Who are we?

Milgi Coats was founded by Andrew and Kathryn Woodhouse.  We live on the outskirts of Cardiff, Wales with our rescue and foster greyhounds and lurcher.

Why Milgi?

“Milgi” is the Welsh word for greyhound.

Why greyhounds and pointies?

Kathryn has been a dog lover since childhood, and was brought up with rescue dogs, all mongrels from Swansea Dogs’ Home (in the days when it was sited at Singleton Park).  Full time work commitments prevented us from dog ownership but we continued to do voluntary work, walk for The Cinnamon Trust and “dog-sit” for friends. 

We originally became interested in greyhounds when we were considering adopting a rescue dog, shortly after we’d settled in Cardiff.  Andrew has asthma and is allergic to long haired breeds so we were hunting for a dog that would not trigger his allergies.  Greyhounds, with their very fine, short hair were recommended to us as being ideal.  Shortly after that, our first greyhound arrived.  Initially, we had no plans to adopt any more. 

Within three months, we were on our way to meet our second greyhound, and shortly after that we began fostering. Like most fosterers, it was only a matter of time before we "failed" and our third greyhound took up permanent residence on the sofa. Since then, two much loved and very senior hounds have gone to the Bridge but new, long term fosters have arrived. 

We continue to do voluntary work for a number of charities and rescues and in particular for Cariad, the Welsh campaign against puppy farming.

What motivates us?

We set up the business because we were disappointed with some of the coats on the market and couldn’t find what we wanted for our own hounds.  Although outdoor coats are mostly well made and very practical, there didn’t seem to be a good fleece housecoat on the market and we desperately wanted a fun, funky, luxurious alternative to the dull and boring walking out coats we’d seen. 

Like many sighthound owners, we’ve bought gorgeous collars for our hounds, and we wanted coats that had the same standards of luxury and fashion.  Our coats are beautifully made and carefully designed – every single size has been tested by real dogs to ensure a great fit.  We’ve selected unusual and eye-catching fabrics and make our coats in short runs so you won’t see everyone else wearing them. 

In addition, we wanted to ensure the coats were made here in the UK.  At the research stage, we seriously considered setting up the manufacturing overseas, if we had done so, the coats would almost certainly have been much cheaper.  However, this would mean our business was directly supporting sweatshop conditions for workers, poor health and safety standards, and often (especially for China) regimes with poor human rights records, along with poor animal welfare standards.  Having a business that supported sighthound rescue while exploiting vulnerable humans doesn’t seem right to us. 

Manufacturing here in Wales and the Westcountry means we get hands-on at every stage of the process and we are providing valuable work for experienced industrial machinists.  We are very proud to be able to base our business here and to act as customers to other Welsh businesses, for instance, our bespoke labels are made in Pembrokeshire, and our printers are based in the local community centre.