Friday, 18 June 2010

This is a wonderful article about how brilliant it is when a re-homing goes right.  It really needed to be shared and I think the picture says it all as Neo is jumping for joy!

What Did I Do?

(A Weimeraner– eye view to rehoming)

Well, I’m really not sure where it all started. As a young chap, I had nice food (French I believe!), a comfy crate to sleep in at night, and someone to come in at lunch time to walk me. Then, I had some different food with lots of pretty colours – hey, as long as I had food, that was fine with me! My Mum & Dad loved me very much & we had loads of cuddles, especially in the evening when I’d sit on Daddy’s lap! I really didn’t like being left on my own, and tried to tell Mum & Dad this by crying when they went upstairs or left me on my own. I found it helped to take my mind off my loneliness if I had something to chew. For some reason, the chews I found were not things I should have tried to chew. They were things called kitchen handles, kitchen units, and my favourite, skirting boards! But, they were there and they really did help to take my mind off things. Then, Mummy’s tummy started growing – it was very odd, and my walks seemed somehow to get slower. Then there were lots of conversations between Mum and Dad about me and what they were going to do. Sometimes there would be water running from their eyes and they would be very upset – I got really worried that I’d done something really awful. One day a really nice lady who smelt of lots of other dogs came to speak to Mum and was really interested in me too. We went for a walk together which was lovely, and she was so nice.

Lots and lots of time seemed to pass, and more and more boxes appeared in the house and more and more things seemed to disappear. This made me so worried that I needed to find more chew things to try and take my mind off it – but it didn’t help. Mum and Dad kept getting water running from their eyes, and it would get worse when I tried to play with them or tease them into laughing. I was getting really, really worried by then.

Then, one day, we got up really early, and Mum & Dad were in a very strange mood, and kept cuddling me. Some people I hadn’t seen before came to speak to Mum & Dad, & they too smelt of lots of dogs. Things got stranger from there in! We went for a walk with these people, and they walked with Mum, Dad & me for a while and then one of them disappeared. She came back shortly after with one of her dogs – a Weimaraner like me! – It was great fun to walk with someone else, and it was a girl Weimaraner too! Shortly after, yet another dog came to join in with our walk – I hadn’t had so much fun in ages! We then went back home and Mum & Dad’s eyes were really leaking badly by then. I was so worried that I’d done something awful, and was very upset. Then Daddy asked me to get into the new people’s van (he’d never asked me to do that before). Before I knew it, the boot was shut and I was next to my new friends, the girl Weimaraner and a couple of other dogs. I must say, they were all very friendly, but it was very frightening. I had my own water bowl in the cage in the van, and I really think the water smelt funny – the others said it was a rescue remedy that made it like that, but I still don’t understand why you’d want to rescue water, but hey, it tasted OK. Anyway, that was the last time I ever saw my Mum & Dad. I was very sad for a while, but I started chatting to my new friends, and they had such stories to tell that I soon forgot my worries. We arrived at a farm that we were to stay at for a few days and my new friends and I flew around the garden there for ages, I hadn’t had so much fun for ages. Perhaps these new people wouldn’t be too bad – they seemed very friendly.

That first night with the new people was wonderful. I still got shut in a crate like I did at my house, but this one was HUGE, and it was in the bedroom with the new people and my new friends. It was so nice having company at night, I was so tired and happy I fell asleep straight away. In the morning, the new lady quietly took me out of my cage & she had a lead in her hand. I wasn’t sure what was going on, but it turned out she was taking me for a WALK! – Oh my goodness, I hadn’t been for a walk early in the morning for ever! It was wonderful to smell all the smells on the fresh dew, we had a fantastic time and I really hoped I could stay with these new people for ever. The pattern of walking, playing with my friends and going for drives in the van carried on for the next few days, I even started getting some really yummy food in my bowl which made my tummy feel loads better than the pretty looking food, and I didn’t want it to ever end.

My new friends said that when new dogs come into the family, they always stay so I should not worry, but I got really scared when the new people started packing things into the van. I thought that they were going to leave me too, and I got so upset. Imagine my delight then when I found out that they were never going to leave me and I was going to go for a long ride in the van, go on a big boat and start my new life on an island with more dog walks than I’d ever seen in my life.

The new people are my new Mum & Dad, I love them dearly, and more than that, I know that they really love me too. It’s the most wonderful feeling in the world. We’ve had good times - and bad, the worst being when my doggy friends had to leave us suddenly. My Mum says they are waiting for us at a place called Rainbow Bridge, and that they are very happy and have no pain now, for which I’m pleased, and I look forward to seeing them again someday. I now have a couple of new friends which I love very dearly, and I also have friends I have made doing this thing called agility. I’m told I’m very good at this agility business, I just need to concentrate. (What people don’t realise is that with so many wonderful things in my life these days, it’s very difficult to concentrate on just one of them at a time!) When you’ve been without, you just learn to appreciate all the great things in life that you never knew you were missing out on. I just feel sorry for all those dogs that will never know all the wonderful experiences that I have been through over the last year.

So, if any of you dogs are worried as it looks as if you are not going to be living with your Mum & Dad any more, don’t be worried, you too may end up with another brilliant new Mum & Dad and have more fun than you ever thought possible. Remember, these Mum & Dad’s choose you for who you are & what you can become, they don’t mind what you may or may not have done in the past. Give them a chance and they will give you a chance too. Life can be better than you ever dreamt.

All my dreams have come true over the last year – I hope yours do too!

Thursday, 17 June 2010

Not an encouraging start to the week for me or the dogs.  These episodes of distracted moments seem to be increasing on my behalf and this one is right up there along with running my mum over and gluing Tilly's ear to her collar.

I had to take Hector to the vet and on my way to them I stopped at the garage to get fuel along with a bottle of screen wash.  I purchased the latter as there has been an article in our paper how those who use screen wash are less likely to get Legionnaire's disease from the water in their screen wash facility in their vechicles (I know, I know, likely hood of which is about 1,000,000/1 in reality)

As I do with most of my stuff, said bottle of screen wash was chucked on to the passenger seat of the van and off I set.  Our only dual carriage way on the Island is undergoing road works at the moment.  The tail backs are horrific and you proceed at a snail's pace, if moving at all.  It's quiet warm out and I was idly admiring the nice (ok, half undressed) workmen going about earning their daily crust on said road works when I reached across to get the bottle of water that resides on my passenger seat along with the rest of my "crap" that Colin so cruelly describes my articles of importance that live in my van.  I didn't look what I was doing as I repeat this action at least ten time a day.

I unscrewed the cap of the bottle and took a swig.  Just as well the traffic was stationary as I had to fling the van door open and bring half my stomach contents up at the side of the road.    I can tell you know why they recommend you use screen wash to avoid Legionnaire's Disease - it tastes awful and strips the inside of your mouth!  I had, stupidly grabbed the wrong bottle.  I was so humiliated as the nice men I had just seconds before been admiring were now trying to help me and must of thought I was having some sort of fit as I was dribbling bright blue liquid from my mouth.  It did not help that Hector and Tilly decided to put on their "lets audition for Hound of the Baskervilles" act on as the noise caused some people to wind up their windows.

I could hardly speak to the vet when I finally arrived and I am sure he must of thought I had lost my voice due to screaming at my two evils.  I wasn't going to correct him as it was not one of my finest moments I must admit.

Friday, 4 June 2010

Occupied myself with a weekend of agility Bank Holiday just past.  At the age of ten I wasn't expecting much from Hector, but he did me proud in as much that he stayed in the ring and did not humiliate me too much.

First class I entered he lost concentration a bit and waffled enough to get us eliminated but at least I did not have to scream at him and only issued one "bugger" at him.  The second class entered I pushed him out of the entry to the weaves.  Our weaves have always been a down point as I am not good at them.  It wasn't third time lucky either as I forgot which way to go, which I was so annoyed about as although we would not of won we would of had a nice clear round if it I had not picked those five faults up.

Considering we have not entered anything since October last year and only been to one training session since, I think Hector let me off very lightly.  It was also open cl assess of grade 1-7 dogs so maybe a bit out of our reach anyway.  I know my sticking point has always been winding him up enough to get him going, but I have spent so long calming my Weims down it is a hard habit to break as you know how once you wind they up it is hard to find the off switch LOL.

Weather was ok(ish)  bad wind on the Saturday gave me a bad earache and I felt like a big pink pimple on the scenery when it was my turn to do the poles as I was sitting with my pink hoody up and my face all pink from the wind.  The judges were from the UK as were some competitors.  All a nice bunch of people.  One thing that stood out for me was this tiny little Italian Greyhound that was standing waiting to go in all shaking and I thought how cruel as it did not look like it wanted to be there.  How wrong I was, it flew round the ring leaving a show of paws in its wake.  Brilliant to watch

On the Tuesday they had a class on the beach which was nice to see as they used to take agility on the beach until the powers that be introduced their draconian anti dog laws.  Hector just dug holes and ran off trying to swim, hence the reason I did not enter him in it as the beach is for digging and swimming according to my Wontis.  Tilly pulled a real good one and took off after a horse that came from behind me and which I did not hear.  Got loads of comments as to how fast she was and the rider brought her back for me as he said she started getting distressed when she realised she did not know where she was.  Nearly had a heart attack trying to run after her to get her back as if I could keep up with horse and hound.

The waiting between classes can still be trying for me and the dogs as it is something we still not used to, having come into agility at a late age.  So long as Hector enjoys it I will persevere because he can still pull a good round and win a pretty ribbon at times.  Plenty time for him to humiliate me more......and there is Tilly to try as yet (god help me)