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Cat Grooming Tips

Cat Grooming Tips

Grooming is part of a kittens daily routine, helping your cat to look after their coat and helping to control parasites. It’s essential that your cat has a regular grooming and cleaning routine, so check out these handy cat grooming tips.

Start Early:
Get your cat accustomed to being groomed from a very early age. Gradually increase the amount of time you spend grooming your cat until it becomes a part of your cat’s daily routine.

Playing with the Brush:
Like any pet whether its bath time or brushing it’s always a good idea to help your pet relax especially when they aren’t used to it. Let your cat play with comb and brush allowing your cat to get used to them. Stroke your kitten very gently paying particular attention to your cats stomach and hard-to-reach places so she gets more comfortable with being handled.

How to Groom:
Comb gently through her your coat from head to tail, being particularly gentle around the head. Whilst doing this it gives you the opportunity to check the condition of their coat and skin, looking for signs of fleas or other parasites. Then brush the fur to remove any dead hair.

Just like human hair, cats hair is prone to tangles. Use your fingers to tease out tangles before you groom your kitten. Grooming your kitten regularly, should lessen the amount of tangles.  If your cats coat is a bit of a tangled mess, then dip a clean cloth in warm water, squeeze any excess water and use the cloth to wipe her down. Avoid using soap as this will irritate your cats skin.

Bathing your Cat:
Cats have in-built grooming tools in the form of their tongue and teeth, and usually they are fussy about self-cleaning so regular grooming by brushing is usually sufficient. However, there will be times when your feline friend needs a little extra help in the cleaning department – for example when he or she has come into contact with something sticky or smelly, or has become very dirty.

Check Eyes:
After grooming, your your kitten eyes and ears. If you notice your kitten’s eyes looking a little weepy then take a 2 cotton balls ( 1 for each eye) moistened with warm water and clean carefully. Your cat’s eyes should be clear, bright and free of any redness, swelling or discharge. If any of these symptoms are present it could be a sign of infection, in which case you should contact your vet for appropriate treatment.

Healthy Teeth:
Check your kittens mouth regularly for them to get used to it whilst making it more easier when you do need to clean her teeth or give her medicine. Teeth should be clean and free from deposits and gums should be a healthy pink colour. If not then see you vet to seek the right advice and treatment.

Classy Claws:
Your kitten loves to scratch her territory – it’s natural behaviour that helps her hunt and scent-mark. A scratching post will act as a file for her claws, but you’ll need to clip them when she gets a little older. Get her used to the idea by handling her paws from an early age – that way she’ll be more cooperative when she’s an adult.

Coat and Skin:
You can tell a lot about the state of your cat’s health from the condition of their coat and skin. If your cat is engaging in excessive chewing, scratching or licking, it may time for a check up. Stress, parasites, wounds or allergies could all be having an impact on your cat’s health and should be looked into.

As one of the UK’s leading pet grooming supply specialists Animology provide a wide range of cat grooming products ensuring your feline friend stays clean and fresh. Our top pick are there cat wipes which are handy when your cat needs a quick clean and a quick freshen up.

Keeping your Dog Clean without a Bath

Keeping your Dog Clean without a Bath

Most dogs would rather skip bath time and our latest blog provides you with handy tips to keeping your dog clean without a bath.

Pet Wipes:
Handy and portable, these are a must have for any dog owner, especially when taking your dog out.  Dog wipes are specially formulated to be gentle and safe to dogs.  The clean sheet Dog wipes from Animology contains a high performance, super tough, dual sided dog wipe containing an advanced no-rinse shampoo formulation to help keep your dog cleaner and fresher for longer.

Brushing & Grooming:
It’s important to regularly brush your dogs coat with a bit of grooming. The regular upkeep will help reduce the amount of dirt and allergens on your dog’s fluff, which will keep them cleaner overall.  Brushing is synonymous to grooming for them. It removes loose hair, exfoliates skin, removes everyday dirt and allergens, maintains good blood circulation, and helps keep a shiny and beautiful coat.

Dry Shampoo:
Baking soda and cornstarch are great for removing that ‘dog smell’ most pups have. You can massage the powder through your dog’s coat using a towel. They also make commercial dry shampoo for dogs that you can give a try.

Clean your Dog’s bedding!
Their bed, their toys to blankets. Clean them all, it’s as simple as that. Do this and there will be no more wondering why your home has a funky dog smell even if your find yourself cleaning your dog regularly. You will notice how quickly the smell disappears when you simply wash your dog’s stuff.

Freshening Sprays:
When doing your regular brushing, using doggy sprays can help freshen up their smell and detangle their coats, whilst keeping your dog clean without a bath.

Keeping your Dog Clean

Keeping your Dog Clean

Keeping your dog clean can be a chore, as dogs seem to find  the muddiest of puddles to splash about, so it’s no surprise to how dirty they can get. So to keep your dog well groomed and clean check out our handy tips below:

Bath Time:

The most important thing is to get your dog used to having a bath as early as you can. Some dogs will love a good bath, and some will hate it. Let your dog play with their favourite toys and then bring them into the bath where hopefully they will behave.
Provide little treats along the way to give your dog reassurance he/she is doing well. Water should be lukewarm and no hotter and a rubber mat ill ensure your dog feels confident on his feet whilst most importantly preventing your dog from slipping.

How to Bath your Dog:

Your dog will frequently need a good wash dependent on how dirty they are especially after walkies and is great for keeping your dogs coat nice and clean. Before your start have several super-absorbent towels and a good quality dog shampoo and brush your dogs coat to remove all those loose hair and tangles.

  1. Test the temperature of the water (ideal temp should be lukewarm) then entice your dog into the bath with a treat
  2. Cover your dog in water, by using the shower head or jug. Be prepared to get wet, as your dog will 100% attempt to shake their coat dry.
  3. Once your dog is wet from head to tail, begin to apply the shampoo into a good lather into your dogs coat. Avoid getting shampoo near eyes, eyes and mouth.
  4. Rinse coat thoroughly ensuring not to leave any shampoo in the coat as it may cause irritation.
  5. Dry your dog with either a hair dryer on a low temperature setting or a super absorbent towel.

Pamper your Dog:

Grooming is a great way to show your dog you love them. We all know dogs love attention so pamper your dog. Brushing your dog helps to keep your dogs coat and skin healthy by removing dead hair and spreading natural oils, whilst caring for your dogs teeth, ears and eyes reducing the risk of your dog developing diseases. Look out for any lumps, bumps, fleas and ticks when grooming your dog.
It’s always best practice to ensure you have the right grooming equipment for your dog’s coat type. There are various types of brushes you can use:

Combes or Rakes – Ideally used to penetrate thick hair to detangle and remove the undercoat. When looking for a suitable comb make sure that the combs teeth are roughly the same length as your dog’s coat to ensure that the comb reaches the undercoat but not enough to irritate the skin.

De-Shedder Tool: When your dog is moulting this removes the dead undercoat

Slicker Brush – Used on dogs with medium to long haired coats, this brush has lots of fine, short wires close to each other on a flat surface. They are great at removing dead hair and stimulating the skin and coat.

Bristle Brush – Used to remove dirt and debris from coats of short and smooth haired dogs.

Pinhead Brushes – Suitable for brushing out tangles on long-haired, curly haired dogs with undercoats.

Grooming Mitt – Used on short haired dogs to remove dead hairs, massage and stimulate the skin.



How often should my Boiler be Serviced

How often should my Boiler be Serviced

Knowing when to get your boiler serviced can be tough, especially if you think your boiler is in full working condition you may be tempted to avoid getting it serviced, so to help you identify how often should my boiler be serviced read on:

Why Service your Boiler
More reliable and efficient then ever before, don’t think that modern boilers are immune to wear and tear and breakdowns. Aside from complete shutdowns, there can be other problems with your boiler that won’t be as obvious but could still cost you money by operating at reduced efficiency. Though not a regular occurrence, gas leaks can be extremely dangerous, potentially resulting in a release of carbon monoxide. Ideally you should sure your boiler is serviced every year, to keep your boiler in good working condition and limit wear over time. For many new boilers, warranties require that your boiler should be serviced annually to avoid the warranty becoming void.

Also, not getting your boiler serviced annually can potentially leave your home insurance invalid should you encounter a boiler problem.  Given the importance of boilers especially through the colder months when your using your radiators it’s very important to ensure you get your boilers professionally serviced on a regular basis. Losing your boiler can cause a great deal of disruption; losing your hot water and heating can be a massive inconvenience.

Service when you move house?
If your moving in to a new home, then it is best to get your boiler serviced, as you wont necessarily know when the boiler was last serviced. So to ensure that there are no unwanted problems left behind by the previous owner get it booked in for a service.

Finding an Engineer
You can easily find a qualified professional by consulting the gas safe register. A Gas Safe engineer will issue a certificate when the work is done, especially important for landlords, who are required by law to have one as proof that their boilers are being maintained. Also check your log book or front of the boiler as its practice for the original installer to leave their details.

When’s the best time to get a boiler serviced?
Look to get your boiler serviced in the summer months as registered engineers are likely to be less busy and if any issues are identified you won’t be left cold while it’s fixed. So plan ahead and get your boiler serviced so that it is ready to handle everything our UK winters has to throw at it.

What will an Engineer Do?
A gas safe engineer, will perform several important tests during their visit. Most importantly, they will check for any traces of carbon monoxide in the air; carbon monoxide is invisible to the naked eye and odorless and even brief exposure can have a severely negative impact on the body. Your engineer will likely recommend to install a carbon monoxide detector if you don’t already have one.

Don’t wait till you a have problem!
If your boiler seems to be working well, it can be tempting to avoid servicing, thinking there’s no benefit. Getting it serviced will likely reduce any costly bills if your boiler was to break meaning higher repair costs than an annual service. So long as you ensure your boiler is serviced manually, you’ll be protecting any product warranties and your home insurance.

So don’t wait until winter to get your boiler serviced by one of the UK’s leading heating, plumbing and electricals servive p APG domestics.

Tips to Maintaining your Dogs Hygiene

Tips to Maintaining your Dogs Hygiene

Dogs are not expected to be clean, but there’s more to dog hygiene than just the occasional bath. From dog beds to clean teeth to brush, there’s plenty to keep you going to make sure you maintain some good basic hygiene for your pup.

Bath Time
Quite commonly most pet owners will over-bathe their dogs as they won’t want to have a dirty dog around the house lying on your sofa or coming into bed with you. It’s important to note that how often you wash your dog depends on a number of factors including how long they spend outside rolling around in things they shouldn’t. If your using a gentle dog friendly shampoo then a dog can be bathed weekly.

Brushing your Dogs teeth
One of the most common diseases for dogs is formed in the gums caused by a build up of tartar building up on the teeth. Dental disease can have dire side affects if not treated, including bacterial infections that could be lethal. The easiest way to avoid this is to ensure that every time you brush your teeth, you brush your dog’s teeth-every day.

Although veterinarians recommend using a toothbrush designed for dogs when brushing your pup’s teeth, a quick way to clean their teeth daily is to use your fingers. But make sure you start training your dog on teeth brushing when they’re young. They’re are less likely to nibble on your fingers that way.

Cleaning your Dogs bed
When it comes to your dog, your dogs bed is one of the dirtiest things in your home. A haven for fleas, ticks, germs and allergens. What’s the point in bathing your dog if your dogs bed is dirty. Our top tip when buying a dogs bed is, it’s best to purchase a dog bed with a removable fabric cover that can be easily washed by throwing into a washing machine. The Crash Bed dog beds from Animology are heavy duty dog beds with wipe clean removable covers. If you have a dog that sheds, the dog bed should be vacuumed at least once a week. Your dog  might not like cleanliness, but your house will thank you for it.

Cleaning your Dog’s toys
We all love treating our pets to new toys and the cleanliness of your dog’s toys is especially important as these often go in your dog’s mouth. Using disinfectants or cleaning sprays could potentially harm or poison your dog. Just remember to wash your dogs toys at least once a month for safe playing. You can run them through a hot cycle with no detergent (just check they are machine washable first) The heat and water pressure should kill most germs whilst removing dirt and grime.

Dogs Paws
Your dog’s paws carry whatever they step in, that includes pesticides, pollens, molds, to dust mites. As it’ advised not to bathe your dog every day, it’s a good idea to clean their paws at least once a month either with a paw soak, or a rub down with a wet cloth.  If you have a particularly  hairy dog, don’t forget to trim and brush the hairs in-between their toes. This will benefit your dog by reducing the amount of paw chewing and licking they do.

Cleaning your dogs, collar, leash or harness
Any dog owner will know a collar, after a while can start to smell funky. After bathing your dog and cleaning their bed, it doesn’t make any sense to slap a dirty collar on them. Collars don’t need to be washed that much, but as soon as it starts to smell or become brown/black, it’s a good idea to toss it in the washing machine with some pet-friendly detergent or you can simply add a couple squirts of dog shampoo in bowl of hot water, leaving to soak for roughly 15 minutes. Rub the collar against itself to extract any ground in dirt then rinse.

How to care for your Cat – Hygiene Tips

How to care for your Cat – Hygiene Tips

Whether you’ve recently adopted your cat or you’d like to learn more about caring for them we have some great tips when it comes to cat hygiene.

Exploring, sleeping, eating and being groomed, yes we’re talking about your feline friends cats.. when it come to maintaining their own hygiene cats have a tendency to keep themselves and other cats clean by licking. Referred to as ‘allogrooming” this is a social activity which strengthens the bond between littermates. The objective of licking is that their rough tongues act like hairbrushes, combing out any dirt, fleas or loose hair from their coats to keep it looking purfect.

However, you can rely on your cats own hygiene as there are sever factors that can affect your cats health. So to avoid any catastrophes and nasty infections or other health problems, we have shared some great tips to follow for you to maintain a healthy, happy cat.

Fleas and worms are two extremely common irritants for cats, but unfortunately there are plenty of treatments available to get rid of them.  As well as treating your furry friends for these parasite, its important to keep upto date with other routine vaccinations at your local vets. The recommended vaccinations and boosters by the cats protection are:

  • Feline infectious enteritis (FIE)
  • Cat ‘flu –
  • Feline leukaemia virus (FeLV)
  • Feline chlamydophilosis

For people with older cats they should be aware of Hyperthyroidism which can kick in from about 12 years of age. The symptoms are increased appetite and weight loss but thankfully it is fairly easy to diagnose.

Oral Hygiene
Keep control of your cats dental hygiene and pay particular attention to any irregular signs such as excessive dribbling, bleeding from the gums or bad breathe. Cats commonly suffer with disorders of the teeth, jaw and mouth and are very good at hiding signs of pain, so it’s vitally important to keep an eye on your cat’s oral health, as its likely to extend and improve the quality of their life.

As your cat gets older, it is even more important to ensure good oral hygiene. Mature cats will need regular check-ups and professional cleaning to avoid being left with decaying teeth which leads to gum disease and other oral infections.

Maintain a healthy coat and skin for your cat with bath time. Every cat is different and not all will be open to bathing, but a gentle massage using specialist shampoo will help to maintain and ensure a healthy coat and skin. You’ll first need to brush out any excess hair with a soft comb. This is essential as any excess hair your cat will ingest when grooming itself, could lead to digestion issues and unexpected hairballs lurking around your home.

If you want to ensure your cat is kept clean and healthy then be sure to check out Animology’s range of cat hygiene products which includes, shampoos, sprays and wipes

Tips for healthy horse tails

Tips for healthy horse tails

If you’re a horse owner, you’ll want to do everything possible to promote a long, healthy, well maintained thick tail. Like your horse’s coat, his tail requires some elbow grease , but of a different kind. To help your horse grow a healthy tail we have put together some top tips.

1. Healthy hair comes from the inside out
No amount of potions and conditioners will improve your horse’s coat, mane and tail if he is not receiving proper nutrition. Healthy hair comes from protein, amino acids and vitamins in quality forage and feed.

2. Use grooming tools
Attempting to use human hair brushes will break the hair and pull it out. Use only wide-toothed combs and dandy brushes on the tail so any grooming tolls that are specially designed for manes and tails.

3.  Brushing
Brushing a  horse’s tail can be controversial,  It’s advised not to brush your horses tail. Although it looks nice when it’s brushed out, if you brush it every day, it will gradually get thinner and the more you brush the more hair you may pull out or break. It takes years to re-grow each long strand of hair that is pulled out.

4. Stimulate growth
To stimulate hair growth, brush the dock of your horse’s tail daily with a dandy brush. These brushes are great for removing dust and debris from your horse’s coat and by brushing teh dock and upper part of the tail bone also increases blood flow, which stimulates growth.

5. Is your horse rubbing its tail?
It’s essential to determine why? There are several reasons why a horse will rub their tail. Parasites like lice and pinworms will cause itching, so make sure your horse is on a regular de-worming program. Insects will also cause itching and some horses are more prone to skin reactions caused by insects. Protect your horse from insects by using insect repellents. Horses will also rub their tails in response to irritations around the sheath and anus area. Consult your veterinarian if you suspect this might be the problem.

6. Keep the horse’s tail clean and moisturized
The best way to keep your horse from rubbing it’s tail is to keep it cleaned and moisturized. If your horse is suffering from dry skin and the horse’s tail is dirty, the horse will be prone to rubbing in order to relieve the itching. To ensure you maintain a healthy horse tail, Muck out shampoo by Animology is a formulation of silk and wheat proteins with vitamins and conditioners, to deliver exceptional levels of care and protection to your horses skin and hair, including the mane and tail.

The deep cleaning action penetrates deep down to the skin lifting dust and dirt to the surfaces in order that it can be easily washed away whilst the ‘easy rinse technology’ ensures that the shampoo is rinsed out quickly and efficiently.

7. Refrain from overbrading
Avoid braiding the hair tightly and leaving the braids in all the time. Although they make look pretty, those neat, tight braids can cut off circulation to the hair shafts, which will lead to breakage. Its best to braid long manes and tails loosely to prevent pasture damage, and remove show braids after an event.

A Guide to Dog Accessories

A Guide to Dog Accessories

When it comes to buying accessories for your dog, it can often be a bit overwhelming. You’ll ask yourself which dog accessories do I actually need?

The key concern is that your dog is comfortable and has everything they need to stay happy and healthy. Over time, once you’ve had your dog for a while you’ll get to know what accessories to style your dog, make them more comfortable or to help with training. The accessories you need completely depend on the type of dog you have and your personal preferences.

Dog accessories are basically any products you can you buy specifically for your dog and often tend to fall into three categories:

  • Training Accessories
  • Dog fashion accessories
  • Accessories to make your dog more comfortable

The above can include anything from dog beds, harnesses to training aids, grooming accessories to clothes, yes that right clothes for your dog.

If your thinking about getting a new puppy, then here’s the key accessories we advise you should get:

Collar and Lead:
The essential dog walking accessories – a collar is essential as you can place an identification tag when your out in public places with your dog, you’ll also require a lead to take your dogs on walks. You can choose a collar and lead to suit your dog, and are available in all colours and sizes. Animology stock a wide range of accessories for dogs that get your dog nice and cosy to be ideal for any dog.

Dogs need a place to snuggle up in, so what better than a nice cozy bed, especially during the winter months.

Dog Bowl:
A dog bowl is great for giving your dog food and water. If you have a larger dog its best to elevate the dog bowl above the ground.

Keep your dogs occupied by stocking up on a selection of doggy toys. Dog toys also provide your dog with mental stimulation as some toys are specially designed to enable dogs to display some of their natural instincts and behaviours.

Grooming Products:
It’s essential to keep your dogs well groomed on a regular basis, more so those with a longer coat. Some dogs need to have their coat trimmed every few weeks. Essential grooming products include brushes, dog shampoos and nail clippers.

Dog Fashion Accessories:
Spoil your dog with the latest fashion accessories, from jewellery to jackets accessories for dogs have become extremely popular in the last few years, with pet owners going that extra mile to pamper their beloved dogs.

If you’re looking to kit your dog out with some top notch dog accessories then shop online at Animology who provide top quality pet products at affordable prices.

Should I pay outright for my new boiler or purchase on finance?

Should I pay outright for my new boiler or purchase on finance?

The expense and complication of buying a replacement boiler is something that many of us can do without. So when the worst happens and your boiler is no longer economically repairable what should you buy and how should you pay for it?

What type of boiler?

Firstly, you’ll need to decide which type of boiler is right for you and your home? For gas boilers, the choice is between a regular boiler or a combi boiler. A regular boiler has a separate hot water cylinder and a combi produces all hot water instantly. Each has their pros and cons and it is largely down to your circumstances on which is best for you. A combi boiler is less efficient in producing hot water than a regular boiler; however, the heat loss from the cylinder can make the combi boiler overall more economical to run in some circumstances.

Larger families who use a lot of hot water are probably best with a regular boiler, whereas smaller households might benefit more from a combi boiler. Space is often a consideration if you don’t have a regular boiler already as you will need to make room for a cylinder. A trained heating engineer can advise you which boiler best suits your situation and size the boiler according to your heating and hot water requirements.

Savings and grants

If your current boiler is an old inefficient boiler (rated D-G) then you could save between £55-320 per year on your energy bills.

Depending on where you live, if you are in receipt of certain benefits, and the condition and age of your boiler you could be entitled to a grant towards the replacement boiler.

Buying it outright


  • Although a new boiler is costly, buying it outright will be cheaper in the long run as there will be no interest applied.
  • If you have the money the interest you receive from your bank will be less than the interest applied through finance.


  • Not everyone can afford to purchase a boiler outright.

Purchase with finance


  • Flexible payment schemes with a differing payment lengths to reduce the monthly cost to fit your budget.
  • Some suppliers also offer discounted boiler insurance covering servicing and repairs when purchasing through finance.


  • You will pay more for the boiler.
  • If you move home you will still be liable for the repayments.

Which to choose

Your circumstances will probably determine which option is the best for you, whether that is long-term savings or convenient and manageable monthly instalments. Whichever route you choose, shop around and get several quotes to ensure you get the best boiler and most appropriate deal for you. Often the exact same boiler can vary in final cost depending on the lender rates of interest and the pre-interest boiler cost.

Boiler care

Regardless of the method of payment, you may want to consider whether boiler insurance which covers repairs and servicing might be beneficial to ensure your boiler runs efficiently and takes away the worries about repair costs. This would be in addition to the costs of the repayments for your boilers on finance scheme.



The new trend of the garden office

The new trend of the garden office

Haven’t you heard darling? Slick Soho office space is so last year. The chicest, most bang-on-trend of office space this season is… wait for it… the humble garden shed.

Shedworking, as it’s affectionately known by fans, actually refers more broadly to working from any edifice in one’s garden: most commonly custom-built garden studios and offices, though renovated sheds are not unknown.

The cult of the shed is becoming quite the social phenomenon. Those rickety wooden slats tucked away in among the brambles and the compost bins have drawn the attention of none other than London’s mecca of museums, the V&A, which ran an exhibition dedicated to National Shed Week earlier this year. There’s been a whole coffee-table book devoted to shedworking, aptly titled Shedworking.

We wanted to find out what all the fuss is about – and look at whether shedworking is something all you homeworkers and prospective homeworkers should be considering, as an alternative to shoehorning your business into an overcrowded study.

Shedworking – why it works

In the last few years we have seen the number of specialists selling garden offices go up from five or six to more like 20 to 25. This is due to two factors; the recession and the general trend of more people working from home, and being able to work there now thanks to increasing speeds of broadband internet.

But it’s not just these two factors driving people to the more remote corners of their landholding. Shedworking, with all the peaceful isolation it brings, frees you from two of the worst culprits of unproductive in-house working: noise and distraction, in all their deviant forms. It’s also much less hassle on a day-to-day basis if you’re currently space-sharing – i.e. having to hurriedly shove your work-things to one side of the kitchen every time a meal is served.

There’s a more subtle element at play for shedworking devotees too: “You’re psychologically starting the day [when you go there] – it’s like going to the office,” Johnson explains. Except you get to bypass the sweaty, arduous, face-in-stranger’s-armpit commute – and all the time that normally takes. “You just get a better work-life balance. It feels healthier,” Johnson smiles.

And you can tailor and personalise your working environment precisely to your tastes. Which can be quite a blessing, as anyone who’s ever had a domestic over wall colours knows.

The nitty-gritty

Having your workspace in the garden isn’t necessarily a cheap option, but it’s more cost-effective than getting an extension or conservatory built: fully fitted-out garden studios start at around £3,000. Not every business has that kind of cash handy, of course, so the investment hinges on how long-term you think you’ll need it for – and whether you really do need it.

On the plus side, a good garden studio can add up to 5% to the value of your property, and works well as a selling point in competitive markets. And a few thousand pounds is still considerably cheaper than renting office or workshop space in many cases.

You need to follow some planning regulations too. Your studio has to be at least 5m away from your house, and if it’s taller than 2.5m you need planning permission (which normally takes about eight weeks to come through). It’s not allowed to take up more than 50% of your garden either. It’s worth talking to your planning authority just to be on the safe side – if you’re in a conservation area or your house is a listed property you definitely need to.

Shedworking – how to get it right

It is possible to convert an existing shed into a home office, but by the time you’ve factored in heating, security, insulation and cleared the whole thing out and refitted it again, you might as well have invested in a new one. (Although you could get away with it if you only need to work there in the summer and aren’t keeping any expensive equipment in there.)

You can buy a studio from a DIY centre and build and fit it out yourself for as little as a few hundred pounds if you’re clever about it, going up to a couple of thousand the flashier you get. Ask staff in Homebase or B&Q for advice. Be warned that things like electrics and heating can get complex – and if you haven’t had experience wiring things up before you’ll be safer leaving it to the pros.

If you do go with a professional garden studio company, expect to pay £4,000 – £10,000 for a basic model. That will include a door with a sturdy lock, double glazing, heating, electrical sockets, and proper flooring – so it really is a mini office. Prices go up to more like £35,000 – £40,000 if you want a shower, kitchen or mezzanine level.

Upping your budget can also afford you more contemporary designs, though you can find more affordable cutting edge studios.

You may need a concrete foundation laid for your studio, which is normally £2,000 – £3,000, although with some companies the studios have been designed specifically to side-step that requirement. The type of soil you’re on shouldn’t make any difference or cause problems.

The electrics running between your studio and house need to be done by an electrician, and don’t usually come as standard with the studio build. Ask for what’s called the ‘armoured cable’ (it’s a legal requirement to have that type) to go above ground rather than underground to cut costs.

Phone lines and broadband will depend on your service providers and wiring set-up, as will costs for connecting your home with your studio. You need to work out whether you want a separate phone line – and figure out all of this well in advance of purchasing a studio. Consider devices such as a Wi-Fi booster for internet connection.

Decoration is in the eye of the beholder, but keep an eye out for space-saving and fold-up furniture if you’re tight on square metres. Any built-in insulation should combat external noise, but soft furnishing will help too if you expect it to be a problem. If you’d like a garden office, Outdoor Living Rooms offers a great selection.