Purrfect Pets with Maria from Passionfruit, Paws and Peonies!

 

My Purrfect Pets Series focuses on different bloggers and their families – including their furry family of course! We all have different lives and I find it amazing to get a glimpse into other peoples homes and connect with them on all levels so I put them under the grill and ask them some questions. As a pet lover myself, I’m always keen to investigate how other people are doing it. This is a pet-positive series that any families with a pet of any kind can take part in, send me an email if you’re interested in being the next featured purrfect family!

This week we’re featuring Maria from Passion Fruit, Paws and Peonies. Maria can be followed on Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram and Twitter.

Hi Maria, thanks for joining us and being the first person to kick start this series! Can you tell us a little about the animals you have and your family?

We have had 5 dogs in all. Sadly our Cocker Spaniel has passed but we are left with four gorgeous dogs of various ages and sizes. It’s a lot of fluff to deal with! We have an elderly male Chocolate Labrador and an old female pug (the ‘parents’). Our Boston Terrier and French Bulldog are the young ones and are still quite a handful. My children are now grown and have moved out but the dogs bring us altogether regularly.

Do you think your children benefited from living in a household with pets?

More than i can express. All the dogs are treated as if they are the babies in the family and the kids are always coming home to see them. Photos and videos are always being shared.
The dogs are their family. They have both received so much comfort from them over the years. Our Chocolate Lab is the one who we all go to on a bad day – he is so kind and gentle and just lets you bury your face until you feel better. They have bought so much love and laughter into our home. Our pug is unintentionally hilarious and have made my children laugh so much over the years. Here’s a video of our Pug watching the Grand National this year…

How much more hectic does it make your day to have so many dogs to look after as well as the family?

It does feel a bit crazy sometimes and I would say four is a bit ambitious! My Boston Terrier is crazy about her toys and would be happy to play all day, but there has to be a limit so I can focus on my work. I’m a bit of a softy and I’ve had to learn to be firm. It’s all about balance. My house is only clean for about 5 minutes but you have to decide what important in life. I’d rather take them out for a long walk and work when they catch up on their sleep. My house will always be a bit scruffier with them in it, but it is a much happier home too. Sometimes I make them these Healthy Homemade Frozen Dog Treats which uses up my over ripe bananas. It does take more time than buying a pack but that’s 10 minutes well spent when you see their delighted faces! Yes, the dogs take hours out of your day, but I couldn’t do with out them!

What would you say is the most challenging thing about having your pets?

The guilt. A bit like when you have children, you feel guilty leaving them. I am lucky that I have family to look after them when I travel, but I still feel guilty if I need to go anywhere. I never leave them long, but they greet you as if they haven’t seen you for ever! It is expensive too, but you need to understand and except this before you get a dog – so for us, it is what it is. We take them to France once a year on the Eurotunnel, which is easier than you think – once you have their passports sorted out! You can check this VLOG out to get the idea.

What would you say is the best thing about having your pets?

Gosh, there is so much. The unconditional love you get no matter what. There are times I can feel dreadful and then they can make you feel wonderful, just with one toothy grin or a mad sprint around the house (apparently for no reason). They are just so sweet and funny. How can you not get taken out of your mood when you are surrounded by lovable dogs? I also adore the dog walks. Having dogs forces you out everyday. I’m a nature lover so it’s a real plus in my life. Here’s an example of a walking my pack in Surrey.

Do you have any advice for anyone who is thinking about adding a pet to their family?

Find the right breed for your needs. It’s so important to get this right. Dogs are not all the same and it won’t be the dogs fault if you can’t handle the energy it has when you have chosen an energetic breed. The rest is a bit like having a child. It’s best to join forums on Facebook for advice. I remember thinking ‘Is this normal?’ so many times when we first got dogs. The more you read and talk about having a dog as a pet the better decisions you will make.

A big thank you to Maria from Passion Fruit, Paws and Peonies for giving us a glimpse into her life and letting us get to know her pack! If you’d like to be the next featured family in this series, drop me an email or a message on Twitter.

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