If your name's not on
the list, you can't
One of a series of photographs of the boys from a photo shoot to produce a 'WOW' picture for the cover of a 'Thank You' card which was sent to their 'minders' Barry and Wendy who looked after them when we were away in England. It turns out they were treasures so all the training 'Cesar Millan' way is beginning to pay off. Any training of course, is dependent on consistency so what must Barry and Wendy think when the boys, en route home from their walk, dig in their heels and jab their noses in the direction of Da Cicco', the little village bar. One would think, quite rightly, that they are regular visitors there. Their woolly heads are controlled entirely by salivary glands so tempted by ice cream cones and biscuits provided on occasion by Patrizio the owner it would be foolish to pass by without at least, a recce.
Which leads me on to 'What does your Dog say about you?'
This is Polo, our previous dog, a white german shepherd rescue from the Blue Cross in Northiam, East Sussex. He was 4 years old when we bought him. We brought him to Italy with us but sadly he died just before Christmas 2006. Without ever knowing where he came from (although we did know some of his history ~ he had a few behavioural problems) we learned a good deal about the family he had lived with previously. He wouldn't play and was reluctant to touch any toys, especially those that resembled "baby" toys. I bought him a teddy bear from a boot sale and he avoided it for a long time. Maybe he was getting mixed messages from us. Perhaps his previous family had children and he had been taught not to touch their belongings. When he lived with us we allowed him in the dining room when we were eating but he never approached the table until the last knife and fork was laid to rest. He did this every mealtime with military precision, talk about scrupulous table manners! He was nervous at raised voices and swear words ~ he recognised most of them sadly, and hung his head the minute he detected the slightest change in mood for the worse. He would dip his head the moment somebody picked up a tea towel which made us think that perhaps one had been used in the past as an instrument of correction. But he recognised phrases like "I have to go out" when he would retire to his bed and collapse into it with a big sigh and "Do you want to come to the office?" which prompted excited yelping and spinning around in circles at the door. Our office, part of a purpose built garage conversion was only at the bottom of the garden but he loved to go there and he was happy there. So much so that sometimes he didn't want to come back to the house, so we left him there and renamed the office 'The Dog House'. He was also very comfortable travelling in a car which is just as well since the back of the Land Rover was his home for 3 days when he travelled to Italy with us. Thank goodness Dr. Doolittle is just a figment of someones imagination.
We've put gagging orders on our two!!
He found a little playmate in the village, a semi-stray who used to tag along with us on our walks. We called her 'cucciola' (pronounced cooch-ola) the Italian word for puppy. She would follow us for miles so we had to put her in the car at the end of the walk and drive her back to her 'spot'. Coincidence ~ but notice the 'red collar worn cool' trend.