A Word About…Dog Bonding

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I know what some of you are thinking…”So what’s the big deal?  You see a dog, you love it, it loves you back.”  Well, for some of us it isn’t that straight-forward.  We aren’t all dog people.  I don’t normally love dogs.  Nor do they automatically love me.  We usually just ignore one another. But as most of you know, I’ve recently acquired a Grandpuppy.  Son, Adam, got a puppy about three months ago. Mini is destined to be his Assistance Dog.  I have steeled myself over the past few years for the time when this would actually happen.  The prospect of it was not made any easier by Adam’s choice–after much research on the matter–of a Newfoundland puppy.  It wasn’t that I had anything against Newfoundlands–I didn’t know anything about them –but when told that they grow to be as big as–or bigger than– St. Bernard’s, I was a little off-put, to say the least.  But, again, I steeled myself.

Mini joined our pack about three months ago, when she was just three months old.  She weighed 13 kg (28 pounds).  .

Mini 12 ½ weeks old

Mini 12 ½ weeks old.  Who wouldn’t fall in love with this gorgeous girl?!

Lest you think my love is fickle, I must reassure you that it has not waned as she has grown.  The vet who weighed her and assessed her last week assured Adam that she will double her weight from here.  She now weighs 36 kg (79 pounds).  “She will be a large (!) Newfoundland,”  said he.  She has a large head, and an even larger butt.  I guess she’s gonna spend the next few months growing into them.  Meanwhile, she’s as rambunctious as any other six month old puppy.  That can be a trial when that rambunctious puppy weighs eighty pounds!  It’s a good thing she is such a sweetiepie!   In fact, I’m even learning to accept her one big fault:  slobbering.  It’s revolting.  To be honest, it doesn’t happen nearly as much as I expected.  Mostly after she has had a drink.  At that point she hurls water everywhere.  But then you notice that it isn’t all water.  Big gobs of slobber start appearing on the floor, on your clothes, anywhere you let her get close to.  Fortunately for me, I do not let her in my face…  The water soon dries up, but not so the slobber…  It remains wet and sticky.  Very sticky.  It gives new meaning to the word ‘bonding.’

image

For several weeks now she has been able to help herself to whatever is on the table, but–thankfully–she seems to think that anything that is on the floor, or that has ever been on the floor, is hers, and anything on shelves or tables is not for her, so she generally leaves it alone.  There are exceptions, however…

I recently made a chocolate cake, with chocolate icing.  It was on the  benchtop in the kitchen.  Now, I’m living in an old bakery, so I’m talking about a commercial kitchen here, with high, wide, stainless steel bench tops.  When I went to get the cake, I noticed a rather large indentation in it…an indentation which hadn’t been there previously.  It was just the size to have been made by someone’s elbow…or by a large-headed dog’s nose.  To be honest, I didn’t even bother to check anyones’ elbows…  Interesting that Mini hadn’t eaten any of it.  She’s been on a fairly strict diet, and of course chocolate doesn’t figure in it. I guess she didn’t recognise the smell, so left it alone (apart from sticking her big fat nose in it!). So then I was thinking, “Oh, dear.  Am I going to have to waste the whole cake?”  Meanwhile, Adam and Olivier were thinking, “Only the one end is ruined.”  Stam didn’t bother thinking…he just said, “No worry!  I’ll have that piece!”

imageSweet Miss Mini

 I’m pretty sure if I hadn’t bonded with her straightaway, I would be highly motivated to do so now, ’cause  in a few months she’s gonna weigh more than me…        MM

 

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