Do the Hokey-Poké, that’s what it’s all about

imageA strange thing has happened. After mostly walking each day, taking in the whiffs from the park across the road, and the woodlands around them, we’ve started going to new places. Small human has started coming too. He must’ve heard that I’m enjoying looking for new whiffs. I thought whiffs were just my thing, but perhaps not. Funny business.

The strange thing is though he seems totally blasé about any really fruity whiffs we come across in the hedges or the gutters. Instead he is staring at what I think is a tiny TV.  He wanders along sometimes making sudden excited stops and then catching up with me and big human again.

There are others we see when we’re out now, humans we’ve never seen on our walks before. They are also staring at their tiny TVs too?  And judging by their translucent appearance I don’t believe they’ve ever actually been on a walk before. Not during the day, anyway.

I did start to wonder if my humans had changed my name. They still say Daisy a lot, but I hear the word Pokémon too – is this another dog?  Surely there’d be a whiff. I don’t make out I understand it, but if we’re out looking for a dog called Pokémon, then frankly I hope we never find him, as these walks in different places are the best!

Sunshine, String and Sushi

Summer is here and it occurs to me, as I bask in the warm grass, that I haven’t written for such a long time. This is because mischief is extremely time consuming. If I had a passport, my occupation would read Head of Mischief. I would work at the Ministry of Mischief and dogs would travel far and wide to attend my canine courses. I’ve seen human staring at her electronic square of boredom (it’s me who’s bored when she stares at it, not her, apparently). Sometimes I see her staring at TED Talks. They’re rubbish, except one that was about a dog. I have decided that I should start DOG Talks. They would all be about me, presented by me, and I would watch them over and over again.

If you must, go and watch my favourite dog themed TED Talk here… https://www.ted.com/talks/billy_collins_two_poems_about_what_dogs_think_probably

My mischief manifests itself in a variety of ways. I just call it living, or being me, but human seems to give it all more meaning than that. It’s funny. I often hear here telling others not to ‘overthink it’, but that is precisely what she’s doing with me.

For example, it was lunchtime one day, and human along with the smaller versions were sat around, with plates full of magical whiffs that made me wonder. She keeps on about always trying new things. She is a bore. I like old things. The whiff of an old thing is generally much more pungent than a new thing. A good pungent whiff can make your head fuzzy and your throat go tight, and can even make your belly fizz like a trip in the footwell of a fast car, yet it still makes you go back for another go. But not this day. A new thing with a whiff was where it was at! A new thing lay on that plate.

The small boy can often take ages to eat. Sometimes I don’t know if he’s slowed down so much I can’t see him chewing, or if he’s actually stopped. Either way, that whiff was driving me crazy. The tremble I sometimes get in my wonky leg was out of control. At last, I couldn’t stop myself. I had edged so close to the boy’s plate my nose was practically upon it. With one swift movement teamed with a powerful inhale, I sucked up what turned out to be a thing called soosheee. And it was heavenly. The shouting that surrounded me dulled, as all I could concentrate on was an explosion of whiffs on my tongue. What I’m saying is, I liked it.

Another time, when I was just being me, I found some wonderful toys left out for me (or so I thought). I’d seen human try to conjure up something with a ball of string and a little metal stick. Sometimes it would go well, and she’d photograph her piece of nonsense and sometimes it would go badly, and she’d say some bad words in a grumpy voice and fetch something to eat instead. On this day her strings (in lots of pretty colours) lay across a low table. The table is just at the right height for me to see what’s on there, so you can understand what an easy mistake this next bit would be.

No one was around. I thought that because they’d all desserted me, they’d left out this mass of stringy fun for me to play with. Another mistake apparently. I had the most fantastic stringy time and made much more interesting things than human ever did. But she doesn’t have an eye for such abstract beauty, and pulled my work apart and stuffed it (angrily) in a bag that I can no longer reach.

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Mischeif is good. Mischief is fun. I recommend everyone dabbles in at least a little mischief. Even if it doesn’t make others smile, if it makes you smile, then that is enough.

 

 

A lingering whiff of 2015

It’s been a while, eh? I’ve settled into a lovely routine of wondering, walking and whiffing. It’s a dog’s life. Well this dog, anyway. Walks have become shorter which is bothersome, and the sky isn’t there when I look up, much of the time – funny business.

But I sense a change coming. The humans have a tree in the house. I think they’ve finally lost their minds. I’ve seen it coming for a while. There are jingly bells attached to so many things that you only need to brush past an open door, or the back of a chair, and something will jangle and chime, that used to be silent.

I thought I’d sum up my thoughts on the closing of a year, and see what we’ve got to look forward to in 2016.

I started the year in a different home with a different name, different people and a totally different way of life. Then these crazy-tree-in-the-house humans arrived, and took me away. I remember snarling and snapping my lovely sharp teeth at them all. I feared that just when it couldn’t get any worse, it might! Actually, these weirdos are ok. They feed me roast dinners, I have lovely meaty rice and pasta dinners cooked for me much of the time. I have toys. I have fresh blankets whenever I make them whiff. I have a thing they call ‘sweeeeeeteeeeez’ however unlike the sweeties I know, they generally taste of beef or cheese. I’m not complaining – I just think they’re idiots who don’t know a sweetie when they see one.

I tweet. I blog. I am very much a 21st century pooch. I love the simple things in life too. A stick. An open car window. Scratchy floor tiles to slide along. The postman. Sausages. I’m a lucky dog. I seem to have fallen on my feet. All four of them.

My hopes for the New Year? More of the above, I would think. Cuddles. Walks. I’d like to see the sky make a comeback. One-eyed dog. Skip. Monty and Henry. More sticks.

Dog bless us…everyone.

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Furry Godmother

I am delighted to report to you that we’ve not played hide and seek once in the last couple of weeks. That’s so last season. We’ve had some lovely walks and I’ve heard human talking about me a lot – and always the same story. Clearly that game affected her more than I realised. Gradually, the story gets a little shorter each time I hear her tell it.

Strangely, we took a drive to a new place recently, where she told a stranger the story! (Is she getting paid to tell people?) Well, I say a stranger. She was lovely. She had a small house at the back of a shop, and there were other dogs there. As we arrived, a dog was leaving. A fluffy, soft looking dog. It looked like a cartoon dog – when they look so fluffy they can’t be real. It was real though, and the reason I knew? The WHIFF!

Before I knew it, I was being abandoned at the stranger’s small house. Human said goodbye and smiled a lot as she walked away. Funny business.

While human was gone, and after a brief time I spent hiding beneath a chair, assessing the situation, stranger cleaned and brushed and trimmed and pulled and smoothed and tidied and squirted me. All over. A lot. It was terribly weird. But weirdly enjoyable. Not only that, but stranger fed me some delicious chicken. What IS this strange place? Is this my furry godmother?

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Human returned later. I wonder if she was just trying to teach me a lesson? Ah well, I probably asked for it.

i can tell you that many photographs were taken – it’s a pity we don’t have scratch and sniff technology as I would really love to share this unusually fragrant whiff with you. I think, on reflection, I rather loved my visit to a stranger, and suggest that any other dogs reading this, should insist their humans take them to see her too.

Once in a a while, fragrant is good.

(Note from human: Furry Godmother is actually Debbie at Clip and Dip dog groomer’s based at the back of DH Water Gardens at Wyevale Garden Centre, Sherfield-on-Loddon… http://www.clipanddip.co.uk and I also recommend it to all dogs reading this…and their humans.)

Alphabetical Hide & Seek – “H”

imageIt’s been an interesting week. I’ve discovered a whole new world of whiffs I didn’t even know about, and have seen plenty that makes me wonder.  And human tells me that hundreds of people know who I am (I’m not sure of the point she’s making). Picture the scene. It was Wednesday lunchtime. All the humans were out except tall human. He put my harness on, and my string, and opened the door. He immediately stepped back inside. He may have just forgotten something but I was worried that he’d lost his mind, or worse – changed his mind, so I slipped off my harness and took myself for a lovely walk instead. Yes, I admit that was an over-reaction, but I panicked. Ok?

I decided I was tired of the whiff of the park and went in search of some new whiffs. I ran. I realised perhaps that it was a good plan, as tall human was soon running along behind looking thrilled at the new direction our walk was now taking. He was calling my name and doing quite a fine job of keeping up. But those poor humans don’t have nearly enough legs to run properly, and he was soon unable to keep up.

The rain was pouring and a this made everything have a whiff of wet and pungent. Pungent is in my top ten whiffs.

Soon I was seeing things and hearing things I’d never experienced. There were plenty of people around, but they were all travelling around even faster than me, in big boxes on wheels with sofas in them (humans like to sit down). They do well not to bang into each other.

Now, I’ve made an interesting observation. Actually, I’ve made two. The first is that all humans, with very few exceptions, like to run around with me. I ran here. I ran there. I ran everywhere. And wherever I ran, humans would try and run alongside me. Sometimes one. Sometimes large groups. Some were slow, so to give them an extra chance, I’d double back and then slow down a little, but once I could see that they had the hang of it, I’d return to normal speed.

Now for my second observation. Humans arrange their shops in groups according to the first letter. While I scampered from one side of the road to the other, I noted Homebase, Home Bargains, Halfords, Harvester and Hobbycraft. Someone needs to have that awkward conversation with Maplin as they’ve got the wrong address. Funny business.

Well, after playing hide and seek with more humans than I care to whiff, I grew a little bored. Tall human was nowhere to be seen. Which was odd.

I walked for a while to give him a chance to catch up. But he didn’t. The rain wasn’t getting any better, so I carried on walking, as I didn’t want to put my bum down on wet ground. I walked. And walked.

I walked some more. I decided I didn’t like hide and seek. Maybe P would be more fun? (Pets at Home immediately interests me…PoundStretcher…not sure…but I’m happy to try it)

Well the game came to a natural end. I stopped hiding, but I started to wonder if everyone had also stopped the seeking part. Eventually, and by that I must remind you I AM a dog so I can’t even begin to give a time, but later (definitely not earlier) I found a resting place. Because I thought it was appropriate (sticking with the alphabetical theme), and perhaps a clue, I chose Heron Way as my resting place.

It got terribly dark. I grew terribly hungry. I’ve usually had a bowl of whiffy casserole by the time it gets dark. How curious. I started to seriously doubt the future of hide and seek. I think there’s a lot more fun to be had with a stick, just for future reference.

I refer you to my earlier comment about time, and that I’m a dog, but I would suggest, breakfast would normally be forthcoming by now, that it was the next day. This was no longer funny. In fact, on reflection, it had stopped being funny around the time I realised tall human wasn’t keeping up.

I think more hours went by. I’d run out of places beginning with ‘H’ so until I could think of anywhere I choose to stay put. Hungry begins with H.

There was a garden near Heron Way that looked a bit like mine. I sat in it. Hungry and damp and tired. Between long blinks as I wondered whether to go to sleep, I finally heard human and tall human talking. Funny business. I jumped up, and dashed through a gap in the hedge (ooh ‘H’) and there they were. And they had hotdog. Hotdog. This H thing is weird now. Make it stop.image

Well I have to say I have never imagined how wonderful it would be to get to the end of hide and seek. We went home. The small humans shrieked when they saw me. Human cried a bit, and let me get closer to her face than usual. Obviously they can’t stand the game either.

Happy ending begins with H.

A Whiff of Freedom

For those who know me, you’ll be familiar with my need for new and interesting whiffs. There’s nothing quite as satisfying as discovering a good whiff in an unexpected place. This week I’ve had a whiff of a completely different kind. I’ve had a whiff of freedom. And it was gooood.

Human took me over to the park. She’s in a pretty good routine, and my efforts to train her are really starting to pay off. She usually has some fairly decent treats in her pocket, and she’s not at all stingy with them. (Unlike the tall human who never brings ANYTHING to eat on a walk.) She does require me to perform like some circus clown sometimes, by sending me away and then immediately calling me back (like some delinquent). But I usually take pity on what perhaps is low self esteem and separation anxiety, and go running back to her as requested.

Well, either she’s lost the plot or her mind was elsewhere, as I noticed she’d dropped my string and seemed thoroughly unconcerned about it. Funny business. I stayed fairly close by in case she exhibited other strange behaviour. I know she feeds me foul breakfasts, and torments me with the vacuum cleaner, but I’m quite fond of her.

Perhaps she’ll begin to do it more often. Paws crossed.image

Oh I do like to bark beside the seaside

I like the whiff of the seaside.

I’ve been to Southsea and Bornemouth and I like the smell of both. There is a strange surface under foot that moves when you walk on it. It sticks to my nose too – funny business. The small humans dig holes in it. I like to dig holes. I like the small humans. There’s moving water that keeps pretending to chase me and then it moves away again, and then it pretends to chase me, and then it moves away again, and then…well, you get the idea. I quite like the game, but it gets a bit predictable.

imageI have been barking at passing dogs. There are dogs at the seaside that aren’t allowed to come and play with me. Their humans seem to be set on walking past with as little fun and conversation as is possible. So I bark. I think it helps, in case they haven’t seen me. So far all that happens is my human gets quite cross and speaks to me with a grumpy voice, while pulling my string tight.

Will I ever get off this string?

Rosettes, a dog called Jack and a funny whiff

It’s been a busy few dog days. Last week, me and the humans went to the park in town where there was some kind of queuing festival and dog parade. There was more to whiff than I could take in. We stood in a queue at the start of our visit and talked to strangers. Human often talks to strangers. Funny business. Stranger had a nice dog called Jack. Jack was happyimage to be there and was somewhat of an old pro to this dog parade lark. I decided, if it was ok for Jack, then it was ok for me. Eventually, we got to the front of the queue, and some of the humans must have been new to the system of standing in lines, as they were all over the place. At the front table were some humans sitting at tables. Perhaps they were tired from the queuing. Human wrote down some things, handed over some money. I think she wanted a turn in the chair. She didn’t get one. She did get a label with the number 186 and my name written on it.

We left Jack. His human appeared to be trying to hire the chair. But we moved on, so I don’t know if they had more luck than us.

There were various areas fenced off, for the different kinds of dog parade, I suppose. We went to the chip van and waited for two grumpy humans to finish arguing so that they could make our chips. It was like a really bad Punch and Judy show, but there were no puppets, and the voices sounded like their own.  Also, no one clapped at the end. (But sometimes that happens at the end of Punch and Judy too.)

Eventually it was time to parade me around with lots of other dogs. We lined up and waited. A big grey haired human came and touched all of the dogs and said things in a cheery, sing song voice. She had a little bit of a whiff, but anyone touching that many dogs is going to pick up a whiff. I liked it. I liked her. She pointed at lots of dogs who were allowed to stay for the end of the parade, but me and human had to leave, with lots of others. They looked sad, but I was happy. I was fairly tired of all the whiffs, so soon we came home, and I got extra treats for being me. Funny business.

I like dog parades. I like Jack. I don’t like Punch and Judy, either with, or without puppets.

Where’s my whiff?

Just a short entry today, to say that without ANY warning whatsoever, I was put into the big, white water bowl upstairs (heaven only knows what normally drinks from that thing) and my beautiful whiff that I’ve been working on for the last month was rinsed away.

I have no whiff. And frankly, very little dignity left.

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A little off the top

Being a girl, I want to look my best. I’ve been having an egg every week or two to condition my coat. I’ve heard everyone saying how glossy I am. I heard the human talking to her friends about grooming. I think she was talking about some kind of spa. I was deciding which bag to pack, and what accessories to take. I was excited. And then she got theimage manky old clippers out that she uses on the big and small human, and took me into the garden and pinned me to the grass in what can only be described as a hold lacking in any kind of dignity.

How embarrassing. Just when you think it can’t get any worse, it did. She did it all over again the following day. There is still talk of taking me out there again to do my head. What, precisely, she plans to do with my head I honestly couldn’t say, but it sounds like a nasty business to me. Still, strangers are admiring me, which never gets boring.

Human let me off the lead, I think on purpose yesterday. I ran like I can’t remember — running for ages, and further than ever.  I played with Skip and chased him all over the park. Skip looks like he could bulldoze his way through anything, so wouldn’t be concerned about a little thing like a door, or a brick wall. I’m not even sure he knew I was there. But I was. He’s really into his ball. It made him foam at the mouth.

Today I played with Bertie. He’s a one-eyed dog. What is it with one-eyed dogs. Should I be worried?

Hey, before I go, I’ll tell you what whiffed. Dog sick. I was lucky enough to find some. Judging by the hideous cries of my humans, I will decline to tell you anymore about it, but rest assured, that was a highlight of my day.

I’ll probably be bald the next time I write.