Waggy Tales - Borrower Helen, Scotland
Following on from owner Margaret’s Waggy Tale, we now have her lovely borrower, Helen’s story. Helen joined BorrowMyDoggy after moving to a new area, and now, has “met an amazing dog and an amazing person” - high paws! Here’s her wagulous story.
How do you get on with your match Margaret and her dog Ralphie?
I’ve met an amazing dog and an amazing person.
Ralphie is lovely. He literally hugs people, which I’ve never known any dog to do! He’s a big, loveable lump of fluff. I clicked with both him and Margaret immediately.
With Margaret and I, there is a difference in age, but I'd say I've made a new best friend. I see her two or three times a week. We have both been welcomed by each others families and friends, and are becoming like family to each other! We’ve started watching a TV series together and I often go round for dinner. I’ve just bought a house five doors down from her, which is such a happy coincidence.
Margaret moved up to the area last September, just after I did. As such, when her parents couldn’t make it for Christmas she was faced with spending the day alone as she didn’t know many people in the area. I’d known her for a few months at that point and we were already good friends. I explained the situation to my parents and they were more than happy to have her join us. Everyone got on so well, even Ralphie and my parents’ Border Collie, Ringo. She met roughly 20 members of my family in one day so it's safe to say she's had the baptism of fire.
What has been your previous experience with dogs?
Animals have always been a big part of my life. We got our first dog when I was 6 or 7 and our family always had them since. I always wanted to be a vet and worked in a local veterinary surgery when I was younger. On my gap year, I was working with animals in Namibia and I’ve done a degree in animal behaviour and welfare.
Why did you sign up to BorrowMyDoggy?
I moved to the area last September and found myself with no friends, family or dogs nearby. I missed the freedom of taking a dog for a walk on a sunny summers evening, and had seen photos uploaded by a friend of her her four footed BorrowMyDoggy friends on Facebook. She seemed to be having a great time, so I had already decided that I would sign up when I moved. For me, joining BorrowMyDoggy was partially to meet a dog and partially to meet new people too.
How did you go about finding a local match?
I looked for nearby dogs available outside of normal working hours and added their profile to my list of favourites. I was very lucky to find Margaret and Ralphie. Ralphie looked extremely handsome and was actually my favourite on the website. He sounded like the kind of dog I would love to own, so I was delighted when Margaret got in touch after I added Ralphie to my favourites. Margaret messaged me after I added Ralphie to my favourites. Although I'd happily become pals with any dog, my parents have a Border Collie and I miss him, so I was happy to find one registered so nearby on BorrowMyDoggy.
How was your 'Welcome Woof'?
Our ‘Welcome Woof’ was great. Margaret and I clicked immediately as we have a very similar sense of humour. I went round for a cup of tea and got to know them both. Our first meeting was on a Sunday. Our second meeting was on the following Tuesday, when I accompanied Margaret to Ralphie’s obedience training. We soon gave up on that, but have only looked forwards from then on.
What is your current arrangement with Margaret?
We make it up as we go along to be honest. Margaret's very laid back, so she doesn't mind if I arrive late or arrange to come round last minute. Any evening or weekend when I’ve got spare time I pop over to Margaret’s house and give Ralphie a walk and help Margaret empty her kitchen cupboards. I enjoy the flexibility that our subsequent friendship allows.
When I take Ralphie out, I always bring the ball thrower. We managed to go through the whole winter without losing the ball once in the dark, only to lose it four times in one week during daylight hours one winter passed. Normally we go for a walk round the local park or on the weekend we go to the local beach. It gives Margaret’s cats a rest from being herded, gives Ralphie new people to hug and it’s fun for everybody.
Would you recommend BorrowMyDoggy to friends?
Definitely, especially if you are moving to a new area. I found it a good way of making friends. For just £9.99 a year, it’s worked out very well for me.
Describe your BorrowMyDoggy experience in one sentence.
Great - I'm so glad I signed up, even if we do get odd looks when we tell people how we met!
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