Puppy Love

Can Ted and I do yoga mum?

Do you go with your head or your heart? I like to think of myself as a very sensible person, but I usually listen to my heart over my head when making decisions.

I’ve always loved dogs, especially hairy ones! I had been thinking of getting a new puppy for a long time, the trouble was that life was easy with just the one dog, why upset that balance? Maisie our five year old bearded collie / lab cross had got used to being an only dog. She lost her best friend, Isha, two years ago and although she grieved, she enjoyed getting lots of our attention, especially on our trips away in the motorhome.

But something was niggling at me to get another dog, my fiftieth birthday was coming up and I wanted to mark the occasion with something very special – a new puppy would be perfect!

On our trip to the Lakes at Easter a motorhome pulled up into the next pitch to ours with a gorgeous clipped bearded collie. The kids and I instantly went ‘Orr we want one!’ while Conrad couldn’t really understand why I always want a ‘shaggy’ dog! ‘We can have it clipped like that one.’ I negoitiated. We had intended to go to Croatia in the van this summer, getting Maisie a pet passport and taking her with us, a puppy would obvioulsy mean a change of that plan. ‘What would you rather have kids, a sunny summer holiday exploring Europe or another Scottish holiday and a puppy?’ You can guess the answer.

Head or heart? Keeping the balance or taking on the work of a new pup?

I thought I’d just check online and see if there were any beardie babies around. There were two litters, one in Cambridgeshire from a very successful and knowledgeable breeder and one in Morecambe, from a pet beardie owner. A call to both of them lead me to another head or heart decision, my head said, ‘Go with the breeder, the pups are health checked and KC registered, we would get the support of a beardie owner of 40 years.’ and yet I was being drawn West, rather than South. I was due to do some training in Manchester on my birthday and Morecambe was just another hour away. How special would it be to get her on 50th!

I messaged my very ‘in tune’ friend – West or South? West was her instant reply – heart wins!

And so on the 26th of April, depsite a couple of family members being ‘the voice of reason’ and telling me all of the reasons why not to get a new puppy, I went to see the Morecambe litter and just happend to have a dog cage in my car with me, plus lots of puppy paraphenalia. Tess came to Yorkshire with me and was an instant hit with the rest of the Fox family. Well actually Maisie took a few weeks to like her, she wouldn’t even look at her in the first week, but has now made friends and is happily playing and enjoying her extra treats.

In the new year knew that 2017 was going to be about me getting healthier and having more balance in my life. I also wanted this year to be one of fun and joy. Well I think Tess fits into that plan very well. She is such a gorgeous pup and has been so good. She is learning fast, and so am I. I’m devouring YouTube videos about clicker training and teaching your dog through positive experiences. I am commited to helping Tess to be an awesome, well trained dog and we will have lots of fun along the way.

So Tess has reminded me to yes, keep following my heart, but also that you have to GIVE in order to GET. The more positive energy you put into something the more you will be rewarded. She’s helping me to be patient, focussed, creative and organised. She has had her first week away in the motorhome and was simply amazing, we struggled walking places though as everyone wanted to stop us to give her cuddles!

So I am full of love and gratitude for our two special dogs. I look forward to the adventures that we will share together and the debate I’ll be having with my hubby in the future about getting her hair cut!