a dog, a cat, a taxi and me

 

 

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

 

Wednesday October 10th 2018

 

It’s four o’clock on Monday morning. Isis is sleeping soundly downstairs. Daisy lies purring on my chest. She’s pleased that I’m awake. A cat enjoys a bit of attention in the early hours.

I’m not at all pleased, just damned tired. And anxious about tomorrow.

This is the thing: Daisy has only two thyroid tablets left. Hairy One’s anal glands are desperately in need of attention, and we still have no car, so we’re going to the R.S.P.C.A. in a T.O.A. animal friendly taxi.

Now, in days gone by, first border collie Feather and later terrier cross Ellie travelled happily to New Street Station in T.O.A. taxis and always behaved perfectly.

No worries there then. But we’re talking about Isis and Daisy,

 

 

 

 

 

so plenty of worries this time, hence I lie awake, foolishly running through all the possible disastrous scenarios.

So who should I put in the taxi first?

 

It has to be Daisy, of course, as Isis is sure to panic if I leave her in the taxi while I go and fetch Daisy.

O.K.

My left shoulder is still healing so I’ll not be able to lift Isis into the taxi. What if she refuses to get in? What if she growls and barks when she smells a driver she doesn’t know? What if she harasses poor Daisy for the whole of the half hour journey? What if she refuses to stay sitting down and I have to hold on to her at the same time as preventing the cat carrier from sliding around the taxi floor?

Another thing – she’s always very resistant to walking the last few yards to the door of the animal hospital, and requires much cajoling. It’s going to be very difficult to persuade her to walk while I’m carrying Daisy.

Oh my dog! She’ll smell of anal glands on the journey back. Better pack plenty of wipes and some dog deodorant.

And then there’s Daisy. You can’t take a cat to its litter tray and tell it to “Go now because it’ll be a long time before you get another chance.” As all cat owners know, there’s no way you can disguise a kitty poop in an enclosed space like a taxi.

I have alarming fantasies about the driver evicting the three of us from the taxi half way to Frankley Green.

Of course, Daisy might spend the journey hissing and growling at Isis. That’s less likely though. She’s always silent when she’s nervous. The poop scenario is much more likely.

My brain runs through all the stuff I’ll need to take with me. It’s a long list:

disposable gloves, a roll of kitchen towels, a black bin back, anti-stench spray and spare puppy training pads to reline Daisy’s carrier if the worst comes to the worst

a bottle of water, cloths, deodorant, an old sheet for Isis to lie on in transit, and where did I put her safety harness and the attachment which fits into the safety belt clip?

I finally drop off shortly before five a.m. and the taxi will arrive at eight thirty.

Eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeek!

 

This nail-biting drama will be continued.

 

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 kerry@aeza.org or  www.dogwatchuk.co.uk

Posted in a vet visit, Isis and Daisy, RSPCA | Tagged , , , , , , | 6 Comments

death of a lawn

 

 

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

 

Sunday October  7th 2018

 

There are times when even the most dedicated procrastinator feels the need to act. Apparently, I hear, ’tis the season for resuscitating one’s lawn. This must be true, because when Isis and I arrive at Kings Heath Park on Friday, the gardeners are re- seeding the bald patches on the bowling green.

I watch, ask questions and learn.

When we reach home, I take a long look at my back garden.

This is not an inspiring experience.

Isis has danced away half of the grass. Every time she spends time there, another square metre is threatened with extinction.

 

 

 

It is imperative, I decide, to act before the entire ‘lawn’ has gone.

Sigh.

“You’ve got the loam, you’ve got the fertiliser, you’ve got the seed and you know what to do”, I tell myself. “Just do it.”

I unweave all the long grass from the plastic mesh. (Yes, I know there is no such word as ‘unweave’ but I think it helps to convey the painstaking nature of the task.)

It’s very hard work but, cunningly, I enlist Hairy One’s help. As I expect, she continuously challenges my right to exclude her from the bottom part of the garden, and thus reveals the sections of the fence which need strengthening.

Effortlessly, she ducks under one end of the fence and pops up on the other side of the buddleia. I move that end of the fence to a thick bramble patch. Yes!

She topples one of the black plastic tubes on her side of the barrier. I transfer all of the tubes to the other side. Yes!

She pushes against the fence and down goes another tube. I heave a large, heavy pot full of soil into each tube. Yes!

She paws vigorously at another section which wobbles and bends just enough for a determined dog to clamber over. I place three garden chairs at strategic places between the tubes. Yes?

I retreat to the house and wait.

Snake in mouth, she investigates the length of the fence

 

 

 

from end to end

 

 

 

before, eventually, giving up.

 

 

 

Then she lies down looking depressed and stares through the wire at her favourite playground.

I feel quite guilty, but she soon sniffs out a snake and carries it off.

Now I have to move on to the next stage.

Oh dear. It’s all action.

S-i-i-i-i-igh.

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

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 kerry@aeza.org or  www.dogwatchuk.co.uk

Posted in deaf/blind dog plays, dear little Isis, Isis at home | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

who have we here, then?

 

 

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

 

Wednesday October 3rd 2018

 

Perhaps I should move house and live round the corner on Morrison Road. This would solve the problem of getting Isis past her no-go locations: the driveway of the lane and that of a house where there’s building work going on and a skip in the front garden.

For now though, I’m relieved to have found at least a temporary solution. Twice now, I have persuaded the Hairy One to cross the road outside our house, walk as far as Morrison Road and then cross back again. She has a few doubts along the way, but one or two judicious tugs and under-the- chin taps get her going again.

No doubt she’ll soon realise what I’m up to, and refuse to cross the road. But on Tuesday it works, helped along by a consistently dull day, and we actually get to the park.

 

 

It’s worth the effort. On reaching the colour garden, she bursts delightedly into action, twirling among the shrubs. As a number of people have said, it’s uplifting to watch her.

Then M. and C. arrive with their pretty young chihuahuas Tiger -Lily

 

 

 

and Gizmo.

 

 

I’ve not come across chihuahuas with their colouring before. They are striking, very beautiful, and  very affectionate, although, I am told, they are also very bossy at home.

Although M. has met Isis many times in the park and at home, he’s not seen her off her lead before.

“Where’s Isis”, he asks, looking puzzled.

When I point out the cavourting creature, his jaw drops. He recalls when he first saw her – a very frightened little dog who was panic stricken when other people or dogs approached her. He speaks of miracles.

As he speaks, The Miracle emerges from under a potentilla and trots happily by them without a care in the world

Although Gizmo is apt to see other dogs off, and Tiger-Lily to flirt with them, they don’t bother Isis.

They come up to meet me and I have a great time making a fuss of the dear little creatures.

While Isis plays on. And on. And on.

Bless her.

 

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 kerry@aeza.org or  www.dogwatchuk.co.uk

Posted in deaf/blind dog plays, dear little Isis, I'm off my lead!, Kings Heath Park, running running, the dogs of King's Heath Park, walking in the park, walking my deaf/blind dog | Tagged , , , , , , | 2 Comments

the case of the vanishing cat

 

 

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

 

September 30th 2018

 

Last week was a bad weather week for Isis. Here’s a summary:

Monday’s bright but the ground is still wet, so she can’t walk out or  play in the garden. I take her into the lane.

Tuesday’s also bright but not as soggy as Monday. Isis plays in garden but finds a squishy ball so by the time she is brought in, her hairy front feet, her legs and her jaws are caked in mud.

I begin with her right leg. She utters a threatening growl. I express my displeasure with a loud, deep growl of my own. After this, she restrains herself but keeps twitching out the foot which I have placed in the bowl. I resort to holding up the other foot. After a few minutes of this, she sensibly places the other foot in the bowl too. Good move, Hairy One.

A great improvement. As you may remember, she used to kick the bowl of water up in the air and bite my hand and her own foot.

Wednesday is very bright, sunny and warm. So warm, in fact, that I leave the back door open from 11.00 a.m. until early evening while Isis plays in garden. She pops in at 5.45. She hopes that her tea is ready. It isn’t. She lies on the day bed for about ten minutes, then returns to the garden.

She comes back in at 6.45 and eats. I pop upstairs to check whether Daisy needs more food.

I survey the bed, as usual, looking for a tell-tale Daisy shaped mound. I always poke the mound very gently with my finger and she responds with a delightful little ‘Purrrrp !’

But today there is no purrrrp.

There’s no mound. I tear off the duvet.

There’s no Daisy.

Oh my dog!

 

 

 

 

I search under the bed, in the wardrobe, the bathroom and my art room. No sign of a cat.

Oh my dog! Daisy must have nipped out of the back door. I rush into the back garden and call,

‘Daisy!’ ‘Daisy!’ ‘DAISY!’ D—-AI—-ZEEEEEEEEE!’

I call her name over and over again.

Not a sound. Not even a rustle.

I pelt up the hall, fling open the door of the porch and shoot through the gate. Thank goodness, no flattened cat in the road or on the pavement. No sign of her in any of the front gardens either. And no response to my increasingly desperate shrieks.

I rush upstairs again and search even more thoroughly. I return downstairs and examine every possible – and impossible – place where a small cat could be hidden. Then I bellow and screech outside again.

When I return from the front for the second time, I am very worried. What the hell has happened to little Daisy? What on earth will I say to Polymath when I visit her tomorrow? What if she phones me tonight?

I can feel the tension rising from my gut to my throat. I drag myself back to upstairs, and glance miserably at the bed.

I can’t believe it.

 

 

 

 

There’s a long, thick, black tail protruding from the top edge of the duvet. I’ve caught her in the act of tunnelling back under it.

Has she been outside?

I carefully scoop her out. Yes, her usually very warm little paws are stone cold, and at the base of her tail is a cluster of grass seeds.

“And where”, I ask her, plucking the seeds from her fur, “did these come from?”

She blinks.

 

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 kerry@aeza.org or  www.dogwatchuk.co.uk

Posted in deaf/blind dog plays, dear little Isis, Isis and Daisy, Isis at home, we don't like bright sun | Tagged , , , , | 6 Comments

a brave little dog

 

 

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

 

Wednesday September 26th 2018

 

Last week was brilliant. It hardly stopped raining and we walked to the park almost every day.

But Sunday is a sun-suddenly-popping-out day, which usually frightens the life out of poor Isis; strangely, though, she is keen to go out, walks hopefully to the front door and doesn’t balk when we get to the gate.

Much to my surprise, she only comes to a halt twice, is soon persuaded to walk on, and, afterwards, settles to a steady pace – interspersed, naturally, with enthusiastic sniffing and  scenting.

Once we reach the park, the sun decides to stay out. As always, the contrasting areas of light and shade worry Isis. Her tail droops and her ears flatten against her head. She doesn’t want to linger on the lower bowling green. She doesn’t even head to her colour garden.

Instead, she veers off to the left, weaving her way through the pines, and makes her way cautiously along the fence of the old T.V. Garden. Halfway along the fence she pauses until I am close enough to check in with her, then trots off towards the little woodland area.

 

 

 

Clever little animal. It’s shady here, safe for a dog. Tail now held high, she explores mammal trails, crawls under and between the trees and bushes, and sniffs to her heart’s content.

We stay in the wood until it’s time to leave. Then, as always, I lay my hand on her back, she stops to let me replace her harness and then sets off happily by my side.

You chose well todaylittle Hairy One.

 

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 kerry@aeza.org or  www.dogwatchuk.co.uk

Posted in clever Isis, I'm off my lead!, Kings Heath Park, walking my deaf/blind dog | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

all shook up

 

 

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

 

Wednesday September 19th 2018

 

Today gale force winds are hitting north western areas of Britain and we have the tail end here in the West Midlands. Isis frisks around joyfully in her garden. She’s been out there for almost two hours.

I check on her again from the back window, then glance out of the front door.

The hazel and the overgrown buddleia look as though they’re frantically waving for help and an abandoned plastic food container is bowling along the main road.

Time to fetch her. She loves the wildness of the wind, but, as usual, unless something has upset her, she is very good about coming in, and, after the usual little taps, she trots towards the house in front of me and pops inside.

For weeks now I’ve noted that her bed needs a wash. Its lovely fleecy white lining is pale brown with muddy paw marks and it doesn’t smell very fragrant either.

O.K. today’s the day.

I remove the inner pillow. Noting that the memory foam chips it contains are crumbly and likely to spill out, I carefully place it on a chair high up on top of a pile of boxes, well out of Hairy One’s reach.

I stuff the bed into the washing machine.

It’s turning out to be a week of sorting dog affairs, I reflect with a deep sigh. All her dog towels are drying in the bathroom but there’s nowhere to put them as their container is bursting with plastic bags and old sheets (useful for protecting the rug when Isis is damp and muddy).

Must be the main reason for avoiding housework: whatever you do has a knock-on effect.

Rashly, I empty the container onto the kitchen floor. Oh horror!

 

 

 

 

 

At this point, Isis emerges from the back room. She looks different, somehow. She has little bits of foam in her hair  …….

Oh.

I shoot into the back room. The ‘out of her reach’ pillow, of course,  is no longer on the chair.

Silly me.

 

 

 

 

“Oh, Isis! Thanks a million for your help”, I murmur.

But she merely lies by the front door looking miffed.

 

 

 

 

What has Human done with her bed?

 

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 kerry@aeza.org or  www.dogwatchuk.co.uk

Posted in deaf/blind dog plays, Isis at home | Tagged , , | 6 Comments

y-a-a-a-a-a-a-a-wn

 

 

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

 

Sunday September 16th 2018

 

Lucky today. Ji. is just finishing cutting back the brambles, teasels and unidentified shrub which I planted in the front garden years ago, having mistaken it as a cutting for an ornamental orange blossom.

Isis is dancing and playing with a ball in the back garden where she’s been for at least two hours.

While Hairy One cavorts in the garden, Daisy has some quality time downstairs contentedly sitting on my lap.

And all this before the rain begins.

Excellent.

It’s pleasant to sit in the front room with plenty of light and minus the shrub’s maniacal fingers drumming on the glass.

Only one fly in the ointment, and it’s a whopping, hairy, white bluebottle of a fly too: I’ve had to recommence dog’s dining room training.

My (very bored) long-term blog readers may recall that after months and months of work, Isis was finally able to eat without caterwauling, screeching, barking, snapping and leaping at imaginary marauders whom she was convinced were hellbent on snatching her meal.

For a couple of years, quiet reigned in the dining room. B blips were rare.

Unfortunately, after Isis was left at Ray’s Hollytrees kennels for three weeks while I was ill last Autumn, she resumed her bad habit.

After more weeks of effort, her rages subsided considerably, but did not completely stop.

I should have known better, having been an inner city secondary school teacher for thirteen years, and having looked after cats and dogs for even longer. Unless unwanted behaviour is eradicated, it will resurface.

I blush to think about the pompous and smug post I wrote on July 18th this year. Embarrassingly, I ended it with

“You’ve come a long way, little Isis”, I tell her. “We can put up with a bark or two.”

Unfortunately, the bark or two escalated, and while friend A. looked after Isis and Daisy when I was away in August, she reported that there was not one quiet mealtime.

Regressed dog. Stupid Human.

We must begin again.

Sigh.

So we resume our training. Again, as soon as she emits a bark, I remove her food. Without exception. At least this time round she only requires one removal per meal. She protests noisily, of course. Once she is calm and quiet again, the dish is returned and she eats without any vocals.

So far, she has had her meal removed every breakfast time, but her manners have been perfect at teatime. Strange. Never mind, it’s progress.

Yesterday she managed to eat both meals without interruption.

Dog, it’s wearing. But I can never get away with ‘can’t be bothered’ where Isis is concerned. She is the living  epitome of the expression ‘Give an inch and he’ll take an ell.’

Hmmmm. You’d not believe this to look at her.

Here she is, at this very moment, the subject of this monologue, sleeping angelically. Like most dogs and cats, she always makes a beeline for my place on the day bed. It’s not possible, I think, for her to squirm herself any further into my end.

Note her unoccupied dog blanket in the background.

 

 

 

 

 

Oh. It’s six p.m. Let’s see what happens. There’s sardine with her biscuits tonight. She’ll definitely be tempted to defend that.

I serve her meal and exit the kitchen.

I wait.

Eventually, there’s a subdued ‘woof, woof.’

I hurry into the kitchen.

No, all is well. She’s just announcing that she’s finished. She’s standing by her licked clean dish looking content.

Excellent.

Just breakfast to conquer, then – as long as I don’t leave her in the kennels again.

 

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 kerry@aeza.org or  www.dogwatchuk.co.uk

Posted in food rage, Isis and Daisy, Isis at home, Isis is no angel | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

a silly dog day

 

 

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

 

Wednesday September 12th 2018

 

After Sunday’s challenging exit from Kings Heath Park, Isis walks home like the perfect dog.

It soon transpires, though, that this display of canine perfection is only put on to lull me into a false sense of security. In reality, she has decided that it’s silly dog day.

My latest compromise with her over bad behaviour in her dining room isn’t working.

I give her her tea – biscuits and a raw egg – and retreat up the hall to let her eat in peace.

Peace? I delude myself. She waits until I disappear into the front room, begins to eat, counts twenty and barks loudly. She then gobbles down as much food as she can before I return and remove her tea.

She is not pleased.

The following is an unusually brief example of her outrage. Perhaps she doesn’t wish to show herself up.

 

 

 

 

 

 

After fifteen minutes, I return her dish and she munches angelically until she has finished.

We have a reasonably peaceful evening and I let her out for her last garden visit of the day.

Unfortunately, while she is out, there’s a sudden deluge so that when she returns her paws are covered in churned up mud.

She makes an escape bid and shoots into her bed; but wicked Human follows with a towel and begins GENTLY cleaning her filthy little feet.

As I tackle her front paws, she begins to grumble. I tap her on her back with two reprimanding fingers. But when I tackle her back feet, all hell breaks loose. She twirls and snaps viciously at her feet.

Sometimes when she has these outbursts, I can stop her by standing so close that she doesn’t have room to whirl. But not today. She whizzes around so fast that she bangs herself against my legs and a nearby chair, teeth firmly gripping one back foot.

In desperation, I push my good arm through the middle of the spinning, white, hairy doughnut and lift it up.

I want to stop her biting herself and my options are limited.

Not a good idea. On previous occasions, for example, when she has been trapped in a nightmare and I’ve unable to get through to her, holding her has eventually calmed her down.

But not tonight. She continues to spin in my arms like a furry catherine wheel. I return her to her bed where she completes a few more spins before sitting down for a growly snap or two.

I’ve no idea what has set her off. She doesn’t like her legs being washed or dried, of course, but it’s a very long time since she’s freaked out like this.

Usually her bedtime treats are already ‘hidden’ for her to find when she comes in from the garden but Human has been slow off the mark tonight and hasn’t done them yet.

No, that can’t be it. She’s not responded like this before.

I leave her to calm down.

When I return about thirty minutes later, she’s on the day bed. I distribute the treats around the room as usual.

She shows not the slightest interest.

I put a treat under her nose. She turns her head away. She doesn’t even bother to give it a sniff.

Next morning the two gravy bones left on her pillow have gone but all the other treats are still where I left them.

But when I put my hand by her nose to announce my arrival, she wags her tail happily and accepts hugs and kisses.

Obviously today is another day.

 

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 kerry@aeza.org or  www.dogwatchuk.co.uk

Posted in a very naughty dog, food rage, Isis at home, Kings Heath Park, self-damaging, self-harming, strange behaviour, twirling | Tagged , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

rebel without a cause?

 

 

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

 

Sunday September 9th 2018

 

Two lovely, damp, gloomy weekend days, with light showers on Saturday. Lovely Isis weather. So on both days we walk to the park.

Isis, somewhat deprived as she’s been, of street smells, proceeds very slowly and is soon only capable of gestural pees.

It takes us thirty five minutes to reach the park. I estimate that we’ll take about twenty five minutes on our return journey and decide that with walking both ways, Isis should be well exercised if she has about thirty five minutes off lead to play.

She runs around gleefully, after which I re-harness her as usual and off we set. Or, to be more accurate, off I set. I am immediately brought up short. Isis is sitting down with a distinctly uncooperative expression on her face.

Oh. This is very unusual. Refusing to walk to the park yes. Refusing to walk in the direction I’ve chosen, yes, but refusing to leave the park?

I allow her to choose which way to go. She makes it crystal (as our politicians appear impelled to say) clear that she doesn’t wish to move in any direction, thank you.

And she won’t.

I sign ‘walk on’. I pat her encouragingly. I stand still and wait. And wait. And wait. I examine her feet to see if there’s anything sticking in her pad or between her toes. Nothing. I feel her carefully all over. Nothing. I give gentle, then less gentle tugs on her lead.

Finally, I stride on, bearing her weight on the running belt around my waist.

She protests by digging her heels firmly into the ground.

I imagine the headlines in Dogs’ Daily: cruel human seen dragging innocent dog across Kings Heath Park………………further enquiries reveal that this poor little dog is not only much smaller than her aggressor, but is also deaf and blind ……….

We eventually leave the park. Isis twice sits down on the pavement, but then gives up and walks calmly home.

I am still concerned that I may have missed something, but a further careful examination reveals no obvious reason for her behaviour.

And, judging by the way she leaps ecstatically in the muddy garden later in the evening, there is no obvious reason.

Today, she walks eagerly to the park again. No hesitation at all.

I can only conclude that she wished to stay in the park yesterday, that thirty-five minutes didn’t feel enough time.

I am free this evening, so she can play off lead for her usual hour.

After she has run around joyfully for her hour, I walk carefully into the big shrubbery and tap her back. As usual, she makes her way out and stands still so that I can put her back into her harness.

Yes, she looks ready to go …………………………

 

 

 

 

…… sort of.

 

 

Oh.

I wait for a minute or too.

Perhaps she needs a rest.

 

 

 

Or not.

 

Dogs’ Daily, Sunday Edition: Once again, it has been reported that ………………

 

At least today the little  *^@  has the grace to walk properly once we approach the park gate.

Isis, Isis.

What more can I say?

 

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 kerry@aeza.org or  www.dogwatchuk.co.uk

 

Posted in a very naughty dog, deaf/blind dog plays, I'm off my lead!, Kings Heath Park, running running, strange behaviour, walking in the park, walking my deaf/blind dog | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

where’s the car?

 

 

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

 

Wednesday September 5th 2018

 

Thank you for all the lovely comments made on Hairy One’s gotcha day post, and apologies to Isabel whom I forgot was the volunteer who went to collect Isis.

I am very grateful for the dry weather which makes it possible for Isis to play in the garden. Although we have managed to walk to Kings Heath Park three times over the last ten days, it’s not been easy to persuade her that yes, it’s definitely what she most wants to do.

Even though we only attempt the walk on damp, cloudy days, on one of these  three outings she spends  almost all of her off the lead time sitting morosely under the fir tree in her favourite Colour Garden shrubbery.

Perhaps the light isn’t quite right.

On a bright day, of course, I’ve no chance of persuading her to move  more than a few yards from the  gate.

But even when it’s sunny, she’ll allow herself to be nudged out onto the pavement so that she can walk smartly to the space where the car used to be parked.

Once there, she sniffs around where the car doors should be and looks depressed. Then she tugs me urgently back towards the gate.

She loves going in the car. Poor Isis. Where has that car gone?

To the car’s graveyard, I’m afraid. I kept it running by filling up the coolant tank every other day – or every day if we we ventured further than a couple of miles away.

I managed to persuade it to take us to the R.S.P.C.A. for Hairy One’s anal glands to be dealt with and to collect two month’s supply of Daisy’s thyroid tablets, two days before my shoulder operation. But its head gasket was on its way out and would have cost £6oo.00 to replace as the engine would have had to be stripped down.

The car was over nineteen years old and, unsurprisingly, was becoming tired of life. The starter motor also needed replacing: the spring which returns the key to a neutral position had broken and unless I remembered to return the key manually, on starting, the engine emitted a ear piercing screech which could be heard well down the road. The sunroof was on its last legs and one of the windows wasn’t working. Its worst rust patch was kept in place with duct tape.

I’m hoping to replace it with a small vehicle not quite so old, as soon as I am able to drive again.

C. , the garage owner, asks me if there are any colours I really couldn’t stand. Not pink or purple, I tell him. And most certainly not lavender. I may be old, but I don’t want to look like the opening scene of ‘Miss Marple’s Last Case.’

Isis will not get into a car which she doesn’t know, unless I’m already sitting in it. If I’m on my own when she’s introduced to her little Hyundai i10, I’ll have to fill it with stuff which smells of us.

Then off we’ll go to Highbury again!

 

 

 

 

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 kerry@aeza.org or  www.dogwatchuk.co.uk

 

 

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