W/C 13th January 2020

Monday 13th Janaury

Jay is on an uber early this morning but this means he will be home shortly after 2pm . Dembe hasn’t had a walk this morning due to this. He will have a long walk once Jay finishes work.

At Jays normal lunch time Dembe started waiting by the window ready for his daddys return. He couldn’t work out why he was late and stayed there for ages. Luckily he didn’t really have long to wait.

As Dembe is such a messy eater in the morning I quickly made him a washable and wipe clean quilted mat that was personalised with his name on. I bought the fabric before Christmas and then realised it wasn’t going to be any good for what I wanted it for so it has lain in my stash since then.

He is really enjoying the food I have started making him. Yesterday I made him Scoobys Stew, you can get the recipe here – http://happyandyummy.com/scoobys-stew-dogs/ . He really loves it and has been licking his bowl clean and eating in a way we have never seen him do before.

He is looking so grown up these days. I managed to get this lovely shot of him this evening

Tuesday 14th January

Jay is on another early but this is a normal one hank goodness. Dembe got a walk up the common before Jay left for work, the weather is absolutely terrible. He is still eating really well, he dances around as I get the Scooby Stew ready for him to eat. I can’t help myself every time I put his mat down I have to say to him “table for one sir” – sad I know.

He is looking really red at the moment. He seems to have got a lot darker during the winter months which we thought may happen. I expect he will get very blonde again in the summer.

Tonight we have dog training and I know it isn’t going to be Dembes night as he has been playing up all day. With Jay working he hasn’t had his usual 3 walks before we go ( 2 long and one short) so he is full of beans and up for mischief. My prediction was right as he spent the lesson gobbing off barking at everyone and everything. He did behave better after 20 minutes in and was doing really well. It is just embaressing to have the one dog in class that barks. He barks with excitement, he barks because he is bored, he barks because he is frustrated, he barks just because! And now at home he is adding in the odd howl at dogs on the TV . He is a little bugger.

He did have everyone in stitches this evening when during a break he decided to jump on my lap for a cuddle. He loves being on my lap at home on the sofa but on a plastic chair its not as comfortable for me LOL!

Jay bought a load of ingredients for making his food tonight when he finished work. So I shall be knocking those up this week.

Wednesday 15th January 2020

I cooked up a storm today in the kitchen making Dembe the Wonderful One pot and Meat loaf recipes from the book by the lady who started the dog food company Lily’s Kitchen. I made the porridge last night for Dembe and he had that first thing. I dont think he is too sure about it even though he has eaten it. I will be watching this week for a refusal which I do think will come.

He was very interested when I was making the meatloaf and was dancing around the kitchen when the chicken livers came out and were processed. Its a good job I am making it for him as I nearly hurled. I would never touch this stuff if it was for Jamie.

We were both shattered after our time in the kitchen and we spent the rest of the day putting our feet up and watching the telly.

The bowl was licked clean after his wonderful one pot for dinner!

Thursday 16th January

Dembe is 14 months old today. It has gone by so quickly, he is turning into such a lovely boy although like all kids he has his moments!

Jay was late night so he took him out for a nice long walk on the common. They bumped into lots of dogs so Dembe had a really lovely time chasing and playing around with everyone. He didn’t sleep all morning so I knew I was going to be in for a quiet afternoon.

Dembe kept me company whilst I was sewing by lying on the kitchen floor. Something he hasn’t done since he was a tiny pup. Normally he lies on the big sofa in the lounge and watches me from there whilst trying not to doze off.

We had high winds on today so I did wonder if all the noises outside were bothering him and that’s why he wanted to be so close to me. Due to the trapped nerve in my neck I only managed to sew for a short time before I had to stop. So I retreated into the lounge and sat with a hot water bottle on my shoulder whilst doing some crochet. I wanted to see how large the square was that I was making ( it needed to be 1 metre square) so I laid it out on the floor. Within seconds this happened

Every time I lay my work down he lies on top of it.

He was very good this evening settling down upstairs with me, although he kept an ear out for his dads return and as soon as he heard him on the drive he barked and ran downstairs to greet him.

Friday 17th January

Jay was on a 9-6 today so Jay got him out before he want to work. He made sure he gave him a long walk as my hair dresser was coming over today to sort my hair out for me. So we needed him to have lower energy levels. He was very well behaved, mainly due to the fact he was given a bulls tail to chew on and some lamb tripe. When he had finished those he kept coming in with different toys to see if he could entice us into playing with him! He did on a couple of occasions attempt to get on my lap.

Jay brought home a friend from work at lunchtime so Dembe was really pleased as this was someone else to adore him! He did all the tricks that Jay got him to do. Although he was a bit too keen to try Rachael’s lunch that she had brought with her.

By the time everyone had left both me and the boy were exhausted so we spent the afternoon lounging on the sofa.

Saturday 18th January

As expected we had our first meal refusal today, it was the savoury porridge and I had my suspicions that he wasn’t 100% sold on this recipe. As soon as it became clear that he wan’t going to eat this we emptied his bowl, got him a new bowl and gave him stuff that we knew he would eat, the wonderful one pot recipe. He ate that with zero complaints.

Jay has the weekend off after working 5 straight days so Dembe is very happy having both of us home.

We have been playing lots of games today and working on leave for both his agility training class and his obedience training.

Dembe is always happiest when his pack is all together.

Sunday 19th January

Dembe had a nice long walk on the common this morning. It was very cold out minus 2, which thankfully meant he wasn’t very dirty after his walk. Today we have agility training for non- beginners, which starts at 13.40. We have had a lazy morning catching up on some Tv programmes whilst Dembe has had cuddles and slept.

Dembe and Jay had a really good session and he is really now starting to get the hang of the weave poles. He did well on the wobble board and went on that no problem at all so we will try and build that up so that we can get his confidence up so that he can get on the seesaw which he still avoids.

Dembe came home and crashed, fast asleep curled up beside his daddy.

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 9th December 2019

Monday 9th December

Jay was in uber early this morning so with Dembe having disturbed sleep we managed a little lie on until 7.30am. Very decadent.

I thought he maybe hungry after not eating his dinner last night but he ate less than a 3rd of his breakfast and it was painfully slow. The stupid thing is if I add a raw egg or a tin of fish he scoffs the lot. I decided to leave his food down all day to see if maybe he is more of a grazer but that didn’t work either. By dinner time there was still loads left in his bowl. I gave up and added a tin of mackerel to his meal and he scoffed the lot.

Jay weighed him this evening as we really didn’t know what his weight was doing as every time we have thought he had lost weight he had gained weight. However you can see the bottom rib and feel his rib cage much more along with his spine. The last time we weighed him he came in at a whopping 33.1kg. The good news is that he weighs 30.8kg so he has lost 2.3kg. It is the lowest weight he has been for some time. He is now pretty close to the weight the vet wanted which was 30kg. I would like him under 30kg but I am thrilled that we have got his weight down.

Dembe waiting for his dad to come home on Monday afternoon.

Tuesday 10th December

Jay is day off today. Last night like the night before Dembe started the evening in Jays room. Jay got woken up by a blood curdling howl. I have been telling Jay for months that Dembe barks and howls in his sleep but as he has never heard it I don’t think he has ever quite believed me. At 11.30pm Dembe moved into his bed and at 2.30am he moved from his bed onto my bed where he spent the rest of the night / morning until we got up. The temperature really dropped overnight.

Jay and I wrapped all the Christmas presents this morning. Dembe was very good and didn’t attempt to insert himself into the proceedings. He also managed to resist the urge to shred any paper he came across on the floor. Paper / card shredding is one of his most favourite things to do. When you are a sewist that’s not good as it means if I drop a paper pattern I have to rescue it immediately! He did get a bit stroppy that no one would throw his ball for him.

It was raining this afternoon when Jay took Dembe out for his walk. We had to hose him off in the back garden as Dembe’s legs were covered in mud / grit from the common. He has got an awful lot better with being dried with the hairdryer.

I added an egg to his dinner and it was hoovered up. So for the next few days I will try adding an egg to his meals whilst reducing his kibble slightly.

Tonight is his last obedience training session, we have signed up to the course being run after Christmas along with agility.

We were the only ones at dog training tonight as the other lady that attends with us was poorly. We had the entire hour as a one to one, which was fantastic and a great way to end the term. Dembe managed to embarrass us by having a wee on the floor. He has started scent marking, we always walk him before a training session so that he doesn’t need the toilet whilst there. I wanted the floor to open up as he has never done that. Martin explained that sometimes they get confused and see the barn as outdoors. I hope so as I dont need this issue.

We got our certificate for passing level 2

Wednesday 11th December

I got Dembe to eat his breakfast today with zero issues thanks to the edition of an egg. No constant encouragement or cheer-leading needed whilst he ate his breakfast which meant it was much less stressful.

Dembe was a very cuddly boy all day and just wanted to be beside me on the sofa all day.

I have been having a break from sewing so have been doing crochet instead. He has been glued to my side.

We did some find it and leave/take exercises this afternoon when he had a bit of energy to burn off. He really loves playing this game in the evenings with us or just me.

Can’t believe how much better he is eating now that we have added the egg to his meals.

Dembe has a really weird way of sleeping in his bed. When he gets into it at night he clears all the blankets / cushions out of it and sleeps on the base which is the thickness of a sheet and uses the blanket and cushion as a pillow.

Thursday 12th December

Jay is on a late night tonight so Dembe had a really long walk up the common this morning. As it was raining we put his blue coat on him. He came back with his legs and belly all covered in mud and had to be hosed off outside again!

I have been really tired all week due to not sleeping, my disturbed sleep has also impacted Dembe so he has been really sleepy during the day.

We had a game of find it this evening as he got a bit of an energy rush and I wanted to clam him down before bed. He loves playing find it so that’s what we did. He is so good at stay when in the house with me. I can leave the room and he doesn’t move. He isn’t always great at finding stuff but he does love to give it a good go.

When we did go to bed Dembe was obsessed with my feet. He wouldn’t stop licking them and nibbling my toes which would have been fine should I not hate having my feet touched by anyone. I really loathe it. In the end I had to shove them under the duvet to get him to leave them alone.

I tried to do some crochet in bed but he was having none of it and kept climbing on my lap.

Eventually he did go to sleep and I managed to get this photo of him

Friday 13th December

I managed to not sleep a wink last night and as a result feel dreadful today. All I am doing is lying on the sofa.

Saturday 14th December

I managed to sleep last night but as a result I now feel worse than ever.

Paul popped over at 9.30am and I was still in my pj’s waiting to wake up a bit. Thankfully Dembe was nice and calm and managed to behave rather than bouncing off the walls like he normally would.

Jay got this brilliant photo of him at lunchtime

Dembe was very excited when Paul popped back in the afternoon and was just desperate for us to play but we were trying to sort out Paul’s new computer. He wasn’t the worst he has ever been but it was clear Dembe was really looking forward to having a walk when his dad got home.

Sunday 15th December

Today marks the 2 year anniversary of our Weimaraner Willow passing away. It is a sad day.

We had to pop down to our relatives today, who live an hours drive away, to take all the Christmas presents to them. I stayed with my parents and their dog Maggie with Dembe whilst Jay went to visit his parents. Dembe was just manic and managed to embarrass himself by having a wee on the floor – scenting again. I wouldn’t have minded but he had a long walk this morning, he was walked around the block before we set off so he could go to the toilet. He was then walked again when we arrived at my parents house so that he could go to the toilet and not do this……..and he bloody did.

When he did it on Tuesday Martin said it was about scenting not actually going to the toilet. I was mortified then and even more so at my parents house today. He is a year old and shouldn’t be doing this. Especially with so many trips out to ensure that he had a wee.

This maybe something we need to talk to him about when we go back to class in 2020 – which seems like a year away but is only actually just a few weeks.

Since we got back home Dembe has slept. I am pretty shattered as I just haven’t been right at all this week.

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 18th November 2019

Monday 18th November

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

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

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

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

Tuesday 19th November

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Wednesday 20th November

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

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

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

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

He had the remainder of his dinner at 10.30pm.

Thursday 21st November

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

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

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

Friday 22nd November

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

Saturday 23rd November

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

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

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

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

Sunday 24th November

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

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

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

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

It has been a very quiet Sunday.

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 21st October 2019

Monday 21st October

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

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

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

Tuesday 22nd October

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

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

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

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

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

Wednesday 23rd October

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Thursday 24th October

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

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

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

Friday 25th October

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

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

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

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

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

Saturday 26th October

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

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

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

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

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

Sunday 27th October

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

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

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

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

W/C 14th October 2019

Monday 14th October

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

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

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

Tuesday 15th October

Jay was day off today.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Wednesday 16th October

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

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

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

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

He was pretty shattered after his adventure this morning.

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

Thursday 16th October

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

Friday 18th October

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

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

Saturday 19th October

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

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

Dembe having a swim

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

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

Sunday 20th October

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

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

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

W/C 7th October 2019

Monday 7th October

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

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

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

Tuesday 8th October

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Wednesday 9th October

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

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

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

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

Thursday 10th October

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Friday 11th October

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

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

I just love his expressive eyebrow in this photo.

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

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

Saturday 12th October

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

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

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

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

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

Sunday 13th October

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