Change Lives

Change Lives

Saturday, 29 April 2017

Eden Day 3.....

A simply amazing day with Eden.....

Friday, 28 April 2017

Eden Day Two.....

Little steps but massive progress.....

Thursday, 27 April 2017

Eden Arrives.....

The waiting was over today as a dog I described as "potentially one of our biggest rescues ever" finally arrived. In a rescue that's taken weeks to finalise, Eden as I have decided to call her, travelled all the way from Romania in a journey that took over 48 hours. I drove to Doncaster this morning to bring her home,  and already I can see what a challenge we have on.....

Eden''s mother was taken to a 'kill' shelter in Romania when she was pregnant. Nobody seems to know what happened to her or the rest of the litter, but for around a year Eden did nothing in the shelter but hide between her pallet and kennel wall. Facing away from everything, she spent her entire day's like in the picture below:

Eventually she was moved to somewhere else where some work was done with her,  but now at 18 months old she has still never been on a lead or been outside. Incredible to think but also very sad.....

That's when I was asked if we could help, and as I've said before, it doesn't matter to me where a dog is from if they find their way to SHAK and need help. However on that note  I would ask pepole to show us respect and to emphasise that the flood gates to dogs arriving from abroad or anywhere are certainly not open. We can only help so many and with Eden with certainly have a fill time project and won't be taking anymore.

Today though her 48 hour trip across Europe came to an end. Here's how it went.....

(Please note Facebook viewers will need to click on the post to see all the photos and video. Also anyone wishing to make a contribution towards Eden's transport costs to us or for her general upkeep can do via PayPal to or via cheque made payable to SHAK and sent to SHAK HQ Greenwell Road, Alnwick,  Northumberland NE66 1HB. Thank you.)

Wednesday, 26 April 2017

On Her Way.....

In the van and on her way.....

Tuesday, 25 April 2017

The Journey Begins.....

Potentially one of our biggest rescues ever starts her journey to us and a new life today.....

Thursday, 20 April 2017

Can You Give Biscuit A Home.....

Biscuit is looking for a forever home. He’s been in foster care for six weeks and has settled in beautifully whilst recovering from a leg injury. He’s a friendly, joyful chap and likes playing with his toys and other dogs but most of all he loves cuddles and snuggles. He’s a typical lurcher so will want to share a space on your sofa, preferably with his head on your lap!

He’s been staying with multiple dogs so should be fine to be rehomed with another resident dog though may be best with an older buddy as he does pester to play initially. He is a good boy in the home, very happy to settle downstairs overnight and fully house trained, absolutely brilliant on the lead.  He does have a prey drive but usual with lurchers.

He is 14months old. He's chipped, neutered and had all his injections.

For more information on Biscuit email Home check and rehoming fee applies.

(Facebook readers will need to click the link to see all the photos.)

Wednesday, 19 April 2017

Tina And Duke.....

Melissa had a great idea during our staff meeting yesterday when discussing how we move forward with Tina.....

Tina was handed in as a stray. So frightened she was in great danger of having nowhere to go because nobody could get in her kennel.

I went and got her and she has really blossomed.  Three weeks on from what really was a life or death decision Melissa came up with a moment of brilliance when I asked if we cold think of a playmate to help her even further.

Duke has been here so long because of abuse he suffered years ago.  He turned the clock back today and became a puppy again....

(For those unfamiliar with the dogs,  Duke is the dark brindle and Tina is the black and white.)

Tuesday, 18 April 2017

We Need You.....

Such is the demand on us at the moment, with so many dogs looking for specialist rescue, it's time for us to launch a new recruitment drive covering all aspects of our work.

So whether it is your dream to help dogs with issues and horrific pasts, or that you simply want to help keep their home the way it should be, provide that stepping stone back into the world, or if your talent is in the fundraising sector to make this whole thing possible, then we'd love to meet you.

We are looking for committed and dedicated people to join our team of Canine Welfare Assistants, the housekeeping team, the foster team and the fundraising team.

Saturday the 6th of May at 10am we are holding an open day at our HQ in Greenwell Road, Alnwick NE66 1HB where, if any of the above even slightly appeals to you, will provide you with an opportunity to find out exactly the kind of work SHAK does, meet some of the team and see exactly what it's all about!

For this charity to continue to grow and help dogs who really do need it then we need help..... we need you!

Friday, 7 April 2017

An Opportunity To Join Our Team.....


We are a registered charity and are looking for flexible volunteers who are passionate about dogs to join our team. Successful candidates will be given full training in the areas where help is required. Your duties will include:

·        Working along other volunteers and members of the team in our doggy kitchen
·        Preparation of dog meals (some require three meals per day) & giving out medication.
·        Wash feeding and water bowls
·        Update feeding logs on a daily basis
·        Replenish food stores at the end of each day
·        Wash and dry soiled bedding
·        Ensure bedding shelves are kept neat and tidy
·        Cleaning materials to be replenished, cleaned and stored in relevant area at the end of each day
·        Ensure Dog food preparation area is kept clean and tidy to the highest possible standard
·        General housekeeping duties

This will be a shared position as we need to cover the kitchen seven days.  Minimum 3 hour shifts from 10am – 1pm or 1pm – 3pm.  Alternatively, a full shift from 10am – 4pm.
Full driving license and use of your own vehicle is required.  
Previous pet care experience would be an advantage but not compulsory as you will not be dealing with the dogs direct. 
If you are interested please contact Kerry Bagier at for an application form.  If you do not have internet access please apply in writing, enclosing a stamp addressed envelope to Mrs K Bagier, SHAK, Greenwell Road, Alnwick, Northumberland, NE66 1HB.  (Please note no dogs are kept at this address).

Registered Charity No. 1125159

Tuesday, 4 April 2017

Learning To Trust.....

It appears I'm finally gaining the trust of Keene as recently he has began to interact ever so slightly.

I took these photos today, a far cry from the bottom photo which shows the dog I was first alerted too at the vets awaiting the needle.

(Facebook viewers will need to click the post to see all of the photographs. )

Can You Help Little Bud.....

We've had so many really sad stories arrive over the last couple of weeks,  and little Bud''s tale is right up there.....

Dumped and tied to a lampost, he was suffering from obvious signs of neglect such as a skin problem and being under weight. However the worst part of his poor condition was the huge haematoma that had taken over the whole of his left ear. The ear itself had ballooned to about an inch and a half thick!

So after a bit of a wild goose chase where we thought an owner had been found, yesterday was the day he under went surgery to cut the ear so it could be drained. On closer examination it was so bad he had to have what the vet described as 'stents' fitted.....

Bud is such a loving little guy, who love's being around people and other dogs. He deserves more from his life than hechas had so far.

We need you to help him on two counts.....

Firstly his vets bill was around £300. Any help towards paying that would make a huge difference.  You can pay by two ways. PayPal to

Or by sending a cheque made payable to SHAK to SHAK HQ. Greenwell Road, Alnwick NE66 1HB.

Please mark all donations 'Bud's Bill'

Also we are desperately seeking a new forever home for Bud as recovering from surgery in kennels is never easy.

If you think you could offer this little guy a new start then please contact

Thank you.

Friday, 31 March 2017

Night Owls Piece.....

Had a great response to the piece we did with Alan Robson last night, thank you.

For those that missed it.....

Thursday, 30 March 2017

SHAK On Night Owls.....

Had a great time this afternoon with an old hero of mine..... Alan Robson from Night Owls!

We had a laugh and recorded a piece that's being aired on tonight's show on Metro Radio.

Really good guy, and well worth a listen!

Saturday, 25 March 2017

Making Progress In The Sun.....

It seems that it's just the time of year for kick outs and abandonments at the moment. Many of these dogs end up suffering with behavioural issues that often lead to the worst for of aggression..... fear aggression.

I will get round to telling the stories of so many of our new arrivals at some point I'm sure,  but today in the sunshine one of the highlights of Rich and my day had to be the glimmer of hope that just maybe Keene was beginning to make a bond.....

Thursday, 16 March 2017

Great Night On Saturday.....

We had a great night on Saturday at the Shoulder of Mutton,  and I'd personally like to thank everyone who supported the event. Special thanks of course to everyone involved organising it, and to Carol and the bar staff for being such fantastic hosts.


1st Voucher for four to see The Full Monty at Sunderland Empire
Yellow 251-255

2nd Two day passes for Beamish Museum
White 51-55

3rd Afternoon Tea for Two at The Running Fox, Felton
Blue 886 – 890

4th Haircare Pack plus voucher for Wash, cut and blow dry at Albion House Hairdressing, Longhorsley
Yellow 781-785

5th Johnnie Walker 12 year old Whiskey
Blue 221-225

6th Electric Foot Spa
Yellow 716-720

7th Bailey’s Irish Cream
Yellow 201-205

8th Forever Living Goody Bag and fun size Bucks Fizz
White 316-320

9th Prosecco & Chocolate Truffles
White 466-470

10th Wine & Chocolates
Blue 976 - 980

11th Japanese Spa Gift Set
Yellow 246-250

12th Wine & Chocolates
White 421-425

13th Lagers of the World
Blue 906-910

14th Prosecco
White 476-480

15th Pinot Grigio
Yellow 761-765

16th Canvas Art Set
Yellow 206-210

17th Bombay Gin
Yellow 756-760

18th Urban Spa Gift Set
Blue 836-840

19th Prosecco & Chocolates
Yellow 121-125

Thursday, 9 March 2017

Newbies Settling In.....

Just a couple of pictures to show a couple of the new arrivals that have featured on here with such big arrivals.....

First up here's Daisy making a new friend in Paul and wearing her shiny new collar.....

Next up Keene relaxing in the sunshine..... even if it was for just 5 seconds! 

(Readers on Facebook will need to click on the post to see all photographs.)

Keene Update.....

Keene is still doing well. I'm learning more about him every time I see him, and I'd like to think he's learning about me too.

He's still a one for carrying his one lead, which he tries to turn into a game of tug everytime something alerts those hyper sensitive senses of his, but that's OK I've bought him his own wire lead.....

Tuesday, 7 March 2017

Can You Give This Beautiful Girl A Home.....

Tia is a 7 year old German Shepherd who is looking for a home.  She is a gentle soul, little nervous at first but incredibly loving once she's relaxed. She walks well on lead and travels well in the car. She could live with another calm dog,  possibly not a bitch.

She is a general all round happy girl who would love to find her person....and would blossom in the right home. We advise no cats or children under 10.

For more information email or to apply. Rehoming fee applies.

Thursday, 2 March 2017

A Huge Step For Keene.....

Continuing on the story of Keene, there was a big stride taken today as we went for a walk on a normal lead. Although he was a bit mischievous trying to tug it, we both enjoyed the relaxed approach rather than the rigid lead.....

Choose Life.....

Choose Life.....

A little idea that has been running through my head since the launch of the follow up to my favourite ever film Trainspotting was realised became a reality yesterday.

I'm sure everyone is aware of the 'Choose Life' tag line, I decided to do something that symbolises the decisions that are made about our dogs before they arrive with us.....

Featuring our very own Bren, who was himself facing the vets needle and is a great ambassador for when can be achieved when the correct decision is made.....

You can 'Choose Life' here:

Tuesday, 28 February 2017

And An Update On The New Boy.....

Of course yesterday I introduced you to another amazing boy, the one I have decided to call Keene, which apparently is German for 'sharp' and to be honest it really sums him up.

Keene had a tough act to follow after Axel''s impressive show, but he wasn't intimidated by the new surroundings,  he simple sucked it all in. I'm not sure if I have ever seen a dog that is so alert and switched on to EVERYTHING. He knows exactly where you are all the time, and is fully aware of everything that is going on around him. I didn't feel threatened at all, just aware that I was under surveillance! Even when we stopped for photographs there was a visible glance my way when I moved my hand slightly more over his side. I could see he was recalculating the situation. Though as you can see he did let me get that little bit closer.

On the way back we stopped to pick up his poo bag, but he beat Melissa to it.....

The incredible thing was once he did put it down and Mel picked it up, he ever so gently took it from her hand and carried it again.

Keene is incredible. A dog more intelligent than I've possibly ever seen before, yet he was a vets appointment away from having life taken away.

Update On An Amazing Boy.....

It was really nice to spend some time in the sunshine today, especially after waking up to snow. What was even better was spending it with Axel! This boy has come on so much and I don't just mean physically, his whole attitude to life has developed as well as his character.  So much so I trusted him to pose for these photos off lead....

I think it's fair to say that he was pretty pleased with himself!

And as a little reminder for those who aren't familiar with Axel''s story, this is how he looked when he was found.....

Readers on Facebook will need to click on the story to see all the pictures.

Monday, 27 February 2017

Road Trip For A New Arrival.....

I got a frantic phonecall on Friday from one of my most trusted rescue contact's.  The kind of phonecall that you its desperate the minute you see their name.... Because that's the only time they contact you.

Turned out there was a dog sitting at the vets waiting to be destroyed. Having had several homes he'd allegedly been used in protection training, but at 18 months old his life hadn't even started.

So I had a road trip south today, preparing myself for a dog that had been described as 'very sharp.' I was really going to have to be on my toes with this one.

What I was greeted with was a very confused and beautiful boy who watched every move I made. Once out of the van, on a rigid lead, he was an instant attraction for spectators sitting in their cars in the car park. I'm sure he noticed every single one of them.....

We had a gentle 4 hour drive back home,  on which he responded every time I said his name. You can see he is desperate to have that connection with someone, and being a suspected German Shepherd cross Malinois I wouldn't expect anything else.

I think the world outside whats he's known is a new and scary place to him. Exciting too of course,  we have to introduce him gently.

There's a bond between us already, I can see the desire in his eyes to belong and trust, but also the fear and bewilderment. It's our job to make the trust take over the fear.

Saturday, 25 February 2017

More Amazing Progress.....

Another amazing bit of progress today was with a dog that was found last Friday chained to a lampost and was understandably showing signs of fear aggression. I have to be very selective in what I say about this one as we do know some history.

Taken to the vets, he was looking at getting destroyed until I got the call.

Yesterday after being in our care for a week he trusted me enough to let me take the chain off from around his neck. Today, after a week on the 'rigid' lead we enjoyed a wander on a double lead.....

Another amazing soul who is rediscovering trust.

(Facebook readers will need to click on full post to see all photos.)

Big Changes For Daisy.....

Having spent a few weeks in emergency temporary boarding, I moved Daisy to The Rescue Place yesterday. She was perfect sharing the van (in a crate) with some of my dogs.  She's quickly settled and today she made a new friend in Rich.....

Thursday, 23 February 2017

A Date With Daisy.....

I introduced you to Daisy a little while ago..... a dog that had been written off for aggression issue's and was less than 24 hours away from a vets needle in a pound.

Today the weather was atrocious.  Wet, windy and the kind of day that makes me question why I do this. Surely an office would be a better place to be?

Then I went out with Daisy.....

This beautiful girl has issues, there's no doubting that.  However those issues are man made, and this is backed up by possibly finding out a little bit about her history before she ended up on death row.

I see her as a very special girl, and one that made my job today worth more than the rain could ever spoil.....

(Facebook readers will need to click on the story to see all the photos.)

Monday, 20 February 2017

New Kai 'Graffiti' Tee's......

The sunshine we've seen lately has inspired me to produce somerging both colourful and different with spring hopefully on its way.....

The Kai 'Graffiti' T Shirt is unlike anything I've ever produced before, as individual as the big man himself.  You can order yours here:

Thursday, 16 February 2017

Where We Are At The Moment.....

I'd like to thank everyone for their patience and continued support during the quiet time on here. My time just seems to disappear at the moment, but everything will be so worth it. The Rescue Place is going through what I can only describe as a 'life changing' redevelopment, which will not only make our job easier but also improve the lives of our dogs beyond my wildest dreams. Coupled with a new exciting venture that I'm hoping will help us find homes or rescue places for some of our dogs we think are ready, then you can maybe begin to imagine how it's so difficult to find the time to sit and write on here.

More on all of the above when the time is right, but however life does continue to go on, and the need for our work is as intensive as ever.  On Tuesday teatime I received a call from a vet who had a dog booked into be destroyed. Despite not having space,  or even premises capable of taking another, we came up with a plan alongside Northumberland County Council Animal Welfare (who were again amazing) and we were able to stop this beautiful girl losing her life. After a couple of assessments from their team and myself and a couple of days in temporary boarding I'm delighted to say that she is moving to abother rescue soon. She was so close to losing it all.....

Another who was facing destruction and the subject of a few frantic phonecards is Daisy. She ended up a shelter where she was showing signs of aggression and dog aggression.  Again the council contacted us as she finished her last day as a stray, and of course I said yes.....

She is currently again in temporary boarding, but today I spent my second day assessing her. It's early days but the first signs are good.....

(Facebook viewers will need to click on the post to see all the photos. )

Jenson left and Daisy right. Daisy was due to be destroyed and dog aggressive. 
Daisy and Fagan who is a great stooge dog as he wants to be on his own! 

Ember Update.....

I think it's fair to say Ember stole everyone's hearts when she arrived late last year. Emaciated and in a right mess.....

She came home with us after CT scans and all sorts at the vets, in a desperate bid to find out what was causing her to be so skinny and weak.

I thought I'd share with you some photos I took on her walk this morning.....