The Mentor Dogs
Helen Masters has built up a team of stand-out dogs who are perfect for teaching socialisation and other behaviour issues. They also like to pop up on Nev's social media with their adventures around Kent and beyond.
Reg is a ridgeback and a total clown, as you will see from his photos. He is the best friend of Helen's son, Harry, and they adore each other. Reg's role in the Mentor Team is that of head boy and he commands respect. He is very tolerant and very playful with all dogs but will tell them off if they are rude, but in the right way and is not aggressive.
He is a sensitive boy too, extremely loyal; and loves nothing more than snuggles on the sofa at the end of the work day.
Doris has many nicknames such as Dotty grotty, ginger ninja or snotbags. She is a sweet girl and adores people and kids, However, she is aloof around all other dogs unless she's known them from the word go. Doris is highly intelligent and after taking her to puppy classes to watch and socialise Helen decided to see what she could do, and it turns out all of it! She even did a 'send-away' and a drop from recall without any prior training. Everyone that meets Doris is always blown away by her eyelashes. they once measured 5 inches!!!
After Helen lost her first Mastiff, Boo, she got Mavis (also known as Mav). Mav couldn't be more different from Boo in that she is the ultimate guard dog. Although nowhere near Boo's size (she's a mere 95kgs!) she is a beautiful well-rounded girl. She is extremely obedient, which is almost unheard of in mastiffs, and loves nothing more than having her tummy rubbed!
Mav can run like a gazelle and will quite often pop a jump after the horses! She's had two litters and is the most amazing Mum to her babies.
Butty is a miniature labradoodle and came to Helen initially as she was timid and a bit naughty, but would run away as she used to get very overwhelmed.
Butty has been with Helen from the very start of the business and is now a fantastic dog and very obedient. Butty's main role is coupling training and she is the best dog out of the whole team at this.
Lottie, aka Bitchtits, is a German Shepherd owned by Lady Shelagh Montague-Brown. Helen has trained Lottie since she could fit in her hands. Sometimes you get a bond with a dog that’s extraordinary and you can't explain it; Lottie is one of those dogs.
Its fair to say that since she was 8 weeks old Lottie has been obsessed with Helen, so much so that Lady S cannot say Helen's name in front of her, without her going into full on GSD yodel!
Lady S and Lottie moved near to Helen a few years ago. Helen has to pass their house on the school run. For the first several months every time she drove past, she'd look in the mirror and there would be a German shepherd legging it after her! In the end Lady S had to make sure she was locked inside at 8.30am as she knows the sound of Helen's car!! It still happens on occasions if she forgets and Helen sees the littlest hobo legging it after her! Love her!
Quite often Helen works on the land behind her house, or takes her dogs for a walk through there. Lottie can either smell Helen or hear her two fields away; she looks down and suddenly there’s a GSD by her side, having jumped a 5 bar gate and crossed a country lane to get there! You can't buy that loyalty or bond.
Lottie’s job within the pack is invaluable. If we have wayward dogs that run off or won't come back we send her out and she herds them up back to Helen. If they are really naughty, she’ll bring them back by their scruff. She’s great at teaching recall, dog manners, and most of all cuddling Helen. Helen adores her!
Gloria is one of Mavis' babies from her second litter. She is still learning how to become a Mentor like her Mum! She is the first Brindle that Helen has had. She is very loving and very naughty and has tested Helen like no other!
Boo passed away in July 2014, but has had a massive influence on The Mentor Team as the original leader.
He belonged to Helen and was a 14st English Mastiff with the softest heart. He is why she fell in love with the breed.
Helen had Boo since he was 8 weeks old and he was absolutely pivotal to the business particularly as he never growled, reacted or retaliated to whatever he was faced with. He helped so many nervous aggressive dogs and he left some big (98kg) boots to fill.
Helen used Boo with rescue dogs or dogs with issues, particularly those that had nervous aggression, dog aggression or who generally just didn't know how to be a dog. Boo was Helen's inspiration for putting together a mentor team, and he was a wonderful gentle giant.
Moo was an Irish Terrier and had been with Helen from 10 weeks old. She had also attended Helen's obedience classes. Moo was the boss of the pack. She was an intuitive sweet little girl and mother to Helen's Irish terrier Doris. Moo was wonderful with all the puppies and mothered them. She was phenomenal with nervy timid dogs and dogs that were so shut down from trauma they had no idea what to do. Moo would just lay by them and protect them from the nosey dogs and they would gradually gain confidence.
Moo was very balanced and had none of the terrier tendencies, which most people would associate with the breed. This is because from day one she had been taught what was acceptable behaviour and what wasn't. Helen used Moo a lot in pack work as her recall was fantastic. She had a very playful, friendly yet balanced nature, which was brilliant for bringing nervous and shy dogs out of their shell and getting them to socialise and behave like a dog.
Ollie was a Springer Spaniel and belonged to Graham and Jackie Garrett who own the Westhouse Restaurant in Biddenden. Ollie (affectionately known as (Stormin') Norman to Helen because he once took out Helen's catflap!) was not been without his issues, with a case of separation anxiety and howling when left upstairs.... not great for business as you can imagine! He went through Helen's separation anxiety programme and became part of The Mentoring Team.
Ollie’s role within the Mentoring Team was mainly that of teaching dogs how to explore and use their noses. Ollie was trained to work to the gun and flush things out which is all he did when out walking. He was amazing at scent and even found a lost mobile phone 3 fields away!
Ollie was very non-invasive when he met other dogs and this was particularly helpful with shy dogs, as Ollie's calm approach to friendship drew them out of their shell.
Ollie’s favourite things were being out with the all the dogs, swimming (hilarious to watch as he belly flopped in and then his docked tail acted like a mini propeller), tennis balls and sticks.