Daily Walk With A Difference

Here's something a little bit different from the usual fashion posts! James Wellbeloved was a new brand to our house and it couldn't have been better timing as this post will explain. We all know who the real star of the show is don't we? My little man gets more fan mail (by that I mean Instagram likes) than any outfit, no matter how hard I try.  Lopez Houdini Hart has been my "constant" for nearly six years now, and I love him more than words. He has such a distinct personality; he's a cheeky, boisterous, stubborn little love-bundle. He likes cuddles and attention, but also really likes his daily walks.

As much as having him has been the best decision of my life, sometimes having, or being, a dog in London is a bit tough. We're in Hampstead which as London boroughs go is quite leafy but we'd got into the boring habit of sticking to the same route (past all the smelly "other-dog" corners and a waste bin with a certain je ne sais quoi as Lopez will tell you). Walks on grubby pavements just aren't what either of us want for, so when James Wellbeloved challenged the pair of us to "reconnect with nature" we were pawing at the front door! 

So here we are discovering a new patch a mere 5 minutes from home. Taking this time was just so much more fun than the usual stroll and any dog owner will tell you seeing your pet happy is the most wonderful thing! I'd never had a dog before Lopes, and although they'd been around us growing up, we'd never had them at home as my parents both worked full time in jobs that wouldn't allow for it (my sister and I are about to embark on a campaign to change that... Good luck getting out of that one, Mum). 

Lopez came to me in a very serendipitous way; I knew his mummy as she was owned by some close family friends. As soon as they told me they were going to breed her I knew I'd struggle to say no taking one of the pups. Fast forward a couple of months and her owner called me (when I was in a nightclub toilet, classy) to tell me "my" little man was the only puppy who had survived an arduous labour. She said they wanted to keep him "in the family" so asked if I'd have him. I couldn't say no!

I met him three weeks later (I do have a pic somewhere which I'll dig out for you). He fit into my hand, and promptly peed all over it. It was love at first sight. It was only when he arrived at my flat a couple of months later that it hit me; I owned a dog. Oh my god! 

Although I've been very lucky temperament wise with Lopester Maltese Terriers can be tricky, particularly with their diets. They have extremely sensitive tummies (especially when they eat hairbands and pants out of the washing basket, but we'll save them for another time). Lopez has never been the kind of dog that leaps to remind me it's dinner time, and prefers grazing during the day. If something isn't his kind of thing he'll just leave it, trusting I'll eventually surrender and get the treats out.

When I took him to the vet at the beginning of the year I was really shocked to hear that he was 1kg overweight  and when you're only 4kg, thats quite a lot! Again, as a novice dog owner I was phenomenally embarrassed. I live a very busy life and kind of assumed if I was managing to keep him alive I was doing a good job... The vet told me I needed to find a food he liked, and it needed to be dry as Maltese's teeth don't like wet food (or their breath, my god).

We struggled to find anything. Instagram followers will know we really went through the mill; poor Lopez got a bit blocked up, and then very much not, throughout the process. Campaign or no campaign, James Wellbeloved's stuff has been the first range we've found that ticks all the boxes. Lopez loves it, I love that he's slowly getting into shape, he's got tonnes more energy and for the first time in his life actually seems to be keen on dinner time. He's been on the grain free Turkey and Lamb (and seems to be slightly more keen on the meat over poultry).

I can't tell you how much better I feel, perhaps a bit selfishly when this should be all about Lopez, knowing he is eating something good for him that he likes. We'll be keeping this up way beyond the campaign dates, I'm so glad the blog has led me to finding this for him! For any of you looking for more information, here is the link to James Wellbeloved website. I'll leave you now, as we're off on another walk!

This project was written in collaboration with James Wellbeloved. All text and content my own, without client edit. Photography by Amelia Allen.

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