Tuesday, 29 March 2011

Paddy - happy....and sad

Paddy and Guinness really miss Lisa as she only comes home once a month, so they go a bit OTT when she arrives! Paddy's joy soon disappeared when he tried to play with a bumble bee. The bee did not appreciate the attention and stung him on the lip. This is not a very good photo but you can see the very swollen lips. Guinness is far more sensible: he chases butterflies!

More stories. . . .

It has been many months since I wrote about Paddy and Guinness, primarily due to the guest house being so busy. However the dogs have continued to create mess and destroy anything they can get their teeth into, but they have also provided a great deal of laughter and love. So for those of you who have been waiting patiently for news, I shall endeavour to bring you up to date.

During the Spring bank holiday Lisa decided to take Paddy to London. Paddy is Lisa's dog but as she lives in a tiny flat in London he is residing at The Greenwood for now. Lisa sent me an account of his trip to the city.

We wanted to see how well the boys fared being split up for a few days so I took Paddy to London to stay with me and Jamie to stay in our little flat in North London. We packed up his bed and popped him in the back of the car and both Jamie and I were very nervous at having the responsibility of looking after a five month old puppy who had never been away from his brother .

Nether of the puppies had been in the car for longer than half an hour so we were unsure as to how well Paddy would fare in the back of the car. After just over half an hour on the motorway a very nasty smell filled the car so we came off at the next motorway services to see what had happened. We opened the boot to find Paddy had been quite sick on his bed, but his little tail was still wagging and he seemed very bright and happy. We took him out of the car to stretch his legs a little and gave him a drink. We decided we would rather throw the bed away than travel the rest of the way with the smell.

We got to London and took Paddy straight to the park for a toilet break; luckily the park is virtually outside our front door. His tail was still wagging and we had a little run around together. He didn’t seem to be missing his brother at all. As soon as we got him into the flat he seemed to be looking for Guinness. He ran through the rooms and then looked at us with quite a puzzled expression. Then he ran around some more and went to crouch in the middle of the floor for a number two so we quickly rushed back out to the park again. When we came back we gave him a cuddly toy of Mickey Mouse which he seemed to instantly adore and gave him some dinner that he wolfed down. We then all snuggled up on the sofa and Paddy had a little snooze.

We decided to let Paddy sleep on the bed with us as it was his first night away from home. Paddy didn’t really settle and every five minutes he would wriggle and move. We tried shutting him in the hall but he just whined and then started barking when someone walked past the front door. I thought I would stay up with him and sleep on the sofa because he seemed to relax more there. Paddy woke me up about 4:30am to go to the toilet so we off out to the park again. I went off to work at 8am and left my two favourite boys at home with Jamie giving me hourly updates. Luckily I didn’t have a busy day; I nearly fell asleep at my desk. Having a puppy is hard work!

Jamie said that Paddy was well behaved and everytime Jamie wasn’t giving him enough attention or using the computer instead of playing, Paddy would try and lie on Jamie’s hands!

That evening we all sat on the sofa together and Paddy had a good sleep. We took him out to that park for a toilet break and then got ready for bed. We tried putting Paddy’s bed just outside our bedroom door but he whinged until we gave in and let him on the bed. Again he wouldn’t settle so I let him out of the bedroom. He went out and jumped on the sofa. He gave me a little look as if to say “I’ll be ok here” and put his head down to go to sleep. I was a little concerned I would wake up to a sofa completely chewed and mess everywhere but when he woke up at 5:30am the place was spotless. He was obviously desperate for the loo so we went out to the park. He seemed to have bags of energy this morning and it was a really fresh dewy morning so we had a great run around together. When we got back to the flat Jamie told me to go to bed for a few hours, he would stay with Paddy and make sure he was happy.

Later on in the day a friend of mine, Catherine was coming to meet our puppy. We walked Paddy down to the tube to meet her but she was running late. Paddy has an inability to stand still for any length of time (something he hasn’t grown out of) so while I waited for Catherine, Jamie took Paddy back to the flat.

Catherine and I spent the afternoon playing with Paddy keeping him happy and then took him for a final walk in the park before heading back to Somerset. On this walk Paddy managed to eat the largest pile of dog poop I think I have ever seen! I made Catherine promise not to tell Jamie because I knew he wouldn’t want to drive Paddy back after that from fear of him regurgitating his snack!

I made sure that this time Paddy was on the back seat with Jamie, rather than in the boot but Jamie wasn’t taking any chances, he had a duvet, covered in a newspaper across his lap and we drove back with the windows down. I was terrified Paddy would be ill again but he seemed to almost enjoy his journey back to Somerset. We didn’t need to stop once and Paddy wasn’t ill. It was a good experience although a very tiring one, but I don’t think we will be repeating ir again anytime soon!!!

Thursday, 1 July 2010

Paddy can jump!

From the start Guinness was the jumping dog. Paddy would get through fences by squeezing under them, but Guinness would climb catlike up the fencing until he found a large enough space to get through.
This all changed on May 19th. Normal morning routine was in progress except that I had been so busy with breakfast I had not fed the dogs. Guinness was lying outside the door whining, so I assumed he was hungry. I finally had a chance to tend to the dogs and was a little surprised to find Paddy gone, especially as all the doors were closed. The only explanation was that he had jumped out of the window! This was confirmed seconds later when a guest came down and told me he had seen Paddy sniffing around on the front lawn. Alarm bells rang because there is nothing to stop the puppies running onto the A38 from the garden. Breakfast service came to a standstill, guests left the tables and a search party was formed. After 10 minutes (which felt like 30) we had not found him. So I again walked up to the main road and suddenly saw Paddy running at top speed down the driveway opposite, towards the busy main road. There was not an immediate gap in the traffic, and with mounting panic I eventually ran across just as he came to the entrance. Fortunately he saw me and swerved onto the pavement into my arms. If he had continued in a straight line he would have run under the wheels of a passing police car, the consequences of that do not bear thinking about. I could not be cross with him as I was so relived he was still alive.
Later on in the day I answered the front door and Paddy came too - he had jumped over the baby gate, which is supposed to stop them getting to the front of the house. His morning adventure seemed to have given him the confidence to defy all barriers.
2 days later I stupidly left the upstairs baby gate open whilst cleaning the bedrooms, unbeknown to me the puppies came up to explore. They went into a room I had serviced and jumped all over the bed with muddy feet. I came out of a different room to find Guinness wandering along the landing and expected to see Paddy following. But there was no sign of him. It was then that I discovered the mess they had made of my clean room, so I followed the muddy paw prints. Unbelieveably they led to the open window, and were also on the outside ledge. Paddy had jumped out of a first floor window! Heart pounding I raced downstairs expecting to find a very damaged dog in the flower bed. However he was lying quietly in the hallway. Carefully I felt him all over and he appeared to be unhurt. The only telltale sign was a very wet coat. Somehow he had fallen through the wet bushes without impaling himself and landed on his feet. He is a very lucky dog.

Monday, 28 June 2010

4 months old - May 2010

Guinness and Paddy have been with us for a couple of months and their different personalities are beginning to show. Paddy is very confident, can be defiant and thinks that everyone who visits the guest house has come just to see him. Consequently I have had to buy baby gates for passageways and staircases, as not everyone likes to be pestered by an over-enthusiastic puppy. In contrast Guinness will stand back and assess a situation before committing himself. He is definitely the clever one and if he can misbehave, but let Paddy take the rap, he will.
At breakfast time I try to eat my food in between feeding guests and saying goodbye to those checking out. One morning I had to see to a guest halfway through eating my cereal. I was astonished when I returned, to find Paddy standing on the dining table demolishing the contents of my breakfast bowl! He had climbed onto the chair and from there onto the table. Guinness meanwhile was innocently lying on his bed. . . then I noticed an empty packet of treats lying next to him on the floor. He had evidently climbed onto the table as well, stolen the treats and retreated to his bed.
A couple of days later I had inadvertently left the kitchen door open (don't tell the Environmental Health Officer!) and discovered Paddy in the kitchen with his nose in the overturned waste bin, and rubbish all over the floor. Naturally Guinness was not in the kitchen, however a tell-tale piece of paper was hanging from his mouth - caught again.
Of course they are both still regularly getting into the veggie patch. I'm not sure the asparagus will survive being dug up again. The day after the kitchen incident I was fed up with constantly removing Paddy from there so I gave him a time out inside, away from Guinness. He showed his defiance by pulling my pot of newly sprouting corainder from the shelf and spreading it all over the floor. What can I do to change the behaviour of a creature who enjoys being naughty?

Helpful pups

I may give the impression that the puppies are nothing but trouble! However they can be very helpful. Whilst digging an area ready to grass it Paddy thought he could help remove the weeds.

Then they both decided I was not doing a good enough job, so they took over. In fact they dug until they uncovered a bone, which, incredibily must predate my ownership of the property (Coco did not have bones to eat or bury).

After their hard work it was playtime - Guinness thought trampolining seemed a good idea. Paddy was a little unsure......

He preferred to relax in the sunshine

Tuesday, 8 June 2010

Sleepy- heads

At first human contact was the most important factor when sleeping......


More often than not they curl up together . These days they tend to spread themselves out, on the sofa if they can, which does not leave a lot of space for me! They will soon need another bed as the first one did not last very long, as you have already seen.

Their favourite position is upside-down

Friday, 28 May 2010

Making friends

Paddy and Guinness were introduced to other dogs as soon as they had their injections. Having previously had a dog who had not been socialised properly, I was determined to be able to go for walks without having to avoid other dogs. Muffin, a bouncy black lab, was the first dog to call in. Paddy was so excited and wanted to play straight away. Guinness, on the other hand, was terrified and hid behind a bush until he found enough courage to come out. Even then he made sure with sister Bella there was a sturdy pair of human legs to hide behind, and he squealed whenever Muffin got close to him. Paddy started a game of chase but then looked over his shoulder to see this giant lab running after him, at which point his courage failed and he squealed and hid behind a bush!
Their next encounter was with Winston, an energetic field spaniel. Winston was not in the least bit interested in the puppies and thought it was more fun to play chase with their ball. Again Guinness was not very brave, but he was better than the first time. So we decided a familiar face would perhaps give them more confidence. Bella came over and they recognised her immediately and had a wonderful romp.
Now it was time to vist friends in their own homes. So we went for a barbecue lunch and introduced the pups to Summer and Sacha, 2 beautiful golden retrievers. Sacha, an old lady, decided to absent herself from the party. Summer, however was thrilled to have two playmates and they had a fabulous time charging around the garden. Guinness was much braver, and Paddy was his usual excited self. I was assured that the garden was escape-proof....until we realised that Paddy and Guinness were missing. They had found a ditch where the fence was insecure and wandered off through a walled garden and an orchard. Neither of them was the least bit worried when I eventually found them and they had obviously had a great adventure.
They also found the pond in the garden, and Guinness
wanted to investigate further.
Since then they have met many more dogs whilst walking around the village, and at training classes and so far have been very friendly, if a little over-exuberant. Some dogs are a bit bewildered when confronted by these two bouncy puppies, but on the whole they all get on well.