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Abergavenny teen youngest information canine pet raiser in Wales

A GWENT teenager has change into the youngest information canine pet raiser in Wales.

Rowena Smith, 19, from Abergavenny, is elevating black Labrador pet Lilly for all times as a information canine.

She is elevating the 13-week-old alongside mum Sheelagh Kerry. Ms Smith is elevating the pet alongside her job as a canine coach in Cardiff.

Rowena Smith with Lilly. Rowena is Wales’ youngest Information Canine pet raiser

She stated: “We volunteered collectively in order that we might do that as a staff. Once I’m out, mum or dad shall be at dwelling, so it offers us extra flexibility to take care of a pet.”

The household will spend a yr instructing Lilly a spread of behaviours with the help and steering of Information Canine workers, to organize her for the life abilities she is going to want for a working profession.

Lilly enjoys spending time on the household’s smallholding with chickens and 20 sheep. “Lilly is fairly good round them,” Ms Smith stated. “The chickens are dog-savvy and can go on the assault, so that you’ve acquired to be cautious of them, not the opposite manner spherical.

“Lilly loves to look at my mom feed the sheep.”

South Wales Argus: LillyLilly

Ms Smith believes others her age might be suited to being a pet raiser. “Many take a niche yr or are nonetheless dwelling at dwelling and that’s a very good time to do it, earlier than you begin working correctly. Younger individuals are adaptable to new coaching concepts and fewer set of their methods.”


Ms Smith is aiming to make a profession out of working with canine. She stated: “My pals weren’t stunned that I volunteered, as a result of I’m at all times doing stuff with canine. They’re impressed and suppose it’s a extremely good factor.

“Some say it is going to be laborious handy her again when it’s time for her to enter additional coaching, however I believe it is going to be okay. You realize from the beginning that you simply’re not maintaining her.

“I’ve been to Finland working with sled canine and huskies, and I plan to return this winter.

“My mom will take care of Lilly once I’m away, which is one other good purpose to use collectively or as a household.”

Lilly has presently had restricted experiences as a result of her age however has been attending a Information Canine pet class and had a profitable first journey to the grocery store.

South Wales Argus: Rowena with Lilly during a visit to the supermarketRowena with Lilly throughout a go to to the grocery store

Rachel Lord, Information Canine’ pet improvement advisor, stated of Lilly and Rowena’s first go to to a grocery store: “She walked to an ideal unfastened lead and had enjoyable experiencing a brand new place. Rowena gave Lilly loads of reassurance and breaks to smell round, and Lilly’s glad little waggy tail informed us she was fairly comfy with all of it.”

Volunteers who’re enthusiastic about turning into a pet raiser must have entry to a automobile, be with the pet for many of the day and be free to take the pet to many different environments, which may typically be busy and tough.

They may even want a securely fenced backyard. Fundamental gear, veterinary and feeding bills shall be coated by Information Canine. Anybody can discover out extra by visiting

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