Monday is menosukhi day - the one in which I go all sentimental. For a few weeks this means you are sharing my memories of two darling creatures, Jade Dog MacWoof and Jasper Cat MacMeow.


Walkies!

I never actually used that word with Jade.  Never had to use words at all.  Like many a canine, she knew exactly what was about to happen the minute my eye even wandered in the direction of the lead.

There was a learning period of course. We attended puppy school exactly twice.  Jade was fine.  It was me who got the burr under the collar.  That 'trainer' had less idea about unidog than any so called animal handler I had ever come across.  The old-fashioned, choke-chain methodology did not suit my, or Jade's, temperament.  So we retreated to our wonderful back paddock and worked it out ourselves.  Very amicably too.  Gosh she was a quick learner.
Pondering the imponderables - and dog training.

As was Jasper.  He watched it all from the 6ft high fence and after her first fully successful sit-stay exercise, he deigned to join in.  He'd go and sit with her, then trot behind her down the assigned route, in order to get some of the food treat as a reward!  OH yeah, he'd worked out the fringe benefits to befriending the dog.

Once this sit-stay was firmly entrenched, we began to venture out to the local streets and park.

Jasper tagged along.  At first I thought he would only go a a few houses - the limit of his territory.  But no.  If we were going 3 kilometres that day, he was sure to keep up.  If we were going to the park he loved to sit under the swing and watch her chase balls.  He would join in if sticks were involved.

When we were walking I had to learn some things myself.  Like, Jade was a left-paw dominant girl and preferred to be on my right side and not my left, which is standard practice everywhere.  No worries.  Who's to say it matters?  Then, if Jasper was along, Jade made the pace, ensuring her brother could keep up by stopping and checking; he might have ducked under a bush for sniffing or gone up a fence for a bit.  Then again, he liked to weave in and out of her legs, brushing his tail against her tummy, making a figure of eight path all along the way.  For all the world like a ballet pas-de-deux.  I was just in the wings to ensure safety of the dancers.

This set piece caused a bit of a stir one day when a passing fire truck stopped and the firie in the off-sider's seat yelled out, "is that cat bothering you?"

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Don't think he believed me when I advised their relationship.  The truck hung around till we went round the corner…  Still the dance went on.

Things changed a bit when we moved from no. 36 to the beach cottage in the hills.  Property was one third the size and these 6-7 year olds were a bit out of sorts about that for a while.  They had to rearrange their own inner territory and for the first time Jade wanted to be the leader of the pack.  It took a few months, but we sorted it out (though she did become a fence barker…  her land had always been 900 metres, so, despite the barrier, if you were a dog within that proximity you got told about it!)  Jasper finally began joining our walks again, but never for the same distance and never quite the same dance.

In the garden though, they were rarely apart.

Next week, three J's and a rat...

Don't forget to check on Bozo and read about NAN from TAKE TOO

4 comments:

  1. Oh, what a wonderful story. My cat Hermie always thought my dog Nina was his dog, which made her "our" dog.
    Hermie would often accompany us when it was time for Nina's walk, but just as often he would meet us halfway.
    Nina was always surprised to see him, and made such a fuss over him, chewing his neck excitedly. Hermie put up with a certain amount of chewing, then extracted his neck from her mouth, and followed along for the rest of the walk.
    They were definitely not at all like a ballet, except perhaps a water ballet if Nina chewed too much, but they were best buddies.
    —Kay and Lindy
    coming to you from Bozo's Pets Forever blog

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  2. Hari OM
    Hello Kay and Lindy!! So lovely to have you visit and decide to stay. &~> Yes, very often if they grow up together and particularly if the cat is senior, there will not be the 'traditional' rivalry. No doubt about it though, the J's always amazed folks - including me!

    Thank you for sharing a bit of your story and I look forward to getting to know you. (..and isn't great to see Bozo back?!) xx YAM

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  3. I wait for menosoukhi day. Thanks for the memories J's.

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  4. Hari Om
    Yes - they were fine days!

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