It was Joe ! (Strictly winner)  How did I know that ?  Hmm, I’ve been working so long with Danielle now that I think some of her ‘witchiness’ has rubbed off on to me !  We had a great Strictly Finals night, I had stuck with the Glitterball contest and there were some fabulous ones.  If I can get the computer to behave I’ll attach a photo of the winners. (The one in the middle with the dog attached is my pathetic effort and only included in the photo because I wanted my friend’s grandchildren who made the dog for me to see his starring role !)Hey, it worked !!

Nick is coming on leaps and bounds (literally).  I have to trick him to get hold of him but the collar was changed without any loss of limb and I took pity on him spending all day every day in his park so I took off the lead that was attached at all times and let him run round the garden.  Well at first I left the lead on but all the time he was running the chain lead was smacking at his back legs which made it difficult, plus, with all the best will in the world, accidents can happen and if (St. Cadbury forbid) he should somehow get out of the garden, it would have been very dangerous with the lead attached.  He could get trapped somewhere and never be found or the lead could get entangled in the wheels of a car.  He is totally devoted to our old Lab, Ben, and follows him everywhere, even to the point of leaving his own kennel and park to move in with Ben.  Ben is a dear and very tolerant, the only time I need to separate them is at mealtimes as Nick will dive in to any bowl and Ben will just not stand bad manners of that kind !  Nick is gradually losing his fear of people and, if trapped, will accept a cuddle but he still has the scared stiff look in his eye.  We will get there.

It was a ‘parson’s egg’ sort of Christmas.  We went to a lovely concert on the 23rd which would have been even better if I would cease to underestimate how bally cold churches are !  We froze and from the way the musicians romped through the programme, I guess they were pretty chilly too !  Christmas Eve was nice and lazy, then on Christmas Day we had our usual Fizz from 12 to 2 for friends which was great …….. in the main !  Friends Rachel and Pascal came and went off with Nanette !  They had been wanting to adopt her for a couple of years now but were in rented accommodation where only one dog was allowed, or, indeed, only room for.  Now they are living in their own property with a large garden and Rachel asked if they could take Nanette there and then.  Wow, what a shock, I had never thought it would happen.  Nanette is a darling (if a tad dominant) and the most obedient.  She is the only one who will always stay with me on a walk even when the other monsters run off and come home hours later !  Naturally I  was happy she would be going to such a good home but she has been with us for three years and, of course it was like giving up your child (not ever having had children I cannot state that from experience but I can imagine that is what it would be like…. or worse !).  As she was taken down the drive Nanette kept pulling at the lead trying to get back to me and looking at me with eyes saying “you traitor”.  I was in pieces and had to go in and shut the door, where I found my lovely pal Gaynor also in floods.  What a pair we were !  However it was better that way I had no time to think about things.  Nanette ?  Huh, within an hour of arriving at her new home, her paws were well and truly under the table and she had ousted poor Rouky from his own basket !

On Boxing Day I had to finally make the decision to take my Lulu to be pts.  He had suddenly gone very downhill two days before and could no longer even stand up.  Having been blind, deaf  and incontinent for a long while his quality of life was limited but he loved his food and the vet had said that whilst he was eating happily he wasn’t suffering.  However, then not being able to stand was distressing him hugely and he was crying.  He wasn’t the only one.  Since starting Poorpaws I have had to make pts decisions many times and it NEVER EVER gets easier, I am a total mess.  I know, know, know, it was the right thing to do but it doesn’t help much.Having said goodbye to Lulu, in the afternoon, I took myself off to see Paddington 2, a lovely film, but I managed to cry at that too !

Let’s have some happier news !  Minty has been adopted,  It was lovely to see the Stewards again who took Minty to be a pal to Filly an ex Poorpaws and one of my absolute favourites.  Jazz the ShihTzu and both her pups have gone, or will soon be going, to great homes.  The Khortal has gone to a couple who run a restaurant near St. Antonin,  hmm I see fabulous food for him there !

We’ll be saying farewell to 2017, which hasn’t been a great year, with friends.  We all have to provide some sort of entertainment so Ernst and I will be singing our own version of the Twelve Days of Christmas – you won’t be surprised that, according to our version, on the 12th day of Christmas my true love brought to me ………….. 12 abandoned puppies !!

Have a great New Year,

Sue x

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