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W/C 2nd December 2019

Monday 2nd December

Dembe was shattered today after Agility training yesterday and refused to get up and go for a walk before Jay left for work at 6am. Dembe stayed in bed with me whilst Jay got ready which is most unusual as he normally goes into scrounge mode as soon as he wakes.

Poor baby has an upset tummy today and has done 3 huge mounds of very loose poo in the garden which were an absolute delight to pick up as you can imagine! We think he is wheat intolerant, he is fine in himself, not even a gurgling tummy. Just not a solid poo in sight so he has been dosed up with some tummy meds to settle everything down. He didn’t want his breakfast when we got up but at 8.30am came into the kitchen looking for food so ate it then. He didn’t eat his dinner last night so I gave him that so it didn’t over load his tum with a bigger meal ( his breakfast is his biggest meal of the day) . Thankfully he isn’t being sick bless him.

His bottom is a weapon of mass destruction, it smells so bad I am gagging and trying to not be sick. He is passing it without making a sound so the first I know of it is when the smell hits me. It is making my eyes water.

I managed to get some more Christmas decorations up, Dembe insisted on joining me and climbing onto my lap covering me in kisses. He is so soppy. He has been such a good boy and left all the decorations alone.

Thankfully this evening he is back to solid poo…probably TMI

Tuesday 3rd December

I was awake at 4am due to injuring my back and neck yesterday . Dembe stayed asleep whilst I sorted out pain medications. At 5am I gave up and came downstairs, he then went into Jays room and woke him up as he wanted us all together.

At 11am we took Dembe out for a quick walk ( he had one earlier) as we wanted to ensure that he was fully toileted before we took him to Darts Farm, where he would be working for the first time in ages.

It was very busy at Darts Farm but Dembe was absolutely brilliant. Totally focused on Jay and waiting for his commands. He got petted by a few people but they all asked if it was ok before they did. We are always happy to accommodate if we are asked first.

Dembe had his first go in a lift today. He wasn’t too sure and had a little panic. He tried to jump up on my lap and managed to hit the accelerator of the mobility scooter. Thankfully I had the where with all to immediately remove the key to cut the motor, so I only moved an inch or so. He did get down and then calm down. The lift journey was seconds as it just goes up around 10 stairs to the right of the lift. It was just the first time he was in such an enclosed space.

Temptation was all around him in Darts and he touched nothing. Even the cuddly toys left on the floor were ignored along with all the tasty morsels in the food court area. Many dogs would have struggled to run the gauntlet of all those fabulous items. Dembe knows once he has his jacket on he is working and he is to follow Jay at all times.

He was shattered when we got home. He slept for much of the afternoon and was quite surprised when we got his lead out in the evening ready to go to agility training.

Hi Christmas decoration arrived whilst we were out at Darts Farm

Tonight was class 5 out of 6 classes of his Obedience training. We finished on a real high as Martin the trainer told both Jay and the other handler that they were both working at an advanced level. Martin said he wished he videoed the session as it was so good. Both dogs were off the lead doing sit, stay and walking to heel in each others presence. Back in June / July when we were doing level one beginners I would never ever have dreamed that Dembe would be the super star he is now. I told Martin that had we not have paid the money for the lessons after week one I would have never had returned due to being mortified at his behaviour. Now he is a star pupil. We use so much of what Martin at Happy Dogs has taught us at home. One of Dembe’s favourite games is leave – where we ask him to leave a toy and then after 30 seconds we allow him to take the toy back on the command of take. He also loves the “find it” game where we hide his bunny given to him by Imogen and Dembe has to sit and stay whilst it is hidden then we give him the “find find” command. His tail goes nuts and he has now started to rely on his nose more when searching rather than being purely visual which is how he started.

I was welling up watching Jay and Dembe work together as a team, they are clearly devoted to each other. They have both really grown in confidence.

Wednesday 4th December

Dembe was shattered after all that running around yesterday, he slept for the majority of the day.

He even took himself up to bed in the afternoon which is unheard of.

We are having issues getting him to eat again, it seems that he likes a new food for a few days and then decides that its not that good and makes a meal ( pun intended) out of eating it. Jay and I have to be his cheerleaders as he eats . We have tried making him snuffle for it, handing it to him. If it was a cocktail sausage / piece of ham he would take your fingers off. I think he is always going to be a pain in the arse when it comes to eating his food.

Jay and I are getting excited as we are taking him to meet Santa Paws on Saturday.

Thursday 5th December

Dembe spent the whole night cuddled into me either curled up between my waist and knees or with his head on my face, I love it when he sleeps like this, it makes me feel so loved. When I come back to bed after nipping to the toilet during the night he gives me a kiss to let me know he is there. I have never known such a sensitive and affectionate dog.

He did however wake at 5am , so we got up and I let him out. He was a good boy this morning leaving Jay alone until gone 6.30am before going upstairs and waking him up.

Jay and Dembe got lost on the common today, it was quite amusing as when Jay described the area where they had got lost I knew where they were immediately, as I had got lost there years ago with our Weimaraners Mollie and Travis. It was very boggy so Dembe had to be washed off outside when he got home.

Today he scoffed his breakfast.

We played loads in the evening as Jay was late night Dembe wouldn’t be getting another walk. It was hilarious as we were playing “find find” with his blue dinosaur, at one point he couldn’t find it, so he went to his toy box and pulled out his bunny toy that we normally play find find with. He is too bloody clever for his own good.

In the afternoon the oxygen engineer came to check my machine and canister, Dembe was very barky probably because he didn’t hear the door go as he was asleep on my bed and the next thing he knew a strange man was in the house. He did calm down though and then started showing off by going and getting the toys I was asking for from his toy box. The engineer was well impressed by him!

He was so manic this evening it was hilarious, all of a sudden it went quiet I looked down and he was asleep on the floor with his monkey.

Friday 6th December

Today Dembe’s Emma Bridgewater Tiny Tree Decoration arrived

Since 2017 we have had these decorations with the dogs names on, so we have Travis, Mollie, Willow and Frankie our Weimaraners who are now sadly all passed on. And now we have Dembe’s tiny to go with them.

He was a very cuddly boy today wanting to spend the afternoon curled up on my lap

Oh Hubby and I also treated ourselves to, some pint mugs

DD – Dembe’s dad

DM – Dembe’s mum

Saturday 7th December

Today is the day that Dembe gets to meet Santa Paws. We haven’t been to the place before so Dembe maybe a little nervous. We have ensured he has had a quick walk around the block so he doesn’t disgrace himself.

Dembe was very good considering he has never seen someone in fancy dress! He just barked at the photographer and that was only once. As soon as Santa told Dembe to sit he started to pose it was so funny. So here are some shots that Jay and I took. The first photo is the photographers

Love this outtake
he looks like he is smiling

Dembe has been shattered ever since and has slept beside me on the sofa.

Sunday 8th December

Dembe had a lie on this morning and didn’t wake up until 7am. Both Jay and I were in shock. He had a nice long walk up at the Airfield with Jay and then we had a bit of a chill out before his last agility training session of this year.

This week the trainer made a mega long tunnel with a bend in it. Dembe was the first dog to go through it. He adores doing the tunnels and gets so excited we have to try and bring him down again. He was also getting the hang of the weave poles a bit better and managed every other pole. He still doesn’t like the seesaw. I think we will have to go to the wobble board and build his confidence up from there. He just loves agility so much that we have signed him up for the next course in January 2020. Not that he is at all spoiled by us. Jay and I also enjoy it and it gets us out of the house on a Sunday.

W/C 25th November 2019

Monday 25th November

Oh dear it is the house of the sick here. Both Jay and I have been hit hard by a virus that has left us aching all over, sore throats and full of cold. Basically we feel like shite.

As Jay was on an early he took Dembe out for a walk before work. It is good extra training for him between classes as he doesn’t do enough on lead training. It wears him out as well because he has to use his brain instead of just running around like a blooming idiot. As soon as Jay went to work Dembe came back upstairs and snuggled down on the bed next to me. He was still fast asleep when I woke up at 7.50am which for me ( these days ) is really late.

The walk kept Dembe nice and calm, he must have sensed I wasn’t right as he was a super star all day. For such a young pup he is wise beyond his years.

We are still having problems getting him to eat so I have ordered a 2kg bag of Arden Grange, Lamb flavour in the hope this gets him eating. I do worry when he is eating less than 200g of food per day, yes he has some treats but we have cut right back on those so he really does need to eat his food. Fingers crossed I can get him eating again.

Paul popped over this evening to order his chromebook. Dembe still goes crazy every time he see’s his uncle Paul. We got his lick mat out and put some peanut butter on it. It worked liked a charm and he calmed right down. It does work really well.

Tuesday 26th November

We both still feel absolutely awful. Jay is working I have no clue how, as every time I stand up my legs are shaking. My throat is horrendous it feels like I have swallowed a packet of razor blades. If I didn’t have a load of stuff being delivered today Dembe and I would be tucked up in bed.

We both feel so awful it would be very easy to cancel going to obedience training this evening. But as there is only one other dog at the session it really wouldn’t be fair on them. We keep telling ourselves that it is only an hour. Dembe enjoys it so much.

Dembe had another lead walk this morning, Jay is on another early. He is getting really good on the lead because it has become a regular thing now. Dembe is obvious sensing that we are both unwell as he is being really good ( not that he is ever really bad, he can be trying but he isn’t a naughty dog) .

We had a good training session, Dembe so enjoys his sessions with Happy Dogs. We have just signed up to the next course being held in January 2020. God knows how cold it is going to be in that Barn but the little bugger loves his courses. You only have to say the trainers name to him and his tail goes mental.

Wednesday 27th November

Today is the first day I have felt relatively human since Sunday. Dembe got up when Jay got up at 6.30am , I managed to hang on for another 30 minutes.

The lamb Arden Grange arrived yesterday, he had some for his dinner last night and he hoovered it down. Whilst Jay gave Dembe his walk on the common I sorted out his breakfast. That got gobbled up in just a minute or so. We are hoping that this now means he will start eating again properly. It seems that the chicken flavour along with Salmon have fallen out of favour with him. Which is why I am loath to buy a big bag of any new food because he is such a fickle bugger.

Dembe spent the morning sleeping on my bed. He came downstairs at 12.30pm wanting a cuddle . He brought Monkey, Sprout and Carrot into the kitchen for us to play with.

We had a visitor this afternoon as Uncle Paul came over to collect his Chromebook as it arrived yesterday and I had set it up for him. I had to get the lick mat out again to get Dembe to calm down. He does get so excited when Paul comes over. Paul stayed for a couple of hours and Dembe did eventually calm down.

I fed Dembe at 4pm he was so excited for it he was doing spinnies in the kitchen waiting for his grub. He normally only does that for tinned fish.

Thursday 28th November

Jay was late night so he took Dembe for a nice long walk on the common. As you can see from the video he had a nice swim in the pond.

We had a cuddly day as I overdid it yesterday leaving myself feeling very rough again. Dembe seemed to know as he dropped his energy levels right back again bless him.

We went to bed just after 6.20pm and Dembe settled very quickly. However as usual around 10 minutes before Jay came home Dembe got up and went down stairs to wait for him.

Friday 29th November

Dembe has been a really horny little toad all week. The teenage hormones have definitely kicked in and if it stays still long enough it gets shagged to within an inch of its life. His bed upstairs is crusty with his “stains” and will be chucked in the wash tomorrow. He tried to shag me this morning and was most perturbed when I put an immediate stop to it.

Honestly how his willy hasn’t dropped off from over use I have no clue. It should at least be sore from friction burns.

Dembe was really good as I managed to get some sewing done. He put himself to bed in my room.

Saturday 30th November

I woke up at 4.30am due to feeling like I had a migraine brewing. Dembe came downstairs with me and kept me company. When the clock struck 6am Dembe ran upstairs and woke Jay up by dropping Monkey on his head.

Dembe was a very good boy whilst the Christmas decorations were brought down from the attic and again whilst the bedroom carpet and the hallway carpet were shampooed. I was panicking he would have a wee on them to have them smell more familiar but he left them alone. They were very grubby. I can’t remember the last time they were done. It is a few years ago now.

He has been a very happy boy all day as his whole pack was together, He spent the afternoon sleeping next to his dad on the sofa. At one point I came into the lounge and they were both fast asleep, with Dembe draped over Jays legs.

Whilst I was having a lie down, Jay sent me this photo via messenger. Just to let me know my boy was letting it all hang out. I’m not obsessed with his bits I promise but they look positively pornographic in this photo.

Sunday 1st December

Well how the hell did we get to December so bloody quickly. Blink and you’ll have missed November completely!

This morning Jay and I put the Christmas tree up which set Dembe off barking for some reason. Once it was in situ he stopped! He is a muppet at times.

We had a cracking time at agility training. Dembe thoroughly enjoyed himself.

Still not keen on the seesaw!
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W/C 18th November 2019

Monday 18th November

Jay was on an early today but Dembe didn’t wake me up until 7am. Just as well he did as my hairdresser was arriving at 10am. I haven’t had my hair done since August so it is long overdue. I was a bit concerned how De,be would be , so to ensure he wasn’t bouncing off the walls Jay took him for a walk at 4.30am.

Dembe has struggled to work out that neither myself or Rachel my friend and hairdresser can’t throw him toys or play with him whilst I am getting my hair done. He has brought into the kitchen the contents of his toy box trying to pique our interest. Normally in the morning he would take himself up to bed and sleep. Not today.

He only collapsed and went to sleep after 2pm, he was out for the count all afternoon.

His bull pizzles arrived today. He seems to like them.

Tuesday 19th November

Jay took Dembe to the beach first thing this morning, he played with lots of other Labradors. Jay said he had never seen so many in one spot.

Dembe is being funny with his food again. He barely touched his breakfast or his dinner. I tried all sorts to get him interested but nothing worked. We will be keeping an eye on him.

I had the dentist this morning. When I got back to the car you’d have thought I had been gone for a month. He was still all over me when we got back home. Jay took Dembe for another walk whilst I was in the dentist so he was knackered when we got home.

We had obedience training this evening. There must be only 2 dogs doing this course, Dembe and Bella as we are now on week 3 and it is still only us. Dembe kept crying and wouldn’t settle. He kept trying to get back to me. I had to explain to Martin that he was alerting which is something he has always done when I am going to be unwell. Unbeknown to Jay and Martin I was going into a migraine and was losing the vision in my right eye intermittently and my scalp felt like it was being shrunk.

Dembe really enjoyed the “find find” exercise Martin introduced to the lesson. Which was the beginning of learning search work. It is something we play in the evenings with Dembe. I hadn’t realised he was doing a lot of his finding visually and not by scent so we shall work on that.

Tonight we continues to work on heel, sit, stay . Dembe needs more sessions in between the sessions at class. It is a conversation I have over and over with Jay. Most of Dembe’s walks take place off lead. There is no point us going to training if he doesn’t do the work in between. It is obvious that the work isn’t taking place as Dembe isn’t improving with this.

Dembe was a lucky pup and had a birthday card and packet of treats from Happy Dogs for his birthday.

Dembe was sick around an hour after leaving dog training. Seems ok in himself.

Wednesday 20th November

Jay was late night so he took Dembe out for a nice long walk. At 10.30am he took Dembe out around the block to get some extra training in. Dembe had a bit of a loose poo on his second walk. So I have given him some stuff to settle his tummy.

He is still not eating very well. He is eating very slowly and not that fussed about treats. Which is unlike him. I had to wake him up at 5pm for his dinner and then he ate less than half.

Dembe spent ages on my lap today. He loves being on my lap.

We had a game of “find find ” this evening which he loved. When Jay got home after 10pm we were stood outside trying to get Dembe to go for his last wee. I was telling Jay that we had played ” find find” , Dembe disappeared indoors and then came out into the garden with his bunny that we had been playing “find find” with. I fell about laughing.

He had the remainder of his dinner at 10.30pm.

Thursday 21st November

Jay is on a 10-7 today, he took Dembe out on his walk early as he was desperate for his walk and had been chucking his toys around the lounge and yes i am talking about the dog. Dembe seems to be feeling slightly better but he is still not very interested in his food.

He wanted me to hold onto his antler chew for hours today. I have been trying to keep him quiet and rested as he still isn’t quite right. He isn’t turning his nose up at food he just isn’t eating very much at all.

Dembe puked all over my bedroom carpet. Managed to clear it up ok and just kept him quiet for the rest of the day.

Friday 22nd November

Dembe still not eating properly so keeping him quiet for another day. I have been treating him twice a day with his tummy stuff. He spent a lot of the day sleeping.

Saturday 23rd November

I managed to get Dembe to eat half his breakfast this morning which is more than he has eaten in one sitting all this week. He is certainly feeling better as he is much more active today and isn’t sleeping. Having done some research I can see that there is Canine norovirus going around in Devon. I personally think that he has picked something up from swimming in the sea on Tuesday. With the heavy rain there has bound to have been raw sewage released into the water. At least now he is starting to feel better.

At 3.30pm Dembe wandered into the kitchen looking for his dinner. Which is the first time this week he has come in looking for his meal. I gave Dembe the remainder of his breakfast as I didn’t want to overload his tummy. He eats it without having to have lots of encouragement.

When we are having dinner tonight Dembe is on the scrounge which is a brilliant sign.

We got an unexpected shout out on the sewing quarter TV channel yesterday which was a nice surprise.

Sunday 24th November

I woke up at 3am, I stayed in bed until 4am and then got up for an hour. My little boy came down with me.

I went back up to bed at 5am but Dembe decided he was done with sleeping. Luckily Jay got up and Dembe settled downstairs with him. Leaving me to grab an hour or so’s more sleep.

Jay took Dembe out for a walk as soon as it was light enough. They went to Woodbury Castle.

We were supposed to go to agility training today but we had to cancel as Jay has come down with a heavy cold and I have come down with some sort of virus that has left me feeling terribly lightheaded and achy.

It has been a very quiet Sunday.

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W/C 11th November 2019

Monday 11th November

This week has been quite nostalgic as incredibly our little pup turns one on Saturday. We can’t quite believe that it is happening. He is still our tiny baby, who needs protecting.

Jay was back on an early shift today. Dembe and I have our morning routine down pat, so he gets restless after 9am if he hasn’t been given his frozen Kong to entertain him whilst I get myself sorted for the day. He always runs upstairs and goes into my room, hiding between my wall and the bed. Its his favourite spot for eating the contents of his kong. Sometimes I forget he is there and it is only when I hear the slurping I remember.

I can quite honestly say I don’t know what I would do without Dembe He gives me the reason to get up in the morning, a lot of the time because he has woken me up by bouncing one of his toys off my head. He is my company during the day. Jay was right when he said around 12 months ago when I said I didn’t know if I wanted to be tied by another dog once we had lost the Weimaraners, we needed a dog and I needed it more than him. I am so glad we have Dembe, the empty house would have killed me.

He was so good at understanding that Jay was back at work today, there was no crying when he left the house, which he has done all week when Jay popped out to the shops.

We have had a day filled with cuddles.

I sent Dembe’s photo to happy dogs last Sunday- the one where he was falling asleep sitting up after his agility training class. They loved it and used it on their facebook page.

Tuesday 12th November

We are a bit thrown this week as Jay is working today and not his usual day off. I have a hospital appointment tomorrow so Jay has swapped his shifts so he can take me. Dembe seems to be fine with the change but it is me that is convinced it is Wednesday today.

Dembe decided this morning that I shouldn’t start sewing until much later so he sprawled over my legs and had a cuddle. He refused to move and I was struggling to get my mojo going.

We have had lots of cuddles today, he is so affectionate. Every time there was a long stitch out on the embroidery machine, we played or had cuddles.

Again I have got really emotional at the thought of him turning one. There are so many things upsetting me about it, the fact he is no longer a baby ( he will always be our baby ), that that marks one less year with him ( I think that I have become very hung up about worrying about him passing away after we lost Frankie and Mollie at the start of the year within 7 days of each other. This has caused me major anxiety all year if I am honest). I try really hard not to think about it but it is very hard after the events at the start of the year. Jay is struggling to understand why the thought of Dembe turning one has me in floods of tears. I wish I knew why it is effecting me so badly.

We had dog training this evening, Jay felt he was letting Dembe down but he wasn’t. Considering he normally hasn’t worked a full day before attending he did very well. Once Dembe settled he also did really well. Jay is far too hard on himself.

Wednesday 13th November

Jay was (finally) day off today, so he took Dembe down the beach for his morning walk. Dembe had a wonderful time playing with other dogs and swimming in the sea.

Jay said that there were a couple of barrel jelly fish that had washed up. Thankfully Dembe steered clear. Dembe needed a quick hose down when he got home to remove the salt from his coat. He was absolutely ravenous and wanted his breakfast immediately.

We had a quiet morning, Dembe took himself up to my bed for a bit and had a sleep.

Jay took Dembe out again at 2pm as I had a hospital appointment at 4pm. Due to road closures we were going to have to leave at 3pm. Unbelievably we managed to get a parking space straight away, so Jay and Dembe walked with me to the main entrance. Jay gave Dembe a walk around the hospital grounds and used it as a training session for him. It is a good environment to do it in as it is noisy and lots of people. It replaces the tranquility of the training room.

We got home at 16.45 and Dembe was starving as his dinner was late. He then after dinner went crazy for a bit throwing his sprout and crocodile around the lounge.

Thursday 14th November

Dembe went and woke Jay up just after 6am this morning when he worked out that he just wasn’t getting anywhere with me! Jay had him up the common before 7am . It was chilly at minus 1 but Dembe was still keen to get a swim in

I have been working on my embroidery machine this morning and instead of sloping off upstairs Dembe has been sleeping on the sofa with his head pointed towards the kitchen table so he can keep an eye on me.

It has been a day of cuddles and play with Dembe

As Jay was on a 10-7 today we spent the late afternoon on the sofa. Dembe slept and allowed me to carry on with my crochet.

Friday 14th November

Jay has two late nights on the bounce this week, so we decided that we would go and get Dembe’s birthday present today. First though we went to The Range and did some Assistance dog Training with him. He did really well and was very well behaved. We stopped and chatted with a member of staff and he patiently waited. He walked on his lead like an angel. I am not easily pleased and those of you who have read the blog from the beginning know that I will be very honest about how he behaves. I do have high standards. I am so impressed with him and everyone who see’s him when he is wearing his vest are always amazed at how young he is and how calm he is. Obviously he has his moments but not when he has his yellow jacket on.

After The Range we took his jacket off and we went to Pets At Home, where he got to choose his birthday present. He went mental for a huge Monkey and the staff were laughing at how excited he was.

We gave it back to him when we got home and then he kept carrying it around wagging his whole body. He wouldn’t let Jay or I near it as it was all his.

Monkey ( we are so original ) has been dragged all over the house and shown to us.

We had quite a quiet day with Jay being on a late night.

Saturday 16th November

OMG baby boy is 1!

Happy birthday Dembe

Jamie contacted the presenter John Scott and asked him to do a shout out for Dembe’s birthday which he did bless him. This is the 3rd time Dembe has been on or mentioned on the show since January this year.

Dembe had so many birthday wishes sent to him on social media it was really wonderful. People said some really gorgeous things about him. They have loved seeing him grow up over the year and how he has mended our broken hearts, He really has.

Here are some photos of when he was really tiny which in someways seems like a lifetime ago and in others like it was yesterday.

This is him now, the handsome devil

He had a lovely birthday and had lots and lots of treats.

Sunday 17th November

Dembe just wouldn’t settle last night and didn’t go to sleep until well past 11pm. As a consequence he didn’t wake up until gone 6.50am. I had to check the clock twice as I just couldn’t believe it. I was sure the little bugger would have me up at 5am!

Jay took him out for a nice long walk this morning up on the common. We avoided the beach due to the fact he was sick at Agility training last week possibly because he had sea water. He was starving when they got home. At around 10am a friend and her husband popped over for an hour and Dembe was giddy as a goat. I was dreading training as he was so excitable. He did however have a long nap once they left.

We then took him up to Woodbury common again for a run around and the toilet before attending agility training at 12.30pm. Dembe was confused and it wasn’t until we arrived that he twigged where we were and got excited.

Today Dembe built on what he learned last week and he has now jumped over two little jumps. He started learning how to do the seesaw. He was very nervous at first and would only put his front paws on and then would jump off again. Jay and Martin worked with him and the third time Jay took him to the SeeSaw he actually started going on it. I was discussing with Martin that it took Dembe a while to be brave enough to climb down the stairs. We did it over many training sessions to build his confidence up. Martin said Dembe is a thinker which makes him ideal for assistance work because he thinks about what he does. When he is acting like a loon it can be hard to see but when he gets that yellow jacket on he is a different dog.

He also started learning the weave poles as well. He loves the agility training and his bond with Jay is incredible.

Dembe was absolutely shattered after his agility training session again. He has been conked out for most of the afternoon and is snoring his head off on the sofa beside me now.

W/C 4th November 2019

Monday 4th November

Today was the first proper day of Jays holiday, I have the dentist at 9am , Dembe had me up at 5.30am so there was no chance at all of me sleeping in. He really hasn’t got the hang of this clock change thing. I hope he gets better at it as he gets older otherwise he is only going to be getting up at the right time of the year 6 months at a time!

Dembe got a nice long walk before he took me to the dentist. HE and Dembe stayed outside whilst I went in for my appointment as it was just an in and out one. Jay said he was very whingey when I was gone. When I came back he was so excited, you’d think I had been missing for months not a few moments.

He is very happy that his whole pack is together all the time at the moment. He has spent the majority of the day moving between us on the sofa having cuddles. He was thrown first thing this morning with both of us up and dressed so early. Now we are all back home he is much more relaxed.

Apparently my role is to hold his antler whilst he chews it

Tuesday 5th November

This morning we were up early again as I have an appointment at the eye hospital at 8.45am. Due to the heavy traffic we will have to leave very early to ensure we get there on time. The drive is just 18 miles but it will be at peak rush hour.

Again Dembe is very unsettled. We took him with us. Jay dropped me at the hospital entrance as he can assemble the scooter for me and then let me make my way to the appointment . Jay then found a parking space and walked Dembe up to the hospital entrance. It gave Dembe some good environmentalisation training – loud noises, people, mobility equipment, sirens etc It is also good practice for lead walking and keeping Dembe focused on Jay. Whilst they waited at the Hospital entrance they were approached by lots of people who all asked if it was ok if Dembe got some attention. Jay said it was so nice as he could watch people who were obviously really worried or stressed out, clock Dembe and then start smiling. It is so lovely that our boy brings that out of people. Hospital can be a very shitty place for some people so if he made some people smile then that’s brilliant.

When I came out of the doors Dembe clocked me immediately but Jay didn’t. Some poor lady was asking Jay if she could give Dembe a cuddle but I knew she wasn’t going to get a look in now that I had arrived.

We popped over to see Lo and pick up Jays ring that she had mended and made a size smaller. Dembe was really well behaved again. On the way back we went to the petrol station to get some fuel. The lady behind the counter saw that Jay had a dog lead around his neck and gave him two dog biscuits to give Dembe. That was so lovely of her.

After Dembe’s afternoon walk we popped into Pets at Home and Dembe was rather enamoured with a cuddly toy sprout. So that came home with us.

He was obsessed with it and hasn’t left it alone all week.

Tonight was also our first night back at dog training, level 3 obedience. IT was just Dembe and another dog this evening. There will only be three of us on the course which is nice. The training session went really well even when there were crazy loud fireworks going off that made it sound like the barn was in the middle of a war zone. Dembe coped brilliantly with the fireworks going off.

Dembe was so tired he fell asleep in the car on the way home.

Wednesday 6th November

Jay got Dembe out for a nice long walk early this morning. Then before we set off down to see my parents ( and Jay to see his) he took Dembe for a walk around the block. It is a 60 minute drive so we didn’t want Dembe getting fractious because he wanted a wee half way through the journey.

Dembe was much better in the car today. Tuesday and Monday he had cried for the majority of the journey. Dembe settled as soon as we hit the motorway, he slept for the majority of the journey.

He was very excited when we got to my parents house, so we kept him on a lead to begin with . When he started to calm down we then just kept his car harness on him so we had an element of control. Then when he calmed down further I removed the harness. His mate Maggie was there so he wanted to play. However Dembe was struggling with my parents wood flooring, he was sliding all over the place so I had to ensure that he didn’t go running around after Maggie so that he didn’t injure himself. I had picked him up a Yak chew at Pets at Home yesterday so that kept him entertained when Maggie hadn’t stolen it.

He never settled down completely at my parents possibly because Jay had gone to see his parents. But he did calm down enough to lie across my lap. When Jay got back from his parents he gave Dembe a walk around the block so he could relieve himself before the journey home. Jay had to find some grass for him though as Dembe really doesn’t like going on tarmac.

He slept all the way home in the car, that is his antler chew in a rather suggestive position.

Thursday 7th November

Dembe went out with his daddy at 7am and had a good explore over at the model airfield. At least they managed to avoid the rain this morning.

We decided that today we would do some training going around a shop again so we paid a visit to The Range at around 11am. Before we left the house Jay walked Dembe around the block so that he had a wee and didn’t play up when he was working. It was the first time in ages we have been out to a shop. The last time was when we went to see our friend at Honiton. He was very well behaved. He walked beautifully and Jay kept him on task. It was good being able to hear Jay instruct Debe and talk him through what he was doing. I like hearing him praise Dembe. They work together brilliantly as a team.

It was a very different kind of shop for Dembe to work in, narrow aisles, lots of people. Lots of stands at the end of aisles etc. Not much room to manoeuvre my scooter and certainly no room for Dembe to misbehave in. He did us proud, he walked like an angel.

Dembe was shattered when he came back and I think it was combined tiredness from all of this week as it has been busy

Jay took him out for a walk at 3pm and he got lots of cuddles and adoration from a group of walkers today .

Friday 8th November

We were all shattered today after having such a busy week this week. It may not seem a lot to many of you but when you have a chronic health condition , lots of outings in a short space of time, with no real down time to recover after is draining. So we had a quiet day today.

I had to do some repairs today to crocodile

He had been injured during an enthusiastic game of tug of war. Thankfully it wasn’t much more than a 5 minute job. My work was closely observed by Dembe.

Dembe just wanted cuddles all day

It didn’t change when I went to bed and was watching the TV in bed. Dembe slept with his head on my stomach

Saturday 9th November

This morning Jay decided to take Dembe down the beach, it was quite early and the sun was just rising.

Dembe had his very first go in the sea today

Jay videoed it for me as I was still in bed when they left for their walk.

In the evening we had friends over for our very first Strictly Come dancing evening! Dembe loved having all the attention and brought out sprout, crocodile and carrot to show everyone.

Sunday 10th November

Jay took Dembe to the beach again this morning and he had a proper swim and a play with a grown up yellow Labrador called Roxy.

At 12.30 we had our very first Agility Training for Fun session run by the same team that do the Obedience training – Happy Dogs who I can’t recommend highly enough. Dembe was squealing in the car after his quick run around on the common when he worked out that he was going to the training centre.

At first everyone just got used to all the training equipment out in the room and the new dogs . Then they started on very little jumps. Which Dembe aced and really enjoyed.

Then after doing a few circuits of this Dembe got to go in the tunnel

Dembe absolutely loved the class.

When he came home he was shattered. The only time he has moved is to change sofas

W/C 28th October 2019

Monday 28th October

For the 1st time in ages Jay was on an early today. Dembe was quite tired this morning after his jaunt to Haldon Forest yesterday. He slept away the morning on my bed. Only waking up around 10 minutes before Jay got back home for lunch.

He was equally as tired in the afternoon, sleeping on my lap but sprung back to life when Sam and Sarah popped in for a visit. Dembe was very gentle with Sam but he was incredibly over excited . I had to practice calm giving to take his energy levels down a notch . With Jay being early he hadn’t had a walk and was now more than ready for one. He is still limited to an hour a day of walking.

Dembe had destroyed the squeak in his bear toy, so I took it out of the toy and showed him. This freaked him out as you can see from the video above.

He kept bringing his tennis ball over to Sam to be thrown for him. He also got his carrot out and his crocodile. Both were being thrown around the lounge which made me and Sarah laugh.

He was shattered after seeing Sarah and Sam and fell asleep at my feet!

Dembe has started a bad habit this week of just randomly barking. It is really annoying. He is also barking at fireworks. He seems a little unsettled so we will be trying to work out what is going on.

Tuesday 29th October

Jay is day off today so Dembe has had a nice long walk this morning. It still seems really strange that we won’t be going to dog training this evening as our course has finished.

At midday we popped over to see our friend Lo at her work place. She is a really lovely lady and I have written about her before, she stopped traffic one time when she stopped her car on the main road so she could have a look at Dembe when he was a tiny pup. She hadn’t seen him since then other than on my facebook and instagram feed so it was lovely to see her. She is always so funny and easy to chat to. Dembe was good apart from a couple of barks.

After we saw Lo, Jay decided to take Dembe out for a walk. The weather has been rough today high winds and quite cold, there was rain forecast for later, so to avoid being drowned rats he took him out. Dembe wasn’t enjoying the high wind at all and was only too happy to get back to the car.

We had a very quiet rest of the day, my health hasn’t been great. I seem to be stuck in a cycle of migraines and vertigo currently.

Wednesday 30th October

Dembe is very cuddly today and on several occasions has tried to crawl onto my lap whilst I was sat at the embroidery machine. I took advantage of long stitch outs and used them to go and play / cuddle Dembe. He wanted lots of attention and I was more than happy to give it.

I gave him the cardboard tube from one of my embroidery stabilisers to destroy whilst I finished up. He enjoyed that.

Dembe hates it when Jay doesn’t finish at 5pm it really throws him out. Between 5pm & 6pm he cried continually. I put his new coat on him so he was ready for his walk when Jay got in. I also got one of the Weims old collar lights out as now the clocks have changed it is pitch black most of the time when Jay finishes work and takes Dembe up. The weather is absolutely awful this evening, windy and exceptionally heavy rain.

The weather was so bad that Dembe had a poo and wee, then turned tail and ran back to the car. Jay had to run along behind him with the torch bouncing all over the place.

The coat worked brilliantly and reduced how muddy he was.

Dembe sat on my lap earlier.

Thursday 31st October

I had to let Dembe out for a wee at 4.30am. He refused to go outside before bedtime due to the weather. He woke me up by nibbling my fingers. He had obviously tried everything else but it hadn’t worked. He did stay asleep until gone 6.25am which was a bloody miracle and the longest he has slept to since the clocks changed.

I keep forgetting to say that he has developed a taste for manuka honey. I use manuka honey on my face last thing at night to get rid of the scarring and spots that have appeared since hitting the menopause. Up until a few days ago he hadn’t taken any notice of this gunk on my face at bed time. Now he pins me down and licks my face clean! It makes me laugh so much as he really goes mental ensuring he has got every little bit off.

As Jay was on a late night he took him for a long walk so he was adequately worn out for the day.

They managed to avoid the worst of the weather thankfully and Dembe kept nice and dry. Someone asked me how we kept his coat so clean as their Labrador rolls in the mud and dives in puddles. I think our Labrador is either broken or is just biding his time as he just doesn’t do this. We have been waiting for it and expecting it.

He has started crying when Jay leaves the house, even when he knows he is going to work. Silly bugger. I have to spend a while giving him a cuddle so that he stops. Not that he is spoilt.

As my parents were popping in to see me today I got dads card out and put it on the coffee table. I left the room for 30 seconds and came back in to find Dembe sat chewing the card and ripping the envelope open. He has a bit of an obsession with paper and cardboard. He never steals whole magazines it is always just a single piece of paper like a post it note or a card. To be fair this is the only thing he has destroyed so I know we have got off lightly.

Dembe always struggles when my parents arrive as he wants to play with Maggie, my parents dog and she never wants to play when in the house. So he gets very frustrated. I ended up putting him on his lead so he left her alone and I could attempt to control the barking. He was shattered when they left.

He loves lying on my lap and when it is just me and him or me, him and Jay he will spend ages either having a cuddle on my lap or asleep on it. He also does some really weird sleeping positions.

His back end is on the sofa and my lap, his front is draped over the footstool. He stayed like this for ages… nutter.

I managed to keep him relatively quiet all evening with the Trick or Treaters. We put a poster on the door asking them not to call as I don’t have the energy to be getting up and down to the door all night. I have lost count of how many times Jay has been late night on Halloween.

Friday 1st November

It’s my birthday!

Jay is on an early shift today so he took Dembe out for an early walk. When he got back from his walk Dembe was really surprised to see me downstairs. Jay is working the next few days and out Saturday night so I am barely going to see him. So I dragged myself from my pit. Dembe’s tail was going so fast I thought it would fall off.

We went back to bed at 5.30am as Jay was getting ready to go to work. We managed to get back to sleep and stay there until 7.30am which was lovely!

Dembe and I had some nice cuddles whilst I came around. It can take me several hours first thing in the morning to get to a place where I can move around safely. Dembe seems to know this he will sleep on my lap until 9-9.30am. He is a very special boy.

Jay popped back for lunch and Dembe was thrilled to see him. I swear if Jay left the house for 5 minutes he would get the same greeting from Dembe as if he hadn’t seen him in 24 hours!

In the afternoon my friend Heather popped over to see me. Dembe always enjoys seeing Heather and was climbing all over her and demanding toys get thrown for him.

Earlier in the day all 3 of us got a shout out from our favourite TV channel Sewing Quarter

My boys bought me a wool pressing mat and a book on crochet as I would like to teach myself how to crochet over the next 12 months.

Saturday 2nd November

Jamie’s birthday today….yes our birthdays are on consecutive days. He is younger thn me by a matter of hours.

I dragged myself out of bed as due to Jays boss leaving the company today they were having a meal this evening to celebrate his retirement. He was also working today so we were barely going to see each other. Dembe was very pleased to have us all together.

Like we did yesterday Dembe and I went back to bed. There was a storm raging outside, the wind was crazy and this unsettled Dembe a little. So he barked a few times. I reassured him all was ok and we managed to get back to sleep. We slept until around 7am which was good. I was fully expecting the garden fences to be trashed but they were still standing…for now

This afternoon I decided to try my hand at Crochet for the first time. Dembe decided he was part cat and had to be dissuaded from stealing the ball of wool and running away with it.

Jay took Dembe out for a walk and then when we got home he went and got ready. Leaving the house in less than an hour after being home. So it was just me and my baby. We had a cuddle and then went up to bed early. Dembe was brilliant and settled immediately.

Sunday 3rd November

It’s a quiet day today here as Jay has a hangover, I had an awful nights sleep so look like I have a hangover despite only having 2 drinks last night. Dembe is just very happy that we are all together. It’s the first day since Tuesday that we have spent more than just a few hours together.

Jay is on holiday this coming week so we are hoping to get out and about a little. Plus Dembe’s training starts back on Tuesday evening and then his agility training starts on Sunday next week.

W/C 21st October 2019

Monday 21st October

Weird day today as Jay was on stock take, so he was up at 2.30am to be in work by 4am. Due to this Dembe didn’t get a walk until Jay got home from work until Jay got home just after 1pm. Dembe was very good, he did get up with Jay but went to sleep on the sofa by the window. He has got used to me getting up with insomnia, so he knows to be quiet and just go to sleep. When Jay left for work Dembe came back up to bed with me and we then didn’t wake up until gone 7.30am which was amazing!

The morning whizzed by and before we knew it Jay was back from work. We took Dembe straight out, which was just as well as he was bouncing off the walls by then. Dembe had a play with several dogs up on the common which meant he burnt off more energy than normal.

We spent the rest of the afternoon relaxing with Jay fighting the urge to go to sleep. He was feeling really cold because he was so tired and Dembe kept stealing his dressing gown belt.

Tuesday 22nd October

Jay was off today , so he and Dembe went for a nice walk up the common first thing. Dembe is eating so much better now that he has his new bowl, he comes back from his walks starving hungry and demanding to be fed. At 3.45pm each day he comes and finds me to let me know he wants his dinner. It makes me laugh as before we had to wake him up for his meals as he really wasn’t that bothered.

Dembe was shattered after his long walk this morning so he crashed on the sofa beside me whilst we caught up on the previous evenings The Walking Dead.

I managed to get some sewing done in the afternoon . Dembe wasn’t too happy about this despite the fact his daddy was home. So he went out into the garden with his carrot and lay down staring at me!

We went out for Dembe’s afternoon walk at around 3pm. As my parents were at the caravan we dropped in to them on the way back. Maggie wasn’t up for playing she wanted to eat the dog treats I had brought with me. Dembe had a great time though as there was practically no one on that part of the site he played fetch with my dad and Jamie. He loves running after the ball.

He was worn out after playing at the caravan park and went to sleep on the 10 minute drive home.

Wednesday 23rd October

Dembe was shattered all day after all the fun at the caravan. He was very cuddly in the morning when I first came downstairs and lay across my lap refusing to move and let me get up.

Dembe was a bit barky today after it being quiet here for weeks during the gay time the kids are now on half term and he can hear them out in the street. So every so often he is barking when they get too loud for him.

We changed the net curtain today in the lounge so immediately Dembe had to check it out!

He was back at the window doing his duty for neighbourhood watch.

Dembe was so excited today when his daddy came home for lunch . He jumped on Jay and smothered him with kisses. He then brought him his carrot (toy), he always likes to bring Jay a toy when he comes home at lunch time! When Jay went back to work Dembe watched from the window.

Dembe put himself to bed in the afternoon whilst I did a bit of sewing. He reminds me so much of our first dog Travis who would go to bed when Jay and I were at work. As we went out the front door Travis would be climbing the stairs!

As it was raining this evening Dembe worse his new waxed jacket for the first time. He looks lovely in it and it kept him nice and dry.

Thursday 24th October

Dembe allowed me to have a lie on this morning and didn’t wake up until 7am. After I got up he went into Jays room and woke him up by dropping his antler chew on Jay’s head. So Dembe was really popular for a while!

Jay took him out for a huge walk as he was late night. When they got back Dembe ignored me and went straight into the kitchen demanding his breakfast, what a difference from a few weeks ago where we had to practically beg him to eat at every meal.

We had a really quiet day Thursday with lots of cuddles.

Friday 25th October

Dembe spent quite a bit of today lying on my lap. That seems to be his favourite thing to do when it is just the two of us.

I had to get some sewing done so Dembe took himself upstairs as soon as he worked out I was getting ready to start. He stayed up there until Jay got home for lunch. He was really dopey and cuddly still when Jay got through the door.

Dembe went back up to bed after Jay went back to work as I just wanted to finish off the project I had been working on. He wandered back into the kitchen at 3.30pm which meant he knew it was nearly time for his dinner. As it was Friday it was Mackerel day, as I was getting his dinner ready he was spinning around in circles with excitement.

After his dinner we sat on the sofa and had cuddles until Jay got home.

The weather was really horrible we have had a yellow weather warning for wind and rain today. It hasn’t stopped. So Dembe had his coat on again today for his walk.

Saturday 26th October

We had a lazy day today me and Dembe. Jay was on an early, so Dembe came back to bed and we didn’t get up until 6.40am. Of course tomorrow will mark Dembe’s first proper clock change – fall back. We are expecting him to wake us up at silly o’clock. I think he is going to be early!

My friend Angie came over in the afternoon. Considering Dembe hadn’t had a walk this morning he didn’t go as mental as he can sometimes although he wanted Angie to throw his ball for him continually.

I found out today that Dembe is terrified of a dowel rod. I think earlier in the week it was in my room and he knocked it, so he is now convinced it moves on its own. Yesterday I used the dowel to hang an item from to see how it would look. Earlier today I put it on the stairs to remind me to take it back up with me. An hour or so later Dembe was barking the place down. He was barking at the dowel rod. I took it upstairs and put it just inside my bedroom door. A few hours later he was barking upstairs. I checked on him and he was barking at the dowel. When I picked it up he couldn’t get away from it quickly enough he was absolutely terrified of it. He literally ran across the room. So I have now placed it on top of my wardrobe out of sight. I have never seen him so scared of anything in my life silly bugger.

I was trying to get some decent photographs of Dembe and Jay as they came back to the car after their walk, I failed!

We had some very loud fireworks here this evening. Dembe barked at them. We managed to get him to settle down. He doesn’t seem to be as frightened of them as the Weimaraners were. So fingers crossed that continues.

Sunday 27th October

Dembe didn’t get the memo about the clocks changing this morning, he had us all up at 5.30am!

He had his breakfast and then Jay took him out for a walk. He then came home, lay across my lap and slept like this for 30-40 minutes. The whole time Jay and I were trying to find some match sticks for our eyes as we were just so bloody tired!

On the spur of the moment we decided that we would go and explore Haldon Forestry park as I had seen on a disability website that it had good access for scooters and wheelchairs. We decided this at 8.30am and we were at Haldon for 9.20am. Dembe absolutely adored it and was going crazy with all the sights and new smells.

All Dembe has done is sleep ever since we got back. He slept all the way home too!

W/C 14th October 2019

Monday 14th October

I got woken up at 6.30am by having Dembe drop his new yellow tyre toy on my head. Not the best way to come around on a Monday morning. He is utterly obsessed with his new tyre toy and is taking it with him everywhere. I always get woken up by being brought a toy but usually he is carrying it in his mouth and its a soft toy like carrot so it doesn’t hurt if it is dropped on you!

Dembe destroyed a toy today for the very first time. It was a bit of a shock as we have made it to almost 11 months old without any deliberate toy destruction. It is a bit sad as he picked on one of the two pigs that I made Jamie last year. He started last week by chewing both piggies tails off. I thought it would stop there but he continued I looked up only to see him surrounded by a sea of white stuffing. Oh well. Piggie got put in the bin.

Today has been a tough day for emotionally, some decisions needed to be made and although they are ultimately for the good of my mental health and sense of worth, these are decisions that I weigh up for weeks before hand, they never come easily to me. Dembe seemed to sense my pain and crawled up onto my lap at every opportunity he could. Just lying on me letting me know that he was there for me. His ability to be in tune with me is scary sometimes. I worry about the burden that is placed on him but he seems to love his role as my protector. It is a shame humans aren’t more like dogs, at least they are honest with their feelings / likes and dislikes. They have pure motives and emotions.

Tuesday 15th October

Jay was day off today.

We took Dembe to the vets again to be weighed. Jay and I were so sure after his week of being on a diet he was looking better – it wasn’t a little diet this was quite extreme, cutting out 90% of his treats and cutting his food portion down. We felt that he was showing more signs of a waist and his ribs were becoming easier to feel.

He had put on 200g, I won’t lie I was devastated. We were working so hard to get this under control I couldn’t for the life of me work out how the F**k he had gained weight. Even Jay had lost more weight than usual this week as he had been doing so much more walking with Dembe. For him to gain made me worry that there was a medical reason behind his weight gain.

The vet nurse was very nice but it still felt like I was being lectured and that I was a shit dog owner. I don’t think the staff even think about what a contentious issue weight maybe for the owner. I have been bullied all my life over my weight, its the go to thing people use to upset me and always has been. Even though as a kid I was tall for my age and was no way overweight. So hearing them discuss Dembe’s weight like he was morbidly obese really punched my buttons. He did get them back though by pissing all over the floor and in the waiting room. Unfortunately that added to my feelings of inadequacy as we should have chucked him out in the garden before we went as he hasn’t pee’d inside for about 6-7 months, He must have been desperate to do that. Although to be fair it was his Auntie Mollie’s favourite thing to do, piss in the vets waiting room.

I also object to this being made such a humungous issue when 800g ago it wasn’t a problem. It’s not like he needs to lose 10 kg, he could probably do with losing 2-3kg. But they were quite happy with his weight at 32kg but 800g over… I was told that if I gave him any treats I was to take that out of his food allowance for the day. The problem is that Arden Grange don’t tell you what his foods calorie content is, so if he has one small frozen carrot I have no idea how much of his food should be removed from his total for the day. They had a poster in the consulting room stating that 100g of carrots is 30 calories. Yet if I fed Dembe 100g of carrots (4oz) he would be shitting through the eye of a needle. God knows what would happen if you gave that amount to a yorkshire terrier. These things are relative. Dembe has one small carrot not a sackful and I won’t feel guilty about giving him a carrot when he would normally have a denta stix.

So the vet visit upset me all day when normally we enjoy our visits down there. So I wont be going again for a while. Jay will weigh Dembe by picking him up and weighing on our home scales. He doesn’t need to go down for at least a month as we will need to check his weight for his worming tablets.

The day ended much better at dog training. We let Martin know that changing Dembe from a metal bowl to a ceramic bowl had solved 90% of his eating issues. Adding in the small portion of adult Arden Grange food had tipped it over to 100% successful along with also changing his meals to breakfast 65% of his daily amount and dinner 35%. He had a good look at Dembe and said what a difference in a week and that his waist was coming back, he was getting the tuck of his tummy back and more definition on his flanks. He couldn’t quite believe the poster about the carrots. Most people when putting their dogs on a diet would give carrots as a treat, to single them out as if they are a bad food seems a little strange, in my opinion.

We discussed the 200g weight gain and Martin said ignore it, Dembe could have been a bit bloated. He said to just keep doing what we are doing as it is obviously working by looking at Dembe. Dembe is already starting to look leaner.

At the end of the session, our last one for this course, Martin let all the dogs try going through the tunnel which is part of the agility training course. Dembe was terrified the first time he got led up to the tunnel and bolted back to me. However with me at the other end of the tunnel with Jay he couldn’t wait to try it out and his third go was even more successful he was so proud of himself. All the dogs that had a go loved it.

We have signed him up for a short agility training course on a Sunday from 10th November and we will be attending the new obedience training course when that starts on the 12th.

Wednesday 16th October

Can you believe it little Dembe Morris is 11 months old today. That has just flown by. Today Dembe surprised his dad when they were up the common by being brave and going for his very first swim

I am afraid it is a poor quality photo as Jay thought he had videoed it for me but alas he hadn’t. There was around a second of usable material so I managed to take this screenshot.

Up until today Dembe has never swum, when he was little and we took him to the beach he would run away from the tide coming in. But he has always loved the hosepipe and the shower, along with his paddling pool in the summer. Today with a little coaxing he had a swim, Jay said he was really good swimming in the proper position rather than trying to sit up in the water he was flat. I am gutted I wasn’t there and there isn’t any video.

Jay was on late night today so when Dembe was taken out it was for a nice long walk and well swim. We had to hose him off in the garden when he got back as he was covered in sand and mud. He is so good though and allows us to clean him off.

He was pretty shattered after his adventure this morning.

As it was dry this evening I threw the ball in the garden for him to use up some of his energy before I went to bed. Dembe decided to stay downstairs and wait for his dad.

Thursday 16th October

Dembe has been an incredibly cuddly and affectionate dog this week. He knows that I am feeling battered and bruised. He gets on my lap several times a day and just lies there until he either goes to sleep or he decides to go and get a toy.

Friday 18th October

I was waiting for ages for Dembe to settle down this morning so that I could crack on with what I wanted to do. He wanted to play, to be cuddled and then all of a sudden he ran over to his toy box picked up his carrot and gave it to me. Once I had his carrot he ran upstairs and went to sleep on my bed. He does this most mornings if I am on my sewing machine or embroidery machine. I would normally feel guilty that he has taken himself off to bed. No more though if he is going to go up there anyway even when I am not on my machines. It made me laugh that he gave me carrot to look after whilst he slept!

Again this afternoon all he wanted to do was lie on my lap. I was quite grateful that he was looking after me as I had such a terrible headache in the afternoon. It took me a while to work it out but I was having a low CSF headache. I suffered a spontaneous leak in 2016 and know the signs. My headache only went when I lay down for an hour, the minute I stood up it came back. Maybe that is what Dembe could sense yesterday and that is why he was stuck to me like glue?

Saturday 19th October

We had another cuddly day today. Jay was late so Dembe got taken on a long walk this morning so that he would be ok with only going out once today. Jay took him to the place where he had a swim on Wednesday and he had another swim.

I was so pleased to see it as this was the first time I have seen our boy swim and he took to it like a duck to water pardon the pun. He had Dembe in and out a few times .

Dembe having a swim

A friend popped over in the afternoon, we haven’t seen her in a while and she couldn’t get over how big he has got. I had to do two emergency surgeries on Dembe’s crocodile toys whilst she was here as there was a danger of him pulling out the stuffing. Both had seams rip due to playing. So I tend to do repairs as I see they need done rather than leave them.

We had a quiet rest of the day cuddling and playing.

Sunday 20th October

Dembe’s new food bowl arrived ysterday but his breakfast after his walk this morning was his first time having a meal out of it. Up until now we have been using a pasta bowl. I am so pleased that he seems to love his new bowl as much as we do.

He was so pleased after he had his meal we were laughing our heads off at his crazy waggy bum!

We have all had a lazy day as Jay is in work at 4am tomorrow which means he will be getting up at 2.30am. So we have kept everything very chilled out. Dembe just loves having his mum and dad at home with him. Although I don’t get my usual amount of cuddles with him.

W/C 7th October 2019

Monday 7th October

Well today was a write off I had a hemiplegic migraine something I haven’t had in a few years and ended up being in bed pretty much all day. Dembe was an absolute hero and stayed with me. He wouldn’t even let me go to the bathroom without being stuck to my side.

Due to having the migraine there are no photos and nothing in his diary. He was just my darling boy, sleeping with his face pressed against the left side of my face.

To make up for it here is his video that I shot on Sunday night of him doing his sock trick.

Tuesday 8th October

We decided that today we would take Dembe to the vets and get him weighed and then go on into town and have a walk around ( well for me a scoot around).

The vets was upsetting as he had put on 600g which meant he has to lose weight. He was 32kg last month and although his weight gain has massively decreased – at one point he was putting on 2kg a month, now his weight should be settling. I was a little annoyed as last month at 32kg there was no mention that he needed to lose weight but a different veterinary nurse and now all of a sudden it is a different story. He still has a waist but it isn’t nipped in enough. He is already on a much smaller amount of food than he should be but I know in my heart he gets too many treats so those will all be cut down too. At least it was only 600g and not 2kg, I would have died of embarrassment.

After the vets we went for a mooch around the town centre, we went all around the indoor market, he was a bit naughty as he jumped up at the counter in the market to see what everyone was doing. I managed to pick him up an American Football Kong as both of his current ones had broken so had been thrown away. As we were going around the market a tiny wee toddler walked up to him and gave hims a stroke. She was so cute, she said to him “hello little doggie” Dembe gave her a sniff whilst his tail went bonkers. His head was the same height as hers so it made me laugh when she called him a little doggy. He was so curious about her.

After the indoor market we walked all the way through the town to give Dembe some exposure to traffic noise, crowds, wheelchairs, pushchairs and any other item he may not have come into contact with before. He coped really well and did himself proud. He was pretty exhausted by the time we came home, as we had been out for an hour. All he did was sleep pretty much for the rest of the day.

We had dog training this evening, Dembe was having a bad day at the office. He was knackered I think from earlier and was just finding it too difficult to concentrate on Jay. He kept getting distracted by Suki the giant Schnauzer. Suki was struggling too which is a real a shame as there were only the two of them in class this evening and they could have got so much more out of it. I have to remember though that out of 11 weeks training he has had two bad nights and tonight was still nothing compared to the nightmare of his very first training class where Jay and I wanted the ground to open up and swallow us.

We had a really long chat with Martin the trainer before class as we have been having awful problems with Dembe refusing to eat his food. He doesn’t have any medical issues as he chews his bones and chew toys, he eats everything else but his food. Martin said it was weird as another one of his clients had contacted him this week to say they were having the same problem with their dog and he is on exactly the same food as Dembe.

So we came away with a plan, firstly to change his food bowl from stainless steel to pottery. Then to add in some adult food of a different flavour to see if it is the food that is the issue, as possibly it is one batch that just doesn’t taste the same as it did previously. To aid his weight loss we need to reduce his food by 30g a day and split his meals so he has a smaller evening meal than breakfast. Still give him treats for training but to make them smaller and to work for longer before he gets one. Martin had a good look at him and said to us not to panic, Dembe only needed to lose a few pounds, needed more of a nipped in waist and feel his ribs a bit more. He wants us to weigh him next Tuesday and let him know if he has lost weight / stayed the same or gained. I felt much happier after speaking to Martin. He also said Dembe shouldn’t be put on adult food as a way to get him to lose weight as he still needs the puppy food mix of protein and crabs, just cut the meal size down. So fingers crossed next week he has lost some weight.

He loves dog training so much he cries all the way there with excitement. We really need to do some more lead training with him it is just a bit of a nightmare getting Jay to do lead walks as he prefers going up the common.

Wednesday 9th October

Dembe was cream crackered today, he spent a lot of the day fast asleep.

At one point during the day I went upstairs and found him asleep on my bed like this. It took me ages to get him to wake up so we had lots of cuddles.

This morning when I gave him his breakfast I switched his bowl to one of our pasta bowls. Martin had suggested that perhaps his bowl was giving his food a metallic taste. I gave him 65% of his food for the day for breakfast. He did eat better out of the pasta bowl. He needed a bit of encouragement but he did eat it a lot better than he normally would. I wormed him after breakfast as he was due, today he decided instead of like all the other times he has been wormed that he wouldn’t eat the tablet out of my hand. I wrapped it in ham and gave it to him. He ran off upstairs and hid beside my bed. I made my way upstairs to see what he was doing. He had taken the ham off the worming tablet and was now eating the tablet by itself. Bloody satan that dog!

He had 35% of his total daily food in the evening and I have moved his evening meal to 4pm so he has longer between eating and bed time so he burns more calories off rather than it bulking him out. This was another of Martins suggestions. He ate his dinner much better again and I didn’t have to hand feed him at all to get him to eat. Tomorrow his adult arden grange is arriving. I got Salmon flavour as Dembe loves fish. The Weims all loved this flavour too so I am hoping he likes it as much.

Thursday 10th October

We woke up at 6.30 and came downstairs. I had to stand in the back garden to get Dembe to come outside and go for a wee. He will hold on for stupid amounts of time if you don’t go outside with him and say the magic words Busy Busy!

He is full of beans today after barely being conscious for most of yesterday. As Jay is on a late night he took Dembe out for an hour’s walk for the first time.

It was a walk Jay used to do with the Weimaraners many years ago and hadn’t done it for quite some time. Dembe loved it although he was getting very tired by the end of the walk. He came home had some breakfast and went to sleep for a bit. Just as well because before the walk he was throwing his carrot around the lounge to demand his daily exercise.

Dembes new food arrived this morning too late for his breakfast but in more than enough time for his dinner. I knew his interest was piqued as he was sniffing the bag like mad. I took a video to show Jay how his new food had gone down . He is only having a 3rd of his food as the Adult food as he is still a puppy and this is to see if the taste of the puppy food was the issue.

As you can see it went down very well. He even went back and licked the bowl.

Jay’s shift time got changed before he went into work so he went in earlier and was finishing at 7pm. After Dembe’s dinner and before Jay got home he went absolutely crazy. You would have thought he hadn’t been out for a walk all day.

He did get taken out for a very quick walk in the evening as he has got to a stage where he would rather poo on a walk than in the garden, which none of our boy dogs have done before.

Friday 11th October

Jay was late night tonight so Dembe got taken out for a long walk but not as long as yesterday as it would have been too much for him two days on the bounce.

Since my migraine on Monday I have had awful after headaches and today was one of those days. So although I did a couple of hours sewing, I spent the rest of the day cuddling my baby on the sofa.

I just love his expressive eyebrow in this photo.

I went outside with him to get some photos as I suddenly realised in the afternoon I hadn’t taken his photo. He wasn’t going to play ball, I asked him to sit so he laid down.

Tonight with his dinner he had his first taste of tinned Mackerel and went crazy for it. He hoovered his food down with zero cheerleading from me. Each meal time is getting better and better.

Saturday 12th October

Today is flu jab day for me so Dembe is all confused as to why I am up and dressed so early. He was very excited when Jay came back from work to take me to the doctors surgery to get my jab. They waited in the car whilst I was in and out in 5 minutes. Poor Dembe when Jay dropped me home he thought his dad would be back again soon and refused to leave the sofa by the front door. He lay so he could see through the frosted glass panels when Jay would reverse up the drive. After an hour he gave up and went to sleep on the sofa.

I forgot to say when we came in from the car Dembe was acting like I had left him for hours. It was a struggle getting my coat and boots off as all he wanted to do was sit on my lap and give me lots of kisses the silly devil. He is funny you never know how he will be.

We have had a lazy day after the rush to get out for the flu jab. He has been ridiculously cuddly.

He had his dinner this evening without me being in the room and he didn’t walk away from it. This hasn’t happened for months. I really hope that we have got on top of the meal eating issues. Who would have thought a change in bowls and some food of a different flavour would be enough to get him eating properly.

He knows that Jay will be coming home soon so he is pulling every toy out of his toy box and chucking it around the lounge.

Sunday 13th October

We had a lazy day today after seeing family in the morning. Dembe wore himself out following people around the house and desperately trying to get Maggie’s attention. As soon as everyone left he settled down and went to sleep.

w/c 30th September 2019

Monday 30th September

We had an extremely quiet day on Monday as I badly scalded myself with steam form the kettle. The day was spent on the sofa with my hand in a bowl of cold water. Dembe was obsessed with the bowl of water and spent the day drinking from it at every opportunity despite having his own water freely available. Obviously my hand in it makes it taste better!

I had to finish the blog post early last week as I knew I would be in no fit state to finish it on Sunday afternoon when I got back from the create and craft show. It was a shame as there was a cracker of an incident on Saturday afternoon so I shall share it here.

A long one so stick with it

I’ve always felt rather smug when I have seen fellow Labrador owners refer to their dogs as Twatadors. I always felt safe in the knowledge that Dembe was super smart and not a indeed a twat.

Today at just over 10 months old he has indeed earned the title of Twatador.
Minding my own business in the lounge watching TV when I am suddenly aware of a blonde dog attempting to run into the lounge through the baby gate closely followed by a dining table chair.

Twatador formerly known as Dembe has somehow managed to get his leg caught in the cotton shopper bag that is left on the back of the chair (for me to carry stuff upstairs so I have both hands free to fall or use the banisters!) That has been there since before he even came home with us.

The sheer look of panic on his face when he thinks this is the chair is chasing him was hilarious. He managed to wedge the chair in the baby gate and run into the lounge with one foot inside the bag.

I free him from the bag. Check him over. He is fine not even the sense to be embarrassed. The stomach on legs then leaps over the chair and sits in front of the fridge begging for a sausage.

😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂

Tuesday 1st October 2019

How the hell did that happen?? How is it October?? That means Dembe will be one year old in November. It can’t be true he is still my baby.

Jay took Dembe out early, it was raining but thankfully they managed to avoid the really heavy showers.

We had a quiet day again as I am still recovering from Sunday and from scalding myself although my hand is a lot less painful today.

We took Dembe to the model airfield for his afternoon walk. He slipped over on the damp grass and managed to get the whole side of his face covered in mud. It is the first time he has got himself dirty like that so it was amusing. He hasn’t rolled, doesn’t seem to have a penchant for rolling in fox shit or eating shit. Unlike the Weimaraners so it always seems funny when he gets dirty as he is such a clean dog.

We had dog training this evening, Dembe was so excited in the car on the way there he was squeaking and crying. He really does love going to the lessons. He was going crazy this evening sniffing the floor . Apparently there had been a dog food delivery and a scent training class on before we got there. So he was lapping it up. He was also enjoying killing and eating crane flies. He and Jay worked really well together this evening. I managed to take two small videos of them working together.

working on heel work
Heel work

Dembe was shattered after class and fell asleep in the car on the way home. Once home he gave us 20 minutes and then took himself to bed as he was fed up waiting for me to get myself organised.

Wednesday 2nd October

Jay was on a 10-7 so he took Dembe out as soon as it was light enough. The mornings and evenings are getting much darker now and there is a chill in the air. Dembe was over excited when he came home and was throwing his ball around the lounge . Eventually after 40 minutes he crashed and went to sleep.

Sometimes I take a photo of Dembe and it really shocks me how grown up he looks. To me he still looks and behaves like a little puppy but I can’t deny he is looking more and more like an adult dog. Even though he still seems tiny to us.

He is eating better this week as long as we stay with him in the kitchen and act as his personal cheerleaders. I wish I knew what all the faffing about with eating was about as he snaffles junk food and treat with zero issues.

He has started taking himself up to bed on a regular basis this week, He took himself up at about 12.30pm today whilst I was doing some prep work for some Christmas projects. He was so cute all curled up asleep on Jays bed. I went in and gave him a cuddle. He ran downstairs and got his baby bear and brought it up to give me. He makes my heart melt, silly sausage.

His videos of his training have gone down very well with my friends on social media and no one can believe how well trained he is at such a young age. But then a lot of people knew the Weims were a nightmare and had very little training. They were not as willing to please compared to a Labrador.

He is shattered today after last night’s training as he didn’t get much of an opportunity to lie on the floor like he normally does.

His carrot toy is still a huge hit.

Thursday 3rd October

Jay is on a late night tonight so he has us both home with him until 11am. He really does love having the whole pack together. Jay got him out for a long walk as soon as it was light enough.

The weather was pretty grim this evening but he had plenty of energy to burn and wanted me to play ball with him out in the garden for an hour .

For the first time in ages Dembe decided to stay downstairs and wait for his dad to come home from work. Which meant I kept having to check on him because I panic when he isn’t near me and imagine all sorts of stupid things. I know this is from the Weimaraners passing away at the start of the year. I just wish I could stop myself worrying about him constantly.

As soon as Jay gets home, Dembe will come up to bed. It is like he must protect me and keep guard downstairs some nights.

Friday 4th October

Dembe ever since he was tiny has been obsessed with lying over my lap. At least three times a day he will crawl onto my lap and demand attention like a little lap dog. I love him lying on my lap as he is always so warm. Sometimes he will just lie there and have a cuddle. Other times he will fall asleep and I will be forced to sit down and have a rest. He is very good at making me pace myself. We still have a play on my bed every time I go upstairs. I lie down on the bed and he will grab a toy and stand over my lap, then lie on my lap for cuddle. He then throws whatever toy he has got in his mouth on the floor and I have to pick it up for him. He would stay there for hours playing this game if he could. Again it is a very clever way for me to pace myself!

This was him again on my lap in the lounge this afternoon I have no clue why he likes my lap so much but I shall never complain. Even if I do get covered in dog hair.

Carrot is still a huge hit. He had to have emergency surgery this evening as there were a couple of holes where the carrot top comes through. Luckily I managed to fix it. He charges around the house with carrot in his mouth. It is enormous, almost as big as him and he loves bringing it into the bathroom whilst I am having a wee!

Saturday 5th October

Dembe wanted it to be a cuddle day today and I am guessing he knew that my back was horribly sore and wanted me to take it easy. Unfortunately I have lots of Christmas presents to make so dont have the luxury of being able to sit around and do nothing, so whilst my back allowed I cracked on.

He patiently waited in the kitchen for me to finish on my embroidery machine. He did everything he could to make me feel guilty for not spending 100% of my time with him. Lying out in the garden looking into the kitchen. He tugs at my heart strings. I wonder how he would cope if I went out to work everyday and he was left by himself. He reminds me a lot of Travis as he also used to take himself up off to bed.

As soon as I finished and sat down he was on my lap. He really does like lying across it. Even though he weighs around the same as Willow did ( well he did at his last weigh in but I think he has lost weight) he doesn’t feel as heavy as she did. My legs never go dead with him lying on me!

After a long lap cuddle he got himself comfortable as I typed up his diary from this week. He is snoring his little head off. Jay is on a shitty shift, a 10-7. I hate these as you get no morning and no evening. Even though its an hour or two later than his normal shift those 60-120 minutes can seem like a bloody lifetime as you wait for the clock to strike 7pm. The only good thing is that Dembe gets his dinner and it’s all settled before he goes out for his evening walk.

Sunday 6th October

Dembe was a crazed beast this morning. He was chucking his toys around the lounge at 6.30am demanding his walk and when he came home he was still mental. Attempting to do zoomies in the lounge and generally being an idiot. He eventually crashed at around 10.30 but at 11am my parents popped over for a visit with their dog Maggie.

Dembe normally plays chase with Maggie so can’t understand why when he is in the house he can’t play this game. He was a bit of a pain in the arse barking and getting over excited but eventually he calmed down.

As soon as they left he went to sleep on the sofa. Absolutely exhausted after a morning that can only be described as if he had taken some speed!

The rest of the day will be quiet.