THE MODERN MINT BLOG
Modern Mint are ABSOLUTELY THRILLED to announce the new charity we will be supporting in 2016 –
Pets As Therapy.
Pets as Therapy are a fabulous charity using pets to change lives. We first came across them last year during a garden talk we were doing. Whilst sheltering from the rain we got to meet and chat with the charities Chair of the Board Anne Clilverd and her Pets as Therapy dog Cesc, a beautiful and calm whippet.
(Cesc has the softest fur coat you will ever come across, should you meet him and Anne at a Pets as Therapy event. Check here to find out where the charity will be next!)
Pets as Therapy has been running for 33 years and offers something quite unique – animals that help humans. Volunteers take their pets on therapeutic visits to a range of venues across the UK – hospitals, hospices, nursing homes, care homes and schools – where the pets can provide companionship, friendship, confidence and enjoyment to the people who need it. Pets as Therapy is about improving lives.
One of Pets as Therapies big projects is called Read 2 Dogs. It is a way to encourage children to gain confidence, reduce stress and become less self-conscious when reading to others in a group. If young people lack confidence, perhaps because they have difficulty with reading, the Pets as Therapy dog provides a focal point that relieves them of this pressure.
Dogs, as we all know, are non-judgemental.
A volunteer and their Pets as Therapy dog will go into a school classroom and introduce who they are and a little about what they enjoy, before telling the class how much the dog enjoys hearing stories. The children, who sit close to the dog, are encouraged to read the chosen story out loud and explain any difficult words. At the end of the session the children have the opportunity to stroke the dog.
Anne told us:
My volunteer work has now extended to our Read2dogs scheme and Cesc and I listen to Primary school children with their reading. The teachers have been delighted with the difference this makes to the children’s reading and behavior. I am privileged to see every week the difference PAT dogs make to peoples lives.
Pets as Therapy also do amazing work with people suffering from debilitating mental and physical health conditions, including dementia and autism.
It really is a charity with people at its heart.
What can you do for Pets as Therapy?
You can volunteer your time. Find out if you and your dog or cat can become part of the Pets as Therapy team.
Or you can learn more about the work of a Pets as Therapy dog by reading the tale of Doug The Pug – Doug the Pug: A Working Dog’s Tale.
Modern Mint are proud to be supporting Pets as Therapy through 2016. Will you?
Brought By Bike is an excellent website I found last month, where businesses offer their services by (of course) bicycle. Modern Mint and my topiary work is now live on the site offering my topiary services, via bike, to the following two postcodes – CM1 CM2 Now I can imagine I will need to borrow a ladder should anyone have a larger shrub, but most town gardens in the Chelmsford area have a need not just for privacy but to let light into the house… so a balance must be struck when shaping hedges and shrubs to cover both needs. …
Transforming Topiary – a video made for the European Boxwood And Topiary Society by Charlotte Molesworth and I, in her garden. We take a dog topiary and work out how to update it, turning it into a bird. Worth a watch I think, and hopefully useful to you! You can see more of my clipping on the topiary page. Or read my Spring 2021 Topiary Provocation here.
Phillyrea is one of my favourite plants for topiary. I have been using it for quite a few years as a specimen shrub, mostly due to the fact it clips well and has a tough habit – all good characteristics for a topiary plant. It also has a reputation for being an excellent nectar source for bees… Read more about Phillyrea here. Mentioning this to Malcolm Thicke, a market garden historian and writer, he sent me a some photos of topiary and phillyrea mentioned by John Worlidge in Systema Horticulturae from 1682…. incredible! He also mentioned to me that in …