Tuesday, 25 September 2007

trimming class

On Sunday we went back to where last week's Airedale Club fun day was held. This time it was to their trimming classes so Mum and Dad can figure out how to prevent me becoming a woolly mammoth. I've been doing a merino sheep impression lately and they thought it was time to release my inner Airedale.

So without any warning whatsoever I was put up on a trimming table and a lady snipped off all the heavy hair from my ears. Dad let out an audible gasp as he is very fond of my puppy curls. But as one of my ears is not standing up properly, they need to take the weight off. If that doesn't work, there are dark mutterings about gluing my ears and I DO NOT like the sound of that at all.

I'm not posting a pic of my trimmed ears yet. I am so shy. My parents keep looking at me and laughing, saying they don't recognise me. I don't recognise myself! I'm still a work in progress, waiting for proper grooming tools to arrive in the post. When I get my courage up I will show you the new me.

Here's two pics from the trimming class. When not on the table, we all got to charge around together and wrestle.

We all got to meet Saffie for the first time - she's 7 months old and her parents are concerned that she is still a little mouthy. So we thought we'd get her on the floor for a bit of socialisation, and she loved every minute. I'm the one on the left. You can spot me by the curly tail - I was born a couple of weeks after the tail-docking ban came into effect, so I'm one of the first Airedales around with a full-length plume.


Saturday mornings are getting better and better. I've started going round to see my friends Rooster and Sol whose mum is running a puppy training session. More pup play = more good!

OK, so my level of concentration is poor at times and I just want to jump around like a nutter, but I'm only five months old and allowed to be an Airehead.

Though sometimes I'm impeccably well behaved. Here I am with Rooster and Sol doing a triple sit for their human boy, AJ.

I had a good wrestle with Jess the Jack Russell and left loads of blood all over her nice white coat. No, I didn't maul her - I'm just teething really badly at the moment and anything I chew gets covered.

What with my puppy class on Monday nights, I'm expected to sort my fuzzy brain out and start learning a thing or two. Darn. I thought it was just a puppy play party.

So how come our cats don't have to go to class, huh? Why don't they do tricks? I don't see them having to wait for the signal before they are allowed to eat their dinner. They get to walk over the table. They get to sit on the sofa. They get to sleep in the bedroom. And they don't do a SINGLE TRICK!

Thursday, 20 September 2007

Lydford Gorge

I've been meaning to post these for a while but keep getting sidetracked. This is a walk I went on a couple of weekends ago to a place on the edge of Dartmoor, called Lydford Gorge. It was just so beautiful I had to show you, even if the pics are more scenery than dog.

A lovely trail through the forest

Which winds down to a stream with old copper mines alongside. I could smell the bats in here.

And then I got to swim below a 90 foot waterfall called the White Lady.

The way back was along precarious paths on slippery stone. A lot of the time the humans had to hold on to the handrail and even my feet were unsteady. The river would suddenly gush down through cuts in the rock and over rapids and waterfalls. Dogs definitely not allowed off lead! The roaring noise of the water spooked me a bit.

At one point the river falls into a chamber it has cut which they call the Devils Cauldron. It's like a cave full of roaring water swirling boulders around making a huge noise. Dogs weren't allowed down there and you can see why - this is the way in and the steps are on the top left.

But I really impressed Mum and Dad when they took me on the metal walkway above the Cauldron. The noise is deafening, and I could see through the grille I stood on right down into the waterfall below. I only hesitated once, but then went straight on over. Cool me, huh?

I was bored

My humans bore me sometimes.

They sit upstairs in their offices staring at their computers and they just don't realise I should be centre of attention AT ALL TIMES.

So I did a bit of indoor digging on the futon. Quite satisfying really as it is full of this great lumpy cotton stuff.

Mummy couldn't help but laugh, fortunately. She was grateful I didn't chew up the patterned throw which they haggled for in the Grand Bazaar in Istanbul.

Heh heh.

That's for next time.

Wednesday, 19 September 2007

An apocalypse of Airedales

What a weekend. First there was Chilli's party (what a blast!) then I went to my friend Rooster's house for a dog training session. (I've got a great photo from that but I'll have to post that another day).

Then on Sunday my parents had a wild surprise in store. They popped me in the car and an hour later arrived at a village hall. It was FULL OF AIREDALES!!!! Wooo hooo! I've never met another 'dale since leaving my litter, and here I was at the annual fun day of the West of England and South Wales Airedale Terrier Club.

I peed the floor with excitement straight away, not least because I was being sniffed by a very handsome young boy called Gunner. Then I headbutted the table from underneath and sent coffee all over the posters that were about to be hung up. But no-one cared!

Here's a pic of me sniffing Gunner's bum while he checks out Nigel.

I had the most fabulous time. Not only getting to meet huge grown up man-dales, but even little puppies much smaller than me. Mum and Dad realised how suddenly I've become big when they saw the little pup-girls.

We didn't just stand around, though. We played games!

First up was musical chairs. You can't see me in this pic as I'm right at the back.

musical ears

This pic shows stupid mummy (blue top) trying to sit on some poor boy. The boy is laughing but his dog is looking seriously affronted.

musical chairs

Next up was the Egg and Spoon Race. Dad got a real serious look on his face. Ultra competitive. With a shout of 'vamos' we were off - and won our heat.

egg race

Here's heat two - one smart dog has decided to run on his own, while Brillo is towing his mum.

egg race 3

The finals were won by Nigel, despite his mum dropping the ball.

egg race 5

The most amazing thing about Nigel is that he is totally blind. He had a degenerative retina condition and was blind by six years old - he is now ten and a half. My mum really fell for him as he is the most noble, calm and gentle dog. And if you didn't see his eyes you wouldn't guess he couldn't see.


My mum also fell in love with Ruby, who is a supersweet ball of fluff a bit younger than me. Mum's camera just kept turning her way.

super cute Ruby

She has had severe medical issues and is on constant medication, so she is a bit smaller for her age than she ought to be. But she is such a delight, and we hope to meet up with her again soon.


We played a ridiculous game of Mummies. People race the clock to wrap their dogs up in toilet paper like a mummy. Most dogs oblige.

mummy 7

Nigel looks like a Crusader Knight.

mummy 5

Even this gorgeous little pup (I think she's called Ellie) took it like a champ.

mummy 6

Poppy the puppy lay back and thought of England.

mummy 8

Not me.

Every piece that Dad got on me I removed before he got the next one going. Just call me Houdini. He was laughing so hard every shred of his dexterity deserted him.

mummy 2

Sorry, this is turning into a looong post.

I met Jess, who looked so much like me we had to check we weren't related. She's one month older than me, and after the smooching...


... came the wrassling. Stanley would be proud of me. I'm on top, by the way.


Next up was fancy dress. I thought I would just be watching as my Mum and Dad didn't organise a costume. But then the most amazing thing happened. I met Oscar's mum and dad, Katy and Martin, and Katy had brought with her the costume Oscar would have worn if he had been able to be here. It was made by the fair hand of Butchy and Snickers' mum. And I got to wear it!

fancy dress 2

It was a bit big so my trousers fell off if I walked, but I looked so splendid I won third prize! Big kisses to Katy, and to Oscar too. I can't fill his shoes, but I hope that somewhere he was looking down and laughing too.

fancy dress 3

Here's the first prize duo. She looks like a shotgun bride and he looks like he can't wait for the party to be over and the wedding night to begin.

fancy dress

There were other games too, like Hunt the Sausage and Best Groomed, and an agility course too. Katy took me round the agility because my parents were too boring. Actually, I think Dad was still knackered after his Egg and Spoon exertions and Mum was as usual holding the camera. I was a bit all over the place, but it was still fun.

I didn't enter the best groomed because I am a woolly mammoth at the moment.

Anyway, I had five hours of crazy Airedale fun, then we went home grinning. Mum and Dad thought I would be worn out, so we went to the pub. but there I met a Jack Russell puppy called Norman and we went bonkers. A whirling crazy ball of excited puppies. I always have energy for fun!

This weekend we may go back to the Airedale Club as they are holding a grooming class. I'll be able to see Ruby again. Aroooooo!

Wish you were all able to come play with me too!

Saturday, 15 September 2007

party time

Oh boy, I almost missed my lift to the party. It's Chilli's adoption day party and I've turned up almost too late. Without a bikini. At least I don't have to wax my legs like those poor human girlies.

Time to play with Scruffy and Lacie and Koobus and Ruby and Maggie and Mitch and everybody else! Yay for Chilli!

Uh oh. Mitch will see me without a bikini.

Ooooh nooo! Panic.

Friday, 14 September 2007

this made my day

Look what Maggie and Mitch sent me!

How lovely is that! It totally made my day and I can't sit down for my tail wagging so hard. It's even more exciting as it comes from such a super cool duo. I would even share my peanut butter ice kong with them for that. Pity they live so far away because I really want to go over and play right now.

I know exactly who to pass the love to...

Scruffy and Lacie. Like me, they have only been blogging for a short time, but apart from being outrageously cute, are the funniest things on four legs. Hurrah for S & L, and pass it on, guys!

Thursday, 13 September 2007

great news

Oscar's mummy and daddy have some great news regarding a new addition to the family.

Fantastic! I'm really pleased for them, so here is a reminder of how cute an Airedale pup is:

mysterious interloper

Last night I kept standing in the garden in total darkness, barking.

My barking usually makes my parents laugh because I have a silly high-pitched girly bark. Kind of embarrassing, as I'm getting big enough to have attitude, but I open my mouth and I go all David Beckham.

Anyway, last night I wasn't just making arf arf sounds. I was joining them up into one long boowoowoowoowoo. So Dad grabbed a torch and did the manly thing. And this is what I'd found:

A hedgehog!

I tried to nose it and got a shock. Funny, because I once had a plastic hedgehog squeaky toy and that freaked me out as well.

By the way, don't you think it typical that Dad grabbbed the torch and Mum grabbed the camera?

Wednesday, 12 September 2007

dog o' the earth

I had a great walk on the weekend which I keep meaning to post about. But then another day is another walk, and I get distracted.

Yesterday Mum and I went to retrace a familiar route through the local footpaths, but things went a bit pear shaped. First she had to get me over the world's most difficult stile. Normally she has to haul herself up because the steps are way too high, but add to that 12 wriggling kilograms of Airedale pup in her arms and it is all rather tricky. Once over, though, we found our way blocked by this lot.

Much hollering, arm waving and barking wouldn't shift them, so we had to retrace our steps. We had to do about a kilometre up the lane to get to where we wanted to be.

Round here the lanes are very narrow, with hedgebanks on either side that are much higher than the cars. We met a white van twice which had about a foot clearance to squeeze past us. Mum squashed me against the bank with her legs and hoped I didn't panic. Actually I am rock solid on this - not fazed at all. Annoyed to have my ears stung by nettles, but not bothered by the van.

In the end we had a great walk. We practised my recall, which I obliged with at first. Then I did my special trick of running off in the opposite direction as soon as I hear the word 'come', laughing over my shoulder as I go.

This time, mum got her revenge. Leona, who runs my puppy class, suggested that Mum hides if I do a runner to stop me feeling so confident.

So evil Mum did just that.

I found her hiding in the grass and I was not pleased that she saw the concerned look on my face. Anyway, I got treats, so all is well.

I also got my own back.

I'm thirsty, I said.

OK, she said, have a drink from that little stream.

OK, I said, ignoring the clean water and inching along to a deep puddle of slime. I lowered myself in with a look of pure joy. Nothing beats cool mud on my belly. It was the finest, smoothest, stinkiest mud I've ever found.

Best thing is that when she took this photo of me rolling the mud off on the grass, she hadn't yet realised that I was simultaneously rolling in something dead. In fact, I think it is actually hanging out of the corner of my mouth in this shot.

Ha ha ha ha ha haaa!

Monday, 10 September 2007

baa baa baad dog

Meet the sheep.

I'm fascinated by them. So woolly, so smelly, and so very very strange. They don't belong to us but live in our paddock. I get a bit miffed when my parents chuck fallen apples over the fence to them instead of leaving them all for me. But if I stick my head through the fence I usually manage to get some sort of snack, if you know what I mean. I have a nice green smile afterwards.

I'm convinced that if I could get in the field with them we could have a great game of chasing. Apparently these are bad thoughts. But look, the ram lamb agrees. He even licks my nose sometimes and I manage a sneaky bite back.

Snowy, the white ewe, stamps her feet at me sometimes but I don't pay any attention. But Bongo the ram is a different story. He is one serious dude and I am not messing with him.

He shoos all the ewes and lambs away then comes back to stare me down. He even scares my mum and dad. They've been warned to take a big stick with them if they go in the field, but they'd rather stay out. At least Bongo doesn't look like the fence-jumping type. As you can see, though, I love to stick my head through the fence at him, which makes my mum get all nervous. I keep telling her to relax, that I can pull my head in fast enough if he comes at me, but she is still twitchy.


My mum's brother lives all the way over the other side of the world in Australia, so he only knows me through this blog. You never see my mum because she's the one behind the camera, but this prompted Uncle A to comment that I looked like my dad's dog.


I'm my own dog.

Saturday, 8 September 2007

time flies

Time flies when you're having fun. I haven't posted anything for aaaages and I have so much catching up to do on my friend's blogs. I'll get there soon, I promise!

Sometimes I seem like such a big grown up girl now.

And sometimes I regress. When I'm really acting the goat I seem to look months younger.

I've been hard at work on ways to drive my parents mad. First, I let myself out of the garden into the paddock, climbed over a wall and crossed one neighbour's garden through to the next - where I walked into their house and promptly stuck my tongue in the ear of lady who was sitting on the floor with her baby. Bold as brass.

Then I went to the pub all by myself. I left dad walking down the canal towpath, shot off down the steps and across two car parks, and only hesitated when I found another dog in the pub garden. Besides, I didn't have any money to be a boozehound.

I've chased the cat a few times, wallowed in the wildlife pond at the bottom of the orchard and even found a hole in the orchard fence to take off and sneak a peek at the chicken coop in the next field. Oh, and I tried to do a huge poo in the middle of the Argos store, only mum started running as soon as she saw me squat so most of it happened out on the high street pavement. I blame the carrots I ate on that one.

I'm a bit of a handful. but I'm not losing sleep over it.