Monday, 25 February 2019

w/c 18th February 2019 – a very social week

 Monday 18th February

Today was a very special day for Dembe as he got to meet his number one fan Sam, along with his sister Gemma and his mum Sarah. Sarah and I used to work together many years ago, she knows both myself and Jamie, we have kept in contact via social media since I left work in 2008.

Sam is besotted by dogs and had been following Dembe through his mums Facebook account and the photos I had been sending Sarah.  As Sam is away at college during term time we had to wait for him to be home so that he could come over with his mum and sister. Apparently it was all Sam had been talking about that morning and for a few days prior. He had even brought Dembe a present which he adores and has been playing with loads.

I was a little nervous as Dembe on occasion can be boisterous like all puppies can. I think I feel the boisterousness more because I have been so used to my old doggies ( and calmer doggies) that I have forgotten what a whirlwind of energy they can be. I didn’t want him getting over excited and hurting Sam by accident. I couldn’t have been more blown away by the intelligence shown by Dembe. He was very gentle around Sam and very calm. It was as if he sensed that Sam needed that and adopted the body language and temperament to be the best pup he could. This photograph taken by Sam’s mum Sarah encapsulates the joy both of them shared on meeting.

Sam & Dembe

This makes my heart melt every time I look at it.  Dembe was very careful around Sam’s ears to ensure he didn’t interfere with his hearing aids.  I made sure that Sam got plenty of one on one time with Dembe.

Gemma was a little hesitant as she was scared of dogs but by the end of the visit was confidently approaching Dembe and petting him. It was lovely to see her confidence grow. Both Sam and Gemma asked great questions about puppies and dogs. Sam was planning what he was going to buy Dembe for Christmas even though I told him that Dembe would just like to see him. I felt very humbled.

Dembe did manage to embarrass me though as he has a bit of a humping habit and today was no exception. Which lead me having to explain it is more a dominance thing than a sexual thing at the moment. Nightmare LOL !

After all the excitement of the visit Dembe slept a lot of the afternoon

sleeping beauty

sleepy boy

He did wake up later on that afternoon and had a mad half hour playing with the toy Sam had given him.



 

I managed to capture this one of Dembe when he had just woken up from a nap.

cuteness overload

 

Tuesday 19th February

As each week passes Dembe’s character develops a little more. There isn’t a day that goes by when he doesn’t have me in stitches. Dembe wakes at 5am every morning and wants his breakfast, no matter how hard we try we can’t get him much past 5.30am. However now the little minx has access to the stairs after having his breakfast and going to the toilet he now goes back up to bed and will sleep until 06.30am – 07.00am. At least I can also get back to sleep and the 5am wake ups are no longer feeling like they are slowly killing me.

Jay took him up the common today for a run around and a chase of the ball. He loves meeting new dogs and exploring the great outdoors.

In the early afternoon I wasn’t feeling well so took myself up to bed, I was fully expecting Dembe to join me upstairs but he must have sensed I needed to rest and he stayed downstairs with Jay.  A little later on I came back downstairs, Dembe greeted me like I had been gone for days bless him.  I needed to get some sewing jobs completed so Dembe came out in the kitchen with me and slept on his bed.

Dembe is really enjoying having what we call the big boys bed downstairs to lie on, he also loves a ball that is his favourite.

 

ball

Wednesday 20th February

Dembe managed to escape out of the front door this morning. I didn’t even see him do it, I just had a feeling that he had managed to get past me and then I turned around and saw him sauntering down the drive. It was a very real heart in mouth moment. Thankfully we have worked hard on recall training from the minute he got home with us six weeks ago ( on Friday ) . I also always walk around with a pocket full of treats these days so on calling him back I was able to reward him. Even though he seemed a little annoyed that his jaunt had come to a premature end.

Its a busy week for Dembe and I as today he is meeting my best friends dog Bruce. He met Ellie a while back but she hasn’t seen him for around 3-4 weeks. Bruce is a cockerpoo who they have rehomed.

With the benefit of hindsight it would have been better to get Bruce and Dembe to meet on neutral territory. Dembe was full of himself as he was on his home turf and Bruce because this was a new house and new people / dog was feeling insecure. Unfortunately Dembe was just too much for Bruce today and was ignoring Bruce’s cues to leave him alone and back off. In order to keep the peace I had to keep Dembe on a long lead, so that I could prevent him from annoying Bruce who was finding the situation a bit stressful. Eventually both calmed down but not before I was utterly exhausted. We have arranged to meet up at the beach next week as we need to get them used to each other so we can spend time at each others houses.

Dembe’s new walking / car harness has arrived today. He really loathes his car harness and I am sure it is because it doesn’t fit properly, its huge around his chest but fits around his tummy. This new harness fits brilliantly and there is no fighting to get it on him. He also has a nasty habit of pulling on the lead especially if I am out with them on my scooter to the point where he chokes himself. I am terrified that he will pull too hard one day and manage to pop the collar – a safety device to stop him hanging himself should he jump up and catch his collar he can’t hang himself. That is another reason why I never have had any of my dogs in a collar with a buckle as they don’t have this safety feature. It’s fine if you only ever put a collar on when you are walking but all our dogs have worn collars all the time unless having a shower.

new harness (1)

new harness

 

skinned rabbit

After a visit and an escape Dembe was shattered and conked out on his big boys bed with his head on the floor. He looked like a skinned rabbit all stretched out.

Thursday 21st February

Dembe isn’t jumping up on the sofa this week, last week he managed to misjudge the distance and went bouncing off. He is jumping off ok but he is insisting on being lifted up. Today he has started jumping back up again and is doing well!

He has always been an affectionate pup but today he is being very soppy. I can’t go anywhere without being showered in kisses and given cuddles. He is such a loving pup I really couldn’t be without him. Even when he is annoying me by following me everywhere and I mean everywhere!

He met Sandra today as she popped in to see us. He was going crazy whilst Sandra was here. They were playing together and rolling the ball on the floor which he loves. I have said that we will pop up and see them next week as Jay is on holiday. Sandra did manage to terrify him by holding the paper that had just come through the door in front of him. It is hilarious at the things this dog will spook at, a folded newspaper being the funniest so far. I let him play with the paper once Sandra had left so that he could work out there was nothing to be afraid of.

Sarah came over for lunch today when Jay came back. She hasn’t seen Dembe for a few weeks and was amazed at how much he had grown. For the first time ever Dembe was interested in what someone was eating and I thought Sarah may lose her chicken sandwich if she wasn’t vigilant!

He was a very good boy today as I needed to do some sewing as I was starting to go stir crazy. He slept on his bed in the kitchen as I worked away at the machine.

Dembe did his first ever bark at the front door this evening. I heard Jays car on the drive so knew he was coming despite being in the kitchen. Dembe obviously hadn’t heard him and when he heard the front door open unexpectedly he barked. I was very proud of him, although he was soon throwing himself on Jay to let him know how much he had missed him!

that face

Friday 22nd February

Dembe is 14 weeks old today and has been home with us for 6 weeks. To be honest it feels like a lot longer. I still miss Mollie and Frankie desperately and found myself breaking down a few times this week over nothing in particular, I was just telling Dembe how much his uncle Frankie would have adored him and how much Mollie would have loved him to play with on the common. It sometimes surprises me how very raw it feels. Mollie passed away 7 weeks ago and Frankie 8 weeks ago and I miss them so very much. I am sobbing whilst writing this, I know the pain will go away at some point but I am having nightmares about their passing. It was brutal and I wouldn’t wish it on my worst enemy.

Jay took Dembe up the common this morning as he was on a late shift, we still had to rush around though as Jay had a hospital appointment to squeeze in before work as well. Jay took these shots of him yesterday, the first ones we have of him on the common.

up the common.jpeg

 

dembe on the common

Dembe was tired after his jaunt to the common so had a little nap

sleepy baby .jpg

We have noticed that since Monday Dembe has stopped humping his bed, maybe he wore himself out after Monday? Who knows but its rather nice he isn’t doing it at the moment as it does get a bit embarrassing.

However replacing the humping with jumping up is not cool either. All day at every opportunity the dog that never jumped up, jumped up. I had to stop sewing at one point as his paws can touch the edge of the kitchen table, he managed to knock a pair of scissors and a seam ripper off. I wasn’t expecting him to be able to reach that already so that was a bit of a shock!

Saturday 23rd February

I had a bit of a shock this morning as I started typing up Dembe’s diary from my notes and looked up to see this

tall boy

When did he get so big? He is so tall already. When he first came home we couldn’t see him the other side of the coffee table. When he jumped up his paws only just made it to the top of the table. In a blink of an eye he has just grown so very much. It made me chuckle to see him watching me type up his weekly exploits.

Dembe was very good today as I did a bit more sewing and cleared the decks so that I could do some embroidery on Sunday as I have been itching to stitch out a design.

Every afternoon around 3pm Dembe and I go upstairs and have a play on the bed. We have upstairs toys that consist of his baby blanket which he left the breeders with, a blue dinosaur, a huge cuddly elephant and a myriad of cardboard tubes of assorted sizes. I have a lie down to recharge my batteries whilst having a game of tug with whatever toy Dembe has taken a fancy too.

This week his lordship has developed an annoying habit of lunging on top of my keyboard when I am using it. It is very annoying as he keeps doing it at the most inopportune times, like trying to place an order or chatting to someone on messenger. He really does pick his moments.

He has also become obsessed with peoples drinks,  well really just mine. It started with every night when we go to bed licking the squash bottles my overnight drinks are kept in. ( due to various medical issues I drink litres of fluids overnight) . He would jump off the bed the minute the bottles were set down on the floor and lick them. He would even try to barge in front of me and drink from the bottle every time I tried to take a sip. Today he has been pushing his luck and has managed to knock over my can of Irn Bru not once but twice. I had just finished clearing up the lake of the orange liquid all over my coffee table and put the table runner in the wash, when he knocked it over again. He was called quite a few things and none of them were good boy Dembe. Its my fault after the first time I should have transferred the drink into a glass. And perhaps moved it further from the edge. It is hard to stay cross with him for long as he looks at you with those big brown eyes and you end up stroking him and kissing him.

Sunday 24th February

Today is the first day of Jays holiday from work. It is his first holiday from work since November. He took two weeks off work at the start of January as he was so unwell after the shock of losing the dogs so quickly. Dembe really helped him, well both of us. We would have been so lost with out him. So we have lots planned to do this week. The first job is sorting out the back garden so that it is clean and safe for Dembe to play in.

From the time Dembe came home until this morning he has been limited to our patio for playing outdoors and using as his place to go to the toilet between walks. It has been washed down every other day with Dettol and hosed down after every poo. Sorry of that is TMI. We haven’t let him explore the decking as it would have been too difficult to keep an eye on him in the middle of the night to ensure he was safe. Now he is bigger  he needs the outdoor space to explore and play in. It meant moving around some plants. We realised that we had two in the garden that could potentially cause problems if not  made difficult for him to come into contact with as they are poisonous. The other dogs never bothered with the Japonica or the Ivy, we have had them both since 2004. The Japonica is in a huge tub that is too big to get through our patio doors – it was a squeeze when the tub was empty! So to get rid of the Japonica would mean killing it, after all these years it just seems sad. So we have moved it into the far corner of the garden and put lots of smaller pots around it making it difficult to reach. As he never goes out in the garden without one of us keeping an eye on him he can’t suddenly decide to get to it come hell or high water.

The banister at the end of the garden also needed screening off. Before when we bred puppies we would put chicken wire along the banisters and attach with cable ties. It looked ugly but did the job. This time I have bought some cheap bamboo screening and we have wedged that between the banisters and the plant pots. It has actually given us some more privacy which is lovely as we are quite overlooked. So the garden is now Dembe proofed.

He has spent most of the day exploring and refusing to go to sleep. He also wouldn’t go to the toilet out there and had an accident on his new rug. I managed to pick him up just as he started – with no warning! and take him to the back door. The rug has been cleaned with biological washing liquid to breakdown the urine so it doesn’t become a favourite place to pee. Eventually though he did relent and at 16.30 he had a wee and a poo in the back garden hurrah!

Due to the fact he didn’t sleep from the minute he woke up until about 14.30, he finally collapsed as I was sat at my embroidery machine. Only he decided to turn his bed into a sleeping bag. The crafty devil managed to work out how to undo the poppers on the back and then crawled inside. We couldn’t stop laughing.

Dembe pulling out the blankets to get inside the bed

do not disturb

inside the bed

fast asleep in the bed

Dembe is cracking us up at the moment as because every time one of us goes in the freezer he dives in his crate. The reason being is I make him frozen kongs for when he goes in his crate. He goes crazy when a kong comes out and practically throws himself in the crate and spins around until he gets the kong. Jay has just got me some ice so I can have a medicinal Vodka tonic and Dembe has jumped inside his crate!

More Dembe Diaries next week, when next Saturday he has his puppy socialisation session.



Monday, 18 February 2019

w/c 11th Feb 2019 new things

 Monday 11th Feb

Today is a day of firsts – Dembe has worked out that if he pushes the patio door with his nose it will slide open. The door was slightly ajar as the patio was being washed down with the hose. The next thing we knew Dembe was trying to bite the water coming out of the hose pipe.

Then just 20 minutes later he jumped from the floor up to my lap as I was sat on the sofa. He hasn’t jumped from the floor to the sofa yet so that was a bit of a shock. Since the end of last week he has been jumping off the sofa with ease but never on it.

After a dry two weeks on the toilet training front – well we presumed dry, I caught the little bugger having a wee on the lounge rug. The annoying thing was I was just about to call him to get him out on the patio. I wasn’t impressed as the rug now needed to be cleaned with biological detergent to break down the urine so it doesn’t become a regular spot – however I might be a little late. As checking the rug that evening I discovered an even bigger wet patch. The rug has been binned RIP rug, three Weimaraners wreaked havoc on you but you couldn’t cope with a 12 week old yellow lab. It was a valiant effort but sadly not enough.

Jay brought Kat home with him for lunch today and yes she couldn’t believe how much he had grown in the last few weeks. He is still very dinky though, especially when you see him out in the real world.

His obsession today has been chasing his tail, most days at some point he will attack his own tail but today for some reason his poor tail couldn’t do anything right. Dembe was like a kid who had discovered that spinning around makes you dizzy and walk funny. I have never seen him chase his own tail as much as he did today. He has been full of beans all day. Thank goodness Jay is on an early and he will be walked this evening.

Monday morning pose
Monday morning pose

 

finally asleep
Asleep this evening – photo taken by Jamie Morris

 

Tuesday 12th February

Dembe was down on the beach at 08.30 this morning, we met a friend of ours called Richard and his dog Whisky who is a springer spaniel. Unfortunately Whisky was a bit too full on for Dembe  and he became very timid, running back to me on the slipway or hiding behind his dads legs.

I used my mobility scooter again which is just wonderful as it gives me so much freedom.

down the beach
Jay with Dembe down the beach
mobility scooter on the slipway
Me sat on my mobility scooter on the slipway

Eventually Dembe got over his nerves and got a bit braver. It seems he is happier meeting dogs in a gentle manner whilst everyone is calm or on leads. A bouncy springer that reminded me of tigger daunted him.

Dembe also got to meet my hairdresser today Rachel, he was very intrigued by the gown she put over my clothes to stop them getting covered in hair. He was very good and went to sleep on his kitchen bed whilst she worked and didn’t try to get up and play with all the hair that was on the floor.

It was a very busy day as in the afternoon I had a physio session. I can’t believe it but we got away with it again having Dembe in the waiting room. Again everyone came out to meet him. Dembe was very well-behaved and adored all the attention from the staff. My physio Jane is such a darling, as she was replacing the tissue cover on the examination couch I asked her if I could have the cardboard tube as Dembe loves chewing them. She dived out the room and came back with 3 more. So the spoilt boy has 4 to destroy.

cardboard tube from the physio

He went crazy over them when we got home, charging about all over the place.

Whilst I was in my physio session Jay took Dembe for a quick stroll around the block to ensure there were no puddles in the waiting room. He ran into a lovely lady called Lo from O and P silver, who made our needle-shaped rings. She recognised Dembe from my photo’s on Facebook before she recognised Jay.

needlering

So the little pup had a wonderful day full of adventures and cuddles.

destroying my toy box
Dembe doing his favourite thing, emptying his toy box and then chewing the inside. He killed it this week.

 

Wednesday 13th February

We are attempting to push Dembe’s wake up time to nearer 6am than the current 4.30am -5am as the wake up times are killing me and impacting my health. He is waking up because he is starving hungry typical lab. I don’t care how hungry he is 5am is not breakfast time. We are still splitting his breakfast into 2 parts to stop the choking. Breakfast is the only meal he goes totally crazy for. He is happy at every meal time but he is happy to the point of hysteria at breakfast time.

Today’s training mission is to stop his naughty habit of jumping up and throwing himself at the fridge freezer, whenever the fridge door is opened. It won’t be long and he will be tall enough to jump to the height of the bottom shelf of the fridge so it needs working on now. It is a behaviour that has come out of nowhere, so needs stamped on now. I am also working on being able to open the front door without him charging for it.

Both training sessions went well and I was able to open the front door without having to pick him up. Believe me he needs to learn this fast as he is getting so heavy and I am going through quite a difficult time with my back so I don’t need any additional strain placed on it. I really wouldn’t be surprised if he was around the 8 kilo mark now. He will be weighed in 2 weeks so it will be interesting to see how much weight he has put on in 4 weeks.

The training with the fridge door is going well, even though he still runs into the kitchen when the fridge is opened he is now sitting and waiting and no longer throwing himself at the door. To assist with training I am walking around with a pocket full of treats so that I can be timely with his rewards. He is so switched on that he is a joy to work with however because he is so easy to work with its easy to move on too quickly when you think the problem has been sorted. So I am determined to keep up with both bits of training as they are equally as important as each other.

Dembe was made famous today as his photo’s were shown on TV today on the Sewing Quarter channel 687 on Sky ( you can also watch live on YouTube and Freeview) .



 

Thursday 14th February

Dembe didn’t wake up until 5.40am this morning which felt like a lie on! It is the first time in weeks he has slept so late. He was taken out at 12.30am for his last toilet trip ( we go to bed very early) which as usual was a success. He woke me up this morning by smothering me in kisses. He is such an affectionate loving boy.

As Jay is on late night he took him up on to the common for a run around, I stayed in the car as I was still exhausted after Tuesday. Dembe loves having a large open space to run around in and chase after a ball. He loves exploring a new environment. He was a little muddy when we got home so his legs were washed off and his belly was given a wipe down. He is so good I know the Weimaraner pups would never have put up with that but he just sits there happy with you doing whatever you need.

I had a bit of a shock today as Dembe jumped up at the baby gate that is blocking off the stairs and his paws can sit on the top of it. He is just growing up way too fast. In the space of nearly 5 weeks he has just shot up his legs are longer, his body is longer his snout is longer. He is still dinky, you can really see how small he is when outside but inside he is looking enormous especially when his head is level with the lounge coffee table.

chewing his cardboard tube
enjoying his cardboard tube from my physiotherapist
cuddled up to my snuggle topIMG_20190213_092112_547.jpg
Cuddled up with my snuggle top
my view every time I go to the toilet
My view every time I go to the bathroom!

on my bed day time rest

As I was so tired after Tuesday we had our first ever upstairs afternoon lie down for an hour. Due to Dembe needing out frequently I have been having my lie downs on the sofa until today. I wanted to see how he would cope so I set my alarm for an hours time and had a lie down. He entertained himself, no accidents and snuggled in with me. So I know now if I am having a very rough day he will come back up to bed without too many problems.

Friday 15th February

As I said on Monday it was a day of firsts and today was no different. Dembe has learned how to jump up on the sofa unaided. I was in the kitchen and it had got suspiciously quiet, I came into the lounge and saw Dembe curled up on the sofa asleep. I also knew I hadn’t left him there, by the time I got my phone out to take a photo he had woken up. It now means nothing  is safe .got up on the sofa unaided

Later on in the morning he jumped up beside me again unaided so it wasn’t a one off.

on the sofa beside me

I needed to take something upstairs and normally I would lock the baby gate behind me and within 30 seconds Dembe would be whingeing. Today I decided to do a little experiment , I left Dembe on the sofa and went upstairs leaving the baby gate open, dead silence, no whinging, I did this several more times during the day and there was still no whinging. It was obviously the physical barrier that was upsetting him as without it there was no crying and yet he didn’t even attempt to get upstairs. It maybe time to remove the babygate and see how we get on.

I decided to do some embroidery on my machine this afternoon, normally Dembe would follow me into the kitchen and put himself to bed. However today he decided to stay put on the sofa with his head on the arm so that he could keep an eye on me just like his uncle Frankie used to.

watching me whilst in the kitchen

I can’t believe he is 13 weeks old today and has been home with us for 5 weeks now. He is such a huge part of our lives.

Saturday 16th February

Jay was late night again today so we took Dembe up to the common for a run around . I stayed in the car as I have woken up with a headache and vertigo.  Dembe thoroughly enjoyed his walk and was playing with other dogs, which is a relief as I thought maybe he had suddenly become frightened of other dogs after reacting the way he did on Tuesday. But he is fine and is being a lot braver with every meeting.

Today Dembe decided to channel Satan again, barking and growling was immense fun and he was doing it to inanimate objects and humans. He was also over excited all day which meant he was jumping up and nipping inappropriately at the small humans we had here. Thankfully he didn’t bite them, I was mortified and had to give him a time out in the kitchen to calm down, which he was shocked at because I have never removed him from a room completely. He did calm down and was allowed back in. The time out seemed to stop the barking also.

It was a day of many visitors, before the day’s end we had another 4 people visit us and Dembe kept getting over excited which resulted in him being removed from the situation. Every time someone went to stroke his head yesterday it was seen as an opportunity to chew their fingers. If someone ignored him he started barking at them. It made me a bit sad that he was being naughty but he is a baby and he is testing the boundaries .  I am stopping the behaviour before it escalates by removing him and allowing him to calm down. He is very good when I put him behind the baby gate as he just sits and watches and doesn’t make a sound.

With other things he is doing really well, he now no longer jumps at the fridge when we open the door and he sits patiently waiting when Jay puts his lead on. He will also wait when I open the front door and allow visitors in or take in deliveries. It is amazing when you have been used to dogs that went mental when the door went and had to be shut in the kitchen when visitors arrived. Everyone has their off days and I think yesterday was one of those for  him.

We decoded to remove the baby gate yesterday at the bottom of the stairs to see how we would get on without it there and if he would go upstairs if he had the opportunity. He wasn’t interested and only attempted to go upstairs once and was quickly dissuaded when I told him no.  We have had to move our large wicker basket up into my room as it would just be too tempting for him to use as a chew toy.

Sunday 17th February

Dembe woke me up at 5.30am this morning but as I was asleep before 8pm last night ( shattered after all the visitors) it didn’t feel too bad. Dembe woke me with a whiney yawn he had obviously been awake for a little while and all other attempts to rouse me had failed.

By 7.45am we were down the beach, it never ceases to amaze me how busy the seafront is all day long. Dembe loves the beach and meeting new dogs and there were plenty of them this morning. He is getting much braver with meeting new dogs and Jay is really good handling those situations. I would be terrified my immediate urge is to pick him up – which is awful as I am miles away from him on the slipway, I watch holding my breath. Jay just gets on his haunches and pets the dog that has come over for a sniff and makes a fuss of them. Left to me I’d have picked him up and run away. At least with Jay being so confident Dembe doesn’t pick up on any fear.

He has been pretty tired since his walk this morning and has been sleeping either on the sofa beside me or on the dogs bed I made for our Weimaraners.

Sunday Dembe

And yes that is my slipper behind him!

The rest of his day has been spent sleeping, he is obviously having another growth spurt or he wore himself out yesterday with all his exuberance. We were planning on having a quiet day today as Jay and I both needed to recharge our batteries, so with Dembe being so tired it has worked to our advantage.

Next week will be fun, on Monday he will be meeting his admirer Sam who is on half term from College and then on Wednesday my best friend Ellie will be bringing her dog up (Bruce) to meet Dembe.

Have a great week everyone xxx



Week Commencing 4th October 2021

 I have been really rubbish at keeping Dembe's diary up to date this week. Think it was still all the stress from the vets the previous ...