AFTER 25 years working in the NHS, a Corbridge woman has decided it’s time for a career change.

However, Lorraine Hugall is not straying far from her caring roots – but her future charges are likely to be of the four-legged variety.

For Lorraine, who has worked as a nurse, midwife and health visitor throughout her career, has recently launched her own dog walking and pet services business.

“We have quite a collection of animals at home already, but this is a complete diversion from what I’m used to doing,” said Lorraine, who has a pony, chickens, sheep and cats of her own.

The home she shares with partner, David Jessop, is a former farm off Aydon Road and lends itself to her menagerie of animals.

But after working for NHS trusts all over the country, including London, Bath and North Tyneside, Lorraine understands the demands on pet owners far and wide.

“When people are at work or going away, they often find themselves facing a dilemma over pet care,” she said.

“A lot of pets don’t enjoy the kennels experience, so I felt there was a real gap there to provide services in the home.

“It’s something I get a lot of pleasure from and friends and family encouraged me to give it a go.”

Under the banner of Wagtails Tyne Valley, Lorraine is now offering to take care of dog walking, home visits, vet visits and grooming appointments to help ease the burden on busy animal lovers.

She is also keen to stress, it’s not just dogs and cats she caters for.

“I’m quite happy to let chickens in and out, empty cat litter trays and feed orphan lambs,” said Lorraine.

“I can even water plants and open and close curtains while people are away.”

To prepare her for her new departure, Lorraine has already completed a dog behaviour training course, professional diplomas in dog walking and pet sitting, and is a member of the National Association of Registered Pet Sitters (NARPS) UK.

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