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Layla the Boxer

One of the family

Adored, and adopted by the entire clan, Boxer Layla has had all the love and support a dog could need to help her overcome some major mishaps

Photography: Olivia Hemingway

Layla really is a collective family dog,’ Georgia Newall says of her eight-year-old Boxer. ‘She belongs as much to my dad, Andrew, as she does to my husband and I.’

‘She’s become a part of all of our lives,’ Andrew agrees. ‘Some of the best times I’ve had have been while out walking her.’

‘She’s a bit like my eldest child,’ Georgia laughs. ‘We got her before my sons were born, and she went through my first pregnancy with me while she was a puppy.’ It was when Georgia was nine months pregnant, however, that Layla started to show signs of a severely upset stomach. Andrew rushed her to the vet, who diagnosed Campylobacteriosis, a bacterial infection relatively common in younger dogs.

‘I was in hospital, having just had my son, when the vet called with the diagnosis,’ Georgia explains. ‘Campylobacteriosis is highly infectious, so we were advised not to have her around my newborn.’ Thankfully, Andrew stepped in, looking after Layla for six months until all signs of the infection had cleared from her system.

‘I don’t know what I would have done without him,’ says Georgia. ‘I was so emotional and hormonal, and I felt like I’d given away my first baby!’

‘It also helped that Petplan made the process so easy,’ Andrew adds. ‘They covered all Layla’s medications and blood tests automatically, which made a stressful period that much more manageable.’

However, as Layla has grown, she’s had a fair few further mishaps – including a badly cut paw pad, some lameness that needed costly x-rays and medication, and a skin condition the vet had to biopsy to diagnose effectively. Most memorable, though, was the time she emerged from a hedge with a scarily swollen face while on a Sunday walk with the family.

‘We had to rush her to an emergency vet,’ Georgia recalls, ‘and later she had to go through a whole range of allergy teststo determine what had caused it. The vet eventually found it was a reaction to wasp stings, so when it happened again we knew what it was – even though it meant a few more emergency visits. We carry an EpiPen for her now, to ensure we can deal swiftly with any reaction.

‘Thankfully, whether big or small, our claims were met smoothly,’ Georgia adds. ‘It’s really helped, as she’s a rather expensive family member...’

‘… But she’s so worth it,’ Andrew finishes.

Petplan paid just over £2,000 in total for Layla’s treatments. Georgia’s insurance premium for Layla is £926.94 a year.

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