lost picture”


I will have to do another post about Luca soon, he died during the 3 years that we had Mack, they were great friends and Mack helped Indy get over Luca dying. We have been very lucky with the dogs that have crossed our path. We will soon be bringing one of the Love Underdogs oldies home on foster so another chapter will be written.

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A very sad day.

After some issues arose between the founders of Love Underdogs and Glebe Farm Kennels it was decided that Love Underdogs would relocate. That is sad but it got worse. On one of the first runs by the company hired to transport the dogs the driver handled one of the very nervous dogs less than perfectly, instead of the kennel staff helping him as they are familiar with the dog they chose to video it and put it on the internet!! Very quickly the trolls took over and some very ill informed and hateful comments were made, as a result of this the founders and trustees have decided to stop working in the UK.

A little perspective needed here. Karine and Anna Hauser have run a campaign that has resulted in many thousands of dogs in Romania being neutered, they have worked with international rescue organizations to place dogs abroad and they have rehomed over 700 dogs in the UK. Oh, they also run a bear rescue charity that funds sanctuaries and rescues bears from all over the world. And the trolls? They have written slanderous, hateful messages on the internet. People power at its worst.

Love Underdogs will continue to work to rehome the dogs they have remaining in the UK and provide life long support to dogs who have been adopted. I am extremely saddened by the outcome of this short but very nasty episode but that is as nothing compared to what many dogs will now go through without Love Underdogs.


This is Grayson, the nervous dog who was mishandled.


Any caring lover of dogs can find their new best friend by visiting Love Underdogs site here


I have just had an update about Grayson, he has settled at the new kennels and is doing well.

Grayson new

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It’s all about MS.

Life has been all about MS lately. I have been having a harder time for a couple of years but this past year has been really tough. Falling has become such a regular thing I now only walk with crutches around the house, all other times I use either my wheelchair or mobility scooter. The importance of looking out for my safety came into focus 2 weeks ago when parking my scooter in the garden, I got off and as I reached for the door handle fell head first into the wall before hitting the floor! I had very little skin on my forehead with the added bonus of a concussion, it took 4 days until I could see straight and balance enough to sit upright. 😦   I finally conceded to my MS nurse to be referred to a physiotherapist to address my falling, she said if nothing can be done to stop the falls at least we will have explored all possibilities.

Normally MS is just a “thing” living with it day to day one doesn’t really pay attention to the subtle changes until the need to do something arises. My occasion took the form of the dreaded PIP assessment. I have heard horror stories of it taking many months to go through, of uncaring employees of the DWP and terrible assessors and humiliating assessments? My experience was very different, was I just lucky? The letter arrived telling me DLA was ending and to apply for PIP, a short phone call and the forms arrived a few days later. Julia completed the forms as my brain is too foggy to do it, we got a copy of my medical records and sent it away, after a week I got an assessment date in 2 weeks time.The assessors came to the house, they were professional but cordial and completed the assessment in about 40 minutes. 3 weeks later I got the notice that I have been awarded PIP at the same level as my old DLA award. The thing that struck me was that the evidence I submitted and the answers I gave at the assessment bore little relation to the summary in my award letter? I got the feeling that it is just an exercise they have to go through to transfer people from the old benefit  to the new? I have no complaints about the decision, it is what I expected in fact the new award is slightly more money, it is just I wonder why people on a “lifetime” DLA award don’t just get transferred to PIP and save some administration time and money?  I hope that most of the people I have heard about who are very worried about their upcoming PIP applications have a positive experience like mine. The bottom line of all of that rambling is it made me list the symptoms of MS and the impact it has on my daily life, I wasn’t aware of how much things have changed in the last 22 years and how much MS not only impacts me but the rest of my family on a daily basis. Thankfully my Epilepsy is behaving itself or I might be in a right mess. 😀



Now, back to the serious business of dogs. Another wonderful assortment of gorgeous pooches have arrived at Love Underdogs from Romania. Among all of the scrummy youngsters are 4 very lovely mature woofers who are featured below.


Madonna is about 5 years old.

Madonna aged 5


Aslan is a very handsome gentleman of about 12 years.

Aslan aged 12


Angelika is a sweet older lady of about 9 years of age.

Angelika aged 9


And finally for now is Tommy who is definitely not my favourite because I wouldn’t have a favourite! 😉

Tommy is a spectacularly gorgeously furry 12 year old gentleman. 😀

Tommy aged 12

As always anyone  looking for a wonderful furry companion can get more details of the featured dogs by clicking their names, details of other pooches can be found on Love Underdogs website by clicking wherever you see the words Love Underdogs.

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