Saturday, 30 October 2010

Bitter Pill

I sit with the little one and I learn his smell, breath in those glorious whiffs that are exclusively Flutes. To feel his wiggly, sleek body barely able to sit still for a moment. His coat is both soft and hard, the hair along his back is rougher and longer than his hair on his flanks which is as soft as his ear hair. Ears! What can I say about those ears?! The are stiff and now stand proud and idiotic, belonging to a much larger dog that he is yet to become. Both have a slight kink in them that will flatten out hopefully not to be forgotten.

When he is calm I look into his eyes, green with amber edging and wonder what he can see with those pretty eyes, to think we will never really see what they see or even have an idea of what they see. His pink nose that has a hint of burnt sienna and tonight a vague whiff of cow pat.

Will he ever grow into those huge joints? Big neat paws that seem impossibly oversized, pads just starting to harden up with use no longer the palest pink. He is yet to have those legs under control, he merely tries and see what he gets. Why not, it is just so much fun running, turning and finding out what he can do with those limbs.

His tail is as long as he is and it wags like no other. Funny that Buck wags but its an understated gesture, an after thought. Flute's tail is a barometer of his mood, which is nearly always sunny. His days are filled with delight interspersed with frustration. His frustration spills over as he is yet to learn control so he huffs and puffs, he digs and screams and then he sleeps.

Even sleep is like a cliche, just like a baby or cats he sleeps deeply without a care, not disturbed by anything.

So why is this a bitter pill, what could possibly spoil this lovely period of sharing your life with a puppy?

It shows you just how different life is for Shy. His smell changed a long time ago though he doesn't smell like a really old dog like Buck. Shy's beautifully silky coat on his head and ears are still in wonderful condition yet his rough hair on his body is tired. His skin is so thin and wrinkly, delicate and dry. His ears are a delight as soft as they have always been.

Oh those eyes, pale blue with deep blue highlights and a splash of chocolate near the top. The mark on his iris where a bramble pierced it is still there but doesn't mar in anyway. There has always been a sad, drawn look in those eyes, eyes that have lived through cruelty and survived. They are now tinged with anxiety, still ever aware of what might be. His nose is always dry not because there is something wrong just not wet or drippy.

I just love his colour yet if he could have chosen he would have been a dull, invisible colour so he could blend in, move round the edges of life, so he could feel safe and make choices without being watched. Shy's legs and joints are coming to an end, how can I lose someone so dear because his legs, feet and joints no longer function, impinging on the nerves. Shy's safety net has now gone, he can no longer jump up and move away from fear. It takes time, takes effort and it makes him more aware. Something he had lost over time after coming to live with me. His feeling of safety is slipping away just as his mobility is.

I still relish his delight at seeing us, at the the look on his face when I feed him or tell him to roll over for a cuddle and a snuggle. To see him wiggle and dance just before a gentle tootle along the lane, his nose still longs for those daily updates. I feel bad that there are days I don't get him out, he just mooches around the house and garden, swinging between trying to keep him mobile, stopping him from getting too sore and keeping him happy.

What will I do when I don't have a daft lurcher parading with his 'foot', 'hedgehog' or anything else he can find. How will it feel to not have Shy's broken bashed tail whipping me without mercy just because he is so pleased that I am home? I chose my new pup to be an Ibizan as I loved the playful side to Shy that Swift and Buck simply don't/ didn't have. They hunt and anything playful is just a practise run for hunting. Shy plays, he goons and plays silly buggers just because it feels good.

To see Flute starting life makes me feel for Shy who is coming towards the end of his too fast for me to comprehend.

Monday is a change for me. A massive step like many I have taken before. To take time away from the guys in order to catch up on my artwork commitments. It is scary and something I will find a relief but dread, how many people would swap walking with the guys for sitting in the house and drawing? Yet I also am grateful it gives me one more day in ever decreasing days left with Shy, maybe it will make all the difference. After years of having them by my side 24/7 working with them, sharing my bed much has changed and there have been many positives but I am looking forward to some Shy time even if that just means a sleeping dog on the settee next to me whilst I draw.

I can only post this cos it's late, I am less inclined to feel embarrassed at my outpourings, to not think of those people who feel I shouldn't wallow or get so tied up over a dog....but he is my dog and I love him.

Night night

Thursday, 28 October 2010

Beautiful day!

Urm what am I gonna do when he grows into those ears?
Poppy waiting.....
Truffle that is no way to talk to your nanny!
Ah bless him he is a little bit of an airhead
I only asked you to sit Elsie don't worry!
Honestly Tash you had the last treat
I just love this spot
Autumn is a beautiful month
Me me me
Even Special people need help sometimes
Roly on his infamous pedestal
The jumpy log
Get those back legs working

Elsie loves to make you lok like you are asking for blood

Wednesday, 27 October 2010

We are going on a date!

You, Me and Sam are all going on a date!

11th November 2010 after work, meet at the pub and have some grub. The Moorings, Hett Hills Chester le Street DH2 3JU. Meal prices from £5.95 to £24

If you don't want to eat don't and if you do just order what you want when you want and if we say earliest 6.30pm latest 8.30pm for ordering food, if you need our vans for the guys just let us know, heaters will be fired up and at least they will have company!

I really would love you all to come, as many of your family as you want and we can talk dog as much as is humanly possible. There will be entertainment on ( not really though take it form me when we all get together it will be entertaining) you can come in jimjams or evening wear for all I care, just whatever you feel like wearing. Well behaved children welcome and of course Petnanny babies welcome.

Go on you know you want to!

Monday, 25 October 2010

For all puggy owners and lovers

This was found on the net by Roly and Poppy's mum:

Pug Morning

I went in this morning & what did I see?
A wrinkled-up pug face, just staring at me
He had big black eyes & little short nose
Soft velvet ears, folded up like a rose
Just inches away he gave a big wheeze,
Sucked in some air & let out a huge sneeze
A joy? a pleasure? A thrill? – it is NOT
To be greeted at close range by a spray of pug snot!!!

Thursday, 21 October 2010

A change is as good as a rest


Now I know this is certainly not a boring job BUT you do get a little bored of the same walks remembering that we do the walk many times more than each individual dog.

So I went back in time....and we have been walking where I walked many many times with my childhood dogs. It is funny how the park is now small whereas it seemed so big when I was younger, then there is the scout hut the corner that seemed so dark and scary now only scares me because it is always slippery! Next is the challenge of keeping the dogs off the farmers fields it is easy when there are fences or a visual barrier. Next is the poop run, why can't people pick up for goodness sake it isn't difficult! Along to the gate, manners are needed here it isn't just the wedgers that can cause chaos by pushing past.

Now is the interesting part, the dogs legs start to weaken with all those delicious smells, so while they absorb the smells I enjoy having a nosey. Next we pass the stables that Mattie luxuriated in all those years, where Ella came when she became mine and where Puzzle spent his whole time letting himself out and going for walkabout. Maybe the pictures that flashed into my mind are like the pictures that must flash into the guys minds eye whilst smelling all that is before them?

Whilst the guys may not enjoy the leader work much the off lead work makes up for any feelings of frustration. Up the bank, I check out the beautiful Charolais cows and wonder when the bulls will be back at the farm( they overwinter at one farm) and whether I knew the cows mothers or father. This time the cows watched back as we walked past and the guys have a nosey before moving off, moving off far easier than when I have to get them past cow pats!

Stopping at the poo bin that is new( and much appreciated) then I laugh at CharlieLab overreacting at the bull sign that is a familiar sight to me. Still we walk up the hill past the houses and then turn past the pub that Puzzle visited when he was on one of his walkabouts, he enjoyed some cider and crisps at the bar when one of the clients thought it would be funny to see a pony enjoying some of the pub delights.

Murphy never flickered as the combine and lorries went past, everyone else trotted along without a flicker with only Charlie feeling anxious. Down thought the cut where I nearly went over the barrier when I went too fast on my bike all those years ago and lived with the scraped knuckles where I misjudged the width of the cut. Past the next bin I pass the newsagents that supplied me with 10p mix ups and the Buster comic through the next cut and head back to what was home.

You get into a rhythm walking along with your hands full of dogs, walking and thinking, talking and cooing to them. Asking Murphy to slow down and Oscar to walk on one side. For Mila to get a wriggle on and Beau to stop sniffing the lampposts!

Every walk means something different to each dog and to me, we all walk the same walk yet we all had different experiences. The one thing I do know is the guys walk was in the present yet mine was straddling two times, past and present and you know I enjoyed it immensely.

Wednesday, 13 October 2010

What they really mean

I have, over the years, come to realise you have to read into what people tell you.

I am currently looking after two ferrets, their mum was filling me in on all of the details about their needs when I asked if they bite. Now both are rescue ferrets so I knew she didn't have their full history. She hesitated before she said she didn't bite her. So I was very careful the first day to make sure I didn't unduly upset them and all was fine....until day two when Elize turned into ferocious ferret ran across he hutch and latched onto me. Stupid Nanny! Now I knew from Mums hesitation that it was likely they could bite. After sometime I did realise that ferocious ferret had no intention of letting go so I had to gently tap her on the nose with the poop scoop, I did chuckle at the look she gave me Indignant ferret indeed.

So here we go:

She does bite me means: she doesn't bite me anymore after I twonked her on the head but likely to bite anyone stupid enough to ignore ferrets have sharp teeth and are willing to use them.

My dog doesn't mind you coming in( big Airedale called Rebel): He doesn't mind you coming in but you just try leaving then you will realise just how a rather large terrier deals with impudence. WATCH YOUR BUM! Ah it doesn't hurt half as much when you stuff the terriers gob full of squeaky toy you bought for him.

Recall, urm he comes back( A deceivingly fast westie called Dylan): Of course he comes back but not before he has left you for broke, ran across five fields barking and cavorting with everything in his path before heading back to sniff at your feet, mind you not close enough for you to catch him just far enough away to make you feel like giving it all up and taking up a cleaners job in a lyposuction clinic. Of course he comes back to the owner cos he knows where he lives and just tootles back home when he feels ready. Yes I taught him to recall.

Can you give my cat his tablet cos she doesn't like taking them in her food: This actually means the vet once tried to pop the tablet down the said cats throat then had a quiet trip to A and E after having their finger pierced by a rancid cat tooth, face marked enough to put a shaman to shame and chin bitten firmly by a slightly hysterical cat. Yes I managed with the help of a pillpopper, welding gloves, a large towel and a cushion.

He's never really been near men apart from my hubby( a Great big blumin loony Dane called Harley): No he's never been near because he screams and lunges at them like a dog possessed which then makes any self respecting man run for the hills, that is why he has never been near. You know what I am going to say...Yes I managed to get him man tolerant but it took time, on one occasion he passed out (before we realised he had a condition that caused him to collapse with certain types of exercise) and I need help taking him back to the van, I didn't mention to the firemen who helped me that he may want to thank them physically for their generous help and thankfully by the time he came round( I gave him electrolytes) he was quite chilled at the receding male figures!

He is nearly housetrained( I am going to save peoples blushed with this one ): Of course he's not housetrained, so watch out if you sit down to have your tea cos if you don't share your food he will come over and pee on your unsuspecting dog, or heaven forbid you head up to bed and ask him to lie in his own because you will wake up to him peeing on you in your bed. Make sure you shut the toilet door! Oh and don't ever bend over. Urm didn't ever see him again after that one petsitting job, funny that...

Sunday, 10 October 2010

Flute's first walk.

Look at the style
He thinks he is missing out
Puppy having his first wee is an event haha
Tash came along and when we couldn't find her for a second we worked out why!

Come on Brucey smile!
I think he wants to be an explorer when he grows up

I must admit I am smitten! Even if he does look like an Aardvark.

Wednesday, 6 October 2010

Excuses excuses

I am sorry the blog entries have been somewhat sparse....

One reason is:

Then there is:

Buck is very content and Shy is doing well considering.

Then there is:

Getting ready for the Kennel Club fair and also keep up with the commissions

Whilst still schooling my young horses.