I just love these, don’t you? Animals give us so much fun and affection, and to top it all animal companions help lower blood pressure and lower the risk of dementia.
Hmm. The inspiration for the blog came from a chat with a man walking his dog. The creature in question was devouring leaves and branches. ”Does he vomit it back, or …” I said, gesturing towards the dog’s tail. We then shared our stories of mortification, rubber gloves on (if you are lucky ) trying to pull long strands of foliage out, sometimes in public.
A friend was driving off to have a much-needed break in Devon. Her dogs, Michael Foot and Neil Kinnock were not good in the car, but putting them in a crate made them howl, so they settled on the back seat. Not long after, Michael started doing the spinning he did when stressed. Unfortunately he must have eaten something bad, and the spinning combined with an acute attack of diarrhea. You’ve heard the expression “When the **** hits the fan?”. Very apt. She was on the motorway. A stop at a service station to try and clean herself and the car windows is something she still has nightmares about.
One of my past dogs got a nasty rash “down there”. The vet was a new rather stern woman, who I felt disapproved of me. She emphasised that the prescribed cream had to be applied to every nook and cranny twice daily. Two days later I was back, asking if there was a spray version. Trying to explain, scarlet- faced, that Bill’s reaction whilst being treated was more than I could cope with just made her glare at me even more.”Don’t you have a man who will do this?” Although I was alone at the time, I did indeed have a couple of good male pals, but I somehow felt that asking them to come round to do this task might be stretching friendship too far.
It’s not just dogs who can cause mayhem. My son and his wife have several rescue cats. One of their first was a beautiful creature. Someone told them they should enter her into a local cat show. They did for a bit of fun, and she won. The day of the regional final came, and they washed and brushed her. Watching from her basket was another cat, her best friend. My son went to get the cat carrier, prompting “plain cat” to go on the attack. Instead of spending the day at the event they were at the vets, the beauty queen missing an ear and clumps of fur. That was the one and only time they ever fought.
When my son was small we had a hamster, called Hammy. He escaped one night, and went rogue. Food we left was taken, but we never spotted him. Weeks passed. One night lying in bed I heard noises. I traced these to under the bed. My ex got a torch, spotted a movement. Hammy had chewed into the mattress and made a cosy nest inside a cup-shaped spring. Nothing would entice him out. Hubbie decided enough was enough. He shoved his hand in the nest, and next thing he’s hopping round the room, naked, with an enraged hamster, long rodent teeth stuck in his thumb. I don’t know what upset him most, the injury and subsequent infection, or the fact that I cried with laughter throughout. God,I loved Hammy.
Dogs in particular are said to be great for improving your social life. Depends on the dog. Among our pack there have always been some so outrageously troublesome that we steer clear of the popular dog-walking routes. Instead we join some other pariahs on a big meadow, where we can all keep our distance, and instead of enjoying conversations we share rueful smiles and waves.
Animals are so loyal we tell each other. There are some touching videos online, of pets welcoming Dad or Mum back from war zones. Spock gets this treatment when he comes back with the paper. I on the other hand can be gone days, and don’t merit a glance on my return.There’s loyalty for you.
Well,I think I am ready for a coffee, and what better to accompany it than the one where the parrot is telling off the dog for barking-classic! What’s your favourite?