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Our Behaviourist covers all of Cornwall and our  walkers cover Fowey, St Austell, Liskeard, Lostwithiel, Bodmin, Padstowe, Newquay, Mevagissey, Par and surrounding areas.

   
Pawsome! Newlywed Maria takes the lead to start dog walking business     
    

An animal lover from Roche has taken the lead and found her way into a new career, by launching her own dog walking business.

Maria James was studying to be a teacher for people with learning difficulties at Truro College but always loved being around animals.

“Last year was quite eventful for me as I got married and moved into my first house with my husband.” she said. “It was about the same time I realised I wasn’t happy in my chosen career and needed a change.

“I’ve always loved dogs and trained several different breeds in my life, but never thought I could work with them because I didn’t have any veterinary qualifications. Then my mum saw on Facebook that Ruffwalkers were calling out for dog walkers so it seemed like an ideal choice.”

Maria, 25, set up the canine-friendly business with her husband Richard under the Ruffwalkers brand, an established dog walking, pet sitting and dog behaviour company based in Fowey. And the venture is proving to be the perfect fit for the newlyweds and allows them to juggle work around other commitments.


    
 ​​“I help dogs to get the exercise they need by offering 60-minute walks, and Richard joins me when he’s not working in his other job,” she explains. “We both love being outside in the fresh air and are lucky to be able to walk customer’s dogs at some lovely local places such as the Clay Trails, Goss Moor, Luxulyan Valley and Cardinham Woods in Bodmin. Also, if dog owners are at work or need to be away for longer periods, we can make sure pets are fed, watered and allowed to stretch their legs.”
   
The enterprising pair live in Roche and have their own dog, a seven-month old Sprocker called Phoebe who they regularly train.

The business covers Roche, Vauxhall, Foxhole, St Dennis, St Austell, Penwithick, Bodmin and surrounding villages. Dogs can be walked on their own or with others if they prefer company.

“In the future we aim to offer puppy training, along with pet sitting and pet taxi service in our new dog-friendly van. We’re really looking forward to getting to know customers and their pets, and it’s an added bonus to have found a job that doesn’t really feel like work!”

For more information, visit the Ruffwalkers Facebook page, or ruffwalkers.co.uk or call Maria on 01726 216316.
    
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A pawfect start! Dog walker Roy celebrates first year in business    
    

   
A former soldier who was injured in Afghanistan is celebrating a ‘pawfect’ first year after launching his own dog-walking business.

Roy Newport was left with life changing injuries while serving with the Royal Military Police in Afghanistan.

Following a successful rehabilitation program, the 46-year-old from Fowey found his way back into work by combining his lifelong passion for canines with a professional qualification as a dog trainer to launch his pet business - Ruffwalkers.

And the venture is proving the perfect match for animal-lover Roy after a ‘pawesome’ first year in business.

“When I started Ruffwalkers a year ago I thought I may get a few local enquiries for dog-behaviour and dog-walking services,” Roy said.

“Yet the response was incredible with enquiries coming in from across the county and within a few months my books were full for weeks in advance.

“I quickly realised I needed more staff and we have now recruited seven self-employed dog walkers covering St Austell, Par, Fowey, Lostwithiel, Dobwalls, Liskeard and even stretching as far as Plymouth in Devon. It feels great to be able to help so many pet owners while ensuring dogs are getting the exercise they need.”

Earlier this year Roy gained his dog first-aid and canine behavior diplomas and has applied for his Master Trainer accreditation with The Guild of Dog Trainers. He claims to have "a 100% success rate" in dealing with disobedient dogs and has helped pet owners solve issues such as excessive barking, chewing or running to the door when someone approaches.
 “The dog behavioural side of the business has proved a huge success and it’s been great to see people so emotionally relieved when they realise that a few simple steps can improve the way their pet behaves. Despite the old saying it is possible to teach an old dog new tricks and by watching how owners interact with their dog and I can gain an understanding of why it may be behaving badly and help resolve any problems with unruly behavior.”

But the 46-year-old says the rapid journey of business growth hasn’t always been an easy one:

“It’s been a huge learning curve, from setting up the business to ensuring all staff members are insured and fully trained. In the last year I’ve met hundreds of dog owners and several veterinarians and learned a lot more about nutrition, health and what things can affect a dog’s behaviour and am pleased I can relay that on to my customers.”

Roy also gives up his time for free to help a local dog rescue centre, offering advice on common dog behaviour issues. He says he is also happy to talk to anyone on the phone thinking of purchasing a puppy and can offer important tips on the time, money and commitment needed to care for their new pooch.

Following the devastating injuries which ended his Army career, Roy feels his new vocation is having a positive effect on his life.

“Being out in the fresh air has also really helped with my condition as it focused my mind elsewhere, I felt fitter and it’s allowed me to get active again.

“It’s now a joy to walk out the door and go to work and it’s given me a purpose. I feel super proud that we have reached our first year anniversary and can’t thank everyone enough for their support.”

   
Former soldier has career change to start dog walking business
    

A former soldier who was injured in Afghanistan has found his way back into work, by launching his own dog-walking business.

Roy Newport was left with life changing injuries when he drove over an improvised explosive device (IED) while serving with the Royal Military Police in 2010.

Yet following a successful recovery and rehabilitation program the 45-year-old from Fowey has had a change of career path, by starting Ruffwalkers. And the venture, launched at the start of this month, is proving the perfect match for dog-lover Roy and allows him to get active again.

Roy, who is married and lives with his two young children, said: “After a lengthy recovery and rehabilitation process I was looking for something that was going to fit in with my family commitments. My wife came up with the idea of starting a dog-walking service, which seemed the perfect choice. Obviously it’s a bit different to what I was doing in the army, but it's great to spend time with so many four-legged friends and I get to keep my fitness levels up.”
    
In addition to dog walking, Roy offers a dog home checking service for people who are out of the hours for longer periods than usual, and a pet taxi service.

He said: “I know how important it is for dogs to get the exercise they need so I offer 60-minute dog walks to the beach, countryside or local parks in the Fowey and St Austell area. I can also make sure pets are fed, watered and allowed to stretch their legs if owners are at work or need to be away for longer periods.

“I’m fully insured and CBR checked and I hope my background of spending 11 years in the Royal Military Police can offer reassurance to customers of my professionalism, reliability and trustworthiness with their best friend!”

For more information, visit the Ruffwalkers Facebook page, or website ruffwalkers.co.uk or call 07577 064523