Medical Practice visit and dogs

Tuesday May 1st 2018

Christine Grahame MSP in Parliament Main

Penicuik Medical Practice

Following on from my visit to Eastfield Practice I visited the Penicuik Practice this week with my colleague and assistant Councillor Debbie McCall. These visits, to GP practices or factories or schools and so on are an important part of the day job and I never fail to learn something on these visits. This week’s visit was no different and there are now several issues I want to take forward with the Cabinet Secretary for Health. Let me thank here all the GPs, the trainee GPs and the nurse practitioner for their time and input.

Holyrood Dog of the Year

The same day I took part in a light-hearted competition for MSPs and their dogs. I don’t have one/can’t have one and it’s not for the lack of wanting one but my lifestyle when I am out at work all day from at least 8.30 – 6pm makes it impossible. I was therefore provided with the wonderful Chloe, a Pomeranian, and frankly a breed I had not really fancied but my goodness she changed all that.

The Dogs Trust in cahoots with the Kennel Club run the “competition” to highlight the need to care for your dog and to know what you are taking on for its lifetime. Chloe was one of the Dog’s Trust dogs, affectionate and with latent feistiness and a foxy face which was irresistible. Her previous owner was unable to keep her but I am pleased to say she has found a new home with a retired couple whom I know will love her to bits. We came second so she goes to them with a runners-up rosette! Ah but if only I could have kept her!

More doggy stuff

This Friday I launch my own consultation into my proposal for a Bill which I have called “Responsible Dog Ownership”. I intend it to do what it says on the tin/in the title. I hope to better regulate licensed dealers but also to put duties on anyone acquiring a puppy or dog, for example checking out the dealer, seeing the puppy with its mum.

With the increase in on-line sales (Gumtree for example) the life of some puppies has become miserable. They are sold as commodities not sentient beings. A hound is not a handbag. But too many of us buy with our hearts not our head. Now the heart is no bad thing but just as I have had to do, you should consider all the implications and responsibilities of taking on a dog and be hard on yourself.

I would have taken Chloe in a heartbeat but it would have been so unfair to her. I wish her and her new owners well and know they will both benefit from her joining the household. Ach it was hard to let go!

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