It’s That Bulldog Spirit!
Why on earth do we need another dog? It’s crazy, I know….
Well, it happened like this.
Every day we take our dogs – and kids – to the local meadow/park for exercise. When we first started going there, we had the place to ourselves. But over time, others have obviously seen us from the road and these days, there are any number of folk who come to enjoy a stroll in the park in the late afternoon. Many, like us, also bring their dogs.
One such person, who we encountered on many occasions, was a Thai lady with two dogs. One of her dogs was a lovely little German Pinscher (I think) and the other was a baby British Bulldog. The Bulldog was very friendly and every time he saw us he would come bounding across to say hello and play with our own dogs.
To cut a long story short, one day the Thai lady asked us if we knew anyone who might be interested in looking after the Bulldog. Apparently the dog had been deserted at the lady’s home by someone who used to live there and she was looking to place it in good home.
As ugly as the bulldog was, we all fell in love with him, so against our better judgement, we offered him a home.
His name was “Johnny” but when we got him home, I noticed that Lek had trouble pronouncing the word “Johnny.” It sounded more like “Sonny” than Johnny.
“Why don’t we call him Sonny? I suggested. “As in Sonny Boy – the dog won’t notice the difference.”
“Yes, I like that.”
So Sonny it is.
Sonny is a purebred English bulldog with a pedigree certificate from a reputable breeder. He is 9 months old, so he is still a puppy and won’t be fully grown until he is about 18 months old. But apparently bulldogs keep ‘filling out” until they are about three years old.
Due to generations of inbreeding, the poor things only have a lifespan of about 8 years, so it will be touch and go who cops it first – Mobi or Sonny…place your bets now…
Never in my wildest dreams did I ever think that one day I would own a bulldog. But here he is and he has quickly endeared himself to one and all – with the possible exception of our two Shih Tzus….
He is such a soppy lump. He wants everyone to be his friend and he loves to play. The trouble is he doesn’t know how to control his teeth and if we’re not careful we can get a painful bite when he is fooling around.
He always comes to us when we call him, and when we take him out for walks he stays close to us the whole time. This is quite remarkable, as our other dogs only come to us when they feel like it… When we let them off the back of the truck, they always run off in all directions, totally out of control.
Sonny lumbers after them but after a few yards he is puffing away out of breath and he comes back to us.
In some ways, Sunny is obedient but extremely stubborn. If he wants to do something, it is difficult to turn him from his purpose. We will say “NO”, and he desists, then he waits until nobody is looking and starts all over.
He is still finding his place with Somchai and Yoghurt, our two Shih Tzus, but he and Micky (our Labrador) seem to have fallen in love with each other. They spend a lot of time together, licking and grooming. Sonny wants to play all the time, but Micky just wants to sleep, but he patiently tolerates Sunny’s continual efforts to play with him.
Sonny’s attempts to win over Somchai and Yoghurt have not been quite so successful. In particular, every time he attempts to play with Yoghurt or cross his path, Yoghurt lets him know in no uncertain terms that his overtures are not welcome. A loud bark and a snap of his teeth and Sonny is chased away.
Yes… a bulldog is chased off by a ‘rugrat’ a fraction of his size.
For the first few days, Somchai and Yoghurt tried to hide or keep away from him, but now they tolerate him and are clearly not afraid of him. When Micky first arrived it took them quite a while to accept him, so it will work itself out eventually.
The trouble is, Sunny doesn’t seem to follow normal ‘dog etiquette’. Normally, if one of our dogs is lying down and blocking the way, the other dogs won’t disturb him or ty to climb over him. They will wait patiently for the dog to move or they will find another way around him.
Not so Sonny. If one of our other dogs dog is in his way, he just barges through, or in the case of Mickey, clambers over him. Not at all doggy-like! Hyacinth Bouquet would never approve! Neither do Somchai and Yoghurt – but Micky just smiles indulgently.
It is quite fascinating. Our three breeds have totally different temperaments. The Shih Tzus are quite independent and generally only want to be nursed for short periods of time before they ask to get down and sit at our feet.
The Labrador will let you cosset him and nurse him all day long if you feel like it. He can’t have enough of petting and tickling. He is so docile and loving. But if left alone, he is content to sleep in his own corner of the room
It’s still early days. All of our dogs crave love and affection but Sonny seems to be the most demanding. Maybe it’s because he is still a puppy – we’ll have to wait and see. He always wants to be close to one of us and will be the first to welcome anyone who comes into the house, be it family, friends or a stranger. Apparently they get stressed if they are left alone for long periods.
Sonny is even more alert than Micky when it comes to hearing strange sounds or people or dogs outside in the road. He is always the first to rush outside looking for trouble. They reckon that bulldogs make good guard dogs. They look so fierce that they scare most people away.
Right now he doesn’t look particularly fierce, but he certainly looks ugly…
No more walks in the park?
A couple of weeks ago, we went to the park that we have been using every day only to find that it was bolted and barred. They were setting up inside for a large party, so it was understandable. But the party has long been over and no sign that they are going to let us in again. It’s such a shame, as the kids and the dogs loved it – as did many others.
In the meantime, Lek has found an alternative exercise area that takes us across open fields and around a tiny reservoir. It’s quite nice there – just about perfect for Sunny and the two little dogs but Micky doesn’t get the same amount of exercise as he used to. Neither do I…
Fingers crossed that the park owners will unlock the gates again sometime soon.
Suzi’s Underskirts Revealed!
I have now completed the first seven chapters of my new novel, provisionally entitled SUZI. I owe much to my team of reviewers – now augmented by the harshest critic I have ever had who have all kindly agreed to read my raw drafts as they come off my computer.
As with my previous books, I will be publishing more draft chapters as and when they are in a halfway decent state to be read.
The production of new chapters will be quite sporadic as I need to spend most of my time on contract writing work to pay the bills. So I am not too sure when they will appear in my blog.
In the meantime, I welcome any feedback from my much-valued readers – good or bad; please don’t hold back.