A monthly pug gathering is looking to extend its paw to meet new members.
Central Beds Pug Group, founded by Matt and Vicky Ingram, are inviting anyone with pugs or pug crossbreeds to join them on their weekend outings.
The puggy pals have previously met in locations including Jordans Mill, Biggleswade, Ampthill Park, and Priory Country Park, Bedford, allowing owners – and dogs – to make new friends and share a common interest.
Matt, 39, of Lower Stondon, said: “It’s a real pug free-for-all! There’s fun and games and frolics with the dogs.
“When they are off the lead there’s so much going on that they don’t wander off!
“I started the group because I’d heard of ones in Milton Keynes and Hitchin but there was nothing in the middle of the county. The group has given my family a new lease of life”
Matt originally publicised the event on Facebook and the group now have 135 members who attend regularly from all corners of Central Beds.
The last meet up was on October 30 with 40 people and 25 dogs.
Matt said: “For our Hallowe’en walk the dogs were all dressed up – we had pug spiders, ghosts, all sorts.
“We also allow owners to bring their other family dogs too – it’s good for the pugs to socialise with bigger breeds.”
Matt has always had rescue dogs and took in Bugsy, a pug and bulldog crossbreed two years ago, after his owner could no longer look after him.
The Ingram family also have Rey, a female pug they adopted in January from a breeder whom their local vet knew and approved of.
The family felt approval was important, as pugs are prone to spinal, eye and breathing problems.
Matt said: “I respect pedigree organisations but you have to do your research to make sure the dog is not over bred.
“If you are thinking about choosing a pug, you should seek advice from your vet and spend time with the dog before committing to buying.
“Always make sure you have medical insurance in case things do go wrong.”
Luckily, Matt and his wife Vicky, their son Ashton, eight, and Vicky’s son Harrison, 17, are proud owners of two healthy – and very cheeky – dogs.
Matt said: “I’d describe pugs as naughty.
“Rey is very defiant if she does something she’s not supposed to, while the pugs in the group love running around and barging into each other when they play.
“If Bugsy sees a scuffle break-out, being the biggest dog, he will sit on the others until they behave – he spends a lot of time sitting on Rey!”
Membership is free, however, for special events, such as the Christmas party, a minimal charge will be applied to cover the venue cost.
The group’s Christmas party will be held on Sunday, December 18.
For more information, visit: www.cbpugs.com or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Central Beds Pug Group has a Facebook page and YouTube channel. Call: 07599 688180.