When Steve Pitron introduced two very different dogs - Suzy and Simba
When Island Records’ Steve Pitron agreed to join me on A DOG’S LIFE I was beyond excited.
Celebrating the fifth anniversary of bringing Suzy into London from Thailand he talks about his journey. How an unlikely situation could have been a disaster and Steve is not one to give up!
As a keen supporter of the dog slot, the Barking Hour on BBC Radio London, Steve was instrumental in the success of what remains the only dedicated slot on the airwaves for dogs and their people.
Steve decided to take on a Shiba Inu seven years ago and named him Simba. Understanding the commitment of a dog, the time had to be right for Steve.
The radio show inspired him to take the plunge. As ever bringing a puppy into your life is a baptism of fire, but the key to success is bring honest about your lifestyle and choosing the right breed for you.
Making arrangements with a support network nothing beat the long-haul weekly puppy training and the commitment that a dog is.
How this changes you as a person, adapting your life for the better. As Steve says: ‘everyone has to put the effort in with dog training, preparing you and your dog for life.”
It was in 2008 Steve went to Thailand for Christmas and remembered that Susy a ‘beach’ dog was around the resort.
In 2010 the annual trip to Thailand took on a twist. Suzy the beach dog was injured, needed eye surgery. Steve offered to pay for her operation to remove her eye as she was in considerable pain.
Having taken the decision that he would bring Suzy a blind beach dog back to London. But first she needed to re-couperate at a rescue before she was flown to the UK.
The situation didn’t go to plan. Suzy escaped hours after her surgery. She was nowhere to be found in the thick jungle.
Steve boarded the plane to head back to the UK. The guilt overwhelmed Steve, the bandage and anesthetic and pain killers had worn off. But as Steve was approaching London, a text message confirmed she had been found and Sabrina went on to recover from her operation.
Steve began a new chapter when Suzy arrived from Thailand. After a difficult 18 months, Simba and Suzy learnt to live together.
Knowing how Simba is so chilled out, he was determined to see the project through that he had started.
Five years ago Suzy was thin and nervous, but taking time to understand how a blind dog thinks and adapts to their environment.
Prioritising Suzy’s socialisation, it took about two years for balance to be restored. Now as the ‘odd couple’ Simba and Suzy rub along.
Steve recounts the impact Suzy has had on so many of his friends not least Mike who went on to set up the dedicated dog sanctuary Bon Jardin Sanctuary
Tune into the episode here