Well Hello,

 

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… and a very warm welcome to my dog blog. I’m so pleased that you’ve found me. I do hope you will enjoy reading about the trials and tribulations of my great adventure. I would love it if you joined in the saga by dropping me a line in the comments box. As you will see I’m going to need all the support I can get.

this my v. v. v big tail!

I started my blog in 2015 as a  young orphan puppy, from West Cumbria in the United Kingdom. It records how –  by walking over 1,000 miles and climbing the 282 Scottish mountains over 3.000 feet (The Munros) – I aim to raise £32,000 for two v. v. v good causes. I have promised not to use any of the dosh for even a tiny morsel of a treat, how hard is that?   Me, an agile young collie and my person – a creaky aging thing (called B) – aim to complete the task by the time I am 10 and she is 70. We are to spend many hours in some of the most wonderful and  remote parts of the UK: walking, camping, eating, drinking, writing and growing ever closer and closer.

Scary map of 52 Munros completed, and those still to do 235!

This is our story from a canine perspective for a change.

The human story is very slow, but you can try to access it here and join the group: 

Facebook – Mucky Boots and Flawless Paws

The money we raise will be spilt between a charity for search and rescue dogs, and Canine Partners, which trains assistance dogs to  support disabled people. These dogs are sooooooo clever. This is Bumble and Sandra’s story. I am in love with Bumble.

SANDRA BELL AND BUMBLE – Partnership study

There are film clips of the clever canines at work below.  If after watching them you think what amazing creatures we dogs really are, and you wanted to support their work, you could always drop me a penny or two for my fundraising, just here :

Munro challenge doggy bag fund – just giving

Please join in the chat, by adding your thoughts below and become part of the adventure. It will give me encouragement and I’m going to need it, by the bucket full

By the bye, all my blog posts are here, on my home page, but I have other more specific pages. You just need to click a mouse (ouch!), on the menu below my lovely photo at the top, to access them:

  • Ben Speak – Understand the dogisms, and the odd philosophical musing in my blog.
  • Ben’s Annual Reviews – A summary of my little world, one post per year.
  • Ben’s Reads – My gift of reading just for you, in my recommended reads.
  • Ben’s Team – A slide show of those in commerce giving me a paw up.
  • Ben, The Dog Poet – check out my back log of verse and doggerel.
  • Constitution/Donate/Contact  Check out my credentials, donate, or contact me.
  • Doggy Dementia – Ben’s top tips – Written in tribute to our old girl, to help others.
  • Munro Posts – All my Munro posts, copied and arranged in chronological order from the start to finish, in one place.

You tube – Canine Partners at work

You tube – Search and Rescue dog doing their thing.

One last thing. Check out the comments here to see good luck wishes from the famous: Roy Hattersley and people associated with Julia Bradbury and Elton John 🙂

That was hard work, Need sleep.

Ben Asleep
And so to bed

Love Ben xx untitled 1

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3 Weeks on…

Dear friends, followers and visitors,

I’m usually an upbeat sort of dog but losing my best friend has knocked me sideways.

I can’t pretend to be happy anymore and, apparently, my people are looking for a new companion to help me out, sooner than they would have chosen. Sorry it’s such a sad poem this week, in response to Colleen’s weekly poetry challenge as I lay bare a lost canine soul. Never, ever, believe we don’t experience loss as a great sadness. Our memories linger so long because our sense of smell is so acute; our friends are all around us and we don’t understand what has happened.

For my soul mate – Maisie
(6th April 2003 – 3rd September 2018)

Maisie for Bens blog

Chiming hearts persist
Defining purgatory;
Loving equals hurt.
I plummet, my core objects
So that comfort mimics salt.

Ben the v. v. v sad dot poet© 2018

See what Colleen’s other poet’s (for that’s what we are) have been up to here

Love Ben x

Dog poet flies

Well hello,

and a v. v. v big thank you for dropping by to read my blog. This is my entry for Colleen’s weekly poetry competition   The two words, to be integrated synonymously this week are Vigor and energy.                                                    These words speak straight to my soul. My poem is about my very best favourite thing. No photo this week. I thought I’d let your imagination join me in mid air 😁

A bolt of lightening

Zealous focus on ball

Four legs moving … fast!

By Ben, the dog poet © 2018

NB – You can find out about last weeks poet of the week and read all the other poets contributions here

Love Ben xx

 

Dog poet remembers

Hello, and a big thank you for visiting my blog.

This is my entry for Colleen’s 100th poetry challenge To mark this auspicious occasion Colleen has suggested that we choose our own two prompt words, to be used synonymously in the poem.

This was very easy for me because of the big sad event that happened this week, when our old girl, and my best friend, Maisie, had to be put to sleep at wonderful age of 15 years and three months. However, I don’t want to take away from the great poetry event by being down in the mouth. My people told me we have to remember all the good times, so my poem is about that, though it is v.v. v hard.

My words are: joy and remember. 

An animal brain
Codes sensory stimuli
For rapid recall,
Blissful golden memories
Compensate now my friends gone.

Frost, cold on my paws,
Reminds me. Summer, mown grass
Smelling like nectar.
Autumn floodlights, tugging sticks.
Happy sunlit days of yore.

By Ben, the dog poet  ©2018

Scroll down for what all the two-legged Poets contributed last week.

Love Ben xx

Smorgasbord End of Summer Party – Afternoon Tea – Colleen Chesebro, Sue Hampton, Jane Gogerty, Norah Colvin, Jane Risdon, Wendy Janes, Gigi Sedlmayer, Jena C. Henry and Darlene Foster

via Smorgasbord End of Summer Party – Afternoon Tea – Colleen Chesebro, Sue Hampton, Jane Gogerty, Norah Colvin, Jane Risdon, Wendy Janes, Gigi Sedlmayer, Jena C. Henry and Darlene Foster

OMG. Look what elevated company a dog poet has been invited to join. There is lot to eat and drink here, at the end of summer party, and all these fascinating writer people for a dog to meet. Just one question… who is going to stop me eating too much and keep me away from the red wine?

I’m so excited to be invited to the party I’m inclined to do a 4 step jig 🙂

Love Ben xx

 

For Maisie – “our heroine for all time”

Well hello!

how lovely of you to visit me, thank you. This is the latest offering of the dog-poet in response to Colleen’s weekly poetry challenge The two prompt words this week, to be integrated synonymously, are sad and write.

I have written this poem for my best pal and mentor, the old girl, our 15 ½ year old collie, Maisie. Her back legs have given out and she has doggy dementia – Canine Cognitive Dysfunction (CCD) is the posh name. We know she won’t be able to last much longer – but she is such a trooper and hanging in there, with the help of a harness my people have to use. These are very poignant days for all of us.

The first photo, called Maisie’s mile, was taken a month ago when she could still stand up and we had made a nice path from the door to the garden to help her.   The old girl still loves playing with her interactive, find my treat game. The second photo was taken yesterday. She got worn out looking for treats in her game and fell asleep.

My tribute predicts
– as scribbled poem quivers –
Farewell, my best friend.

By Ben, the dog poet ©2018

I have written a whole page about CCD to help other two legged things who might be wondering how are they going to cope. Please tell them all about it. It was jolly hard work.

Love Ben xx

 

 

 

 

 

Buzz, a little word in your ear

Friends, collies and little Buzz,

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A great big welcome Buzz, to your new home and the extended family. I thought I would offer you some hard learned advice from an old paw who has been there, done that and… they nearly got me to wear the T shirt.
Here are 10 top tips for dealing with the human kind during your first few weeks.

1. Suspend Disbelief

Oh Buzz, it is such a strange place that you have been catapulted into. The world of two legged things is such a mysterious cavern and all we can do is navigate the contours of their lives with charm and wit. The first lesson is pretend you know every word they say.  Cocking the head, in a display of trying to understand, seems to ignite something that might bring you a treat or two. The hard truth is that we are very good at getting to understand their language, not many of them take the time to truly understand ours.

2. Behave impeccably

Go gently into this foreign land and lure them into a false sense of security. Lots of tail wagging and doleful looks seems to do the job, in addition to a pretence of obedience: coming when you are called, sitting when commanded and that pathetic gesture of begging for treats with paw held dangling in mid air. I know it’s all a bit demeaning but it’s just a holding measure. The real fun can come when they think you are the best thing since sliced bread, whatever that means.

3. Forget the soft furnishings (for now)

However tempting they appear, stay off the soft furnishings. When to attempt the leap is a judgement call that comes with age. I always knew my bipeds were a soft touch in this department so had occupied my rightful place, on the sofa, within a couple of weeks. Word has it (from a little Norfolk bird) that your people are a little more determined. My advice is to play the long game though, if they should forget to close the living room door, JUST GO FOR IT.

buzz 1

Update for readers – clever Buzz, clearly you have done a good job, on the wrapping the humans around your little paw, offensive, and have sorted them out. I am full of admiration. GOOD ON YOU, little boy.

4. Dining In

Eat everything within sight or smell. You just never know when they’ll forget to feed you. Admittedly, it hasn’t happened to me yet but I’m not hedging my bets. How many sausages did you manage at the Barbecue last night? By the way, there’s some lovely licking to be done around that machine in the kitchen that generates heat about 6 o’clock every night 🙂

Dining Out

Don’t eat quite everything within sight or smell. The lovely full plates at the table next to yours are definitely off bounds. Just Let your people know what a struggle it is to contain your interest and what embarrassment you are saving them from. After that juicy treats are bound to come quick and fast.

5. Remember the Ann Robinson Manoeuvre

Go for the weakest link. There always is one. Do the adorable eye contact bit. Stick to them like super glue and, if they dare to say NO, look like you have never, EVER, been so offended.

6. Best boy

Don’t offend the guests. You can get away with so ooooo much if you behave nicely when the visitors arrive. Let’s face it, your people want to show you off as the best thing since… well, that bread thing again. Let them down and you’ll be toast. Play up and play their game. It will give you so much mileage for mischief later on (hee, hee).

7. Transport captain

Try your very, very best not to correct the driver. I know, I know…  it’s very scary and they often go the wrong way – mainly to the shops, instead of the park. Later on you can correct their woeful mistakes. I find that a paw on the drivers shoulder brings them up with a start. I think that’s what’s called a back bark driver.

8. The Queen’s Head

Don’t attack the postie. It’s brilliant fun later but, wait until you have got your self under the duvet every night. Then it’s the right time to test out the tenderness of the ankles sent by the Royal Mail. If however, the wait is too frustrating go for the mail itself instead. I’ve found that chewing up the brown envelopes doesn’t provoke too much recrimination.

9. Cuddle up

Don’t forget the cuddles. It has to be admitted that this is a win, win situation but don’t ever let on that you love it too.  There’s a thing called unconditional love that we are meant to specialise in. Don’t, whatever you do, let them know that there are strings attached. They roll over and give us what we want anyway, if you abide by the rules above.

10. Don’t forget the bard

During this early, trying period, retain your dignity. Never forget that you are observing these cardinal rules so that, in a little while, you can assert your true personality: DIGGING, SNAPPING, BARKING, RUNNING OFF, GENERALLY PLAYING MAYHEM… By this time you will be able to do whatever you like WITH IMPUNITY.
“This above all: to thine own self be true”.

From Ben to Buzz

I can’t wait to meet you. Do drop me a bark in the comments box below to let me know how you are getting on.

In the meantime, must sleep.

SF 1
And so to bed!

Lots of love
Ben xx0

 

 

 

 

 

#Tanka, dog poet tells the time

Hello,

how lovely of you to visit me, thank you. This is the latest offering of the dog-poet in response to Colleen’s weekly poetry challenge The two prompt words this week, to be integrated synonymously, are love and time.

You can read all about my v. v. v big adventure by visiting my home page  and also, my Munro blogs. All my poems are here dog-poets page

 

SIRIUS
Sirius the dog star – the brightest star in the sky

Dogs don’t own watches.
My guide is the sun’s compass
And the earth’s orbit –
Long days on the mountains
Kissed by Sirius in sleep.

By Ben, the dog poet © 2018

http://earthsky.org/brightest-stars/sirius-the-brightest-star

There are so many great poets contributing to this weekly challenge

This link will take you to last week’s Tanka Tuesday Poetry Recap featuring the work of poets from around the globe.

Love Ben xx0