Posted by: kathandroger | March 18, 2018

Three dogs and a new fishing bird.

We enjoy walking our dog. She has a youthful energy which we both envy, and her relentless pursuit of wild animals, real or imagined is a daily amusement. It also gets us out of the house, in fair weather or foul, and we appreciate the ever changing countryside around us. So it was no problem to accept the request of friends Dave and Pay, to look after their brace of dogs for a few days. Rollo, the spaniel/poodle cross is about three now, and escaped from his home about a year ago on one of those wonderful randy urges which we all used to revel in during our youth. The result was a litter of pups from a nearby labrador bitch, one of which remains his companion. Rollo’s reward was to have his family jewels removed! So Flora, Polly and Rollo have been together for a few days. A sudden family influx has made a big difference to our household. The first mornings wimper from the pack made me venture sleepily downstairs in bare feet to encounter a strange but familiar wet feeling between my toes at the bottom of the stairs. The culprit cannot be proven, but our training over the past months has made dog pee a part of life, and the puddle was soon cleared. Walking three dogs is different from walking one.IMG_1430
Even young dogs pull like billy o, and commands are diluted by three. After some vigorous exercise behaviour becomes rather more acceptable though, and in general they have been a pleasure to inflict on the fauna of our lovely countryside. To see three dogs trying in vain to make any progress in pursuit of a hare or deer is incomparable entertainment; we know the animal will escape and the dogs come back looking as if they have had the time of their lives.
But what to do when three animals are back home and wanting some entertainment? Now these are three intelligent animals, and playing tug with a pair of old socks is not interlectually fulfilling for them. So we have begun reading stories to them.IMG_0488
We began with old favourites like 101 Dalmatians, but it was too basic, so we are now making progress with ” A short history of Nearly Everything” by Bill Bryson. They seem to appreciate the nuances of the American’s quiet humour. After several hours reading they settle into a lasting slumber, no doubt pondering the lessons of history.IMG_1433
But back to the real world. The barn end with the fish sculptures needed something more higher up. The result was inspired by a spare cutter from an old Allen scythe found in the workshop, and an old oil barrel from over the road. And with the use of the trusty old plasma cutter (has there ever been a better boy’s toy made?), and a bit of very inexpert welding, the menacing bird has been erected.IMG_3929I don’t think there is any more room on that wall, so we may have to build another barn. It looks OK with the others though.IMG_3928
But now spring is coming and some proper work needs to be done-in the garden!


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