Saturday, 31 August 2013

Catching up with Blue

Cat in the box

Blue has some more experiences to share, the cat in the box is significant for a couple of reasons, and it is all about fun, and keeping the mind active.

As Blue is now on twitter BluetheGSD he has begun to find new followers, he is still learning the lingo, but he has recently been followed by a cat,    "sienna skye". The mere mention of the word CAT drives Blue to distraction, I don't think they wind him up, but he winds himself up into a frenzy. But we guess cyber-cats are fine.

So where is this going, while out in the garden his coat looked, dry and dull, clearly in need of a brush, well he is such a wriggle arse and has so many itchy spots, grooming is like a game of tickle with him.

Distraction is the key to grooming Blue, and today we tried a new method, with the thought of his new cat friend on twitter, we placed a garden pottery cat in his treat box, he could just about lick the treats, but the pottery cat prevented removal of the goodies. Worked a treat for nearly a whole minute, but blue decided there was a better game, turf the cat and contents out of the box.

Pussy, you have been evicted from the big brothers box ;-))

Blue claims the spoils of war
Eventually the game was ended, by the collection of the treats not eaten, though Blue did get a good few, I think the he would have given a "Dyson" hoover a run for its money.

When we have our dinner, Blue always has his dished up at the same time, he is amusing to watch, some days he will dive straight in other days he will wait to our cutlery is placed on the plates, signifying we have finished our meal, then he will go and eat his dinner. Tonight's dinner, he went straight to his bowl, took out and ate the mackerel skin, and went for a lay down, obviously dinner was a poor substitute foe the a fore mentioned treats, but he does this other days, so it is just how he is feeling at the time.

Blue has always been very relaxed about food, he is not a fussy eater, and is definitely not a food guarder, we were advised to hand feed him on occasions as a pup, to help ensure he did not guard his food.

On this night lord and master wanted to be hand fed by his minions, but it is all part of the fun and interaction with Blue.

Hand fed Blue
Hand fed dinner.

After a good nights sleep, Blue was ready for his dawn walk at 6.30am so off he went with my wife Sue, while I stayed at home and prepared breakfast. and caught up with twitter etc.

About 07.20 am in the distance could be heard a dog barking, but not just any bark, that was Blue barking, but it was not a happy bark, so I quickly grabbed some shoes and went out of the house to see what was the cause of the distress. As I reached the edge of the local park, Blue was still going at it with another dog, my wife was so glad that I arrived, she quickly explained that this other lady could not get hold of her dog who was goading Blue. Just prior to my arrival another dog walker with his boxer entered the park, looked at both women with their dogs, and said "good luck" and walked off.

To cut a long story short, the other dog which turned out to be a seven month old Labrador, was eventually grabbed by its owner, as I held out treats for the curious dog, she then managed to put a collar/leash onto her dog. The collar she had was a metal one with links and prongs, no wonder she had trouble putting it on, and I guess it is not the most forgiving collar a dog could wear. Apologies given and accepted, all was well, as she continued her walk around the park, and we headed home with the wife explaining what had happened.

So the Lab was seven months old and just wanted to play, but as Blue had had spinal surgery as a pup, he is not allowed to play rough and tumble with other dogs, vets advice, given to us during his rehabilitation.

As Blue is a well known figure in our local park, and surrounding streets, my wife thinks he will get the blame for the raucous at dawn this morning, she shouldn't worry, me and Blue don't.

As I was writing this blog, Blue spotted a cat in the back garden, and high tailed it out there to clear the area of felines, one day they may learn to co-habitat, but not sure that will be any day soon.

A week from now Blue will be going to the Lake District in the North of England, he walks the fells and mountains as if they are his own.

Wednesday, 28 August 2013

Blue's favourite treat

Blue's favourite

After being very patient while we have been decorating, Blue will have his favourite treat.

A quick game of football, always time for a quick game of football with Blue.

Friday, 23 August 2013

BluetheGSD Twitter

Following numerous other twitters, thought the time was right to set up Blue with his own account.

As well as simple day to day activities it will be a chance to share some of his actions and reactions to things in his doggie world.

All views will be an interpretation into the way he responds, and to give it a bit more personality I will learn to use some of the lingo as used by others.

OTRB. Over the rainbow bridge. Doggie resting place after they have passed away, just like humans
BOL Barks out loud
Humans. That would be other people
Hudad;; My human dad
Humum; My human mum
Furdad; My doggie dad
Furmum; My doggie mum
Furbro; Brothers from my litter
Fursis; Sisters from my litter

* current action/activity

There are probably loads more to learn, if others dislike it or find it inappropriate, then my suggestion is either read it for the fun it is, or don't read it your choice.

As said on many previous blogs, Blue is very special, and what he gives us is so much, there is enough to share out.

So if you know any phrases we can join in with, share them with Blue on his twitter page, he will always follow, those with good intentions who share the view that life is for living and fun helps the journey.

Remember to follow @bluethegsd "Bol"

Friday, 9 August 2013

More than a hobbyhorse? After a day out.

Blue and Sue at the White Horse, Uffington
On Tuesday this week we had a trip out to the White Horse at Uffington near Wantage. A place we had never visited before. The reason being that there would be no weekly swim for Blue due to the owners of the pool being away on holiday.

A relatively short trip from Reading, down the M4, in less than an hour we were parked up in the National Trust car park.

Our walk we decided would be along the famous Ridgeway to Wayland's Smithy, even though we did not have a clue what it was. Like so many walks Blue is happy to be out and about with us, though we are very mindful of where and how long to walk, dependent very much on weather and distance. Our destination was to be a mile and a quarter heading west from the car park.

Upon the gate there were signs to signify the field contained sheep and dogs must be kept on a lead, no problem for Blue. There was also an additional sign saying that due to recent incidents some livestock had to be destroyed after an encounter with a loose dog.

As said before this is not a problem for Blue, most of his walks are on a lead and he has a good temperament most of the time, but around sheep he is excellent. Once we were walking back from Haystacks in the Lake District when a whole flock came charging off the hill completely surrounding us as they passed, Blue sat and watched in bewilderment, probably too many to focus on.

The few people and dogs we saw on our outward journey on the Ridgeway were met with a courteous look and nod and we passed each other without incident.Our biggest problem was pesky flies, though they did not seem to bother Blue too much.

We arrived at Wayland's Smithy, an ancient burial ground, time for a few pictures before we made our way back along the Ridgeway to the "White horse hill"

Even with OS map we  missed our turning on the return trek and extended our walk by a little bit, before finding a gate onto White horse hill. This is also the site of Uffington Castle and a chance for another photo of Blue on location.

As we made our way down, from the castle ramparts to the White horse chalk figure we came across more dog walkers, whose dogs were also well behaved on leads, and we were all having a good time.

After nearly two hours walking / sightseeing we now made our way back to the car park along a grassy track. Where bobbing up and down was a Red Setter, off lead and clearly lost, running hither and thither in the long grass, we could not do anything because of Blue, but it did disappear shortly after, presumably to its owner. Remembering the sign about dogs, leads and sheep, the sheep were noticeable by their absence, so no livestock were in any immediate danger, but either someone was being negligent or bloody minded about not putting their dog on a lead, because at no point was anyone even calling it.

When we arrived at the car park, there was a picnic bench which we all sat at to drink in the view and refreshments.

While sat there, through the gate with all the previously mentioned signs, came a woman with both her dogs not on leads, one of which was, yes you guessed the Red Setter from before. The smaller dog stayed with the owner the Red Setter wanted to check Blue out. Blue don't do checking out so took a very defensive stance and bark to match. We made no attempt to discourage him, as this dog was under no control of the owner who simply went to her car murmuring about "Shepherds"

So to the title More than a hobby?
The dictionary meaning is "Hobby - activity pursued in ones spare time"
Hobbyhorse is a "favourite topic"

Yes Blue could be described as a hobbyhorse, but to be honest he is so much more than that.

Taking Blue out is a great joy and experience, and we know he loves it so much as well.

 The end of Blue's tail