Friends, collies, Boots and Bingo,
I feel so much better now. I’ve never been out of it like that before and it was horrible. My good friends in Norfolk told me not to tell you about the downers and just write about the positives in my life. I think they may have a point. Even when I felt very ill there was a positive part to it. B wrapped me up in my blanket and sat down on the floor next to me, because I wasn’t strong enough to jump up onto my normal place. She stoked me all evening, making sure that TLC would pull me through and, of course, it did. David kept coming over and giving me a nice stroke too, letting me know he wanted me to get better very soon.
So, I am not going to think about these things as downers, just other experiences that help build character and measure how far I have come in adapting to my domestic life.
Visits to the VET
My first visit went OK. Well, very OK actually. I think it was a sort of meet and greet occasion and there were a few treats from all parties, so I was quite looking forward to my next visit. Holy Moses, how wrong can a young dog be? I went into the vets totally naïve and complete in every way. I’ve no idea what happened in there, but I left feeling like some essential part of me was missing, along with my innocence. I wasn’t right for a few days and then I couldn’t stop itching in very unsociable places. I had to go back again last week and was trying to keep an open mind. It didn’t seem half bad really, just a cold thing on my tummy, that was attached to the vets ears, and a bit of a jab to the neck and that was that. A treat on the way out persuaded me that it wasn’t all bad and worth keeping in my social diary. Oh, dear, dear, how I was duped? Later that day – when I was writing my last blog in fact – I was overcome with illness. I could hear B & David say something about reaction, vet and 24 hours, as I drifted in and out of sleep. I felt so rotten I couldn’t even eat my dinner. Me, Ben, refuse food, can you believe it? I know B & David were very worried because, as well as stroking me, they were very quiet. That isn’t some thing that often goes with the drinking thing. In fact, they usually become quite garrulous. I think they must love me very much.
At bed time, I was too weak to even think of sneaking up on the bed. I came to, and faded away again, all night; this was mainly because B kept shining a touch and stoking my head. It felt like a very, very long night. Eventually, it got light and we all had to get up. Blimey oh Riley, blow me down with a feather, I was nearly better. I had a lovely breakfast and even the old girl rubbed noses with me a couple of times. Now what was all that about? When we went outside it was all white, just like it was a year ago when I arrived.
Now everyone knows that dogs are sociable animals who want to be with their pack. So it’s not nice when I’m shut in the porch, or left in the hall on my own, just because my ADHD tendencies have got the better of me. It mainly happens when B comes home from work and I get so excited I can’t contain myself. I jump on the old girl and won’t let her get a look in. She, in turn, isn’t always very nice to me and it can get a bit nosy, so I end up in isolation. But, I have to tell my little pals in Norfolk, I am getting better at not repeating the pattern when I re-join the pack. I find that a prompt for me to have a lie down in my cushion works well and then a little treat is a great reinforcement. Trouble is, I still can’t remember all that when I’m SOOOO excited.
I don’t think I’m ever going to get used to having evenings in, when B or David don’t come home at night; it just isn’t right. There has been many an animal behaviourist that has made a lot of dosh by studying separation anxiety, like what I get, but it doesn’t make anyone come home sooner. By the way, it’s B who stays out the most. Just before Christmas there were lots of nights when she didn’t come home. Apparently, the work thing was to blame and she was suffering from separation anxiety herself. Then, would you believe it, she b – – – – – – – off after Christmas too, to see her family, I’m told. I just don’t know what to do with myself. I lie by the door and nothing happens. Then I lie on her side of the sofa, but to no avail, and then I just go into a big decline until she comes home. When she does come home all my ADHD tendencies are let loose, but somehow the humans seem to have developed a tolerance for them at such times. I do always end up in isolation, but it takes a lot longer to get there. David tells B that I never went off my dinner and I still loved my walks, with Amber and Trevor. Well, while that might all be very true, it doesn’t mean that I don’t miss her.
Gosh, I have come to the end of the account of my life in 2015. It’s said that I’ve turned a corner and I guess that’s why I don’t end up in isolation half as much as I used to. It’s been some year and I’ve got to like it here, so I might stick around for a bit.
I am very, very, very excited about 2016, because we really are going to start our Munro walking in the spring. I’ve had to cut out a couple of verys from my excitement, in the sentence above, because there are going to be some mountains I can’t do. This has something to do with being on a lead and possibly pulling B off steep edges which – apparently – wouldn’t be very pleasant. B is going to make sure we do all the easier Munros first and who knows, as I mature, I might even be able to contain myself among the woolly things. So, watch out for my blog which, from now on, is going to be all about how we are doing on our big adventure, up on the high hills with the wind ruffling our fur, as we make lots of money for our two good causes:
It all sounds a bit exhausting so I think I’ll just have a little lie down in the best place in the world.
Lots of love