Not that I mind having the kids around 24/7, but over the past fortnight we've mostly existed on pies, a mountain in several different sweet and savoury varieties, and every shopping trip has cost me extra hot chocolates and coffees. Plus I'm totally sick of the sound of my own screeching. Why is it you have to become a bulging-eyed manic-dictator foaming at the mouth with wrath and ire in order to be taken seriously? Honestly, if I have to say "Don't pick him up by his head!", repeat myself several times to get everyone dressed and out the door, or confiscate a Nerf gun one more time in the near future they are going to lock me up for mincing the lot of em up and feeding them to the new dog.
Speaking of which...
Does it look sane? She's another Deerhound X. This is about the only close-up photo I've managed to get of her because she has one speed - full. I already have one teenager to wrassle, what on earth possessed me to get a second? She will no doubt settle down in a year or so, in the mean time we will have to live with the washing line stripping, bin raiding, jumping upon and trampling the smaller members of the family and hysterical barking when it all becomes too much for her (or when that evil postman comes past on that buzzy thing and attempts to steal her mail box). A lot of it is no doubt due to the extended stay with the RSPCA, whoever lost her, or dumped her, originally probably thanked their luck stars when she went astray and obviously beating her bad habits out of her didn't work beyond making her extremely submissive and wary around new people. Walking her on a choker is out of the question, she pulls like a train, and it sounds like she has a fair bit of windpipe damage from misuse of the chain in the past. The Naughty Dog Walker (a funky adjustable halter that is tight around her upper throat and behind her ears, with a looser fitting muzzle piece) a friend gave us is excellent. It was a real struggle to get on to her at first but she's improving in the amount of time she will sit still and let us get it done up. The garden is suffering, lots of the plants have been trampled and she's managed to snap a couple of young trees in full flight without a care. Loves her flower pots too, not too good for the plants in them. It's been a wet couple of weeks, so not only have the smallies confined themselves to indoor activities for the duration of the holidays in case they dissolve and melt , the area around the back step is a quagmire pocked with doggy toe and nail prints, with the occasional speed smear thrown in.
I'm sure she'll get there. It's a lot easier to raise a young hound with one child and a set of 6 ft paling fences that keep the world out, but as the photo above shows we have wire mesh fences and we are on a corner block, and lots of people love to walk their dogs past off the lead and ramp them up to sprint around just to see her in full flight. Great for their dogs on the outside, but the 50m stretch of fence stops for our girl, sometimes quite suddenly! Soccer finishes this term, and that will leave us free to go to obedience classes, if the big guy doesn't crack it and send her back from whence she came first!