Thursday, February 10, 2011

A Heartbeat At My Feet

View across the Constantia Glen vineyards from the verandah of the estate's Tasting Room, which we visited on Sunday.
Aside from feebly trying to keep abreast of all the wonderful blogs I follow, this has been a most unproductive week for me, blogging-wise.  Since last week on Thursday, my life has been usurped by an adorable, fluffy-eared, little sweetheart and it's not even mine!  It belongs to my daughter, but as she works away from home for two days a week, and has other intermittent commitments on some weekends, I've been coerced into puppy-sitting this bundle of love, both here at home and at our daughter's home, until he's fully house-trained and able and ready to be left alone at home for short periods of time.

Hi!  Pleased to meet you...I'm the new pup on the block!
Please click on the read more button to continue this post...
I put myself here...don't you think the couch matches my colouring well?
He's 13 weeks old and was adopted from an Animal Rescue Centre.  What is it about the little so-called "mutts" of the canine world?  They have no claim to pedigrees, nor any status to speak of, yet they arrive with so much in-built charm, such wily little ways guaranteed to win over even the most steely-hearted disposition and, before you know it, they're 'here to stay'! 

This is so comfy, I think I'll test it out for some 'shut-eye' time until I'm spotted!
Regular readers of my blog know that we have three dogs of our own.  We love them to bits and have given them a safe, comfortable home.  In fact, we're their own private butlers, truth be told. 

Oops!  Think I've been spotted!!!
Maybe if I just lie 'doggo' they'll allow me to stay!  It really is such a cosy, quiet spot...
We are definitely not looking to taking on another puppy/adult dog.  Yet, here we are, puppy-sitting as eagerly as if we'd become grandparents!

Our three having a happy time at Rooi Els recently.
At not quite 11 months of age, our Toby is not yet over his own puppyhood.  He belies this fact because, compared to our daughter's tiny pup, he's positively gigantic!  He, however, knows he's still a pup inside and feels this little newcomer has muscled in on his territory.  He doesn't like the situation at all and so, for now, we've had to keep them separated, definitely neither wise nor ideal, but we're working on it! 
The 'neutral territory' where we'd hoped to get the initial 'introductions' off to a happy start on Monday afternoon!
Our initial attempt to introduce them all to each other on Monday afternoon, on neutral ground, failed abysmally.  We'd preceded this arranged meeting to occur post plenty of exercise (ball chasing) and were ready with a selection of tasty treats (bribes), but our carefully engineered plans were foiled! Subsequently, we tried (later) in the garden back at home, again after plenty of exercise (swimming), but that proved no better.

Oh yes!  Please do come closer...I'd really like to get my teeth into you, you little intruder!
Bonny and Heathcliff, however, have taken to him in a big way.  They think he's just too marvellous, especially once he'd put aside his show of bravado and willingly submitted to them.  They both want to be around him all the time.  Heathcliff has become quite the 'show-off' with his repeated diving into the pool to retrieve balls whilst furtively eyeballing the pup to make sure he's watching ALL THE TIME!  Bonny at age 10 & 3/4 years, has the irresistible compulsion to follow the pup devotedly and drool all over him, CONTINUOUSLY!

This, however, will cause problems for Toby, as they're 'his' mates and so we've had to restrict Bonny & Heathcliff's playtime with the puppy to shorter periods, whilst the unhappy Toby is kept isolated in a different part of the garden. Again, definitely not ideal!!!

Lovely views across the vineyards...

I could live here!

Rugged mountains keeping watch...

Don't let those wispy clouds fool was a blisteringly hot day and we'd come to fetch....
Yes!  You guessed correctly!  He'd spent the morning here with our daughter (she has been helping out on odd weekends) and we fetched him to take back to her home for the afternoon...but only after we'd first enjoyed a delicious picnic lunch at the farm :)
Our daughter has booked her puppy in for socialising classes with an Animal Behavourist, starting on Saturday and will discuss the 'Toby situation' with her.  If necessary, we'll engage her services to help Toby overcome this hurdle, as it's important for all concerned that he learns to accept the puppy.

For today, at least, life in our household has returned to normal.  Our three had their walk, followed by their swim and are now contentedly napping.  Tomorrow evening, the pup will be back to overnight with us, as our daughter and her boyfriend have a prearranged function to attend.  She will collect him first thing on Saturday morning, to take him to his first puppy class.

Never let it be forgotten

Properly trained, a man can be dog's best friend.
~ Corey Ford ~



  1. Those who say money can't buy happiness have never had a new puppy.

  2. O my...i read your post later i must go away now...but i must say your puppy is wonderful !!! i feel love love love !!! sweet sleeping on your white sofa!!!....nice nice !! talk you by !! love

  3. your doughter's puppy is so cute, no wonder you are spending time with the little miracle:)

  4. You have a full time job there trying to socialise Toby. The pup looks adorable hope you have success.

  5. The puppy is so cute! My parents don't have a dog and have been our dog sitter when we go out of town. Gracie gets spoiled by them and I know my Mom has fun with her - she spoils her.

  6. That dog just looks way too comfortable. I love it.

  7. Ohhhhh, what a cutie! What's his/her name?
    Toby says HI!


  8. Poor Toby. I hope he soon learns to accept the little puppy, for everyone's sake. It's always tricky introducing a new dog.

    He is beautiful though, They all are :)

  9. I love to read your blog......the pictures are wonderfull, and the puppy.....aaahhhhh.....i'm in love.....have a nice day...greetings Bianca

  10. What wonderful and attentive caregivers you are!It is quite a commitment to puppy sit and even more so when you have three doggies of your own. Your daughter is very lucky to have you there! And that puppy is SERIOUSLY a cutie pie! Give Toby a belly rub from me, so he knows he's just as WONDERFUL!

  11. What a cutie! Are you also supposed to train him not to lie on the furniture? We cant have animals :( but I sure did enjoy visiting with yours! I am sure that training will be the answer. Oh that wine farm looks fabulous, what a wonderful place to have a picnic lunch.

  12. He is absolutely adorable :)

    Whats the name?

  13. I'm not a 'doggy' person and they sound more of a handful than a bunch of kids! The baby is pretty cute though.

  14. Aw, I feel for Toby... however, I'm sure you'll sort it all out.
    Cute puppy!

  15. Hello Everyone :)

    The puppy's name is Romeo, just in time for Valentine's Day :) He's coming along so well and loving his new 'forever' home as the Rescue Centre carers like to call it!

    Thanks for all your lovely comments - I've shared them with my daughter, who is delighted, this being her first-ever, solely-owned pup and so it's all still so very new and exciting for her.

    Toby and Romeo are gradually adapting, but still at a distance...and, don't worry, Toby gets no less of our love and attention, so he's not losing out.

  16. Lovely shots! The pup looks like he's right at home!

  17. Our Mele is now five years old and an only dog. I have still not recovered from her raucus puppyhood antics. ARGGG! Hurts to remember it! :)


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