Happy New Year

This weeks Diary update won’t be in diary form as it will just be a round up of the last few weeks and will mainly be photographs.

On Monday 23rd December we were visited by Sam, Gemma and Sarah. Dembe was a good boy and behaved himself. He was spoilt rotten by Sam, who bought him some tennis balls ( they are still played with daily) a bone shaped chew and a tin of sardines which Dembe had for breakfast on Christmas morning.

On Christmas Eve it was just me and the boy as hubby was working for the first time in nearly a decade on this day. Dembe spent much of the day asleep on or near me.

Dembe was spoilt rotten Christmas day, he had his tin of sardines from Sam for breakfast and then he had all his presents to open.

This is just some of the toys he got. We got him a pop up tunnel which he went through twice on Christmas morning but has refused to go through ever since. He got a new food bowl, so many bags of treats, toys a new lead for his obedience training class. He really was a lucky pup.

However I think if Dembe could talk he would tell you the best bit of Christmas day was sitting on his dads lap having a cuddle.

It was a real Dembe and daddy love in. They couldn’t get enough of each other and it was really lovely to see. Whenever Jay is off work Dembe is glued to his side, yes he is my dog but he adores his dad as well.

Jay and I got a really lovely gift from Imogen, Leanne and Liam. A photograph of all the dogs together.

On Boxing day ( 26th Dec ) Dembe and I were both shattered, we had a very lazy day indeed. I think all the excitement and lead up to Christmas hit us both. We had lots of snuggles on the sofa.

27th December 2019
28th December 2019

The 29th December marked the one year anniversary of Frankie’s passing. It was a tough day, having Dembe made it bearable. It was much harder than either of us anticipated it would be and we knew we would have to do it all over again the following week when it would mark the one year anniversary of Mollie passing.

30th December 2019

Dembe managed to get in one last swim in 2019 up on Woodbury Common on 31st December. Jay didn’t have to coax him in, Dembe dived right in. He is a real water baby, he swims so well.

1st January 2020

The next photo is one of my most favourite ever taken of Dembe

2nd January 2020
2nd January 2020
3rd January 2020

Red Dinosaur a Christmas present from his uncle Paul has been a firm favourite. This gets taken up and down the stairs on a regular basis. He loves carrying it around, when you try to take it from you he runs away. With me he knows all he has to do is run up the stairs and I can’t get him, he then pokes it through the banister! Sometimes he is just too bloody clever for his own good.

4th January 2020

I can’t get over how grown up he looks in this photo. Where has my tiny pup gone? They grow so fast in the space of just a few months. He will always be our baby though no matter how old he is.

Sunday 5th January

I woke up on Sunday night and found him lying in his bed with the fox blanket covering his eyes lying on his back with not a care in the world. Today was hard due to it being the first anniversary of Mollie passing away. We had a very quiet day at home.

Monday 6th January

He still loves nothing more than having a cuddle on my lap.

Tuesday 7th January

We had our first training session of 2020 tonight. Dembe has been bumped up to the advanced class as he is training at a much higher level. He was a little rusty, well Jay was for the first 20 minutes, after that they had a superb training session. He has made a new friend a little white dog think it maybe a Maltese or Bichon crossed with something maybe as it was too big and chunky to be a poodle but had the same curly hair. His new friend is called Rupert and he spent some of the class doing his silly come hither half bark / howls to get his mates attention. Martin has asked us to work together next week as both our dogs are picking stuff up quicker than the other dogs. Dembe was actually watching Rupert to work out what he needed to do. It amazes me how clever he is sometimes. He learned last night that us saying 2 to him also means leave. So we will be working on that this week when we do training sessions each day.

Tuesday 7th also marked the one year anniversary of us meeting Dembe for the very first time.

Wednesday 8th January
Thursday 9th January
Thursday 9th January
Friday 10th January
Saturday 11th January

Saturday 11th January is Dembe’s Happy Gotcha Day! I can’t believe he has been ours for a whole year.

W/C 2nd December 2019

Monday 2nd December

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

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

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

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

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

Tuesday 3rd December

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

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

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

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

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

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

Hi Christmas decoration arrived whilst we were out at Darts Farm

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

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

Wednesday 4th December

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

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

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

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

Thursday 5th December

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

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

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

Today he scoffed his breakfast.

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

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

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

Friday 6th December

Today Dembe’s Emma Bridgewater Tiny Tree Decoration arrived

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

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

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

DD – Dembe’s dad

DM – Dembe’s mum

Saturday 7th December

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

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

Love this outtake
he looks like he is smiling

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

Sunday 8th December

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

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

W/C 11th November 2019

Monday 11th November

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

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

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

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

We have had a day filled with cuddles.

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

Tuesday 12th November

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

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

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

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

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

Wednesday 13th November

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

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

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

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

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

Thursday 14th November

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

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

It has been a day of cuddles and play with Dembe

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

Friday 14th November

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

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

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

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

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

Saturday 16th November

OMG baby boy is 1!

Happy birthday Dembe

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

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

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

This is him now, the handsome devil

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

Sunday 17th November

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

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

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

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

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

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

W/C 4th November 2019

Monday 4th November

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

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

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

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

Tuesday 5th November

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Wednesday 6th November

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

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

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

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

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

Thursday 7th November

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

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

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

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

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

Friday 8th November

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

I had to do some repairs today to crocodile

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

Dembe just wanted cuddles all day

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

Saturday 9th November

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

Dembe had his very first go in the sea today

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

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

Sunday 10th November

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

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

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

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

Dembe absolutely loved the class.

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

W/C 14th October 2019

Monday 14th October

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

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

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

Tuesday 15th October

Jay was day off today.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Wednesday 16th October

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

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

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

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

He was pretty shattered after his adventure this morning.

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

Thursday 16th October

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

Friday 18th October

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

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

Saturday 19th October

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

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

Dembe having a swim

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

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

Sunday 20th October

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

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

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

W/C 16th September 2019

Monday 16th September

As Jay was on a 9-6 , I know what has happened to his early shift on a Monday?? He got Dembe up the common nice and early so he could have a good run before work.

We had our usual lazy morning

Jay didn’t come home at lunchtime due to issues at work but we were ok just pottering around. I managed to get some sewing done in the afternoon whilst Dembe slept.

Dembe went absolutely crazy when I put his car harness on as he knows now that this means daddy is on his way home and a walk is going to follow soon after.

Tuesday 17th September

Bit of a disaster this morning, we had planned to go down the town and have a walk around with Dembe but less than 5 minutes into our trip my mobility scooter packed up. It has been dodgy since I got it up and running in January. Randomly losing power and refusing to move when I had been sat stationary. With going up on the common with it we had been expecting this to happen at some point. Thankfully I managed to limp back to the car but not without it losing power on the middle of a zebra crossing, which was a little hair raising. So we didn’t get to do the training we had wanted to do.

This evening we had dog training class number 2 of obedience training level 2/3. I have no idea why Dembe thinks that the dog training class is the best place to bark. He barks more here than anywhere else. I think he is like a child that likes the acoustics of the old pig barn. As far as he is concerned it is the best place on earth to have a good bark!

He did really well during the lesson, the trainer used Dembe to demonstrate again. It is wonderful to see what Dembe is capable of. He does get bored really easily and lies down on the floor . We had to change his training treats mid lesson as he decided he doesn’t like pepperami anymore. He will eat it if given to him but he would rather work for a different treat the little sod. Luckily I always carry extra treats for circumstances like this! We swapped over bags and he was supercharged after that.

This week we worked on using a toy to maintain focus with his training. This was the first ever week I forgot to pack a bloody toy!

Wednesday 18th September

Dembe and I were both really shattered after a broken nights sleep and dog training last night. We spent the majority of the day curled up on the sofa together having cuddles. Just after 9am my new mobility scooter arrived.

This morning he ate his breakfast with no fuss, however this evening he has been a bit of a pain in the bum. For the first 30 minutes he ignored it. I went into the kitchen and picked up his bowl and this got his interest immediately. So I then started feeding him a piece of kibble at a time. Eating it like that he had no issue. So I then threw a handful on the kitchen floor and he ate that all up. I then went out into the back garden and threw his food onto the patio a handful at a time . We used to play this game with our Weimaraners Mollie, Frankie and Willow. We called it snuffles and they loved it. Dembe’s tail was going crazy as he found all his bits of kibble.

This evening after his dinner he decided to have a mad half hour so we played the find it game. His “wait” command ( what we say instead of stay) is just so good he impresses me all the time. I can now leave the room and he will wait until I tell him I can move. I go and hide a toy and then tell him to “find it” . He loves it and it really tires him out as he is having to use his brain to locate the toy.

Thursday 19th September

I woke up with a terrible migraine at 5am . My little protector wouldn’t leave my side. I was proper poorly with it most of the day and spent the time split between my bed and the sofa. Dembe kept his energy levels low and just stayed beside me.

He is still wanting his food thrown on the floor rather than having it in his bowl. I sat on the garden bench and chucked his food onto the patio for him.

Friday 20th September

Thank goodness I am feeling much more human today.

Dembe ate a few mouthfuls of breakfast from his bowl and then came up to bed with me. We slept until gone 8.20am which is unheard of, When I came downstairs I saw he had hardly eaten his breakfast so I went outside and threw it down onto the patio and he scoffed the lot. He really is strange.

I had to feed him his dinner the same way

We have been having a lazy day as I am still getting over this migraine. So we have had lots of cuddles.

Dembe has managed to destroy the tugger we borrowed from the dog trainer! So we will be buying a replacement Sunday.

I was taking lots of photos of Dembe today. I was trying to get a nice up close photo of him but he decided that it would be the best time to have a look at my phone LOL

We went up to my parents van this evening and Dembe had a play with Maggie. He was running around like an idiot. Maggie didn’t really want to play chase, all she wanted to do was eat the treats I had come over with. When I stop feeding her she barks at me. I am beginning to think that she is a Jack Russell crossed with a Labrador.

When Dembe holds his ears like this we call him Dobby the house Elf from Harry Potter.

Even Dembe gets sick of me taking photos.

Saturday 21st September

Jay was on a late night so he got Dembe up the common for a nice long walk as he would only be having one today.

This pretty much sums up our Saturday as we were both knackered. There were lots of cuddles and lying around on the sofa.

The only time there was lots of activity was when he had his dinner. He went crazy after for about two hours. Throwing his toys around the front room and barking at them when they got stuck under the foot stool or behind the furniture. I went up to bed and he was still chucking stuff around my bedroom. Then all of a sudden he conked out and settled for the night.

Sunday 22nd September

This morning Dembe and I woke up at 6.30am, with the mornings being darker he is sleeping in much later. As it had been raining outside I gave him his breakfast this morning by spreading it around on the lounge and kitchen floor, which went down well. Jay got him out just after 7am and they avoided the rain. Dembe still came home with a wet belly.

At 10.30am we went to see Uncle Paul. Dembe goes crazy when he sees uncle Paul. It is getting a bit embarrassing the way he leaps all over the furniture. Eventually he does calm down but he is like a coiled spring on arriving.

We came home for a bit and then decided to go over to Pets at Home so that I could have a go in my new mobility scooter. We needed to replace the toy that Dembe chewed up, as we had borrowed that from the dog Trainer on Tuesday. He needed a collar to tide him over whilst waiting for the new one to arrive and we had hoped to pick up some of his food. They didn’t have the food but he did end up with two new toys, Broccoli and Carrot.

After all that excitement he fell asleep in the car on the way home and has pretty much slept the rest of the afternoon.

W/C 9th September 2019

Monday 9th September

Today Dembe and I were totally shattered after our busy Sunday. He spent a lot of the day sleeping and I spent a lot of the day being jealous of the fact he was! I felt barely human until gone 2pm.

Dembe had quick bursts of energy during the day which mainly consisted of emptying his toy box all over the lounge floor. He is loving his new antler chews which Jay bought him yesterday and the bear that Julie & Nigel gave him.

Tuesday 10th September

Jay had the day off work today so at around 10.30am we took Dembe to the vets to be weighed. He now weighs 32kg and is 23 inches at the shoulder. The vet staff said he was ok as he has a waist but we need to be careful from now that he doesn’t get overweight. The thing is if anything he is having less of everything he was having before so it was a bit of a shock to find out he now weighed 32kg. Which was the same weight as Willow our Weimaraner who passed in 2017.

We went up to Tesco after the vets to do some more socialisation and environmental training with him. We only popped in for 3 items but it took us 40 minutes to get around such is the size of the Dembe fan club. He got so much love from the staff and customers, who were all brilliant at asking for petting him.

This afternoon we cut his stupidly long dew claw. We had to wait until he was asleep and then practically pin him down as he hates his nails being cut. We have done it regularly since he came home with us but for some reason he has decided the nail cutters are the work of the devil! This was the glare I got afterwards.

Tonight was our first night back at dog training after the summer break. It was good to get back to it. Dembe was good apart from the barking trying to get a Giant Schnauzers attention all evening. He tried to get Suki’s attention all night with a variety of vocal techniques. Thankfully when doing the exercises he was quiet! He did some work with the trainer and refused a biscuit when the trainer offered it to him. Probably because he knew there was better on offer. He was then given a bit of dried liver, which he chewed. To be fair Dembe has always chewed his food but it surprised the trainer who joked he was the first Labrador he had met that chews his food!

Dembe does get bored easily and when he does he lays on the floor refusing to move. Jay now starts dancing in front of him to get him moving as it is something different. Dembe always jumps right up!

Jay is becoming so much more confident training Dembe, the bond between them is just deepening through this which I love. I get to spend every day all day with Dembe so its important Jay has some Dembe love too.

Wednesday 11th September

Dembe and I were both shattered after Tuesday. We had a really lazy day with lots and lots of cuddles on the sofa.

I had spoken to the trainer last night about a few issues I was having with Dembe – grooming being one, he has always hated this from being a puppy. At 8 weeks old a brush on his fur would send him into attack mode. His baby brush is covered in teeth marks. So as advised by the trainer today I started the first of his daily grooming sessions. It went very well, by the end of it I think I may have convinced Dembe that this is a nice thing to do. There was a lot of bribery involved and treats given but my goodness what a lot of hair came off him.

A friend popped over with my raffle prize today. Dembe disgraced himself by lifting up her skirt and then shoving his nose in her crotch. I wanted to die. It is the first time he has done that to anyone and no one was expecting it. This was what Frankie used to do to all my female friends and I would always knew who had their period because his nose wouldn’t leave their crotch the whole time they were here. Thankfully everyone laughed it off as just Frankies thing, some probably actively avoided us that week! I have no clue why Dembe did this but he has also just done this to my mum ( who popped over on Saturday morning). Maybe another thing to speak to the trainer about.

He loves walking around with his antler chew in his mouth looking like a pipe.

Dembe has started being picky with his food. It is taking him an hour to eat his evening meals. There is nothing wrong with him as he is eating treats etc fine and he will sit and beg at the fridge whilst he is supposed to be eating his dinner. In fact he has slowed down so much with his eating that we have switched back to a normal bowl rather than his slow feeder.

Thursday 12th September

Dembe and I are still bloody shattered. I have no clue what is up with us this week. All we both want to do is sleep. Jay is on an early and left the house just after 6am. The next thing I knew it was 8.20am and we were both only just waking up. I could have slept for hours but my back was sore and I had to take my morning meds.

I groomed Dembe again this morning and got even more off him. He sat for me better today and I didn’t have to chase him around the lounge, which is always a bonus!

At lunchtime Jay came home and because the weather was dry we sat outside for a bit and we played ball for a bit with Dembe.

He slept loads this afternoon whilst I did some sewing. I did wonder how on earth I would get to do anything when he first came home with us. He had to be watched like a hawk and always had to be as close to me as possible. Now however he will happily take himself upstairs and sleep on Jays or my bed . He will also sleep in the lounge and ensure he can see me by always being in my eyeline.

He decided to play silly buggers again with his dinner. He sat and begged at the fridge, we left his food down until he finished it and he got nothing extra until his plate was clear. He is just trying it on at the moment.

Friday 13th September

Dembe was an utter pain in the arse overnight, constantly moving around on and off the bed. He went into Jays room at 1.30am after Jay had taken him outside in case he wanted the toilet but all he did was lie down on the grass. He spent the majority of the night with Jay after that. Thankfully we all got some sleep then.

He didn’t wake up for breakfast until 6.30am but again he messed about for well over an hour eating it. He kept walking away from his bowl, begging for food or getting toys out of the toy box.

As Jay was on a late night he took him for a nice long walk up the common this morning. He came back absolutely shattered – shit nights sleep perhaps? He went straight to sleep for a few hours.

My friend Sandra popped over at Midday. Dembe greeted her like an old friend and showed none of the nervousness or fear that he did last week. In fact he covered her in kisses he was that pleased to see her. Sandra stayed for an hour or so and Dembe just wanted her attention the whole time.

Dembe was very good again whilst I did a little bit of sewing. He is such a cuddly boy today. I don’t remember a day where i have been kissed as much by him.

He ate his dinner fine tonight as there was the addition of a tin of sardines in tomato sauce mixed in. He is a cheeky fecker.

Saturday 14th September

Mum and dad popped over this morning as Jay is working 10-7 today so we will both be too knackered to go to the van tonight. Maggie was hilarious running into the house picking up Dembe’s duck and then trying to run back out of the house with it. Dembe as usual got over excited so I had to have him on the lead for a bit as he wanted to do zoomies in the house which I won’t allow as there are too many things he could bang into and injure himself on.

He was shattered after their visit and barely mustered a bark when his dad came home for lunch. As it was nice we sat outside for part of Jays break.

Dembe was really crazy by the time Jay got home from work despite having a walk in the morning. On his walk this morning he was playing with a German Shepherd, his owner asked Jay if his name was from the TV show The Blacklist. When Jay confirmed it was he said ” that is so F**king Cool”. So Jay and I had a proud parent moment as our furry kid has a cool name LOL

Sunday 15th September

Dembe woke up at 6am for his breakfast, he was still a little toad about eating his food. He ate half of it then left it for 90 minutes until after he got back from his walk and was ravenous! He polished it off in one go then.

We promised our friend Becky that we would go to Tesco Honiton today to see her as she was working. She really wanted to meet Dembe. We had a nightmare journey with Google maps taking us on a journey of epic proportions. It was utterly ridiculous as we found ourselves being taken through Ottery St Mary. In all the years I have driven to Honiton ( obviously not the last 6 years as I have had no licence!) I have never ended up going through Ottery St Mary! We totally ignored Google maps on the way home and went the way we knew.

We got to Tesco at around 11am and it was very quiet, which was great for us as obviously this was a new environment for Dembe and he wouldn’t have his usual fan club like he does when we go to his normal branch.

He wasn’t perfect but as he didn’t do a dump in the aisle I will take it as a win. His behaviour was good it is just we have really high expectations forgetting that he isn’t even 10 months old until tomorrow and everyone has off days. His main issue today was continually climbing up onto my lap , well when I say continually it was only about 4 times and I eventually managed to get him to stop.

He was so knackered he slept all the way home and has barely moved since! Quiet day ha ha ha!

Week Commencing 2nd September 2019

Monday 2nd September

Dembe woke us up with a start at 1.55am starting to vomit whilst stood on the bed. He is unfortunately a wanderer when puking and he managed to puke in the upstairs hallway. I managed to get that cleared up and went back to bed only to be woken up again at 2.05am with Dembe smacking his lips and drooling. I tried to get a towel under him but he moved away so I ended up letting him puke into my cupped hands, which would have been fab had he not immediately puked again half way down the stairs and once more in the lounge.

I sat up with him until 2.30am to ensure the puke party had finished, which it had. Typical Labrador though as he went straight to the fridge where he sat and begged for cocktail sausages. Thankfully he did go to bed and settle down straight away.

The good news is he has been vomit free since early this morning. He has been ravenous all day and being doing the most horrendous farts smelly and loud! One was so bad I thought he’d had the shits in the lounge.

He has been a very cuddly boy all day. He has stopped lying on the window ledge as twice last week he got himself caught up in the net curtain and manged to bring the pole down on top of himself. He then ran across the lounge with the curtain over his head and twisted over his body ( twice) so that seems to have put him off for the minute.

He was so excited for his dad coming home tonight that he leapt from one sofa to another without his feet touching the ground.

Tuesday 3rd September

Dembe woke up at 5.30am only because I was up for a wee. Jay got up and gave him his breakfast. He was ( Dembe) a bit of a pain in the arse when he came back up to bed , eventually I gave up at 6.30am and got up.

Jay was already up, so he took Dembe out to the Model Airfield where they met a Vizla , a little girl. They were both up for having a play but unfortunately her owner was in a rush so they didn’t get to play chase. He was so excited when he got back from his walk he draped himself around my neck like a scarf. He looked like he was smiling, Jay and I were in stitches at his antics.

I had physiotherapy at 11.45am so whilst I was there Jay took Dembe over to Four Firs Cross. He met up with an Airedale Terrier called Gary. Gary’s favourite game was also chase so Dembe couldn’t believe his luck. They ran each other ragged. When I got out of Physio Dembe and Jay were in the waiting room. The last time Dembe had been in the waiting room Jay had to take him out as he had whined continuously. This time he was panting but Jay got him to lie down which he did – and no whining. I had no clue they were there

He has been shattered all day after two early walks.

We gave him his weekly treat of Sardines with his dinner as he had burnt off so much energy today.

Wednesday 4th September

Dembe had his first experience of a moth today. As he was eating his breakfast in the kitchen one flew in. He was fascinated , Jay said it was just like Mollie was with moths . He was chasing it all over the kitchen. So Jay had to catch it and release it outside.

We had a very lazy day today. I haven’t been feeling particularly grabs, so we spent the day having cuddles on my heated throw. He loves the heated throw and has spent most of the afternoon draped across my legs.

He is so classy!

When Jay messaged me to say he was on his way home at the end of the day, I went and got Dembe’s car harness from the peg. Dembe ran across the lounge, jumped onto the sofa, in position for me to pop it on. He is a nightmare when Jay tries to put his harness on but for me he is an angel. Once the harness is on though all hell breaks loose as then he goes crazy with excitement and starts leaping from one sofa to another. His feet just don’t touch the floor.

This evening he had his first encounter with a spider- YUCK. He didn’t know what to make of it but he decided he would try to catch it and eat it. The spider scrunched itself up in a ball and lived to fight another day, As soon as it appeared dead DEmbe lost interest.

Thursday 5th September

Thankfully I was feeling a lot better today than I had been over the previous few days. It always amazes me how Dembe tempers his activity levels to how I am feeling. Take yesterday and Monday, I really felt rough . Dembe was content just to spend the day cuddling on the sofa. No constant demand to play with toys or throw a ball. He slept and just wanted me to make a fuss of him. Today I am feeling so much better and he is a crazy loon, charging about like a nutter. Also on the constant scrounge for food!

Everything was going so well until the early afternoon when my back went into spasm and I couldn’t move my arms. Dembe immediately stopped being a nutter and dropped his energy levels right down. For a pup that isn’t even 10 months old yet I think that is pretty incredible. He is such a special boy.

My back eased up late in the afternoon after copious amounts of pain relief. Dembe knew I still wasn’t 100% and rather than reverting to being a loon he just followed me around the house always ensuring I was never alone. As a reward for him behaving so beautifully this week in the evening we had a play on the floor in the lounge.

Friday 6th September

Its FRI-YAY!

Jay was on a late night so he took Dembe out for a walk at around 7am. The little bugger still puts up a fight or just point blank refuses to leave the house or car if he is taken out before 7am. He had a lovely run around Jay threw his rugby ball for him loads as they didn’t meet any dogs on their walk.

Dembe took ages to settle after going out for his walk this morning. He was still on a high grabbing toys out of his toy box and making a mess until 10.30am when he finally had some sleep.

Our friend Sandra popped over at midday. Dembe hasn’t seen Auntie Sandra for months due to holidays, a broken lag and an operation. She has had a really rough summer. Dembe is being quite funny with strangers or people he hasn’t seen for a little while, so he got all shy and hid behind my legs. He is definitely in a different brain development period. Dembe was fine once I gave Sandra some cocktail sausages to feed him.

After Sandra left Dembe went to sleep for the rest of the afternoon, which allowed me to crack on with some bits that I wanted to get out of the way.

He didn’t pine for Jay tonight thank goodness but just settled down and went to sleep. The last few times Jay has been on a late night he has sat downstairs by the front door waiting for him to get home.

Saturday 7th September

DEmbe was up at 5.10am for breakfast and Jay decided to stay up. As they were both up so early Jay took Dembe out at 7am to the Model airfield. Poor DEmbe was bullies by three Westies who were refusing to let him pass under the bar gate. Dembe didn’t know what to do as he had never come across some grumpy dogs before. The Westies owners moved them out of the way and told them off for being so bossy to a young pup.

The spider I thought Dembe had possibly eaten the other night made another appearance, either that or it was his twin brother. Dembe tried to eat it again, the spider was too quick and escaped. I helped it on its way.

My dad popped in at lunch time as he was dropping over a pair of pliers to me and picking up my mums birthday present. Dembe gets really over excited when he see’s my dad. I have no clue why. Jay was also here having lunch. After there visit we had a sit down as I wasn’t feeling very well I could tell my blood pressure was low. Dembe just settled right down, whilst I recovered.

I felt a bit better after some fluids and my medication so I cracked on with getting my prototype bags finished. Jay messaged me as he was leaving work and I got Dembe’s harness on. He went a bit crazy as he was so looking forward to his walk and daddy coming home.

Sunday 8th September

I woke up due to Dembe staring at me, it was 5.10am and he obviously wanted his breakfast. He had his scram and then came back up to bed. We then slept until 7am. When Dembe decided we all needed to get up as he wanted a walk. Jay had a coffee first and then took him to Woodbury Castle where he met his girlfriends the Bulldogs Milly and Mandy. Their owners were really shocked with how much Dembe has grown since they last saw him. They had a good game of kiss chase with the girls stealing his ball as always.

This morning we took Dembe over to Pets at Home and with us then to Tesco whilst me and Jay upgraded our mobile phones. He was a bit naughty in pets at home nothing major. At Tesco before we went in we put his yellow coat on to identify he is an assistance dog in training and he was an absolute angel. Its like he knows when that coat is on he has to behave. He was brilliant we were there for about an hour and he just lay on the floor or sat down. He did bark a couple of times – he really doesn’t like people staring at him! But there was no messing about, crying or just being a pain in the bum. We were both extremely proud of him.

W/C 29th July 2019

Monday 29th July

We have had a quiet day today, Jay was on an early as usual for Monday. I spent a lot of the day wrestling a pair of curtains. It started off as a small job and just got bigger and bigger. Poor Dembe had to entertain himself for a lot of the day. When I am sewing he either goes out in the gazebo or lies on his bed in the kitchen. Occasionally he will lie on the sofa in the lounge.

Jay came home for lunch and spent ages cuddling Dembe. Dembe loves his daddy coming home part way through the day and goes crazy for a bit. He usually runs and get whatever toy is flavour of the week and brings it in for you to see. At the moment it is his huge football from the garden.

Dembe’s new bed came yesterday and he is loving it. It is huge and if he lies on his side he fits inside the bed still rather than hanging over the edge and being arse end in the bed head end on the floor.

He is really enjoying his yak chews which for some reason have to be eaten messily in my bedroom which is why there are no photos of his new bed as the bloody Yak chew bits go everywhere. Poor Jay has had to hoover to my bedroom carpet everyday this week.

As you can see from Dembe’s he wasn’t impressed the curtain took so long for mum to fix ( had to remove a damaged section and alter the length )

As I am pleased with the job I did with the curtains I thought I would share, it is the first time I have tackled curtains. So despite Dembe being pissed off with me it was a productive day!

Tuesday 30th July

Dembe woke me up at 6.30am, the minute I was downstairs he started his campaign to get his dad out of bed. Jay sent me these photos he took of Dembe.

He did sleep for a bit and then decided he was bored with that and licked Jays head and face to ensure he was awake!

He got Dembe out early as it was obvious that he needed and wanted a good run around. He took him up to the model airfield and ran into a German Shepard called Rhea who was in our Obedience Training Class. They were really lucky as they managed to stay dry on the walk. It was only when they got home the heavens opened and it seemed to pour down for the rest of the day. Never seen rain like it.

I had physio at 11.45am so Jay took Dembe up the common again for a walk and explore. It was raining a little by the time they got back to the car but again they had been really lucky with the weather.

Having two walks close together wiped Dembe out.

Wednesday 31st July

Jay was late night so he took Dembe out for a nice early walk, despite this he was pretty manic all morning throwing crocodile around the lounge.

In the afternoon I put my quilt top together – I have been working on a scrap busting quilt for the last couple of weeks. Dembe went out in the gazebo onto the bench to keep an eye on me.

He likes sleeping there when I am working in the kitchen as he can see me whenever he opens his eyes and he can hear when I move. He has done this ever since he was big enough to climb up there.

When I finished sewing the quilt top together I managed to nip out between the showers and get a photo of it hanging on the washing line. Dembe “Lab” tested it!

Thursday 1st August

Can you believe it is August already?? how did that happen?

This morning Dembe and I looked after Maggie my parents dog whilst they went out shopping. Initially Dembe was massively over excited, I think it is only about the 4th time there has been another dog in the house. Plus Maggie is his zoomie mate from the caravan so he thought they would be running about the house. Not a chance mate!

In Dembe’s excitement he managed to tip up the water bowl I had put on the floor for Maggie to drink from as Dembe now uses the Weims old raised water bowl as he prefers it. It is amazing how far such a small amount of water can travel.

Eventually they both did settle

Maggie beside me on the sofa
Dembe trying to get up on my lap

As you can see from his face he is still at the over excited phase. He has also been outside playing in his paddling pool.

Finally clam at last!
Maggie asleep one side of me
Dembe asleep the other side of me

The last two photos show when they went to sleep one either side of me. It was quite weird having two dogs in the house after having just one since January 11th. Instead of one set of doggie footsteps following me everywhere there were two. And Maggie has an even worse concept of personal space than Dembe.

When my parents came back to collect Maggie, Dembe thought it would be a good idea to jump up on the sofa between them and try to lick my mums ear. It was hilarious hearing her squeal moving her head away. The more she squealed the more Dembe’s tail wagged. You could hear it thump against the sofa. I can’t get over how thick Dembe’s tail is. He likes sleeping with his tail draped over my eyes, so I have a kind of doggy eye mask.

Unfortunately on Thursday I had woken up with a bit of a headache as my neck was out of alignment. As the day progressed the pain just got worse and worse to the point where I just wanted to puke. I ended up going to bed in the afternoon, Dembe came with me and slept on my shoulder as he tends to do when I am not feeling well. He doesn’t move for hours. It is oddly comforting feeling him breathing and resting his head against me like this.

He is such an affectionate boy and very in tune with both Jay and I.

knackered after Maggie’s visit

He was desperate for Jay to come home this evening. From around 5pm he was pacing waiting for him but it was a long wait as Jay didn’t finish until 7pm. Dembe was waiting at the window for him.

Friday 2nd August

Dembe is 38 weeks old today and I can’t believe how big he is getting. Saying that he is still wee compared to the Weimaraners. His head shape is still to change to look like a proper grown up Labrador. He is such an affectionate dog, I can’t leave the room without him following me bless him.

He has got much better at leaving me alone when I am doing my physiotherapy exercises / pilates. When he was a tiny pup lying down was an invitation to be used as a climbing frame. He now understands to leave me alone until I am finished although he likes to keep a watchful eye on me still.

He was shattered today after all the excitement of having his mate Maggie here yesterday.

It was such a lovely day weather wise today so we spent quite a bit of the afternoon playing outside with the paddling pool and with some bubbles.

It was quite difficult to film / take photos whilst blowing bubbles!

He had a wonderful time playing outside.

Saturday 3rd July

He has been equally sleepy and bouncy today. As you can see the leather football is in the house again! Brought to show me what a clever boy he is. Cuddles a plenty.

Uncle Paul came over this afternoon to dig a hole to put our very pot bound Yucca in the ground. Dembe loves his Uncle Paul and always goes crazy when he see’s him. He tried to jump on Paul’s lap. He was very interested in what Paul was doing.

What a cracking job Paul did, I just hope Dembe leaves it alone whilst it gets used to spreading its roots now after 15 years in a plant pot. It was about 12 inches tall when I bought it and its the only plant that I have managed to keep alive in all that time.

I found out something really cute this week on social media. The white patches that Dembe has on his shoulder blades are referred to as Angel Wings. Isn’t that just the sweetest thing. Here is a good shot of them

The angel wing marking is really common in the reddish yellow Labradors. Until we had Dembe I was under the impression that Labradors were uniform in colour. However Dembe has shown me that isn’t the case, he has a white blaze on his chest, his chest / belly are really light blonde. He has patches of blonde hair with darker fox red patches. As he has got older he has got darker.

Sunday 4th July

After removing a great deal of earth from the garden to plant the Yucca, Jay had to do something with it. So we decided he could use it to level out the left hand side of the garden. Unfortunately Dembe decided to be a pain in the bum and continually get involved in what Jay was doing so I was deployed to distract him.

Quite often Dembe will walk at=round the house with two toys or two balls in his mouth this is the first time I have been able to photograph him doing it. After being a bugger he has come inside and gone straight to sleep beside me on the sofa!

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.