Missing – Dad and Bob.

Of all the things I have ever written this is the toughest.

As this is Bob’s blog I will explain his story first.

On the 23rd of April, my best 4 legged buddy passed away. Bob has always been with me as I type my blog entries. His favourite position was to sleep on my feet and snore softly as I typed. It is an overused statement but – I miss him.

We were told, as many of you know, in March of 2018 that we would be lucky to have him with us for another month or two.

For me my emotions are like a daily rollercoaster as only four weeks before Bob, my Dad passed away. I was starting to come to terms with that loss when Bob left us.

I am still recovering from the shock of losing two strong well-loved individuals, (yes I know that Bob was to most – only a dog) who played such a big part in my daily life. In fact, in the past four years, my life has been centred around them and visits to Doctors and Veterinarians.

For Ellie, life has become a confusing place. She always had Bob with her except when she was working and even then when she arrived back home, he was at the back of the car ready to welcome her. Now when she gets out of the car she tends to stand and look around the yard as though expecting him to amble around the corner to say hello. She is not the only one who does this.

I really don’t want to stop writing the blog as I am still learning and working with dogs, but I am open to suggestions from the few who read my ramblings. But without Dad and Bob, the world has tilted.

I have visited the vets many times, as I stated above, but on that horrible evening, there was something that sort of freaked me out. The only four-legged client at the surgery was an Elkhound pup! Norwegian Elkhounds are not a popular breed here in Meath.

As always any and all comments are appreciated by me, and Ellie.

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Update on Bob

Mr Bob is becoming a grumpy demanding old dog! No other way to put it, I am afraid to say he is relishing the role. If there were a doggy version of Father Ted, he would be Father Jack!

He doesn’t call for whiskey though he did lick some off my fingers with great enthusiasm which would indicate that if a bowl or glass were offered it would not be refused.

Bob still makes everyone smile, as he plods about the house, walking under the visiting Brooke (Greyhound of a very leggy variety) as though she were not there. His meds have increased a little and on each occasion, I call to the vets to get a new batch, they express their surprise and delight that he is still king of the castle. I have attached a few photos of the grumpy, sometimes smiling old dog. Please note I did try bribery to get him to look at the camera, but…

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I am not looking at the camera

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I refuse to say cheese

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Who wrote this book?

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Caring for a Dad and a Bob.

One question about sit and stay and ageing.

As carer to one 86 year old dad and one 98 years old Bob I have discovered they have one thing in common, they can move like Ninjas.

Ask Dad to wait for a second while you grab a coat for him and when you turn around he has not only calmly gone outside but left his Zimmer behind him.

Tell Bob to sit and stay while you open the gate to bring in the bin and bam – he has calmly walked through it and is making his way to whatever house the delicious scent of cooking is wafting from.

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Trouble is – how can you give out to either of them? Besides they won’t listen!

Curiosity

Now that the elder dog (Bob) no longer can walk beyond the end of the next house’s driveway, Ellie’s morning walks are a little more varied. However, we do see some curious things as we saunter along.

Take this pair, they would not stop following us or cock a doodle dooing!

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Ellie shook her head at me and moved on.

Then we spotted this guy sitting at the side of the road:

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She positively glared at him and turning on her heel walked home for breakfast!

A picture tells a story.

Sit and stay is a useful tool, especially when this collie likes to explore. (There were a lot of cars around.)

ellie in trailer 1Judy, the black labrador, appreciates a rest and will sit and stay forever.

 

 

She, was taught by the best sitter of them all,

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BOB

Hot days, Cool dogs.

August is in and the days are rolling by, Bob is astounding everyone with his determination to reach his 14th birthday. It helps that he avoids exercise, seeks the coolest place in the garden or house and ignores those visitors who have a high energy output.

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We abandoned him last night to have a rare night out. We packed a picnic, rug, fold up seats and went to Tullynally Castle located just outside of Castlepollard. The aim of the evening was to be entertained by a Sherlock Holmes who dun it play. And entertained we were. So much so that few photos were taken. The evening was balmy, warm and not too sunny, perfect for eating and relaxing. The play was fast paced, funny and well supported by the enthusiastic munching audience.img_20180805_234228_9231074686668.jpg

 

Training in extreme weather

Irish heatwaves are a rare thing, but 8 weeks into extremely sticky heat and we are experiencing problems. For me and the four dogs, training now takes place at unlikely hours or at unlikely venues. We try to vary it as much as possible. Most days they are each given a task to do and so trained individually but then if the two-legged handler sleeps late, training takes place in the river. The dogs love this but I don’t as I generally end up the wettest of the lot.

 

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Ellie is on the left on the last photo in the slides she prefers to stand on the bank and manage the recovery – this collie only gets wet as the last resort.

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What if?

These are the questions being asked by those about me, and the answers are mixed. Some from Bob and some from me. I bet you can guess who answered what..

What if the sun burns itself out?

His next in command, the moon, will take over and our lives will be mellower.

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What if it doesn’t rain before September?

Irish people will become even more disgruntled and focused on the weather? Nothing new there. Their 4 legged tail wagging friends will wallow in the shade and be content with early morning walks in the woods.

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What if Breeze the ogre moves out of the wood in search of water?

More cupcakes for little old me!

 

 

 

Weather and Dogs.

We are never happy. We, meaning Irish people, moan and groan about the weather constantly. It is always a hot topic. None more so than today, after suffering through, snow, ice and the country coming to a stop in March we are now meeting the blissful sight of sunshine, every morning.

But with temperatures tipping 32 degrees we are simply melting in the heat. Icecream sales have rocketed. Not so good is the fate of farmers who struggle with water shortages for their animals. A peat bog some distance from us has been burning for the past two days, an unheard of event.

Some of us who invested in rainwater harvesting tanks and systems are trying hard not to be smug about the large tanks of rainwater we have at our disposal.

But the question is, why isn’t everyone thinking of collecting what falls from the sky in abundance during most of the year.

Bob is the only one who snores on blissfully ignorant of all the dilemmas and debates going on around him. He continues to trundle about the house and garden, nabbing the few strawberries and raspberries that dare to ripen within his reach.  He is truly the main wonder of our world as he defies all vets prognosis and greets us each day with a smile on his face, a twinkle in his eyes and a wagging tail.

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I know she dropped one

An Irish Miracle

Yay. It is sunny.

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No need for me to wear a clown suit in this weather.

We can’t believe it. Irish people are now melting. We are starting to moan about the weather being too hot!

Ironic isn’t it?

The best news for everyone in this house is that one of our local filling stations has been declared, best supplier of tastiest icecream’s in Meath.

Only trouble is they don’t last long enough to be photographed, maybe next time I will stop eating one long enough to take a picture. In the meantime, there is always Bob, who is still checking out the strawberries, (still green) though in this photo it was a bee!IMG_8033