Monday, 26 October 2020

W/C 19th October 2020

 Monday 19th October

Well surprise, surprise Jay is on an early shift today. When I woke up Dembe wasn’t on the bed with me. I found him curled up on his dad’s bed snuggled into his dressing gown. We had a lovely cuddle before we went downstairs.

Dembe decided to join me in the shower this morning for the first time in ages.

He got drenched!

His personalised mat arrived today, he seemed totally nonplussed and was much more interested in the packaging it came in.

Dembe is still sleeping right beside me on the bed at night. He wedges himself against my left leg in exactly the same position his uncle Frankie did.

Tuesday 20th October

Well Dembe and I were all confused today as Jay was working this morning ( he had the afternoon off ). He had a meeting at another store, so it was just me and Dembe this morning.

Chewing a cows ear Monday evening

We are finding since we switched to only feeding Dembe when he is actively showing us he is hungry has stopped meal times becoming a battle ground. He lets us know he is hungry by sitting in front of the fridge, if you give him a cocktail sausage he isn’t interested in it. That is when you know he wants his breakfast or dinner. If you feed him at any other time he will either a) walk away from eat not eating anything or b) eat a few mouthfuls and drop most of it on the floor. This way the bowl is spotlessly clean! It is also much less stressful.

He is an incredibly cuddly boy today, he is wanting me to hold his cows ear whilst he chews it.

We had the last training session this evening for this block of 6. We start again back on 3rd November.

For the first 20 minutes of the lesson Dembe was messing around, easily distracted and refusing to do a stay. He can do a stay standing on his head so why he decided tonight he wouldn’t I have no idea. Then all of a sudden he just switched on and was an absolute angel.


This was the first time the whole group had ever done this exercise and they all did brilliantly.


Wednesday 21st October

OMG Dembe slept until 7.20am , absolutely unheard of. Jay and I had to check the time as we couldn’t believe the lie on that we got.

The weather is absolutely horrendous, torrential rain. So Dembe’s Ruff & Tumble drying coat got it’s first outing.

We purchased the coat a few weeks ago and have been waiting for the time when the weather was bad that he would need to wear it to dry off. All I can say is WOW it made it much quicker for him to dry off, he liked wearing it and no wet dog draped over my lap when he decided that he wanted up on my lap which is a frequent occurrence even at 35kg.

He look so cute in it.

Jay is a late night shift today, as Dembe has refused to poo on the last few walks I decided that I would start playing with him at 2pm to ensure he would want to go whilst he was out. He was fast asleep.

To get him immediately engaged we played find it but instead of playing using one of his toys I played using dog treats. He was very keen to play that game. He is getting so good at finding the treats. I have been putting them in harder and harder places and he really engages with his nose now and searches properly. One of my favourite places to hide treats is under cushions or pillows. He looks like a proper search dog the way he lifts the cushions up with his nose and gets the treat.

He got a bit muddy on his walk, Martin ( our dog walker ) managed to get the worst off before Dembe came home. So it was time for the ruff and tumble dog coat again.

Dembe was shattered and settled down really quickly this evening.

Thursday 22nd October

I wasn’t very good with neck and back pain so we had a quiet day today. Jay worked a few hours in the morning and then had the rest of the day off.

We got our car back from the garage today, Dembe loves the new car and always lies down in the back of it.

Friday 23rd October

Jay is on a 12-9 shift so Dembe went out twice this morning before Jay went to work. It was Martin’s birthday today so Dembe went out early this afternoon and had the company of a dog called Taxi.

Photo credit Happy Dogs

They look deep in conversation on their walk. Dembe didn’t poo, mainly because he was asleep when Martin arrived and I hadn’t got him up in time and playing games.

Jay had to pop home just after 5pm to whizz Dembe around the block. Dembe had a huge poo so just as well his dad popped home for him.

We had a lazy afternoon with lots of cuddles

Dembe was shattered so I managed to get up to bed well before 7pm and have a much needed early night.

Saturday 24th October

Dembe was a very cuddly boy today and wanted to be wherever I was.

The crochet inspector is back!

Dembe was a happy bunny today as his dad was on an early shift so was home just after 4pm.

Sunday 25th October

The clocks went back last night but unfortunately Dembe’s didn’t, we were woken up just after 4am by a little someone crying to go out. After he had been out with Jay he was happy to settle down and go back to sleep. Not waking us up again until gone 9am as he wanted his breakfast.

Leanne and Liam popped in to see us today. Dembe adores Liam and they played together. Dembe getting jealous when Liam was on my lap having a cuddle. They had come over as Liam’s school bag was broken and his mum wanted to know if I would be able to fix it – which of course I can. I had a lovely bunch of roses from them.

Dembe was shattered after the visit!

Monday, 19 October 2020

W/C 12th October 2020


Monday 12th October

As usual, even I get bored of this sentence, Jay was on an early shift today. Dembe stayed downstairs which he does occasionally. When I came down I found him on the small sofa curled up on my electric throw. All the previous dogs loved the heated throw and whenever I use it Dembe always gives it a good sniff. It was odd seeing him in the corner on it as normally he sleeps on the side nearest the front door or on the big sofa, snuggled on his dads dressing gown.

I was really slow to get ready this morning so our normal routine was all out of whack. Dembe though was more than happy to follow my lead.

Dembe with his Monkey

We were entertained this evening by Dembe crawling all over Jay, who was shattered after the early start and wanted to lie down on the sofa. Dembe saw that as an invitation to lie on top of his dad and have a cuddle. I swear he thinks he is a puppy still. I don’t know how but at 35kg he never seems that heavy, I think it is because he is so long.

Tuesday 13th October

As usual Jay is day off today. On Tuesdays and Sunday’s Dembe is always a very happy boy as his dad is home with with him all day.

This afternoon Jay took Dembe out for a walk on part of Woodbury Common off Pines Ridge Road. He gave him a good 40 minutes walk, whilst out they bumped into a 9 month old very pale yellow Labrador, that was full of bounce and was doing the play stance with Dembe and indulged in Dembe’s favourite game ever of chase. The pup was a little bit bigger than Dembe and chunkier so show lines unlike Dembe who is working lines. By the time Dembe got back to the car he was covered in mud. He had to be hosed down in the back garden to get all the black mud off him. He was knackered after his play on the common

This evening we had dog training, this was the first session where I was freezing cold. Next week I am wrapping up properly with a hat on! Dembe is doing really well. It is always amazing that he works better off the lead doing heel work than he does on the lead.


There was a young Labrador at the training centre and Dembe was desperate to go and play with it. Thankfully though when we started the lesson he switched on to work mode.

Wednesday 14th October

We had an early start this morning as we had to collect a hire car from Exeter. Dembe was not impressed with the early start! He was as good as gold in the car as he really seems to have settled down on journeys now. Before he used to fuss and cry now he lies down in the car quite happily. He was very tired for the rest of the morning though.

He was very cuddly today and kept climbing up on my lap, getting me to hold his cows ear for him whilst he chewed it.

Martin came and collected Dembe for his walk as Jay was on a late shift today. It was a big day today as it was the first walk where we had said to Martin that we were ok with Dembe being off the lead with him.

copyright Happy Dogs
Copyright Happy Dogs
Copyright Happy dogs

It was really funny hearing from Martin that when he did the recall command with Dembe he refused to come back until Martin put his hand in the air. Dembe is very particular even at home, he was trained to do recall with a voice command and a hand signal. He flatly refuses at home to come back to us until we have our hand up, so he was just letting Martin know do it properly or not at all LOL!

Martin said that he did a bit of training on the walk with Dembe, getting D to stay and wait until given the command to retrieve the ball. Unfortunately Dembe was a bugger and refused to have a poo whilst out. This is the second time Dembe has refused to poo on his walk so yet again Jay has had to come home and whip him around the block.

Once Dembe had been out for a walk he stopped crying and fretting and went straight to sleep.

Thursday 15th October

Dembe has been very clingy all week with me. Probably because I haven’t been brilliant health wise. He has been hyper vigilant as well which is slightly annoying as any sound from outdoors he has barked at. He is sleeping almost on top of me at night. He is doing what our Weimaraner Frankie used to do sleeping as close as he can to my left leg, with his head resting just below my knee.

Nurse Frankie was very attune to what was going on with my health and maybe Dembe or should that be Dr Dembe is the same?

waiting for his dad to get home
Cuddles on the sofa
Managed to capture him with his eyes closed

Friday 16th October

Dembe’s new toys arrived today. We have bought him a replacement dinosaur, as his original dinosaur the first toy I ever chose for him, was looking a little ragged and needs a bit of sewing done to repair a hole. I bought two so that we always have a back up should anything happen to the other two. Blue dinosaur as it is known is the toy he always brings his dad in the morning when he hears Jay stir.

Looks like I need to get rid of the plastic tag from his head – it has fallen out now!

We also bought Dembe a replacement Carrot as I saw on the website of Pets at Home that they had just launched these again for Christmas, so that accidentally dropped in my basket too.

A week or so ago we had purchased him a Ruff and Tumble Drying Coat as he seems to take an absolute age to dry. He hates the hairdryer and it doesn’t matter how much you towel dry him off he is soaked for ages after. He has a terrible habit of wanting to lie on my legs when he is soaking wet making my clothes damp, so we thought after seeing so many other people recommend them we would give it a go. When it arrived I was in a bit of a panic as the site that I purchased it from had only put the length measurements for the sizing where as the packaging also said about his weight. His length put him in the L size but his weight put him in the XL category which is for large Labradors. He isn’t a large Labrador but I was worried the new coat wouldn’t fit. I managed to get it on him without a fuss and I am happy to report it fitted him perfectly. I took some photos to send Jay as he was working.

I love the second photo as I have managed to capture him with his tongue out, which rarely happens. We chose the Sandringham blue version of the coat.

Saturday 17th October

I was feeling really unwell this morning, I think Dembe knew I wasn’t right as when I woke up up he was lying right beside me. I kept yawning when I was downstairs and Dembe kept yawning back at me. For about 30 minutes we were stuck in a cycle of yawning at each other which was hilarious. He was on the small sofa and I was on the big sofa. Every time he yawned he wagged his tail at me.

We had a play this afternoon as Dembe was fully of beans waiting for his dad to get home after 5pm.

The hire car has been really irritating as it has been set so that only the drivers side opens when unlocked using the key fob. This means every time Dembe or I get into the car Jay has to climb inside and open the doors from there. Whilst they were on their walk this evening I had a look at the operating manual and sussed out what I needed to do to set the central locking so that all doors open when the key fob is pressed. I do wonder what was wrong with leaving child locks as just a button on the drivers side of the vehicle instead of making it a palaver of using the onboard computer. I probably sound like a philistine but I hate all the tech in cars these days.

Dembe is cracking us up, the car is really low, lower than the Happy Dogs van he jumps into for his walk but he still refuses to jump into the car. He gets his front legs on the back seat and then stands there with his arse hanging out waiting for Jay to lift his back end in. He is such a bloody diva that dog!

Sunday 18th October

Sunday as always is a day of rest. I’m feeling awful so Dembe is stuck to my side.

Monday, 12 October 2020

W/C 5th October 2020

 Monday 5th October

As per usual Jay is on an early shift today so was up at the crack of dawn so that he could watch some American Football before taking Dembe out and then getting ready for work. Dembe is not an early morning dog, he likes his walk at around 5.30-6am and then he comes straight back up to bed with me and sleeps until I get up later. I got up at 7.30am and he didn’t stir until 8.15am.

We had a very lazy day together on the sofa as I was exhausted from last week’s assisting Jay whilst the floor was done in his bedroom. Dembe was happy to oblige with cuddles and kisses. We had a really early night and Dembe was out like a light.

I got up quite late to go to the bathroom and found Dembe at the end of my bed asleep like this.

He sleeps in the strangest positions, he had taken out the crocheted blanket out and is sleeping underneath the cushion of his bed.

Tuesday 6th October

Jay is day off today so Dembe is a very happy bunny today. Thankfully he isn’t shaking his head any longer and the redness in his right ear has really reduced. Thank goodness his ear is now clearing up and if it has responded this quickly it goes to show John the vet was right and it is a fungal infection. Jay has booked in an appointment for a week today for Dembe’s check up and possible next anti fungal treatment.

We had to drive over to the airport today as this was the accident repair place our insurance company uses. Jay had a small accident last Saturday when he took Dembe to the vets and the car needs to be repaired. It is gutting but no one is hurt and we were the only people involved. Dembe was a really good boy on the journey over. For some reason since we got this car Dembe really enjoys lying down on the back seat. In our old car he never laid down, he would sit up and look out of the window unless he was absolutely shattered after dog training.

On the way home we stopped off at the common and Jay took Dembe out for a good run, around 40 minutes. This was his third walk of the day. He was knackered this afternoon.

I washed some of Dembe’s toys today. One of them was his baby blanket that he came home with in January 2019. He still loves to carry this around. It is one of the few toys that hasn’t sustained damage from his teeth!

At 5pm Jay took Dembe for a walk around the block, this was because normally Dembe goes out around this time and his big walk had been much earlier than normal. But that was walk number 4.

I didn’t go to dog training tonight as I wasn’t very well. However the trainers sent me some photos and videos from the evening. Dembe managed to break one of his toys in the warm up.

Copy right Suzanne Pashley

Dembe was shattered after training and went straight to sleep as usual.

Wednesday 7th October 2020

Dembe loves nothing more than giving us both lots of affection if we are all on the bed together. As hubby and I sleep in separate rooms, due to his snoring and my insomnia it only happens a couple of times a week. Dembe always brings us a toy, usually his blue dinosaur as that is the toy he brings us when upstairs. This was the first toy that I ever bought him.

Dembe just adores his dad and loves nothing more than cuddles with him.

Dinky dot was shattered all day after dog training last night. He slept all afternoon until just before Martin from Happy Dogs arrived to take him out for his afternoon walk as Jay was on a late shift.. Dembe had a good walk but unfortunately refused to poo. About 30 minutes after he got home he started crying and I immediately knew that he wanted a poo. Little sod. I had to ring Jay up and ask him to pop home in his lunch hour as Dembe would need a quick walk around the block so he would go to the toilet.

Jay popped home just after 5pm and took Dembe out, he had two giant turds. So hopefully I will have a whinge free evening with him. The blonde bastard strikes again.

We had a settled and chilled out evening once Dembe had done his business!

Thursday 8th October

Again Dembe is the life and soul of the party today! I can’t complain as I have jobs I want to potter around and do so a sleeping pup is a handy thing to have.

Jay had another early start today and Dembe really doesn’t like early mornings! Other than to have his walk.

I posted on Monday about how Dembe likes tipping / digging all his cushions / throws out of his bed and then sleeping on the base. He does the same with his wicker basket in the lounge. The silly thing is he empties it all and then sleeps beside it on the floor.

Friday 9th October

Dembe is a very cuddly boy today. Whilst I was on my embroidery machine in the kitchen Dembe came in and wanted up on my lap. When he was a tiny pup last year, I would have him on my lap sleeping whilst I was on my embroidery machine. Now however he weighs 35kg and is huge compared to the dinky dot he was, so it can’t happen my legs aren’t big enough. So I have to just give him a cuddle and a kiss.

Dembe always looks forward to his dad coming home at lunch time and will quite often suddenly wake up or stop whatever it is he is doing and between 12.45 and 13.00 he will go to the lounge window and wait for his dad to arrive home. He has already worked out the sound of his dads car pulling up onto the drive and he goes crazy, barking and tail going like mad.

Calm before the storm

Jay always gives Dembe a walk around the block so that he can go to the toilet and stretch his legs. He uses these lead walks as additional training sessions.

Dembe fell asleep waiting to for his dad to come home.

Saturday 10th October

Jay is late night today so Dembe has had two walks this morning before his dad left for work. Dembe has his little routine that he follows every day and when I am getting myself sorted for the day ahead, Dembe goes to sleep on my bed.

Today Dembe is going on an afternoon walk with my friend Max who also runs a dog walking service called “It’s a Dogs Life”, it is his first time going out with her. I am incredibly nervous as he is our baby. I know Max ( I have known her for years and have worked with her many years ago) will look after him but it is like leaving your baby with someone. You can’t help but worry.

Dembe managed to make me feel like the worst mother ever as he was very nervous about going with Max. He was fine up until he got to her van, he must have realised it wasn’t his usual Happy Dogs van ( who we use during the week) and freaked out a bit. With a bit of gentle persuasion he got in. Max brought him back an hour later, she told me he had been a really good boy and had a poo ( thank goodness) I didn’t want a repeat of Wednesday when Jay had to come home. He must’ve had a good time ( probably also the nerves of being with a new person) as he went to sleep within minutes of Max leaving.

We had a game of nudge about an hour or so later and then he had his dinner. He is now fast asleep beside me on the sofa.

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 ...