Today marks four years since Lenny came to live with me.
I was surprised to see people at the door to my house. I was assailed by a pup of about eight months of age and we proceeded to run around like idiots having fun. When the ladies who delivered Lenny left we kind of looked at each other with some trepidation and then proceeded to run our parents ragged for about two weeks whilst we got used to living together. It was like dropping a furry hand grenade into my life.
He’s been here four years. We have been to all sorts of places, seen many things and met many people. Lenny has settled into his life of safety. He has learned some commands and knows he will get ear tickles and head scratches if he’s a good lad.
Whisper this but I am so pleased he’s here. We may annoy each other and do silly things but I know he’s safe and loved which is the best thing ever. Happy fourth Gotcha Day Lenny Lendog.
I haven’t been on here much recently as I have been busy recuperating from the operation on my cruciate ligament back on 6th January. I know I reported progress around three weeks after the operation but thought I would let you know how I am getting on. That is of course if you are interested.
I was at the vets each Monday for about 6 weeks after the operation. I had laser treatment but I avoided wearing the trendy goggles that are normally used. I had one parent alternating each night staying downstairs with me as I was banned from stairs for over a month. It was extremely boring staying on the ground floor as I was being regaled with stories from Lenny about sleeping in his bed and being able to stretch out, not being hassled by me during the night and getting midnight snacks whilst I wasn’t there. For the first few weeks the only outside time I got was in the garden which only added to me feeling stir crazy. Then during the day my walks started although they were short and slow which was due to me healing. Also my parents said that I was normally an idiot on a walk because I can smell a squirrel/rabbit/fox/deer (delete as applicable) from around a mile away. I went along a quiet road at a slow pace to help build up the muscle wastage that I had suffered over the preceding months. My mum was doing physio sessions with me three or four times a day. My leg was being worked hard but carefully to ensure that there were no relapses. Come rain and shine I was out on a short walk and then back to the house where I shown how to exercise my leg and get stronger. Treats and a peanut butter lick mat may have helped here, so I am not putting it all down to my own will power. Suddenly I was allowed upstairs although at first I was lead walked up to my bed at night. During the day I was still restricted to downstairs but I didn’t mind too much. After a couple of weeks of being accompanied I was found upstairs as I had secretly engaged in a bout of snout jousting with Lenny which had finished with us finding the best spot to look out of the window and check squirrels in the garden. We weren’t in the proverbial good books for a while, especially until they could ensure that I hadn’t done damage to myself.
When I went back to the vets for the last time, around three weeks ago they said I was doing really well, mum was doing a great job on my rehab and physio and I could start to go on longer walks. We had to increase the mileage slowly each week from less than a mile to a mile, a mile and a quarter all the way through to a mile and a half currently. I have been going to different places and its got a bit more interesting. I sill don’t walk with Lenny as he goes for longer walks than me and we tend to compete for scents when we are together. I’ve had a couple of setbacks where I started limping a little and then my front left leg was playing up. With the aid of some medicine and anti inflammatories I seem to be on the right path now though.
I couldn’t have done it without my parents. And even Lenny helped by giving me time and space to heal. He knew I was in some discomfort as soon as I arrived home after the operation although I think that the onesie, Fentanyl patch and me looking spaced out might have given the game away.
Anyway yesterday it was 12 weeks since the operation and we went to the beach in the wind and rain. We met up with our good friend Griff who brought his parents along. We walked and there was chatter with some cake and coffee mixed in. I’d had three walks all over a mile and a half. I didn’t even realise I had gone that far and there are no ill effects today.
We actually found the Bluebird Cafe in Ferring which was an excellent place to go and very, very dog friendly. Today we have mainly been sleeping and dreaming.
I’m on the road to recovery. For a “nearly” thirteen year old beagle I feel bionic but I am being reined in by my concerned parents. There’s life in the old fella yet.
A yearly review always seems to be on the cards so I will dispense with the long winded wordiness about what we did and didn’t do this year. Essentially we had fun, went on adventures, lost some dear buddies and remained loved throughout.
We lost my sweet cousin Minnie to the horrid C. Rest easy fur cousin.
For the rest of the month we rested and I felt melancholy.
Lenny and I were accused of being “thick as thieves” as we seemed to be plotting shenanigans after chicanery. Not sure what they meant.
Storm Eunice introduced herself to the UK and Lenny was out the day after to check the destruction she had wrought.
Spring sprung and the blossom bloomed.
We enjoyed the days becoming warmer and the sun on our fur.
We went on separate walks so we could explore at our our own pace.
I enjoyed pulling parents along the lanes.
Vampires slept whilst all around them got on with their lives.
I took the chance to catch up on my sleep as well.
Taking time to survey my patch is always important.
But then we found the Paw Paddock at Horsham (actually its nearer to Warnham). I was a puppy again.
Then we found Paw Paddock Horsham again.
Ok, one more at Paw Paddock Horsham.
We lost Tyrrell, one of the best beagle pals you could ever wish for. Rest easy sweetie.
We also got to explore a place called Whiteways near Amberley. Phew, what a scorcher.
We also lost Eddy. He was one of my oldest friends. We had met a few years ago and strolled about. He was another rufty tufty beagle lad. Rest easy Eddy dude.
We explored the beach at Goring By Sea. We were supposed to be at Ferring but thanks to dad we didn’t get there.
My favourite place anywhere. Just beautiful.
The nights started to draw in and our beds seemed more comfy each day.
We ensured that at least one parent had to sit on the edge of the sofa.
We lost the most beautiful and wonderful Nut beagle. Rest easy sweetie.
We soaked up the last warmth of the sunshine.
Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays everyone.
Time for more thoughts about what lies ahead.
And with that the year ends. I am fortunate to be loved and safe, to have a multitude of friends and to have a happy life. Sometime in early January 2023 I am off to the vet to have my leg fixed so I can try to run around again chasing Lenny like a “fur possessed”. Shenanigans will have to wait sadly.
Best wishes to all for the coming year, may you all stay safe and remain loved.
We had an unexpected trip yesterday morning. As we left the house we saw that dad had his camera with him. Lenny and I also seemed to be going in the same direction. Mum asked dad “do you know where you’re going?” to which he rolled his eyes and got a poke in the ribs for being cheeky. As it turned out, he didn’t know exactly.
Along the little lane and then turned back towards home. We knew there was going to be a car journey. Great, another adventure. Soon after we had been lifted regally into our travel crates, we were off south bound. Right, left, straight over and then left into a car park overlooking the Channel.
We were allowed out and breathed in the sea air. As we looked up I saw a building called Sea Lane Cafe in Goring by Sea and then looked at dad, who looked at mum and sheepishly told her that this wasn’t the Bluebird Cafe in Ferring. I thought you knew the way! We all rolled our eyes at him and then set off east along the path and the edge of the beach. We strolled, counted beach huts, said hello to other dogs, strolled further and then found ourselves on the edge of Worthing.
We turned back at this point as it was getting warmer and the water bottle was running a little low. As we wandered past the Sea Lane Cafe (Not the Bluebird Cafe) we decided to see if it was possible to get to where we were supposed to be.
Lenny was flagging by now as he has no stamina for longer walks. So yet again we turned and made our way toward the car.
I have to admit that I was also tired by now so I was glad of a little rest in my travel crate. Once again we required to be regally lifted and placed in our respective places and off we set, retracing our journey northbound and to home. Maybe we will get to the correct cafe one day. When we got home we heard rumour that if breakfast had been taken al fresco, Lenny and I were on for snaffling some sausage.
Currently we are curled up dreaming of long walks on a pebbly beach with a stop off at a dog friendly cafe serving breakfast sausage fit for beagles. If only dad knew where he was going.
Dad was taking the car into the garage early yesterday morning as it needed fixing. As such Lenny and I were in sole charge of our mum, so we knew we could have some fun. On “mum only” days we would leave the house, go up the old road, briefly into the woods, then out and around the fields. This gives us maximum chance of a snifari whilst giving mum a reasonable chance of keeping her shoulders in their sockets. Anyway we left and then turned right. Away from the old road? We had been this way once before and had strolled (read pulled on our respective leads) through the bigger woods on the other side of the big road. Surely she wasn’t making the same mistake again. Under the bridge, right along the footpath and then we descended the track toward the farm with the stagnant pond. We wandered (read pulled on our respective leads) along sniffing and wondering where we were going. Left turn and the gate was closed behind us. We sat and were told “You’ve got 25 minutes so no shenanigans”. No chance, we were at the Paw Paddock and we only had one parent to try and control us.
Lenny was first to be left off lead and he walked alongside mum instead of running about aroooing like a hound possessed. I always knew he was a “goodie four paws”. Then he was re-shackled and I was allowed off.
For some strange reason I too strolled about quite calmly and only had a very quick run around with loud baying. Then we both got let off together and we surprised each other by just trotting along scenting and having a good time without bothering one another.
When called we both returned and sat nicely to allow our leads to be re-attached to our harnesses. There may have been tasty snack bribes but we can gloss over that bit.
We returned home, ate our breakfast and then wandered about the garden, making sure there were any squirrel invaders. Maybe I am getting old or, maybe, Lenny and I are just calming down when in the presence of each other.
In the afternoon we had a visit from Ernie’s mum who threatened to bring him along to the next Paw Paddock trip. This could be interesting.
The avid readers amongst you may recall that Lenny accompanied me on a walk a couple of weeks ago from West Grinstead station north to a little village called Copsale. Today we returned to West Grinstead once more but, somewhat surprisingly, we went south along the path to a village called Partridge Green.
We were shocked when we walked up and back along the old road near the house, finding ourselves at the car for the second day in a row. What was this sorcery? This was unheard of? Two trips in succession? We wondered if it was because today is a Bank Holiday and our parents felt like we needed something extra to amuse ourselves. In any case we drove a little way north and then east. We arrived at the little car park and we swiftly disembarked from our travel crates. Lenny is getting better at travelling and doesn’t seem to feel as ill as often as he did.
Heading under the road we followed our noses south along the old rail track which has been made into a path for walkers, riders, cyclists and often runners. We were swiftly into our stride of going to the grassy sides of the path as these areas held the best scents which, in turn, gave us the best chances of pulling parents this way and that. Through the old cuttings, past fields of stubble and then into little wooded areas, we strolled along with our noses 2 inches above the ground. Every now and then we were reined in as cyclists or runners went past us. After a good wander we looked up to see a little sign post confirming we were in Partridge Green. My parents of course had to find out where the pub was and we also found out that the Dark Star Brewery is located here. Dad boasted that he had been to the brewery but we weren’t particularly impressed and just wanted to continue on with our walk.
We were beginning to flag somewhat at this point and a water stop was needed. As we turned around and headed north along the track, I looked a little behind me and saw Lenny walking like a “good boy”. Apparently he was still a bit tired from yesterdays herculean efforts on Cissbury. That boy has no stamina, let me tell you. Thankfully the path is fairly flat so Lenny didn’t have too strenuous a return journey although we did have a little stop to rest his weary long legs.
We arrived at the station and were duly lifted back into our travel crates for the return home where breakfast was loudly requested by us running around the garden baying at the top of our lungs.
We have been sleeping for the rest of the day as it is apparent to some that two days of fun walks are more than enough for a senior beagle and his vampiric sidekick. I’m not sure who these dogs are, but I wouldn’t mind meeting them.
I was going to ramble wordily around the houses as to what we did yesterday but the title gives it all away.
We allowed the parents a bit of a lie in as it was a Bank Holiday Sunday after all. Lenny and I had no idea what was happening until we turned out of our little road and went left along the old road. Sharply we were turned around and heading back to the house. Ok, so we weren’t going across the fields for a good scent of fox, rabbit and squirrel. Having ensured that we were lifted into our travel crates, we set off south along the main road. We scooted past our recent ascent of Chanctonbury and seemed to be on our way south. Surely we weren’t going to the beach. After listening to them grumbling about Lenny and I eating “dead stuff” on the previous occasions I wondered if they had relented and were going to give us another chance to visit the garden at all hours of the night for a few days. As I was wondering we turned left up a side road and into a gravel carpark. This was new and Lenny looked as bemused as me. As we leapt out and onto our paws we both looked up and up at a big hill in front of us and I could see the glint in Lenny’s eyes. We set off at a pace as Lenny decided he was going to scent his way along the path and dad was being pulled this way and that, as Lenny did a more than passable impression of a land shark through the long grass. Into the wood, then out and onto the next section of the hill.
Up the steep bank and we were greeted with a view back to Chanctonbury in one direction and the sea in the opposite.
This was fun as we could scent all sorts of creatures and we made sure that there wasn’t any laziness or strolling amongst the human fraternity. The walk seemed to be circular and we could see for miles. We went past runners, riders, walkers, other dogs and even other dogs with walkers. We got to the top of the hill, checked out the trig point and then started a descent and were abruptly halted as there were ponies in our way. Not that it mattered as we directed our parents along the path toward the little copse of trees and then out into the open where we overlooked Findon and Worthing.
It all seemed quite small and far away. I was puffing and panting like a steam train so we made sure to stop a few times to top up on water. Then I heard the worst words a beagle can hear, “I think thats enough excitement for one day for a senior beagle. I think if he keeps on going at this rate, he’s going to do himself another injury”. And with that the fun was over. We retraced our path and descended to the car park, albeit via slightly different route so we could get some final sniffs.
Within two minutes of being in the car we were both snoozing in our travel crates and we returned home for breakfast. Our fun was finished. We slept and dreamed of more shenanigans to come.
Today is one of those days when I worry about what will happen next. I am reluctantly handing over my blog to my younger brother who isn’t really my brother. I have taken him under my wing so to speak and shown him the ways of the beagle. Anyway, here goes.
Hello, it is I, Lenny. I’m four today! I don’t know what that means but I do know it comes with treats, a birthday card, extra tickles and a stroll around my new favourite place, being the Paw Paddock. I think I can get used to this sort of attention. Dex has been told he has to be nice to me today (although he usually is!) and I get first dibs on biscuits and treats albeit for one day only.
We went nice and early to the Paw Paddock and I was let off lead to run around like a fur possessed. Instead I merely wandered off, sniffed and then strolled back to a parent to be re-shackled after fifteen minutes or so.
Chicken flavoured treats may have assisted in my recall however I want it known that I have been complemented on my recall generally in recent times. Dex was released and he too just strolled about and then disappeared to the other end of the paddock. When he returned, again to the sound of a treat bag being rustled, he was promptly re-attached and I was again released.
There were some tasty rabbit droppings that I wasn’t told off for eating so, I assume, it must be a special day.
We returned home just in time for the forecast rain to start falling. Its been dry as a bone here for a couple of months so this little period of rain is very welcome. We avoided getting wet and now I’ve been told I can laze on whichever chair I want for the rest of the afternoon. I wanted to laze on the big bed however that was deemed too cheeky and is out of bounds. In due course I will expect my food to be served and then I will relax for the rest of the day.
I’m a lucky lad to be honest and sensible for a moment. I want for little (apart from snoozing on the big bed) and Dex is a good brother to me. He’s had more of these birthday things than I have, although I shouldn’t say “three times as many”.
My vampiric little brother, who isn’t an actual blood relation went off to the local, and new, enclosed paddock yesterday morning to test it out for our future entertainment. He appears to have given it a solid thumbs or he would if he had opposable thumbs. We would also be able to break into the treat jar if he had thumbs, but that’s for another blog.
Anyway, back to the matter in hand (or paw). A new paddock area has opened in my village and we decided we would try it out. Since I had shown signs of leg ache from the previous Beagle Derby the parents decided it was wiser to get Lenny to test it out and then I can go along the next day to make sure he was telling the truth.
He returned home with tales of fun and laughter, of scents and of freedom to run around like a fool for a while.
On the back of this advice I needed to make sure he was telling the truth so, this morning…
I can vouch for his honesty, on this occasion. I had a great time running about, scenting and trying to find field food to eat. We will be going back, of that I am certain. I suspect it wont be together as we tend to get a little over enthusiastic and I find myself a little lame in the hip for a day.
If my current snoring is anything to go by, I think it will be fairly soon. The parents are enjoying the peace and quiet. How rude.
Don’t you believe it. Awake at 6.30 on a Sunday listening to the chorus of complaint from a certain parent is always a good start. Six thirty he says, does this beagle not realise its a Sunday, he continues. Anyway a well placed kidney pounce from my brother brings a suitable conclusion to the laziness and Lenny and I find ourselves being walked along the old road. Now we don’t usually walk together as we tend to want the same scent at the same time and bitey face snout jousting often ensues. This can only mean one thing, we’re going on an adventure. Turned round halfway along the road only reaffirms my point. Lenny, we are going for a ride.
At the car Lenny leaps in and the boot is shut. Off we go, left along the road, past the roundabouts, through the traffic lights and then left onto the winding road. Left at the pub and then right. We’re here, we’re here! As the boot is opened the smell of freedom fills our nostrils. Paw Paddock, Hello!!! The gates are shut and we are released so stroll about. Sadly the next gate is still shut so it’s easy for us to be grappled and put on the leads and harnesses. Once into the paddock we are strolled part way round and then Lenny is off. With his back legs following the front ones, he’s bimbled across the paddock in no time at all. He returned on pain of missing a treat only to find he’s re-shackled.
Then it was my turn to run free, with the wind in my ears, and the grass a blur beneath my belly. I returned when asked and got a decent tickle with accompanying treat for being a “good lad”. I must admit at this point that I do like a good ear rub. In any case this swapping of free beagles continued for another twenty minutes. Then we heard the parents mumbling something about “well there’s only one way to find out”.
Both Lenny and I found ourselves unleashed at the same time. We stood there for a microsecond to wonder what was this sorcery until our beagle nature took over and we chased each other around the paddock like a couple of possessed idiots (these are not my words). It was surprising how quickly we calmed down and started to merely stroll about sniffing and snootering without annoying each other. When we were told that we were going back on the leads, neither of us complained, too much.
Then it was back in the car and home for breakfast and some well earned rest.
Now, here’s the thing. A twelve year old beagle chasing a four year old beagle around a large paddock for an extended period may cause said twelve year old body to feel a little strained. Having snoozed for a while I got up to find my rear right leg doesn’t work properly and it seems I have overexerted myself and strained my thigh muscles.
Oh dear, I can hear talk of a trip to the v-e-t tomorrow if it doesn’t clear up. Don’t believe the hype about young in mind and young in body. Take it easy and pace yourselves. This getting older lark takes some practice. It’s lucky that I am a hardy lad and won’t be complaining about my condition.