… the lady said as she spun round to do a double take at my dogs on their early morning walk. I’ve been trying to put off the inevitable comments from neighbours and fellow dog walkers since arriving home with New Boy. It was going to happen sooner or later ... at 7am on Saturday morning we went out for our slightly earlier than normal walk. Not a soul about until we reached the beck. Here a lady passed us as the pack stopped to piddle. She continued a couple of steps and spun around quickly looking at me aghast! I wasn’t quite sure what she was going to say but the familiar … “you’ve got your hands full” came out. I agreed that yes I had but “there’s room for one more yet”.
This is something I, and I’m sure other multi-dog owners, am used to hearing. Other frequent comments include “are they all yours?” and “are you a dog walker?”. I’ve never felt the urge to make similar comments to the people I see approaching me with three or four children at their side. I wonder what it is about dogs that solicit such comments.
It amuses me when we get the “you’ve got your hands full” from the single dog owner; you know the one, the one that’s being dragged along by their dog who is five yards ahead. It’s usually quite clear which of us actually has got their hands full … and with mine all walking nicely beside me, it’s not me! We also get some lovely comments, “what well behaved dogs”, “what beautiful dogs” … and of course they are!
We’ve been minding a friend’s farm for a couple of days. This morning we woke to a deep blue sky, sunshine and heavy frost. I took Womble Bum and Handsome Lad out with me to feed the ponies and sheep. Womble Bum doesn’t work sheep but she’s a very useful deterrent to have around when feeding them, as they will try to mug me at the earliest opportunity if they think they’ll get their hay a bit quicker. Handsome Lad has more sense than to follow me into the field as there are two in this flock that don’t think of themselves as sheep, and neither it would appear do the rest of the flock. Dolly the Herdwick and Dotty the Jacob. Dotty is particularly useful with her fine set of horns … dog or human? She really doesn’t mind who she goes for.
Having finished the early morning jobs it was time for a walk on the allotment. I have been very lucky with the New Boy, he is fitting in so well. It could have been very different. He’s got an excellent recall, walks very nicely on lead and gets on so well with the other dogs. At the farm he’s running around with his sister, dad, granny, aunties and great grandparents. It’s a nice sight to see, so many generations of family members all enjoying each others company.