W/C 6th July 2020

Monday 6th July

I spent much of yesterday in bed and Dembe was by my side for the majority of it. Whilst I was watching a show on Netflix Heartlands , Dembe was fascinated by the horses

Ignore the state of my room I had been too unwell to tidy it up

He goes crazy every time there are horses on the television. Which as Heatland is all about a horse ranch in Canada – is quite a bit.

We had a very lazy day on Monday , I lay on the sofa a lot and Dembe shared it with me

Dembe also likes lying my chest, he weighs about the same as our Weimaraner Willow who passed away in December 2017. But I would never have managed her lying on my chest. His weight is distributed differently and he seems longer in the body than she was. He is ok until he moves and digs me with his bony elbows.

I’ve taken this photo from later in the week.

As I spent a lot of Monday lying down Dembe kept bringing me toys to see if they would make me feel better. He even brought me his favourite ball.

Tuesday 7th July

Dembe was the life and soul of the party all day

We were a bit concerned that due to the fact he had slept most of the day he was going to be a live wire at dog training this evening. Jay and I were really looking forward to getting back to training and some kind of normality.

I had to spend most of the day flat due to my CSF leak cropping up again, which meant a lot of the time sharing a sofa with Dembe.

Tonight’s dog training session would be the first time since before the lock-down we had been to class. Our last class had been 17th March. I was wondering how much of his training Dembe would remember. I needn’t have worried as Dembe and Jay had a cracking session.

Jay was singled out towards the end of the session to say how well he and Dembe were doing and that now they both needed to be working to a much more advanced level.

Due to Covid-19 each person and dog had a set area in the barn to work in, marked out with tape on the floor. On attending we had to wait outside – socially distanced and then wait to be called in. We then had to sanitise our hands and confirm that we were not suffering any covid-19 symptoms. We also had to confirm all our details were correct and up to date.

Dembe’s mate Rufus was there so they spent ages looking at each other. At one point Dembe was losing focus so Jay brought out his training toy the purple Rhino that Kate from the vets had bought him when we first got him. I will never forget that day. We were both really stressed as it had just been over a week since Mollie had passed away there and two weeks since Frankie. So the place was filled with very unhappy memories for us both. Plus we were worried people were judging us for getting another dog so soon. Kate came out from behind the desk and gave us a hug ( back in the days when you could do that) she had a card welcoming Dembe to his new home and had bought him a toy his purple rhino. We use it as his training toy so it only comes out at the barn. All the other dogs were so jealous of Dembe’s toy that they started barking at him so everyone else had to get a toy out for their dogs.

Dembe did so well at training, he was shattered when he got home and went straight out into the garden and lay down

Wednesday 8th July

Dembe didn’t wake up until gone 5.30am . We were both expecting it to be earlier as he drank so much during dog training last night. He spent the night snuggled up to me as I came down with a migraine at 11pm last night.

He has been very barky today so I have implemented a new noise to put him off. So far so good.

Jay came home for lunch so I managed to get some fab photos

He is being a real fussy bugger with his food. It is looking like we won’t bother with raw food again, most of the time I have to sit there with him whilst he is eating it. The only flavour he really liked was duck and it looks like he is allergic to duck as his ears all became inflamed. Even if he is looking really interested as you prepare the raw food the minute it is put in his bowl he doesn’t want it.

Thursday 9th July

Jay has been doing a lot of 9-6 shifts lately and both Dembe and I hate them. The morning goes quickly and then he is home for lunch and then the afternoon really drags.

Dembe waits for Jay from 4pm some days, either standing at the window barking at everyone who dares pass by or by lying on the sofa by the front door looking thoroughly pissed off.

Friday 10th July

Dembe has a walk with Martin from Happy Dogs later on today as Jay is on a late night today.

Jay has him out nice and early this morning for a long walk. They say Pluto the Great Dane in The distance but didnt manage to catch up with him. Dembe was on the go all morning.

As Jay was on a late night he took Dembe for a spin around the block before going to work. Dembe likes his lead walks at midday / lunch time. He has them when Jay comes home at lunch time and looks forward to them. The walk now will tide him over until he goes out with Martin later on this afternoon.

Dembe is being a right barky little sod at the moment. I have no idea why he has suddenly decided this week that every noise needs a response. He is also barking at me when I refuse to play a game with him because I am busy doing other things. It is ridiculous.

He worked out that it was a Martin / Happy dogs walk today so was waiting by the window for him to arrive.

He had a wonderful time on his walk. If you are on Facebook you can use this link to see him out on his walk and lots of other videos from Happy dogs https://www.facebook.com/happydogs.uk/.

It has made such a difference Dembe having a long walk on the days when Jay is working a late night. He settles so much quicker and is happier for having been out properly rather than a quick walk around the block when Jay gets in late.

Saturday 11th July

I managed to have a nasty fall in the garden today. I have hurt all my left side. As soon as I fell Dembe came rushing out to check how I am and kissed me. He wouldn’t let me get up until he felt it was safe for me to do so. This isn’t something we have trained him to do but something he just does.

As I had fallen and was sore I spent a lot of the day on the sofa

He decided the best place to keep an eye on me was under my elevated leg!

His new toy arrived this afternoon – Grumpy Cat

He seems very taken with it as he took it outside and tore the labels off!

Sunday 12th July

He seems to be loving his new toy Grumpy cat.

Today is going to be a lazy Sunday as I am aching head to toe after my fall yesterday.

Another battle getting him to eat his breakfast today. However as soon as I changed it over to one of our pasta bowls he ate no problem. So now I am left wondering is it the bowl and not the food that is the issue. I will now feed from the pasta bowl to see if that helps at meal times.

W/C 1st June 2020

Monday 1st June

Dembe has been a really good boy today whilst Jay ( with a bit of help from me) did some DIY jobs around the house. He was so cute every time we bent down to pick something up he would come running and then kiss us. He is such an affectionate little lambchop.

The weather has been really hot, so when Jay took Dembe up the common he thought he would take him for a swim. Dembe raced ahead and it wasn’t until Jay caught up with him that he realised that all the water had evaporated and Dembe was having a terrific time rolling around n the mud. I had a phone call from Jay to let me know that towels and dog shampoo would be needed!

He was such a good boy as we shampooed him and then hosed him off in the garden. He loved laying outside in the sunshine whilst he dried off.

Jay is on holiday this week so Dembe is loving all the extra daddy & Dembe time.

Tuesday 2nd June

Dembe started crying at 4.39am and I was not impressed. 5am is bad enough every morning but just after 4.30am is taking the piss! I rolled over and ignored him, he slept for a bit and then went and got his daddy up at 5am.

Dembe is very unsettled this morning Jay has gone to visit his parents who he hasn’t seen since December. It took 90 minutes before he finally collapsed and went to sleep.

He was so excited when Jay got home, running around grabbing toys and dropping them at Jays feet. He always brings Jay a gift every time he returns home be it from work or just out of the house.

It was very close all day Tuesday, I was struggling with the heat as was Dembe. He flaked out in the evening and lay asleep on the rug.

Wednesday 3rd June

Dembe saw Martin the dog trainer today, as Martin was collecting a pallet that we were getting rid of. Dembe’s tail was going mad and he was barking to get Martins attention. They haven’t seen each other since March. We are all desperate to get back to our training sessions.

I tried to take a selfie with the boy but he was refusing to co-operate !

He was toy obsessed today constantly bringing us toys. His puppy that he chose at the indoor market last year has been a firm favourite this week.

Tonight Dembe settled in with me for the night after spending last night with his dad.

Thursday 4th June

Dembe has been in a funny mood all day, obsessed with finding all his toys that he has managed to push under the sofa. He cried for 30 minutes straight until Jay moved the small sofa and behind it we found his half chewed bulls tail. Then after he ate that he cried again at the small sofa and beside it we found his small pink teething ring that he hasn’t played with in ages and has had since he was 8 weeks old.

He then wanted to play with it all day long

Dembe has also started another little thing this week of stealing my slippers when I am on the sewing machine. Today he stole both my slippers, one was in the garden and one was in the bathroom when I went to put them on!

Dembe’s favourite game with Jay is what we call nudge. Dembe and Jay knock a ball backwards and forwards to each other. Dembe will play this for ages and will only play it with Jay. So we have had countless games of nudge this week whilst Jay has been off.

Friday 5th June

A year ago today we started our obedience training lessons.

I will be honest if we hadn’t paid for the course we would have never have gone back after that night. ( nothing to do with Happy Dogs)

Dembe was 7 months old and was the worst behaved pup there. Basically he looked like he had snorted a line of coke and then took some speed to liven things up a little. He continually barked at all the dogs wanting to play. Looked like a yo-yo as he bounced off the end of the lead. He was an absolute nightmare, Jamie and I were mortified as he wasnt the dog we knew and loved.

If I had been grading the lesson I would have given us a 0/10 . And not a hope in hell of ever improving.

We took on Martin’s advice , we practiced what we had learned every day. I practiced multiple times a day getting the figure of 8 lead on and off him so he would be used to it by the following week and we ditched the harness.

I was dreading week 2 just in case he was even worse but he surprised us all and paid us back in spades by being an absolute angel and I dont think anyone could believe the difference in him.

Dog training isnt a once a week thing, it’s every day multiple times a day. It is a commitment, you get out of your dog what you put in. You wouldnt expect to learn French doing one hour a week, so it annoys me when people think you only need to do the training exercises for the duration of the class.

I wouldn’t be without Dembe and I cant thank Happy Dogs enough for all their help and support

If you want to read about our first night at dog training you can find it here https://thedembediaries.com/2019/06/10/w-c-3rd-june-2019/

As my back was really bad I went up to bed early. Jay sent me some photo’s via messenger to make me laugh as Dembe was making a silly face and sleeping in a strange position!

Saturday 6th June

As my back is bad I am having a quite day. Dembe seems to be enjoying that.

He was less impressed though as I started to write this week’s blog entry copying it over from the hard copy I keep

After Sprout had been lobbed at me for possibly the 4th or 5th time I asked Jay to play with Dembe whilst I carried on with the blog post. They played on the floor together for around an hour and then played nudge for 30 minutes. Dembe is sound asleep now after that manic 90 minutes.

Tomorrow his uncle Paul will see him for the first time since March. We are socially distancing having a coffee in the back garden. Dembe has always adored Paul so I think he is going to go cray cray!

Jay got sent to pets at home with a list today. Im pretty sure the list didn’t contain the words new toy or elephant!

Sunday 6th June

Dembe got up early with me which is a rarity as normally he likes staying upstairs with his dad. He settled down beside me and went straight to sleep.

As predicted Dembe went crazy when Paul arrived and was basically throwing himself at Paul. He has missed him as much as we have. He has known Paul since he was tiny and out of all our friends he is probably the one person that he see’s on the most regular basis so not to have seen him since March is the longest time ever. I’m always amazed how dogs remember people.

W/C 3rd February 2020

Monday 3rd February

Today has been a very lazy day. Jay was on an early so he took Dembe out up the common before going to work.

We had lots of cuddles on the sofa and we played find it, with find it bunny.

I caught him looking out the window waiting for his dad to get home at lunch time. As soon as he hears my message ping on my phone to let me know that Jay is on his way home he will get up on the sofa and stand guard. Some days he is up there before I get a message.

As soon as he see’s his dad reverse onto the drive he will either go to the door or he will run to his toy box and get a toy to greet his dad with. The retriever part is strong in him, he loves to walk around with a toy in his mouth. At the moment he likes carrying around his pheasant toy. This changes from day to day which toy he is favouring.

He was full of beans this evening before Jay got in. He waits by the door lying on the sofa arm.

When Jay gets home from work he doesn’t get a toy brought to him as Dembe knows he will be going out for a walk!

Tuesday 4th February

Jay is day off today.

Dembe is really barky and a bit crazy today so I am dreading dog training this evening as if he is barking and naughty at home it usually continues in class the little sod.

Dembe did really well did exceptionally well at obedience class this evening . He got got picked out of the group to show off his recall skills. Martin the trainer took Dembe down the other end of the barn and got Jay to call Dembe back when Dembe wasn’t expecting it. He went off down the barn like a rocket. I don’t think I have ever seen him move so quickly. They then repeated it doing a front present. Dembe veered off course and came over to me so I ignored him, Jay called him again and he shot off back to Jay. He did the front present beautifully.

Wednesday 5th February

Dembe started at 6am to try and get me up but I managed to keep him occupied until 6.50am. Jay got him out at by 7.30am. Jay said he was going crazy on the walk running around like a loon.

Dembe slept quite a bit during the day as he was knackered from his walk and dog training last night. He sprang into action at 5am demanding his toys to be thrown for him.

Thankfully I kept him entertained and managed to wear him out. He did settle down quickly when we went up to bed . Jay took him out around the block when he got in from work and Dembe did lots of big boy wee’s. So proud of him.

Thursday 6th February

Dembe is eating loads at the moment and I am not surprised as it is supposed to be turning colder in the next few days.

We had a slow start to the morning as I had woken up with a migraine and was feeling quite out of it for a while. Dembe was quite happy to lie beside me on the sofa sleeping bless him.

I find it quite crazy when I compare his photos from last year to the ones I have here as he was tiny this time last year and now he looks so grown up. But he will always be our baby,

At 5.30pm I had a doctors appointment so Jay dropped me there and then he and Dembe headed to the beach walking through the town to get there. It was a really good training session for him, by the time he worked out he was going to the beach he was beside himself with excitement. He was desperate to get onto the sand and as Jay took him down the steps he took his lead off. Dembe jumped the last 5 steps straight onto the beach. Not as good as our previous Weimaraner Mollie who Jay let off who then jumped the sea wall dropping at least 8 foot onto the sand below. Thankfully without injury.

Dembe had a whale of a time running around, doing zoomies. He was playing with the other dogs on the beach and he had a swim in the sea. As it was dark he was noticing the waves coming up behind him and got a drenching. He ran himself ragged.

Later that evening I collapsed in severe pain, I was by myself as Dembe was in with Jay. I stumbled towards the bathroom and sat there for a bit wondering if the pain was going to ease up at all. As I made my way back to bed I fell. Dembe came out of the bedroom saw me on the floor and ran straight into Jays room and woke him up by nibbling his hand. I was in so much pain I was unable to speak. Jay helped me get back to bed and Dembe was glued to my side. eventually the pain died down and I managed to get to sleep around midnight. It was only then that Dembe went back in with his dad.

Friday 7th February

Dembe is stuck to me like glue today after me having a migraine and then my bowel adhesion’s playing up last night. We didn’t really do much today as I was feeling so rank. Jay took Dembe out before work so he had a good run and he was mroe than happy just to curl up with me on the sofa.

At 7pm Dembe took himself up to bed which is practically unheard of. I knew he was knackered from being on duty looking after me.

Saturday 8th February

Today is my parents wedding anniversary! Happy anniversary.

This photo of Dembe totally sums how I am feeling today, utterly drained. There is a huge storm tomorrow “Storm Ciara” so I am trying to get all the jobs done that I would do on a Saturday and Sunday with help into one day and it is exhausting when my batteries are already drained!

Dembe came to life later that evening! He was having a mad hour or so after his dinner whilst waiting for Jay to get home.

Sunday 9th February

My god it is windy. We woke up at 6am to find one of the fence panels flapping in the wind. It is only a yellow warning currently and that increases to an amber warning at 8am. We managed to get outside at around 7.30am to fix the fence panel. The wind was so strong I nearly got blown off my feet and I am no shrinking violet. Dembe isn’t keen on the wind and keeps barking at it.

So far so good we still have power but the next postcode are over from us has lost power. I have candles and a gas stove should that happen here. I am racing to get Dembe’s blog completed and set up ready to publish in case of loss of power.

Dog Agility training got cancelled at around 10.30am due to the weather.

The amber warning will be in place until 9pm this evening so I am signing off early. Stay safe.

W/C 19th August 2019

Monday 19th August

Dembe was a very sleepy boy today. We seem to have days where he is manic and days where he sleeps all day long. He either likes to sleep on me / next to me or on the small sofa in the lounge, scooched up on cushions.

For some reason today Dembe wanted to bark at everything, no idea what was bothering him but every little noise he heard that came from outside was being barked at. Noises like kids playing, neighbours talking, cars driving past were being barked at . He was even running upstairs and barking out of Jays bedroom window which is something Mollie used to do. It was very strange. He also spent a lot of time in his favourite place on the window ledge.

We did have lots of cuddles which was gorgeous. I managed to capture this photo and I realised how much it looked like a photo I took 9 months ago when he was 9 weeks old.

When we got back from taking Dembe out for his walk this evening we came across a curled up hedgehog on our front garden. We managed to get Dembe inside without seeing it.

We took him across the road to my neighbours house as their garden although enclosed backs on to a lane where it would be safer and more full of food sources for him / her. I checked him over and there were no parasites or open wounds.

Tuesday 20th August

Dembe didn’t wake up until 5.30am for his breakfast, Jay was so out of it when I woke him he started having a go at me for letting him oversleep by an hour. I didn’t say anything as I knew he was still half asleep. He had woken up thinking it was Monday. He did apologise later and said he had got confused and was convinced he was going to be late for work.

When Dembe woke up for the second time he was determined to have all the pack together, so he went into Jays room to wake him up.

A friends husband popped up today to borrow my wheelchair for his wife Julie. She is recovering from a huge operation on her ankle and can’t weight bare at all at the moment. Get well soon Julie. Dembe was really shy with Nigel to begin with, we think it is because we don’t have many male visitors to the house and not ones he doesn’t know. Dembe kept running over to me and standing over me. We haven’t seen him act like that before ( but with the barking yesterday he seems a bit out of sorts) . By the time Nigel left, Dembe adored him and was playing tug, ball and kissing Nigel. It was very sweet. After Nigel left Dembe was shattered.

We had a lovely walk together in the afternoon, we went out longer than normal which was good fun, although my mobility scooter really didn’t like the gradient. Dembe led the way all the way around our little circuit. He went straight to sleep when we got in and we had to wake him up for dinner.

We needn’t have worried about him being so tired as he got a second wind about two hours later and we were playing out in the garden with him.

Wednesday 21st August

Dembe had breakfast at 5am, Dembe had been stirring for a while. Jay decided to stay up as he was taking Dembe out for a walk before work. Either Dembe settled or I was so knackered that I went back to sleep and I didn’t wake up until they got back from their walk at the model airfield.

As Dembe hates going out for an early walk Jay had to bribe him with two cocktail sausages to get him out of the front door. He really isn’t a morning dog! Just as well Jay went out early, as part way through the walk he got a call to ask him to go in earlier. Good for us as it means he will be home earlier .

Dembe is following around the house, to the point I am tripping up on him. I am really suffering bad headaches at the moment due to my neck coming out of alignment when I sleep and I am sure Dembe is picking up on the fact it makes me feel so rotten.

He was again on the window ledge watching the world go by!

Uncle Paul popped over today to collect a parcel that I had delivered here for him. Dembe was over excited, he just loves Paul so much he gets silly. He embarrassed himself as he knocked Paul’s coffee into his lap ( thank god it didn’t burn him) as he brought his football over for Paul to throw for him but barged into him. I could have died. Paul took it in his stride and said it didn’t matter. I really wish that Dembe didn’t get so excited when he see’s some people as he then ends up behaving like a hooligan until he calms down.

I managed to finish the quilting on my quilt today. It still needs bound but the hardest part is done. Dembe has been so well behaved whilst I have done this and just entertained himself or slept whilst I worked on it.

Thursday 22nd August

Oh my days my head is even worse today. I am having to wear my soft collar a lot of the time to keep the pressure off my neck. Dembe is being very good and looking after me. Jay is on a late night so got Dembe out nice and early for a good walk.

He has been on the window sill every day this week, at least twice a day. He loves it there.

I went up to bed at 7pm but Dembe wouldn’t come up with me. He has started waiting for Jay to come home so refuses to move away from the small sofa by the front door. He won’t come up to bed now until Jay gets home after 10pm. I hate it as Frankie and Mollie always used to come up to bed with me, it feels weird being in bed by myself. Willow would always wait for her dad so would sleep on the landing or half way down the stairs so she could see him get in before everyone else. He only started doing this last week. I had hoped it was a one off. I hope at some point he decides to stay with me until his daddy gets in. But I won’t force him to stay upstairs.

Friday 23rd August

Dembe woke me up at 6.30am by dropping a tennis ball on my face! Not even remotely funny, I haven’t had a great nights sleep and he has been crying trying to wake me up since he came back upstairs after his breakfast.

As Jay is on a 10-7 shift he got Dembe up the common quite early. He went to the model airfield again where they met another Labrador aged 17 months called Sid. They had a crazy time playing together, they played chase which is Dembe’s favourite. By the time he got home he was hot and knackered.

We have been messing around today having cuddles on the bed. My head yest again is crap so I have been lying down on and off trying to ease the feeling of pressure at the base of my skull. During one of these play periods Dembe has managed to scratch my arm with his dew claw. My skin is very fragile due to Ehlers Danlos Syndrome so what would be a normal scratch on others is this on me

As the weather is really nice I got Dembe’s paddling pool out. He went crazy! I haven’t seen him like that since the garden was revamped and he got to play on it for the first time! He was running to the back of the garden and then leaping into the paddling pool. For his own safety in the end I had to turn the hosepipe off as I was terrified he was going to slip and then really injure himself. We still had fun out in the garden though. Just calmer fun. I also got his solar fountain out and had that running.

Saturday 24th August

This photo really made me laugh today

Especially when captioned with “Truth be told Dembe was never going to win the World Championship of Hide & Seek” or “has anyone seen Dembe? I can’t find him”. He is such a silly sausage sometimes all Jay and i can do is laugh at him.

My arm is looking a bit of a mess today as more of the bruising has come out. Thankfully it isn’t hurting anymore.

My head was muzzy again today so I have taken it quite easy, well as easy as I could manage. In the evening we went over to my parents van after Dembe had his walk. He had a good game of chase with Maggie going crazy and stealing her raw hide again.

Sunday 25th August

Dembe having a snooze after his walk up the common with daddy this morning. Today they went to Woodbury castle but as it was early and very misty they didn’t see another soul the whole time they were out.

As I am writing up this week’s diary entries into his Blog, Dembe has got on the window sill and is watching me work. He likes lying so that his nose is almost touching my shoulder. He looks like he is reading what I am writing!

Jay is on holiday now for a week so we shall be spending lots of time together, which Dembe will love. He loves his pack being all together,