Friday, 30 November 2007

TFI Friday.....

....for those non-UK based readers, that's 'Thank F**k It's Friday' - although for all I know it may be an internationally known abbreviation.

It's been one heck of a week. Tilly has been grounded, and resting her leg. I must thank everyone for their very useful comments on my previous post as to how to keep her occupied. We've done bits and pieces of training (bits being the operative word), lots of kong stuffing, much waving around of stuffed toys, and a lot of ambling around the house. By the end of the day on Tuesday, I was suffering from serious cabin fever and losing the will to live. Tilly, on the other hand, has coped really well considering her hyperactive nature and hasn't lost her lust for life at all.

I've been giving her Metacam, which could be masking things, but she seems quite sound on the leg now. We've had one or two very short lead walks that she's coped with well, and I'm planning on stopping the Metacam now to see how she gets on. The sooner we can build back up to normal walking, the better!

She spent Wednesday night at her Grandparents house, as I had to attend another awards ceremony. She had a lovely evening, being entertained and spoiled, whilst I had to endure more PR shenanigans. The only two ''famous' faces in attendance were Craig from the original 'Big Brother' series (beyond Z-list by now I would have thought) and Gary Neville (who plays football I understand....) who I'm sure was only there because he lives in a penthouse at the top of the hotel. Beautiful girls were abundant, but unfortunately few had more than three brain cells between them, and none were wearing tweed - which rules them out as future wives........

The 'aulds' and my brother and his partner are coming for dinner tomorrow night. Tilly has been preparing by loosening some hairs to deposit in the main course, and herding all her toys into one place for ease of access.

Prince had a very wiry coat, and his hairs were rarely an issue. Tilly has very silky, fine hair that seems to end up everywhere. Quite how it ends up in the butter dish, all over the sink in the bathroom, and stuck to my monitor screen I do not know......

Monday, 26 November 2007

Vitnery Visits...

I took Three-Legged-Trotter (TTT) to the vets this morning. It was absolute chaos - I've never seen so many dogs in a confined space. I think my local surgery is almost too good, in that they will always try and fit you in, and will rarely say that you can't have an appointment the same day. This results in a long wait, and a very busy waiting room, albeit with quite a jolly atmosphere of comradeship.

Unlike Prince, Tilly doesn't mind going to the vets at all. I'd almost go as far as saying she quite enjoys it. I think it was probably a blessed relief from the tedium this morning as well. She greeted all the dogs and their owners in the waiting room, the whole time on three legs. I can see how canine amputees adapt so well to having a limb removed - Tilly's already scooting around nearly as quickly as usual without putting any weight on her back leg.

We saw Ed, who's the chap who diagnosed and looked after Prince before he was referred to the University hospital. He didn't seem overly worried and thinks that she's pulled either the ligament or tendon that runs down the side of her hock. He gave her an anti-inflammatory injection, and me the now familiar bottle of Metacam to administer over the next few days. She needs to rest the leg for the rest of the week, and then start building up her exercise again when she starts putting weight on the leg again. If she's still lame later in the week he'll need to take some x-rays. Of course, the drugs will take a lot of the pain away, so I'm dreading trying to convince her to rest over the next few days.

TTT wasn't at all concerned about the injection, tried to give Ed a thorough gum-washing, and then shot out to the waiting room to greet any new arrivals. She's somewhat deflated now that she's back home with no prospect of walking or proper games.

Does anyone have any ideas as to how to keep her mind occupied with minimal physical movement?


I have a strong suspicion that Tilly is going to be an accident prone dog. She's been feeling very sorry for herself today after having hurt her leg quite badly whilst out walking this morning. In typical Tilly style, she came flying down a long steep bank at a ridiculous speed and by the time she got to the bottom her rear end had practically overtaken her front end. She hobbled for a couple of steps and then seemed OK. Unfortunately, after a couple of hours sleep when she got home, her hind leg has swelled up and she's putting very little weight on it.

Of course, this means that she hasn't been out for her afternoon walk, her tennis balls have been confiscated to try and discourage her from running around, and she's been bored rigid all day. I feel so sorry for her, and would love to just pick her up and give her a damned good cuddle, but as I've described before, she's not really keen on overt displays of affection. Unless it involves her putting her tongue in your mouth of course.

I'm going to take her to the vets in the morning to try and establish whether it's muscle, tendon, ligament or bone related. I'm pretty sure it's not muscle, as the swelling is on the lower part of the leg, and think it might be a tendon strain. I did speak to the vet earlier and there is a small possibility of a minor fracture, but I think this is very unlikely. She's far less inclined to put weight on it after it's been rested, so my money's on the tendon. In horses, this is bad news, but I'm not sure of the implications for a dog. I really hope it's not something that's going to take a long time to heal - I'm not sure that Tilly or I can cope with a lengthy period of 'house-rest'. We may both go mad.....

My poor girl - it's the same leg that was mangled when she was a stray, and the reason she was picked up by the RSPCA. She's been through quite enough with that leg as far as I'm concerned. Tilly's so chirpy about life that even though she's clearly fed up and bored senseless, she still wags appealingly and tries to gambol around on three legs whenever you speak to her! She really does have a lovely nature.

Incidentally, the ball on Friday night was good fun. It was held at Chester Racecourse, and was a riot of scarlet tail-coats, drunken revellers, and poorly co-ordinated dancing. I'd been up in London all day before travelling back for the evening, and was tired, so I blame this entirely for my slightly 'squiffy' appearance. Of course, Saturday was lost to a dreadful hangover, and only today did I feel vaguely normal again.....

Tuesday, 20 November 2007

Trotters Travels

Tilly has been a true ray of light over the past few months. Carrying on the tradition laid down by Prince, she makes me proud every day. She's had so many new experiences since August, and almost without exception, she takes them in her stride.

As I mentioned in my previous post, she came across some potentially very frightening sights and sounds in Chester last week, but simply continued to wag furiously at any passer-by whose eye she managed to catch. She's getting much better with cows and horses, although we still have some way to go. Her recall is excellent now that I've realised that unlike Prince, who was rarely more than twenty feet away, she regularly explores a good two hundred feet away. As long as it's safe for her to do so, I can let her get on with it and be happy in the knowledge that she'll come flying back as soon as I blow the whistle. She hasn't left any puddles in the house for about a month now. She's a little angel.

One thing that she still enjoys, given half a chance, is a good old smooch with a stranger. Woe betide any person who leans down to say hello on first meeting. A very pleasant lady with two dogs did this only a few days ago, and was handsomely rewarded with a thorough gum-washing, courtesy of Miss Tilly. Unlike her earlier victim, who I posted about here, this recipient seemed to quite enjoy the experience and wasn't at all repulsed. This seemed to make the achievement slightly less satisfying for Tilly, but did save me some embarrassment......

Blurred, but still makes me smile regardless.....!


Thoughts of Prince are high in my mind every day, but even more so recently. As the Autumn morphs into Winter, and Christmas approaches, virtually everything brings bitter-sweet memories.

I wish I wasn't so bloody fragile. I didn't realise it when I set off into Chester with Tilly last week, but they were switching the town Christmas lights on that night. As Christmas carols drifted through the air I just wanted to die. I was so proud of Tilly though - she trotted happily through crowds, stilt-walkers, merry-go-rounds, and various other alien experiences without any apparent fear.

Reading Fionas post about her experiences with Yogi brought flashbacks of the car-park and waiting room at the hospital where Prince had his chemotherapy. There's a part of me that looks back wistfully at those times - we were together, we were trying to do something, and we were virtually a single entity we were so close. But on the other hand it was the most awful time - filled with fear, despair, and inevitability.

Patience wrote about a dream that she'd had where she was with her first Whippet, who sadly died in 2004. Again, in many respects, I'd love to have a similar dream, but on the other hand I'd have to wake up at some point. I'm not sure I'd ever want to wake up again.

It's Princes birthday on Friday. Well, his 'official' birthday anyway. I've never known when his 'real' birthday is, so I've always celebrated the anniversary of the day I got him as his birthday.
True to his regal roots, he had two birthdays - even if I didn't know when one of them was.

Prince would have been 10 on Friday. Young for a terrier. Virtually middle-aged. He should be here - unwrapping his own presents as usual, and looking forward to more at Christmas.

I'm going to a ball on Friday night and I'm going to try and celebrate his life by being jolly, happy, and the life and soul of the party. It never fails to shock me how lonely you can feel amongst crowds of friends.

Princes Birthday Cake - 2003

Wednesday, 14 November 2007

Peace & Quiet

It's rather peaceful this week, after the frivolity of the awards ceremonies last week. Fortunately, I managed to get through them all without getting too drunk and falling off the stage, abusing any existing clients, or trying to sleep with any prospective clients. There is another one coming up in a couple of weeks time though, so that could all change..... Cue blatantly opportunistic picture of attractive revellers for my under-represented male readers..........

It's great to be back home with Tilly, who's been doing her utmost to keep me entertained since I got back. Wubba, dumbell, Rufus, weasel and a selection of tennis balls have been offered at every opportunity, and I've been bitten and licked to death. It's good to be home.

Friday, 9 November 2007

Group Hug....

Whilst I've been moping and feeling sorry for myself over the past few months, there are others who've been going through their own version of hell. I find this sometimes comes as a surprise when you've been busy cocooning yourself in your own woes.

Yogi and Herbie are both suffering from different types of Lymphoma, and their wonderful 'parents' have been riding the rollercoaster of emotion and worry that I became only too familiar with when Prince was diagnosed.

Both Yogi and Herbie sound fantastic, and thankfully both seem to be doing quite well at the moment. I sincerely hope that they both continue doing so well - it's such a devastating thing to go through for all involved. Huge amounts of love and support are flowing in their direction......

I'm hiding in my hotel room at the moment, preparing for another round of PR awards this evening. Thankfully, I've managed to avoid getting too drunk and falling off the stage whilst handing out awards at the events over the past couple of days.

Tilly's been having a wonderful time with my parents while I've been away. I received video evidence yesterday of her running rings around my father in a game of 'ball-on-rope tag'. I'm not sure who'll be more tired when I get home tomorrow - Tilly, or her Grandparents!

Tuesday, 6 November 2007

Blog Fatigue

Sorry I've been so elusive recently.

I'm very tired, annoyingly busy, a bit dejected, lacking inspiration and suffering blog fatigue. I'm also about to go away for a few days to do the 'sponsor' thing at some revoltingly pretentious PR awards. I can't wait. Yeah.....

On a brighter note, the hyperactive eel-hybrid is in fine form. She's being a little angel as ever....

Back soon - refreshed and invigorated!

and out of the mist came.........