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Nico - Rhodesian Ridgeback, Dog (3 Years)  Empty Nico - Rhodesian Ridgeback, Dog (3 Years)

Post  Administrator on Sat Jul 23, 2011 3:18 am

Nico - Rhodesian Ridgeback, Dog (3 Years)  Nico_110 Nico - Rhodesian Ridgeback, Dog (3 Years)  Nico10

Nico is a stunning boy who loves people. He is playful and friendly, he enjoys his walks and walks nicely on the lead most of the time, however he can want to rush at new people to say hello. This is going to be worked on at the kennels. As he is a big powerful boy, we would prefer Nico to go to experienced handlers and to a home with no small children.


Last edited by Jackie on Sun Dec 23, 2012 7:55 am; edited 2 times in total (Reason for editing : updating age :D)

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Nico - Rhodesian Ridgeback, Dog (3 Years)  Empty Size / Breed

Post  gary watts on Sat Aug 13, 2011 2:39 am

I have to say don't be put off by the size or name of this breed affraid . They are very strong, and a dog we would never have looked at ourselves until meeting Simba at FDR. Great with other dogs, enjoys being trained and having lots of fuss. We have had friends round with small children he just wanted to lick them at every opportunity. Someone must want this lovely boy I love you
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Nico - Rhodesian Ridgeback, Dog (3 Years)  Empty Wait for me, Nico!

Post  quirkydreamweaver on Wed Aug 17, 2011 11:03 pm

Well, I really think I want him! I've just phoned and left a message at FDR to ask if I can go and see him, so fingers crossed! I'm very excited, hope to goodness he's still there!Smile

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Nico - Rhodesian Ridgeback, Dog (3 Years)  Empty Nico

Post  quirkydreamweaver on Wed Aug 17, 2011 11:46 pm

Oh no! Huge disappointment - FDR phoned to let me know that someone is going up every day to try and train him as they don't feel they can take him at the moment, but the gentleman apparently seems very determined. Of course I will keep looking every day to see if the word 'rehomed' suddenly appears on his picture. I have asked the lady at FDR to contact me if by any chance it all falls through but feel like this . . . No I really felt like Nico was calling to me. Oh well, you never know!

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Nico - Rhodesian Ridgeback, Dog (3 Years)  Empty Nico

Post  kimmal on Fri Sep 30, 2011 4:50 pm

Nico has been rehomed to a family from Kent....he is going to be trained by a police dog trainer
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Nico - Rhodesian Ridgeback, Dog (3 Years)  Empty Nico's new home

Post  Jackie on Sat Oct 01, 2011 7:04 pm

Hiya, we're the family that have adopted Nico. We've had him three days now, and he's settled in very well. He was a real super star in the long car journey back to Kent, only really getting restless when he sniffed Kentish air for the first time! He's had a couple of strops, partly because he's 2 and partly to try and intimidate us, but we're working through that. When he doesn't get his own way, he literally just throws himself on the floor in a huff! He's stopped mouthing, but we'll still be working with our trainer about it, just to make sure he doesn't start doing that to other people he meets. He's got a lovely, cheeky personality and most of the time he's brilliant.

Already there's been a move from 'i'll take the world on, and it's dog, and i'll win' when Mum and I first met him in the field (Dad had already met him) to a 'yeah, life's not so bad,' and hopefully he'll never have the need to go back to the former. When he's having a strop, he does bark and growl, but there's definately no aggression or nastiness, just him trying to intimidate us and to be top dog, which never lasts long. We've only had him three days so it must be very stressful getting used to a strange house with four strangers, but he's been a lovely boy about it.

He's getting plenty of walks and is now confident enough to leave the room for a while, or let us leave the room without whining, because he knows that we won't disappear - we always come back! He understands basic commands, but has selective hearing, but again we'll be working on this. His hearing seems to be much better when there's food involved! He's quite a scrounger and stares at you the entire time you're eating, then moves on to the next person when they've finished. Then he does the typical Rhodesian Ridgeback trait of crawling slowly towards you as though you some how won't notice a 6 stone dog coming towards you, then giving you his wrinkly, innocent face!

To anyone looking to rehome a Ridgeback, i'd say do your research first. You can't under estimate their power and you can't be rough with them - they need some one firm but kind. They're intelligent, loyal and loving and with the right attitude and training, they'll be your friend for life and it's definately worth the effort.

Anyway, we'll keep you updated with his training. I've attached a photo of Nico in the garden, enjoying the sunshine.




Nico - Rhodesian Ridgeback, Dog (3 Years)  Nico10


Last edited by Ria on Sat Oct 01, 2011 8:37 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Added photograph)
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Nico - Rhodesian Ridgeback, Dog (3 Years)  Empty For every dog ...

Post  Ria on Sat Oct 01, 2011 8:24 pm

.. there's the right home!

I was outside the Ludlow rescue shop one day with one of my fosters, and a lady came up to me and pointed to Nico's photo in the window, and said, "Please, please, please, don't just home that dog to anyone. That dog will need such special attention, and he needs to be with people that understands him and his breed!"

Well, I am so thrilled that Nico has gone to a home that can give him that special attention, and obviously also understands his traits.

Nico is truly beautiful, even if my first meeting with him was him launching himself at me on the other side of his kennel bars!! You could see it was all front, and he stopped when I told him to turn the volume down. He's a lucky boy finding you guys - and all the way from Kent too! Wonderful!!

Please keep us up to date with how he settles in. I have attached the instructions for adding a photo.
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Last edited by Ria on Sat Dec 22, 2012 2:06 am; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : new attachment)
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Nico - Rhodesian Ridgeback, Dog (3 Years)  Empty Re: Nico - Rhodesian Ridgeback, Dog (3 Years)

Post  Jackie on Sat Oct 01, 2011 10:52 pm

Hi Ria.

We're very pleased with how well he's settling in. We've had a Ridgeback before and she was a real sweetheart and so gentle with us. Nico's definately not a spiteful dog, but he doesn't realise his own strength. We've all remembered the strength of their tail hitting your legs!

He's made friends with our neighbour and is happy to lay by my mum's feet while she's talking over the fence. He's still on a lead in the garden, but we will gradually let him off it when we're all confident of the rules. We've had one visitor to the house to look at the car, and Nico did work himself up when Mum went out to them, but this wasn't aggression, just worried about Mum and who these two strangers were. He did calm himself down and after about five minutes of whimpering and pacing, he just lay down at my feet. We're sure that when he's more settled and with a bit of training, he'll take it in his stride. He's met dogwalkers and other dogs away from the house and was completely zen about it so we're sure he'll be fine with visitors coming into our territory in time. We've already got people who're very excited to meet him and when the time is right, we're sure Nico will feel comfortable with it and won't find the experience stressful.

We stopped several times on the way home from picking him for water breaks and for him to stretch his legs, and he was as good as gold with other people and cars walking about. He did try to jump into a lorry that had left it's door open, but that was the only mishap and it was just him investigating. The lorry driver was very good about it, and was very interested in Nico, which just proves what a lovey chap our boy is.

Our phone is constantly ringing with Dad, Stevie (brother) and other relatives all asking how Nico is - Mum and I aren't important any more! All four of us keep referring to him as 'my boy', which he clearly enjoys. We think part of his attitude problem at the rescue centre was just that he has so much love to give and craved attention, but couldn't quite grasp that lunging at people wasn't likely to get him what we wanted, but actually to make them leg it in the opposite direction, so he just got more upset and grumpy.

We'll definately keep you all updated on his progress, and i'm sure he'll love all the fuss he gets when he does something right. He really is like a different dog from the boistrous grouch we initally saw, to the boy that likes to flop out in front of us for maximum attention. We've been advised not to start with our trainer for a few weeks yet, as Nico needs to be confident that this is his forever home and that we are his owners, not just the people that have shared his environment for a few days. When training does start, we'll be having a few one-to-one sessions before joining the group, and the whole family is getting involved.

Already he's proving to be such a rewarding dog and we all agree that picking a rescue dog, and Nico in particular, was the best decision. It's his second chance and we're very grateful that we can be the ones to show him a happy future. Hopefully others will see that big dogs aren't as scary and awful as they're made out to be and are merely misunderstood. When Dad first saw him, he thought Nico would be a lovely boy once he'd had some training and given security and on day three, he's already showing promise of being that lovely boy. xxx
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Nico - Rhodesian Ridgeback, Dog (3 Years)  Empty Nico

Post  quirkydreamweaver on Sun Oct 02, 2011 6:37 pm

It's so lovely to read your story about Nico and how he's settling in with your family. I was really interested in Nico, but when I went up to FDR to see him, he was already being walked every day by a prospective owner, who eventually decided Nico wasn't for him, but hurrah! - seems like he's found the right home Smile As for me, we ended up viewing, falling in love with and re-homing a beautiful German Shepherd (Denzil on this forum) who is an absolute sweetie and we're very happy with him, so all's well that ends well!

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Nico - Rhodesian Ridgeback, Dog (3 Years)  Empty Re: Nico - Rhodesian Ridgeback, Dog (3 Years)

Post  Jackie on Sun Oct 02, 2011 11:01 pm

Aah, that's great news! Nico's been such a bugger today, but he no longer cries when people go to work, so that's progress at least. He's picked up a few naughty habits purely to test our reaction, but aside from that he's shaping up to be a real babe. Hope you and Denzil settle together and have lots of fun. Also, does anybody know how long Nico's been in kennels for? Dad forgot to ask when we collected him. x
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Nico - Rhodesian Ridgeback, Dog (3 Years)  Empty Re: Nico - Rhodesian Ridgeback, Dog (3 Years)

Post  Ria on Mon Oct 03, 2011 11:29 pm

Hi Jackie,

I would have added Nico to the forum as soon as he went on the website, and usually they are posted on the website within a week of arrival, so I would say he was in kennels for around 10 weeks when you picked him up.
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Nico - Rhodesian Ridgeback, Dog (3 Years)  Empty Re: Nico - Rhodesian Ridgeback, Dog (3 Years)

Post  Jackie on Tue Oct 04, 2011 2:18 am

Great, thanks! Nico starts training on the 17th October. We're meeting with the trainer and his dog, so fingers crossed it all works out.
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Nico - Rhodesian Ridgeback, Dog (3 Years)  Empty Re: Nico - Rhodesian Ridgeback, Dog (3 Years)

Post  Skye-maraner on Sat Oct 22, 2011 1:08 am

I was quite emotional watching Nico drive off to Kent with his new family, so of course I am welling up again reading how well he is doing! I loved this big softy and I am so glad that someone else could see past the initial (quite full on!) greeting that he gives. You are completely right that he just can't wait to say hello!

I am over the moon that he is out meeting other dogs, as we were never quite sure how he would react. I will look forward to hearing all about his progress with the trainer. Thank you so much for coming to see this gorgeous boy and choosing to take him home Smile

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Nico - Rhodesian Ridgeback, Dog (3 Years)  Empty Update

Post  Jackie on Sat Oct 22, 2011 5:35 am

We've had Nico nearly a month and he's settling in very well. The initial meeting with the trainer went well - Nico was a little grumpy with Kevin (trainer), but then settled down. Kevin thinks that Nico is definately trainable, it'll just take time, commitment and consistency on our part. He was let off the lead for the first time which he loved, and he had a little ding dong with Kevin's dog, Zeb, but that's purely because Nico lacks social skills - he just doesn't know how to interact.

Kevin has said that Nico will need to interact with dogs like Zeb, which are completely calm but as mentally strong as Nico, as weaker or aggressive dogs just couldn't cope. We've been doing basic training with him at home, and he can now sit, lay down, wait and stay on command, and his recall is very good, but we've just been practicing in the garden. He's walking nicely to heel (sometimes!) but we think he just needs a good run off the lead, but we obviously can't do that yet. We've only had one incident with Nico where there was pure aggression concerning a bone, but we dealt with him calmly and have stopped bones for the time being. The vet believes he may have been teased with bones, so we've given him a dentastik instead and although he was still wary and jumpy, we ignored him until he was ready to come to us. He was also very well behaved with the vet, and she said he was 'gorgeous' and had a 'very sweet little(!) face'. His handsomeness is something that'd been commented on several times and we're pleased that people other than us have realised his potential.

He's still puppyish, but he can also be very soppy. This evening he's been laying infront of the fire with his head on my lap asleep, completely fine with me stroking him whereas before he didn't quite know how to deal with the affection. He's still mouthing but this is very occassional, and apart from that he's been very good. He also met my aunt for the first time and was so good! It was just Dad and I at home with Nico, and Donna (aunt) popped in. There was no aggression on Nico's part, just the urge to say hello, but after literally two minutes of trying to get at her to knock her over with licks, he just lay down in between Dad and I and went to sleep! He even obeyed Donna when she asked him to sit - he's anybody's boy for a food reward!!
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Nico - Rhodesian Ridgeback, Dog (3 Years)  Empty Re: Nico - Rhodesian Ridgeback, Dog (3 Years)

Post  Jackie on Tue Oct 25, 2011 8:03 am

Mum and I took Nico out for a walk on our own tonight and he was very, very good. He sits before we cross the road, and walks along nicely. There was only one incident involving a jogger, and that was only because it was dark and the man appeared around the corner suddenly. The jogger was very good about it and we dealt with Nico quickly and calmly, and he settled down immediately. Dad had arrived home by then and Nico was so excited, he was sniffing around the car with his little Ridgeback bum wiggling as if expecting Dad to just jump out and cuddle him! Nico's just gone off to bed, but first he bumps his nose against you then wanders off. Very cute.
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Nico - Rhodesian Ridgeback, Dog (3 Years)  Empty Re: Nico - Rhodesian Ridgeback, Dog (3 Years)

Post  jesses mum on Tue Oct 25, 2011 11:13 am

It's lovely to read your so very posative reports on Nico..he is a very lucky boy to have found such a wonderful forever family committed to giving him the time & comitment he needs...it certainly sounds as if all your hard work is paying off & you are going to have the most wonderful companion for many years to come. congratulations

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Nico - Rhodesian Ridgeback, Dog (3 Years)  Empty A lesson for all people returning their dogs

Post  Ria on Tue Oct 25, 2011 8:55 pm

Jackie,

I wish that the people who return their dogs without a second thought for what it takes to integrate a new member of the family would take a leaf out of your book. Patience, persistence, guidance and love. There are always ways to work around problems.

Good dog owners like you guys are such a blessing to rescue dogs. Thank you for all your hard work with Nico.

Good mention about the bone issue. Even with the most placid dog, there can be nastiness around bones, particularly if there is the hint that it's going to be taken. With two dogs it's even worse, and I have had the best two dogs in the world that will fight horribly over bones, so the answer is exactly what you have done. Remove the cause of the problem.

Well done to you and your family (and of course Nico!). Keep the updates coming. It's so great to hear about the dogs.
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Nico - Rhodesian Ridgeback, Dog (3 Years)  Empty Little Delinquent

Post  Jackie on Tue Oct 25, 2011 10:14 pm

As I read that, Nico was doing his naughty thing of climbing into the armchair, purely because he felt he wasn't getting enough attention. He tries his puppy dog 'I deserve to be here' face, but he gets off straight away when I get down on the floor and call him. He's such a delinquent, but it's just playful, not him sticking his fingers up at us in a disobedient way. He does it so cheekily as well.

Nico's joining a dog training obedience class on the 5th November which is run by the police dog trainer, so Nico will get a chance to build on his socialisation skills with other dogs and people as well as us learning how to communicate effectively with him. We know it won't be an overnight success, as he's had two years of little socialisation, training or overt affection but we'll deal with that when we come to it.

His soppy side is coming out more and more. Yesterday evening when it was a little chilly, he pulled a blanket out from behind an armchair and over to me and draped it across my knees, then came in for a long cuddle! So from grumpy hooligan from the first day I met him, to a big bundle of soppiness in less than a month. So worth getting up at 5.30am and sitting in long traffic jams on a very, very hot day to collect him.

In response to your post title, I think if Nico had been adopted by someone that didn't understand the Ridgeback breed, he'd have been returned by now. He has a bark at us and paws at the ground as if he's going to launch himself at you, but because we know that unless the triangle of hair at the bottom of his ridge comes up, he's not being aggressive, we don't take any notice and just turn our back on him with arms folded and he shuts up pretty quick. If someone didn't know that, I could definately see why they would be scared. But I agree, sometimes people expect the perfect dog when most of the time, a rescue dog is a diamond in the rough, just waiting for someone to give it the love and patience it needs to shine.

I've attached some pics I took this morning of him, so hopefully you'll be able to see the change in him. I think he looks so different from the picture we first saw of him - Mum said it was his defiance in the pic taken at FDR that made he want him.


Last edited by jackie.cushion on Tue Oct 25, 2011 10:37 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : forgot how to add pics)
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Nico - Rhodesian Ridgeback, Dog (3 Years)  Empty Pics of Nico

Post  Jackie on Tue Oct 25, 2011 11:02 pm

Nico - Rhodesian Ridgeback, Dog (3 Years)  100_1918

Nico - Rhodesian Ridgeback, Dog (3 Years)  100_1919

Nico - Rhodesian Ridgeback, Dog (3 Years)  100_1920
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Post  jesses mum on Wed Oct 26, 2011 1:43 am

You are so right Jackie..he looks much happier & softer in the face & has he grown!! I am sure you will all gain from your training, it was the making of me & Jess & 1 year on I have the most wonderful GSD girl..she is a pure joy to have in our family. Will be thinking of you on the 5th.

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Nico - Rhodesian Ridgeback, Dog (3 Years)  Empty First group training session

Post  Jackie on Tue Nov 08, 2011 2:14 am

On Saturday, Nico had his first group training session with four other dogs. We'd taken him for a long walk to try and burn off excess energy but he was still very excitable when we arrived, and while Kevin (trainer) talked to the owners, Nico barked for fifteen minutes and was thoroughly unimpressed by it all.

Nico was the largest dog there along with a bull mastiff cross, and there was an aggressive greyhound, a nervous collie and a trouble-making Jack Russell, but they all seem nice and the owners were nice as well. Dad was doing the training (mum and I were watching) and there was heel work which he did quite well at, and some sit and stays and recalls. Nico did well, but was distracted by the other dogs, so this Saturday when Mum and I take him, we'll just move further down the field.

All the dogs minus Bobby the greyhound had time off to play together, and yes, Nico did get into several scuffles with Lenny the Bull Mastiff. They were broken up quickly and Kevin thinks they'll need to be kept apart for a while until they both learn some manners. This Saturday, Kevin's retired explosives dog, Zeb a (rescued!!) Springer Spaniel will be in the mix just to keep a lid on things. Zeb is wonderful - he's very calm but if a dog, ie Nico, goes to far he deals with it and then carries on with playing. Nico has a little scar as a souvenier from the last time they met (nothing serious) but hopefully Zeb will show Nico and Lenny how they should behave.

Kevin says Nico's problem is simply that he doesn't have manners and is in no way a bully, which is a relief. He's going to try Nico with a different collar but he definately likes Nico. It's a relief that Kevin's used to big dogs - he used the analogy of Nico being an Essex boy - all loud and in your face, but really, they just want a cuddle! There was some agility in the training session (jumping, going through a tunnel and walking across a bridge) and Nico's little face was very wrinkled with his concentration and he did pretty well, but I doubt we'll be booking him into any agility competitions any time soon!

One last thing; we took him to our local garden centre to get him some treats, and he waited outside with Dad. A man who'd just recently adopted a Lab from a rescue centre immediately came over and was gushing at how beautiful and big Nico was - he was stroking him and making a fuss and Nico loved it!! Was completely fine with it and there was no naughtiness or mouthing, which he does occassionally do, but that's due to a lack of consistency on our part. Anyway, i'll keep you updated. Next training session is just me, Mum and Nico so we'll see how well he does then.
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Post  jesses mum on Tue Nov 08, 2011 2:33 am

That sounds as if it has the makings of a good tale lol...I'm sure the manners bit is right Jess had no socialisation as a pup & is learning the right way to approach playtime, she still gets it wrong occasionally & has a few nicks to show for it...she has a friend Rogue ( Bernease Mountain Dog ) who guards her & the others in class & steps in if things get a little rough!....I'm so glad you are having these lessons you will be amazed how quickly Nico changes with positive training at home between lessons....I bet you were so pleased about the man at the garden centre, it really is a great lift when you see all your efforts are really making a difference.... Happy Nico & happy family ...enjoy next week 1

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Nico - Rhodesian Ridgeback, Dog (3 Years)  Empty Diamond in the rough

Post  Jackie on Tue Nov 08, 2011 8:31 am

Another quick update. I bet the FDR people weren't quite expecting this level of detail from me when they asked to update on Nico, haha!

We (Mum, Dad, Nico and I) took Nico for his evening walk and he was a little bit of a delinquent with pulling on the lead and charging about on the flexi lead. Before that, though, we were working on recall, so picture a big field, and the three of us spaced out at opposite ends of the field, each calling him in a Mickey Mouse voice. We'd been successfully recalling him for about five minutes, when we noticed two other dog walkers. We're still not sure how he is with other dogs. As i've said, he doesn't have manners and he's only ever met them in a controlled environment with help on hand in the shape of Kevin, or with super calm Zeb, so we did panic a bit, but we got him back without any trouble. Nico doesn't have a doggy friend yet, but people seem to be bawled over by his size and beauty, and usually quite interested in him, especially when we tell him he's a rescue.

I'm not entirely sure of Nico's history, but I personally think that coming from a home, to a very stressful situation in kennels for ten weeks, and then to go on a long car journey on the hottest day of the year with us, has been such a shock to his system, that to allow a complete stranger to come up and stroke him and make a fuss just one month later just shows how much potential he has. Yes, he still has problems and he does play up and push his luck, but he's our boy now and it's actually quite difficult to remember what it was like before he arrived!
Jackie
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Post  Phil on Tue Nov 08, 2011 9:02 am

jackie.cushion wrote:Another quick update. I bet the FDR people weren't quite expecting this level of detail from me when they asked to update on Nico, haha!

I think its great that you are giving us all this detail, it makes interesting reading and we can all learn from your experiences.

Please keep the updates coming, I wish more adopters would do this for the dogs they rehome.
Phil
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Post  jesses mum on Tue Nov 08, 2011 10:41 am

Quite agree Phil I love reading about Nico, Denzil & Jazz's (to name three) progress & the efforts their owners are making to integrate them into their homes, these are the lucky dogs...we have all had problems with our pooches over the years & hopefully we can all help each other & learn from these experiences on the forum.

jesses mum
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