From Fiona Lewis, chiropractor and acupuncturist at Chirotechnic
As a chiropractor and acupuncturist for humans, dogs, horses and cats, I have seen that regular (but not excessive) exercise means a healthier body and a happier individual.
Unfortunately, city and suburbs dogs don’t have the privilege of large spaces to roam and run all day long as their country counterparts do. This can lead to a great many city/suburbs dogs becoming both unfit and unhappy.
Luckily for those dogs, Despina’s online book Little Dog In A Big City has come to the rescue, providing (free of charge!) all the information you need to help your dog become a fit and contented city/suburbs-dwelling pooch.
Use Little Dog In A Big City to your dog’s advantage and pass it on to your friends - it truly is a gift to city and suburbs dogs.
- Fiona Lewis, chiropractor and acupuncturist, Chirotechnic.
From Rosalie Horton, Senior Animal Behaviourist At Animal Welfare League NSW
In Little Dog In A Big City, Despina has written the perfect guide for people living with dogs with an emphasis on getting out and about with their dogs.
Exercise is not only good for body and mind but also helps forge the bond between dog and person, which is essential. Research has found that some common behaviour problems can be rectified by a suitable exercise regime and I often say “Tired dog = Happy person!”
Every year many dogs are brought to us at the Animal Welfare League for preventable behavioural issues and often if people were more proactive in their dog’s lives, by committing to a regular exercise regimen and bonding with them, we would not see so many surrendered. Dogs are highly social animals and want to be with us, spend time with us and share their lives with us, which should be a gift not a burden.
By making this book available free online it is accessible to anyone who lives with a dog, and we recommend it to all who adopt one of our dogs!
- Rosalie Horton, Senior Animal Behaviourist, Animal Welfare League NSW.
I am amazed at the wealth of information on this site! I fully recommend Little Dog In A Big City as something that should be read by anyone before they get a dog, because I believe it will help all dogs and their people.
For many years I’ve spent my days going from pound to pound rescuing dogs on death row. Many have ended up there due to supposed behavioural problems. However, when the dog finds his or her forever home and gets adequate exercise (not to mention obedience training and plenty of love) these so-called ‘behavioural problems’ magically disappear. So it just goes to show how much exercise can help dogs.
Congratulations to Despina on the amount of work she has put into this website to help people enjoy their dogs, and also to help these beautiful animals live a healthy and happier life.
- Jill Clinch, Jack Russell Rescue.
From Matthew Mazzaferro of Live Well Health & Fitness Studio
As the owner of a fitness studio, I've seen many lives change as a result of exercise. People feel better both physically and psychologically from exercising regularly and it’s no different for our four-legged friends.
As a dog lover with two furry friends I can relate to the challenge of improving a dog's behaviour. My Cairn Terrier and Doberman have two completely different personalities and it's not always easy to maintain a peaceful household. Despina's knowledge and love for animals helps communicate how to overcome these tricky obstacles in a clear and fun way.
I would recommend the site Little Dog In A Big City to anyone who has a canine companion or is thinking of making a furry addition to their lives, as it will help the relationship between two-legged animals of the family (in other words, us) and them.
Keep up the inspiring work Despina!
- Matthew Mazzaferro, proprietor of Live Well Health & Fitness Studio.
From Jessica Bailey of The Cruelty Free Shop
As a vegan and owner of a vegan business, I believe that animals are not ours to eat, to wear, to experiment on, to use as entertainment, or to abuse in any way. In other words, I believe that animals should be allowed to live happy and free.
However, when it comes to animals like dogs who we’ve domesticated to be companion animals, the situation is more complex: we’ve created animals who are dependent on us rather than free. And because we’ve created companion animals, we therefore owe them the highest level of care - and that’s what Little Dog In A Big City is all about.
Through this site, Despina helps people and their dogs on so many levels, because while it’s specifically about exercising a dog to keep him or her healthy both physically and psychologically, it’s ultimately about more than that: it’s about taking our responsibility as the guardian of these precious animals we call dogs absolutely seriously.
- Jessica Bailey, proprietor of The Cruelty Free Shop.
From Susie Ashley, the Herb Doctor
Firstly I would like to congratulate Despina for her passion and love for animals, and for taking the time to create a chapter-by-chapter guide for looking after our four-legged friends. Despina has basically used her experience with Jack Russells to create this free ebook, Little Dog In A Big City, but all her very informative notes can be used for any breed of high-energy canine friend.
I'm a naturopath and herbalist for both animals and humans. Since being in practise from 1990, I've noticed that there are a lot of companion animals who are overweight from lack of exercise and/or too much food. This inevitably causes a domino effect of poor health leading to illness and huge vet bills.
Luckily for those doggies, Despina's ebook outlines in detail a variety of exercise techniques that will guide your pooch (and you!) to fitness, health, calmness and happiness.
Despina also covers many day-to-day issues that we take for granted in looking after our companion animals. Issues such as: caring for your dog in hot or cold weather, and using the correct (and therefore safe) equipment - eg. leads, collars, harnesses, life jackets, cool-weather coats, etc. She also suggests the often-forgotten idea of having a Doggie First Aid Kit on hand (both at home and in the car), and while she acknowledges that verbal reprimands are sometimes needed, Despina strongly encourages teaching your dog positively - that is, by praising and reinforcing rather than the old-fashioned use of punishment and fear.
I've personally seen how this book can highly motivate someone who loves their animal: I gave the link to a client at my clinic, and she was totally in awe and very excited to follow Despina's instructions. So much so that she printed out each and every chapter of Little Dog In A Big City! Her last dog only just died at the age of 18, and she really wants to ensure her new Jack Russell has a long and healthy life as well.
Keep up the good work Despina - you truly communicate well with your doggies and relay the information on how others can do the same very clearly in your ebook. You're an inspiration to many, and thank you for taking the time and putting in all your efforts to share your knowledge with so many others. Well done!!
This ebook is filled with tail-wagging fun that will help your doggie - and also you - to be fit and happy. I highly recommend it.
- Susie Ashley (ND, MH), aka the Herb Doctor.
From Fotini Pratis, proprietor of Classy Tails
The overall message of Little Dog In A Big City is simple: our dog's well being is the same as ours, and a healthy body equals a healthy mind. On a practical level, it educates people about how to direct their dog's energy in the best possible way and details the tools and equipment required to achieve the best results for them and their dog.
It's widely recognised that regular exercise is vital in making any dog's life healthier, happier and longer. But I love that Despina highlights the fact that exercise is just as important for less-able-bodied dogs such as aging or arthritic dogs. I personally have experienced first hand what it's like to have a dog with a special condition, so this is a subject close to my heart. Despina emphasises the importance of continuing an active lifestyle with your special needs dog but doing it in a way that supports the dog's condition - for example, through the use of a pet stroller.
While this ebook is for all dogs, I believe it's of particular help to rescue dogs. Unfortunately some people are quick to judge rescues and write them off as difficult dogs with behavioural problems. But Little Dog In A Big City shows how adequate exercise can straighten out these so-called behavioural problems and show them for what they really are: a result of pent-up energy due to too little exercise.
I highly recommend reading Little Dog In A Big City even if you're not one for reading books. The language is straight to the point, and it's visually compelling too because of all the photos provided. Once you start you won't stop until you read the last chapter.
Despina is one of the most passionate, caring and knowledgeable people l know when it comes to our animal friends. Keep up the excellent work, Despina!
- Fotini Pratis, Chartered Accountant and proprietor of Classy Tails.
From Politician, Clover Moore
Dogs are such important parts of our lives: they give love and companionship, bring people together chatting over our dogs and, of course, encourage us to exercise.
I’m passionate about responsible animal guardianship, from expanding leash free parks to stopping cruel 'pet mills' that churn out puppies for impulse sales. Regular exercise is essential, making dogs healthier, happier, and better behaved. Little Dog In A Big City helps you get fit with your pooch and makes life with your canine companion fun.
- Clover Moore MP, Independent Member for Sydney, advocate for animal welfare.
From Nigel Reay-Young, Chairman of Sydney Dogs And Cats Home
Any website that gives information to try and save dogs ending up in pounds has got to be a good thing.
Little Dog In A Big City is all about making sure your dog gets the exercise he or she requires to remain a happy and contented dog. Many dogs in the city, because of their excess energy, end up becoming destructive if not given enough exercise. This is when dogs all too often end up being dumped and finding their way to a pound.
As Despina points out, not all dogs are high-energy dogs, so always remember to choose the type of dog that is suitable for you. Little Dog In A Big City gives many and varied ways of exercising your dog and yourself - though the dog’s interest always comes first.
The website’s focus on exercise, leadership and obedience can only be good for dogs and their relationship with the general public, so Sydney Dogs And Cats Home is very happy to endorse Little Dog In A Big City.
- Dr Nigel Reay-Young, Chairman, Sydney Dogs And Cats Home.
Naturopath and Medical Herbalist Susie Ashley is the Herb Doctor! Her range is Australian owned and made, and 100% cruelty-free (no animal ingredients and no animal testing).
SAY NO TO PUPPY MILLS! SAY NO TO ANIMALS IN PETSHOPS! SAY NO TO BREEDERS!
Adopt a homeless animal instead - they all deserve a second chance
It's estimated that 130,000 dogs and 60,000 cats are killed every year in Australia because there are not enough homes for them all. And the global numbers amount to millions upon millions every single year.
Puppy mills are a major contributor to the terrible problem of overpopulation. Puppy mills are essentially 'dog factories' where dogs are forced to churn out litter after litter, with no thought for the welfare of the dogs and all thought for profit. The dogs live in appallingly dirty, cramped conditions all their lives, and when they no longer serve their purpose they're killed, dumped or sold to vivisection laboratories.
Petshops fit into the picture because puppy mills are generally where petshops get their animals from. Furthermore, having animals in shop windows encourages impulse purchases, and adding an animal to your family should be a conscious, careful decision - NOT one to be made while shoe shopping.
Breeders contribute enormously to the tragic statistics above too. And it doesn't matter whether they're professional breeders or backyard breeders, and whether they breed for profit or not, because while there are homeless animals sitting on death row in shelters, any and all animal breeding is utterly irresponsible.
Now, here's where you come in. You can either be part of the problem or part of the solution. You can either buy animals from puppy mills, petshops or breeders and be part of the problem. Or you can adopt from a shelter or rescue organisation and be part of the solution.
If I haven't convinced you, visit your local shelter to see the homeless animals. Let their innocent faces convince you that adopting is the only responsible choice to make.
All information and photos are copyright © Despina Rosales.