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  1. Love animals and want to get close up and personal with them or try your hand at something new? 

    Then there's great news from gift experience company Into the Blue to check out their animal experiences!

    A Sheepdog Experience is one of the animal experiences available at Into the Blue
    A Sheepdog Experience is one of the animal experiences
    available at Into the Blue

    Try out your shepherding skills!


    They've got a special offer on - use the code ‘ITBKISS15'  until midnight on Thursday 14th February for Valentine's Day.

    Try flying birds to your hand
    Fly away to see their Falconry Experiences

    This code will give 15% off any* experience purchase UP TO £250.00  (there is no minimum spend)

    Try your hand at photographing Big Cats

    Try your hand at photographing Big Cats

    Even if you don't want to buy a Valentine's gift as such, this could be a great way to grab an animal experience with a special offer.

    Birds of Prey Photography

    There's Birds of Prey Photography

     

    *The usual product and affiliate program restrictions apply.  There are some non-discountable products which aren't eligible for this offer and you'll find them here.

  2. There's a new arrival at ZSL London Zoo

    Sumatran Tiger Asim came to the UK from Denmark in true tiger fashion.  He's come as a mate for resident female tiger, Melati.

    Asim had warm straw, snacks and drinks and a climate control.  His new keepers had visited him in Denmark to meet him and get to know him.  They discovered that he loves to play, loves to play, especially by pouncing on piles of empty boxes sprayed with strong scents such as herbs and spices.

    Welcome to the UK, Asim!

    So how is the romance going?   

    At the moment, Asim and Melati can smell and see each other from separate paddocks because Asim needs to settle into his new surroundings before he formerly meets Melati.  However, there are good signs - the keepers have seen lots of chuffing, a happy sound tigers to make to let each other know they've got good intentions, so this is a promising start.

    Asim was matched with Melati through the European Endangered Species Programme (EEP) for Sumatran tigers, which is coordinated by ZSL London Zoo’s experts.  It aims to save the species from extinction. 

    Find out more and buy tickets to ZSL London Zoo

  3. It's that time of year again and many of us will be glued to our TV sets to watch ITV's Britain's Top 100 Dogs Live 2019 on Tuesday evening.

    The one-show takes place on Tuesday 29 January 2019.   It starts at 7:30pm.  

    Ben Fogle and Sara Cox count down the nation's favourite dog breeds, and the top 10 are decided by public vote.  Between presenting the breeds, there are lots of dog stories from around the UK and famous faces too sharing their canine stories.   There are also facts about the heritage, key characteristics and personality traits of all the breeds in the top 100 chart.  At the moment, there are 217 registered breeds in the UK so the programme covers quite a few of them!

    Who is the Top Breed in the UK?  Dig for further info
    Who is the Top Breed in the UK?  Dig for further info

    So who are the Top Ten Breeds you can vote for?

    In no particular order, they are:

    • Springer Spaniel
    • Labrador
    • Cocker Spaniel
    • German Shepherd
    • Cockapoo
    • Boxer
    • Staffordshire Bull Terrier
    • Golden Retriever
    • Border Collie
    • Mixed Breed
    I know who is my top breed and my top dog, but you can vote here (T&Cs apply). 
     
    WOOF WOOF!

     
  4. Did you hear about the Alpaca who walked into an opticians in the town of Hennebont in Brittany?

    This is no joke - it did happen! 

    The BBC reported that the alpaca had been passing the shop when he or she stopped.   The automatic doors automatically opened and the alpaca wandered in, very quietly.   

    The alpaca spent a quiet half hour browsing the shelves and checking out lenses in the opticians.  Staff at Les Opticiens Mutualistes closed the door and called the police.   The owner arrived half an hour later to collect the alpaca.

    I bet the staff at the opticians couldn't believe their eyes when they first saw the alpaca wondered in from the street.

    Anyway, you don't have to head for the beautiful town of Hennebont in Brittany to see an alpaca.  Buy a Gift have a couple of alpaca experiences   in the UK you could treat yourself and/or alpaca loving friend to.  Check them out here.

    Find out about the Alpaca Experiences available from Buy a Gift hereBuy a Gift have a couple of alpaca experiences - check them out here

    By the way, on the edge of Hennebont, there's an impressive national stud farm where you can see traditional Breton carthorses and other equine species here, and find out about the different trades involved in looking after horses.   Canter off to find out more about Hennebont here

     

  5. Online pet retailer Zooplus.co.uk have a clearance sale on (not sure how long it will last for) and you can pick up some pet supplies at rock bottom prices. 

    What offers will they have for cats?
    What offers willl Zooplus have for cats??

    We’ve been using Zooplus.co.uk for a long time and found them to be completely reliable and offer a really good service.  

    We’ve been using the Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diets Canine EN Gastrointestinal dry food dog food for our German Shepherd – it’s for dogs with gastrointestinal conditions and pancreatic conditions.   It’s worked really well for him and we’ve always ordered it through Zooplus.  Everything has always arrived speedily and also by courier as it’s over £29 and delivered to a UK mainland address, and we’ve never had a problem with that, either.  (Find out about their shipping costs and free delivery thresholds here.)

    So as I mentioned, Zooplus.co.uk have a clearance sale with some great offers for dogs, cats and small pets, birds and fish. 


    Head off to Zooplus.co.uk to see their Clearance Sale

    For dogs there are offers on crates & kennels, there’s a bed and basket sale, collar and lead sale, grooming and care products, bowls and  feeders, clothing and dog toys. 

    Cats have clearance products in bed and baskets, grooming and care, cat bowls, litter boxes and trays, cat trees and cat toys. 

    You can also earn rewards to use online – I tend to use the rewards we build up for wild bird food  products so that our garden birds can have an extra treat, especially in this cold weather.

    Dig your way here to the Zooplus Clearance Sale


    Anyway, head over there and have a dig about yourself to see what you can find.  Not every product is in the clearance sale of course but have a look anyway.   Stock is limited, so don’t wait!

  6. If you're looking to do something different in 2019, how about volunteering for the Canal and River Trust?

    The Trust looks after and brings to life an incredible 2,000 miles of waterways and is a strong believer in making life better by water.  

    The 2,000 miles of waterways connect hundreds of wildlife habitat, which means it gives people the opportunity to get closer to wildife - and to help wildlife, as well.

    The Trust's environment team are always looking for ways to help waterways wildlife to thrive, to preserve habitats and to create new ones.  

    Volunteering for the Trust is a great way to get active, meet new people, make new friends and to do your bit!  And it's certainly something different to do with spare time!  Get outdoors, and make a difference.  There's nothing like spending time with others who want to do something positive for the community around them - it's a great feeling. 

     

    The Trust has a Spotter's Guide to Waterway Wildlife so that you can spot different species on the waterways.

    They are also appealing to people to feed ducks something better than bread - find out more about feeding ducks here.  They've even got a free duck-feeding guide but you need to sign up for it and they'll email it to you. 

     

  7. Well, this looks like a LOT of fun and I was really cheered up at the thought of doing some puddle jumping!

    The WWT in London (WWT being the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust, or is it the Wetlands and Wildfowl Trust, I can never remember which), is holding a London Puddle Jumping Championship.

    WWTs London Puddle Jumping Championships
    This pic makes me want to go and find a big puddle
    and spend the day jumping in it!

    Children of all ages (does that include err let's say 18+?!) can bring their wellies and have fun jumping in puddles.  There is a puddle jumping obstacle course, apparently, along with daily winners and other fun activities. 

    Puddle jumping is free with paid admission to the centre and free to WWT members.

    Don't forget to share your splashes at #puddlejumping

    By the by, the WWT have centres  around the UK so check out their map, there may be a centre near you.  WWT is a conservation charity that saves wetlands, which are essential for life itself. as they are the primary source of drinking water for people and wildlife.  They also connect us with the natural world and there's always lots of wildlife to see.  

    Jump over to the WWT website here