As some of you know, our second guide dog puppy, Vinnie, went into early training in February because he was a particularly challenging little boy who was actually diagnosed by a vet as being hyperactive (well, we could have told him that!) Vinnie was on the go ALL the time, except when he was asleep at night. He rarely napped for very long during the day and was always demanding our attention. Needless to say, he wore us out!
Since we’re having some home improvements carried out, we thought we’d take a break from puppy walking, but wanted to keep our hand in so agreed to do some temporary boarding. This involves taking puppies when their puppy walkers are on holiday or need a break for any reason. The pups would be with us for a weekend, a week, or maybe longer, and we thought it an ideal arrangement as we could manage puppy commitments between scheduled works to our home.
We’ve had two pups so far and absolutely love boarding. Our first was Oak, a beautiful year-old Golden Retriever. A calm boy, if a little sensitive, we were worried he wouldn’t settle very well away from his human mum and dad. We needn’t have worried, he took to us immediately and was an absolute joy to have around. He loved his big teddy and his Frisbee which, as you can see, he carried to the park himself. At home, he largely entertained himself and was one of the most undemanding dogs we’ve ever known. Everyone who met him fell in love. Oak stayed with us for almost three weeks, and we loved every minute of having him. Although I was very sad to see him go, it wasn’t quite such a wrench as he was with us such a short time. Besides, less than two days later, we learned another little cutie was headed our way.
And what a cutie she is. Holly is a four month old Labrador and again settled almost immediately. She is such a good girl. Very dignified and steady, she’s destined to be quite the lady. She gives this cute breathy little bark to go outside for her business, walks into her crate of her own accord to sleep at night, we’ve never heard her whine or cry and, like Oak, entertains herself much of the time. It hasn’t taken her long to get her paws under the table though, and we’re learning that she can be a bit of a madam if she doesn’t get her own way. Like all puppies, she loves to play and shows her displeasure with several of those breathy barks (which intensify quite rapidly) if we stop playing with her and she doesn’t like that idea. But since she’s so adorable, and has AJ wrapped around her little paw, we usually give in and keep playing ( shhh, don’t tell our supervisor). We have Holly until Tuesday when she goes home, but I don’t think I’ll have too much time to miss her desperately, because Woody, a five month old Retriever/Labrador, arrives the following Sunday!
During our five puppy-free days, we’re due to have the downstairs doors replaced, plus heading off for a sightseeing/shopping break to Birmingham and the Midlands. Visits to art galleries are on the cards (feeding my love of the Pre-Raphaelites) plus a trip to a designer shopping outlet for a new suit for AJ and linen/bedding for me – and maybe a little handbag or two 🙂