Week commencing 22nd July 2019 Its HOT!

Monday 22nd July

Dembe let me sleep in until 7.20am this morning which after having me up early the last few mornings was absolute heaven.

It was incredibly hot and humid today even though we had very grey skies. Dembe slept a lot during the day due to the heat. He is however still enjoying his Yak chew it is just a shame it makes such a bloody mess everywhere.

As a treat Dembe had sardines for tea, whilst I was preparing his dinner – kibble and sardines he was spinning around in circles behind me. He has done this since he was a puppy and still get’s very excited at the thought of having his dinner. You only ever have to say to him ” do you want your dinner?” and quick as a flash he is in the kitchen, nudging the kibble storage bin with his nose, just in case you forgot where it was.

It was so hot this evening that we hosed Dembe off in the garden before going to bed. He loves the garden hose and was jumping in and out of the paddling pool having a fantastic time.

His cooling mat has been a godsend this summer helping him stay comfortable.

His latest thing is to fall asleep with his bum next to my head with his tail draped over my face. I keep being woken up with his tail tickling my nose.

We are still teaching Dembe how to pull the light switch in the bathroom, last week on three occasions he left me in the dark when he managed to turn the bathroom light off!

Of course the one time I am ready and waiting with the camera he decides it is far better to play with it than do what he is supposed to. Can’t win them all with an 8 month old puppy.

Tuesday 23rd July

I had an appointment with the nurse at 9am to have blood taken as I hadn’t had any blood tests for over a year at the surgery. We all went down the town but I went into the doctors surgery alone, as I found out that the air conditioning wasn’t working in some areas and it had been way too hot for Dembe the previous week. Quite frankly after that awful doctor last week it has knocked my confidence, even though he did nothing wrong.

Jay took Dembe for a wander around the town, it is a good socialisation exercise so he can get used to noise, people etc. Whilst walking they ran into our dog trainer, his family and their dogs. Jay was terrified Dembe would misbehave and show him up but he was as good as gold.

It was incredibly hot and stuffy today. Dembe slept a lot on the sofa next to me.

At 3pm the sky clouded over and a sea breeze picked up cooling it down rapidly. At 3.40pm we seized the opportunity to take Dembe out up the common, me accompanying them on my mobility scooter. We decided not to take the ball with us as we didn’t want Dembe to rn himself ragged and get overheated. This helped Dembe stay much cooler.

We decided to take a different path at the Model aircraft field, we have now gone on all but one of them now. We are loving exploring the common and being able to all go out together. Dembe is slowly starting to calm down when I come out with him and is reducing the amount of times he jumps on me.

I love this photo it looks like he is throwing his head back laughing x

Our friend Paul came over at 6pm, we hadn’t seen him since the party in June. Dembe was crazy even though he had only had a massive walk an hour or so ago. He loves Paul and has known him since he came home with us as a tiny pup. He has been to Pauls house a few times as well.

We have been blowing bubbles at Dembe, initially he was terrified of them but he has now got braver and chases them around the garden, trying to eat them! We showed Paul who thought that was hilarious.

Dembe was out for the count at 7.30pm. There was a massive thunderstorm over night, we all slept through it all until there was a massive clap of thunder overhead at 12.37am. It made me and Dembe jump but we both went back to sleep.

Wednesday 24th July

The blonde bastard had me up before 6.30am and I wasn’t impressed. He then woke Jay up an hour later so Jay got him out and up to Woodbury Castle by 8am. The weather forecasters say it is going to be hotter again today. Jay is on a late night so Dembe will skip his evening walk, just as well as it will be way too hot this evening.

Dembe and I spent a lot of time out in the garden today, playing with the hosepipe and his football.

Thursday 25th July

OMG it is too hot! Jay got Dembe out early due to the heat. It was already 20 degrees at 8am. We spent a lot of the morning playing in the garden.

By the afternoon it was way too hot for the both of us so we went to bed for a siesta. Dembe insisted on sleeping with his head on my shoulder, gently snoring into my ear!

He makes my heart melt, he is such an affectionate little pup.

Friday 26th July

Dembe’s new fountain for his paddling pool arrived today, this is #3 lets hope this one continues to work as he hates it when he doesn’t have a working fountain.

Again due to the heat Dembe slept all day.

This evening after Dembe’s walk we dropped by my parents caravan. He and Maggie had a wonderful time chasing each other around the site. Thankfully it was much cooler this evening so he wasn’t getting too hot. He loves going to see Maggie and cries on the drive down from the Common to the campsite. Maggie always comes running over to out car once we have parked up to greet us. Tonight I gave Maggie and Dembe a dentastix each. Maggie thought all her Christmases had come at once.

Saturday 27th July

It was a bit cooler today but I think a week of hot weather had taken its toll on Dembe, he has again slept most of the morning but that could be to do with the fact he got us up at 4am. I wasn’t impressed.

I’m pretty shattered too after he kept waking me up between 4am and 8am. I am never a happy bunny when I am woken up for no reason. It always really makes me cross when he wakes us both up and then goes to sleep the minute you are all downstairs.

Later in the day Dembe had a play in his paddling pool and with his new solar fountain.

When Jay got in from work he took Dembe out for a walk. Dembe has now twigged that if we go to the Warren for his walk it means that we will be going to see my parents and Maggie after. About 20 metres into the walk Dembe decided he had enough and wanted to go back to the car. Jay walked him for a little longer and then came back. Dembe cried in the car until we got to the campsite. He and Maggie have enormous fun and Maggie always likes the fact I have a bag full of treats. She is really into Dentastix and was growling at Dembe every time he went near her to stop him taking what she had left. He wasn’t interested in her dentastix all he wanted was his ball that was beside her!

Sunday 27th July

Dembe is in my good books this morning as he didn’t wake up until 4.30am for his breakfast – early I know but Jay has been working early shifts and he tends to feed the boy as soon as he gets up. He came straight back to bed after his breakfast and settled down. I woke up again and it was 6.45am which is a far more reasonable time to be getting up.

It was clear on rising that Dembe was full of beans this morning, so we got him out for a walk before 8am. The temperature was a pleasant 14 degrees C and there was a bit of bite in the sun already.

We met several other dog walkers, all were marvelling at the fact I had a mobility scooter on the common! When the ground is hard and dry it is very easy if not a bit bumpy. The hardest thing usually is the passing place to get past the green bar. Twice this morning I managed to get stuck on a huge pebble due to the axel on the scooter being so low.

Dembe had a wild time playing with lots of different dogs. One a very pale golden retriever played at a frenetic pace for a good five minutes or more. By the time they had finished Dembe’s tongue was hanging out to the side!

We have had a lazy day due to the heat. Dembe has been playing in his paddling pool and with his solar fountain. His new big boys dog bed arrived early this afternoon. It is huge but it will accommodate him lying on his side , stretched out like a skinned rabbit. His bed that we bought him when he was a baby ( a smaller baby than he is now) is just way too small for him. He fills the whole thing when he curls up to sleep in it. When he stretches out to lie sideways the majority of his body is on the carpet. He seemed to like it as he has already dropped a few toys in there. We have added a fleece blanket to it to make it feel more comfy.

Dembe and I have been playing ball in the garden, he really does love chasing after a ball. It must be the working lines Labrador. He also loves to carry the ball around in his mouth and squeak it constantly.

He was treated to a tin of sardines with his kibble this evening, so he was going crazy before I put his bowl down, spinning around in circles.

Week Commencing 15th July 2019

Monday 15th July

As usual for Monday Dembe and I were left to our own devices as Jay was on an early. As I caught up with The Handmaids Tale from Sunday night, Dembe amused himself.

I managed to get a bit of sewing done. Dembe tried to run off with a strip of fabric that I was working on. Joining 2 inch wide strips of fabric into one giant length. He picked up the end that was on the floor, the top of it being under the presser foot of my sewing machine. He is a right little tea leaf, I have found pin cushions ( thankfully no pins), my quilting gloves, stabiliser for embroidery and one of my bras on his chair in the garden!

We all went up to Woodbury common when Jay was home from work. I used my scooter up there, as I have mobility issues. It was the first time I have been up there on it with Dembe off the lead. I have always been nervous before that I would run him over. However he was brilliant. He kept well away from the wheels and only approached me when I was at a standstill. Every time I stopped he jumped up on my lap!

Tuesday 16th July

Dembe is 8 months old today, how quickly those months have gone by. It means we have owned him for 6 months. We can’t imagine life without him.

We took Dembe to the Doctors surgery today as I had an appointment with one of the gp’s. You can read about our experience here – https://wp.me/p4zBAs-yp. I don’t want to fill Dembe’s blog up with such a negative experience that I am still cross about. He was a good boy it is a shame the doctor wasn’t on her best behaviour.

The receptionist thought Dembe was wonderful as did the many patients who he met in the waiting room. He made an old chap’s day as he allowed him to fus him and had a long chat with Jamie about dogs. It was clear this old guy hadn’t spoken to anyone for ages and was head over heels for Dembe. We were so pleased with how he behaved that we are considering getting him registered as a PAT dog ( Pets as therapy) where he visits hospitals and hospices and just spreads some love.

We had a wonderful walk on the common this afternoon, I went up on my scooter again as this area was much flatter . We even had a chinook fly over the top of us and Dembe didn’t bat an eyelid.

Wednesday 17th July

Dembe is a very tired boy today. He has slept most of the day away.

He was only happy today as long as he was in the same room as me at all times. I tried a bit of training with him with the light pull today but he flatly refused to put it in his mouth. He was quite happy to touch it with his nose but not the mouth!

He had a nice walk with Jay on the common after work this evening.

Thursday 18th July

Due to Dembe sleeping all day yesterday he was an utter maniac today.

I was sorting through the dirty laundry seperating colours from whites / lights I looked up and out into the garden to find him outside with my bra ( second time this week) and my tropic bamboo washcloth! He does this in a blink of an eye. In the house his stolen items always end up on my bed or beside it. Usually Jays socks and pants. When he takes stuff into the garden he likes to take it to his favourite chair. I had to go and rescue them both.

As he was so crazy I did some training exercises with him, I have found he gets crazy when he needs mental stimulation and he loves doing some tasks and they calm him down. So we worked on stay training, I managed to get 2 metres away and him staying in a lying down position for 30 seconds. I didn’t push it as I know he can get frustrated easily, especially when he can’t fathom the point of it. I also managed to get him to lie down without having to point to the floor ( in the past even touch the floor to get him to do it). We did a few cycles of training over the hour and he calmed right down as he had been mentally stimulated – and had mummy’s undivided attention.

We treated Dembe to a tin of sardines tonight with his dinner. He loves Sardines but oh my they are smelly. We give him sardines in tomato sauce as he doesn’t need the extra oil or brine. His breath stinks for hours after LOL

We won £128 on the lottery last night – I found out this morning so I bought him a Trixie Poker Box 1. An brain training activity for him. I can’t wait for it to arrive.

Photo taken by Jamie
photo taken by Jamie
photo taken by Jamie

Friday 19th July

Dembe is 36 weeks today!

Jay is on a 9-6 today so Dembe got out for a walk by around 7.20am just as well because crocodile was being thrown around the lounge from before 7am.

I wasn’t expecting it but Dembe’s Poker box arrived today, so that was a lovely surprise. He was immediately inquisitive.

The light is terrible in the house today as it is pouring with rain and looks more like a November day than the height of summer. So you will have to excuse the lack of photos etc today.

Dembe worked out in a few minutes how to open the box that has a flip lid. He took a bit longer with the lid that has the red handle on. Instead of grabbing it with his mouth he nudges it with his nose. He is dead proud of himself when he gets the treat out of the bos. I think it will take a bit longer to get him to take the lid off with the string handle and pull the drawer open but I didn’t want a toy that he could master in a day as that would be a complete waste of money. He is funny though as he goes over and checks it at least once an hour just to see if any new treats have been deposited. The flip top lid is always open as he does that one so easily!

He had a lovely play on the common this evening he met a one year old Cairn terrier called Poppy. As Dembe is so used to his best mate Maggie chasing him when we visit my parents he now thinks that is the job of all small dogs and poppy was only too happy to oblige! He got back to the car exhausted.

I posted this photo on Instagram and then got instantly mummy shamed for the fact he isn’t in a crate in the boot of the car and not wearing a harness. Firstly he can’t go in the back of the car as my scooter is in there. I have problems walking, even a fold down scooter is bulky. We now own a 7 seater car so even with that boot space there. is no room. Especially if I have my fixed frame wheelchair in there. He isn’t wearing a harness currently as we haven’t been able to find one that fits him properly. They are usually too tight on his neck and too wide on the body.

However I did appreciate that the person was acting out of concern and she was right in the fact if we were involved in a crash all the force would be taken through his neck. What I didn’t appreciate was the fact she did it publicly as a shaming act. There was nothing stopping her private messaging me, that is what I took offence to. After doing some research on the internet I found a harness that doesn’t break the bank and has been crash tested unlike the majority of harnesses on the market. Having taken his measurements this one should fit him well.

I don’t agree with putting dogs in the boots of car’s unless it is strictly necessary. The boot of the car is the crush zone, it is designed to crush like a concertina, crate or no crate a dog could be killed if you were ploughed into from behind. What she couldn’t see from the photo is that we have a safety net between the front seats and the rear seats so he can’t be catapulted forward between seats, plus the seat belt attachment he has on means he can’t move to between the seats. I do take her point on his neck being at risk which is why the harness is arriving today.

So I have had my first experience of being mummy shamed! It’s been a long time coming. It’s hilarious as normally people try to shame me over my sewing machines / embroidery machines or my Emma Bridgewater pottery collection.

Saturday 20th July

Oh my word Dembe is a demon child this morning. He woke me up by crying at 05.8am as he wanted his breakfast, Jay has worked a lot of earlies this week which means he gets his breakfast at 4.30am, so now he was up and hungry. He had his breakfast but the little blonde bastard wouldn’t settle. He made it quite clear one of us needed to get up. As Jay will be working until 10pm tonight I thought it had better be me. I gave up at 6.20am. My back was killing me as well so it suited me.

Every toy was out of the box by the time Jay got up at 7.30am, by 8am it was clear Dembe needed a walk as he just wouldn’t settle. However even after his walk he was being a pain in the bum finally going to sleep at 10am

He is now tucked up beside me out for the count as I transfer from his paper diary to his blog this weeks events!

Dembe’s new chews arrived today, I got him some Yak chews after seeing them recommended on various Labrador groups on Facebook. I think he likes it, I haven’t seen him for close to an hour now as he is having a good chomp. I saw him briefly and despite all that chewing there was barely a dent on the chew. He is carrying it around constantly like it is his most prized possession .

Dembe’s new harness arrived today it is called The Slow Ton harness and is one of the few on sale in the UK that have been crash tested. It fits him really well. If anyone is interested they are available from Amazon.

Sunday 21st July

I have no clue as to what is going on with Dembe at the moment but he is insisting the whole household is up and downstairs before 7am. After having a few weeks of being “allowed” to sleep on until 7.20am this is killing me. He basically sits on the bed and cries until you get up. It doesn’t matter if you stroke him he continues to cry. He has always been a whinger and thankfully I have seen on a Facebook Labrador book that this unfortunately is quite common. Before I have always panicked that he is in pain etc so rush to him to check him over. It turns out it is just he wants attention because he has been deprived of attention for a whole two minutes!

As he was so bouncy Jay took him out before 7.30am. He gave him a nice walk on what we call old common, which is called old common by us as that is the place on the common we have known the longest. He has finally settled in his bed and is fast asleep.

He has lost his Yak chew somewhere in my room. The carpet looks like someone has really bad dandruff as it has got all the tiny flakes of Yak chew all over it. At least it doesn’t smell bad just smokey.

It got really warm this afternoon, before we took him out for a walk Dembe and I were messing about on my bed, playing with toys and having a cuddle. He still likes having a cuddle during the day whenever he can.

Every time I see this photo it makes me laugh. He looks like he has taken the selfie and I have photobombed him! The look in his eye says I’m with the crazy lady!

A tiny little video from up on the common –

Dembe in his new car safety harness

W/C 8th July 2019

Monday 8th July

It was just Dembe and I today as Jay was on an early. Dembe is being very cuddly and affectionate. He just wants to spend the day curled up beside me being stroked. I love it when he is my soppy boy. Every time I sat on the sofa today he had to be beside me, putting his head on my lap.

We did a training session in the bathroom , getting him to touch the light pull which has the baby kong on the end of it, with his nose. He has developed a bit of an aversion to the light pull since last week. Initially it looked so promising and that he would get it really quickly. Thankfully I taught him the touch command a few weeks ago – he runs between my open palms and touches each with his nose.

I also tried him with some bubbles today, you know the kind you have as a kid to blow. All Dembe did was play bow and then bark at them. He couldn’t understand what the bubbles were at all and why they kept disappearing.

Sadly his solar fountain has broken so his paddling pool is without its water feature. Thankfully it has been a straight forward return. It is very disappointing when he loved it so much.

Tuesday 9th July

We took Dembe up to Tesco again this morning . We had planned to go out for lunch at sit in the pub beer garden but it was really hot when we left the house and it was 26 when we left Tesco so far too hot and uncomfortable for Dembe even in the shade.

He was brilliant again around Tesco again. The fact that Jay can have Dembe’s lead in one hand and a basket in the other and Dembe behaves like an angel totally amazes me. We could never have done that with any of our other dogs.

I pootle along behind on my mobility scooter. Dembe has stopped attempting to jump up on my lap whenever he is alongside me. It has been a bit of a nightmare ever since he was tiny that as soon as I was next to him he would immediately try to jump up on my lap. I am so pleased that he no longer does this as I was always so worried I would run him over. He now sits very nicely to the side of me and has a cuddle.

Idiot here forgot to take any photos! **facepalm** Lots of members of staff approached us to tell us how well behaved Dembe was and they were all really good at asking us if he could be stroked, as they knew he was working.

Dembe has been following me everywhere to the point that I am falling over him at times. Frankie used to do this if my health was going to decline he was my early warning system. I think Dembe is doing the same.

I did get some lovely photos of Dembe and Jamie as they came back to the car after their walk on Tuesday afternoon.

As the training with the baby kong on the light pull isn’t going well I decided to make a dummy retrieval toy ( kind of) to attach to the light pull. I allowed Dembe to play with it for a few minutes once it was made and then attached it to the light pull. He is much happier touching this and picking it up.

Wednesday 10th July

Well I now know why Dembe was following me everywhere and wouldn’t let me be alone. I have woken up to a horrendous allergic reaction to my eye ointment that I put in over night. My eyes have all swollen and the skin on my face is burning. It is very uncomfortable. I noticed yesterday that my under eye are looked a bit swollen but as I am on salt tablets I presumed it was water retention. Thankfully with piriton and ice packs it has gone down enough for me to go to Dembe’s obedience training class tonight.

Tonight was Dembe’s last obedience training level 1 class. Jay and I got the trainer a thank you card and gift as we had all had such a brilliant time and enjoyed ourselves. The difference in all of us is enormous, Jay finally plucked up the courage tonight to answer some of the questions. I don’t think he has said more than two words previously. I have enjoyed getting out of the house every week even if both Dembe and I are shattered the following day. Dembe has come on in leaps and bounds but that is due to the hard work Jay has put in on the walks. Also the bits I have been able to manage to do in the house.

We were the only people to complete the whole 6 week course. We have signed up to do level two in September. DEmbe didn’t have a great lesson but he had been absolutely crazy all day, he had been doing zoomies at 7am. So he really isn’t in the right mindset to be fully focused.

Thursday 11th July

I was in the kitchen when I looked out into the back garden and found Dembe asleep like this. He had even knocked a pillow down so that he could rest his head on it on the table. He was absolutely shattered all day after dog training.

He has been really cuddly all week and when I wasn’t doing my bits and pieces all he wanted to do was have a cuddle.

At 17.30 he got quite upset as he had got it into his head that his dad was coming home any minute and parked himself by the front door.

He wouldn’t leave the front door until he had heard Jay on the speaker phone talking to me. Jay was on a late finish so wouldn’t be home until 9pm. Dembe was really unsettled all night even when Jay was home. Dembe went downstairs to sleep for a bit until he eventually came back upstairs ar around 11pm.

Friday 12th July

Can you believe it Dembe is 35 weeks old today. Next Tuesday he will be 8 months old. He is no longer my tiny little baby puppy. But with each day he gets cuter.

As Jay was on an early start he thought he would take Dembe out for a lead walk before he went to work. Twice he tried to get Dembe to leave the house and go for a walk and twice Dembe ran away and hid. He really isn’t an early morning mutt. He doesn’t like going out for his morning walk before 8am. He is such a funny little dog.

Dembe was hosed down in the garden at around 9am and as always he barged into the shower. Whilst I sorted myself out he decided to sleep in his dogs bed. With each passing week he seems to get bigger and the bed gets smaller.

He got it right today and was waiting at the door when his dad came home

He got taken out for a nice walk and we popped over to my parents van and he got to play with Maggie their dog. By the time we got home it was dinner ( for all of us ) and then bed.

Saturday 13th July

Dembe has been a little bugger all week attacking the potted palm out in the back garden. He does this really quietly for ages and then gives himself away when he strolls into the lounge with a huge leaf in his mouth. I got so fed up with his garden antics this morning I had to shut the back door to prevent more damage.

The door is rarely shut at the moment due to the lovely warm weather so the muppet managed to walk into the door a little bit later on. Thankfully he isn’t hurt , his pride was hurt really. For the rest of the day he was a bit hesitant on going through the door and who can blame him.

When he hasn’t been destroying my garden he has been a very cuddly bunny again. I love it when he puts his ears right back and makes his head look all domed shaped. He is so cute.

he decided this afternoon he would lie on my lap for an hour and have a cuddle.

When Jay got back from work we took Dembe out for a walk and then popped to my parents van so he could see his mate Maggie. Our friend Hilary was there with her husband and they both adore Dembe so he had lots of fuss from everyone. He was shattered by the time we got home. But he enjoyed himself.

Sunday 14th July

Dembe and I had a rotten nights sleep at 1am I was awoken by the start of a migraine. Pain in my face and down the my neck and the back of my head. I stumbled out of bed and tried to locate my soft neck collar. I have found the faster and earlier I can get this on the less potent the migraine. It is being caused by my neck coming out of alignment as I sleep and it is deeply frustrating. I got my collar on and climbed back into bed. Dembe got out of his bed on the floor and climbed up next to me. He put his paw on my arm is if to say “it’s ok mummy I am here” and we both attempted to get some sleep. It didn’t go to well as I just couldn’t get comfy. Dembe was also insisting that he escorted me to and from the bathroom. So we were both shattered come getting up time.

Its been a quiet day, Jay took Dembe up to Woodbury castle to let him burn off some energy. He had a play with a couple of dogs and enjoyed himself.

We laughed ourselves silly at Dembe dropping the subtle hint that he would like some sausages!

We have had lots of cuddles and play today.

w/c 1st July 2019

Monday 1st July 2019

Poor Dembe was sick immediately after his dinner last night, he projectile vomited it all back up. Jay dealt with it all as I was asleep in bed, I was so tired after the BBQ on Saturday.

I slept until gone 8am Monday, Dembe was with me. As soon as we got downstairs Dembe stood at the backdoor and projectile vomited his breakfast from 4 hours ago. It was just a lake of puke that was quite awkward to clear up with the majority of it being liquid and mushed kibble. He was feeling a little sorry for himself. I also found a pile of puke on the stairs was a nightmare to clear up.

Dembe slept a lot of the morning. I asked Jay to get a vets appointment as I have never seen a dog projectile vomit like that. It had freaked me out as it had reminded me of Willow just before she passed away on December 15th 2017. Plus a bit of new puppy jitters as I still feel like I am getting to know his character and the signals he will give me to tell me he is unwell. He was still searching for food, but everything I gave him he was bringing back up.

He got checked over at the vets, he managed to escape from the consulting room into reception as Jay didn’t realise he had dropped the lead! That was amusing. Dembe was given an injection to stop him being sick and the vet told us to starve him for the rest of the day. Tomorrows two meals need to be divided into 4 so that his tummy doesn’t get overloaded.

I have never felt so cruel in my life not giving him his evening meal. To be fair he was very good about it, he didn’t make a fuss or cry etc. He just accepted that he was getting any dinner and went to bed without any fuss. We are so lucky he is such a good boy.

Tuesday 2nd July

Dembe is much recovered after his sickness bug and before 8am he was chucking his crocodile around the lounge. Jay got him out early to burn off some of his crazy energy levels.

As Dembe was feeling so much better – climbing all over the window sill, see above! We decided we would take him out to do some more environmental training. We went to the beer garden of a local pub. As it was a Tuesday at 11am it wasn’t very busy but it was a lovely day. Dembe encountered children, delivery people and the pub staff. He got a massive cuddle from a delivery driver, which Dembe loved. It was a good first experience . He did have a couple of barks but not massive and stopped after two or three so wasn’t causing a nuisance. We have to work on ignoring him when he starts with the barking.

His new collar arrived from Dogs & Horses today, French navy with Brass hardware. It is a bit too big for him but no doubt he will soon fit it perfectly. His last collar ripped, for which I thank my lucky stars as it saved his life. Dembe was in the back of the car clipped into his seat belt, Jay left the car door open and turned to get something, Dembe decided to jump out of the car. He could have broken his neck or hung himself. A mistake that will never happen again. He had never attempted to get out of the car before and he still insists on being lifted in and out.

Wednesday 3rd July

I had a migraine this morning so Dembe stayed with me until I felt well enough to get up at around 11am. He is such an angel.

I didn’t think I would make Dembe’s obedience training class this evening but I did. This evening only two sets of puppy parents turned up, us and another couple. It turned out brilliantly for us all as it meant the dogs had all the barn to work in and we practically had a one on one lesson. Dembe was a little star, working so hard and catching on to the task required really quickly.

Tonights work was heel work with changing paces, turns and getting your dog to hit a mark. Jays confidence is really growing and it is wonderful to see the bond between him and Dembe really growing.

As there were only two dogs there Dembe and Rhea a German Shepard, we were able to work on recall using a long retractable lead. I have been working on recall with Dembe since he was 8 weeks old. Jay has told me that Dembe is really good when he is out and about , he can be recalled even when playing with other dogs.

Tonight I decided to have a go, my cue for calling Dembe back was when the trainer said the word Pink. Dembe was half way up the barn sniffing around on the floor when the trainer said Pink. I used his command “Dembe Come” and he rocketed back to me. I think the trainer was a little surprised at how quickly he came back. I was so chuffed as that was the first time recalling him outside of the house / back garden. Jay also had a go and Dembe was equally as good for him.

Dembe is a totally different dog now from the holligan that attended the first class 5 weeks ago. I am so glad that we have put the work in as he does us proud most times.

Thursday 4th July

Yesterday Dembe’s replacement fountain arrived for his paddling pool. Jay emptied the water out of his paddling pool and refilled it and got the fountain set up. Dembe is crazy about it and it has encouraged him to get in and out of the paddling pool more.

Jay took him out to Woodbury Castle for his walk and practiced lead walking and recall with him. He ensured he called him back when he was playing with another dog as well. He came back on the first call. The work that Jay puts on with Dembe is phenomenal. I am very proud of him as it isn’t something that comes easily to him. Our Trainer is brilliant and will always come over and show Jay one on one what he is asking him to do. Jay finds following instructions difficult, he is fine when he knows what he is doing but gets very daunted with new stuff.

Dembe has played pretty much all day in the garden playing with the fountain.

Friday 5th July

34 weeks old today.

As the weather was nice we spent a lot of the day out in the garden.

Saturday 6th July

It has been another lovely day so we have spent lots of time in the garden. Dembe has been asleep this afternoon, we have just had a fighter jet go over, extremely loud and that didn’t wake him from his sleep. I am pleased about that as the Weimaraners would have been hysterical after that.

This evening we popped up to my parents caravan and Dembe had a lovely play with their dog Maggie.

Due to flies coming into the house I got a fly screen curtain. Its left Dembe a bit perplexed at times!

If anyone is wondering why we have a Dunelm basket in the garden…..last year we went to Dunelm and bought over £100 of stuff, when we were at the checkout , me in my wheelchair with Jay pushing it, we asked if we could have a carrier bag ( we had come without bags as we weren’t expecting to go there), the staff said they didn’t have any and then proceeded to chat amongst themselves whilst Jay struggled putting our shopping in the basket and my wheelchair. We got to the car and Jay was so furious at the rudeness of the staff, no offers of help etc. He got the basket and threw it into the car. So now I have a Dunelm washing basket – to take the washing to the line. If they had supplied a bag or hadn’t been quite so unhelpful we wouldn’t have it.

Sunday 7th July

Today we took Dembe to the local supermarket and did a small shop he coped admirably with the challenges it presented. He wore his yellow coat which says Assistance dog in Training.

The only problem we had was the number of people that kept stopping us to have a cuddle with him. The vast majority asked us before making a fuss of him but annoyingly there were a few who just ploughed straight in and petted him. It is really hard as you don’t want to upset people by telling them to leave him alone but they wouldn’t go up and pet a Police dog so why do they think it is ok to come up and make a fuss of a dog who has a high viz yellow jacket on who is clearly working. Anyway rant over.

Going to have to cut todays diary entry short as I ended up with an eye injury today and have an abrasion to my cornea so it is very sore.

W/C 24th June 2019 2nd week of Holiday

Monday 24th June

This is Jays second week of his holiday, Dembe has really enjoyed having us both home. Jay took him out early for his walk and then at around 10am we went to the local garden centre (different one from last week) . We had a wander around the grounds and then we went to the cafe as they had an easily accessible outside area.

I’d give Dembe a 7/10 for his behaviour at the garden centre as I wish he would just learn to settle down rather than be terrified he is missing out on something. We actually call him FOMO ( fear of missing out) . He did bark and although it was embarrassing I am going to give him a pass for this one. There was a lady being pushed in a squeaky wheel chair. It sounded just like one of Dembe’s squeaky toys. As soon as she was pushed past her Dembe gave a couple of barks. We know he doesn’t have issues with wheelchairs, he has seen me in mine, he saw loads at the hospital last week. The barking was triggered by the squeaking.

He did cry a few times and he spent the time moving between Jay and I getting treats. The staff were telling us how well behaved he was for such a young dog. Although he let himself down by jumping up at the waitress when she brought a tray over. Again that is also our fault because Jay had given him too much lead.

After the garden centre we popped to the vets to get Dembe weighed as we have cut down his food due to the amount of treats he is getting due to training and to prevent him from getting fat. He weighed in at 26.6kg so his weight gain has slowed, we don’t want him losing weight we just don’t want him packing it and getting tubby.

The vet popped his head around the door and gave him a quick once over and he said that he is still growing so not to panic. He is big for a labrador, just to check I measured him against one of my quilting rulers and from the floor to his shoulder is 23 inches so just under 2ft at the shoulder. The vet told us to keep doing what we are doing.

Tuesday 25th June

I was knackered after all our running around yesterday so haven’t written much in his dairy for today. We spent the afternoon lying on my bed which he always loves.

He had his first taste of Lamb breast bone today which he loved and polished off very quickly.

He spent a bit of time in the garden in his favourite chair as well.

Wednesday 26th June

Oh dear Dembe doesn’t seem to get on with Lamb. He had a couple of runny poos this morning. Thankfully last weekend I bought some stuff to settle canine dicky tums so we gave him a syringe full of that, which he happily took. It did the trick as his stomach calmed right down and his poos went back to being firm. Probably TMI

The little toad had me up at the crack of dawn – 5.30am and refused to go back to sleep. Within 30 minutes of being downstairs he was on his back snoring his head off. Why this wasn’t possible to achieve upstairs I have no idea. Who knows what goes on in the canine mind other than how to get mummy wrapped around my paws.

We had obedience training this evening and he did really well. He did have a bit of a bark tonight ( all the dogs did at some point) but that was because we were right by the five bar gate at the entrance of the barn and he could see the farm cat wandering around the yard. It was winding him up no end mainly because he has never seen a cat before.

We made a bit of a boo boo before class and gave him his usual walk. He found a six month old puppy to play with so by the time we got to class he was hot and in play mode rather than work mode so we took the first 20 minutes just getting him to the right level of energy to work.

It was quite funny as the trainer kept going on about the sound of the fridge door, I think me telling him about this last week had tickled him. Dembe no matter where he is in the garden or house will come to you in the kitchen if you open the fridge door. We use it quite often if he is refusing to come indoors or if he is upstairs. It is funny that one of our recall commands is the sound of the fridge opening.

We found out this evening that we have been putting his lead on incorrectly some of the time. It is annoying because in the instructions it doesn’t state there is a wrong way and a right way. It just assumes that everyone will walk their dog on their left. Jay is right handed but dominant left hand – I know that is weird right, so he walks Dembe on the right. Which means the lead needs putting on slightly differently. The trainer has shown us how to do it so we both know now how it goes on. Hopefully it will be a lot more comfortable for Dembe now.

I can’t get over how big he looks in this photo.

Thursday 27th June

Yesterday we put the gazebo up and sorted out the garden ready for our BBQ on Saturday afternoon / evening. Dembe was a really good boy and stayed plonked on his chair whilst it was all done. He was a bit annoyed that his paddling pool was emptied but was thrilled as soon as it started to be filled up again.

It was crazy hot yesterday so we didn’t walk him a second time . We kept hosing him down and playing in the paddling pool, he was more than happy. Even I was struggling at times with the heat and came over faint a few times. Dembe has been using his cooling mat a lot at the moment.

Friday 28th June

Dembe is 33 weeks old today, it seems a lifetime ago that he was a little tiny bundle of energy.

I am dreading Jay going back to work next week as Dembe is crying constantly when Jay leaves the house to go shopping etc. He really loves the “pack” being all together. The crying constantly has only started this week and as you can imagine is highly irritating . He has only ever cried once when Jay has gone to work and that was when he was tiny and it lasted only 30 seconds. Now he will stand at the window for ages.

It is very warm again today but with some gusty wind it is making it more bearable for me and the mutt. Todays activity has mainly been standing on the sofa and barking out of the window.

We went over to my parents caravan this afternoon and Dembe had another play with Maggie. He was shattered after that and was flat out in the back of the car.

Just as well as we will be having an early night due to having friends over tomorrow for a BBQ.

Saturday 29th June

Dembe doesn’t know quite what to make of what is happening in the house as stuff is being moved and cleaned etc. He got very excited at one point and was running around like a loon. We had to stop him as he had been in his paddling pool and we were terrified he was going to slip over and hurt himself.

His new ID tag came in this morning’s post. I wasn’t expecting it until next week as I only ordered it yesterday. I love it. I have wanted a copper coloured ID tag for him for ages but just couldn’t find one I really liked.

It was really strange as the tag the design had on Etsy used the name Frankie. Which was the name of my beloved boy who passed away at the end of December 2018. Another weird coincidence there have been so many with Dembe.

Dembe was brillaintly behaved during the BBQ only once jumping up trying to get someones food. He was fascinated with beer though and we caught him a few times trying to drink out of any glasses that were on the floor. He kept us all amused with his crocodile throwing antics especially when he managed to throw him straight into his outdoor water bowl.

He was so tired by the time everyone left at 10.20pm that Jay had to carry him up to bed.

Sunday 30th June

Dembe was shattered and didn’t wake up for breakfast until Jay woke up at 6.30am in a panic thinking he hadn’t locked the front door last night ( he had drunk rather a lot). Dembe came straight up to bed afterwards and only got up at 9am because I got up. I had struggled to get to sleep last night and was still awake at 2am this morning,

Dembe really doesn’t want to move at all today and is just very cuddly. I am so proud of the way he behaved last night. He was so much calmer around my friends little boy Liam and when Liam fell asleep on the sofa Dembe stayed in the lounge with him guarding him. Dembe stayed on the sofa opposite so he could have a full view of the lounge and could keep an eye on Liam.

We had lots of lovely feedback from our guests at how well behaved Dembe was and that his training was paying off. It was lovely to have such a calm dog that didn’t bat an eyelid as people wandered into the house unannounced as I told all our guests just to come straight in. Not that he ever barks at the door anyway.

All of us have pretty much spent the day like this! Have a good week folks.

Week Commencing 17th June 2019 – Poorly boy

Monday 17th June

Throughout yesterday Dembe had been making a noise like he was trying to clear his throat. I turned to Dr Google as I could feel the new puppy parent panic starting to rise in me. That mixed with my anxiety and I was winding myself up into a proper frenzy. Everything I looked at was suggesting it was Kennel Cough, as none of my previous other dogs have suffered with it, I just had no clue if it was or wasn’t. Dembe certainly wasn’t feeling that good and at times to the touch he was feeling warm.

Last week at dog training the teacher had suggested to us about getting a digital thermometer and now I was really wishing that I had because, I simply didn’t know if he did have a temperature and touch isn’t a reliable indicator – although I was pretty good with the Weims and could tell by touch but Dembe has so much hair that it makes it much harder.

The cough / noise Dembe was making wasn’t the sound that I had seen on YouTube videos so I really was unsure. I wanted to get him checked out so Jay rang the vets and got an appointment for 2.30pm. As there was a suspicion of Kennel Cough we would be seen in the carpark to avoid spreading it to other dogs. Dembe definitely wasn’t feeling himself, just a little off colour compared to normal. I got myself into such a state waiting for the appointment that my IBS kicked off in style. The appointment couldn’t come soon enough.

The vet came out to the car park and it was a bit awkward or sad as she was the vet that put Frankie to sleep back in December 2018 and Willow to sleep in December 2017. It was really hard. I didn’t recognise her, I think the events were just so traumatic for me when Frankie passed away that I only have flashes of memory from that day. Jay had taken Willow down by himself as I was looking after Frankie and Mollie. Jay came in with me ( we had Mollie with us) when it was Frankies turn and left before it happened. Which is why he recognised the vet. She was so happy to see that we had a new baby now and we were moving on with our lives despite the awful start to the year. Mollie passed away 7 days after Frankie after suffering a catastrophic stroke. We basically went from 3 dogs to none in the space of 55 weeks.

She gave Dembe a good check over, no temperature, no kennel cough. She believed he had an irritated throat after being sick late Wednesday night after bringing up a chunk of bone ( he had been chewing on earlier in the day). It certainly fitted the time line as he first started making the noise on Thursday morning ( but it was sporadic, on Sunday he did it 8 to 10 times whereas in the days before it was much less than that.) He was given an injection of anti-inflammatory which then put me on edge as this was the drug that destroyed our first Weimaraners kidneys and eventually killed him 10 days before his third birthday. Frankie couldn’t tolerate this medication either as it made he pee blood. So I was watching Dembe like a hawk every time he went out for a wee. Thankfully he seemed to cope with it. An hour after the injection he was back to his normal self so the sore throat has been making him feel off colour. He didn’t make the noise again for the rest of the day.

Tuesday 18th June

Dembe has only made the weird throat clearing noise twice today and that was at 4am after he had a big yawn. So a definite improvement, he is also back to normal after being off colour yesterday.

Today we had to travel down to Plymouth as I had a hospital appointment. Jay is going to look after Dembe whilst I attend the clinic using my mobility scooter. Dembe isn’t used to long car journeys and can be a bit whingey going in the car for a walk. Its not anything terrible, he just squeaks making a crying noise. Its nothing like the constant barking we used to get from Willow the minute the car moved off the drive! For the first 15 minutes he cried continually, he then he settled and slept the rest of the way.

Whilst I was in my appointment Jay found a car parking space and then walked Dembe around the hospital grounds. Finishing up outside the hospital foyer. Dembe was exposed to sirens, buses, cars, wheelchairs, children, people and took everything in his stride. He got lots of admiring glances and comments. He was petted a few times as well with people telling Jay what a handsome, well behaved lad he was.

The best bit of my hospital visit was coming outside and seeing Jay with Dembe sat nicely beside him. Hearing Jay say to Dembe “look there’s mummy”, Dembe went crazy, almost jumping onto my lap. We then all walked back to the car. This was the first time since we had started the dog training that we had walked Dembe on the new lead with me on the mobility scooter. Previously in this situation I have spent the whole time worrying that I would run over Dembe as Jay was failing to get him under control and couldn’t see what the problem was. Now I could chat to Jay whilst on my scooter without having to exhaust myself looking for Dembe getting too close.

Dembe was so much better in the car on the way home and just slept for the whole journey.

Wednesday 19th June

Dembe was like a dog with two tails when the post arrived this morning, as I bought him a second crocodile toy. I was concerned as this is his absolute favourite toy that should it get damaged I might not be able to replace it which would lead to a sad puppy.

It is crazy how quickly they grow, he isn’t my tiny baby anymore. I had a freak out this morning when I came out of the shower and he was in his bed, which we got before he came home with us and now he takes up the whole thing. When we bought the bed Jay was convinced we shouldn’t have got such a big bed but I knew how quickly he would grow. The first photo is at 8 weeks old and the second is today.

We have obedience training tonight, I always get a bit nervous in case he decides to do a week one on us again! Tonight he wasn’t brilliant – not as good as last week and that was our fault. My health took a bit of a nose dive last week so I didn’t do as much training with him as I should have. As a consequence he wasn’t as focused as he should have been. His attention span was just so short tonight. It was weird though as all the dogs had their moments of naughtiness. Or maybe I am no longer solely focused on Dembe during the training and I am noticing more? Who knows but I will be back on the case this week.

During the class the trainer asked how many people still play with your dog. I said I do every day which is true. I probably play at least 4 times a day with him. We mess about on the bed and have a cuddle, as I need to rest after doing the stairs. It has become a habit now where we have a play everyday for 5 to 10 minutes. He always brings me a toy, wagging his tail furiously and then stands over me. Finally he will lie on me and we will have a good snuggle. I love our play times. No one else really commented about playing with their dogs and that made me feel sad. I know Dembe is much younger than all the other dogs and still a baby but every dog needs a play time. I am sure they do play with their dogs and it was probably me being too vocal again.

My phone is full of photos like the one above, blurred because he never stays still long enough. If I get a good photo it is a complete fluke.

Absolutely shattered after Dog Training

Thursday 20th June

We usually have a very quiet day after Dembe has attended his obedience training class the night before. Not today !!! He was bouncing off the walls from the moment he got up. So much so Jay got him out quite early for a nice long walk up on the common to see if that would subdue him a little. It didn’t he was just having a bouncy day.

My half yearly service on my oxygen concentrator and oxygen canister. In the past the stair gate would have been up to prevent the Weims from making a nuisance of themselves whilst the engineer worked. This time I let Dembe just wander about but kept him downstairs. For the first time ever Dembe barked at a visitor, he was wagging his tail furiously as he did it but it took us by surprise as this was the first time he has barked at anyone at the door. He doesn’t bark at the post men / women, delivery drivers, friends and family when they come so why he took exception to the Oxygen engineer I have no clue. He just wasn’t happy at this guys presence in the house. Funny because he pricks my spidey senses too.

Later on in the afternoon my friend Heather popped over. Dembe adores Heather and went mental. He just loves her but after him barking at the engineer I did wonder how he would be with her. Same as usual completely nuts. He literally throws himself on her and she is the only visitor he ever does it to.

Dembe decided he wanted both crocodiles in his bed.

Today I have been doing lots of quarter turns with Dembe, without him realising that we are doing training. When I go into the fridge if he sits like a nice boy and doesn’t throw himself at the door he gets a cocktail sausage. So now I am taking the cocktail sausage and doing the turns like we were shown at dog training last night. He has cottoned on quite quickly and now attempts to skip the steps and puts himself in the final position ready for the sausage. He is too bloody clever for his own good.

I was out in the kitchen at my embroidery machine when Jay sent me this photo of Dembe just letting it all hang out. He makes me laugh so much the crazy hound.

Friday 21st June

Dembe has decided that todays mood will be irritating or that is how it felt when he woke me up crying for no reason at all this morning at 6.30am. He had his breakfast and had been out for the toilet at 5.30am, so why he felt I needed to be sung to this morning I have no clue. So we both got up and went downstairs where he dropped his antler chew on my foot 4 times before I had taken my first sip of tea and then decided to run past me with it in his mouth and stab me behind the knee with the really sharp bit of the antler. It is safe to say I was not a fan of the blonde bastard at this point. Because I yelped – as it really hurt he did his usual ears flat against his head and as low to the floor as possible. Of course I can never stay cross with him for longer than about 10 seconds, so all was forgiven.

Today my hairdresser was coming over to sort my hair out for me. This is only the second time she has come over since Dembe arrived so I was interested to see how he would be with her after barking at the oxygen engineer yesterday. He was fine, he waited at the door, let her in had his treat and then made a bee line for her. He was really good the whole time I was having my hair done, entertaining himself playing with his toys and chewing his antler. Just goes to show when he makes the sad eyes at me when I am sewing that he doesn’t need my undivided attention 100% of the time like he makes out.

We decided we had to start doing some exposure training with Dembe so in the afternoon we took him up to the garden centre. Years ago you could sit outside and have a coffee and you could access this area through the car park. In a very disabled access friendly way…not they have blocked off this access and you now have a flight of stairs to contend with should you want to sit outside. So that was a crap start to our visit. We walked around the plants outside – well I used my mobility scooter. Dembe just wasn’t in the mood to play ball and cried and spent the whole time trying to jump on my lap which was very disappointing. So we will have to try again another day.

After the disaster at the garden centre we took him up the common and Jay took him for a walk. It was quite busy so he had lots of time with other dogs and meeting people. We then went over to my parents caravan, as he gets on brilliantly with their dog Maggie.

He was tired and hot after his hour at the caravan so we got his paddling pool out for him.

We did have quite a busy day and ended up popping out for 40 minutes to go and collect something we bought from Facebook Market place. Dembe was shattered and put himself to bed.

He has started sleeping on the floor in my room this week, up until now he has always slept on the bed with me. As long as he is comfy I really don’t mind.

Saturday 22nd June

I was woken up at 2.30am by Dembe crying so I got Jay to take him out for a wee and poo. He went but the pooing seemed to take ages. He woke me up again at 4.30 – so he was given breakfast and let out again with the same result. He then woke me up at 7.20am crying and wanted out again. His stools were very soft and not firm like usual so we decided we would keep an eye on him today. His stomach isn’t gurgling like when Mollie had an upset tummy but his wind (farts) are a weapon of mass destruction.

He hasn’t been his usual active self but it is very hot today, he has been sunbathing and generally staying close beside me. This afternoon we went up and had a lie down, Dembe making use of his cooling mat whilst I ( with my messed up autonomic nervous system) put my electric blanket on as I was cold. Despite the temperature outside being in the high 20’s.

We came downstairs just before 4pm to find Jay sat in Dembe’s paddling pool attempting to cool off. Why he had to go in with all his clothes on is beyond me! Just a short while after I took this photo poor Dembe had diarrhea. As he is quite well in himself at the moment I am not too concerned. He is eating and drinking fine.

After the bout of explosive shits, Dembe seemed to perk up loads. His tummy has been hurting him I think. So tonight for his dinner I gave him some scrambled egg and boiled white rice. He really enjoyed it so I am now looking forward to having a dog that turns his nose up at kibble now he has had a taste of this. The Weimaraners were terrible for turning their nose up at normal food when they had been poorly and had been fed chicken and rice etc.

So fingers crossed we have a relatively quiet night, Dembe isn’t being walked this evening just to be on the safe side especially with it being warm. Hopefully he will feel a bit better tomorrow.

Sunday 23rd June

Thankfully Dembe is an awful a lot better this morning. He didn’t need let out during the night for the toilet as he had done the night before and he also had a solid poo first thing. Which is probably TMI!

It is much cooler today thank goodness as Dembe was really struggling with the heat yesterday. Jay still got him out reasonably early and Dembe had a nice play with a Pointer up on the common.

Dembe has come back from his walk had a little nap and is now sat happily chewing his antler chew. He has been very chewy this week and we are still extremely lucky that the only thing he has chewed that he shouldn’t has been a pair of slippers. Having seen lots of photos of destructive Labradors we have got off very lightly.

Dembe’s new trick this week is raiding Jays dirty laundry basket. It is a pop up R2D2 one, which Dembe is using to his advantage by slamming his paws down on it, which collapses it and then stealing Jays dirty pants from it. The first time I found a pair of Jays pants beside my bed I was scratching my head as to how they got there. Then a few hours later I found Dembe hiding behind my bed chewing Jays pants – brave pup. So I asked Jay if he had left his pants on the floor, which he said he hadn’t. Then we both witnessed Dembe’s new trick of raiding the laundry basket! It gave us a bit of a shock as that is quite a bit of skill and intelligence to work out how to raid that.

Week Commencing 10th June 2019

Monday 10th June

The weather was absolutely lousey and freezing cold today. Dembe got his first experience of hail today as well and he just couldn’t work out where it was coming from.

During the afternoon when we had some loud thunder he gave a half hearted woof at it and that was it. So far so good as I don’t want him being frightened of loud noises like the Weimaraners all were.

This morning he was absolutely fascinated by Inspector Montalbano ( I was watching it after I had recorded it on Saturday night). He watched the screen for ages.

Like my last dog Frankie he likes sitting with a cushion either tucked up against him or resting his head on one.

We had a really quiet day, just the two of us as is usual for a Monday. During his evening walk there was even more thunder but it didn’t bother him at all. In the evening it was raining really heavily and he refused to go out for a wee!

Oh and he still loves playing with his crocodile!

Tuesday 11th June

Dembe woke up at 5.20am and had breakfast and after that he cried continually. It was raining very heavily and he didn’t want to go outside to go to the toilet in the rain. Despite the fact he never has an issue going out for a walk in the rain. It is also really cold for this time of year so I have ended up putting the heating on. Dembe only went outside for the toilet once the rain had stopped.

He was incredibly bouncy this morning so we got him up the common before 9am. He whined all the way up in the car so I had to just ignore him which I hate doing but the more I fuss him when he whines the more he will do it. I have found out that he makes no noise at all when he is out in the car with Jay. It is only when I am there that he makes a fuss.

I am already getting nervous about tomorrow nights obedience training class. He can’t be worse than he was last week surely?

Jay and I have been discussing how much bigger Dembe suddenly seems. We still see him as quite small and puppyish, lets face it just a few months ago he was tiny. On Sunday he will be 7 months old by 12 months he will have reached his full adult height the next year or so will be spent filling out. It is crazy how quickly the last 5 months have flown by.

I have been practising every day with his figure of 8 lead ensuring that he is used to it before we go back to obedience training,

Wednesday 12th June

Jay took Dembe out very early this morning, before 7am as I was still asleep when they left. I didn’t hear a thing. He had a really good time on his walk and played with 3 different dogs . One was a really old boy black Labrador whose mind was willing but his body was not alas. He did enjoy having a little play with Dembe and let out little chirps of delight.

We popped down the vets to have Dembe weighed. OMG the chunk weighed in at 25.7kg, so although the vets say his weight is good due to the amount of treats he is having with all his training we will be cutting his meal size down. We will be keeping an eye on his weight and if he starts looking too skinny then we will up his food intake again. He was a very good boy at the vets and jumped on the scales and sat nice and still. It was a real shame though as we missed Kate as she is on holiday so we will pop down next week as Jay is on holiday for the next two weeks after Saturday. Sadly we found out that the pheasant chick we rescued passed away two days after we handed it into the vets. I had guessed things hadn’t turned out well as they hadn’t posted about it on the vets page. It was very weak and cold when we found it. I wonder if we prolonged its agony rather than saving it?

We had dog training this evening, Dembe was a bloody star. We did the whole lesson with him wearing his figure of 8 lead. He had a couple of barks but was easily distracted by doing the finger tip massage. He walked like a dream. It is wonderful to see the bond between him and Jay develop as they do the training together. Dembe constantly looks to him to see what he wants him to do next. My presence no longer distracts him.

One of the dogs that was there last week didn’t show up this evening, we found out that there had been an incident and the dog had gone back to the rescue charity. Very sad, I expect the bloke that had her was devastated as he already seemed very attached to her last week. In their place was a beautiful Doberman, who was very aggressive – a little bit frightening but it was nervous aggression like we used to have in Frankie. In the controlled environment of the class she soon started to relax and not let the presence of the other dogs bother her.

I am so proud that De,be was one of the best behaved dogs there tonight.

On the way to dog training
Snuggled in his bed

Thursday 13th June

Dembe was absolutely shattered today after last night’s training session. I tried to do some training with him but I couldn’t keep his focus as he wasn’t in the mood so I let it go and just worked on massage with him. Which he loves.

His thing today has been to bring me lots of different toys. The toy box has been emptied on numerous occasions. None of the toys seem to be played with for any length of time it just seems very important to him that they are all over the lounge floor.

He fell asleep on the way home from his dog training class last night, he lay across the back seat of the car looking like a skinned rabbit! He looks so long and big now it can be really surprising to look at him because he still seems like a baby to us. He really can’t be far off Mollie’s height now. He is only 3 kilos lighter than her now. She was our eldest Weimaraner and our smallest.

I have never known such a happy dog as Dembe. His tail just wags constantly. He loves being praised and having a fuss made of him.

Friday 14th June

It was a chewy day today, Dembe got out his puppy nyla- bone which he hasn’t played with in ages and sat chewing that on my lap. Later on he got his huge nyla-bone out and gave that a chomp. I am wondering if his teeth are bothering him again as all he seems to want to do is chew at the moment.

Jay was on an early shift today so when he finished we took Dembe out and then headed over to my parents van. Dembe played with his mate Maggie for a while. When he came home he was absolutely shattered and fell asleep immediately. My parents had bought Dembe a new toy so when he came around after his nap, he went and got it straight away.

He likes it as it has different textures and makes a crinkly noise.

Saturday 15th June

Dembe woke me up at 4.30am and I am so grateful he did. I had started going into another bloody migraine. I got Jay up to feed him and then went to the bathroom. Both my eyes were blood shot and I looked like Casper the friendly ghost. My left eye felt like it was being stabbed with an icepick. How he sensed I was in trouble I have no idea but he is such a good boy. He stuck to my side like glue for most of the day yesterday. The photo above is when I managed to make it downstairs after 10am. Dembe just lay quietly beside me. It is so strange how he moderates his behaviour. When I am sick he calms right down and just sticks to me. He is only just under 7 months old and should be bouncing off the walls, he did the same when he was tiny and I came down with a chest infection and a sinus infection. He is so in tune with me it is unreal. Such a clever chap.

We got a bit of sun in the afternoon as I was feeling better Dembe knew it was ok to leave me. He went out on his chair and had a sunbathe. He took piggy wiggy with him.

It is so funny both Travis ( our first Weimaraner, Mollies brother and Frankie / Willows uncle) and Frankie loved to sit on the stairs like this. Dembe has been sitting like this for months but this is the first time I have been able to capture it. Normally as soon as he sees my phone out he gets up and comes towards me. He was feeling how I felt, fed up waiting for Jay to finish work and start his two week holiday.

We went over to my parents van again this evening and Dembe had a massive play with Maggie. It is really lovely to see how much my parents like Dembe. My dad is always throwing the ball for Maggie and De,be to chase. My mum is always getting sneaky cuddles in. It is so sweet. It is also really nice that we can go to the caravan site and not worry about the noise the dogs make or about other dogs approaching. The Weims were really nervous aggressive after being attacked when young. Who can blame them but it made it very difficult to take them anywhere.

Sunday 16th June

Jay is on holiday at long last. He took Dembe out by himself this morning. I think it is important that he gets some time alone with him so that they can bond. It is clear that they love each other but Jay should also get one on one time with the pupster. They had a lovely walk together with Dembe getting lots of fuss from some elderly lady labrador owners who thought he was just cracking. He also had a bit of a grumble at a cyclist as the noise of the bike scared him. Luckily the cyclist did think it was funny as Dembe made half barks at him.

I can’t believe how big he is getting. He still doesn’t have the wide head of a fully grown Labrador as yet. Today marks his 7th month birthday. The last 5 months have whizzed by. He has changed so much in that time, he is such a loving, caring boy. We worship him, if you didn’t guess. I am amazed by his intelligence on a daily basis. He is so bright it is just mind blowing. When you train him to do stuff he responds immediately and he is just so willing to please.

He is really going to enjoy the next two weeks with Jay being home.

W/C 3rd June 2019

Monday 3rd June

Jay was on an early as usual so it was me and the pupster, Dembe decided that I simply must get up at 6.15am because he was bored. We both went down stairs and then the blonde bastard went back to sleep leaving what the urgency was for waking me up.

As Dembe point blank refuses to go out when Jay is on an early start he was very bouncy come the afternoon. He spent lots of time in the garden as the weather was nice.

He met my friend Laura today for the first time. He spent the whole of her visit trying to jump on her back whilst she sat on the sofa. The only other person he does this to is Leanne. I don’t know why he does it. I managed to distract him with some treats and got him to show off his sock trick.

When Jay got home he took him for a nice long walk to burn off some energy.

He has started being a bit of a git at bed time ( Dembe not Jay ). He is refusing to go to the toilet and just wants to play. What used to be a 5 minute trip outside is now taking at least 30 minutes. Even though he does want to go as he always has a huge wee.

I got woken up at 10.30pm by Dembe crying whilst lying in my door way as if the baby gate was still there. The baby gate has been gone for a few weeks now. I called Jay who took him outside, it was a doubly successful trip and Dembe soon settled afterwards.

Tuesday 4th June

Dembe was very tired today and spent much of the day sleeping. The weather wasn’t great so he didn’t spend a lot of time in the garden, when he was awake he wanted cuddles and my undivided attention.

We had lots of deliveries today and Dembe was brilliant waiting whilst I sorted them out. The Weims always had to be shut in the kitchen whenever I answered the door as they would bark the place down. When it was just Frankie and Mollie I could leave them be as they were too old to bother with the front door. It still seems weird that I don’t have to open a pack of Jumbones whenever we have visitors or put Dembe in the kitchen. All I have to say to Dembe is wait and he stays where he is or jumps on the sofa nearest the door. He never tries to make a break for it or barks, he just waits patiently for me to give him a treat when the door is closed.

Today was raw bone delivery day. As I couldn’t get the beef marrow bones as they were out of stock, I had to get beef rib bones. I also got one lambs breast bone as that was all they had available. Being a life long vegetarian and going by the photos on line the bones looked normal size, I thought they would be 7 to 10 inches in length. I couldn’t have been more wrong. My freezer now looks like it contains dinosaur bones!

I had to give him this bone as it simply would not fit in the freezer. The freezer had to be completely rearranged to accommodate his bones. Thankfully we don’t use our freezer like that and could make the space by getting creative!

He does love his bones and is allowed 2 per week.

Wednesday 5th June

Dembe woke up at 5am so I kept him entertained until 5.30am and then got Jay to get up and give him his breakfast. Once he had that he came straight back upstairs and slept until 7.15am. I actually had to wake him up as my back was sore and I couldn’t lie in bed any longer.

Dembe was full of beans and kept going upstairs to wake Jay up. He was successful on the second attempt . As he was so very bouncy we had him up the common before 8am.

We have obedience training this evening so Jay has had to swap his day off from Tuesday to Wednesday. I am really nervous about the class tonight, I have got really bad social anxiety at the moment. I am also anxious about how Dembe will behave. I know he is a good dog and relatively well behaved, However its in the lap of the gods tonight.

Well my nightmares about puppy training came true. It is like Dembe found my list of concerns and just worked his way through them. Martin the trainer spent the most time with us. You know your dog is a terror when the trainer keeps coming back to you. The dog that was there I simply do not recognise as my sweet boy Dembe. He has never shown the behaviours at home that he showed here tonight. He was literally bouncing off the walls. He wanted to play with the 4 other dogs, when he couldn’t play ( and didn’t get to play) he then started barking which would set another couple of dogs off and then it was a viscous cycle. He basically ignored Jay and I as he was so determined to have a play with his new mates. Jay spent the evening having his arm yanked out of the socket as Dembe was going everywhere except where he needed to be.

I wanted the ground to open up and swallow me. Logically I know if he was an angel we wouldn’t be going. I think the whole evening gave me flash backs of Frankie and Willow when they were pups and what utter hooligans that they were. It took until they were 7 for them to start to calm down.

The harness we use for Dembe in the car and on the walks was utterly useless. He stretched out all the ties so it was hanging off him and gave us even less control. As soon as we walked through the door I was online ordering a slip lead / head collar for him. I never want to go through an evening like that again. If I hadn’t paid for it up front I doubt I would have gone back!

Thursday 6th June

Due to Dembe wearing himself out at Obedience class last night he didn’t wake for breakfast until gone 6am and then came back to bed and slept until 8am. Unheard of.

I had to readjust his harness before Jay took him out for a walk as it was just so badly out of shape that it was way too big for him. Jay took him out and at the end of the walk was doing some lead training with him. The new slip lead comes tomorrow. The whole reason we had used a harness was because he was choking himself when on a lead attached to his collar and it was frightening. However it became pretty clear last night that all the harness had done was given him much more ability to pull whilst on a lead because of the lower centre of gravity and he could get all four legs behind it.

I am working on his whinging as well, I am not responding when he whines now. I have been programmed by him to respond every time he makes a noise. I was very anxious when he first came home and was terrified I was going to hurt him (unintentionally), having lost Frankie and Mollie within 7 days and deep down blaming myself for it ( even though logically Frankie had been bad for a while and there was nothing that could have prevented Mollies catastrophic stroke) I panicked when looking after Dembe. Every noise he made I would run, If I couldn’t hear him breathing at night I would wake him up. I was like a new mother and the anxiety was exhausting me. I made a rod for my own back, so I am having to fight the urge to respond.

I am dreading next weeks obedience class….I just don’t know what on earth he will do next!

As part of our homework from the obedience training we had to write a list of the behaviours we don’t want when he is an adult. So here it is

We were both exhausted and as Jay was on a late night we had an early night. Dembe fell asleep with his head over my ankles.

Friday 7th June

Dembe was exhausted again today and hasn’t really done much. When we had a break in the awful weather we went out into the garden and I managed to get some of the training practice done with him. He is responding very quickly when he see’s my hand in the air. Which is our first part of his recall training. He already does really well on his recall but after his performance on Wednesday night I no longer trust him in that environment to actually do what he has been doing since he was 9 weeks old.

Hi sleep lead didn’t arrive until around 17.30 last night, Jay was on a 7pm finish. So I practised getting the lead on and off him correctly. It is very easy. Although he really isn’t impressed. I do want him to be happy enough with it on Wednesday that we can go to class with it on. Just to show we have listened and we are doing everything we are supposed to.

He celebrated his 30 week birthday today.

Saturday 8th June

Dembe had us up at 6am and despite having breakfast he refused to settle. I ended up getting up with him. For some reason he repeatedly paid visits to his sex bed which he hasn’t done in a while. And he never does that in the morning its usually in the evening! Maybe there is a bitch in season nearby that he can smell?

Despite his eagerness to get up this morning after Jay had walked him he went straight back to sleep. On his walk he bumped into Millie and Molly the English Bull Terriers he adores and hasn’t seen in a while. The owners couldn’t believe how big he had got in the few weeks since they have last seen him.

Jay is on another late night so it will be a long day. Hopefully Dembe will stay calm and sedate as I am feeling really rough. I can’t put my finger on what is wrong I just know I feel awful. I won’t even bother getting dressed today.

Jay has had a quick training session on how to use the figure of 8 lead and has walked Dembe through the house with it on. Dembe isn’t that impressed but he isn’t still furiously trying to remove it all the time. So we are getting there, tomorrow we are going to find a quiet location like a car park and do some concentrated lead training with him so he can get used to it before Wednesday and hopefully be more under control.

At around 4pm yesterday afternoon I managed to get out in the back garden with Dembe and do some more training with him. I got him sitting patiently next to me for 20 minutes with his figure of 8 lead on. I also practised taking it on and off so that he gets used to it also.

Sunday 9th June

Dembe was a little git this morning waking me up at 5.22am and then refusing to settle back down to sleep. In the end I gave up and came downstairs, where he immediately went back to sleep on the sofa. It makes zero sense why he thought it was play time upstairs when he is so shattered he goes back to sleep once we have changed locations.

We got him out at around 9am, Jay took him for his normal off the lead walk and because the car park was quiet he then put him on the figure of 8 lead and did some lead work around the car-park. They say you should go to dog training classes to train the owner. Well that is definitely the case with Jay ( and me), when I try and let him know that he isn’t doing stuff right and that he is confusing Dembe by saying “come” which is his recall command he immediately goes on the defensive. I explained that he should use heel so Dembe doesn’t get confused. That went down like a lead balloon.

Dembe did after a bit of protest start walking beautifully beside Jay. I am hoping at next week’s class Jay will get some instruction on walking him to heel and he will see how its done, gaining confidence that he can do it. To be fair we have never really bothered with obedience training with any of our previous dogs but I want Dembe to be my assistance dog and he will need to be good on the lead and to behave in public if that is going to happen. I can’t have him being unruly and naughty.

We have had some victories this week, I am now able to groom him with the furminator or any brush without him trying to turn around and bite it. He has been like this since he was a puppy and flatly refused to be brushed and would sink his teeth into you should you be foolish enough to attempt it.

Jay has also stepped up with the training and has lead trained ( heel work ) at every opportunity, even when like today it has ended up with both him and Dembe being soaked through.

I am hoping that on Wednesday night the other dog owners and the guy running the class can see the work we have put in with Dembe.

W/C 27th May 2019

Monday 27th May

Well despite it being a bank holiday in England today Jay is working. He does one a year to help them out. It kept our Monday routine the same as usual, the only difference was that he didn’t come home for lunch today.

The weather is cooler and a bit blustery so Dembe didn’t want to go in his paddling pool. He isn’t a stupid dog and only goes in it when the weather is warm. He was full of beans today so I have kept him entertained playing ball and tug with him.

As he point blank refuses early morning walks when Jay is on an early shift, he was very bouncy . I had to keep distracting him from going after bumble bee’s. He finds them absolutely fascinating. I have a feeling that it wont be a case of if he gets stung but rather when he gets stung as he likes snapping at the bee’s as they take off from my chive flowers. Curiosity is going to get the better of him so some Piriton has been bought in case of allergic reaction.

He finally collapsed and went to sleep at around 2pm after being on the go since 7am bar 20 minutes sleep. Dembe has never slept the amount all the puppy books said he would. Although on the whole he is a very well behaved pup, he is boisterous at times and then it can be difficult to get his focus back on you.

Jay got back at 4pm so Dembe was taken straight out for a lovely long walk and he settled down very quickly after that,

Tuesday 28th May

The award for worst dog mum of the year goes to me, I feel awful about it. Dembe started fussing at 4.30am so I got Jay to let him out and told him quite sternly not to give him his breakfast and to bring him back up to bed. At 5.30am Dembe woke up again and wouldn’t go back to sleep so I got up. I let Jay sleep as he had been up just an hour ago. I wasn’t feeling great so I got a cup of tea and settled down to watch some Tv I’d recorded from the night before. Dembe curled up on the sofa beside me and went to sleep.

Jay got up at 7am and when he was getting his coffee shouted in to me had Dembe enjoyed his breakfast. At that point I wanted the ground to open up and swallow me. I had forgotten that Dembe wants his grub at 5.30am. Had I fed him we could have gone back to bed. I had just clean forgotten to do it. For the first time in 5 months I had messed up royally. Obviously with missing one breakfast Dembe was hardly going to starve to death and in my defence Jay does breakfast and I used to do all the other meals. Also the Weims used to have all their food out all the time and they would self regulate. So having to feed a dog regularly is not “normal” after 15 years of having Weimaraners. If I left Dembe’s food for the day in a bowl he would eat in one sitting and then be moaning he was hungry again in 30 minutes time.

We got Dembe up the common at just after 8am as with it being half term we wanted to avoid the peak times. He had a nice walk with Jay but didn’t bump into any other dogs.

He spent the rest of the day in the garden playing with his toys.

Crocodile is his favourite toy, its the only one of his soft toys that has stayed outside

Exploring the garden he managed to get himself wedged between the table and the potted palm. It took him a little while to work out how to get out of the tight squeeze!

I love this photo just for the funny face he is pulling

Wednesday 29th May

Well I managed to lose my Diary for a few days forgetting that I had put it in my large handbag to fill out whilst waiting for the boys when they were out on their walks. Due to my memory being absolutely awful along with my concept of time I have to write Dembe’s diary entries in a proper old fashioned diary everyday or I have no clue what has gone on that day. Sometimes there are clues in the photos I have taken but this week for today I am drawing a blank.

I know we took him up the common at around 7am as Jay is working 9-6 today so he will get two walks. I know that Dembe was a pretty sleepy boy today and very cuddly. But that’s it!

He has a favourite seat in the garden which he will just wander over to if the back door is open. He will just fall asleep out there.

However the little Tike also uses it to sit and destroy mum’s plants !

Thursday 30th May

All very exciting in the Morris household today as our new vacuum cleaner is arriving today. I had noticed our old one really wasn’t picking stuff up anymore and with Dembe now really beginning to moult great big balls of blonde fluff were rolling out from under furniture. It was time for something new. I decided to get a Shark Liftaway with the Pet Brush and upgraded to get a car detailing kit. Money well spent as on the first go around on the downstairs floor and the thing was half filled! The house is cleaned everyday so there was no reason why there was so much dirt in there. We are very pleased with it. Dembe still needs to be convinced.

My parents were at their caravan this evening so we popped over after Dembe’s evening walk. Maggie my parents Jack Russell Terrier was very pleased to see Dembe and came running over to our car and waited at Dembe’s car door for him to come out. They then played like mad. Dembe loves running after a ball and being chased by Maggie. They have such a lovely time together. But by the time we left which was about 30 minutes later Dembe was absolutely shattered, falling asleep in the car on the way home.

When we got in Dembe had his dinner and then settled into his basket and went straight back to sleep.

And yes that it a chewed toilet roll tube on my stairs. Dembe likes them!

Friday 31st May

I woke up at 3am with a migraine. By 5.30am it was unbearable, I rang Jay and got him to give Dembe his breakfast and to let him out for the toilet. Whilst Dembe was out the way I loaded up on painkillers and anti-emetics, I wanted to do this with Dembe out of the way in case I dropped anything. My reaction time would be a lot slower and I take a lot of powerful medications that would do him serious harm if he ingested them.

As soon as Dembe came back up to bed with me he settled with his head nuzzled in between my face and shoulder and he wouldn’t move. Even when Jay got up he refused to leave my side as he sensed I was very unwell. Jay had to really coax him to get him to go downstairs for his walk just before 9am. As soon as they came back Dembe ran straight upstairs and showered me with kisses.

At 9.30am I had to get up as my back wouldn’t take me lying down anymore. My head still hurt but at least the nausea had started to subside. Dembe was my little shadow all day long.

On Thursday I had ordered Dembe a cooling mat as it keeps being predicted we are in for another very hot summer and I also bought him a lick mat as something to do and a bit of a treat. Jay had bought him some Chicken liver pate to spread on the lick mat. So when it arrived I rinsed it off dried it and then let Dembe try it out.

He went crazy for it! He also really liked the cool mate when he had a nap later in the day.

Despite feeling very ropey I managed to get some embroidery done. Whilst I was sitting in the kitchen Dembe was playing outside. I looked out of the window and found him sat on the bench by the door.

This was the first time he had climbed up on the bench. He really liked it there as it was in the shade and very comfortable.

Saturday 1st June

Dembe was full of beans from the word go he knows that I am feeling better so he is back to his boisterous puppy behaviour. He wanted me outside playing with his football with him at 8am. So I resorted to getting a frozen bone from the freezer and giving it to him to keep him occupied. Otherwise he would have been outside barking which wouldn’t have impressed the neighbours.

Today he had his very first raw egg, the last time I tried to give him a raw egg he barked at it. However this time it was served on his lick mat and this was deemed acceptable.

As it was a really lovely day Dembe spent a lot of it out in the garden playing.

Dembe’s favourite toy is his crocodile although since he has had his paddling pool his favourite thing to do is to chuck Croc in there. He then barks at Croc demanding that I take him out again for him. This is pointless as Croc will be thrown back in again by Dembe once he has been retrieved.

Dembe also got back up on the bench again today. There is no garden furniture that is safe from him. I sent this photo to Jay whilst he was at work , in the evening we were sitting outside at the table when Jay asked me ” have you seen him get on the bench/” and just as I said yes Dembe jumped on the bench in front of Jay. Jay was left open mouthed at this. I don’t know how he thinks he was getting up there as he is now way too heavy for me to lift and with the heat I am suffering from a lot of limb weakness. So there is no way that I am putting him up there!

We went to my parents van again in the evening, Dembe and Maggie had fun again chasing after tennis balls and playing chase. He was thoroughly shattered again by the time we got home.

Sunday 2nd June

Dembe was up at the crack of dawn this morning 6am and just wouldn’t go back to sleep after having his breakfast. So we came downstairs and let Jay sleep on. We didn’t get out with him until gone 9.30am. He had a really nice walk on the common, it was ridiculously busy and so many dogs for Dembe to meet and play with. By the time they got back to the car Dembe’s tongue was hanging out to the side.

A short while after we got home we were treated to the Red Arrows display team flying over the house. This would have prompted a significant fear response in the Weimaraners that would have lasted for at least an hour until they calmed down. Thankfully Dembe wasn’t bothered at all and carried on chewing his bone on his favourite seat.

I am hoping that this bodes well for any thunder storms we may have or fireworks later in the year. I really don’t want him to be stressed out by loud noises like the Weimaraners were, by the time they were around 10 years old even the wind would scare them or heavy rain on the windows. Dembe seems to be immune thus far and we don’t react at all to loud noises so that he knows that there is nothing to fear.

As I haven’t been in the best of health this week we are having a lazy Sunday.

W/C 20th May H2O-M-G this is fun!

Monday 20th May 2019

Dembe was up early as Jay was on his usual Monday morning start time. He has been coping well with all my bedroom contents being all over the place as I am getting a new (2nd hand ) wardrobe delivered today. The Weimaraners could never cope with their environment being messed with and would get very stressed. Even moving furniture for decorating was enough to upset them. Thankfully Dembe takes it all in his stride.

He was really good when the delivery men arrived . One of them was his Uncle Paul so he loved having a massive cuddle off him. He was exceptionally well behaved as I sorted through all my stuff and slowly put everything back. It took ages as I kept having to have a rest. Dembe just lay on my pillows and just watched me, coming and giving me a cuddle whenever I stopped.

Jay got home after 5pm so Dembe was given a good run up the common as regular readers will know Dembe is not a fan of early morning walks – he refuses to leave the car. So on a Monday he has a long walk in the evening and if he is being particularly bouncy Jay will give him a walk around the block on his lunch hour.

Paul popped in on his way home from work and had a good cuddle with Dembe again. He really does adore him.

Dembe and I had a lie down on Monday afternoon for a few hours

Tuesday 21st May

Jay was day off today so we took Dembe to Woodbury Castle . It was so early that we were the only people there. Dembe had a lovely time running around and exploring the woods.

Wednesday 22nd May

Jay had stocktake at work today so was up at 2.30am and in work for 4am. We did wonder how Dembe would cope with Jay getting up early and if he would beg for his breakfast. Luckily Dembe was very good and although he got up a couple of times to see what Jay was doing he did come back to bed and settled down with me. He didn’t wake up for his breakfast at 6.05am, so I got him his breakfast and then let him out in the back garden so he could do his business. We then went back to bed and neither of us woke up until 8am which was lovely!

Jay was home from work just after 1pm, due to my mouth being painful after the extraction last week I was back at the dentist at 2,30pm. Jay took Dembe up the common whilst I was being sorted out. I had started to develop a dry socket.

This evening I taught Dembe to pull my socks off. I saw on the Broadleaf puppy group on social media that a friend of mine had taught her puppy Reggie to pull her socks off. This is the sort of thing I wanted to teach Dembe, so I asked her how she had done it and she broke down the training for me. As Dembe has always liked playing with my socks in the evening when I take them off for bed, I knew he was already interested in them. It would have been far more difficult if he had shown zero interest in them.

Initially I started with putting the sock loosely over my hand and saying “Dembe Sock”. On my first go he pulled the sock off my hand. I was utterly thrilled and gave him lots and lots of praise and cuddles. I was also aware that he might do this once and it had just been sheer coincidence. So I repeated the command and he did it again. I repeated this a few more times and then I put the sock loosely on my foot and said the same command “Dembe Sock” he pulled the sock off no problem at all. I repeated this a few more times and then shot this video

He is such a clever pup

Thursday 23rd May

This week Dembe has been waking up a lot later for his breakfast, he has been regularly sleeping past 5.30am which has been really lovely as I am not a fan of really early mornings. As Dembe was very active from the off we got him out and up the common by around 8.15am.

Jay gave him a nice long walk on the common as he was on a late night finish today. On the way back from the walk we popped into The Range and picked Dembe up a rigid paddling pool. We filled it up as soon as we got home, Dembe went a bit crazy!

We have never seen him so excited he had no clue what to do with himself. He stayed outside playing with his paddling pool until gone 2pm.

He adores his paddling pool

He was so tired he put himself to sleep up on my bed for a few hours. He really did enjoy himself.

This evening I got him to do the sock trick again, whilst we were outside on the patio. Dembe took my sock’s off fine however he then took the too the paddling pool and dropped them in there. That trick may still need some work!

Friday 24th May

We have had Dembe home with us now 20 weeks. The time has flown by. Jay and I can’t believe how much we love this little guy. He is now 28 weeks old.

At 8 weeks old Dembe liked nothing better than to chew my ties on my snuggle top. At 28 weeks old he still loves doing it but I can only fit his head on my lap instead of his whole body.

I have been working on grooming him this week as he is moulting like you wouldn’t believe. He has never liked being groomed. Even as a pup he would turn around and sink his teeth in to his brush. I have been working with him little by little with lots of treats and praise so that I can brush him with a furminator and his ordinary brush.

I’m not saying Dembe is spoilt but his dad bought some artificial turf to go under his paddling pool so he didn’t slip on the paving slabs when he was jumping in and out. This is Jay filling up Dembe’s paddling pool at 7.52am.

Dembe loves sitting on this particular garden chair. He launches off it into the paddling pool or he just sits there and sunbathes.

Today Dembe and I met a lady called Claire, who I have known for a few years on social media but we have never met in person, despite living in the same town as we both suffer from a multitude of health conditions. Dembe took a real shine to her and constantly wanted her attention and for her to throw his ball. He was absolutely exhausted by the end of her visit and was really sleepy for the rest of the day.

Saturday 25th May

Dembe has had me in stitches from first thing this morning. He is such a character

He loves having a good old nose out of the front window watching the world go by. I have nose art all over the lounge window. He reminds me a lot of our Weimaraner Willow when he does this as she was always up on the sofa looking out of the window. He has taken it a step further now and climbs up onto the window ledge completely now.

He had another day enjoying the paddling pool, sunshine and the garden!

Sunday 26th May

Poor Dembe has been absolutely shattered today after his three days of non stop fun in the garden and paddling pool. The weather hasn’t been great either with overcast grey skies and the odd spot of rain!

He has been really into his daddy today spending time having cuddles on the sofa and sleeping next to him whilst daddy played on his PS4. Every so often Dembe would wander into the kitchen to check on me as I was using my embroidery machine quilting cushion fronts for the garden chairs.

He has had two lovely walks up the common and has enjoyed his very quiet Sunday.