I have admired Annabel Giles since I saw her (forgive me Annabel) several years ago not getting Gotcha’d by Noel Edmonds as she spotted the joke immediately. Sadly didn’t get to meet her until recently, but she is every bit as charming, funny and determined as I hoped she’d be. The owner of Godfrey, a Pug who delights everyone in Brighton, she has had to make some adaptions to her fashion instincts to accommodate him, read on…..
Annabel Giles, Brighton, owner of Godfrey the pug
Q1 What makes a good pet owner?
I think it’s someone who cares about their animal, but not too much or too little. It’s important to realise that they are animals, and not people, and to treat them accordingly.
I try to take into account the fact that his sight is very bad – he lost an eye on a rosebush when he was a puppy, and his other eye has now got pigmentation, so it’s like looking through a very dark pair of sunglasses for him. I wear a bright yellow mac when we walk, I make sure we take the same route at night, I have trained him to come back to a clap rather than a call, as it’s easier to pinpoint.
Q3 What campaign or law would you create to improve the life of pets in the UK?
I would ban puppy farming completely, and have it made into a criminal offence.
Q4 What advice would you give to someone buying their first pet?
If it’s a pedigree, research the breed thoroughly. Find people with a similar set-up to yours, and ask questions, as many as possible. Insist on only buying a puppy if you can meet the mother too, and check it’s a legit enterprise. Don’t buy from a petshop or a man in a lay-by.
If it’s a rescue, have the pet on a home trial first of all – that way it’s OK to back out if either you or the animal don’t like the situation. If problems emerge once your pet is settled in, then call an animal behaviourist as soon as possible, don’t leave it too long.
I would like my next dog to be a rescue puppy-farm bitch, as I can’t bear the idea that they have never been in a home or sat on a sofa or given any love.
Our thanks to Annabel for doing our interview, you can follow her on Twitter @Annabel_Giles I can recommend her Tweets!