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Thorpe Abbotts trainer calls on owners to prepare dogs for post lockdown

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A Thorpe Abbotts dog trainer says she fears for the mental health of dogs bought during lockdown as measures continue to be eased.

Hazel Troth, who runs The Diss and Harleston Dog Training Club, at Haggle House in Scole Road, said dogs could be affected badly as their new owners go back to their workplaces.

She said: “These new puppies or rescue dogs will suddenly be left alone after having all the attention from their owners for so long.”

Hazel Troth who runs The Diss and Harleston Dog Training Club. Picture: Mecha Morton.
Hazel Troth who runs The Diss and Harleston Dog Training Club. Picture: Mecha Morton.

“Also, the shock of suddenly seeing other dogs when they go out for a walk, all of these big changes could cause dogs great anxiety.”

The championship level judge and competitor said that even though the club only reopened on June 1, she has had lots of people already asking for sessions so their canines can be ready for the change.

Mrs Troth said: “Due to restrictions we can only have four dogs at a time in our new classes, but this will at least help puppies get used to seeing other dogs and the classes will help them with other things too.

“Some new owners would never have had a dog before and a well taught puppy does make a very lovely family dog.”

The trainer, with around 60 years of working with dogs and owners, said after talking to fellow trainers they are worried the issues of unprepared dogs and owners could be similar to another time when people are not ready for the responsibility of owning a new dog.

She said: “When lockdown fully finishes this could be similar or worse to when people buy puppies for Christmas.

“Once people start to go back to work and see their dogs are affected or not trained enough, we could see some going to rehoming centres, and that is the worry for us.”

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