Spanish gateaway- dog-friendly Madrid

Recently got away to Madrid in Spain. Here is short post about my experience with dogs and dog-friendly places out there.

Spanish heaven

At this time of the year Spain is very hot for us humans, so you can imagine how hot it is for dogs. I noticed a LOT of dogs there, but also how well people looked after them. Always had water for them, or water spray to make their bodies wet.

Madrid is really awesome to have a dog with you. Almost around every single corner there are tiny parks which had people walking their dogs. Absolutely loved it. I also didnt notice much litter around.

 

So nice to see that there were a lot of people out there with different breeds of dogs. It looked to me that a lot of them were potentially rescues, so great people do that.The expectation is your pet must wear a chain or resistant rope lead that allows you to control it, and they must also wear a muzzle if required (I haven’t seen many dogs with muzzles tho).

The most amazing thing was that people were talking their dogs into subway, and noone had a problem. I think it is a little bit like a train here, but I felt maybe it could be a bit more stressful for doggies, potentially louder?! I have learnt later that you can have your dog only at certain times: 7:30-9:30am, 2-4pm, and 6-8pm, however during the months of July and August, at weekends and on public holidays, you can have full access. .

So massive plus to Madrid for being such a dog-friendly place.

The Buen Retiro Park

Lovely gardens and park was located just around the corner from my hotel. The name is means “Park of the PLeasant Retreat”. Stunning location which is the largest park of the Madrid and it belonged to the Spanish Monarchy until 19th centuary, but now it is public park.

This magnificent park is full of the beautiful sculptures and monuments, galleries, a peaceful lake and also host a lot of the events. That morning I have met a lot of runners and dog walkers, probably because of the location. Lovely run around made me going through the day.

Later on I have learnt that you can let your dog off the lead in parks and gardens between 7pm and 10am (in winter) and between 8pm and 10am (in summer), always remembering the opening times of each park, and with the exception of areas where it is strictly prohibited or in children’s play parks or recreational areas for the elderly.

What else around Madrid?

City is great, but what I love about Edinburgh is that I can drive minimum 20 minutes and I am in lovely country park. As I like to explore place I went one morning to absolutely amazing place for canicross too. Full of different trails, Casa de Campo really made me to fall in love with this place.

Casa de Campo itself means in Spanish: Country House. Apparently this place is the largest public park in Madrid. It is situated west of downtown Madrid.

I have seen there millions tiny rabbits, which probably would be awesome for my two muppets, but also it was so quiet and really just 15 minutes drive from the city centre.

Nice twisty trails with some hills if you preferred or really flat going around hills. That morning at the finish of my run, I have met a lot of other runners, dog walkers and bikers.

Madrid sounds like a place to go with your pooches!

 

 

An adventure to the heart of the Lanarkshire

I need to improvise a bit recently without a van to make dogs happy but also to have something to do at the weekends myself. Last weekend we were invited to my friend Lee to meet their new addition. Roger stayed in Edinburgh on his own adventure with his previous owners. They sometimes help me to look after dogs.

Travelling

I never knew that travelling with a dog by train in Scotland is so easy and actually enjoyable. We walked to Waverly Train Station in Edinburgh, it was very busy but Laferra is good walking near my heel.

It was super busy inside too, so we needed to wait in queue to get our ticket (next time I will buy it online for sure), however princess just sat and waited patiently for our turn. You can have up to two dogs with you on a train. We have managed to get the train without any changes. An hour ride by train was very nice as Lafie settled in no problem sitting on my laps as she was tired after parkrun. She was catching some energy for later.

Carluke

We went to see our friend Lee as she had a new dog coming all the way from Greece (same rescue place as Laferra). I was spamming a bit my page and wall with two puppies from Greece and two of them found home in Scotland. Both arrived Saturday morning and settling in well. However this black dog is special to me, as it looks totally like Laferra when she was younger. They could be easy half sisters??

They were actually very happy to see each other like they knew each other, or maybe Laferra could smell Greece? Ghini the black pointer was delighted to see Laferra. Hopefully one day Lafie could show Ghini how to get into sport 😉

Equitots Lanarkshire Community

My friend Lee has few horses, goats, rabbits, cat and other doggies too. It is like heaven for animals and children. Laferra even chased her cat (oops), loved watching the horses and goats. They organised a lot of cool things: ridding horses, creative activities (I cant wait to join them next time)- like painting the stones and some fun time for kids in forest. Lovely afternoon with dogs and friends just chilling. If you ever looking for something to do with kids have a look at their page!

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Feeling lucky to have an amazing friend like this. I also got a beautiful painted stones as a thank you for helping them out with Ghini and a beautiful bookmark which looks like Laferra. Thank you soooo much! You are so talented.

Return to Edinburgh

Unfortunately the train we were planning to catch has been cancelled so we needed to wait an hour for next one. Had a wee walk around and then Lafie just sat on my laps watching birds. Finally train arrived and we were on the way home. Lafie just fall asleep in the middle of a train and noone said anything to move her. Everyone was carefully passing her. Love how dog-friendly everyone and trains are. Absolutely amazing. I feel very lucky with Laferra being such an easy dog and coping with the world so well.

We have picked up Roger on the way and he was on mission to stop everyone on the way home (3.5km walking took us forever).

Roger the Explorer- What to do when you lose your dog?

Recently I lost Roger in the place I thought I had control over him. There are few factors to this and I don’t blame him but only myself. Here’s a short post with some advice that I have learnt from this experience.

Why he got lost?

Few factors to that:

  • routine has changed as my van broke down, so we took a bus to our usual hilly run.
  • I stopped using ball to keep him occupied.
  • He ran away after bunnies and I let him stay behind us.
  • I whistled but thought he knows where he is and where we were.

What did I do wrong?

So when I realised we lost him, I started searching for him (finally realising it was wrong direction). I whistled and whistled. Laferra kept with me and she really tried to help but she kept running with me. Someone said to me he ran the other way (which eventually I realised wasnt right and that how we missed Roger half way through). I moved from the place we lost him rather than staying as I started to panic.

What happen to Roger?

On the map below there is yellow mark at the bottom where we lost Roger. Roger overthink stuff and only he could thought of running all the way to top yellow mark (bus stop where we got off from the bus) to check if we are there. When he realised we werent there, he ran back to the park, but by that time I started thinking like him, so we met where the heart is on photo. Only Roger could remember a way that he only walked once. Only Roger would think to go and check if we are there. Eventually when we found him, he didnt look stressed, he look way chuffed with himself that he found us. Bless him.

What should I do when I lost him?

  • go to place where I lost him.
  • stay there and whistle and call him cheerfully (I thought I was going to kill him).
  • try to listen for him.
  • don’t panic.
  • don’t stress.
  • if I decided to move around, I should have left my jacket at the place I lost him (friend’s advice).
  • asked around few people rather than one who really had no clue.
  • when Roger was found I cried but I really should have greet him warmly (I gave him massive cuddle).

Happy ending

I was lucky that it was just Roger and I believe as a staffie x border collie he is super smart and just doesn’t think as ordinary dog. Roger is a dog who overthinks and remembers things that were showed to him once. I love him to bits and yes it was scary but I wasn’t stressed however was worried that something would happen to him as you can see he really went to explore Edinburgh. Now I ordered him a gift tho so no more missing Roger: tractive gps. I will let you know how we are getting on with it.