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Debbie Flint

My Charity

My Charity (63)

A Word About my Charity – Medical Detection Dogs.

watch this video -

I first found out about Medical Detection Dogs at the Moonwalk charity event in May 2015. I was invited to be an ambassador after raising £5,500 in the summer, and have been working alongside them ever since. Their work involves some incredible life-saving relationships between canine and owner – some of whom have life-threatening conditions like brittle type 1 diabetes, Addison’s disease, POTS, and more. The canine partners alert the owners eg when blood sugar goes too low or too high and the transformation in their lives is incredible.

Other clever cancer detection dogs help with the research being carried out into early prostate cancer detection, which down the line should mean integrating the efficient accuracy of a dog’s nose into regular NHS screening, and the development of an electronic nose to cut waiting times and avoid false positives. Currently a PSA test can be up to 75% false positives and worse, up to a third false negatives. Biopsies are intrusive and stressful and costly. By 2018 MDD hope their studies will be published and the vital next steps can begin.

My work involves continual fund raising. My latest paperback version of my non-fiction work, Till the Fat Lady Slims 3.0 - tips and tales to inspire, is in aid of MDD. Last year's fundraising resulted in me donating enough to be able to name a little MDD trainee puppy – a golden Labrador called Derek! (After my late dad, I thought it was funny! Poor dog.) and another called Lesley after my mum! All the info, pics and videos, are in the archives below.

Do check out more information on the charity on their own website –  

And do donate on our ongong MDD page which will list the events you can attend to see some of these magical animals at work, plus support our endevours to raise funds for them.



It takes bravery to tell all about such a personal subject but that's exactly what one of our patrons, Ian Duncan Smith's lovely wife Betsy, did in the national newspapers this week. She also explains how she was so impressed with the work of MDD research and how it may one day help others int he same position with breast cancer, to be diagnosed earlier.

REad all of Andrew Pierce's article about Betsy Duncan Smith and Medical Detection Dogs in the Daily Mail Tue 15th here.



Some are now sold out! Eeeek! It's getting close to the time when I usually write mine, so maybe get some this year of these beautiful designs and help MDD at the same time! I've ordered some of this one - love it!

click here to get yours on MDD site.


Best wishes


How amazing and how thrilled was I to be asked to help spread the word about this new support system for the bereaved.

The Good Grief Trust has some superb aims, and my pal Linda Magistris, who you may remember from the vintage tea rooms/supper/fete we did in the summer, says the following -

"The Good Grief Trust Fundraising update: We are delighted to say that at 6pm today our National Fundraising Campaign will be going LIVE. If you are able to make a donation, no matter how small and join us in this ambitious project to work towards our goals, we would be very grateful.

This initiative to change the face of bereavement in the UK is on a National scale and it will therefore need significant funding, so we are able to set up this new Charity, ensure it reaches everyone across the whole of the country and we are able to achieve our objectives; These are our main aims;

1) To develop The Good Grief Guide .com - a new fully comprehensive Support Website for the UK.

2) To develop a strategy (i.e. new Bereavement 'Pack') to find every person in the UK, via hospitals, hospices, Police, Funeral Directors, Care Homes & Clergy, who is bereaved and signpost them to targeted help and support as quickly as possible.

3) To work with Health professionals to bring together best practice across the country, sharing successful, innovative projects so that both the health service and the public can benefit from a fresh new approach to bereavement services.

4) To bring all bereavement charities, services and organisations under the one umbrella, for simple, easy access, providing practical help, advice and support in the early days, through to offering hope for the future with a wealth of inspiring ideas, services and ongoing support.

We intend for our virtual hand of friendship to reach those who need it most, whether the loss was a friend, sibling, partner, grandparent or child and no matter when the loss happened, grief is something we take with us for always.
Thank you so much. Linda x

Linda sadly lost her soulmate Graham and found herself bereft of support. She says it made her realise how needed an umbrella group was. Read her story on the Go fund Me page below - where you'll also see her launch video on BBC Breakfast from September 2016.


 The Good Grief Trust was recently launched on BBC Breakfast on Graham's 2nd anniversary - we aim to be the UK's 1st National Charity to bring all bereavement services under the one umbrella.

Over the coming months I will feature updates here on my charity page about the Good Grief Trust too.

Links below to start reading what they say and how you can join in - 


twitter - @goodgrieftrust

Go Fund Me page - and Linda's video from TV appeal Sept 2016 -

Medical Detection Dogs on the BBC 9th October -

#bbclifeline no less! Watch out for fellow ambassador Kate Humble presenting the next charity appeal on 9th October – She’ll be telling the charity’s story, from seven year old Archie, whose dog Domino alerts him to life-threatening changes in his blood sugar levels, to the research work the charity is pioneering into early prostate cancer detection.

 More here.


Xmas Cards!

Here are this year’s Xmas cards – look no further!

And how amazing are these designs? Wonderful Xmas cards which will be a joy to give out to people I still give cards to.


If you’d like to get some, go here, and know that you’ll be supporting my fave amazing charity MDD.

8 September 2016

Pup-date - how's Derek doing?

Written by

And here is Derek's latest summary of how he's been doing! I do love my little sponsor pups - but they're not so little any more!

More about how to sponsor and name a puppy yourself here.



So lovely to get these regular updates about my little sponsor dogs - I raised £2000 to name each. Lesley is named after my mum! x

more about how to name a pup here.


Medical Detection Dogs on This Morning Again! And more shaggy dog stories – amazing ones – including a dog helping alert a little girl’s parents to her illness. So many stories like this out there – must start compiling a list! Anyway Dr Claire Guest, founder of my fave charity Medical Detection Dogs, was at hand to once more lend credibility to the way these clever canines do it. Nice ciip – watch here –

Puppy Party!

What an amazing time we had up at the Medical Detection Dogs HQ this week, including a lovely catch up with Little Derek and Lesley who are not so little any more! They are the fabulous clever canines which I sponsored and named (after my late dad and my mum) – aren’t they growing! Here’s the summary of what happened –

There’s a full round up of what we did on the day of the puppy party on my charity page blog update here. It was a thank you to all the girls who came to help at the recent fund raising events. We had a nice tour, lunch, and a look round the cancer detection research lab, where the little dogs are taught how to sniff out urine samples with cancer in. Hence the need for industrial freezers at minus 80! They cost £5000 each and we’ve managed to raise enough for two so far. They need 8, so if you fancy donating, just let the team know here! Anyway thanks to all my lovely ladies who came to help and also to lovely Arianne Poole who was interested enough to drop by too, and she and the other girls enjoyed watching a live demo of the cancer detection research training, as did Andie (who runs Get Geller Gorgeous group) who is holding one of my favourites, little rescue spaniel Martha. Lovely little Marlow is the new puppy who just arrived – he’s so cuddly and adorable – just like Derek and Lesley were when they were little! Here’s a montage of the day –


The kids who need Medical Alert Dogs were also there – mainly they need the canine companions to help with diabetes, as their own dogs detect when they have high or low blood sugar, since they can’t do it themselves. It is a blessing for the parents of these children to have peace of mind that their child is being monitored by such a clever animal, changing their lives by detecting changes in their breath. Here’s the outdoor ‘musical chairs/detection dogs’ game we played – can you spot who is the big kid with Derek the dog?

Hehe! I gave up half way through though, to allow the kids to win! Had to curtail my competitive instinct tho’ – lol. We also heard from mum Serena and her two boys, Charlie and Steven. Steven’s MDD dog is Molly, who stays by him day and night and prevents him going into a coma and has transformed their lives, especially Serena’s, as she used to be up each night testing him every ninety minutes. Here she talks about how Molly can even detect Steven’s blood sugar levels from the sidelines when he is playing a football match!

Seriously, a lovely day was had by all, and an amazing insight into the charity for which all the hard work is paying off. I love going there – it makes me feel grounded and I’m so proud of my team, and that MDD asked me to be an ambassador for them.

NEWS – we are going to arrange some sort of Open Day and Table Top Sale in November – more news later in the year, watch out for it if you live near or can get to Milton Keynes.

Here’s a reminder of why Medical Detection Dogs’ work is so vital and how it all began, including the story of Daisy and how she told founder Dr Claire Guest that she had cancer and got it treated early.

Do get Claire's book if you can, it's a super buy and a wonderful present for anyone what loves dogs or is interested in success stories around cancer detection and the amazing research they are doing that can change the way the NHS deals with certain screening in the future.

Love this work!





Watch this - the amazing MDD dog Magic and his owner / 'partner' Claire - watch how he alerts her in the middle of the night! This blog on the Cambridge uni site has hit over 1.5m views!

 click here!

This is why I devote my time to fundraising for this amazing charity. If you'd like to donate you can go to Chris Jopp's Just Giving page here

or you can text eg 'DOGS21 £5' to 70070 to donate five pounds. Or find out more here on their website about what you can do to get involved. Like sponsoring a puppy. I named two, after raising enough through my events and contacts. The first one was Derek, now about eight months old I think. And the other is little Lesley who is now not so little! See the updates below (or archive, bottom left) 

Anyway off I popped to the Kent County Show to help out for a few hours both Friday and Saturday and met up with Claire and her diabetes alert MDD dog, Pal. Whilst we were at the fair he alerted her to high or low blood sugars several times - spectators were in awe, quite rightly. It's a spectacular life-changing skill.

Here's the look around the show which I did on Friday, including a chat with Claire about Pal and Medical Detection Dogs. Click here.

Plus I had another TiFFT (try it for the first time club!) with a live interview on BBC Radio Kent - here's a quick chat with Erika North after I'd done it!

AND I touched a baby owl - meet it here. Lovely event.


Chris's page is helping to raise the funds to cover the costs of being at the Kent County Show. Do help! 



Pic of Claire guest and dog MDD report What a fabulous charity this is, courtesy of lovey Dr Claire Guest here, with her dog Daisy. Plus here’s a Cambridge Uni explanation of how lovely dogs like Magic, can help science – as featured on this report. Click here to watch it. (embed if poss hon)

Lesley my little sponsor puppy is not so little! See archives for other updates on lovely little lesley.

The latest - i LOVE HERRRRR!!

Lesley is a delightful, affectionate, happy, confident little dog who has not yet met a person or creature she doesn’t like. She lives with hens, ducks, geese, sheep and a cat and has encountered all sorts of other animals from alpacas to frogs - all fascinating! (A visit from the sheep shearer was especially entertaining). Her best friend is probably the cat, who patiently tolerates her washing his ears but draws the line at games of roughand-tumble. Her very first public outing after her vaccinations was to the village pub while on holiday in Cornwall where she brought everything to a halt while everyone including the barman made a huge fuss of her. Nothing seems to bother her in terms of loud noises or strange-looking things, she takes it all in her stride. She is intelligent and quick to learn new commands and is eager to please. If anything, her enthusiasm to meet people and other dogs needs a little more control but she is gradually learning that not everyone is as keen as she is to jump about and play. Lesley has visited lots of different places including shops, railway stations, farms & pubs and has enjoyed a bus ride and a wonderful day on a canal boat. We plan to take her to a number of country shows over the summer. Her favourite toy is undoubtedly a tuggy and she greatly enjoys taking all her bedding and toys out of her sleeping crate and distributing them around the house for us to trip over. Thus far - touch wood - she hasn’t really done anything especially naughty or destructive aside from a little bit of unauthorised digging in the garden. Lesley is the second Medical Detection Dogs puppy we have had after a sprocker (Alan) last year who we grew very fond of and it will be a real wrench when Lesley eventually has to leave us but whoever is lucky enough to become her ‘client’ will be fortunate indeed.

jUNE 2016.




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