Friday, 7 November 2008

Where have all the squirrels gone?

I went for a walk to one of my favourite parks this week and was VERY disappointed by the lack of squirrels, despite me pretty much stalking around in a low crouch THE WHOLE WAY. So if I wasn't scaring them off, where have they gone? Well - I have two hypotheses (am trying to be more scientific B3!).

One: Squirrels are spotlight-grabbing media-loving wannabees. The BBC is filming 'Autumnwatch' locally on Brownsea Island. The island is famous for its red squirrel population. Clearly the local greys have got themselves a bad dye job and shipped off to the island to join in the fun.

Two: They have been roasted and eaten on a Portuguese Fireplace. Whilst on a walk in the New Forest last weekend I happened across some young boys skinning and roasting squirrels. I would have joined in but prefer to do the skinning myself.

Either way it is bad news for the local dog population. Perhaps now Autumnwatch is over they'll come back to their home parks. In the meantime I'm having to pretend that small fluffy dogs and birds are worth chasing, but it's not really the same.

Monday, 3 November 2008

October at Wasdale Head

I've just got back from my hols in the Lake District. The Lake District is a very beautiful place, very open and great to run about in, except for the perplexing thing that you seem to have to be on the lead all the time. Perhaps it has something to do with these woolly things on the hills?

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The views from the top of the mountains were awesome, when mum let me get anywhere near enough an edge to see. You can just about make out our little white cottage in the valley below us on this pic:

It's very windy on the hills though - plays havoc with a man's jowls!

It wasn't all extreme hills though, we did find some pretty valleys and EVEN some areas where I was allowed off the lead.


The best bit of the trip was meeting the very famous Redgirls! I behaved like a true gent and even lent Berta my (spare) coat when it got a bit wet and miserable.

Berta took a real liking to my dad.

We went for a nice walk and then to a pub for lunch (appropriately called the Dog and Gun). I have corrupted the Redgirls cos it turned out to be their first pub outing. Just giving them a taste of city life. We even went into some SHOPS! In fact I'm very jealous cos they got some fab new coats and I really do want one. I'm still pretty skinny so the absence of any body fat means I do feel the cold a bit. Maybe I can get one for Christmas?

The Redgirls liked the open spaces the best and took off playing madly. I wasn't going to join in with all that female play so let them get on with it.

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Here's me with my mum - turns out the latest issue of Your Dog magazine had a walk in the valley next to ours. This is me and mum on the bridge that they featured. Maybe if we send it in they will publish it!?

Here's me and my dad doing the atmospheric brooding men shot.

Friday, 26 September 2008

Birthday boy

Happy 2nd birthday to me! Sorry I've been so quiet recently. I've been poorly (again!) and I've been a bit embarrassed to tell anyone :-( I had an upset tummy and apparently have inflammatory bowel disease so have just started taking lots and lots of pills which is quite rubbish. Here's me modelling a rather fetchingly coloured bandage after my endoscopy. You can see I've gone a bit size zero again although my pills ought to fix that. I'm VERY hungry if anyone wants to send anything? Aunty Di has been great with the advice and I'm hoping to meet the Redgirls in person (YAY!) when I go up north next month.


In the meantime I've had a busy time since I last posted. I had my half bro Rufus over to play with my best buddy Radar - here is us making John stand still at the beach. Devil of a job, keeping those humans still you know. It took all our combined energy.

And best of all we went to see Aunty Kate with Dexter and, the best Vizsla in the world, Ditto! Ditto was very odd, she was playing all hard to get and kept curling her lip at me but I knew it was all for show really. We had great fun bouncing in the fields together.

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So I'm back and bouncy and trying to persuade dad that getting a buddy is a really good idea. Look at Rocket! Look at Ellie! He's not so sure though. So we might have to wait a while :-(

Sunday, 10 August 2008

My first rosette

Last weekend I went to my first ever show! It was a local show for the Margaret Green Foundation - an animal rescue centre. I entered the 'any variety - sporting' class with about 30 other dogs, including 3 other Vizslas! I wasn't too into this showing lark - it's pretty boring and then some weird person grabs you and then you get to run around and jump up and kiss mum before standing around being bored again. Mind you - something must have gone right cos I got picked for the 'line up'. This was also quite boring so I had a bit of a clean up whilst we stood there.

That extra bit of preening obviously paid off cos I got the fifth rosette! The guys who came higher up in the placing were obviously pros so I was quite pleased with myself!

Shame mum cut off my nose in this one though.

My buddy Radar got fourth in the 'most handsome dog' class too - after clearing up the prizes we went off and did what Vizslas do best. Ran around like mad idiots on a moor and then conked out under the table whilst the folks ate pub grub :-)

Wednesday, 30 July 2008

Me and Radar

On Monday I went to Radar's house to play. Mum had a busy day so I got to spend it with Radar and Juliet. We had the best time after getting over our macho manliness and played for HOURS. I'm the one with the shorter tail :-)



After all that playing we needed to cool down a bit in Radar's fab paddling pool. I'm going to need to work on the folks to buy me one of these! I was quite keen on snorkelling but secretly I was trying to pull out the plug before Juliet cottoned on to my game!

Tuesday, 22 July 2008

Flyball

We started flyball last night. We didn't realise we were going to, as we had just gone along to meet the group, but the organiser kindly invited us to join in and we had a blast! I had figured out the jumps by the end of the session, but the floor was just FAR too interesting to sniff in places so I didn't always retrieve the ball that quickly! It was in something called an 'indoor school' and there were loads of good smells to discover.

I had always thought of myself as a pretty fast mover, but you should see those collies. I looked positively gangly and slow in comparison! Still, it was only my first go so i've got plenty of time to improve.

Friday, 20 June 2008

Rehab


Apparently I've got a bit of an addiction problem...


Exhibit a - the ball. Apparently I'm totally obsessed to the point of running myself to death after said ball despite getting overtired/hot etc. The close relative of the ball, the stick, has already made me poorly and it's only a matter of time before the ball gets me into trouble. Come to think of it I suppose it already has cos I had to have an op last October to remove half of a ball from my tum. Hrm. And last night dad did this particularly great throw which went into the middle of the road and I just ran right after it. Well - I think he has to share some of the blame for that. Mum wasn't there but she is still freaking out about it.

Serious recall work needed apparently. Clickerdogs is supposed to have the answers - my buddy Hamish has done well with this. Looks like it's my turn to start...

Monday, 9 June 2008

Vacation / Staycation


I had a week with my folks recently. We did a bit of 'going away' and a bit of 'staycation' (good term Brisztow!). The 'going away' bit was just for a night on a boat. I'm not a big fan of boats.

For a start they are on water - and you should see the funny things you find on the water...


...and for another thing they shut you in the bedroom when they go through 'locks' because apparently they aren't safe. It's annoying but you can bark your head off to let them know that they're just being silly - I know all about keys and locks and I've never seen a dangerous one yet.

The best bit is sitting in the captains chair and giving out orders.


The staycation happened cos the boat broke (I told you they were stoopid). So we came home and did some excellent walks around the south coast and New Forest. We have also started cycling. This is great cos now I don't have to wait whilst they catch up with me - I can trot along and they manage to keep up just fine. Why on earth didn't they figure this out before? We have nice detours to rivers to keep me cool and I have my own special water bottle that fits onto the bike. Pretty cool. When we go along roads I get attached to mum's bike using this 'walky dog' attachment. It really means she doesn't have to pedal cos I provide power assistance...particularly when we meet a squirrel...ahem.

Monday, 26 May 2008

Family gathering

Last week I went to visit my mum and dad - this is a family pic - mum has her mouth open on the left (I think she was telling me to sit still) and dad is in the middle.

I wasn't too sure about my dad - I managed a sneaky sniff though whilst he wasn't looking.

Mum didn't mind me sniffing her too much.

But she wasn't that interested in playing with me....


...however much I badgered her!

This is a video of Hanka and her pup Seeka playing with a glove.

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Saturday, 17 May 2008

Sore throat

Last night I ran after a stick in the park and it broke and went down my throat :-( I ended up in the vet's for nearly two hours - they sedated me and everyone looked down my neck to see if I was going to be ok. I've got two big cuts in my soft palate and another in my laryngopharynx. So there will be no more stick chasing I don't think - mum has certainly banned it. The annoying thing was that they didn't even throw the stick for me!

They've found me a good replacement though which they'll have to order - the 'fetchy stick' which is a stick made out of rubber with a squeaker.

I might feel a bit dumb with this in the New Forest though? Mind you - did you say a squeaker? Cooooool! And the best bit about a sore throat is bone soup. I do love that. Does anyone have any tips for things to take the hurt away?

Wednesday, 7 May 2008

Waboba ball

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I have discovered the best toy in the world. It's a ball that bounces on water called a waboba ball! Great fun for water retrieves. It keeps me cool in this hot weather we're having anyway. You do need to have a very soft mouth though - otherwise you're likely to pop it. I have a nice soft mouth apparently - I can carry fruit and barely leave a dent :-)

I don't really remember summer but it certainly slows me down if there's no water to bounce in. Not enough to stop me getting my silver good citizen certificate on Friday night though!

Thursday, 1 May 2008

Furthering my education

I went into the library yesterday to do a bit of light reading. It turns out the librarian was so taken with me that she let mum off her 10p fine. Even though I put my paws on the desk. So I've now conclusively *made* her money. What shall I spend it on?

Friday, 25 April 2008

All around exercise

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It is important not to forget about any of the muscle groups when getting back to full fitness. Here I am exercising my eyebrows. Don't underestimate the power of your eyebrows! They are particularly important for giving the cute face when food is around.

I'm progressing well with my fitness programme. We went into the New Forest after work one evening and I ran around after rabbits and pheasants for a whole hour. I don't think I stopped once. I'm feeling very full of it.

In fact I'm so full of it that I've started getting rather, ahem, affectionate towards some other dogs recently. I go quite deaf when I'm doing it and am driving mum a bit bonkers. But she was bonkers anyway. Apparently I was 'somewhat indulged' after my last op and things have to get a bit more strict for a while. Oops.

On a more serious note - my pal Radio passed away earlier this year from a condition called polymyositis. It is passed on through breeding. His folks are very keen that no dog has to go through what he did. Please read their post.

Wednesday, 16 April 2008

Health check

Last week I went to the Royal Vet College to have some tests done on my guts. I like that it was Royal - suitably fitting for me I think. I saw my friend Radio's vet so he knows a thing or two about Vizslas. So far everything has come back totally normal so mum is relieved. I'm allowed to lead a completely normal life now and eat anything, run anywhere etc. I'm catching up on some lost weeks!

Here I am at Chesil Beach - it's a funny big bank of sand that separates the sea from the land - there's this lagoon in the middle called the Fleet. It apparently used to be used by smugglers and there was a book written about it called 'Moonfleet'. I like the idea of being a smuggler but not at all sure about going on boats. Really the best bit of the trip was seeing pheasants and rabbits. Pheasants are stoopid - they just run off tooting like a train. Funny looking train.

This is the church that inspired the book Moonfleet. I don't think they'd have fitted much contraband in there!

Sunday, 6 April 2008

Snoooow!


Today my world went white. I've never really seen snow before - other than a few flakes a year ago when I was quite little.

I was quite blase about it really - I didn't go too mad or anything. I like to think I can take all these weird things that happen around me in my stride now I'm a mature 18 months. In fact I used it as a good opportunity to do a bit of posing.

And some more...

And my personal favourite...


Ok, I did like to chase the odd snowball.

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And then after all that I needed a good rest (and a bit more posing).

Friday, 4 April 2008

I'm number one!

I don't keep up with the pop charts that much so was delighted to find that a song about me is number one! It's called Hungarian Boy and could have been written for me - take the chorus for example:

'Take me to the park I want to run and play
Throw me a big stick, I can retrieve all day
I really want to....go roll in fox poo
I am your Hungarian boy...Hungarian boy....'

Well, I've achieved fame before on the web pages of the hydrotherapy pool but this is something else.

Mum say's I'm batty and am mis-hearing it. Sorry? What?

Tuesday, 1 April 2008

A busy week

It's been quite a busy week for me. I've started going out on proper walks, although I have noticed that we're avoiding most of my pals as apparently I'm not supposed to tumble around too much yet. I've got an appointment to see a specialist next week just to be sure there's nothing else going on in my guts.

I'm not the only one who's been poorly. My big buddy Radar has had lungworm. It is REALLY nasty but luckily he is going to be ok. It's quite new to the UK and apparently Southampton is a hotspot - scary as just down the road from me! Anyway apparently if you take a wormer with 'Fenbendazole' in it (think Panacur or Advocate?) you can protect yourself against it.

On top of all this I've resumed my training classes and was called 'teacher's pet' today for being such a showoff. I am getting pretty good at the heelwork and 'send away's' now but I did go a bit mental when we had to do some weaves. Oops.

As I'm now over 18 months old I've decided I must take a leaf out of Buster B. Brown's book and look at the world in a more scientific and thoughtful light. So I decided to experiment with centrifugal and centripetal force last weekend. It must finally be 'summer' again cos my buoy has appeared in the garden, although they say it won't last. This could mean the buoy or the summer - the buoy is much smaller than it used to be and has a big hole in it. In the meantime I'm enjoying my garden. But no more snail eating - no, my job as pest control agent is permanently on hold. That's how you get that pesky lungworm thing.

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Wednesday, 26 March 2008

Holidays

Hey folks - I have been on my holidays to my grandma's house whilst my folks went off doing something called 'skiing'. Skiing sounds rubbish - there are no rabbits or deer or anything. I got a bit overexcited to see them when they got home though. I raced about and bounced and ended up hurting my tail and having to go to the vet at midnight on Good Friday. Ooops. My tail cost £228 to fix - mum says it's just as well I have a third off as who knows how much it would have been if it was full ;-) Anyway - I'm just making sure we make the most of the insurance.

So apart from a few more painkillers I'm feeling much better and have started going out walkies again - yay! I went to my park for the first time today, although we did go out at quiet times to avoid my pals cos I'm supposed to take it a bit easy still. I also went to this castle place over the weekend which was great fun but must have been very drafty living there cos they only had a few walls and no roof. This is me helping to push over one of the wonky walls.

Welcome Darcy - like your blog!

Tuesday, 11 March 2008

Leave it

This is me doing a 'leave it' for 'entertainment'. Pah - have one on each paw and one on my head! It's not all boring training though - I got a new Mr Chicken to play with!

I've always been jealous of Hamish's Mr Chicken - unfortunately Mr Chicken is already in the dustbin though as I bit his head off. Well - what else are you supposed to do with chicken?

Saturday, 8 March 2008

R&R

I've had my last injection at the vet's now and have been discharged. I get to go back to my regular vet next Friday to have my stitches out and then I can start going walkies again - yay! But there's a whole lotta time between now and next Friday so we're experimenting with different ways of having fun. My favourite ways revolve around food. The clever lady in the pet shop said why didn't they stuff a big chunk of cheese inside my kong stuffaball for entertainment. This has kept me busy for about 45 minutes! Well that and watching dad mince beef for burgers :-)

Last week mum was clearing out her wardrobe and decided to throw away some old sweaters. She used to love this one and wore it all the time but it's got a big hole in the elbow. She didn't want to throw it away so I get to have it as backup for my equafleece. Not so sure about this mum. I don't think the colours are 'me'.

Wednesday, 5 March 2008

Birthday balloons

It's mum's birthday today. She says it's a good job I'm ok cos most of her presents revolve around me. I was trying to play with a balloon (popped one already - great fun) when Oscar came along and joined in. I thought if I stood very still he might not see me, but then his sister came along too - bit too scary all round.

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Tuesday, 4 March 2008

Hello all

I'm home! I'm also VERY lively. I think mum thought i'd be all pathetic and sleepy like I was the last time I had to have an op - but this time I'd had a whole night to recover and was VERY pleased to see her - I gave her my best shimmy.

I've had a hole in my insides apparently - and my guts went through it. I didn't have to have any guts removed though which is good cos I need more space for food. I've got a whole bunch of stitches and they have to be in for about 12 days or so and that means NO WALKIES. I don't know how I'm going to cope. I was ready to play with my orange rubber ring last night and that's only after one day...

Anyway I think I missed out - there were rumours of sleeping downstairs all together. Well they decided that cos I was doing so well I could sleep in my bed (some excuse about being worried I would try to jump on their bed cos I shouldn't be jumping). So I did and didn't get up ONCE in the night. I was pleased when it was breakfast time though - i'm STARVING. I get to eat FIVE TIMES A DAY for the next few days - yay!

Monday, 3 March 2008

Coming home

I've been worried sick waiting to call the vet this morning but apparently all is fine and he can come home today. I'm going to pick him up after my exam (neuroanatomy, bleurgh) at 4.25 and will have to ask her lots of questions. Although it's a bit stressful happening during exams it does mean that i'm only out for a total of two hours - one on tues, one on thurs, then Steve is off on Friday which is great so we can look after him. Again only a few hours out next week, and after that it's holidays for 3 weeks. We have a skiing holiday booked just before Easter and C was to go to his grandma's for four days but I'm not sure if we'll be doing that yet.

Already planning on setting up the sofabed as i think it may be a bit much to have him climb stairs - last time he needed to wee three times in the night because of all the medication.

Sunday, 2 March 2008

Complications

The vet called us. Turns out this is a complication of his previous surgery. As I understand it the bowel had herniated through a hole in the omentum - and there was significant inflammation and damage. She said it was a big op and that he is at risk in both the short and long term. She said it was good to have operated today and he has come round and hopefully will be coming home tomorrow, but then will have to be kept very still and quiet in order to heal. Poor boy. It's terrifying to think that this could affect him forever - hopefully that forever will be a really long time. If anyone else has heard of anything similar i'd be grateful to hear from you.

Another op

C got sick in the night and we took him to the on-call vet this morning. She thinks he has another blockage and is going to open him up again today. He was so well yesterday that it's come as a bit of a shock. Last time he'd been so poorly for so long that it was a relief to find that there was something 'obvious' wrong with him. I can't believe he needs another op only just 5 months after the first one. Will call between 3 and 4 (so that means 3.01 obviously) to find out how he's got on.

Sunday, 24 February 2008

RIP Radio

I'm sorry we only met once Radio. You were an inspiration and patient mentor. Winning the scurry with ease. Enjoy creating havoc elsewhere now.

Wednesday, 20 February 2008

Frosty mornings

It's been pretty chilly recently but I don't mind if I have my pals to play with. This is me and China.

We raced around so much I was shattered by the time I got home!

Here I am with Barney the Giant Schnauzer and China. Barney is about 3 weeks older than me and we've grown up together. Despite both being 'entire' boys we're good pals. I like Barney's brother Monty a lot too - we play together most afternoons. Yesterday we went to the golf course and a golf ball landed about 50ft in front of me. I started to race after it but three pips on the whistle stopped me in my tracks and I zoomed back to mum in a very good impression of a well behaved dog. You see I CAN do it if I want to. I just don't want to that much!

Here I'm chasing Maudy the chocolate lab.

And this is me doing a bit of posing - got to keep up with Hamish on the posing stakes!

I think it's time to go home now. And sleep all day after all that fun.