DUDLEY, THE INSTA DOG
and the public.” Although it’s still early in his career, Troy has scored some successes in finding property at crime scenes. There will be more training for him and Jon in dealing with different scenarios, and each year the pair will need to formally renew the licence for their partnership.
Troy lives at home with Jon – and Buddy, of course – and while theirs is a working relationship they are the best of friends.
Affectionately known as ‘Troy the boy’, he is, says Jon, an energetic, hard-working dog, ready for action the minute he’s on duty. “I’d say he’s driven,” laughs Jon. “I love him to bits.”
Dudley is a three-year-old cockapoo, who lives with photographer Sarah Lucy Brown and journalist Craig Robinson in Ipswich. Much photographed (understandably), he’s established himself on Instagram (Dudleyrobinsonbrown) where he has almost 900 followers.
“He’s quite a character,” says Sarah. “There is no doubt that he rules the roost. Since day one, he has always enjoyed a cuddle and is incredibly loving. Mischievous beyond belief, he has a great sense of fun and loves to play.
“Watching him run free in the park with his boundless energy is a real joy, but like Craig and myself he is happiest on the coast. He adores the beach and likes nothing better than taking a dip in the sea. He’s even become accustomed to posing for my photos – so long as there’s a reward of some chicken or sausage at the end of it! We couldn’t imagine our lives without it him – he really is part of the family.”
together and came up with Brainy Dogs.
What makes a Brainy Dog? “Rather than breed, it’s down to temperament and personality,” says Sophie. “Dogs must have good temperaments and be sociable. It’s a case of matching the right dog to the client, taking into account, age, size, trainability, client’s abilities and so on. Our clients have a wide range of abilities and disabilities, with some being wheel chair dependent through to others enjoying walking for hours each day. It is therefore vital we match the clients and dogs for their suitability together.
All training is done in-house helped by volunteers from five different sectors – prisoners, people on probation, people with mental health problems, people with learning disabilities, and children in the care of the Raedwald trust. “There are many benefits to these volunteers from working with the dogs too, so if anyone wants to be involved and they fall in to any of those sectors please let us know,” says Sophie.
Dog lovers can help Headway by being a Brainy Dog boarder, providing a home in the evenings and weekends when a dog is in training at the centre, and occasionally in an emergency if a Headway client is taken ill, for example.
To find out more bout Brainy Dogs and how to have one you can contact Headway either via the website or by phone, or via referrals from a social worker, GP, or other agency. headwaysuffolk.org.uk
“Dogs must have good temperaments and be sociable. It’s a case of matching the right dog to the client,”