Looking back: Heston

I was looking back over old posts from last year with pictures of my lovely Heston and it’s amazing how much he’s both grown and developed (or not!) He was such a little puppy when I first got him.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThis was the photo that made Verity and I fall in love with our boys. I’d like to remind everyone that V asked for the runty one. She likes runts. I’m not sure what that says about her strapping husband. Perhaps his brother is a giant.

DSCF2271And on the first day, he could sleep under the couch with his little feet and his puppy ears. He slept most of the day and played the rest of it. He even played with Tilly, which doesn’t happen so much these days.

He could fit on the couch with my little American cocker, no problem.

heston and tillly

And he had a love for his brother that I think only brothers can really share, where you’re the same kind of size as each other and you can play hard, knowing each other’s limits. They only fell out one time and even straight after, they were friends.

DSCF2325We had all kinds of speculation about how big they’d end up, and whether their ears would stand or not. Heston’s sometimes do, and they always do when carried by the wind.

He has the same collar, on the biggest setting. It was on the smallest setting here. And the biggest surprise was how feathered their tails got. Here, it’s just a normal dog tail. He looks so little with his baby fur and his big body and little head. He was about 12 weeks old in the photo below.


I can’t even really remember his tail feathering out – or when he started to get his big dog coat. The photo below is Heston’s first off-road experience in September, and his tail is starting to fill out. Definitely not labrador as the vet first thought. And probably a lot of border collie. Still looks more like a miniature Groenendaele crossed with a miniature flat-haired retriever as well. It’s like someone thought ‘Let’s take the three most energetic dog breeds we can find and make an unruly mixture of them.’ And this is what we got. He definitely does the collie headtilt in a ‘what you talkin’ bout Willis’ kind of a way.

DSCF2805This was the first off-lead experience and Heston realised that he LOVED water. Not only that, doesn’t bat an eyelid when there’s gunshots right up close. Cyclists coming past the house, well they just might steal from my dead corpse the amount Heston barks, but gunshot, well, that’s just the sound of the forest.

Charlton and Heston

By the end of the year, Heston has full-on feather tail and reached 18 kilos. He’s one heavy dog. He’s now 24. He is a beast. He likes to jump on top of me at 6.45am and this is how I know his weight.


His favourite things, in no particular order, are: puddles, rivers, lakes, snow, digging, burying balls, barking at cyclists, eating tomatoes, chasing chickens, getting up at precisely 6.45am, sleeping under the bed, going on car journeys, his lead, his rope, his selection of popped footballs, chasing the lawnmower and trying to play with it, visitors who’ve been here for more than two days.


He is not a fan of men, tall men, very tall men, men who he forgets, the breton spaniels up the road, rainy non-walk days, peppers, apples and walking to heel. It is hard when you are a bouncy dog with a slow owner.

hestonaprilHe is also not a fan of lie-ins.

IMG_0382He is a very energetic dog and sometimes this drives me to despair. He also has learned to bark at every dog he meets, simply because we must walk past 20 houses where that’s what the dogs do. It’s sad. He is generally very good when he meets new dogs though if Tilly barks, he barks. She’s definitely boss.

IMG_0625And he still loves to play all day. He just can’t fit under the couch any more. God love the Heston. He is a funny, crazy, bouncy creature. I just wish he would bark less at people. I sense this may take some time in the unlearning. I also wish the following things weren’t prompts for Heston thinking we are going on a walk: me putting my socks on; me putting flip-flops on; me even looking at my boots; me picking up my keys; 8pm. 7am. Do a thing twice and it becomes a signal to my funny boy. Bless him!


6 thoughts on “Looking back: Heston

  1. Heston seems like a very nice dog. We had one for 13 years. We said she was a doberdor (we thought she was a cross between a doberman and an labrador). She was a bit too serious as a guard dog, but so obedient and such a strong feelings for her pack of humans! For 2 years she was afraid of water then she realized she could swim and you could not keep her away from water.

  2. Hi Emma,
    How lovely a record of his journey in life so far.
    Both Charlton and Heston were very lucky to be adopted by two such wonderful people as you and Verity.
    I can understand the choice of runt of the litter for Verity as I have always been a champion of the underdog !!! hence my choice of careers in life.
    And Verity was full term and dismature at birth and only 5lb in weight after all !!!?? so a “runt” herself, though lovely with it.
    Thanks for looking after the various pets so I got to see her which is always a pleasure especially as I do not know when I will get to France again.
    Love you all very much

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