Just look what my mum made for me – the biggest dog kennel in the world! It’s got all the doggy necessities, kitted out with a rug, plants, chairs so that she can join me when I need company and a table at nose height for snaffling leftovers.
Wait a minute, she says, it’s NOT A DOG KENNEL, it’s a summerhouse. Could have fooled me. I love it, and the new flagstones in the yard. Sandstone with fossils, I’m told.
Now I should explain for my US fans that an English yard is not like a yard in America with grass and stuff. Our yards are paved and usually at the back of the house, very private, where a canine can have good sniff around, etc, in complete safety. Ours has high walls and is a real suntrap when the yellow thing decides to make an appearance.
We have lots of herbs and other plants, especially hostas which my mum loves. But so do snails so there has been a big snail hunt to get rid of the beasts and mum has put them in high pots so that I can’t do any damage if I’m doing a spot of – er – watering.
She’s good to me, my mum, making such a lovely space.
…so how could I possibly get in? Standing there in the street, unable to get into the house cos the gate was shut, with my mum calling me a fool. How dare she! There may have been people going by who might have heard. She has no respect for me at all.
I’d had a lovely time inspecting the fence and the shrubberies within calling distance of my house but was starting to feel a bit neglected, having been out there about half an hour. Had she forgotten me? I gave one loud bark and that made her remember. You could have knocked me down with a feather when she came out – and called me a fool because I was standing behind the gate. But it’s closed…how much does a dog have to do for himself?
You jumped over to get there, says mum, so why can’t you jump back?
I’m hotpawing it out the front door for my weekend romp on the playing fields with the Irish Aunt and sprog when I’m set upon by Cleo, puffed up into an enormous furry monster. Hissed, sunk her claws into my bum and frightened me so much I ran off down the path – but then she chased me!
Oh, the shame, being targeted by an itsy bitsy 9lb cat and then being run out of my own garden.
I got no sympathy from my family who were giggling and roaring: ‘Go, Cleo, get him!’, not concerned at all for my welfare, or pride. Then more shame as people walking down my street started laughing.
Think I’d better lie low for the rest of the day, get over the trauma and rebuild my dignity. And keep out of the way of cats.
Just look at the size of that tail!
Great excitement from my mum this morning. It got dark, she ran for the camera and started taking pictures of the sky. What a fuss when it gets dark every day.
Solar eclipse, March 20, 2015
It was an eclipse, she says. Clips, clips, I’m not being clipped again already, am I?? I’ve just been clipped! Not clips, an Eclipse, a solar eclipse, where the moon passes over the sun and makes it dark, she retorts.
Oh, right; as long as she’s not getting the scissors out. Can we co to the beach now? I bet it’s not dark down there; we never go to the beach in the dark.
Do not be fooled by the drop of leftover milk on the chin, Marley is no innocent. He looks as if butter wouldn’t melt in his mouth – but not only can butter melt, he’s turning into a voracious hunter. He killed a wren, a tiny, pretty WREN!
My mum was incandescent. He jumped on the window ledge with something in his mouth and mum thought it was a mouse. When she went outside to get a better look she discovered it was a poor little wren, neck broken, still warm and newly dead. He caught a mouse a couple of weeks ago but let that go.
Mum says he is not to go after wrens but tackle something like pigeons which she hates. He’s big enough to manage it, let me tell you.
My mum brought home a new toy – a puzzle game where she hides treats and I have to get them out. I decided to give her a run for her money and play dumb – no point solving the puzzle immediately when she was looking for a bit of fun. So I strung her along, did my ‘lights on, no-one home’ act and she really fell for it, starting videoing me and published it on facebook so that all her friends could see. One of them said I was ‘gorgeous, but dumb as a brick – the Brad Pitt of springers’. Thing is, she had no idea that it was me playing with her, not the other way round!!
See me in action here:
She said the cat would work it out in no time. I challenged her to prove it:
What does she expect? Takes me down to the beach in the car then gets mad because I don’t want to get in it again to go home. Tells me I was naughty, willful and an embarrassment, that I didn’t deserve to go swimming and would forfeit my biscuits when she got me home.
She says it was lucky the nice man got out of the car I was circling and offered her a half choke collar to try. I’d really dug my heels in, slipped my head out of my collar when she tried to pull me and, of course, I’m too heavy for her to pick up, being a sizeable 22 kilos of pure muscle.
With the borrowed collar I couldn’t get my head free so she and her rescuer were able to drag and shove me towards the car where I gave in and got in. Yesterday she bought one of those collars…
Her attention was distracted for a while when we got home as she found Marley on the doorstep with a teensy weensy mouse. He put it down, she shuffled him inside but later I saw him follow the trail it must have left scurrying out of the garden.
He was in trouble again later for trying to scratch his way into a new, unopened bag of cat food so I didn’t feel too bad at the end of the day cos it was one point against me but two against the cat. I call that a win-win.