Taking your dog on holiday with you matters especially if like us you see your pets as part of the family. Holidays are times to make treasured memories and they can be enhanced if you have man’s best friend along for the ride.

Less stress

It is so worrying to leave your dog behind. Kennels can be far from perfect and even family and friends may not look after your dog exactly as you would wish. We know how much exercise our dog needs and what food works best for him. If your dog is with you, you can leave these types of worry behind along with the heavy financial costs that can come via kennels and dog-sitting.

Be realistic

Having  said all that it is important to be honest with yourself when planning your holiday. If you intend to visit lots of famous sights, some of them many not be open to dogs. Stately homes and museums are unlikely to allow dogs inside although some will let you take them in the grounds and special areas. Research is important as many holiday accommodation providers will not want you leaving an animal unattended in their property. Doggy welfare should come first and obviously leaving them in warm cars is unacceptable too.

The perfect holiday with your dog

This is likely to take full advantage of the beautiful areas of the UK that you can explore in fun walks with your pet. We have stunning countryside and glorious beaches. Again, it is about researching where you can safely exercise your dog and be assured of a warm welcome. If you are like us when planning your adventures you will also want to check out genuinely dog-friendly pubs and eateries.

Where to stay

Check that your accommodation is genuinely pet-friendly perhaps by checking  out some reviews online. Also make sure you are aware of their rules around pets and that what they offer fits in with you and your pets’ needs.  Camping is an option but I tend to prefer a holiday cottage and remember a particularly lovely time on the Gower with our dogs.

You may want to check out Powells Cottage Holidays as they provide self-catering cottages across Wales with over 150 to choose from.

Other considerations
  • Ensure you have details for the local vets just in case
  • Pack the things your dog will need – food and water bowls, bed or blanket, toys, any medication
  • Plan your holiday route and your days out so you know where you can stop to give your dog a break from travelling
  • It should go without saying that you wipe up any dog mess so have those poo bags at the ready

Do you take your pets on holiday with you? What are your top tips for dog-friendly adventures?

Taking Your Dog On Holiday With You


Collaborative post









Cuddle Fairy
Twin Mummy and Daddy

Confessions of a New Mummy

The NHS celebrates its 70th birthday this year. The UK is so well-known for having an institution that provides healthcare free of charge at the point of delivery. It was launched by Aneurin Bevan the then health secretary at Park Hospital in Manchester in 1948 not that long after the end of World War Two.

Fairness in healthcare

Hospitals, doctors, nurses, pharmacists, opticians and dentists were brought together under one umbrella organisation looking after the health needs of the nation. It meant that great healthcare was not just for the rich and provided reassurance for less well-off individuals and families.

Helping family members

We all have probably had times where the NHS has helped our physical and mental wellbeing. From the baby check, where my parents were told I “babbled a lot” in around 1970 (clearly a blogger in the making) to my later battle with depression, the NHS has served me well over the years.

My husband has seen them really try to get to the bottom of his 3 forms of psoriasis trying so many treatments to tackle his debilitating condition.

My children have not visited the doctor much  but last year my son needed an operation and we did not have to pay. That makes the UK so different from so many countries and also explains the deep affection most people have for our NHS.

Of course, there will be arguments about levels of funding, human errors and the introduction of private sector involvement but in this post I just want to say that the initial idea of the NHS seems very fair and quite revolutionary to me.

I have a friend who is a paramedic and is the most amazing woman. I remember an ambulance turning up when my brother became ill at home and how reassuring it was to feel that someone knew what they were doing and could actually make things better.

The Driving Force

So I was interested to see this infographic from Fulton Leasing introducing some facts about the driving force behind the NHS.



What does the NHS mean to you?

3 Little Buttons

There are times in your life where you’d like to go on that once in a lifetime trip. It could be something you’ve been saving up for or just a spontaneous vacation that you have to experience. Either way, this big vacation requires some extra planning to make sure it’s exactly how you’d imagined it to be. This careful consideration will ensure you get everything just right, and each element will make the trip the most memorable one to date. This type of holiday isn’t only reserved for people in retirement or youngsters embarking on a new adventure; this can be for anyone who’s ever dreamed of something they’ve always wanted to do.

So if you’re looking for the holiday of a lifetime, check out these tips on how to make your dreams a reality.

Choose the destination

For many people, there is that location in your head that you’ve had your mind set on going to for some time. It might be a safari in Africa or enjoying the glistening sun on a glorious beach in the Maldives but whatever your preference, deciding on the ideal location will help you set your budget. There is a range of useful travel guides to help you plan your stay, plus you’ll get an idea of costs and extras you might want to experience on your trip.

Figure out your budget

Budget is one of the most significant factors in determining where you go and what you can do on your trip. The more you can save towards this experience means you can do everything you’d like to without worrying too much about what to budget in. There will be certain aspects such as food, drinks, and preparation before you depart that will need to be considered but if you have your heart set on your exact itinerary, be sure to plan the date you want to travel so you have enough time to save your hard-earned cash in preparation.

Book the little things in advance

To experience everything you’d like to on your vacation, researching and booking ahead of your arrival will help you save costs on a range of things. You can book everything from transfers from the airport, entry to attractions and landmarks, day trips and shopping visits from your accommodation. With some advanced booking options, you can skip queues and gain money off coupons on your vacation too.

Book and begin your countdown

There’s nothing more exciting than counting down the days to a vacation, and it’s even more of a thrill when it involves a trip that you’ve been planning for years. Once you’ve booked everything, getting luggage, vaccinations, currency, and insurance is essential to ensure you have everything you need on your stay.

Once you have a plan in place and you’re looking forward to this dream holiday, don’t forget to have fun, make tons of memories and enjoy every single moment of your trip of a lifetime.

How To Have The Holiday Of A Lifetime


Confessions of a New Mummy

Postnatal pelvic floor damage is an issue that affects many women and yet, is rarely discussed. The recent issues raised regarding vaginal mesh implants have led to changes in how women are given information about looking after their pelvic floor health. But there is a lot more to be done.


As soon as a woman confirms her pregnancy, there are many messages and medical professionals who become involved.

Pregnant women are given information on what to eat and what to avoid. Likewise, they are given information about the signs of pre-eclampsia and other medical issues.

They will receive information on breastfeeding and formula feeding and duly encouraged to opt for the feeding system that works for them and their baby.

What is rarely discussed in the pelvic floor muscle.

The pelvic floor, pregnancy and birth

The pelvic floor is a sling-like muscle that runs across the body from the base of the spine at the back to the pubic bone at the front.

It keeps your bladder, uterus and bowel in place, and is also the muscle that helps to control the release of urine.

It is affected by pregnancy hormones, which weaken it slightly. Labour also affects it, as does pushing to deliver your baby.

Some birthing techniques affect it too, such as forceps delivery. And it can also be damaged during a c-section birth or where the baby is big or delivered ‘awkwardly’.

What happens when it is damaged?

Some women suffer from urinary incontinence, the accidental leaking or urine. This could be when they feel the urge to urinate when they exercise, cough, laugh or sneeze.

It may not be life-changing but if this is happening to you, you may feel the need to keep incontinence pads with you to manage the problem.

For some women, the damage to the pelvic floor can extensive, leading to prolapse. This is where the muscle is damaged or not strong enough to keep the organs, such as bladder, where they should be.

A prolapsed bladder will fall into the vagina. Painful and difficult to manage, many women undergo surgery. In recent years, the preferred surgical solution was vaginal mesh inserts, although as we have seen, this didn’t work for everybody.

Prevention is better

The reality is, that for many women, issues with their pelvic floor muscle during and post-pregnancy could have been avoided.

It is no recognised that along with breastfeeding, pelvic floor health should be discussed in more detail during the birth planning process.

Here are six ways to look after your pelvic muscle, and possibly prevent damage during pregnancy, labour and after the birth too;

#1 Ask your midwife and health visitor for more information on how to strengthen your pelvic floor ready for labour and delivery

Midwives and health visitors are being trained to deliver better information and support for women struggling pelvic floor health. This includes exercises as well as managing incontinence after pregnancy with pads and diet.

#2 Hormones and the weight of the growing baby will have an effect on the pelvic muscle

This could lead to short-term urinary incontinence during pregnancy. As well as keeping incontinence pads with you, making sure you visit the bathroom in good time and stay hydrated too, minimising caffeinated drinks.

#3 Start pelvic floor exercises during pregnancy and continue after the birth as soon as you feel able to

They are simple clench and release exercises, repeated several times a day. They are free and don’t require specialist equipment, although there are some products you can buy to help you perform these exercises better.

#4 Stay active

Regular exercise – at least half an hour a day on most days – can be beneficial for both body and mind. Specific exercise such as pregnancy yoga is also beneficial to the pelvic floor.

#5 Eat a balanced diet

This helps you to avoid constipation which places an extra strain on the pelvic floor muscle and your bladder. Staying hydrated is important too, but sip water through the day rather than gulp it larger drinks.

#6 Ask for help

If the problem continues or it gets worse, or you experience pain, then seek help. Incontinence can be a sign of a urinary tract infection (UTI), especially if it is painful when you urinate.


There are treatments available for urinary incontinence. It is not something that you have to ‘put up with’, and neither is it something that comes with being a mum.


HARTMANN Direct is a leading online retailer of high-quality incontinence products suitable for use during and after pregnancy.

Post Comment Love

I am sharing my highlights of the week because it is always important to focus on the positives. Despite coming down with a very yucky bug that laid me low for a few days, my week is on the whole a good one.

1. We took delivery of two goats Dotty and Mabel who are keeping our back field down a bit. They are so sweet and friendly. They tempt the children outdoors and away from screens too so that’s a big plus.

2. My daughter is suddenly comfortable with taking a shower. This was a big success that many parents may take for granted. Willow has issues around water since being a baby and has always showed sheer terror at the idea of a shower. We had a problem with the heating in the bath room so I persuaded her to give a shower a try. I came up with the idea that she could wear a swimsuit if she wanted and for some reason that seemed to reassure her. After initial brief trembles, she ended up giggling and drenching me in the process. She now says she almost prefers showers to baths as they don’t take as long. I am so over the moon about this little progress in our lives.

3. My husband has had some overtime and financial boosts are always welcome here. It means we are working to a new timetable as a family but we are building in quality time including lunch dates in the village for coffee so I am not complaining one little bit.

4. My eldest son is really thinking seriously about his next steps in life. He has not made any decisions and there is no rush to do so. It is good to see him wanting to explore options though. In other news, I have realised he is 18 in November so have started discussing what he might like to do for that important milestone.

5. I have found my late mum’s recipe file again and am going to enjoy trying out some retro recipes with Ramsey who is 12 and loves cookery.

Life just seems a lot more balanced currently and I am enjoying that.

Twin Mummy and Daddy
My Random Musings
Five Little Doves

Lucy At Home UK parenting blogger