It’s been a day full of exciting adventures. First and foremost DURANCE VILE IS OFFICIALLY OVER. LET THE HURTLING BEGIN. Since we only had a few minutes* because I wanted to be able to put her down for a another few minutes elsewhere today, I carried her to the churchyard this morning and set her down . . . and watched her react to the realisation that The World Is a Very Big Place. Very. Big. Especially when you’re only about six inches at the shoulder.**
And we went bell ringing again tonight at South Desuetude and those stairs aren’t getting any shorter and Pavlova is not getting any lighter, but Niall carried the crate for me. I bought him a beer at the pub***, where Pavlova was a star. I’d warned poor Niall that while I was happy to drive and give him a lift, I was bringing the hellterror and that I was furthermore positively going to stop at the Phlogiston Arms on the way back because they allow dogs and I could Show the Puppy More Stuff. Also, they brew their own beer, which is excellent.
I think she’s getting bored with bell ringing, since no one ever offers to teach her. Oh, this again, she says, puts her paws over her ears and goes to sleep. But she woke up for the pub, where it turned out the bar maid loooooooooves bull terriers, and told rather alarming stories of the gigantic brindle bullie bitch of her childhood, who had the bullie joie de vivre and an awful lot of weight to throw it around with. Pavlova is a MINI! I said, perhaps a little desperately. She also said there is a gigantic genial brindle male bullie who comes to the pub upon occasion (trailing humans, as dogs are usually expected to do). Pavlova and I may have to investigate. Tonight there was a yellow lab I have seen before, who is about the size of a bull mastiff crossed with an SUV, but friendly. He sauntered up to Pavlova who was, at that point, having a slight moment of insecurity about things—it was pretty noisy in the pub, and she had met a lot of new best friends in the last few minutes—but as soon as he raised his shovel-sized head toward her as she sat in my lap I could feel her tail start to go. WhapwhapwhapwhapwhapwhapwhapwhapWHAP.
Ears UP, I notice. And a very attractive feature they prove. They have that adorable slightly-too-big-for-the-rest-of-the-puppy look.
Southdowner says they’ll flop back down again when she hits teething. They’re not actually what you’d call hard up even now. But I have mixed feelings about her ears. Aside from the question of how big she’s going to get because her ears have come up slowly, if they don’t come up perfectly then we’re let off the dog show question. Southdowner said when she was down here last Sunday week that Pav is still the pattern-card of bullie puppy perfection. Oh dear. I think a nice small harmless design fault might be in order.†
just look at the little, pink puppy tummy!
I adore the little pink puppy tummy. I am extremely fond of dog tummies generally, when they belong to dogs who want their them rubbed. Sighthounds with their dramatic undercarriage are a little more challenging a rub than the standard issue, but you learn to adjust. The best thing about Pavlova is that she’s a girl. Not that I wouldn’t have been just as besotted with Fruitcake if I’d ended up with him . . . but there’s all that tummy on a girl.
Diane in MN
So, remind me . . . what’s the bright idea about THREE dogs?
Been there, done that, it’s all heart and gut, no matter what the brain provides as reasons. It’s why I don’t go out of my way to look at puppies.
Birmingham is only two and something hours away by train. And another two and something coming back. That’s not going out of my way, is it?
Thanks to your blog, I now find myself ogling bull terriers in the street. I saw two … today, one white, one brindle. I wanted to go and give them a cuddle … but realised just in time that the owner might, at the very least, give me strange looks.
Well you certainly have to ask before you fall on someone else’s dog(s) with arms outstretched and cries of gladness, but most owners would be delighted. Want to get on someone’s good side? Want to make a blindly loyal friend for life? Make a fuss over their dog(s).
She is, furthermore, starting to respond to Little Fat Thing. Oops.
I don’t suppose you’d consider transitioning her call name to Elefti, by any chance?
You know, ‘LFT’….
It sounds like a character in one of Kes’ books. I wouldn’t be surprised if Aldetruda has a friend named Elefti. She kicks ass, of course.
Diane in MN
I’ve found that puppies generally start sleeping through the night at ten or eleven weeks. I hope Pavlova reaches this milestone soon.
SHE REACHED IT THE DAY BEFORE HER BOWELS MUTINIED. At the moment I have no clue . . . and I’m cleaning out various crates rather a lot and I’m not in a good mood.
Well, we still call our puppy Baby . . . it has been two years, so I’m beginning to think that’s probably her name now.
Well, Brighid and Bramble are still “the pups” at age 3.
I guess there are a lot of us around. In the last generation Holly and Hazel were ‘the pups’ all their lives. And I think Rowan was born a grande dame.
She can hardly pee fast enough to rush back and get her bit of kibble. In fact I suspect that sometimes the reason she has to pee again so soon is because she cut the first one short because she was HUNGRY.
You don’t think it’s just because she wants more kibble?
???? Why isn’t this what I said?
Diane in MN
It would be nice if puppies got solid sphincter control at about the same time as they figured out what outdoors is for, but it’s never happened that way with any puppy I’ve known.
ARRRRRRRRGH. See above. Also, despite the number of dogs that frolic through the churchyard†† Pavlova did not pee . . . in our churchyard, in South Desuetude’s, or in the meadow behind the pub. No, she had to get back home to her garden. Or her crate, of course, with the endless supply of freshly changed newspapers. Siiiiiiiiiiigh.
I have 2yo husky mix, myself, and this brings back all sorts of [repressed] memories of those horrible and yet sweet first few weeks.
Ha. Horrible and yet sweet. And repressed. Yes. Exactly. As I’ve said for some reason several times recently, baby things are adorable so we don’t kill them. Little pink puppy tummies are an evolutionary survival mechanism. ARRRRRRGH.
. . . The upshot of all these numbers is that yes, whippets are considerably faster than cheetahs, pound-for-pound. If you had a 100lb whippet that maintained the speed-to-weight ratio, a cheetah-sized whippet would have a top speed of approximately 140mph, which, incidentally, is fast enough to be a federal offense on many US highways.
* * *
* Ten lousy minutes! Ten minutes! I can add five minutes a month to walk time. ARRRRGH. So there is still a lot of hanging on the other end of frayed cotton ropes and creatively shaped rubber and plastic objects and hot pink snugga wubbas^ in my immediate future.^^
^^ And by the time she’s ten years old we’ll be walking ten hours a day. + Hmm. I assume you get to stop adding five minutes a month at some point.
+ Or nine hours and fifty-five minutes. Because we’re starting with ten minutes at three months. Or something.
** One of those hard crusty blokes that you surreptitiously look around to check if there’s anyone else nearby as he walks toward you, stopped and looked at Pavlova. His face lit up and he said, Oh! A bull terrier puppy! An English bull terrier! They are wonderful dogs!
*** not necessarily because he carried the crate, but it didn’t hurt.
† I don’t think slightly frilly ears are going to save me from breeding her however if she goes on as she’s begun. I know, I know, I’m besotted, but she is at least nearly a pattern-card of physical perfection, and she really does have the kind of personality you want to keep in the gene pool.
†† Rant alert: I cannot BELIEVE the amount of dog crap in the churchyard. What is the MATTER with people. It’s bad enough to be an utter beneath contempt turd in public spaces generally^ but in a CHURCHYARD?????? I don’t care what your dinglebrained private beliefs are, you can jolly well fricking respect other people’s. Not to mention people who want a nice amble around a pretty churchyard with romantic old stones in it, and maybe sit on the grass for a picnic . . . ewwwwwwww.
^ And some modest allowance does have to be made for the way crap can go invisible on you, especially this time of year when there are a lot of crap-coloured leaves around, especially when your more-than-one dog decide(s) to crap simultaneously at opposite ends of their long extending leads. Also, if you happen to have a dog that likes to stroll while he’s defecating, you’re never perfectly sure you got all of it. Especially if there’s long grass involved.+
+ HATE long grass. HAAAAAAATE.
Please join the discussion at Robin McKinley's Web Forum.