My Pup – 6 Months Old

My Basileas Mini American Shepherd (also known as Mini Aussie) puppy Buzz, has reached 6 months of age!  Well where did that time go?  It only seems a moment ago that I picked him up from his breeder Fran. I can’t thank Fran enough for giving me such a good natured puppy and have been watching the progress of his siblings and they are all very good natured well balanced dogs.

I collected him on the 5th October and he settled in really quickly… he house trained really well and getting up a few times in the night to let him out paid off.  It’s worth the initial pain for the gain of having a dog that knows where toileting is supposed to be done.


The first thing he had to overcome was the big bad wolf… my other dog Maya who was still missing her friend Flynn, who we sadly had to have put to sleep in the August. She has never been a fan of puppies and so having one in her home was not easy to swallow! Especially such a happy licky one! Sharing toys was not something she was keen to do but Buzz was not put off by her faces and growls!


Life was all about playing and sleeping, sleeping and playing. Chewing and sleeping, sleeping and chewing!


He spent some time being carried around in a rucksack until he had completed all his vaccinations. A great was for a puppy to get to know his surroundings and meet people, other dogs, traffic, horses, tractors etc.  Plenty of cuddles and bonding with me too of course and he just loves my boys.

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Excuse the bad hair day here!






Once we were on the ground there was no stopping him, lots of places to explore, even a couple of trips to the beach! We started puppy obedience and socialisation classes as soon as he could and woud alway recommend people do this with new pups. We have now completed our 8 week course but still continue to go and he has progressed into the next class up.


We had our First Xmas and our first encounter with snow. Apparently its good to eat! We are are looking forward to lots of fun in the summer training for agility with our trainer from Positive Dog Training – Jo Fraser. Buzz will come along with Maya to competitions but wont be able to compete until he is at least 18 months old. Buzz has already started learning the basics with Jo but its all fun games and tuggies at this point but he is showing promise for the future. He has also learnt a lot of tricks but we will leave that for another post!


It has been such fun watching him develop, training him and seeing him change. I am looking forward to doing much more with him as he gets older. The images were taken at 2 months, 3 months, 4 months and the largest picture is 6 months.


To celebrate his half year birthday we went in the studio today to do his offical portrait… He loves going in there to play and see what mischief he can get up to. Thankfully as we do more training the obedience improves and each session is easier to manage! Thanks for reading the post.



Highly Commended Images

The Societies, run a mothly image competition which photographers from all over the world enter trying to get the highest Gold Award. These images are then put forward for consideration for Photogapher of the Year, where the winners are announced at the European Photographic Convention held in London in January.

You are permitted to enter one image per category each month.

January 2015 entries have been judged and I gained Highly Commended for two images. These images will be re-reviewed at the end of the year but further judges an may be upgraded to Gold.

The first image was in the Pet Portrait Category.


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The second image was in the Wedding Photojournalistic category. This is the first time I have entered this category so was pleased with the result.

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To celebrate success in these competitions I have decided that for  my 2015 entries I will provide my clients with a Complimentary Mounted Print at 8″x6″ or 9″x6″ for any images that gain a Highly Commended and a 12″x8″ or 10″x 8″ mounted print for those that get awarded Gold.  A small thank you for allowing me to use the image.

My Pup….

I surprised myself when I saw I had not done a blog relating to my new pup and model! How could that have happened? It’s not as if I am short of a photograph or two of him!

So here I am introducing Buzz. Born in September 2014 and now nearly 6 months old.  Can you guess what breed he is? He looks so much more grown up now than he does here but you will have to wait to see how handsome he is now in another post!


Mel Taylor Photography article in Local Press

Article in the Papers ref – Mel Taylor Photography

Click on Link below to read the full article.

A Portrait of my dog….

I have always been in love with this coat colouring and Collies as a breed. My first ever puppy, Tag was a Blue Merle Collie, a very sweet boy, followed me around like a Lamb, cried like a baby at night but contracted Parvovirus and sadly died 11 days after I had got him. The friend who I had got him from very kindly gave me his Mum as she was no longer being worked at the farm. Blue, surprise, surprise, another Blue Merle. She was a darling. Could not have asked for a sweeter, more obedient companion. She lived a great life and holds a very firm place in my heart.

Did you know that Merle is a pattern in a dogs coat, though is commonly incorrectly referred to as a colour.  The merle gene creates mottled patches of color in a solid piebald coat, blue or odd coloured eyes, and can affect skin pigment as well.

I now have another Blue Merle. Maya. She was 5 yrs this month. It seems ages ago that she was just a little pup. I wanted another Collie to do Agility with and the same friend I got Blue from had their bitch in pup to the Blue Merle dog they had. Working sheep dogs. That was it… I wanted on… but it had to be a girl and it had to be a Blue Merle… luckily on the 11th January 2009, Maya was born and two days later I was across to see her. There were no hard decisions. She was the only Blue girl.

Blue Merle Puppy

There was no going back. I fell in love and she was mine. The following weeks passed slowly but we had regular visits to watch her grow. She got nicknamed Stumpy as she had a very short tail and was rather plumb to say the least.

Blue Merle Collie PuppyI took her home at 7 weeks olds and she was greeted by the Big Bad Wolf..

Fighting Collie dog and puppy

However, what goes around comes around! She soon learned how to look after herself! She is definitely the top dog in the house now!

Playing Collies

She loves agility more than anything else and we are trained by the wonderful Jo Fraser. We have grown together in over the last three years. We started puppy with training with Jo and so far she has helped us move up to Grade 3, as you can see below she showed an interest in jumping from an early age!


I doubt we will ever join the Elite Competitors who sit at Grade 7, but we will have fun trying. Unfortunately, last season we did very little due to my broken foot in April and Mayas leg injury later in the year. Hopefully we can both gain full fitness and maintain it for the coming season. I would like to climb to at least the next grade in 2014.  The competition is fierce with usually 200-300 dogs per class at Kennel Club events.

For those of you who don’t know what Dog agility is, it is a dog sport in which a handler directs a dog through an obstacle course in a race for both time and accuracy. Dogs run off the lead with no food or toys as incentives, and the handler can not touch neither dog nor obstacles. Consequently the handler’s controls are limited to voice, and various body signals, requiring exceptional training of the animal and coordination of the handler.

This image was taking during a training session. Sadly I have not yet learnt the art of running her in a competition and taking images of us at the same time!

Tyre Jump

Apart from Agility training, we love to walk and look for and photograph wildlife. Maya and her companion Flynn are the subjects of many of my images. I was delighted in 2013 to be shortlisted with an image I had taken of Maya in the Hamdan International Photography Award and I also had my image published in their book,  The Beauty of Light, and displayed at the Royal Geographical Society in London at their exhibition. I also gained two Gold Awards with the Society of Wedding and Portrait Photographers in 2013 with images that I had taken of Maya.

Maya is without doubt my most patient Model, there are not many places that she will not stand, sit or lie down for me and will stay until she is asked to move. Below are two examples location portraits of her.


To celebrate her 5th birthday this week she had a play in the Studio today. I love the Pet Portrait side of my business and offer both location and Studio sessions.

PortraitAlley Dog

Please refer to my website for further details. or call me on 01235 763359 if you are interested in booking a session.