Dogs in Christmas outfits

Christmas 2018 opening hours

Our opening hours over Christmas and New Year 2018 are as follows:

  • Monday 24 December – 09.00-14.00
  • Tuesday 25 December – Closed
  • Wednesday 26 December – Closed
  • Thursday 27 December – Closed
  • Friday 28 December – Closed
  • Saturday 29 December – 10.00-14.00
  • Sunday 30 December – 10.00-14.00
  • Monday 31 December – 10.00-14.00
  • Tuesday 1 January – Closed

Normal opening hours resume on Wednesday 2 January (09.00-17.00).

Product of the month: Supa wild bird feeders

We’ve loved seeing so many varieties of wild bird in our garden over the last few weeks with summer finally on its way. From robins (yes, robins are still around in early May!) to goldfinches, and swifts to woodpeckers, we’ve been blessed with visits from lots of our feathered friends.

What’s the secret to our success in attracting these colourful and sweet-sounding birds to our garden? Using good quality feeders and keeping them stocked full of sweet treats and seed varieties that our visitors just love! That’s why we’ve selected Supa wild bird feeders as our May product of the month.

Supa Wild Bird Fat Ball Feeder

What is it?

Supa offers a complete range of wild bird feeders for all varieties of garden visitor and all garden environments. Their feeders are suitable for all types of bird feeds, including peanuts, seeds or fat balls, as well as specialised food such as Niger seed or mealworms. The range varies from value for money basic feeders to premium, high-quality feeders, so there are options to suit all budgets.

The Supa range includes:

  • Plastic peanut or seed feeders offer a cleaner and easier to maintain option for garden birds
  • Easy-fill peanut or seed feeders feature a unique access port in the base to allow the feeder to be filled more easily. The designalso features a secondary metal cage ideal for deterring squirrels from eating the seed or peanuts
  • Wooden peanut or seed feeders for a more natural look
  • Cage peanut or seed feeders help to deter larger birds such as pigeons or doves, as well as squirrels
  • Metal peanut or seed feeders offer a stylish alternative to plastic feeders and a high quality construction at value prices
  • Specialised feeders:
    • Suet block feeders with a base tray to act as an additional feeding station and guard against debris falling to the ground
    • Premium fat ball feeders designed for feeding netted and loose fat balls
    • Standard fat ball feeders that come with a plastic cap to prevent small birds getting trapped
    • Suet pellet plastic feeders designed to allow the birds to feed from the wire mesh section while the large plastic reservoir keeps the food dry, allowing for longer-lasting feeding
    • Mealworm feeders made of plastic and featuring a large base tray that acts as an additional feeding station and caters for birds that prefer a flat feeding surface

Who are Supa?

Supa was started by British Army veteran Reg Hutchinson after the Second World War. The business originally developed from Reg’s Coldwater and Tropical fish hobby and began in 1949 with the manufacture and supply of fish food and accessories. When Reg retired, his son Mike took over and developed the business further, establishing a reputation for efficient product development and providing quality fish supplies, wild bird feeders and accessories. The majority of the firm’s products are manufactured in their factory at Sheffield and Supa has become one of the UK’s leading names in fish and wild bird supplies.

Why do you recommend their products?

  • Supa feeders are long-lasting, hard-wearing and easy to hang from trees, fences, washing lines or hooks
  • They are deGoldfinch on feedersigned to minimise the escape of seed, suet, peanuts and other debris so there’s less mess and they’re less likely to attract unwanted visitors to your garden
  • The Supa range is extensive and caters for all types of wild birds as well as offering a variety of designs to suit different types of garden
  • As much as we love it when the local squirrels pay us a visit, especially when they have youngsters, they do tend to gorge on bird seed or peanuts and scare away the birds. Supa’s range is specially designed to deter squirrels with a caged construction used on many of their products. But squirrel-lovers rejoice – they also offer a range of metal feeders that are suitable for use for feeding our furry friends, so you could always hang an extra one of those out in a different part of the garden!
  • Supa products offer quality and durability at a great price. Their budget option is perfect for bird-lovers who want to hang multiple feeders without breaking the bank. Before you know it you’ll have feeders hanging from every nook and cranny, with wild birds galore seeking out seed in your garden on a daily basis.

To find out more about the Supa range of products, or to see which we have in stock, please check the caged and wild birds section of our website or call us on 01303 813893. You can also pop in to our shop at Potten Farm, Sellindge and view our range. We’re open seven days a week and our opening hours are 9am-5pm Monday to Saturday and 10am-2pm on Sundays.

Lily's Kitchen product range

Product of the month: Lily’s Kitchen dog food

For the first in our new series of product features, we’re sharing more information about one of the great products we stock in our shop – Lily’s Kitchen dog food.

What is it?

Lily’s Kitchen offers a range of wet and dry dog foods, plus a selection of tasty treats that are freshly prepared, include lots of healthy vegetables and minerals and are hypoallergenic. None of their products is based on dried meat or meat meal, which can be hard for dogs to digest.

The Lily’s Kitchen selection includes:

Natural and nutritious tins and trays

Lily's Kitchen Campfire StewA range of complete and balanced wet food recipes that are gently steamed to lock in nutrients from their natural ingredients. They are all gluten-free to avoid bloating (and wind!) and the freshly prepared meat makes the food much easier on your dog’s tummy. Each recipe includes botanicals and herbs to support healthy digestion. Flavours include:

  • Wild campfire stew: made with venison, pheasant and salmon. This recipe is highly recommended for dogs that may be allergic to traditional protein sources (such as chicken or lamb). This one is our personal favourite, as our Saluki Remy absolutely loves the flavour and it has helped to settle down his stomach allergies too!
  • Beef, potato and vegetable dinner: made with 60% beef, plus potatoes, carrots, broccoli, green beans and apples. The recipe is grain free and ideal for dogs that are sensitive to rice or oats.
  • Slow Cooked Lamb Hotpot: Ideal for dogs in need of a little weight-loss as it contains lower levels of fat. It also contains organic apple, organic brown rice, blueberries, pearl barley, broccoli and peas.
  • Fishy Fish Pie with peas: this tempting recipe is completely grain-free and packed full of freshly prepared salmon, herring and turkey, with a mix of market vegetables and botanical herbs for easy digestion. With high omega 3 content, it’s great for keeping your dog’s coat and skin healthy.

Delicious dry foods

Lily's Kitchen Adult VenisonThe crunchier kibble provided in Lily’s Kitchen’s complete dry food supports cleaner teeth, healthy joints and a shiny coat. All of the complete foods that they offer are entirely grain free and feature organic, natural ingredients to ease digestion. Flavours include:

  • Chicken and duck: This recipe is bursting with natural goodness. It features freshly prepared chicken and duck, sweet potatoes, lentils, eggs, chicken gravy, apples, and a host of botanical herbs for easy digestion. It also contains salmon oil, which is a great source of Omega 3 fatty acids to keep your dog’s coat, heart, brain and joints working well.
  • Grass fed lamb: With organic lamb, lentils, sweet potato, peas, spinach and a mix of botanical herbs, this recipe is ideal for dogs who need to lose a few pounds. It is Lily’s Kitchen’s lowest fat dry food recipe and provides all the daily nutrients your dog needs in one dry food.
  • Venison and duck: This grain free recipe uses only freshly prepared venison, duck and salmon, together with carrots, blackberries, cranberries and spinach, making it highly digestible. By providing alternative proteins to the traditional chicken, lamb or beef diets, this recipe is a great choice for dogs with sensitivities or stomach ailments.

Tremendous treats

Lily's Kitchen Cheese and Apple BiscuitsWhether you’re looking for tasty training treats to help with focusing your hound, super food snack bars to supplement your dog’s daily diet, or bedtime snacks to relax your dog into a sound sleep, Lily’s Kitchen’s range of tremendous treats is sure to fit the bill. The range includes:

  • Natural snack bars: Hand-baked and full of healthy super foods, these snack bars come in three varieties – Red berry boost (cranberries, raspberries, Goji berries and rosehips), Sun shiny day (banana, papaya, sunflower seeds and dandelion roots) and Eat your greens (apples, kale, spirulina, wheatgrass and mint).
  • Cheese and apple treats: These bite-sized natural treats are made with fresh organic apples and mature organic farmhouse cheddar cheese. They are low in fat, but tasty and full of healthy ingredients making an ideal day-to-day reward for your dog. (N.B. Contain oats).
  • Bedtime biscuits: Delicious organic treats made with oats, probiotic yoghurt, honey, passion and chamomile flowers. These biscuits are oven-baked, hypoallergenic and wheat-free. With chamomile and passionflowers, they provide soothing ingredients that are ideal for helping your pooch drift off for a good night’s sleep.

Also available from Lily’s Kitchen is a full range of natural, hypoallergenic and organic puppy foods.

Who are Lily’s Kitchen?

Lily’s Kitchen was founded in 2007 by Henrietta Morrison. Her border terrier, Lily, was the inspiration for developing an organic, wholesome pet food that would help to fight the problems she was facing with itchy skin. Henrietta decided to cook all of Lily’s meals from scratch using organic ingredients with high nutritional content and was astounded by the improvement in Lily’s health.

Henrietta’s experience convinced her to launch a pet food business based on the idea of providing natural, organic and nutritious meals based on fresh ingredients.

Read more about Lily’s story at https://www.lilyskitchen.co.uk/lilyland/our-world/about-lilys-kitchen/our-story.html.

 Why do you recommend their products?

  • All of the ingredients in Lily’s Kitchen products are completely natural. They use fresh meat, rather than meat meal, providing a nutritious alternative to traditional kibbles and tinned foods. That means their food looks and smells good to humans too!
  • All of their food is hypoallergenic, making it particularly good for dogs that have sensitive stomachs, allergies or skin problems
  • Rather than sticking to recipes that rely on traditional proteins like chicken, lamb and beef, they offer alternatives such as venison, pheasant and salmon, which are more easily digestible and suitable for dogs who have developed sensitivities to those traditional proteins
  • Each tin or packet of Lily’s Kitchen includes a whole host of natural botanical herbs that are great for your dog’s health. They support digestion, immunity, plus skin, coat and brain health
  • They source their ingredients in an ethical way and all of their packaging is fully recyclable, including their dry food packs. They are currently the only dog food producer to sell dry food in a recyclable container
  • We feed it to our own dogs and can vouch for its nutritious value. The organic, grain-free recipes have helped one of our Saluki’s to recover from sensitive tummy troubles caused by food allergies

P.S. they offer a range of natural cat foods too – if you’d like us to stock this range please let us know as we’d be happy to order it for you!

 If you’d like to find out more about the products offered by Lily’s Kitchen and see which items in their range we have in stock, please check the dog food section of our website. Alternatively, if you’re thinking of switching to Lily’s Kitchen’s products and you’d like some advice, or if you want to talk through your dog’s dietary needs in more detail, why not call us or pop by our shop in Sellindge, near Ashford, Kent, and speak to our knowledgeable and friendly team?

Chicks

Easter Opening Hours 2018

We’ll be working to different opening hours for the coming Easter holiday. Our full Easter week opening hours are as follows:

Monday 26 to Thursday 29 March           OPEN 09.00 to 17.00

Friday 30 March                                              CLOSED

Saturday 31 March                                         OPEN 09.00 to 17.00

Sunday 1 April                                                 CLOSED

Monday 2 April                                                CLOSED

We’ll then re-open on Tuesday 3 April and go back to our normal working hours. As a reminder, these are 09.00 to 17.00 Monday to Saturday and 10.00 to 14.00 on Sundays.

We wish all of our customers a happy Easter Weekend. Don’t eat too many chocolate eggs, and remember no chocolate treats for your doggie – it is poisonous to them, so stick to dog biscuits instead!

Preparing to turnout your horse for the summer

Horse grazing

Photo by Annie Spratt (Unsplash)

Next weekend marks the start of British Summer Time (hurrah!) when the days grow longer and, hopefully, the weather starts to warm up. It’s around this time of the year that we know our horse-loving customers will be thinking about turning their horses out for the summer.

Before you turnout your horse, it’s a good idea to check a few things to make sure your horse is safe, comfortable and stress-free this summer. So we’ve prepared some top tips to remind you of the essential things to think about:

 

 

Check your paddock

It’s particularly important to check that your paddock fence is still fully intact and well maintained, following the tough winter months. Check around the perimeter to make sure your horse stays safe and secure and run a regular weekly visual check so that any damage can be repaired quickly. Make sure you also have a look at the ground and grazing areas to remove any plants that are poisonous to your horse. Poisonous plants and trees include bracken, buttercup, ground ivy, deadly nightshade, foxglove, ragwort, linseed, oak, rhododendron and yew.

Grazing

Introduce grazing slowly to reduce the risk of health problems like colic and laminitis. While your horse will be keen to taste the fresh, lush, new grass in its paddock, overdoing it can cause tummy troubles. Start off slowly by allowing your horse a few hours a day in its paddock for the first few weeks and consider adjusting your horse’s diet to feed a low sugar option.

We have a number of specialist feeds in stock for laminitis-prone ponies and horses that may help with the transition to outdoor grazing during the spring and summer months. Consider using a grazing muzzle if you’re particularly worried about your horse’s pasture intake.

Water

Did you know that grass is roughly 85% water? This helps to keep your horse hydrated during the hotter summer months. But you’ll still need to ensure plenty of fresh water is available to keep your horse refreshed.

Supplements

To keep your horse in tip-top condition you may want to consider supplementing its diet until you’ve fully introduced it to the paddock. Vitamin E helps the immune system and is anti-inflammatory so can also help with digestive function. Check our stock of conditioning supplements or ask one of our team for advice if you’re not sure which supplements are best suited to your horse or pony.

Turnout and Fly Rugs

Most horses and ponies maintain their body temperature well all year-round, but it’s worth considering whether to invest in a turnout or fly rug to protect your horse from the weather and from pesky insects during the summer months.

Turnout rugs can protect your horse from harsh weather conditions such as rain and wind, which, let’s face it, are still likely to be a factor even when spring has sprung! Consider your horse’s grazing conditions, clipping routine, weight, age and exercise level before you invest in a rug and ask our team for advice if you need some help deciding which option is best.

Flies are not only annoying for your horse, but can transmit diseases, so it’s always good to do what you can to keep your horse fly-free. A fly rug or fly mask can give added protection against the buzzing blighters, and adding some garlic powder to your horse’s diet can also act as a good repellent.

Finally, enjoy the long, sunny and dry summer months with your horse or pony. There are few greater pleasures in life than riding out with a happy, healthy horse on a bright morning with your best stable buddies for company.