‘Happiness is a warm puppy’

Happiness is a warm puppy” — Charles M. Schulz

I know that some of my readers are eager for an update on Aimée, the blenheim Cavalier King Charles spaniel that I brought home at the beginning of September last year. She was three months old then; now she is nine months and growing into a beautiful dog.

Here’s how she looked then. She was so tiny that she was smaller than my cat!

puppy-1-7-september

puppy-3-7-september

And here she is now:

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A little bundle of puppy joy

puppy-1-7-september

How it Begins
 
A puppy is a puppy is a puppy.
He’s probably in a basket with a bunch
of other puppies.
Then he’s a little older and he’s nothing
but a bundle of longing.
He doesn’t even understand it.
Then someone picks him up and says,
“I want this one.”
~ Poem by Mary Oliver from her book Dog Songs (2013) ~

A week ago today, feeling a mix of nervous anticipation and excitement, I drove to collect the newest addition to the family. No, not a baby, but something I confess I find much cuter: a little bundle of puppy joy! Continue reading

Sunday Snapshot

I’m not feeling great today. I think I am still recovering from exams and the build-up to getting my degree result. I’ll write a post about finishing my undergraduate degree soon, when I have more energy.

In the meantime, here’s a Sunday Snapshot with a very apt quotation!

Kittens are born with their eyes shut. They open them in about six days, take a look around, then close them again for the better part of their lives. ~Stephen Baker

image

Photo challenge day 3: Returns

Day 3 of the First Thirty-One photo challenge (Fourtuitous.com)!

When the clock ticks past 4 pm, I know who will be waiting patiently until I return home to feed her.

Before a cat will condescend
To treat you as a trusted friend,
Some little token of esteem
Is needed, like a dish of cream — T.S. Eliot

Waiting for the human

Waiting for the human

“The more I see of man, the more I like dogs”

Public domain image source: Unbearably Cute Puppy by Douglas Gray

“The more I see of man, the more I like dogs”, said Madame de Staël (1766 – 1817) and although she lived 200 years ago, I think most of us will still agree that man has a special relationship with the canine species. A dog is a (wo)man’s best friend.

This is reflected in popular culture; there are so many books about dogs out there. Marley and Me by John Grogan is one of the modern bestsellers but this trend extends back to the past, with John Steinbeck’s classic Travels with Charley and My Dog Tulip by J.R. Ackerley.

Most of these books take a look at life as well as living with a four-legged creature: Steinbeck travels round the States with his dog and Grogan’s book charts his marriage, career and family life as well as providing an amusing picture of “the world’s worst dog”, to quote the book’s cover tagline. The “worst dog” in  question is a Labrador Retriever and judging by their position in the most popular dogs league table (http://www.dailypuppy.com/articles/top-10-most-popular-dog-breeds/253b2d86-c112-9854-d5b4-233120ca0ff9), they are our most-loved breed of dog.

I can see why. I grew up with Labradors and my current Lab is an adorable, amiable and abiding dog. I’m not the first to say that the enduring appeal of Labradors, and dogs in general, lies in their capacity for unconditional love. Dogs don’t care what you look like, whether you’re wearing makeup today, or whether you’ve brushed your teeth. They are not bothered by social etiquette and have no concept whatsoever of personal space: my dog still tries to sit on my lap and barges past me when it’s time for her dinner. She bears little resemblance to Marley, however. Her only flaw is her tendency to run away with anything she can find on the floor, usually shoes, and invite you to have a game of chase which will usually end in her outrunning you!

My yellow Labrador

I recently saw the movie adaptation of Marley and Me; it’s a three-star movie in my opinion because although all those shots of Marley playfully and cutely being “the world’s worst dog” are entertaining, the movie is slightly over-long. Also, I didn’t find the two lead actors (Jennifer Aniston and Owen Wilson) particularly engaging. But it is a great, entertaining Sunday afternoon type of movie and if you like Labs, it’s worth a watch sometime.

I can see why dogs have a prominent place in literature, stories and in many of our lives;   “Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole” (Roger Caras)