Monday, 17 January 2022

Dog care business to expand

A DOG day care centre set up in memory of a 13-year-old boy who died of cancer is doing so well that a second one is to open.

Charlie’s Dog Place in Emmer Green is named after Charlie Ilsley, who died in December after losing a long fight against cancer.

It opened in June at his family’s home in Buckingham Drive and offers day care, boarding and a dog-walking service.

Charlie’s mother Toni and sister Jess run the business, which was created by converting the garage, but their licence agreement with Reading Borough Council means they can only look after six dogs at once.

Now Mrs Ilsley is taking over Doggy Day Care in Kennylands Road, Sonning Common, from tomorrow (Saturday).

She said: “I am taking over as Charlie’s Place has become so popular and I’m having to turn people away every day and that feels wrong. Charlie would have absolutely loved it and he would definitely have wanted to work alongside me looking after all these dogs.

“We are going into Doggy Day Care and doing some improvements over the next couple of weeks to turn it into Charlie’s Place, a home environment for happy doggies to enjoy.

“I’m also training to be a dog trainer so that we can offer dog one-to-one training as well as introducing socialising afternoons where you can come along for a coffee with your dog.”

Charlie, a pupil at Highdown School in Emmer Green, had fought cancer since 2015 when he was diagnosed with a brain tumour and was twice given the all-clear after treatment.

He had two dogs, Ernie, a shih tzu bichon frise cross, and Eric, a lhasa apso.

While he was in Mexico for his cancer treatment, the week before he died, he and his family stayed at a ranch that had rescued a dog. He told his family that he wanted to work with dogs when he was older.

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