.... and he's flaked out (see photos on front page) Oops! They should be in the Photogallery, but have somehow sneaked onto the front page. I'll move them tomorrow.
On Alfie's first full day with us, he was kept on a long lead at The Burrs this morning, but then allowed off in 7-acre Country Park this afternoon after it became obvious he wasn't going to let us out of his sight really. And then down The Line this evening. Since then he has been flat out, with his eyes tight shut, unless we attempt to stroke him - then he rolls over onto his back for a tummy tickle!
Spent a lovely couple of hours with the four dogs down at The Burrs. Lots of water for Sweep and Wally, and Tess swam out to chase some ducks, which annoyingly just flew off as she was getting within reach. Sweep was very good at retrieving the ball either on land or water.... only having it taken from her by Wally at the end. Sam, the rug-ratter, was convinced he'd found a water-rat's hole and had to be dragged away. It was the first time we had let Sam off the lead - and he was absolutely fine.He even almost broke into a run once. (I didn't believe he could until Carolyn sent us a hilarious video of him!) They then spent the rest of the afternoon fast asleep.
Sometimes, either because the owner doesn't want us to, or because we are not totally convinced of recall, or maybe we are concerned that a dog who knows its surroundings might just decide to head for home, we might not let it off its lead. Then, and even at other times, it's quite good to go and play in the security of our garden. We did this recently with Willow - she thoroughly enjoyed playing with David and a stick. (see the photogallery) I've even called in for shelter a couple of times when the heavens have opened at the wrong time. If this happens, the dogs still get their full walk - it just means it takes longer from start to finish, and so they have company for longer too.
Then sometimes a dog may not be able to go for a walk because it has a poorly leg or some other reason. But Henry was still very pleased to see us even if he didn't get to go out. We let him out in the garden, gave him his biscuits, and just sat and stroked him. And talked to him. He gets a bit fed up of the TV sometimes.
Two gorgeous dogs! Sasha, aged 9, can best be described as majestic; meanwhile Lucky (named because his present owner rescued him after being hit by a car) is a small version of The Tramp. You can't help but smile at his cheeky expressions. Watch for the photos.
Just got a new "Dog phone" today - hopefully one which David doesn't cancel as he gets it out of his pocket. It closes up. £7.99 from Carphone Warehouse. How can they do it this cheaply?
Well - he's still after it. This time behind the settee. I thought he was squealing to get to David in the kitchen, but no, he was trying to get behind the settee. He's getting lots more vocal too. Really talks to us in the morning, mainly asking for his breakfast, and refusing to go in the garden until he's had it. And still refusing to go in the garden after he's had it.
Despite lying in wait, now for 3 days (and 2 friendly mouse traps down as well).... not a single mouse or dropping in sight. And Sam still insists on checking everywhere - under the stairs, the downstairs loo, the fridge (but that's a ploy). We've taken him for walks, but this lad doesn't believe in "fast". Just saunters along... until... a leaf fluttered, just like a mouse, and Sam broke into a sprint, for a whole two yards. As I write this, he's diverted his attentions to a different corner of the room, behind the chest and the standard lamp. NO SAM. WE ARE NOT MOVING IT, so just stop your squealing. (But he's fine - honestly.)
It's been all change this afternoon. Now we just have Sam, the Norfolk terrier. Apparently they were bred as ratters for students at Cambridge University I am told. Sam is CONVINCED there is a mouse in or behind our piano. We have taken it to pieces, and indeed, found a mouse nest.... hopefully from a couple of years ago when we DID have one. No other signs now. But he was still convinced. So then I pulled out the computer table and all its rubbish. And cleaned behind it! (This does not get done very often I'm afraid.) Definitely no mice, or any signs. But he's not having any of it! He's still trying to get behind the wires, and whining. Even when he SAW me pull it all out. I just hope he's not right somehow. But none of Alfie, Molli, George, Mildred, Sophie, Sasha, Suzie, Ruby, Lucy, Lacy, Mario, Little Alfie, Daisy-fox terrier....has noticed anything untoward. I'm still putting my feet on the chair, though, as I type this - just in case a little mouse comes scurrying out. Aaargh!
We've been having fun the last few days. Harley and Ollie, the chihuahuas have terrorised anything that comes near them. I agree with their owner - they probably think they are rottweilers, and actually get away with it as people and dogs look at them and think they can't be serious, and can't really hurt, so don't stop them. Lacy, the schitzu we who has come for daycare this week, didn't seem to know what to do at first, so just ignored them, but after a while wagged her tail and actually enjoyed playing with them. I was a bit worried that Sasha, the big German Shepherd, might think they were her supper, but no, she just escaped to a corner.
By 18.30, she's shattered. We seem to have this effects on "our" dogs. David has her out lots, or she follows him around all day, so she just takes herself off to her bed, which is now in our plastic purple basket - she likes that. But this morning I tried to let David have a lie-in. I moved the alarm clock, went downstairs and had my breakfast. Lucy wanted to just get past me to go upstairs to him. If he goes down first, she comes up to me. But then I shut her in the kitchen while I went up to get dressed. I was just upstairs when she started barking, and then HOWLED !!! I had to run down quickly. He didn't get a lie in!
He was also walking Willow (the white retriever) and Flora. Apparently she and Willow got on like a house on fire, especially with the ball, which Lucy ran for, then dropped, was picked up by Willow, and followed round by Lucy. No wonder they were tired. Flora would still rather not join in, but that's her prerogative.