Wednesday, 26 December 2012

Christmas Day 2012!

Hugo and Pip's first Christmas with us - think they enjoyed their day! They both had a full turkey dinner with all the trimmings but, in the same style as Sid before them, they left the sprouts and carrots!

Here a just a few pictures of them and their presents!

Pip with her new Tigger

Uh-oh trouble brewing!

Me thinks this one won't last long!

Yep, I was right!

Worn out after a walk then Christmas lunch

Did we just hear the fridge door opening?!!

Wednesday, 12 December 2012

Disappearing duvet & a flying dog!

Over the last two days SOMEBODY has been gradually been pulling the stuffing out of our duvet! Toby went upstairs this afternoon and found white fluff coming out of our bedroom door and down the stairs. Fortunately, we only bought a new one yesterday so it looks as if it will be going on the bed sooner than we thought!

Toby came and picked me up from work today so Hugo and Pip had only been left on their own for about half and hour when we got in but you would have thought they hadn't seen us for a year. As we opened the door they were barking and kita-talking and standing up at the child gate which leads in to the kitchen. Suddenly, Hugo, who normally struggles to heave himself up on the sofa, leapt over the gate in one swift move - think he rather surprised himself as well as us!

Hugo and Pip love this cold, frosty weather and they go absolutely mental when they are let out in the garden. Pip was standing at the edge of the pond, balancing on a stone, drinking the icy water when Hugo bounded up behind her, grabbed her leg and almost pushed her in! There was then a mad five minutes of charging round the garden leaping at each other, and us, until they were calm enough to take out for a walk. Goodness knows how they will be if it snows.

Monday, 10 December 2012

Winter Pack Walk

The dogs, from left to right - Cassie, the Orange Dog (a.k.a. Marvin), Pip, Hugo, Kiri, Obi, Tia, Suki, Max, Candy, Nico and MistyCat.
The day we had been looking forward to for ages finally arrived yesterday - the day of the Akita Winter Walk at Westport Lake near Stoke on Trent. We had to set off at 8.30am to make sure we got there for 11am but knowing Hugo and Pip get so excited when we go out in the car that we have to stop about 5 minutes into the journey, Toby took them up on the common first so they had already had a good walk when we set off.

We had a good run up there without too much winging or whining and arrived just after 10.30am as planned. Arriving at the same time as us were Teresa, Kirsty and Ross with Princess Tia and 'the orange dog' (a.k.a. Marvin), who is a staffie with aspirations of becoming a bear, shortly followed by Christine and Clive with Kiri and Obi. There was a little bit of growling and sorting out the pecking order but nothing to worry about - the dogs behaved beautifully too!
Pip cleaning her feet on Teresa's coat! 

Then Kim and Mike drove in with Candy and Nico - for those that don't know, these are the lovely people who fostered Pip before we adopted her and we had been wondering if she would still remember them. Boy, did she remember! She was all over Kim in total ecstasy, and Mike too - it was so lovely to see. Candy and Nico had a good sniff round her but Hugo wasn't so keen on this - Pip is HIS sister now!!

More Akita's arrived - Tally with her new mum, Sally, and Cassie with her dad, Robbie. It was bitterly cold so we decided to start off on the walk round a small lake to warm everyone up. We spaced ourselves out and apart from a few minor pawings and warnings they were all beautifully behaved. We were pleased when Marie caught us up with Misty Cat and we set off on the first lap round the big lake. Hugo had to keep drinking from the lake every few yards - all that water and all those ducks, Canadian geese and swans must have been like Paradise to him. Just surprised nobody ended up in the water as most of the dogs had a paddle at some stage. 

As we were completing the first lap of the lake we were joined by Annie and Neil with the beautiful Suki and 'Mad' Max who was in foster with Marie and Misty Cat. After a quick break for cakes (thanks Christine, they were lovely!) we did a second turn around the lake and all enjoyed our time together.
Marvin, they're wearing your colour!

As everyone set off for home, Toby and I took Hugo and Pip back to Kim and Mikes for a cup of tea - cheeky Miss Pip knew exactly where she was and made herself right at home, even demanding a treat by barking at the cupboard where she knew they were kept. Even Hugo was well settled and lay down without a fuss.

There were hold ups on the motorway on the way back so it took well over 2 hours to get home but Hugo and Pip did not mind - they were fast asleep in the back of the car and hardly stirred all the way. Once home they gobbled up as much of their tea as they could then flaked out again for the rest of the night. Think they enjoyed themselves!

Monday, 3 December 2012

Pip is not amused!

On Friday we noticed Pip had a bit of a sore patch just under her ear and by last night it had turned into quite a nasty abscess. It was first brought to our attention by Hugo when we spotted him licking her ear and we thought 'ah, how sweet, he loves her' - should know him better by now shouldn't we?! Anyway, the inevitable trip to the V.E.T. took place this evening and Toby and I took both Hugo and Pip along - more worming tablets are just about due and we wanted to get them both weighed as they have both grown.

Come and play Pip!
As we went into the surgery the first thing Hugo did was to jump up and put his feet on the reception desk - unfortunately  the resident cat was sitting on the other side and Hugo was very interested in all the spitting and hissing and wide eyes going on there! We were quite early so had to wait for a while and we were really pleased how they both behaved, especially as smaller dogs were barking at them. Pip was a bit jumpy though so she probably knew something nasty was going to happen. 

A lady with one of the small dogs came out of one of the surgery doors looking rather anxious and they took her dog downstairs "It's always a bad sign when they take them down there" she said. The dog was soon returned though - he'd had a dew claw removed and they promised her he'd only made a small yelp when it was removed (if you believe that you'll believe anything).

We have cut this collar down now - it was
a bit big!
Then it was our turn so we all crammed into the little surgery. The nice nurse had a look at Pip's ear and decided she had to shave some of the hair off so she could see it better - Pip had other ideas!! She wriggled and squirmed and, even after a muzzle had been put on her (she wasn't biting or snapping but the nurse thought it might be safer) we couldn't hold her still enough to get more than a snippet of hair from her. The nurse then called the vet in and he had a look at her and said what a lovely puppy she was - he also commented on Hugo's lovely temperament so we liked him! Then those dreaded words 'We'll just pop her downstairs and clean it up for her!"

We trooped back into the waiting room and the nurse took her through the door while we went to the counter to pay. There was a lot of scrabbling sounds coming from behind the door and we could see Pip, backed right up as far as her collar would allow, four feet firmly planted with the nurse trying to get her to move - she was NOT going down those stairs. Toby had to take her in the end and then we sat and waited for her return. Don't know how they did it (and don't particularly want to) but she came back with a shaved ear and had been given  antibiotics and steroid injections. She has to take antibiotics for a week and we have to go back next Monday for a check up. We mustn't let Hugo lick it because THAT is what caused the infection from probably just a small scratch - wouldn't be at all surprised if he'd made that small scratch (or bite) in the first place.

When we got home Pip kept trying to scratch her ear so we resorted to putting the collar on her - this is the one Hugo had after his op. but it was so big on her we have had to cut it down. Hugo kept lying on the floor in front of her and pawing up at her face in the collar to try and make her play - she was not a happy bunny. She is very sleepy now so think the injections are having an affect.

Forgot to say - Pip is 25.9kg (just over four stone) and Hugo is 41.1kg (six and a half stone) so both filling out nicely.

Sunday, 2 December 2012

Having a lie in

On a week day our alarm goes off at 6.30am and Martin is out walking Hugo and Pip by 7am. On a weekend we try and have a bit of a lie in (I think 7.45am is the latest I have slept for years). Unfortunately, Hugo and Pip have no concept of what a lie in is and come and huff and puff in our faces and jump on and off the bed till one of us gives in and gets up to let them up the garden. This fobs them off for another half an hour allowing us to take a cup of tea back to bed and read. They show their disapproval by both jumping up on the bed and throwing themselves down between us  with much sighing and THAT look (you Akita owners out there will know what I mean by that). Needless to say there isn't much room for all of us so the lie ins are pretty short lived!

Saturday, 1 December 2012

Healthy eating!

Worn out!
It's been much colder this week and Hugo and Pip love it - the slightest bit of frost and they're out there, hoovering up the decking with their tongues and romping in the grass. Pip's not quite so hardy as Hugo though and likes to come in for a nice warm by the fire.

Toby and I took them for a lovely long walk this morning through Standish Woods -  the car park was quite full when we got there so we went a different path from normal and found some really quiet and secluded spots which was fantastic and we all thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. We did meet someone riding a horse that Hugo was quite keen to play with  - Pip was more interested in trying to eat what it had deposited - but apart from them there were only a couple of other dog walkers around. As usual Hugo and Pip had a wonderful time dragging us up and down banks and round trees - they are like small children with all the leaves down and the frost made them nice and crisp.
It's normally Pip on the sofa but tonight it was Hugo's turn.

The long walk did the trick and Hugo and Pip have been asleep for most of the day, apart from when I was trying to do some baking this afternoon that is. They will insist on lying where you have to keep stepping over them so you feel like you've taken part in an obstacle race by the time you've finished. I don't know how but they seemed to guess one of the things I was making was some dog biscuits for them - I have made them before but this time I put some liver pate into the mixture so they could probably smell it. By the time the biscuits came out the oven they were both drooling and I had to blow on a couple to get them cool enough for them to have straight away. I think I can safely say they were a huge success as they have eaten almost half of them already (there were about 50 to start with). I also made a fruit cake and discovered Hugo and Pip are quite partial to the dried mixed fruit  which rather surprised me - the only raisin Sid would eat was if it was covered in chocolate! Just hope it doesn't have a detrimental effect on their stomachs!

Saturday, 24 November 2012

Creature comforts

Had an hours lie in this morning till 7.30am until Hugo decides his routine has been disturbed and comes and lies in the middle of us on the bed. We also hear a rustling sound and guess Pip is up to mischief - the next thing we know is the toilet roll is on the bed as well!

We were all out for an hour or so today so we left Hugo and Pip in the kitchen behind the child gate with lots of toys, food, blankets etc. and they could go in the garden if they wanted. It was chucking it down with rain again while we were out but when we got back there was no sign of them inside anywhere which is very unusual as they are normally barking (Pip) and whining (Hugo) for attention and treats when we come in. Looked through the kitchen window and there they were, having a fine old time, chasing and boxing and rolling with each other round the garden - or rather, should I say, the mud patch! You can imagine the state of them and we had to leave them in the kitchen for a while so they would dry off before letting them in the living room.

I know it was a bit chilly today but Miss Pip has been very attached to the fire this afternoon - still amazes me that she gets so close and neither Hugo or Sid would go near it.

Thursday, 22 November 2012

Nice and Clean!

Yesterday morning Hugo was fast asleep on the landing outside our bedroom door when Martin got up to go and have a wash in the bathroom. When I got up Hugo did too and I noticed something that he had been lying on - it was a bar of Imperial Leather soap, only a little bit chewed and with just a few dog hairs. He must have felt a little bit peckish and taken it from the dish in the bathroom during the night - makes me feel queasy to think about it!

Nobody loves me!
Later in the day Toby took Hugo and Pip up on the common after the worst of the rain was over but they came back absolutely covered in mud. There was no option but to bath them! We have never bathed Hugo before as he really is too heavy to manhandle, especially as he is none too keen on the idea but Toby and I between us managed to heave him into the water. He was not impressed and even less so when I used the shower attachment to rinse him off. He was a lot easier getting out the bath than getting in and proceeded to shake himself everywhere. As he is frightened of towels the best I could do was to tie one round him, superman-style, to soak up the worst of the water - he was not happy and just stood there until we took pity on him and removed it.  Miss Pip, on the other hand was not bothered in the slightest and lifted her legs up to be washed underneath and was quite happy to be dried off. The water in the bath was a thick brown gloop and I had to unblock the plug hole because of their hair so think a good wash was long overdue.  Both of them lay in front of the fire most of the evening and seemed to be exhausted by the experience - they didn't even bother going out for a walk later on. This morning both of them are beautifully soft and a LOT whiter than they have been for a while. Doubt it will last long in this weather though.
Hugo willing the cheese to fall off!

It was dark early tonight and very windy so rather than go anywhere too exposed we took them down the canal - Hugo was pulling like a train and I had to keep stopping and making him sit just to get some control back - think the Halti will be making an appearance again soon. Pip was jumping around so suspect the wind was ruffling both of them and leaves were blowing everywhere.. Needless to say both of them had to drink the canal water so ended up with mud on their legs again. Never mind, at least we managed to take them out for a while.

Sunday, 18 November 2012

Walking in the woods.

Looking back to Penn Woods from
halfway up the field
We took Hugo and Pip for a really good walk through Penn Woods, just off Selsley Common yesterday. We had to walk down a steep path to get to the kissing gate which lead in to the woods and this was hilarious to start with - the path was covered with slippery beech leaves which are bad enough when you are on your own, but when you have two excited Akitas pulling you hard you can imagine the consequences! We slipped and slithered down the hill, and couldn't stop laughing - it was by sheer luck we didn't end up on the ground. Why is it that although there is a perfectly good kissing gate the dogs prefer to go underneath or through the railings of the fence instead? We ended up in a right pickle with me in the middle of the gate, Toby on one side of the fence and the dogs on the other and the leads tying us all up together - just glad no one was watching.

Once in the woods the path went down and down, through mud and leaves, Hugo and Pip pulling Toby and me down the hill with them - we could have done with a sledge really but they do like to go through the trees! Rather than going back the same way we had come we skirted round the bottom of the hill and cut across a field to get back to the common and where the car was parked. Although it was shorter it was much steeper but Hugo and Pip were full of energy and really enjoying themselves. At the bottom of the path was an old bath tub used to water the horses who lived in those fields so Hugo decided to have a drink - he really made himself jump though when his name tag clanged the side of the metal bath! Silly boy, he's a bit of a wuss really!

On the edge of Penn Wood
This morning was bright and frosty. Pip had sneaked up on our bed about 5 o'clock and was fast asleep but Hugo decided that 7am was LATE and he huffed in my face till I went and let him out in the garden. The pair of them went absolutely potty, skidding across the frost on the decking and licking everything that had crystals of ice on it. 

Toby and I took them back on  Selsley Common this afternoon but only on the flat bit on the top - our legs couldn't cope with the hills in the woods two days running. It was a beautiful afternoon with bright sunshine and quite warm but, unfortunately, this also meant lots of other people and their dogs were out walking too so Hugo was being a bit of a nightmare pulling in all directions to try and get to them. After about 5 minutes of this I had had enough so dragged him round to me, made him sit and held his face so he was looking at me and told him very firmly that he WAS going to walk nicely - amazed it seemed to work and he was fine after that so very pleased with him.

Thursday, 15 November 2012

Mud, Mud, Glorious Mud!

Mud, mud, glorious mud!
Pip enjoying the mud
Toby decided to take Hugo and Pip down to the meadows yesterday morning - BIG mistake! The cows have churned the field up so much the mud is literally about a foot deep. The dogs absolutely loved it though, especially in the really soggy bits going into the river - all three of them were caked in mud and Toby had so much stuck in and on his boots he ended up taking them off and carrying them home. So, you can imagine the state of Hugo and Pip's legs - all of which should be white. To make matters worse, Hugo wouldn't let Toby get any of it off him when he came home. For those who don't know this area, the heavy clay here can be used to make a natural watertight lining to ponds and canals - it thick, very sticky and a bluish brown in colour. As it gradually dried it turned into a fine powder so we are now constantly trying to brush bits out of them - the seat of the black leather settee where pip lies is now a dull matt brown and I don't think Hugo's legs will ever be white again!

Later in the day Toby noticed they were playing with what he thought was a bit of fur from a deceased teddy bear until he spotted a tail and nose - it was a small mouse (very dead and squashed)! Have no idea if they caught it themselves or if next doors cat had left them a present but what did worry me was that it was black in colour - hope it wasn't someone's beloved pet!!!

Where did all this come from?!!
The little monkeys killed another kitchen roll today - this time there was only a little bit in the kitchen but the garden was awash with it! I am seriously going to have to find somewhere else to keep it - hiding the cook books in a cupboard certainly stopped the previous destructive streak so think I'm going to have to go minimalist (until you actually look in the cupboards that  is!).

We took them up on Selsley Common this evening - Hugo and Pip behaved quite well - but only because it was getting dark, big scaredy cats!! Normally Hugo is on the alert for any dog on the horizon but today he could see the cars going along the road on the edge of the common as they had their lights on so he kept 'pointing' at them instead and got quite excited  - perhaps he needs his eyes testing.

Tuesday, 13 November 2012

We love each other really!

Toby wasn't well today so rather than me trying to manage both Hugo and Pip on a long walk on my own I thought I would take them one at a time on a shorter one. Normally they are quite jealous of each other and as soon as you make a fuss of one the other pushes in so I thought they would enjoy the individual attention for a change.

I took Hugo first and although he walked much better than usual without pulling too much (no competition from Pip to be first all the time) he kept looking back over his shoulder, winging and whining for the whole walk. When I got back I switched them over and took Pip. She was quite skittish when she was walking although she hardly pulled at all BUT ....... she winged and whined, looking back over her shoulder for the whole walk!!

When we got back I asked Toby how they had been when they were left behind. Pip had stood behind the front door crying and Hugo had kept running up and down the stairs till we were back. 

Talk about separation anxiety!Think they are fonder of each other than they would care to admit.

Sunday, 11 November 2012

Walking the plank!

Walking the plank!
We have been taking Hugo and Pip for walks up on Selsley Common or through Randwick Woods the last couple of weeks so when Toby and I took them along the canal the other evening they were really excited. They were darting all over the place, sniffing and having a grand old time. As the garden is still cordoned off poor Hugo has been deprived of his beloved pond water so he was climbing down the banks of the canal every few yards to have a good old drink. He must have rather overdone it though because he suddenly did the largest burp you have ever heard!

Looks like Pip is chasing Hugo in her sleep
When we got to the lock gates I was holding on to Hugo and Toby had Pip but we had to hurriedly switch leads as Hugo took off across the wooden plank walk way on to the other side of the canal and Toby had to go with him! He had spotted 3 ducks sitting in the grass and was very disappointed when they immediately jumped in the water, quaking loudly (actually it sounded like they were laughing at him!) Neither Toby or I like water and don't 'do' heights (the lock is about 20ft deep) so it wasn't very nice for Toby having to walk the plank. Hugo didn't bat an eyelid though and wanted to keep going back and forth - just had visions of him coming to the end of his lead and getting yanked back into the water - he would have been on his own if he had!!
Making friends with 'the monster'

Yesterday Toby and I went to do a home check for the Akita Rescue and Welfare and took Hugo and Pip with us. They were very well behaved for them - they only churned up the lawn, drank the dregs of coffee out of a cup on the table and went upstairs to check the bedrooms!

Had a good walk up on Selsley Common this afternoon - lovely sunshine and quite warm too. Hugo and Pip were very interested in a hang glider trying to take off and Hugo wanted to chase it. Must be getting braver because he also made friends with 'the monster' and wee'd up it!

Tuesday, 6 November 2012

Helping clean

This morning Hugo bought the kitchen roll in to the living room and presented it to Martin - fortunately there was only a couple of sheets left on it and he was allowed to chew it up. Without any more thought I took a new roll out and put it back on the work surface in the kitchen,

Toby had to go out for a couple of hours so left Hugo and Pip in the kitchen with their blankets, toys, food, water, back door open and the radio on for company (it's a bit like a military operation when we are getting ready to go out and the dogs are staying at home!).

When Toby came back, yes, you've guessed it - kitchen roll EVERYWHERE! Through the kitchen, into the hall, in the outhouse and up the garden - it was if it had been snowing!

Tonight as I was tidying up Hugo thought it would be fun to have a game of Tug with me and the duster - very helpful!

Please note - we are in the middle of putting
a new kitchen in which is why the one door is
 missing and the lino is down to what was there
when  we moved in  27 years ago!
It wasn't us!!

Saturday, 3 November 2012

Halloween, Fireworks and Bed Fellows!

I'm so happy I could laugh!
You've got to be quicker than that Toby!
It was Halloween on Thursday night and much as I disagree with the whole thing I always have a big bowl of sweets and chocolate ready for the neighbours kids when they come knocking at the door.

Hugo and Pip were brilliant - to begin with every time the door was knocked Pip would bark and they would both come with me to the door to see who was there - the kids love them and almost forget why they are coming round as they try to pat and stroke the dogs. Of course, Hugo and Pip were in their element and the strange masks and wigs didn't bother them in the slightest - they were, however, slightly miffed that chocolate was being handed out with no sign of any coming in their direction. After half a dozen or so callers Pip had had enough and woofed from the settee without moving so Hugo got all the fuss.

This way!
Both Hugo and Pip sleep upstairs at night with Pip on her blanket at the top of the stairs and Hugo on his on the floor at the foot of the bed - a bit of an obstacle course if you have to get up in the night but they seem quite content. Miss Pip, however, has discovered our bed is more comfortable then her blanket and we quite often find her on the bed when we wake up in the morning - usually with pins and needles or cramp because she is laying across our legs. Then she tried pushing her luck by getting up as we were going to bed and we had a couple of nights very poor sleep as she would lie across the bed rather than down it so we started to push her off. Hugo does get up on the bed but usually for never more than 5-10 minutes before jumping back off but he has now taken matters into his own hands. As we go up to bed HE gets on the middle of the bed and lies down (surprisingly although he is twice the size of Pip he takes up less room then she does!). When Pip comes in there isn't room for her so she goes and lies on her blanket, we put the lights out, Hugo waits for about 5 minutes and then gets off and we have a free bed - what a clever boy!

I can smell something, where is it?
There are still remnants of the big bones they had last week lying around the house and some of these pieces have found their way upstairs. Pip is a bit of a madame and will steal Hugo's from out of his mouth but he is getting crafty as well. The other morning Pip was downstairs and Hugo jumped up on the bed between us for a cuddle (he's a big softie first thing in the morning) when he heard Pip coming upstairs, quickly jumped off the bed, found his bone, jumped back on the bed and lay on top of the bone so she didn't know he had it.

Fireworks, what fireworks?
Toby and I took Hugo and Pip up to Randwick woods this afternoon and we walked for well over an hour with them - they had a fantastic time and had us wrapped round the trees several times. It was beautiful up there today with the sun streaming through the branches on to the fallen beech leaves below. They were quite skittish and darting hither and thither. Several times Hugo picked up the trail of something and I was dragged after him through the undergrowth - didn't actually find anything but he had a great time. We saw a couple of people with four Huskies which Hugo and Pip would have quite liked to have joined but we wouldn't let them - think they had their hands full as it was.

Fireworks are going off all around tonight and I am pleased to report Hugo and Pip are not bothered in the slightest, even when our neighbour across the road let off several really loud ones - they just twitch an ear or stretch but don't seem to even notice most of them. Hugo asked to go up the garden when I was cooking tea and a rocket went up from just a few doors down - he just looked up at the pretty colours with his head on one side until it was finished and then carried on as normal. 

Monday, 29 October 2012

Big, brave, bone eating bears!

Now some of you might not believe this but not only do we not have double glazing, we don't have central heating in our house either! For the first time since May we actually put the gas fire on in the living room the other day and we realised it had not been on since we had had either Hugo or Pip so were interested to see what the reaction would be - and also whether we need to invest in a fire guard again! Hugo was so much like our old Sid it was unbelievable - he instantly removed himself as far from the fire as he could and lay down with a big sigh and started huffing and puffing. Miss Pip, on the other hand, lay out full length in front of it and soaked it up - not for the first time I suspect she is not all Akita!!

As mentioned before, we have put a barrier up in the garden to try and salvage some of the lawn that has now become a mud bath. Unfortunately, Pip can squeeze through, or can jump over, a couple of the obstacles and takes delight in running up and down on the inside of the barrier while Hugo runs up and down the other side - he is far too big to get through the gaps and has never shown any inclination to jump anything. To add insult to injury she takes great delight in going and drinking from the pond which is Hugo's preferred source of water.

On Friday, Daniel went and bought a couple of 'Jurassic' bones from the pet shop and they have kept them amused for the last three days - there has been the odd squabble and it's not very good when you tread on a bit of shattered bone when you get up in the night but they have thoroughly enjoyed them. Until, that is, Miss Pip carried several pieces over the barrier so Hugo couldn't get them - he was not amused and got his own back by burying a large chunk in his blanket! The living room carpet is now reminiscent of a scene from Time Team when they are digging in a church yard.

My parents came to visit on Friday and were introduced to Pip for the first time - Dad came prepared with some treats in his pocket but made the mistake of 'barking' back at her when she met him (she is always very vocal when she is excited). Every time he spoke or looked at her she woofed at him so hope she won't do this every time they meet.

Where's it all gone?
Not much of a view today!
Who goes there - friend or foe?!

Went up on Selsley Common the other day when it was shrouded in fog - really quite eerie up there, especially when a beagle came charging up over the hill barking at us. Hugo and Pip obviously could sense the change and were charging around, jumping over each other and generally being very skittish - they loved it when they startled a flock of birds and tried to dash after them, as far as their leads allowed.

It's that time of year again and the fireworks have started - there is always a large display on the first Monday of half term week about a mile from where we live and the bangs and crackles can be heard quite clearly so we were prepared for two frightened dogs. Sid was always terrified of them and would sit as close to you as he could, panting and dribbling until it was over - it was almost a blessing when he got hard of hearing in later life and they stopped worrying him. Hugo and Pip are made of sterner stuff - firstly, they were having their last trip in to the garden before going to bed the other night when a firework went off overhead. As they were busy chasing each other and creating their own thunder by running across the decking I just assumed they hadn't noticed as it wasn't the loudest firework. When the local display started they were both fast asleep in the living room and apart from opening one eye and stretching slightly at one particularly loud 'boom' they weren't bothered at all. Long may it last.

We got soaked tonight going for our walk up on the common - Hugo even let Toby dry him with a towel which is major progress. The wet and cold must have worn them out as they are both fast asleep and showing no interest in going out for a quick walk round the block before bed.

Saturday, 20 October 2012

Picture that!

We have had some beautiful walks in the last few days so here are a selection of pictures to celebrate the glorious Gloucestershire countryside.

Hugo taking a breather

Pip posing

Pulling Toby down the hill!

Dogs approaching!

Cows - I see cows!

Ready or not here I come!

Umm, tasty!

The hills are alive with the sound of.........

Hugo had just conquered 'the monster' - he wee'd up the post!

More dogs approaching!