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We're back!

June 23rd 2011 5:38 am
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Poppy & I have been away a long time, but now we hope to be back on sometimes, as things are beginning to settle down here. We've had a lot of changes, and Daddy now lives in a care home not far from here. At Christmas Mummy was very sick, and the doctor said she'd nearly gone to the Rainbow Bridge to join Emily, and that she couldn't care for Daddy for much longer. It took a lot of time for a nice care home to be found, where Daddy was happy and Mummy & Alex were sure he would be well looked after, but he is there now and likes it so much that he doesn't always want to come home and visit us! Mummy still gets very tired, but the doctor says it will take at least a year before she is back to her old bouncy self (not OLD in years bol!)
Mummy has had to re-organise a lot of the house, and the pond has been filled in - no more fishing with paws for me, worse luck - and is now a raised flower bed. It is meant to be a raised flower bed covered with decorative bark, but Poppy keeps jumping up on it and throwing large pieces down for me to eat, and of course she eats it too, so Mummy says it will be a bald flower bed before long! She gets very cross with both of us, but it's delicious.
Poppy was very ill for a few days, because she'd eaten something - not the bark - that she shouldn't have done and it caused a big blockage. She had to go away and stay at the vet's, where they took lots of x-rays & gave her special treatments to try and help her. As she won't ever do her 'business' anywhere but at home, she wasn't very co-operative, but she notched up what Mummy called a 'socking great bill' and Mummy did point out, rather unkindly, that Poppy herself didn't cost that much, bol!
I can't see much at all any more and I'm going rather deaf, although no one knows why, but I'm full of bouncy happiness and coping fine. I get a bit anxious when I have a drink, as Poppy likes to jump on me when I can't turn my head, so now Mummy has to stand guard and keep Poppy away. She says training lions would be easier than controlling Poppy!
So, we have really missed all our Dogster friends, but there wasn't much we could do as we can't type and Mummy doesn't use the computer much yet as it gives her a headache - or so she claims!
We send lots and lots of wags, licks and kisses to all our Dogster friends, and are VERY happy to be back online, even though it might not be very often just yet.
Hope you are all keeping well, and having a nice summer.
Be back soon!


In which I visit an eye specialist with my anterior uveitis

April 20th 2010 5:39 am
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Today Mummy took me to see an eye specialist, because I’ve been having a lot of trouble with my eyes over the past few months. We had to go by taxi, and it was quite a long journey. I twittered for a while, and then lay down and waited for the walk that never came!

My eyes keep becoming very inflamed, so that I look like a Bloodhound, which gives me terrible pain. Our Nice Vet here needed a second opinion so that he knew he was giving me the right treatment. The specialist was very nice too, and said he had never seen a dog wag its tail as much as I do mine. That was actually because I hadn’t been allowed any breakfast, and I was hoping he was going to give me some!

He put lots of different drops in my eyes, shone lights into them, took x-rays (Mummy had to hold me still but I was very good) and in between various tests Mummy did take me out for a short walk because we had to wait thirty minutes before one kind of drops took effect. I liked the walk, but twittered a lot in the waiting room, until two dogs got into a fight and that silenced me!

I was there for an hour in all, and at the end the specialist told Mummy that I have clearly had cataracts since birth, and the person who bred from me shouldn’t have done that as they are hereditary. She probably didn’t have my eyes checked. The cataracts are huge now, in both eyes, and he said I am ‘severely visually impaired’. That made Mummy laugh. She said it sounded very politically correct, because what he was really saying was that I’m as blind as a bat, bol! I can see a little bit, but not much, and probably scarcely at all out of my left eye.

I have been having steroid drops, but he has changed them to anti-inflammatory drops, to see if they can control the condition, and then Mummy can use the steroid drops for flare-ups. If they don’t work, then it’s back to steroid drops every day. I will need drops of some kind or other for the rest of my life. She has to monitor my problem every single day, as eventually I will have to have my left eye removed, because of the pain caused by the anterior uveitis, as my condition is called, which, in my case, is lens induced as proteins leak out from the lens into the eye fluid due to the cataracts. As both my eyes are affected, one day I may well have to have the right eye removed too, but at the moment Mummy is thinking positively and just trying to keep my left eye going for as long as she can. The specialist wanted me to have the cataracts removed, but I’m not insured and the cost is enormous, thousands and thousands of pounds (and dollars too of course) and Mummy sadly had to say she couldn’t afford it. I don’t mind. Even when I lose my left eye I won’t notice much difference from what I can see at the moment.

When we came home, Mummy and I were both exhausted. Mummy had been awake since 6 worrying about me – we thought I would be losing my eye within the next few weeks but now it seems that I might keep it at least for the summer – and she is very pleased it’s all over. It’s not nice, and if anyone else has a pup with this problem she’d love to hear from them, but it could be much worse. Even without my eyes, I would be able to find my way around with my sense of smell and my hearing, or so the specialist said. I would just need some re-training about a few things.

Mummy wonders how it is that I can still wander around on the pond wall and spot a woodmouse in the border from the other side of the garden if I can’t see properly, but the specialist said it was different for dogs. It certainly is, Mummy can’t see a woodmouse from 100 paces. She doesn’t use her other senses very well, but I’m too kind to tell her!

That was my day out then, and now I’m going to have a long doze on Mummy’s lap. Poppy missed me and we’re very happy to be back together again. On Friday I have to see our vet, and so does Poppy (for boosters) and he will discuss it all with Mummy then. After that, we will take each day as it comes. As long as I can enjoy my food and be with my family, I’m not worried. I just wish Poppy didn’t always beat me to any scrap of food that gets dropped on the floor!


In which Mummy thinks I'm psychic

November 14th 2009 3:18 am
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This morning, Daddy came home from a week’s respite. When he leaves for respite, I always watch him go by standing on the padded stool by the window, and I twitter a little. After that, I don’t look for him or wait for him, because I know that when he goes off with a case he will be gone for a week.

Anyway, after Mummy had fed us this morning and eaten her breakfast, she noticed that I was standing on the stool waiting for Daddy. I also twittered a lot, and ran up and down the stairs to his bedroom. Mummy was absolutely amazed. She said ‘you must be psychic, Amber. How do you know Daddy is coming home today?’ I just looked at her, in my most mysterious manner and said nothing.

Time passed, I kept jumping on the stool, and eventually – as I’d known – Daddy arrived back. A man carried the case in for him, and I ran around fetching Daddy toys, although he didn’t play with any of them. He was pleased to see us, and Mummy told him that I’d known from the moment we had breakfast that he was coming home. He was as surprised as Mummy, and said I must have ESP, whatever that is.

Of course, Poppy rather spoilt the homecoming, because she jumped up at Daddy and her claw caught his skin, which is very thin due to his drugs. He bled and bled, and Mummy had to put antiseptic on it, and then dress it with a special dressing and micropore tape, so that the dressing didn’t tear it more. She said ‘Poppy, you’re a klutz,’ which didn’t sound nearly as interesting as having ESP.

Everyone has settled down now, although Daddy – who notices things like this whereas Mummy fortunately doesn’t – spotted that Poppy and I had torn out some new fencing between us and our neighbours, because we trapped a hedgehog the other night. Mummy said ‘I can’t be bothered worrying about it,’ which was reassuring, as it takes Poppy and me quite a lot of time and effort to do it.

The funniest thing is that Mummy is still sure I’m psychic. Of course I’m not psychic, and I wish I could explain to her that the only reason I know when Daddy is coming home is because that’s the only day of the respite break that she tears around the house like someone demented, trying to tidy up all the mess that’s accumulated during his time away! I’m not psychic, I’m a fraudulent medium, who is good at reading human signs and signals. I should charge for my skills, bol!


Post Op Happiness

October 3rd 2009 6:21 am
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Here I am, back to my usual bouncy self after my operation. I had to have an urgent spaying, and while I was ‘under’ I had all the plaque on my teeth removed as well. I don’t remember a lot about it to be honest. I lost a lot of blood and wasn’t too well for several days. Poppy says that I behaved as though I’d had a heavy night on the town, downing tequilas non-stop. Apparently, and I have to trust her on this, I wandered around our house staggering from side to side, and kept keeling over onto my side to sleep. I didn’t even recognise Mummy for three days, but then on the fourth morning when she got us out of bed, I had a long drink and ate a tiny amount of soft food and from then on things were all right. We were, as Mummy puts it, ‘out of the woods’. I don’t remember any woods either. What a lot I missed!

Post op I am feeling extremely well and happy. I’m still not meant to be jumping on things but Mummy, who hates to be left out, has decided to be very poorly herself, so she can’t stop me! I’ve been up on the wall round the pond, kept getting in the wildlife border until a kind friend put up extra fencing for Mummy, and I even balanced on top of the ivy that grows over a thin plastic fence, like a tightrope walker, and was about to jump into next door’s back garden when I was spotted!

I had to wear a collar for a week, rather like an inflatable armband that children use for learning to swim, except of course that they have two or they would go round and round in circles in the water. Hey, maybe that’s why I kept walking round in a strange way, I should have worn two! In fact, one was more than enough. Mummy took a photo of me wearing it, when I wasn’t even conscious which was mean, and put it on my page. If I could work the camera, I’d be taking photos of her now, and then she’d know that it’s not nice, not funny and not kind, as she is VERY fond of saying.

I’m sure people who live around here think I’ve had a change of name too, and that I’m now called ‘Carrot’. Because Mummy can’t come outside into the garden yet, and because I’m not being quite as good as I might be (but I’m having fun!) she has to bribe me to come in. The vet has said I must NOT put on any weight now I’m spayed, so my food has been reduced, and Mummy uses raw carrot as my reward for coming quickly when she calls me. She puts her head outside the back door and shouts ‘Carrot!’ and in I dash. So, it does make it sound as though that’s my name now. Poppy says that I’m a ‘carrot top’ anyway, as I’m ‘orange’. She is so rude. I’m a ruby, not an orange!

Well, my pancreatitis is under control, I’ve been spayed and I am now more like an 18 month old than a girl who will be four later this year. It’s lovely to feel really well again, and Mummy says the vet is happy as he is now driving a Rolls Royce! The only drawback is that at times I make Poppy look well behaved, which isn’t the idea at all.

Finally, a huge Thank You to everyone who kept me in their prayers, lit candles and sent good wishes, licks and wags to me during all that time. Mummy says I was surrounded by love and we know that made a big difference.

Now, time to go outside again, and see if Poppy and I can find a field mouse to chase. They are nesting under our shed, along with a family of hedgehogs. It’s all wonderful fun. Off I go, bounce, bounce, bounce…..


In which I Nearly Lose My Crown

September 10th 2009 1:17 pm
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There are two things that I now realise I must not do again if I am to retain my title of ‘best behaved dog’ in this house. Of course, the title is fairly worthless as the only other dog here is Poppy and her behaviour defies belief at times, but it’s still a nice title to have.

The first thing I must not repeat happened about three weeks ago now. Mummy was upstairs in the bathroom, and Poppy and I were play fighting in the front room. Daddy was sitting with us, in his chair, but as he’s not well he wasn’t taking too much notice, he just knew we were playing. Mummy suddenly heard this strange noise, a sort of wheezing gasp, but a loud one, and she shouted down to Daddy ‘are the girls all right?’ Daddy said ‘they’re fine, they’re just playing.’

Mummy was pleased to hear this, but the noise got louder and more wheezy and she decided she’d better come downstairs and have a look at us. I was standing right in front of Daddy, and my flanks were heaving in and out as I made this extraordinary noise. Poppy was prancing around me, looking very worried and occasionally licking my nose. Mummy shouted ‘Amber isn’t playing; she’s choking! What’s she eaten?’ Of course Daddy didn’t know, it was what Mummy calls a rhetorical question, and she quickly opened my mouth and saw that I’d swallowed my tongue. She tried to hook her fingers round it and get it out of my throat, but it had stuck to the roof of my mouth and didn’t want to move. She was going frantic, and put her finger in from the other side of my tongue – it wasn’t too pleasant I can tell you, for me I mean, I’m sure Mummy was having a Ball – and suddenly there was a strange noise and lo and behold my tongue was back in my mouth again.

Phew, I was relieved. I’d been quite worried for a few minutes I can tell you. Mummy must have been worried too, as she called me a silly dog and said I must NEVER do that again. Then she gave me a big, big cuddle and said ‘I thought I’d lost you for a minute.’ Lost me? I wasn’t in any state to go anywhere else! So, as she was upset and frazzled, I decided I’d better try not to do that again, although to be honest I’ve no idea how it happened, but it was probably Poppy’s fault, most things are around here.

The second thing I must not do again is get in the wildlife border in early September, when it’s full of bushy plants and flowers, especially when I ‘probably’ (no one saw me do it) jumped in from the pond wall. That’s tricky, but jumping up and out, over the high fence and onto the pond wall to get out is absolutely impossible. So, there I was, trampling around in the undergrowth, searching for the bird that had tempted me in the first place, and out of the house comes a very cross Mummy.

I looked at her and thought ‘what are you going to do to save me this time?’ She’s not exactly agile these days, but she still has a few brain cells, so she had brought the stool that Daddy rests his feet on and she put that down in the border. Then she told me to get on it, but I couldn’t find a way through all those plants she’s wasted her money on over the years, and in the end I had to trample through the newly flowering ice plant (I only broke one big piece en route) pick my way over the oak log in the border and balance precariously on the stool. I only wanted to put my front paws on it, but Mummy made me put all four paws on, so that she could reach me without ‘putting her back out’. I don’t know where she thought she was going to put it, but that’s what she said. Anyone would think I was a circus dog, perched up there like that.

As I wobbled around on this ludicrously small footstool, Mummy grabbed me firmly round the middle of my body using both hands and heaved me out. Then she said ‘what on earth were you thinking of? You KNOW you’re not allowed in there.’ Yes, I do know, but I couldn’t stop myself. However, when Mummy added ‘Poppy, you were a GOOD girl. You stayed out, and were worried about Amber,’ I realised that my crown of goodness was definitely slipping. I stood at Mummy’s feet, looked up at her, and then wagged my tail cheerfully, to show her that I was going to be good from now on, and I also forgave her for making me get on that stool. To my amazement Mummy said ‘don’t you try and flannel me, young lady. That was NAUGHTY!’ Then she went indoors again, and she called ‘you’d better follow me too, or there will be big trouble.’ It’s lucky I understand everything she says, and I hurried in as fast as my pretty nimble legs could carry me. ‘And don’t do that just after you’ve been spayed,’ Mummy added, ‘it will cost me a fortune.’ Honestly, all she thinks about is money!

So, those are the two things that I must not do again. The first one was an accident, so I can’t be sure that I won’t. The second one was something that I always want to do, and I can’t be sure I won’t give in to temptation another time as well, but I’m really going to try hard to resist. The thought of Poppy becoming ‘best behaved dog’ is simply too horrendous to contemplate. Actually, if it ever did happen, Mummy muttered that she herself might have to move out!


As Stubborn As A Mule?

August 2nd 2009 9:06 am
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Oh dear, I am in danger of losing my Best Behaved Pup status in this house. In fact, I think I may have lost it already. I am, apparently, as stubborn as a mule. I didn’t know that shoes could be stubborn, but that’s what Mummy keeps saying. She says ‘will you STOP? You’re as stubborn as a mule.’

The problem is that Mummy, although she tries, doesn’t actually understand what it’s like to be a dog. You see, we have a gap between our back garden and our neighbour’s back garden. They cut down some of their high fence and, in the days when Daddy was well, he put up some plastic looped fencing, two layers of it, to keep us in our garden.

Over time, I found that I could get on a stone bench we have and eat next door’s ornamental grasses, so the bench had to be moved, and I also dug under some of the wire fencing to try and get at a cat. By then Daddy was already ill and Mummy had to patch it up – none too well I might add.

All of that was what Mummy calls ‘Mildly Irritating’, but I managed to become ‘Supremely Annoying’ last week! We have been having terrible floods here in the UK, and on one of the days when it poured with rain non-stop last week, I saw something (I’m not saying what) in our neighbour’s garden. Mummy thinks it was either a hedgehog or some baby birds being fed on the ground, but probably a hedgehog. The moment I saw it, my hunting instincts came to the fore, and every time I was let out to do my business I simply dashed over to the fencing and tried to get through to next door. I tore down lots of the fencing with my claws and teeth, and when Mummy – looking hilarious in a raincoat and waterproof hat, with rubber gardening shoes on her feet – came out into the rain to drag me off and heaved heavy tubs in front of the gaps I’d made, I just shoulder charged the tubs the next time I was let out.

I have made a total mess of the fencing. I have wrecked it. Ruined it. It might as well not exist. During that day, Mummy had to come out over eight times – dressed in her fancy dress outfit – minimum to try and get me away. Also, she naturally wasted a lot of time and energy calling (yelling more like, our voice coach human brother would not have been pleased as she was squawking like a parrot) me. However, I am good at being selectively deaf and I simply pretended I hadn’t heard her. Some of the time I didn’t hear her, I was so intent on getting over next door for the kill.

To make matters worse, I managed to persuade Poppy to join in. She didn’t really know what she was doing, but she kept tearing up and down the fencing, and getting her long, long ears matted and full of bits of garden debris (that rather pleased me, as she’s chewed off some of my ears). She also hurt her eye on a piece of wire that I’d torn out of the plastic covering, which made Mummy even more cross with me. Furthermore, although I can refuse to do my business for an entire day and not make a mess indoors, Poppy can’t. Mummy dragged us in during the afternoon, looking like a drowned rat, told us off, and was getting on with giving the house a thorough clean when Poppy did a huge wee in the middle of the kitchen floor. Mummy said ‘that’s all YOUR fault, Amber’, but it wasn’t. I didn’t do it, Poppy did!

By the end of the day, I had broken Mummy’s spirit, and now she’s asked a builder man to come and measure up the part that I’ve broken for some 4’ high fencing. She certainly knows how to rain (how apt!) on a dog’s parade. Mind you, he hasn’t turned up yet, and Mummy is saying that with builders, rather like dogs I suppose, you never can tell.

Today she groomed us, and I decided to be very good indeed, so that got me some points back. Poppy was her usual nightmare self – last time she was good, so I was a little worried, but she reverted to her bucking, rearing, bug-eyed self today – and Mummy said that I was a good girl, so I’m hoping she might begin to forget the fight with the wire fencing. In fact, I know she would – if I didn’t keep going back and having just a little go at it, despite the fact that my prey has long gone.

We are off to the kennel again next Saturday, so that Mummy can have another break, and she rather unkindly informed me yesterday, as I was having a half-hearted dig at the wire and pulling on it with my teeth, that she can’t wait. If she’s not careful, she will damage my sense of self worth. Actually, it was all worth it to see her sloshing around the garden during the wettest day for years, trying to catch me and Poppy, AND attempting to put the wire fencing back with soggy string. I think she is almost as stubborn as I am. Why didn’t she just give in and let me through? I love her to pieces, but I will never understand her. There are some things that we dogs and humans will simply have to agree to disagree on I suppose!


On the road to recovery, thanks to all my friends here on- Dogster

July 7th 2009 8:04 am
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Phew, I’ve come over a bit dizzy! I have been whisked from home to the vet’s, and from the vet’s back to home more times than I care to remember over the past three weeks. I like our vet very much, but he was quite personal at one point. He told Mummy that I had ‘funny teats’. He has no hair, but I don’t go barking that all round the surgery.

I can’t remember much about some of it to be honest. I know I haven’t been well since March, and I’ve had a phantom pregnancy, and I didn’t want my food, but once I started vomiting and refusing to eat, it all became a little hazy. Apparently I had something called pancreatitis, and I had to stay at the vet’s on drips for fluids and antibiotics to help stabilise me. ME! I am the most stable girl you can find. It’s Poppy who is loopy. Also, I’m now told that I’m not able to digest fats, and never will be able to. No more chewing pieces of Poppy then, BOL!

Alas, no more tripe sticks, bits of the suet balls for the birds that used to fall to the ground (but don’t now as Mummy has moved them) and no more gravy bones either. Poppy is NOT pleased with me, but Mummy told her that I’d done her a favour, as it will help her keep her figure. She’s not very impressed. She told me she’d rather eat a few tripe sticks and lose her figure. She’s incredibly greedy. Life is not at all fair. I’ve never been greedy, but I’m the one who has to give up all the treats. I’m on a new, low-fat food as well. It’s quite nice, but I think I will find it boring after a while. Mummy says they do it in two flavours, but I miss my James Wellbeloved. It really was well beloved by me. Then, briefly, Poppy and I went onto Baker’s. That was scrumptious, but apparently has quite a lot of fat in it, so that’s out of the question. Mummy was making me worse by doing that, but she did it to try and get me to eat, so I forgive her!

I also have something called what sounds like ESEM. It’s a Cavalier thing, but I don’t have it badly. I was scratching near my left ear a lot, but it was full of ear mites. The drops killed them off, and so I don’t do that much now. Poppy liked the drops, which were thick and greasy, and so she has spent the past week and a bit licking them out of my ears and chewing on my ear fur and down that side of me. I look a real mess, which is probably why both of us are off to be groomed on Friday.

While I’ve been ill the bird population has increased considerably, although a couple flew into one of our windows and broke their necks. Mummy wouldn’t even let me eat them, but I’m sure there’s no fat on them. She’s put special bird stickers on all our windows to stop the birds from flying into the glass, and they’ve failed. What did she expect? I bet they birds think they’ve found a long lost relative and dash into the glass to meet them! Humans do the strangest things.

Poppy says that Mummy cried quite a lot while I was ill, especially one morning when the vet was going to get out his Big Needle. I don’t know how big that is, because I thought the ones he’d already used on me were pretty big. Poor Mummy, what with Daddy and me she’s not had a very good time lately. I’m sure I cheered her up when I re-arranged her little pebble garden two days ago. She gave a shout of joy when she saw what I was doing, and cried ‘Amber!’ at me, doubtless an exclamation of astonished gratitude.

Now I have to build up my strength, ready to be spayed at the end of August, as there’s something wrong with me in that area too. Oh joy! Still, I am very, very happy to be feeling a lot better, and I would like to thank all my wonderful friends on Dogster who lit candles for me, sent me candles and paws in my rosette box and kept me in their prayers. We all know that it made a big, big difference, and we know too that Emily kept watch over me while I was at my sickest, and helped me through it all.
THANK YOU everyone


Over 400 Years Old

June 18th 2009 6:48 am
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There’s been a human birthday around here recently; Mummy was about 420 I think, remembering how she works out our age. She didn’t do any of the things that Poppy and I like to do on our pawdays. She didn’t have a tripe stick, or if she did she hid it well from us, and she didn’t go for a walk. She did go out for lunch, but then as she admits she is often ‘out to lunch’ at the moment, bol!

I decided that the best present I could give her was to eat my breakfast and stop pretending I was going to have a litter, so that’s what I did. She was very surprised, but delighted too. ‘You’re an angel, Amber,’ she said as I licked my bowl clean and then played with Poppy. Yes, I am an angel, and a modest one too.

Poppy brought Mummy two dove’s feathers from the garden and laid them at her feet, and then she managed to lick Mummy’s hands three times just after Mummy had washed them. This is a token of Poppy’s love, but it doesn’t seem to be what Mummy wants when she’s about to give Daddy his medicine or make some sandwiches. ‘You SILLY girl!’ she said to Poppy, but not in a cross voice. I don’t think humans are allowed to get cross on their birthdays, even though they may claim that their patience is being ‘tried like a saint’s’, whatever that may mean.

Alex, who is busy in London at the moment, bought Mummy a new mobile phone. He said her old one was almost as old as he is, and that was why it couldn’t hold a charge. Poppy can’t hold a charge either. If she wants to charge at someone or something, she does. Mummy hasn’t appeared that active to us, but maybe she dashes around when we’re not looking. The new phone makes quite a loud noise, and Poppy and I don’t like it much. Mummy can see the letters better though, so doesn’t type ‘hopping yr dax gods will’ to Alex, which he says confuses him.

Mummy had some lovely e-cards, quite a few with barking dogs or tweeting birds on them. Poppy and I sat at her feet and listened to those every time she played them. They were probably meant for us anyway. Most good things are meant for us in this house, or so we believe. We can just tell. Poppy is a strong believer in this kind of thing. She says she’s psychic, but Mummy says she means psychotic.

In the evening, after Mummy had talked on the phone for half the night to various people, Poppy and I had some nice lap time. We snuggled on Mummy, licked her, burrowed under her arms and snored – gently in my case, like nothing on earth in Poppy’s case. Mummy said ‘what would I do without you, girls?’ and we couldn’t think of any answer to that. We just can’t imagine what she’d do without us. After all, clearing up the dog poo in the garden twice in the day and playing tug with Poppy until your arm aches must be most people’s idea of a perfect birthday surely? We hope so. We always aim to please – it’s just that sometimes our aim is a little off!


An Update On Daddy.

March 14th 2009 10:47 am
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So many kind people on Dogster have sent us good wishes, pawmails and cards, and kept us all in their thoughts and prayers over the past few weeks that I thought I would let everyone know how Daddy is doing.

After being very ill since before Christmas, he has been in isolation in hospital for nearly three weeks now, because he didn’t have any white blood cells. The doctors have improved them a lot, but they can’t do anything about the fact that he is now almost a total invalid, and can only walk a few steps, using a stick, and even then he’s out of breath. He has lots and lots of things going wrong, that Poppy and I don’t really understand, and next week he is being moved into an interim care home again. He went into one once before, but he is more ill this time and it’s thought that he will stay there until the end of April. After the end of April, if he hasn’t had to go back into hospital by then, Mummy will see if she can look after him at home for a time, caring for him for three weeks each month and then having a week’s break while he goes into respite for the final week of the month. If that doesn’t work out, then Mummy and Alex will have to look for a nice nursing home, where Daddy can have 24 hour care all day every day. At the moment the doctors don’t know exactly what is going to happen, and Mummy can only really take things a day at a time as the situation changes from day to day.

Of course Poppy and I have been on our best behaviour – at least I have! I snuggle on Mummy’s lap in the evenings, when she gets to sit down – she visits Daddy a lot – and I’m being extra vigilant with my barking. I don’t let the dogs over the back of us get away with anything at all! The other day the online grocery shopping arrived and I was barking my big, deep bark in the hall. The delivery man couldn’t see me, and was afraid to come in until I’d been shut up in another room, bol! I am taking over ‘manly’ duties in the absence of Daddy! Alex is home this weekend, but he hasn’t barked once at the dogs over the back, so I’ve had to keep doing it.

Poppy is very energetic and very hungry. She says it’s well known that absence makes the stomach grow hungry, which I’m sure isn’t right at all. The other day Mummy bent down to take some dog hairs out of the brush on the bottom of the vacuum cleaner and Poppy jumped up and ate the dangling beads at the bottom of her necklace. Mummy was NOT happy, and said Poppy was greedy and stupid. Poppy told me that she might be greedy, but she is not stupid, bol! The beads reappeared from the other end of Poppy the following day, but Mummy said she wasn’t going to have them re-strung!

So, as you can tell, Poppy and I are keeping things going as normally as possible, and we are really grateful to everyone on Dogster for their kindness during these difficult days. Mummy is really touched by it and has asked me to say thank you on her behalf. (Poppy is just ‘touched’ in my opinion, bol!)


We have to go away for a week

December 26th 2008 4:11 am
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Poppy and I want to say a HUGE thank you to all our Dogster pals who sent us gifts and cards for Christmas. We had a wonderful time playing with the toys, and we're still having a wonderful time today!

Mummy is sorry but she isn't able to write individual thank you pawmails to people yet, as Daddy is very, very sick and has been taken into intermediate care, while they wait to get him to a special consultant on Monday or Tuesday. He's too sick to be nursed at home at the moment, but Mummy and Alex are visiting him a lot and so Poppy and I would be left alone here in the crate for hours at a time. Poppy can't be trusted out of the crate, naughty girl!

Mummy and Alex also want us to have some walks, and they're not able to take us at the moment so we are going back to the kennel that we like where we get four walks a day. We just hope that Mummy is back in training when we return, as she's got bad shingles at the moment!

We are leaving tomorrow and the plan is for us to come back the following Saturday morning. Alex goes back to London that evening, so we will see him for a whole day. However, if Daddy gets any worse we may have to stay a few extra days.

We both hope that all our pup pals and their families enjoyed their Christmas Day too, with plenty of gifts and nibbles - we didn't get many nibbles as Mummy didn't do the proper Christmas lunch, but she'll do it another time - and would also like to wish you all a very, very happy New Year, full of good health and happiness.

See you again very soon, we hope.

Amber & Poppy

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