There aren’t only dogs up at Bleakholt. It is home also to rabbits, pot-bellied pigs, goats, horses, donkeys and a large number of cats – we got our own Buffy and Midge there about a decade ago.It’s a fun place to wander around. Now that I know the staff, and am getting to know the different dogs, it feels a comfy place, too. “Hello Pudding!” I call merrily as I pass his pen. I’ve started to be trusted to put the dogs away safely, and fetch the ones that know me. Now all I need to do is persuade them – the staff, not the dogs – to call me ‘Wombie’ rather than ‘Mike’. Not sure I’ll manage that.
Anyway, here are the pooches that I walked today. Normally, I try to make their walks last about half an hour, the recommended time, but I’m afraid that if I really like a dog, I’ll often go beyond that. I went beyond that with TODD here, as I really enjoyed our walk. Gorgeous collie (much more handsome than my quick snap suggests), lovely movement, and really responsive. After about twenty minutes, when he’d relaxed with me, I tried doing some close control work with him. He was brilliant, walking to heel well. I might look more into TODD’s background – if he’s happy with cats I might just think about whether I want to take things further.
(Of course, we have a Scottish holiday coming up, and I was intending to wait until after that, rather than dragging a new dog on the long drive north). This Sharpei (is that right?) is SAFFRON. She shares a run with Todd, but is as nervy as he is outgoing. She was timid, nervous of even the wind in the trees. I was talking about her with one of the other walkers who said that she had slipped out of her grasp, and had run straight back to her run at Bleakholt, luckily. I did like her curly tail, though.
(I wonder whether Bleakholt would be able to put a dog up for a week for us if we were interested in Todd? Probably not, since they rarely have any space. Something else to think about, though). Anyway, here’s LITTLE KIA (cos there’s a BIG KIA at Bleakholt, too) – she hated the rain, and kept trying to out-stubborn me and return to a place with a roof. I wasn’t having that, though, and persuaded her that she had to do what I wanted. Adie, at Bleakholt, told me that she came back from a walk once covered in stinky stinky fox poo. He ran a hose at low pressure to wash her off, but as soon as the water touched her she went monkeybonkers and sprinted for cover. Wuss.
(Yeah, I’ll find out about Todd versus Cats first. If he won’t wear them, there’s no point in continuing). Right, here’s the last dog that I walked today. You met him yesterday, of course. It’s that cheekie chappie of a Staffie, PUDDING. We had a good long wander. He keeps checking that you’re still there, glancing back to make sure aliens haven’t taken over the lead or something. He had a good old bark at some grass that startled him cos he walked into it with his head down. Idiot. Trust him to lick his face just as I* took his photo.
I’ll be walking more dogs tomorrow morning, and I’ll carry on blogging about them, since these posts have been getting such a positive response. I really should post about my writing again soon, though.