Because there is life beyond the track



We hope you enjoy reading the volunteers’ descriptions of their walks with the hounds. If you would like to find out more about Rocco please visit our kennels and talk with a member of staff.

The kennels are open daily for hound walking from 11am until 2pm and are located at Burhill Kennels, Turners Lane, Hersham, KT12 4AW.

Rocco had a foster stay for a couple of nights with Tanja and Graham:

Rocco came to stay with us and our two girls for a couple of days and proved to be quite a little gem. We were surprised at how easy he was to look after and how little his visual impairment affects his life in a home.

When we set off from the kennels he was a little hesitant getting into the car, but once lifted into the boot he just lay down and stayed calm for the duration of the journey. After having been lifted back out of the car he just followed our girls up the step and into the house as if he had done this many times before.

I initially hesitated to let him off his lead, worried that he would bump into things in a house he didn’t know, but it turned out that he is quite able to find his way around without difficulty. Once off his lead, he just took his time to wander around and investigated every room in a very quiet, almost methodical way.

I suspect that, at the moment, he still has a very limited level of vision remaining which helps him to avoid obstacles. He noticeably struggled in bright light though and when he went out into the sunny garden, he marched straight into the pond without noticing. Luckily the pond is shallow and the day was hot, so no harm done.

Rocco was very clean in the house and did not show any marking behaviour. He did all he needed to do in the garden or on walks and had no accidents inside. At night he settled down with our girls in the dining room and slept quietly until the morning.

During the day he liked to be with everyone, but he was not clingy. He just enjoyed lying on a comfy mat near to everyone, listening to what was going on or just snoozing the hours away.

He clearly likes his food and ate all his meals without fuss. Oh, and he LOVES cheese!

Outside he liked to walk next to our greyhound girl Carly who set the pace and allowed him to brush up against her when he needed direction. As he can’t see movement in the distance, he does not react to squirrels or cats but instead focusses on the next few steps ahead of him. He is very easy to walk and does not pull at all. He is however quite noise sensitive and sudden, unfamiliar, sounds can make him jump.

Not even 3 years old yet, Rocco is still a youngster and would easily adapt to living in a home. It would not be necessary to make major adjustments for him, just some care and consideration in order to keep him save.

He is a lovely, undemanding and, not to forget, very handsome boy who would thrive in a quiet home. Ideally, he would like to live with another calm and good natured hound who would not mind being used as a guide dog at times.


Rocco has only been at the kennels for a short time but already has a big fan club!

He is just 2 1/2 years old and is almost totally blind although you would never know. He manages very well in the kennels, finding his bed, water bowl and food bowl with no trouble. He walks beautifully on the lead down the lane so we thought we would see how he managed with a trip to the park. Because he is blind he needs to be lifted in and out of the car but as he’s a fairly petite boy that’s not too much of a problem and I managed that on my own.

Once in the car, he settled down for the journey and I didn’t hear a peep from him. He enjoyed being out in the company of the other hounds and, when we found ourselves out at the front, was turning his head to seek them out and was keen to re-join the group. He ignored all the other breeds we met on our walk today – of course he can’t see them but he was sniffing the air as we passed any other dogs so he definitely knew they were there.
He’s a happy lad who greets everyone with a wag of his tail and he had a spring in his step, trotting alongside his new hound friends the whole way.

Rocco would love to find a new home with his kennel mate Daisy (who is equally beautiful and not blind) or another dog. If you would like to find out more about this gorgeous boy please contact Carol Cowie at the kennels.