the invalids



Posting days: Sunday and Wednesday and, sometimes, maybe, extra bits in between.


Sunday November 18th 2018




Nancy, Scamp, Rufus, Shaggy and Bertie



Rufus knows that L. has dried sardines in her pocket and is hoping to be the first served. Any minute now, the others will catch on. Not Isis, though. She’s afraid, yes, honestly, afraid of L.’s dried sardines. When offered one, she not only turns her head away, she jumps back in horror, her tail between her legs.

Strange, because she loves a sardine for tea with her dried food. She loves any fish she’s offered other than those dried sardines. I wonder whether, when she was on the loose in Portugal, she came across a dried out fish on a beach, ate it and made herself ill.

It’s been lovely to have Nancy back in the park after her cruciate ligament operation and ensuing complications. No sooner was she beginning to recover than she succumbed to a cycle of recurrent and severe diarrhoea.

Her humans realised that the problem seemed to occur  a few days after each of her many courses of antibiotics. Tests revealed that the antibiotics were killing off her stomach bacteria, except for toxic strains of  E.coli, which, subsequently, was taking over.

She is now receiving doses of good bacteria, and improving.

In the summer, while still affected, she slept downstairs with R. and T., in a room with the french widow open so that she had access to the garden.

Very late one night/early morning, she tore into the garden growling and barking ferociously, and waking up R. and T. T. rushed to the door just in time to see a would be burglar scrabbling over the garden wall.

So welcome back, our park heroine. Hopefully, your physiotherapy and therapeutic swimming will soon return you to your former boisterous self.

Meanwhile, poor Albert, ‘Bertie’ to his friends, has been having his own doggie dramas.

Just before I returned to driving, poor Bertie tore a tendon in his left front leg so badly that it became completely detached from the bone.

After an operation to re-attach the muscle, his leg had to be kept straight in order to give the re-attachment a chance to work. His humans were told that the operation might not be successful, in which case amputation would be the only option.

Poor Bertie, who has exceptionally long legs, had to have a metal fixator pinned to the affected limb, from shoulder to ankle, for six weeks.

A couple of Thursdays ago it was Bertie’s big day: the fixator was to be removed. The following day we were all delighted to see him in the park for a very short walk.

He looked rather sorry for himself, and was so tired after his heroic experience that S. had to carry him back to the car.

But the operation appears to have worked!

Here’s Shaggy giving him a sympathetic nuzzle.




Rufus, Nancy, Bertie, Scamp and Shaggy




He looks much happier this week and is able to execute his signature on-the-spot dance again.

Apparently though, he almost sabotaged the whole operation the night before by falling downstairs from top to bottom and crashing into a row of aluminium frames.

We were told that S. let out a squeal of horror and rushed to the bottom of the stairs towards the canine heap, while R. reciprocated with a terrified scream before hyperventilating in the kitchen.

Bertie, having struggled to to his feet, appeared somewhat nonplussed by all the hugs and kisses bestowed upon him by his hysterical humans.




Isis came from the Aeza cat and dog rescue and adoption centre in Aljezur, Portugal. For information about adopting an animal from the centre, contact or

This entry was posted in Kings Heath Park, park dogs, the dogs of King's Heath Park, walking in the park and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to the invalids

  1. Jane says:

    Thanks for sharing this wonderful story with us xx


  2. Ian Simkin says:

    Ha ha ha, our animal buddies are a constant source of entertainment eh? – I miss having a pet, (circumstances do not allow for one at the moment), so I have to content myself with the odd afternoon taking care of my cousin’s dog 🙂


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