24 June 2008

Grey Granny

Granny has gone a bit greyhound today, with YouTube videos to enjoy at your leisure. I’m delighted because Andrew’s post will be seen by his convocation of bloggers and there’ll be a lot more people in the know about them. I guess between us, with the help of Indigo Dream, we’re doing quite a decent PR job for them, but with 10,00 greys retiring every year and less than 50% of them safely rehomed each year, it still has the feel of a Sisyphean task.

Andrew also asks:

I wonder what it's really like sharing your home with five greyhounds (to say nothing of the husband)? Do they get on each others' nerves at night and keep you awake?

The main thing to say about greys is that they are not ‘in your face’ dogs. They do not constantly seek attention and demand to be played with. If they are not having a walk or eating, they are sleeping or cadging a quick cuddle. They are most alert when a) you pick up their leads signalling walkies and b) you go into the kitchen to make their dinner. Other than that, they just lie in any number of ridiculous positions, including in one’s lap. At home at night, we don’t hear a peep out of them. We have three one side of the bed, one the other and one on the bed, and they wake up when I wake up. Occasionally Arthur ‘s hot breath in my face lets me know that he’s an old man now and can’t quite get through the night without going. I know the feeling...

On the boat, most nights are calm although Ranger has a tendency to whine from about 6am until I get up, allowing him to get into bed in my place. That’s the reason A goes to bed next to a brunette and wakes up with a blonde...and that’s the only way that’s going to happen! There may also be some early morning squeaking from Miffy but if you just roundly abuse her, she shuts up...

Once we’ve had a cuppa, the dogs are walked for half an hour and then they’ll be walked again at lunchtime and around 6ish. Dinner is served at 7, they go out for a post-prandial piddle and then settle down for a snooze while we watch the evening’s telly. Then it’s one last chuck out prior to bedtime. They are quite happy to be left if we nip out and have absolutely no problem when we cruise, enjoying especially their ‘out time’, when they can burst out onto the front deck and have a good old look-see. From experience, one of us now sits with them, as bridge holes are far too tempting for some of them.

And has our cruising life changed much since we got the dogs? Obviously you are mindful of their need for comfort breaks so you don’t tend to cruise for ten hours straight any more. And you also try to seek out more rural moorings – although having said that, they absolutely loved Manchester! But other than that, nothing has really changed except you have to guard your dinner with your life. Oh and you get hijacked on your walks all the time as people are seemingly fascinated by greyhounds...and that includes the three very likely looking lads we met once in Stoke, who seemed up for a fight but then clocked the mutts and immediately went all soft and gooey over them. So that’s a new one on the bandit deterrent list then - camera, catapult, AK47, Monty...

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