This is Ralf. Say hello to Ralf. Will tell you all about Ralf another time. I seem to have missed a Monday somehow – not surprising! – and the summer is almost gone.
Just as a follow-up, wanted to share some news I got about Smoke yesterday. I obviously don’t need to say how marvellous this news is. It gives me hope for all dogs who have been in refuges across the world for years upon end.
“He’s good. And his name has changed to Scratch – don’t ask me why, it
just happened! A bit shy – he has to be coaxed a lot, but he is very
happy being stroked, having an ear scratch etc etc. For some reason
he has taken up residence in the hall – he has his bed there, but we
are gradually moving it closer and closer to the sitting room so
hopefully he will be esconced in the warm bit of the house when the
cold weather comes and all doors to the hall are firmly shut to
He still has the odd accident – usually a widdle during the night –
but the floors are tiled so not a problem. He isn’t part of the pack
yet with Eco and Sophie, but there is a lot of sniffing and
tail-wagging going on so I’m just leaving them to sort themselves out.
Sophie had a bit of green-eye (which surprised me a bit – she is
usually the first to make friends) but we do equal love – just wish I
had 3 hands for 3 simultaneous ear scratches! They co-exist happily
enough, but they aren’t friends yet – and may never be, but they all
appear happy enough which is fine.
We have a system where we set out together for walks, and someone
takes the Labs on for a big walk, while Scratch has a gentle amble
home – he makes me laugh because he is always much more enthusiastic
when he knows he’s on his way home. And he is not at all impressed
when the walk home involves stopping to pick blackberries – he sits,
looks at me with those fabulous eyes and does ‘that’ sigh ……
He only snaps if someone goes for his neck – either grabbing his
collar, or going in for a hug, so I have instructed everyone,
including visiting kids not to bother him too much – a stroke or pat
on the way past is fine, but he is not Eco or Sophie (who are so soppy
it is embarrassing) and can’t be treated the same way. Thus far, no
more snapping ….. and if I do need to round him up if some halfwit
leaves the gate open, I just grab the lead and click it on and he is
fine. We use a harness for walks which I think he finds a bit more
comfortable and there is no problem getting it on.
Taking him to my vet next week for a controle technique – decided to
wait until everyone back at school – he has no pressing health issues
I am aware of – still has the shakes, but that seems to be connected
to needing food, so he gets 3 small meals a day which has helped. He
does drink a massive amount, and his wee is clear which doesn’t seem
entirely right, so I will flag that at the vet. And get his nails cut
which might cut down on the slithering on our hard floors – we have
fixed a runner for the 6 or stairs up to our quarters which has helped
Will send some photos once Maya is back from the UK – she swiped my
camera and I have a granny phone!
Hope your lot are doing well, and everyone at the refuge are well and happy.”
If only every dog ended up in such a wonderful, caring and sensitive home!