My mate Nelson the Arson Detection Dog!

On the dog and bone!

On the dog and bone!

Herro efuryone Hawwy here,

Now as yoo all know by now I likes to have a broad range of intervoos. Well I was delighted when I was asked by de Cornwall Fire Service @Cornwallfrs to intervoo der vewy vewy speshul Arson Detection Dog Nelson @Nelson_firedog so here is de result of our intervoo on Tuesday………….

Hi Nelson fanks fur doing an Intervoo wiv me. So where is yoo fwom and how old is yoo?

Firstly thank you Harry for asking me. I’ve never been interviewed by another dog but always hoped the day would finally come!  I’m originally from the West Midlands and was being trained to become a gun dog…. However it wasn’t really for me as I didn’t like the feathers in my mouth! My birthday is on 14 May so I will soon be 5 years old (about 36 in human years).

Yoo is a twained Arson Detection Dog. What inspired yoo to choose dis career?

Well, my career kind of chose me I guess!  I was spotted by Clive Gregory (who was the first fire investigation dog handler in the UK), as he thought I’d make a great fire investigator.  It just so happened at that time, Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service were looking for a replacement; Charlie (Cornwall’s fire investigation dog) was due to retire.  

 I’ve always loved to be help people, be rewarded and please my handler, so when I was offered the fire investigation job in Cornwall I couldn’t wait to take them up on their offer! Who could refuse a new home in the beautiful county of Cornwall with an endless supply of tennis balls and beaches? 

What does an Arson Detection dog do and how many of dem are der in de UK?

 The Fire and Rescue Service will call us and our handlers out when a fire occurs and arson is suspected.  We’ll only search the fire scene once the fire is out and the scene is cold. My safety and the rest of the teams is always a top priority when we are doing our investigations.  

If I track the vapour given off by an ignitable liquid (e.g. petrol, paraffin, diesel etc, I will indicate the location of the substance to Mark (my handler).  I do this by putting my nose towards the strongest scent of accelerant and I’ll freeze.  I’ll then go from a standing to a down position to indicate my find. When I have a successful ‘find’ I get rewarded with my favourite tennis ball, which makes me wag my tail like mad!

 There are approximately 15 fire investigation dogs working in the UK; however this does vary at times due to retirements; like Cornwall’s Charlie and of course Nelson Senior (we howled out loud (HOL) when we realised we both had the same name).  In the South West there are two of us working; Mac is from Avon and his handler is called Ken Bennett.

What twaining did yoo have to go through in order to qualify fur dis amazing job?

I had to go through a lot of training initially to build a bond with my handler Mark when I was only 9 months old.  When I was just over a year old I successfully completed my certification at the FireServiceCollege in Morton. Each year, me and Mark have an annual assessment with other Fire Investigation Search Dog Teams (FISDT’s), which we have to pass in order to qualify for our license to be able to carry out fire investigations.

What does it mean to yoo to be able to help ofur people?

 Being able to help others means a huge amount to me.  Arson is a terrible crime so to help the victim(s) is always going to be rewarding.  When I make an appearance at community events, the lovely members of the public always make more of a fuss over me then Mark, which I love! HOL

 At the community events I particularly enjoy showing off my skills to the lovely people who are watching me.  They’re usually amazed when they see me in action, as I can show them just how good I am at sniffing out and finding the teeniest tiniest spot of accelerant.  

What is a typical day like fur yoo?

In short, a typical day for me is always fun and generally involves a bit of play with my tennis ball.  I spend the majority of my time with my family which consists of my mum Purdy, my sister Marley and my blood son Murphy.  Mark will take me out to public events too which takes up the rest of my time and of course the fire investigations that I attend, which are on average 2 per month.

Does yoo have a uniform? (Dat question is fur de furry ladies out der!)

Sorry to disappoint all you lovely ladies but I don’t quite have a uniform like all those brave firefighters do. I only have my paw protector boots, which I wear at fire scenes, my reflective harness so I can be seen at all times and my doggy lead. 

Uniform shot fur de ladies out der!

Uniform shot fur de ladies out der!

How does yoo twain yoo hoomin to be as pawsome as yoo?

 It was hard work to start with I must admit.  Mark was new to the role so it was bound to take time to get to know each other.  After our initial training period together (6 weeks) Mark really formed a bond with me and me with him!  He quickly picked up on how to understand my signals and learnt what I expect from him as my handler; mainly a big supply of tennis balls! HOL  

What safety tips would yoo like to share wiv efuryone?

Blimey where do I start! Well firstly it’s so important that everyone should keep safe by taking simple steps to make sure they prevent a fire from happening in the first place. 

 Secondly they should protect themselves, which is basically by ensuring your home has a working smoke alarm and that it’s tested weekly.  If you don’t have a smoke alarm then you can call your local Fire and Rescue Service to see if they can help.  If you live in Cornwall, you can contact us by telephone free on: 0800 3581 999 or by completing our online form found at: www.cornwall.gov.uk/homefiresafetycheck (Check out the rather fetching photo of Mark in uniform holding a smoke alarm. HOL)

 Now where was I? Oh yes and thirdly, make sure you and your family are ready to respond should a fire ever happen in your home by being prepared and having an escape plan already prepared. If you need a little help with this you can find a template on our website and information on how to make one: www.cornwall.gov.uk/EscapePlan

 If you follow these 3 simple steps, you and your family will be much safer and I will sleep well at night knowing that you all have working smoke alarms!

Where can we find more info on fire safety and awareness?

 There are several ways you can find out more so make yourselves comfortable. You can:

  • Visit your local community fire station; our firefighters are always on hand to help and would love to meet you, so feel free to pop along and say hi to them.
  • Visit our website: www.cornwall.gov.uk/fire which ontains a huge amount of interesting information.  If it’s specifically fire safety information you want then visit: www.cornwall.gov.uk/homefiresafety 
  • Follow us (and of course me!) for up to date news and information from our social media accounts Facebook and Twitter.
  • Contact us through      any of these ways:

Is de anyfing yoo would like to add?

Yes, I would just like to take this opportunity to say a big thank you to you Harry for doing this interview (I’m such a big fan of yours! *Blushes*). Also a huge thank you to all the support the public give me and of course my Twitter followers.  It makes my job so much more rewarding knowing that I am reaching so many dogs and people far and wide with my safety messages.  I hope to make many more friends along the way.

Now me being me I could not leave Nelsons staff Mark out of de intervoo so I puts some questions to him too after he used his sad hoomin eyes on me! Who could resist!………….

Hi Mark fanks fur doing an Intervoo wiv me. So where is yoo fwom and how long has nelson lived wiv yoo?

 Hi Harry, I’ve lived in Cornwall my entire life.  It really is a great place to live and work.  Nelson has been living with me now for nearly 5 years.

Yoo is handled by Nelson who is a twained Arson Detection Dog. What is he like as a boss?

Nelson is a great boss, although I would obviously have to argue it is the other way round!  He’s very chilled and relaxed and not like your average Springer Spaniel that’s for sure.  He does however demand a lot of attention and loves a good belly rub.  He’s extremely dedicated to his job and is extremely good at what he does.

Yoo is a Fireman is dis right? What inspired yoo to choose dis career?

 Yes that’s right but the proper title is firefighter, as we have both men and woman working in the Service.  I started working at Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service in 1991 because I wanted a change in career.  I wanted a job that I could actively play a role in to help the community, whilst also working with animals. So I have to say, my job really is perfect for me!

What twaining did yoo have to go through in order to qualify fur dis amazing position of bein Nelsons staff?

I had to undergo an interview which was carried out by two members of the Cornwall Fire Investigation team; one of which was the previous fire investigation dog handler, Richard; who looked after Charlie and Nelson Senior.  I had to confirm my knowledge of the Fire Safety Law, the Fire and Rescue Services Act 2004 and prove I had the ability to look after, maintain and handle a dog.  As I already owned two other dogs, I passed this with flying colours and they have all since become a part of Nelson’s family.

What does it mean to yoo to be able to help ofur people?

It’s great and a very rewarding job.  I particularly enjoy being able to engage with members of the community at events. Me and Nelson regularly attend open days, schools, colleges and a range of community groups to give talks on our role in the fire and rescue service.  It’s always well received, and Nelson always gets the most attention!

What is a typical day like fur yoo?

My typical day is always extremely busy! I work in the prevention department which is a small team of hard working individuals.  We work tirelessly on fire and road safety campaigns throughout the year and also visit homes in the community giving free home fire safety checks.  I also regularly visit schools, where give presentations on fire safety and what my role involves as a fire investigator.

Does yoo and Nelson get to ride around in de Fire engines?

Sadly not for Nelson but I occasionally do when I cover stations that have staffing shortages.  Me and Nelson are lucky as we have our own very special van to travel around in so if you ever see us, do give us a wave.  You can’t miss us out and about as the van is clearly signed on all sides.

Nelson and his staff.

Nelson and his staff.

Does yoo and Nelson do talks and show? Does yoo go to schools and fings like dat?

Yes we attend many talks and shows throughout the year.  It’s our chance to show members of the public what we do and how we work together.  You should pop along to see us Harry.  All our events are added to the Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service website: www.cornwall.gov.uk/fireEvents

Does Nelson live at home wiv yoo?

He sure does but he has his own luxury apartment in our garden where he sleeps along with his mum, sister and son.  We always enjoy spending quality time together when we are home and go out for lots of walks and trips to the beach. There’s never a tennis ball too far away either!

Is de anyfing yoo would like to add?

I hope everyone enjoys following Nelson from his twitter account – www.twitter.com/Nelson_FireDog. He always fills me in on all his activities and messages he receives which is always very nice to hear.  Nelson tells me he’ll be using his Twitter account to give regular updates on what he’s been up to along with some helpful tips on how to keep you and your families safe.  He may not always be available to respond but will always have his ear to the ground, that I am sure of!

So der yoo have it what an amazin pair dese too weally are. I feels safe in de knowledge dat dis pawsome duo are out der doing us all pwoud. As Nelson would say Stay Safe.

Wuv yoo all

Hawwy xxx

There’s Nails & then there is Janchristie nails!

Bella and Janchristie Nails

Bella and Janchristie Nails

Hi Efuryone Hawwy here,

Now all of yoo should know all about my good friend Bellisimo Bella @lfbbella and if not den where has yoo been? Now Bellas mum has a business that is all about nails and nail art and I saw some of dem and dey had dogs on dem!!! Yes dogs and dey are PAWSOME! so I thought I gotta find out mor about dis hoomin enterpwise so Bellas mum kindly agreed to let me intervoo her. Here is de result;

Fank yoo fur agreein to be intervood Bellas mum.

Hi  Harry , nice to meet you at last, my name is mandie. I’’ve heard a lot about you from Bella.

1) What kind of hoomin is yoo?

 I am a little fat blonde lady that is where the lfb on Bella’s name comes from!

2) who does yoo liv wiv and where?

 I live with my hubby, 4 dogs who I believe Bella moans about all the time on twitter and our 2 cats. We live on the Kent East Sussex border in a semi-rural area so it is nice and quiet and peaceful,  and we have lots of walks in the woods nearby.

3) yoo has an amazin business dat is inclusive of us animals. Can yoo tell me a bit about it?

Janchristie is a two part operation, the silent half does the creative work up until the stickers are printed and keeps the IT section working and I do all the talking to people and sending out the stickers and making the pretty envelopes – we like everything to be decorative or Bella grumbles.

We create and sell nail art stickers with cats, dogs, birds, horses, illustrations & flowers the photos and designs we use are all our own. My business partner is a professional photographer and some of the dogs we have on our stickers were rescued and rehomed by www.chancepixies.com .

We also offer a personalised service where customers send us their photos and we can create them a set of their own stickers.

We also sell some bits of jewellery and some beads so that clients can make their own designs of bracelets and necklaces,  but we are not replacing those once they go as we want to concentrate on the stickers.

De Cats whiskers!

De Cats whiskers!

4) How did yoo come up wiv de idea?

 Well, I have always loved painting my nails and using stickers on them and one day my friend and I were saying how boring the stickers were and wouldn’’t it be great if we could wear some with our pets on.   After another cup or three of coffee we decided to try and make some , we got quite a few positive comments from people who saw them so put a couple of ebay which proved popular, then last May started our own webstore.

5) who is yoo business aimed at?

Everyone, all ages can wear them and as with all nail art it is ageless.  Last week we heard that one of our client’s husbands had pinched some of the personalised stickers of their own dog and worn them on his thumb so they are unisex as well.   We also make them smaller if for young children and we are experimenting with toenail sizes which will be great for the summer.

 Funky!

Funky!

6) does @lfbbella  Bellisimo Bella help at all?

Well, she keeps my feet nice and warm when I am doing the orders as she sits under the desk when I am working and keeps grumbling that nearly all our dog designs at the moment are pure breeds, so we are hoping this spring to do a few cross-breeds to see if they would be popular and Bella and her brothers will probably be amongst them. Her cats are on our stickers.

I think I might change her twitter name to bellisimo bella it suits her, thanks for giving her that name Harry it suits her.

7) Where can hoomins get yoo pwoducts?

We can be found at Janchristie.com , which is our online store with LOTS  of designs to suit all nearly everyone and we are working on adding more.   I have an idea Harry, why don’t we do an offer for your readers, if they buy any 3 sets of our nail art stickers and put “Harry” in the comment box when ordering I will pick an extra set to put in free for them.

We still do the “normal ” nail art stickers too!

Purdy.

Purdy.

8) is der anyfing else yoo would like to add?

Thank you very much to you and @squiggledog for showing  @lfbbella around  while she has been learning  twitter and helping her to meet new people. I know she thinks of you as her twitter brother and squiggle is her best friend and she is having a lovely time on twitter so thanks for taking care of her for me.

 It’s been an absolute pleasure to finally meet you Harry, I loved your book and cannot wait for the next one and many congratulations on your engagement.

Our twitter name is @janchristieDNA  but we don’t get on there so much now since Bella has got her twitter account and is making such lovely friends I’m letting her be on there more.

So der yoo have it! If yoo love animals and nails den dis is de pawfect way fur yoo to show it! Oh and don’t furget Janchrisie kind offer buy any 3 sets of our nail art stickers and put “Harry” in the comment box when ordering and Mandie will pick an extra set to put in free for yoo. Pawtastic!

Go fetch some nail stickers. WOOF.

Wuv

Hawwy xxxxxxx

Not just any old Squiggle!

Bootiful girl wiv de Sooper Smile!

Bootiful girl wiv de Sooper Smile!

Hello efuryone Hawwy here

Now I has intervood a few wurkin dogs of late but I fink dat my bootiful pal @squiggledog has one of de best efur jobs efur! By de way I call my fwiend Dudette cos she sooper cool too! I was honoured to be able to intervoo her earlier on today inbetween her testing out new products…….

1) Hi Dudette Squiggle fanks fur takin time out to do dis. How old is yoo?

Uhh now I not pwecisely sure cos da records at da rescue were not too pwecise but about 7 years I finks. You see I comes from Ireland where I was a stweet puppy and da rescue tooks me in and den bit later dey twansferred me to nuver rescue in Southampton, dey my fweinds @scanimalrescue cos I lived der for 6 months and dats when I finally gots my furever home.

2) What kind of dog is yoo?

Des questions are twicky cos I lost touch wiv my birthmother in da rescue so I could not ask her about my father and  no one weally knows, but we finks I am terrier x collie but I am medium sized and scwuffy.

3) Where does yoo live and wiv who?

I lives in Hampshire, wiv a mummy hooman, but I got extended family dat I works wiv and dat includes uver hoomans and anipals.

4) yoo is a workin dog but yoo work in an Shop! What do yoo do?

I been workin now for da past 2.5 years, at www.kind4k9.co.uk it is an online shop so I don’t have to bover talkin to da hooman customers much, I leave dat to my hoomans but I started as da chief product tester, checking everything da hoomans fought was good,  making sure it was weally good, cos I wont lets dem stock any old wubbish. I den pwomoted myself to head of twitter marketing cos den I gets to talk to da all you loverley tweeps and da real customers like our mutual fweind Bella @lfbbella who been helping me wiv some testing recently. I am finking of making her head of testing pink fings, cos she like pink and pink clashes wiv my ginger bits! Oh and I also head of security cos dat gives me permission to barks at da delivery drivers!

Sooper product testing in action!

Sooper product testing in action!

5) Does yoo enjoy it?

I loves da fact I spends most da days wiv my hoomans, dey all mine! In fact everyfink is mine if I decides it is. I also loves da fact dat I gets to go on puter and to chat to all my fweinds on twitter and dey can’t tell me off for slacking cos I head of twitter marketing. I gets wegular bweaks cos der is a very comfy sofa in da office for when I needs to puts my paws up.

Impawtant dogs need er sleep!

Impawtant dogs need er sleep!

6) Does yoo gets to test or sample any of de pwoducts?

yeah sometimes dey gives me new stuff to test and sometimes I carry out stock quality contwol when dey leaves da stock room door open BOL. I checks all da pwoducts before we stocks em cos quality is very impawtant to us as a company and da homans say I am less twuble if given somefink to do, who wude! I never norty!

7) Are yoo de boss of anyone?

Of course, EVERYONE, cos you see da terrier in me finds it hard to share, I would have owned da company but da officials don’t lets me so I has to lets da hoomans do all dat.

I has a team of uver dogs dat helps wiv da testing if a product is too big or small for me or if it shampoo cos I delegate all dat, cos I don’t like baths.

8) Do yoo get a say in wot gets stocked?

Oh yes, cos a hooman might fink it a good pwoduct but for example wiv a toy how do dey know it feels nice in our mouths unless one of us has checked it. I wont let dem stock anyfink dats not in our best intewests cos I believe all dogs should be tweated kind and fair and der no need to be horrible just so hooman gets wat dey want!

9) Anyfing yoo likes to ad?

I would just likes to say fanks for da intervoo Hawwy, I wish you all da best wiv your career as an awfor.  I has met some lurvely fweinds on da twitter and dat been good cos you finds out dat it not us dat has da issues its da hoomans.

Oh yeah you did not ask me about my hobbies and I do likes to dig holes like dis!

Der be bones in dem der hills!

Der be bones in dem der hills!

So there yoo have it folks. Fancy a treat or toy that has been truly put through its paces by Squiggle then check out  www.kind4k9.co.uk yoo will find lots of goodies der to show to yoo hooman dey look pawtastic!

wuv yoo

Hawwy xxxxx

  

Wagg… not just somefin yoo do wiv yoo tail yoo know!

DALTON WIV ROPE TOY

DALTON WIV ROPE TOY

Hi efuryone Hawwy here

Now I comes acwoss all kinds of dogs on twitter fwom lay around hounds to workin dogs on farms or fur people wiv disabilities. Howefur I has stumbled acwoss a dog called Dalton @WaggFoods who has become a vewy good fweind of mine *puffs out chest in pride*. Now Dalton is de face, and I suspect de boss, of Wagg Dog Foods and he has bin kind enuff to take some time out of his busy day to let me intervoo him;

1) how old is yoo?
*impawtant ears* I is nearly two, I fink I may really enjoy being two as my mate Archie told me it is a very good age, as it means I is old enough to know what is the good trouble to be getting in to but young enough that my puppy eyes still work – I does ope my puppy eyes will always work when I as been elping! Would you believe that my elp is not always appreciated?! Like when I was retrieving the cable from under the desk – they still can’t figure out where I retrieved it from! 

2) what kind of dog is yoo?
I is a black, flat coat retriever and the boss (that’s my dad) says I as a very nice nature and small ears! I don’t know why small ears are impawtant, but e fought I should mention em so there you go – perhaps they is my bestest feature? Although I does quite like my tail too!!  

3) where does yoo live and wiv who?
I does live not very far from a place called Ripon, and work in a place just outside Dalton. It was named after me, although some silly people do fink that because the village was there first I was named after it – pfft what do they know!!
I does live wiv the boss, Mrs boss and my furless sisters, I also as a little bruva ernest who I is teaching all my learnings to, the same way my big bruva Monty taught me.

DALTON & ERNEST

DALTON & ERNEST

4) yoo is a workin dog but yoo work in an office! What do yoo do?

I is the face of Wagg foods (self-appointed obviously) and I is very busy talking to all my furiends on twitter and I also has my own blog which you should all subscribe to, we will wait for you to do it!! Pauses) I does ave a typist what I does spend all day bossing around advising of best working practises. When I is not doing this I do find time to keep the bosses feet warm, teach Ernest and ensure everyone in the office is walked on a daily basis!

WAGG TWEATS

WAGG TWEATS

5) does yoo enjoy it?
Yes, I is ther luckiest dog in the world and do agree wiv the saying – It’s a dogs life!
6) does yoo gets to sample de food?
The boss says I does all the time, but I does not get nearly enough!!! Although I is very lucky with the little bit I does get, when I get the chance I does try and give the food to other doggies to enjoy – I as my own pack oo carry out product reviews and other impawtant jobs for me, and I is at the moment trying to tell all my blogging pals about the treat offer which Alex (that’s the one oo as all the ideas) did come up with, when blogging anipals can review some of our treats for us.
I does ope one day I will be able to take over from my uncle Preston, TV celebrity dog and former director, as chief tasty in the business. *whispers behind paw* Uncle preston is now getting to retirement age.

DALTON WIV SNACK

DALTON WIV SNACK

7) are yoo de boss of anyone?
Everyone, although they does not realise this yet! The only people to properly recognise my greatness and leadershipness is little Ernest (which is manly cause he is little and if he does not listen to me I sit on him until the boss yells at me to get of!) and my proper brutha Pilot, he is from the same litter as me and now lives with my uncle and so I get to see him every day as e comes to work with my uncle at Wagg too. But e as to listen to me as I am a whole five minutes older than him!  

8) do yoo get a say in wot goes in de tweats?
Not as much as I should ave! Some of my pals on twitter ave been discussing Mammof flavoured treats but the boss as not looked into this as thoroughly as I would like – muttered something about them being exstinct, honestly any excuse!
However I does get to pass on any comments I is given to the board about all our products, not just the treats! Cause did you know we also look after small furies and as just started a cat food? (Although the boss wouldn’t let me try and of these products – sad not for me, and my puppy pleading eyes didn’t even get him to change his mind!)
9) anyfing yoo likes to ad?

I does fink I am very lucky, as I have a great life – being the face of Wagg means I ave made so many great furiends already and I know I will get to meet many more in the future. I also love coming into work every day with the boss. I would however ave one cheeky fing to ask all your followers, would you be willing to go and check out the website (this is not under my control, as I’m sure you can tell if it was there would be many more pictures of me) and then send your folks out to buy you a nice big bag of Wagg. Also I does  have a great life; I walk and run a lot and eat plenty. Perfect, if only every dog was as lucky as I is.

Sp der yoo has it a pawspective fwom an office dog! If yoo would like to know more about Dalton and his pwoducts visit www.waggfoods.com you will find his blog link der too.

As fur me I is workin on an intervoo wiv a cat next!

Wuv yoo all

Hawwy xxxx