Road Closure – 18th October

Stoner Hill, between Owens Cycles and the top of Ashford Hangers (little Switzerland) will be closed between 0800 and 1600 today (18th October 2021) please see below for alternative route and driving instructions. Please allow an additional 10 minutes to your journey time.

  • From the A3 take the A272 signposted Winchester
  • Drive through Stroud and Langrish
  • As you exit a woodland just beyond Langrish take the turning on the right signposted Froxfield Green
  • As you enter the Hamlet of Froxfield Green take the 90 degree bend to the right around the church
  • Keep going straight ahead on this road (Ridge Top Lane) for 1.8 miles (signposts read “Stoner Hill”)
  • The road will take a sharp bend to the left becoming Stoner Hill Road
  • The Canine Fitness Centre is 0.5 miles further on the right.
  • The signage marking the gateway is obscured from view so be careful not to miss it – if you’ve arrived at the cross-roads you’ve gone too far!

Pricing changes effective from 1st January 2021

We thought that we’d be able to avoid charging VAT until later in the year but we’re a victim of our own success. From January we are going to have to add an extra 20% to all of our charges for HMRC to collect in the form of VAT.

We think this is a little unfair in the current climate so we’re actually only going to increase the price you pay by between just £1 and £7 per session. We’re also launching a recovery fund to help clients without insurance and struggling to pay for the care their dog needs.


Full Consultation

You used to pay £80.00

You now pay £66.67 + VAT (£80.00)

Which is £0.00 difference

Follow Up Physiotherapy

You used to pay £40.00

You now pay £35.00+ VAT (£42.00)

Which is £2.00 difference

Follow Up Hydrotherapy

You used to pay £39.00

You now pay £35.00+ VAT (£42.00)

Which is £3.00 difference

Maintenance Physiotherapy

You used to pay £35.00

You now pay £30.83+ VAT (£37.00)

Which is £2.00 difference

Maintenance Hydrotherapy

You used to pay either £32.50 or £35.00

You now pay £30.83+ VAT (£37.00)

Which is between £2.00 and £4.50 difference

Fun and Fitness Swims

You used to pay £35.00

You now pay £29.17+ VAT (£35.00)

Which is between £0.00 difference


Having benchmarked our fees across Hampshire, Berkshire, Sussex and Surrey and we are pleased to say that we’re still super affordable with an average session fee saving of £15.

There are supplementary charges for additional services which are set out below:

  • Travel for home visits are charged at a rate of £0.45 per mile beyond 10 miles from Petersfield
  • Dogs weighing 45kg or more, or with partial paralysis are charged an additional fee of £10 inc VAT for hydrotherapy sessions to cover additional staff costs
  • Clients can opt to pre-book extra time for their dog at a rate of £10 inc VAT per 15 minute period

Clients can now also benefit from combined Hydrotherapy and Laser therapy session are charged at the hydrotherapy rate plus £15 inc VAT.


We recognise the cost of physiotherapy and hydrotherapy can be prohibitive for some clients, particularly in light of the Coronavirus Pandemic. This is why we’re launching our recovery fund which will help clients to pay for the care their dog needs with small grants of funding towards the session fees. The recovery fund is not funded by other clients but the remainder of the grant funding provided to us by the UK government to help us during our closure.

We do not believe you should have to justify why you need to access this funding; every person is unique and so are their financial circumstances. So, with this in mind, we operate a no questions asked access to our recovery fund so long as the following two conditions apply:

  • Condition 1: The recovery fund is not available to clients claiming fees on insurance as your insurer is paying all the costs and they have plenty of money!
  • Condition 2: Sessions are for the clinical treatment of your dog not for treats or fun and fitness swimming sessions

The funding pot is limited so please only ask to use it if you feel you really need to as it may prevent other’s access. All you need to do when paying is say to your practitioner you’d like to use the Recovery Fund and we’ll then apply a discount of 10% to your session fee.

The funding pot will no longer be accessible from the 5th April 2020 or when there are no further funds available – whichever is sooner.


You can see this all set out in an easier to read format by clicking here.

Webinar | Veterinary Physiological Imaging

Thanks for joining us on the 3rd October to get an introduction to Veterinary Physiological Imaging, also known as Thermal Imaging. We were joined by our very own Tom Worman along with Sophie Gent from SyncThermology to hear more about this sedative free imaging and how it can be rolled out as a service for your practice.

On this page you can:

  • Watch the webinar again (or for the first time if you missed it)
  • Register for your free 1 hour CPD certificate
  • Download the research papers discussed in the webinar.

Webinar Replay


DOWNLOAD RESEARCH PAPERS

There are lots of research papers available with regards to infrared imaging of animals however during this webinar the following paper was highlighted in particular:

REGISTER FOR CPD CERTIFICATE

In all CPD it’s essential that you reflect on what you have learnt and how to put them in practice so please complete the form found here to get your CPD certificate. You should receive your certificate in the post within 7 to 10 working days.


Veterinary Physiological Imaging will be available from November 2019

The service will be available directly from the Canine Fitness Centre or provided either as part of your practice or on behalf of your practice right across central southern England. To find out more please email synccanine@thecaninefitnesscentre.co.uk – we would be delighted to talk to you in more detail about this powerful diagnostic tool.

Canine Massage Workshop Announced

We’ve just announced our first training session and it’s limited to just 8 places – a Canine Massage Workshop!

This fantastic workshop will cover everything you need to know to feel confident to complete a full body massage on your dog to promote relaxation and bonding.

Regular home massage has been scientifically proven to help alleviate anxiety, prevent injury and is often used in the management of medical conditions such as arthritis in the older patient.

In this interactive workshop you will learn the art, skills and benefits of massaging your dog with our highly experienced and qualified veterinary physiotherapist, Leanne Turner.

There are just 8 places on this workshop to ensure plenty of space between animals and guided practical sessions.

Dog Guidelines:

Please note that 50% of this workshop is theory and 50% practical. So it is suitable for quiet dogs who do not bark and who are very comfortable being in close proximity to other human and dog company. Only one dog per person.

Theoretical areas covered include:

  • Anatomy of a dog
  • The benefits of massage and the effects on body systems
  • Signs of muscular injury, pain and discomfort

Practical areas include:

  • A guided session where you will learn to massage your own dog
  • A certificate for completing your dog massage workshop

Reserve your place now

Support our secure field plans

If you have been following our journey you’ll know that we’ve been planning to open an amazing secure dog exercise field in the heart of the South Downs. We believe our plans for our paddock will ensure we become host to one of the leading outdoor spaces for canine enrichment in the region.

Our secure site plans

Next to our centre is a 1 acre paddock which has been left to become an unruly meadow. It’s our plan to bring this back to life and serve the canine community with more than just a field to be let loose in:

  • A drive in and secure site where dogs can behave naturally – they can run, jump and dig freely
  • A 120ft x 120ft agility arena and working gun dog scurry training ground
  • A sensory area full of long grass, natural planting and enriching activities for young and geriatric dogs
  • A place where dogs undertaking rehabilitation programmes can safely undertake controlled exercise
  • Adventurous play areas to safely and securely climb, roll, jump, run, and be enriched
  • A privately bookable space for family dogs, social groups and training groups

For many animals this kind of exercise, stimulation and enrichment is not possible as due to their nature, health or owner abilities. You can find a sneak peak at what we’re planning at: www.caninefitness.co/paddock/

If you love this idea then please click here, search for SDNP/19/02142/FUL and comment in support!

We ask that you only comment if you live with 20 miles of Petersfield to ensure credibility of respondents | Comment by the 7th July


Doing this the right way

Since the start of our business, we’ve made the conscious decision to do the right thing, whether that’s choosing our marketing locations to avoid poaching clients from other centres or ensuring we have planning permission for our activities when no other dog park in the region has done so. Some call us crazy but we believe this is the right thing to do.

We submitted our application to the South Downs National Park authority on Friday 3rd May and we’re super excited that we have support from:

  • Hampshire County Council Highways Officer
  • Hampshire County Council Senior Ecologist
  • East Hampshire District Council Drainage Officer
  • East Hampshire District Council Principle Conservation Officer

A glitch in our journey

Unfortunately, the Froxfield and Privett Parish Council have made some assumptions which have lead to them objecting to the application. Their objection is primarily two-fold:

  1. The creation of a small hard standing to avoid cars bedding in during winter months is Urban Sprawl
  2. Speculation on behalf of our neighbours that dogs could be a nuisance

We hold hope that the East Hampshire District Council planning officer will take an objective approach to their decision making however the parish council have made some odd (in our opinion) recommendations of conditions which unless addressed would render significant problems for field users.

Briefly, we’ll address each of those points however:

Urban Sprawl

The spread of an Urban area into the Country Side

Collins english dictionary

The setting of some crushed stone, in keeping with that of countryside tracks, and used to prevent cars from being stuck in the mud during winter months, cannot be called Urban Sprawl so we are at a bit of a loss on this comment. We think what they mean by this is “first a carpark, next a warehouse” so they are pre-emptively assuming our landlords may build on the site not knowing that this wouldn’t be possible as there are significant amenities and soak-away structures under the field serving the business park we occupy.

The parish council call into question alignment to South Downs National Park Authority policy, although we read the policy and definitely comply:

  • The proposal is informed by the landscape character and is reflective of the landscape
  • Supported by the Conservation and Ecology Officers
  • Safeguards the paddock from physical development
  • Does not lie within a designed landscape
  • Does not impact the identity or integrity of settlements and the land lying between them

The parish council have failed to consider National Park policies CP6 and CP19 which favour applications such as this as they are focussed on promoting rural enterprise provided that they do not harm the character of the site or its surrounding areas. These policies go as far as recommending developments are permitted for:

  • Farm Diversification – We’re based on an ex-poultry farm diversifying into a business park
  • Country Pursuits – Exercising a dog is definitely one of these
  • For local people – Our catchment area is just 25 miles which is definitely local

Nuisance to neighbours

Remember what we said about doing things right, well here is an example of just deeply we’ve considered this proposal. We wanted to think about the noises of dogs barking and how this might affect the local residential and commercial neighbours. So rather than ignore it we undertook noise assessments. Here’s what we found should a dog bark:

  • Our nearest neighbour would hear the dog bark at between 5 and 10 dB less than minimum standard
  • Crows roosting in the nearby tree line were louder than a dog bark
  • Nearby horses, sheep, lorries and farm vehicles all have the potential to be louder than dogs

Given the parish council have notably deemed this research and survey as “appropriate” and offer no counter evidence or research we thought we’d ask our neighbours what they thought. They were all sent a letter and some of them we even visited in person – have any of them demonstrated any concerns? Nope none at all.

That leads us to then consider the parish’s view that the proposed hours are excessive.

To consider this you need to know that we are part of a business park including light industrial and manufacturing businesses, and as far as we know this business park has no covenants controlling hours of operation except for the Canine Fitness Centre. The centre is limited to 2,600 hours per year operations and we’ve proposed that the paddock is available for 2,500 hours per year.

Now, reflect on that. Less hours, less dogs to be ‘a nuisance’, uncontrolled industrial processes but a paddock previously occupied by horses to be used by dogs is to be considered excessive? This doesn’t stack up.

Full disclosure: You can read the full response from the Parish Council on the South Downs National Park website at http://planningpublicaccess.southdowns.gov.uk and searching SDNP/19/02142/FUL


Conditional Recommendations

As you can see, the parish council have made some broad ranging speculations around a secure exercise field, that’s their prerogative, what we do object to is using these assumptions to form conditions that put at risk animal welfare and damage the rural economy.

Some of the conditions we’ve self recommended but below are a couple that stand out as being a concern for us and our clients:

C. That the consent be temporary with a maximum of three years

There’s no significant monetary value in this paddock, it will probably break even with running costs, but it is going to cost in excess of £5,000 to establish. We are honestly doing this to benefit our clients and the local rural communities in need of a secure professional dog training and exercise environment. Any business in these economically unstable times, whether encouraged by planning policy to deliver farm diversification, is not rightly going to put at risk their money when consent could be withdrawn on arbitrary grounds after 3 years – that’s crazy! This is actually counter to Government Guidance, East Hampshire District Council strategy and contrary to the South Downs National Park policy.

D. To control use of the facility by time and day

The parish council want us to NOT use the paddock after 18.00 and be limited to 13.00 on a Saturday. In the winter the 18:00 aspect might be practical due to natural light levels and seasonality however we find this suggestion absolutely terrifying when you think of the summer, in short the parish council want field users to:

  • Only exercise their dog in the hottest period of the day
  • Not be able to access the field after a normal days work
  • Be closed for 75% of the weekend when the site is most needed

There is absolutely no credible justification for this recommendation which could put animals lives at risk if the paddock is the only viable option for exercise for them. There is a high likelihood of owners breaching RSPCA guidance and potentially the Animal Welfare act if we irresponsibly opened at these recommended timings.


If you love our ideas but think these conditions are out of this world thinking then please please click here, search for SDNP/19/02142/FUL and help the planning officer understand the potential risks.

We ask that you only comment if you live with 20 miles of Petersfield to ensure credibility of respondents | Comment by the 7th July


We think dogs deserve better, and we hope that the planning officers on the 9th July will be objective in their decision making, taking onboard all of the comments and not penalise us for getting consent and doing this properly.

We love where we are based and we think this is a high demand facility but would love your support in ensuring East Hampshire District Council planning officers know how supported it is and how crazy the parish council conditions are.


Responses need to be received by the district council no later than the 7th July 2019.