The shadows behind the photos

I have gotten a lot of negative feedback from people over the last 12 months, as I ask for support in the form of sponsorships I get told that I am not able to ask for any support due to the fact that I am living the dream everyone else wishes to live. Well I can promise it’s not all just beautiful landscapes and pretty pictures. 

I have given up my house for a tent,

I have given up my car for a pair of hiking shoes,

I have given up my bed for a blanket on the floor, 

I have given up my family and friends for a community that doesn’t understand me,

I have given up breakfast and lunch many days so I can afford to take my dogs out and have fun,

I have given everything up to live my life,

I made the choice to reach for my dream and I live it.

Is it always easy? No

Can I manage to survive here? I don’t know.

Do I struggle to put food on my plate? Yes.

Do my dogs ever go hungry? No. 

Do they ever stay at home? No. 

Would I change my life? No. 

If I am asking for support, it’s not because I am looking for an easy way out, it’s not because I want you to feel sorry for me. It is purely because I am not able to carry on posting those beautiful photos, it is because I can’t give my dogs the most amazing experiences 

I ask for help because everything I do here I do it to help and change the world for dogs. And I don’t ask them to pay me for that. 


News

We have been struggling lately, we bought a camper about 10 months ago and it has been impossible to have it registered here in Italy, it has drained our money and has stopped us from travelling, I am hoping we manage to fix the problems and push on but it is not easy. 

We did manage to get to Croatia for a few days. It wasn’t really a holiday as we were there for training but the dogs had Fun so I guess it counts. Well here are some pics

1 year and going strong

So it has officially been 1 year that my dogs and I have been travelling. Well I can tell you that it definitely didn’t go the way we planned but if has been perfect, we have had the most amazing times, met the most amazing people and seen the most amazing places. I am thankful for the people who have helped us with our travel and with our necessities. We are not done yet. Unfortunately travelling will still be done on an extremely low budget, but will be following the road that the wind guides us along. I stand here 12 months from the person I was, I can’t believe that that was me. Who I have become and what I have had to do has left me in a state of disbelief. From here we go forward. 

Importance of travel. 

So we all know the saying “travel makes you wise.”

Well why is this? 

I feel it is for a few reasons. The first is that it exposes you to many different cultures and many different traditions and mindsets. This is great for the main reason, you can select what you like and work to avoid what you don’t like. You colour in your likes and dislikes. 

For instance i love Germany for its care and interest in its people, they look after their people. I don’t like it as the people don’t interact with each other easily, they are scared and cold. I love italy as they are passionate and full of life, But the government and the church is killing the people and the earth that they live on.  Now before i experienced either, i loved italy and hated germany. Now i have a colourful reasoning to it. 

The second is your knowledge grows hugely. You meet people that know all sorts of strange things. Travel makes you interested and in return makes you interesting. I have learnt secrets of Sheppards and the ways of the mountains. I also learnt a lot about who i am and who i wish to be.

The third and final thing i will talk about is the confidence it gives you. There is no possibility to fear life when you travel. You need to work through all situations no matter how great your fear is. 

I will add that to do this all alone is key to the effectiveness but any travel is good travel. 

I recently wrote that without travel there is no purpose in life. I will stand by this till someone can give me a better reason.

More on how to move with dogs. 

So on our travels we have experienced a lot of difficulties. The main being the emotional stress on the dogs, but the second being the cost of moving with dogs. We have taken plains, trains, busses, boats and cars. And this is what we went through. 

Firstly planes, this is the hardest part of the travelling process. It causes stress on all parties and holds the most complex systems and well the possibilities of something going wrong is higher then I am comfortable with. Although we were told everything would be smooth and problem free. That it was but my heart stopped for the 20hrs that we were not together. 
It cost us $1500.00 for the tickets and well that was only half of the expense. You still have vet bills and crates to pay for.

Trains. A method I thought would be problem free. Afraid not. Although working much better then this airline business. You keep your dogs with you, huge plus. They do need to be muzzled in most trains, not so bad. You pay 50% of a normal ticket per dog. So this is all looking pretty good. The problem comes when you get on the train. 
Where do I sit? It isn’t easy to find place on trains in peek time, so I suggest you book for when it is not full. Then moving to connecting trains, this becomes difficult. Manipulating your way around full trains, stations you don’t know, in a language you don’t understand, with 2 dogs. Problems. I suggest looking for trips with at least 10-15 minutes layover. We missed trains a lot. 

Busses. For sort distances they are great, 
Usually free for dogs, but muzzles may be needed. Also tend to be quite cramped at times so keep this in mind. 

Boats. Easy, till motion sickness kicks in. We did only take ferries so didn’t encounter many problems and also free for dogs. 
The easiest and simplest way to move though is to rent a car. Long distance it is the cheapest and the dogs are free(don’t tell them you going with dogs). 

P.s. Non of this applies for Switzerland. If on budget, avoid at all costs. 
Oh ya and don’t buy a 30 year old camper, also a bad idea. 

Depression in dogs

So after one month of traveling I started seeing something wrong with my dogs. What it was, was never something I would have expected. 

Depression. Previously I knew they reacted to there environments but didn’t think it would have gone this bad. The whole story of dogs just being ok with you being there is not entirely true. You being there and happy makes it easier for them to adapt but they have their own feelings. 

I ended my plan very early, we left on a 12 month walk through the mountains and well month one was great and then we started to really move. Each night in a different house. Different families and people. This slowly got too much. Altair (my fragile boy) decided this is not making him happy and well being as close as I am to my dogs. I felt what he was going through. 

We took a 200€ emergency train ride back to family in Germany and after 2 days they were happy again. I went to the vet to make sure they have no physical problems or health issues. I was told that my dogs were some of the best kept and healthiest they have seen coming in. 

Getting home I wanted to get to the bottom of what the cause of this depression. 

Well my intellect of a friend, Google. Said there are many things that cause depression in dogs. Some are; loss of a family member(We have lost our whole family, left them all behind.), change in environment(only travelling every day so this is possible), change in food(it was impossible to find my food here and took 6 months before I go it again.), not having a place or consistency. I stopped here. It was obviously depression, just to have one of these is a possible cause for depression. We have them all. My poor dogs. So we needed to cancel all the plans we made and needed to start a new one. 

We apologized to all the people banking on us doing what we set out to do but for my dogs they all understood. 

Now that we have a home and a car they have come right. It was hard but we are still here in the mountains and still living as far from the society system as possible. 

We are living free. It brings its problems but also its gifts.

Passion

One thing I have noticed since being here in Italy. The wealthy countries know not how to live but merely how to work.

Italy is one of those countries that bring poverty into mind when thought of. This isn’t far from the truth. There is a lot of struggle here Italy. Saying this it has more then most rich countries. It has love, passion, culture, family, art, respect and the list can go on. This I did not see when I was in Switzerland, Germany and even Austria. (Where I stayed in Austria was not bad but not as warm as in Italy.)

Here we have strangers that become family, help is given to everyone, a smile is shared no matter who you are. There is intimacy between strangers that shares many qualities of love. This is not love like the rest of the world talks of love. This is a love of life. There is nothing but life here to live for and to love in. This for me is the reason I wish to stay. This is the element we need to have internationally. 

Germany has everything, yetcomplains about refugees. 

Italy has nothing, yet they share laughs and conversations with refugees.
Time to wake up world and start realizing that to live hating and fearing each other is no way to live but a way to be controlled.