Sighthound blog 2012
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(Photo: Timmi, Racey and Dasher waiting to go inside.)
This is the continued story of Italian Greyhounds "Dasher" 3, Racey 1 and Whippet Timmi, 10 years. The newest "happenings" are at the top, so the story unfolds from the bottom and up!
See videos on YouTube under my name: sighthounddotnet - email me or go back at any time to my website: sighthound.net.
Happy reading! - Janet
1st. blog July 2009 - 2nd. 2010 - 3rd. 2010a - 4th. 2011- 6th 2013.htm - and 7th blog 2014

December 30th
Far too late, but have a laugh seeing this crazy video. Son Adrian couldn't resist getting me the dog last year as an extra "impulse present", this year he topped it with the "Green Thing" and Svend thought I should play them togther - a happy cacophony! The only Christmas things that are out the whole year round!
www.youtube.com/watch?v=FjMEZmIcsz4

December 28:
Yes! We are still alive here and have survived Christmas Eve, where one eats and drinks far too much! Photo: A rare moment where the dogs are all in together! Listening to a CD playing fireworks to accustom them to the "Third World War" racket of thousands of fireworks going off over the whole of Denmark to celebrate New Year's Eve! We play it often starting a whole month beforehand. From the 1st of January, I have started a new page in the continuing life of my dogs...click here to see.
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December 16:
The living room windows after the recent snow storm! (The double glazing is so effective, that the outside is hardly melted by the warmth of the inside!)
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Below: Footprints in the snow remind me of flower patterns!
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The 13th December...
Weird skies like murky water colours on a morning dog walk.
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Right above: In the distance, the bridge over to the island of Fyn - and the sea. This is 10 kilometres away!
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Above: That's the sea in the far distance. Below: the day after and we get sun!
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Minus 8 degrees, so the dogs need all their coats on!

The 8th of December
and yet another silly sleeping position!
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The 6th of December

A very cold dog walk. You can see a line ofsteely blue which is the sea in the distance, over all the white clad roofs, actually 10 kilometres away but we are very high up here.
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Saturday the 2nd and the family came for a pre Christmas lunch - plus dog Bella, who is being looked after. The dogs got their life's shock on seeing her, but she knows how to tackle them, so all settle down in no time. Only bad photos unfort. Louis of 9 months is more interested in them now!
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Have you ordered your Track suit yet? An absolute "must have" for all IG's when it freezes! See Dasher in his here, it's in the softest fleece and so perfect.
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Order now from: www.togsfordogs.net/the-italian-greyhound-collection.html

Photos below: Above from first of December in sunshine - and then we got snow in the night: Taken same time in the morning on the second of December!!! What a transformation!
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The first of December!
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The morning walk: Freezing cold last night and light snow but as you can see, heartwarmingly sunny for once! Dasher is showing off his Father Christmas costume sewn by a friend - and yes I have ordered one for Racey, but maybe too late for this year, I should have thought of it in the summer! Racey has his "Togs for Dogs" warm (and waterproof) coat. Take a look at: www.togsfordogs.net/the-italian-greyhound-collection.html As there was no wind, I didn't put on their tracksuits with legs - but it won't be long...
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Silly play!

26th of November

Look at this closely! Racey INSISTS on sleeping with his "hero" Timmi, but it's not always he can sqeeze in comfortably. This is the scene in the bed beside me from last night!
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Can YOU figure it out? They are both fast asleep.

24th of November
Fantastic, tough Danish children!
I was highly entertained on the dog walk this morning and by children, not dogs!
We live in a very nice, fairly new area with plenty of families where all the children seem well cared for and nice.
As I approached a new road from the footpath, walking on the grass verge, the first thing I see at the top of the short hill I’m headed up, is two children aged about 12 or 13 standing talking. Then the girl steps onto a skateboard in the middle of the road shooting along at a fair speed due to the steep incline, I smile to her as she whizzes past and am no doubt caught on camera as behind her also on a skateboard and travelling at the same speed but just a few yards back, is the boy, filming her with what appears to be a video camera! They both shoot past me and around the corner at break neck speed and disappear out of sight! Well done for him filming whilst balancing on a skateboard at the same time! The modern child of today, whatever next!!
Shortly after this, I am walking across a huge grass area with a children’s playground and football area. There are swings, a slide a play house and a wooden tower. Here, I notice two boys of about 10 and 8 playing and the 10 year old has climbed up onto the roof of the tower and is hanging on in a squatting position about to slide off and fall. (The tower is covered in slippery algae and the mist makes everything wet!)
Here you can see the tower – about 8 foot off the ground.
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He instructed his friend to count down from 10 and as the boy started saying 10... 9... 8... I stopped up, all ready to whip out my iPhone and ring for an ambulance when he fell and broke both legs! On the count of “1” he let himself slip off and there was the most enormous earth-shuddering thud as he landed and to my amazement and relief, (and disbelief!) he got up unharmed! What children’s legs can put up with! Of course, according with regulations here, the entire swing area is covered in a thick layer of tiny pebbles for the very same  season.
The third event came as I was nearly home and walking down our road when cycling towards me comes a boy of 14 who used to be a neighbour, but his parents sold this summer when they separated and he now lives nearby with his dad. We have become good friends and he has confided in me several times of private matters and his ambitions in life. (He has a set laid out and precise plan that lasts right up til he's 21!!!) He is also fond of the dogs. (It is also he who is sure that he knows who our burglar was in the spring! He goes in the same school and smokes hash, so needs the money – but we have absolutely no proof, I'm afraid.) He stops and pulls off the road to greet the dogs and I ask him how he is and he says ”fine!”
But I take a closer look at him and I see that he appears to have his right arm in a sling underneath his jacket!
So I ask how come he’s so “fine” when his arm is out of action? Turns out he’s broken his collar bone and has 3 more weeks with his arm in a sling. I am dumbfounded and express my amazement at him cycling recklessly around with only one arm!! “Oh yes!” he says, “I cycle every day to and from school as well!”
Well, I told him, if I was his mother, he would get a lift because one little slip-up or wobble and if he fell off he’d certainly damage the other arm, and then where would he be? He agreed, laughing with ease at the thought, that then he WOULD be sunk – with BOTH arms in a sling!!!! So of course I couldn't resist telling him to please be EXTRA careful – but no doubt he’s heard that a few times and off he cycled to meet a friend. What children get up to on a misty Saturday morning!!!!

22nd November
Timmi has only half chewed his chew-stick and lost interest and is lying now with it between his front paws enjoying the situation, as Racey is killing himself with desire and SO badly wanting to steal the chew-stick away - but he dare not. He has too much respect for Timmi. He had to wait for nearly half an hour until Timmi got up and walked away!
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19th November

a slight temperature rise after a snap of hard frost last night, gave a VERY thick, wet fog this morning. Invisible cobwebs were suddenly covered in "jewels" and so pretty - their last chance to catch a fly this year ruined, as all is revealed!
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- and the last rose of summer drooping in the frost turned into dew. See also the two heavy drops to the right!

16th November

and Timmi is fit and well again! Running as usual now and a very happy dog.
Here they are having a good game of shake it, rip it, kill it with a VERY old football!
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Below is a shot og him still feeling bad two days ago, where the two "little ones" cuddle up to him in sympathy! However, now the knee-warmer is taken off, having done it's job!
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12th November:
Timmi is well on the mend. Even ran once around the house at full speed with real pleasure! But I only allowed the once. Best to be careful.
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Here he is, well able to look up now - and do most movements that he couldn't before.

11th November:
There was a bit of drama Friday night!
We’d just finished dinner – in the kitchen - when to our surprise, out comes Timmi from Dasher and Racey’s night cage.
He NEVER lies in there! He walked towards us with his head hanging down so low, I immediately knew there is something wrong. His back was humped, he was shivering (despite the very warm kitchen) and clearly in pain.
He looked like a dog about to throw up so I go outside with him, it’s cold and dark but luckily not windy.
He wondered up and down, pee'd and poo'd (looking normal, so something was working ok!) and still wondered around humped together in pain, me trailing along after him.
So I got the idea, just as you treat a colicky horse, it might be good to take him for a short walk? So we dressed up warmly to walk up and down our road – and outside of the street lamp glow there was complete darkness, so I wished I had a torch.
We walked slowly up and down for about a quarter of an hour, him still humped in pain and head held SO low down, really abnormal. He was still clearly in pain so I prepared his bed in the kitchen and fetched a very heavy metal  “puppy enclosure” that we have, dating back from when our grandchild was starting to crawl and when visiting, either he or the dogs were in it in our lounge so the dogs could be kept separate from him at times – yet not having to be shut away.
This I placed around his bed – with a bowl of water on the floor, so as to keep Dasher and Racey from pestering him. They always want to cuddle up to him. Racey adores him and is determined to sit with Timmi at all times.
Of course visions of going to the vet on evening duty, (at double the cost) passed through our minds! (Even though our dogs are insured...) We had NO idea what was wrong, but the humped up hang-dog look and shaking in pain, looked like a real bad stomach upset – or even bloat – a hundred illnesses passed through my mind!
Well after he laid patiently in his warm bed covered in a blanket and I crept in to him to pet him and sympathise and suddenly saw he had wrenched a toe so the quick had been bleeding a little. I thought it was strange tho' that he never limped or held the foot up to show me. See here:
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Boy, was I pleased, all this fuss over a little toe injury, painful as it would be, it doesn’t put the dog at death’s door! Whippets are fantastic actors. The more you fuss over them when they are poorly, the more they lay on the pathos, so it becomes very hard to tell what the truth is. They try to demonstrate with mime and masses of body language to tell you what’s wrong and how they feel. I have never known a dog breed more able to “tell” that this one!
We all had a very restless night and listened to hear if he whimpered or anything. Next morning, it was quite clear to me what was wrong: He had ripped up his old neck injury of March last year! The toe was just a co-incidence. Our theory is, that Racey has charged into him at high speed when playing in the garden – because he does this all the time - OR they are always taking a toy and “shaking it to death” between them and has he ricked his neck muscles with this? They are very violent. Then after he had rested after dinner - the pain and stiffness had come on.
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The day after, wearing one of the knee warmers Svend's mother kindly knitted for me donkeys years ago. I figure that warmth will help tensed and strained muscles. You can see he's miserable in this photo. Luckily, he is already MUCH better.
I had some painkillers left over from last time, so he’s had these the last three days and he is MUCH improved. He has gone from unable to hold his head up or shake himself and only walking slowly hunched in pain, to a normal stance, able to look up, able to shake properly - trot even run and bark at the neighbours! He has all the small movements of the neck in the part around the head, but the pains seem to lie in where the neck meets the shoulders. He seems to be getting better all by himself.
(Even allowing for the painkillers helping.) We will never again lead him by the collar on walks, but go back to using a harness.
So we hope he can get back to his usual self as he did before, so long as it’s only the muscles that are injured and not a slipped disc. But a slipped disc would never show improvement so fast? I know retired racing greyhounds can suffer from arthritis in their neck...just hope it's not that either...


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Friday:
A HUGE spider had fallen into the guest bathroom wash basin and couldn't get out. Too big to kill, I got it into a glass with the help of a postcard for a lid and released it outdoors. I had to leap back inside real fast as it scuttled back towards the door! It is a house spider - but it had better take a walk over to the neighbours...

October 3rd.
When I go on the morning walks, it has to be a “sniff-walk" for the dogs, as there is nowhere here where they can run free. (Apart from a car ride away.) So I always wait patiently. This morning Timmi stopped dead and showed he’d got the wind of something lying a few yards away in the grass. It turned out to be a mole!
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I don’t think I have ever actually seen a mole in real life although I know all about them from children’s story books and not least, passing MANY mole hills all around here. (Quite entertaining to follow progress each day – just so long as they aren’t headed for OUR garden!!! However, they have to cross a road first...) The poor mole was quite dead and very bedraggled from rain in the night, so Timmi enjoyed a good sniff. Next it’s the turn of the two terrors,
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(I do two walks as the little ones run around on a flexi leashes, which I could never dare use on a Whippet, as they can take off from standing to 90 miles an hour in a split second - the pull of a 15 kilo dog at top speed would be dangerous to say the least!) and so they too dashed over for a good sniff. It’s great for them to have extra nose entertainment.
Last time it was a dead pigeon they checked out every day for over a week, until somebody took it away.
The local cats are apparently too well fed to care about these extra vitamins that don’t come out of a tin!

Below, another crazy sleeping postion. Further on down you can see a photo of Racey fast asleep with one leg still outside the bed, well here he is again... just in case you didn't believe the first picture! He IS asleep!
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26th October:
No wonder my dogs are always looking great, always slim and with good muscles!

They run over 1 1/2 kilometres every day - or a good mile!!!
We call it the "Whistle game", as we taught them many years ago by blowing a soundless whistle in turn and getting them to run to and fro between us – we stand as far apart as our garden permits. They get a quarter of a “Frolic” ring as a reward each time.
Now I do the game alone and they run completely around the house! (Also saves half the amount of Frolic used!)
The big driveway (with its big gates) is separate with a wooden gate at each end of the house and a fence, normally shutting off the back garden. I wedge one gate permanently open so they can enter the driveway part and I stand waiting by the other one.
As they race through, I pass them each the “bait” as we call it, slam the gate behind them and move away calling the special command, to encourage them to run another lap, which they do! They run at least 10 times in one session and repeat this three times a day.
Today I worked out how roughly far they actually run - and this is beside their ordinary wild play and chase games - and regular walks!!! The house is just under 18 metres long and the sides, (including the enclosed Patio at the back that they have to run all around the outside of), are 16 metres.
So twice 18 and twice 16 is 68 metres around the house – times by the 10 laps and we have a distance of 680 metres!
This game is repeated 3 times a day so that gives 2040 metres per day in all or way over 1 mile!
I am a bit amazed!
Timmi often tries to cheat, and also he often fast walks the distance as it bores him at times, although sometimes he goes as mad and enthusiastic as the others, but the two Italians are crazy about the game and run at top speed every time!
This exercise keeps them in top condition and looking SO beautiful!
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Photo: The dog bed beside my chair in the evening! Racey HAS to sleep with Timmi and nowhere else! Timmi is his "hero"and he adores him! Racey also whimpers until I cover him up - all day long! He enjoys a good service here!

The 21st of October
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and I took Racey to the vet's doggy playground. I don't think I will go again. He really does not like it. He has never enjoyed himself like Dasher did and spends most of his time now baring his teeth to keep the others at bay and one puppy thought this was very entertaining and teased him all the time so he sure got "teeth baring practise" - which is not what I wanted him to learn!
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All my dogs are "racists" and like their own breed best!
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I can't see him ever relaxing and playing as mostly he likes chasing another dog, but no one here will be his "hare" and he is too nervous to allow himself to be chased. He tells me repeatedly that he just wants to go home. I get more fun out of it than he does, as it is VERY entertaing to see how all the varied dogs get along together and figure out mad games and so on!
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Above: The afternoon sun suddenly breaks through the rain clouds and highlights the neighbours at the end of our garden! View taken over the patio hedge from outside the kitchen door.

15th of October:

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We had the most unusual lure coursing training day yesterday on the pretty Danish island of Møn.  (Joined by 2 causeways and a bridge.) Read about the island, which is a tourist attraction: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Møn
We were not so many, as everyone moans about it being too far to drive and the weather was predicting lots of rain! We’ve had plenty of rain all week and unfortunately this turned out to be true for Sunday. (The weather men don’t always know what they are talking about, but this time they did, unfortunately!)
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Here, you can see the rain clouds that kept on sweeping over us.
We feel we have to go as our two friends who live on Møn, drive happily up to all the coursing days held in our neck of the woods - so how come that going to them is suddenly too far?
We arrived after driving 1 1/2 hours in non-stop pouring rain so bad we could hardly see out of the windscreen. (See how mad we are!) We found everyone standing around talking, (in the rain), and it turned out that our “leader” - a friend without whom there would be no lure coursing in Denmark as she is our mainstay, expert, drives all our equipment all over Denmark and gets us all to rally round, found she couldn’t drive her van with the trailer containing the ATV and coursing machine etc uphill into the field, it was far too muddy. So she got a lift over to the owners of the huge farm estate that owned all the land, but in vain. We can’t hold coursing just anywhere and certainly not on fields sprouting with the winter crop, that we were surrounded with!
So our “Møn friends” came to the rescue! They knew of a big grassy field, just at the end of their road and getting permission would be easy!
So we all jumped in our cars and drove along behind them. No one knew where they were going so there was this long procession of about 10 cars that must have surprised the locals as we went slowly along narrow, winding country roads, all through the main village of Stege, (SOO pretty, even in the non-stop rain) and beyond until everyone stopped along the side of a narrow road where a small ditch separated us from a really nice big field of short grass, perfect for running on!
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Svend's sensible oilskin hat, that our friends lent him! Right: The trailer protects the coffee and cakes from the rain.
Very quickly, the course was laid out, dogs warmed up and we had a great time – not least the dogs, who were wild to get started and were all willing to run in the rain, which they hardly noticed in their excitement!.
We always say, isn’t it crazy how we drive for miles, are often out for at least 5 quite tiring and energetic hours, (yesterday we were out from just after 9 am ‘til 6pm) so that our dogs can run for less than one minute!!! (Some dogs run twice though.) Not only that, as someone pointed out yesterday: All our dogs all HATE rain. Even the Afghans, who opted to run last so as not to sit in their car all wet and bedraggled for TOO long time.)
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Taking a short coffee break in the trailer to warm frozen hands...
Then our kind "Møn friends" invited us all back to their house, once a big farm house now a very attractive home with plenty of room for them and their three dogs. Here we drank even more coffee, ate sandwiches and cake and had a good time in the lovely dry warmth of a log burning fireplace and had some good chats and told doggy yarns and jokes. Some took their dogs in with them. (Ours sat in the car wrapped in their warm winter coats.) It was so lovely to feel the warmth after our very damp and cold experience. The funny thing was, that as we sat around the very long table in the dining room with room for all of us, the sun came out and the rain stopped!
Then we drove home again after letting our dogs play for a while in the big garden – until it started to rain again.
A good day was had by all - and certainly one we will never forget!!
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In the evening, Racey always wants to sleep with Timmi, but this time there wasn't room as Timmi really sprawled out under the covers after all the exercise, (after all, he IS 10 years old, but still runs well!) so this is Racey fast asleep - yes, he is soundly asleep, with one leg hanging out!!! Rediculous!

9th of October:
Left: A cat spotted by Dasher! It's on record already though and often hangs out here.
Right: A dead pigeon livens up the walk for them! They check it out every day!
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October 8th
Lately, we have had many depressing grey days and lots of rain - but suddenly there was a wonderful and "complete" rainbow over the neighbour's house across the road!
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Shown with two photos I could not clip together in Photoshop, as the sky has different hues.

October 8th
Nothing to do with dogs at all, but horses! A little video I made from our town's "Culture Evening" last Friday, where the tradition is, that the Royal Mounted Regiment parade through the streets. They otherwise parade every Wednesday! Beautiful horses - and what the poor drum bearing horse has to put up with! But he looks quite "cool" with the deafening racket.
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The amusing thing is, that driving along after them is a little wagon called "the Brush" in Danish, which washes and sweeps and removes every trace of "horse" from the streets after they have stood for so long, as is the case here, or as they ride on their way. Unfort. my video of it was far too blurred. www.youtube.com/watch?v=dzS8ijMrc-4

October 6th

Another crazy sleeping position!
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See how a Whippet kills a rat - clean and swift! This is her 20th - over a period of years.
www.youtube.com/watch?v=_TDSTfO9AJU&feature=em-uploademail-new


September 30
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Yesterday we took all three dogs to Lure coursing. It was a very grey, windy day, high up in a huge field with a view over the countryside in every direction! A howling gale got up and suddenly it was raining very hard so we ran for cover in the two tents we had. The lucky ones were in the red tent with the coffee and cakes!! "My group" was stranded in the flimsier black tent that I was literally holding up on one side with my back as the wind tried to push me over and flatten the tent! A friend quickly brought his car up to take the strength out of the wind and tie the side to his wheel!!! At last I could stand normally!
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We used the wait to have a good doggy chat and after about 20 mins. so we could carry on and every dog got his or her run - or two. All ran very well and they love it! Racey lost sight of the hare a few times but he is now very good to go off looking for it, (after checking I am still there and also he understands me pointing and waving in the right direction). He did more or less complete the course - for the first time. Only a few feeble photos due to the damp and rain - and not ONE of my own dogs!!!
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Galgo Zara (if you want a coat like hers, which is also waterproof, see: www.dyrforlivet.dk/coats.htm - Denmark only) and Greyhound/Borzoi mix Memphisto, plus Italians Nellie, Vincenta and daughter Athena.
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A kind friend had baked gluten-free makaroons with different chocolate fillings, (mmmmmm!) so for once, I could enjoy some of the home-made cakes! (Pictures are a bit red as the tent is red!)
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Left: Starting two Italians Santi and son Carmello. Right: The big red tent folds up to this small size!
No video due to the wet weather! Time to think about getting your dog coat from Helen: www.togsfordogs.net/18.html

September 28
- and strawberries on the way! They have suffered severely from a long patch of dry weather then lots of rain has inspired them into a last desparate attempt to make more fruit! I could have eaten this one except that a bird has beaten me to it and hacked a large chunk out of it! There's a lot of flowers too!
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September 27th
A little bit on the early side, but a friend has already started cutting her pumpkins for Halloween and putting a candle inside every evening! This is because all her neighbours want one of hers andthere's a waiting list! She has also, during a trip to America, treated herself to a set of all the right "professional" tools to cut out the figures with! Her theme this year is her cat! Very artistic!
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September 24th
The sun sets over the neighbour's (8 sided!) house at the end of our garden. Yesterday, there was the most fantastic lighting effects with dark, threatening rain clouds lined in fiery orange so it looked like the neighbour's house was going up in flames! See here, the view from the kitchen - though MUCH mere splendid in reality than my camera ever can show...
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September 18th
Dog's stomachs work in amazing ways! What they can digest at times, is incredible. We all know that they love to eat “unmentionable things”, (need I mention them? ha ha!) and then I could name for example the very dead and sun-dried mouse I dragged all of mine past on 2-3 successive morning walks and then forgot on the fourth, so one of them snatched it up and crunch-crunch, the mummified specimen was gone – with no stomach upset at all. I was furious because, if I had known the dog would get it in the end, he might just as well have eaten it on day one when it was a good deal fresher!! Or the time 3 large rounds of raw mince-meat mixed with with chopped onion, herbs and tomato puré were all gobbled up when our backs were turned, by a Whippet who had already eaten his dinner!!! Again, no problem afterwards - business as usual, as they say!
Well at the moment, two large plum trees in the garden are causing trouble. We have plucked the one, apart from some we cannot reach and the most of the other - but still they fall down. Dasher and Timmi fill themselves up with them! But Dasher’s stomach does not like the stones. In the night, after his dinner has passed by, his stomach has neatly held them all back and then he throws up the whole collection - quite "clean" as you see here! Photo from this morning:
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(I can even identify one in the middle as one kind, while all the smaller ones are from the other tree!! Some are discoloured by the stomach juices.)
I’m not happy about it and look forward to the season coming to an end. Racey does NOT like plums! He has stolen several from Dasher by a show of fierceness scaring Dasher into dropping his plum, then Racey stands over it and  doesn’t know what to do! However, it’s getting him down, seeing Timmi and Dasher munching happily, juice dripping from their mouths, several times a day, day after day – so today I caught him plucking his own! How dogs copy each other!
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Nice one of Dasher standing in the evening sun: "To bark or not to bark, that is the question!" Are the neighbours going to make a noise or not? He is waiting for some excuse...

September 15th
A ragged "pom-pom" of a poppy type that sow themselves all over the garden. Right: The two terrorists ask me what to do NOW?
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Three different butterflies in one shot! There are many this time of the year. They are good as extra decoration in the garden!

September 9th
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Yesterday we drove into the heart of Copenhagen to the world famous Tivoli Gardens. Tivoli has one day a year, where everyone can bring their dogs with them! The Danish Kennel Club uses the opportunity to have a dog parade and on stage, a series of talks/information, chosen breed themes, demonstrations of all things doggy. Great fun was had by all - except two elderly ladies we shared a table outside with a coffee, who had NOT known about the "Dog Day" event and one did not like dogs!!! Nor did they appreciate the extra number of people in there yesterday! There was every dog you could imagine in every possible size. Most could be petted and there were plenty of children enjoying this! We joined the parade only to be very disappointed at how few we were who represented Sighthounds. We were the only Italian owners, there was only one Afghan
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Left, the Afghan hound. Right: What you have to put up with when you are a dog on parade!!!
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Left the Spanish Galgos and right Racey and Dasher with one of the older Greyhounds, Tristan. Below right, one of the two adult Whippets, Dixi.
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Racey in the car. I couldn't turn around enough to get Dasher, who was directly behind me.
and friends who normally come, are at home expecting puppies and others in Norway to a Lure coursing competition - yet another at a dog show in Sweden! Also only one Irish Wolfhound. A shame. There were several Whippet puppies and 2 Whippets plus 3 Galgos and a Pharaoh hound. I will have to send a few mails around to everyone to drum up more dogs next year! Here is a tiny clip from the parade: www.youtube.com/watch?v=vx_qJMP9258 - I found it impossible to film AND walk with two dogs. I walked behind the 3 Greyhounds and a Whippet as I thought the Italians, who are supposed to be like a tiny Greyhound, looked great in their small size against the giants! We did certainly get much admiration and many questions afterwards!


September 5th
Yesterday morning, Timmi saved a cat’s life! Yes, one of the 9!!!
We rounded a blind corner of trees and bushes and walked out onto the grass verge on side of the “main road”, to see a cat come out of the field on the opposite side and start crossing over in that “I am the king“ walk, that they have.
Timmi immediately lunged forward barking loudly! The cat stopped immediately and turned it’s head to see what the fuss was about. At the exact same second that it stopped, the big yellow bus from the town, whizzed past at high speed! At this point, the road dips and goes quite steeply downhill and round a bend. So the bus, having laboured it’s way up a long, slow gradient, now “freewheels” downhill at breakneck speed – and the cat would have been hit and killed instantly.
As the bus hurtles past us, there was the cat still standing looking at us and Timmi barking more feebly now, as he knows he won’t get it. The cat then sizes up the situation: "Dog under control" and continues to cross over the road to our side and disappear into a garden opposite! Cats NEVER look right or left – which is why so many loose their lives this way - but Timmi made this one stop dead in it's tracks - before it was... flattened!
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Photo: Svend trying to watch tv as Racey has decided to chew a bone on his lap!

Sunday the 2nd of September
and a very exciting and wonderful day out! We took all three dogs to the famous Danish town of Roskilde, where there was a huge event called "Store Hestedag". ("Big Horse Day" - only the horses were all sizes and breeds and it was over two days!) Sunday we, members of "Myndeklubben", (the Danish Sighthound Club), were due to be giving demonstrations of Lure coursing to entertain the general public. This generated a lot of interest and the public could come at regular intervals, to let their own dogs try coursing, many with success! Timmi and Dasher ran 3 times each over the long day, and were perfect as were all the other sighthounds. Racey is very keen and takes off like a rocket out of hell, but as soon as he gets far away, he gets scared of leaving me! So he ran back and zoomed around looking for me amongst the many bystanders! Then I had to fast walk him all the way to where the hare was waiting, so he could continue, but he still does not want to be too far from me. He will learn this in time, I'm sure. It's lovely to have a faithful dog - so long as it lasts! See my fantastic video from the day. Horses and dogs, not to speak of people, (16.156 visited over the 2 days!) all mingling together with no problems. www.youtube.com/my_videos?feature=mhum
- and the most amazing co-incidence: I met Racey's half sister! They look NOTHING like each other, despite having the same American father, but I knew she was unusual as this breed must not have white parts here in Denmark. She is only 4 1/2 months old and looks VERY promising. She is also a very pretty colour. There is another sister owned by someone else here. See photos:
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I was thrilled to be able to see her - I had noticed that two had been sold to Denmark - the breeder is in Sweden. Racey, unfortunately said goodbye by peeing all over her top and trousers as the owner squatted to pet them both! DOGS, who'd have 'em!

Sat. 1st September:
The dogs doing gymnastic feats to look at dogs on YouTube on my computer! Back legs on the guest bed and front paws on my thigh! Svend took the shot.
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Monday the 28th of August and added to on Sat. 1st of September:

Timmi is slowly getting over his sorrow at loosing Magnus. He has never known a life without Uncle Magnus to look up to, plus my other Whippets in the past. He has got more affectionate and "needy" and is starting to play more with the "little ones"! Here, they have a squeaker put down in one of Svend's old socks with the end tied in a knot, so they are thoroughly killing the thing! A little video of them: www.youtube.com/watch?v=FzvSe-X-ouQ, so you can hear the "prey" squeaking in it's death agonies! They adore this extra realistic touch!
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This is what's inside: www.gemgreyhounds.net/store-2/squawker-scotch-predator-call/
Here's a picture - the "bellows" in the middle makes it squeak at the slightest touch! They recommend it for calling your dog to you - I think it would work a treat. Mine come running if I just pick it up!
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I always keep a close watch when they play like this, as I'm scared of them accidentally nipping each other as they grab and re-grab the thing, and the one in pain could get mad at this blatent breach of the doggy rules and bite back... but so far, so good!

Guests came Saturday the 25th of August

This was the summer starter - yummy! Wish you'd been here too?
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Wednesday the 22nd of August

The hedgehog came back last night and sent the dogs into hysterical fits! Not the same one as last year who had a white paw.
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I carried it into a distant flowerbed hoping it will eat some of my record many snails...it's really The Year of the Snail, this year!

Sunday, the dogs played with a plastic sack - a favourite game of theirs where they go completely wild, see old video:
www.youtube.com/watch?v=K8wQlIgpJ-E
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Below: Yesterday, some friends came to lunch with their Norwich terrier "Kurt". The dogs were shocked at seeing "the foreign intruder" and made a big scene, Timmi even slipping over in the race to be first to see this "possible prey thing", that had dared to come through the door. Luckily Kurt has been very well socialised and has strong nerves!!!! He only need a give a quick flash of his teeth to tame them and any behaviour that was not to his liking, he did a brief growl that sent them flying respectfully to a safe distance!
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After lunch, we all went for a walk and met a cat who also had nerves of steel!
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Kurt was first to go past, Dasher is straining hard at the leash and whimpering to get to it, whilst Racey keeps his cool!
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Kurt gets SO near, but the cat is not impressed, even with wheezing Dasher coming up from behind! You've got to admire it!
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I couldn't bring myself to pressure the cat by seeing just how close Dasher could get, much as I wanted to, and in the end, with Kurt lying down in the road, tamed and mesmerised, (those of you with keen eyesight will see the slack leash!) and Dasher still wheezing all frustrated and struggling in his harness, (whilst Racey can't see what the fuss is about), it VERY SLOWLY and carefully walked off. What a cat!

Saturday the 18th of August
Some great photos of Racey doing Lure coursing from the 5th of July, taken by Jean Byron! (Thank you!)
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I release him at the signal, (a thump on the back by the Starter, who has his eye on the "hare" and it's distance from the dog, which varies according to the breed!!!) and I video-film at the same time!
---See those bulging muscles - rare in Italians, common i "real" Greyhounds"! Racey does look like he's on steriods like a body-builder!!!

Friday the 17th of August

My camera can't do this justice and you all need your magnifying glasses out again, but this is a terrific view over the sea some 10 kilometres away over the house tops. I can see the bridge to the island of Fyn (a very faint grey shadow in the sky to the right of a white flagpole sticking up on the left - well you'll have to use your imagination then!) plus I can see the coast of Fyn itself. A brilliant sunny morning - I walk this way every day!
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Right: Same shot enhanced, so you CAN just see it!
A little shot of the bridge stolen from the web: -
Note house in foreground behind some dark trees in the bridge picture - the bridge is VERY big and high enough for the world's biggest cruise ship to pass under! (This has already happened! Watch this: www.youtube.com/watch?v=LgS0_1_jcBM My son drove all the way to see this event!)

Thursday the 16th of August
We all miss Magnus terribly and I have had trouble before in the past with previous dogs, who appear to have loved and needed one other so strongly, that they definately are in serious mourning when we loose one. This time it's poor Timmi who has never known life without "Uncle Magnus" and he is clearly depressed and often comes to us for extra petting. He can hardly be bothered to bark at other dogs on a walk now!!!! That's saying something!!! Two nights ago, he must have had some kind of nightmare as he woke me by howling like a Canadian wolf on and on and SO loud... in the kitchen where they sleep. Never heard him howl before! When I put the light on, he was standing by the mud room door like he expected something to happen from there. (The way the dogs come in when having been out.) I comforted him as one would a small child and got him settled down again - but it was quite upsetting to experience. We can do little to help him, just hope that time will fade his memory. If we could bring Magnus back - we would like a shot! He was EVERYONE's favourite and always got extra attention as his hair was so unusually soft and good to the touch.

Tuesday the 14th of August
Racey is one year old today!
- - from pup to adult: -
Photo taken 3 o' clock today!

Monday the 13th of August
Below: "Is she coming in to use the computer, or do we have to go out to her?" (They enjoy the morning sun on the guest bed.)
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Tuesday the 7th of August
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Timmi's birthday today! He is 10 years old and I just don't know how the years can go by so fast. Below is a photo from 2002 when he was still a puppy, lying with Magnus, who must have been 2 years. Uncle and nephew actually!
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Below: Last ever picture of Magnus taken by a friend at our mutual friend's house last Saturday. We had all been inside drinking coffee and enjoying dessert and our 4 dogs laid faithfully beside us on their rug, but in the photo I have got up, so they are starting to get up too. One can sense how tired he is - it was a hard day for him with so much activity.
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Monday 6th August 2012
We were forced to do it - and my heart is broken.

Poor Magnus, our most beautiful ever and SO loving Whippet, had to go to the vet. for the last time this morning.

In 2009 we went to a scanning at the Department of Small Animal Clinical Sciences University of Copenhagen, where we volunteered (and several of my friends too) to go to help a young up and coming young vet. complete her final exam thesis and she needed 10 male and 10 female Whippets (plus some other breeds) for scanning of the heart with a human scanner – and my reward was, though little did I know at the time, that I got a diagnosis of Magnus’s illness, completely free! So I was warned in good time.

They found he had a serious fault in his heart, which meant that about 30% of his blood circulated the wrong way round. We were deeply shocked and amazed. Whippets are one of the healthiest breeds.
His sister refused to be scanned but the ECG they also did prior to scanning, showed abnormality....so may it was hereditary?
Magnus had up to that time, been a very fit dog, ran 5 kilometres on the beach every day and we took him to lure coursing once or twice a month, a VERY strenuous sport that only the fittest can hold to.
But from that day on he couldn’t do coursing any more as we dare not risk him collapsing.
Luckily, he has been perfectly fit and healthy since then, with NO symptoms whatsoever apart from a natural slowing down due to age.

The vet. cleaned his teeth the end of May, so he was all set for a further 1 or 2 years. (I have learned over the years, that 13 is the most common age that Whippets live to.) This because despite daily brushing, his teeth still slowly got limed up – whilst Timmi's teeth, at 2 years younger, still look like a dog of 1 year old!
The vets could hear the abnormal heart when they checked him out, but there was nothing to be alarmed at.

Then just over a month ago, he started coughing, the first symptom of water in the lungs or around the heart.
This worsened, especially after each meal as the food put of course more pressure inside his chest, so I fed him 3 small meals a day instead of the 2 very small and 1 big that the others get.
I switched to a good quality Senior food too with less salt, which is important. A type that did not swell up – so many brands of food swell up to 2 or 3 times the quantity.

He slowed down even more, never ran and we allowed him to decide for himself if and when he would run (a gentle canter!) with the exercise we give the others 3 times a day.
I have also been monitoring him often by counting his breathing for 1 minute, and even after an hour’s rest, he was the double of Timmi the last few weeks.
It must be like having very bad asthma: VERY uncomfortable and tiring with a feeling of choking and the poor heart is pounding to do the job... something I know ALL about from my own asthma.

But this weekend he suddenly got really bad and by Sunday evening, we were in no doubt what we had to do next day.
So I rang the vet. at 8 am this morning (6th August) and we were there by 9am.
There are of course many things that a vet can do to ease the symptoms, but when we knew already that his heart was born faulty and that his age was against him – we knew he had no future, so he might as well get peace rather than suffer all the treatment - and as the vet. said, (who agreed entirely with us), he could only get a week to 3 months more anyway for all the trouble.

We were shown into a small room with a sofa and Magnus was soon making himself at home on this!
He got an injection to make him fall asleep. At 12 years, he is thoroughly used to having injections! This took a minute or two to work and then he never noticed when the vet carefully shaved his foreleg and very slowly administered the overdose that gradually stopped his heart.
Soon, for the first time for a long time, his chest was going up and down normally for a Whippet at rest, and his heart that could be clearly seen thumping against his chest gradually became invisible. The vet. held the stethoscope on his heart for about 3-4 minutes before she was fully satisfied his poor dear heart had finally stopped for good.

The important thing is, that Magnus knew nothing and suspected nothing - and got the relief he so badly needed.

It’s we humans who are crying buckets afterwards and missing him SO badly right now. He was my shadow, always checking on where I was and following me around.
But he badly needed to go into the best sleep he’s had for a long time and get peace, life had become a struggle to survive each day.

He’s had a good, long, “quality” life and been our favourite and often pampered more than the others but it never gets any easier to say goodbye... even harder, if anything, however, one cannot shirk the final responsibility.
He showed us yesterday, that he could hardly manage any more.

Good we have the other 3 to distract us and keep us busy...though they too seem very depressed and quiet.

Here is my favourite photo of him, taken in 2007:
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Friday 3rd August
The latest lure coursing video.
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On the way in the car! (In safety harnesses of course!)
A difficult day Wednesday for us cameramen! The course was a new place and just great for the dogs, but we owners couldn't see our dogs run, apart from the very start, and it was impossible to film except in small clips. However, the weather was PERFECT, a wonderful warm, sunny evening and everyone enjoyed themselves including some new people! I baked a cake (no picture) to celebrate that Timmy is 10 years on the 7th and Racey one year on the 14th! How time flies.
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www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Yfr-tITHbc

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Late afternoon and the dogs got all hysterical over a big fat hedgehog they found wheezing and snorting in the flowerbed. I carried it (gloves on!) to the kitchen garden and took some shots! Left, you can just see nose and one paw. Then hurrying away in a huff!
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A rainbow appears in all the many torrential downpours we are having at the moment. Note sky colour - it was really "black".
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Sorry, out of focus, but "they" have sent the "spy cat" again (see miles below) - trying to look nonchalant and not interested.

Monday 30th
Our friend's photos add to the collection here - and our memory of a lovely summer day out...-
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Here we are minus the photographer each time!
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A lovely study of Racey, lying at our feet as we went inside for coffee and dessert. (A chilly wind blew up but we were so lucky, there were torrential downpours back at home!)
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Right: Racey was very attracted to super-fast Sophie and several times invited her to play and found, to his thrill, that she was way faster than him! He is used to being the fastest back at home as Timmi and Magnus don't exert themselves any more!
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Around and around they go!
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Right: The host and hostess's two dogs taking a time out!

Sunday 29th
We had SUCH a wonderful day yesterday! Invited to a "five star+" lunch by some good "old" doggy friends together with other good "old" doggy friends and everyone took their dogs too, so there were 8 dogs in all!
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Above: Admiring the new Swedish style henhouse! (Hens had all scooted inside as they were given some fresh food!)
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The three "Italians" - the others were all Whippets.
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Old Magnus getting a cuddle! He's not feeling so good these days as his heart defect is now giving trouble.
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Racey getting a secret sniff - and right how to pose "Miss Sophie"! (A Lure coursing expert!)
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Left: Sophie and Dasher and right: All the three children were very loving towards the dogs. It was such a pleasure to go somewhere and be able to take the dogs along too. They had a good day out as well.

Thursday 26th

Poor Timmi has had a terrible day. I saw him at about 8.30 this morning, snap up an insect crawling over the flagstones and then instantly change his mind and try to spit it out again. I assumed it was a beetle, (it had seemed "dark" in the split second out of the corner of my eye and beetles can ooze "nasty" substances!) but unfort. everything indicates it was a bee! He was caughing and snorting out of his nose. He managed the morning running exercise very slowly though and we went on a walk - with him snuffling and hanging his head down in pain. When I got home, I looked in his mouth several times but could see nothing, but judging by the snuffling and the fact he couldn't eat, it had stung him up up in the throat. From then on he was in awful pain and clearly showed us too and I counted his breathing rate and it was double the normal when at rest, from 13 to 29! I wasn't scared he would go into shock as he and Magnus are professional bee eaters, even wasps and they have killed with a special technique. They have often been stung, which has never put them off one bit!!! I even have a photo of Magnus with his lip swelled right up! At one point I got out my mobile to make an appointment at the vet. but then changed my mind - so many things just need less panic and more patience. Lunch time he couldn't eat and knew it was no good even trying, so I cut up some tiny chunks of softish cheese thinking this would be easier to swallow and he ate the lot in some water as he needed liquid too. Then we could see small improvements and he seemed to suffer less and less and although he has slept a lot, we made him walk outside here and there and we could see he was easier and happier and by the time it was supper time, he ate his usual big meal with no problem. Phew, you do get some scares with dogs!

Wednesday 25th
- we are getting such wonderful weather - just for a few days!
Grandchild on a visit and we go to a very Danish amusement park that we like very much called BonBon Land!
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/BonBon-Land
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Here my favourite dog in BonBon Land! Right: I was highly amused by this uninhibited young woman who was lying on a bench in the sun where we all sat to eat - reading a book, which conveniently shadowed her face! I couldn't resist this shot.
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He puts his hoody up as protection against the loving, patting claws! I already have had scratches on my cheeks!
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Playing English Monopoly outside as it was a wonderful evening. For the first time for over a year, I won!
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Breakfast: David chose "sausage horns" and one Danish pastry and Svend a raisin bun plus a Danish pastry! Yummy! However, I can't eat any of it due to gluten intolerence!!!! Below: From the garden right now!
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Saturday the 21st of July
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At long last we find a free Saturday and can take Racey to the vet's young dog playground - a "free for all" under supervision - which we pay for! Racey has difficulty finding anyone to play as it is such a crazy melee with SO many running around all at once. None were to his taste! But it is good that he learns that dogs come in all shapes and sizes and how to get along with them all, despite their big differences in both looks and behaviour. We are so glad that our vets (Slagelse Dyrehospital) take the initiative to do this. See the short video.
www.youtube.com/watch?v=-KJUc7jFw7g

Thursday the 19th of July
Dasher's cage works like a magnet on children and here is our grandchild trying it out for size - yet again!! (But even his father has been in it and locked the door!!!)
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Left: Bribing Racey to go inside - and he does - and then both deal out kisses and licks!!
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Left: Timmi gives an ear-washer! Right: One can see that the family sure feel at home with us, ha ha!!!
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A lovely peach coloured rose by the front door. They are doing SO well this year, but then I did give them some fertiliser for the first time in 4 years or more and one can clearly see they responded and exploded with flowers!

Sunday the 15th of July
Here are some odd photos. We are otherwise slaving non-stop in the garden and not least, the kitchen garden. Have now filled up a chest freezer with strawberries, red currents, and blackcurrents - now is the season for cherries and raspberries! Soon plums and apples. It never stops! We will enjoy the fruit all the long winter through.
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Can you spot the hare in the field beside the road this morning? A very big one. (You may need a magnifying glass again. My camera is no good for long distance shots but I gave it a try...) The Whippets didn't see it due to the long grass by the road - otherwise they would have had a fit!
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Anyone out there know what this beetle is? Killed by one of the dogs!!!! (Big as my thumb nail...)
(It is not shown in a well illustrated insect book that I have.) For Danes only: I found what it was by asking on this website: www.fugleognatur.dk- but it's only in Danish. A site well worth joining. In English it would be called a carrion beetle. I found it near a compost holder so... Read about it here: www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/97055/carrion-beetle
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Left: A friend gave me one plant last year and it sowed itself and became about 20 this year, including the one seed that escaped this pot and turned up in some stones as seen below. SO pretty. Right: A rose in the rain!
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Left: Racey in a dog bed looking cute! Right: Racey and Timmi sleeping on the sofa and looking funny! Quite artistic!
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Left: Pom-pom poppies! They grow up from seed every year but I never know where they will turn up! They are enormous this year. (Table top height!) Right: I sprinkled some of our compost around the flower beds in the spring, and there must have been a potato because lo and behold, I have a potato flowering along with all the other flowers! Very pretty.


the 5th of July
We went Lure coursing on Tuesday. It was a wonderful evening where the weather was perfect and not too cold for once. I took a few video clips to remember it by. Do have a look!
www.youtube.com/watch?v=c7jStcFYv9o
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A lovely young Azawakh caught my eye!
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The two most elegant sighthound breeds.
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Racey and Faye, both 10 months, hit it off right away! Picture on right: Very patient Salukis!
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Not to forget the delicious home-made cakes and coffee, (this is not all!) where the Mazarin cake was extra highly praised!

Racey could run a little longer now and took off like a rocket, so our coursing leader nicknamed him “Krudt Kaj” on the spot! (Gunpowder Kaj!) He is still at the age where he runs faithfully straight back to me – although this will change soon, ha ha!!!
Italians can be VERY independent and go deaf when it suits them - more deaf than hearing!!! We took Timmi as well although he is 10 years next month, he is very fit and he thoroughly enjoyed the run. Unfortunately I had the camera on "still photos", so no photos of him running, such a shame.

1st of July
Just the sweetest little miniature pansy has sown itself between som stones! The flowers aren't much bigger than my thumbnails.
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24th of June
At LAST Racey understands Lure coursing! I am used to all my dogs running straight away with no problem at all, but Racey has always loved running after Dasher best!!!! If we could have tied a black Dasher-like toy on the cord, he would have run from day one, but white plastic strips do NOT look like his "rival" and best friend! But yesterday, at 10 1/2 months he could run a small part of the course and off he dashed, as you can see at the end of the video. First was Greyhound/galgo Camino, (rescued from Spain), who is the "spitting image" of Dasher, even facial expression, so we tried to photo them together, (see below. I was severely handicapped by the fact that Racey was asleep on my lap!) Then a younger cousin to Dasher called Dino, then Dasher, (who ran perfectly as always). He was started by my friend, while I held Racey so he could get madly jealous seeing Dasher run off!), then Racey, who I started as I filmed! We all had a wonderful day!
www.youtube.com/watch?v=VLWkH_ObjIo
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To the right: Young Dino waiting his turn.


21st of June
The Italians had been chasing each other all over the garden for an hour nearly fighting over a bone they both wanted. First the one had it, then next minute the other one. At the right moment, Timmi lunged in and got it from them! They respect Timmi - so here they are, suddenly best buddies at the unbearable sight of him eating "their" bone!
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He did let them have it again though. He is a kind dog.
See this old video here from when Dasher was a puppy, how Timmi lifts his paw off the bone and lets Dasher take it from him!
www.youtube.com/watch?v=AE1afg_cOXg
Below: The day's pickings from our kitchen garden - two days in a row! Yummy!
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17th of June
See what Dasher's half sister Zoe can do (one of MANY tricks!): www.youtube.com/watch?v=7dqOdD303qU
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Racey asleep in the evening with Magnus.

6th of June
Photo: After mad race in the garden!
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See some of the mad games of chase here (where Racey is faster and more agile than Dasher now!):
www.youtube.com/watch?v=23IoIRPEFB0

2nd of June
I'm so broken hearted. Been out all day and a quick peek in the nest late afternoon shows all are gone - taken by the Magpies, I guess. Yesterday there was a bit of a commotion and I went out and clapped my hands to scare the Magpies off, but of course, they are not idiots, and if Blackbirds make a fuss, then they KNOW there must be something to fuss about! Nature is SO cruel.
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I can hardly believe this is true... and I was so looking forward to seeing them grow up... ugh!

1st of June
How time flies! Two new photos: The Blackbird chicks are now vigorous and hungry. The other photo is how Timmi likes to sleep - all of my dogs like to be covered up, even when it's 32 C i the summer! I thought this looked too comical not to show!
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30th of May
News from the nest of our lighting fitting demented blackbirds:
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All hatched out and ready to fall out - soon!
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Above: IG's make excellent pillows for larger dogs!

28th of May
It's a complete mystery, but the abandoned Blac bird's nest, which I left untouched by the front door is now missing it's two eggs! I can only think they were stolen by a Magpie - we have a couple in the locality, BUT, I have discovered another Blackbird's nest, on chest level, so easy to photograph:
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Newly hatched by the look of it, and even one egg still "occupied"! I will leave them in peace for a few days - so watch this space! MIGHT or might not be our "lighting fitting fanatical" Blackbirds, it is around 3 weeks ago since the eggs appeared in the last nest, so if she built it really fast... (and she'd already laid two), so then she laid the remaining four and there's 21 days incubation time...

24th of May
On a dog walk, I meet one Day Care mother and her 4 Day Care children also out on a walk and they visit the horses. Only one horse could be bothered to eat the grass they gave.
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The little boy in the photo, who was the most interested, commented when the yearling lifted his tail and started to "poop"! So I said: "Yes, and he has no nappy (diaper) on, not like you!" The little boy just loved this concept and kept over and over repeating that the horse had no nappy!!! It really amused him. He’s probably gone home and told his parents about the nappyless horse who just does it standing up!

23rd of May
All dogs fit and well again - what a relief. Here are two extra photos of Dasher and Racey doing Lure coursing on Møn - taken just as the hare turns and changes direction, see entry below the 12th. Thanks to the photographer and her brilliant camera, Sanne K. Nielsen! (PS Racey doesn't have to wear a racing muzzle while he is still learning - that's for the professionals!)
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New, short video from the puppy playground mentioned below!
www.youtube.com/watch?v=yYxuIO0dlj8

22nd of May
9 am: Oh my gosh!
Timmi the Tea leaf, (rhyming cockney slang for thief, that two English friends nick-named him in 2007 when they stayed with us for 10 days and he several times raided their rooms for edibles including biscuits and a large packet of nuts!) - has done it again. We had to get up early this morning to get Magnus to the vet for a teeth cleaning "operation". I did things differently and accidentally left my jacket in the kitchen with a huge bag of what we call ""bait" (for the game where they run to and fro), in the pocket. We were only gone about a half an hour but he found it and ate the lot! (The other two, shut in their cage must have been dying of jealousy!) So boy, is his stomach looking full!
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Luckily it is a brand that hardly swells up at all, (see above after 2 hours soaking in water), otherwise we would have panicked back to the vet’s – to have him pumped out! Instead, I am monitoring him very closely! Here he is right now - with Racey who adores him and knows something's up!
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But I keep making him get up and move around – and I took him for a long walk when we got back. I figure I should treat him like a horse with colic!
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4pm now and Magnus is glad to be back home from his teeth cleaning ordeal - minus 2 lower front ones that were wobbly so he has some stitches and is on pain killers - but seems fine, just a bit woozy. The vet could hear his heart is faulty - he has been scanned once, (it's hereditory, as his sister had similar) - but agrees he's in very good condition and we always give him plenty of exercise. He ate a lovely chicken breast for dinner after fasting since yesterday evening, ready to be anesthetized this morning! Timmi is feeling MUCH better and the food moving down as it should, but he isn't having any food until tomorrow!!!

18th of May
Racey went to the vet's puppy playground again and this time he did play with the other dogs - but ended up falling in love with "Molly" - a Dansk/Svensk gårdhund! (A Danish/Swedish farm dog.) He had to share her with a little black dog, (who she seemed to prefer!) but he ran non-stop after her the whole hour we were there!
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A short video: www.youtube.com/watch?v=yYxuIO0dlj8

15th of May
A mad sleeping position last evening! Racey and Timmi on the sofa.
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Saturday the 12th of May
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Lure coursing on the lovely island of Møn, at Marienborg Gods, who kindly lent us a big grass field. (Have a read here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Møn) High winds, (ruining my videos because of the dreadful noise) and super-high grass (and see the dandelions in the photo above!) didn't stop us having a wonderful day. I filmed some of the other dogs, so none of Dasher this time but he dashed around as usual, did loose sight in the long grass for a second or two, but easily found the lure again... but best of all, also Racey ran after it with enthusiasm for the first time! He could only run a short way due to his young age, then he ran straight back to me, so happy. I was happy too, as he will be very good as soon as he gets "bitten" by the sport!
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See the boring video here - but it serves to remind us of yet another great day!
www.youtube.com/watch?v=faIGHAr097o

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Above: The gateway into Marienborg, from 1866. Below: All the thousands of dandelions have "painted" this saluki's legs bright yellow!!!
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Tuesday the 8th of May
Another cat, so well hidden in the grass that Dasher never noticed it but stood still pondering for some hair-raising seconds!
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It's the dark blob upper left for those without magnifying glasses! See it's beady eye, photo below?
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It never moved, even though we were so near.
Those of you waiting in suspense to hear more about "our" blackbirds and eggs will, like me, be very disappointed. They have abandoned the nest! My brother-in-law came Thursday and parked his black van in our driveway quite close to the door as he always does and I think this was too much for them as I haven’t seen them since! I am giving them the benefit of the doubt for a few more days, but the two eggs should by now be 5-6 and no sign at all of any parents.
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The cherry tree is incredible, just COVERED in flowers - but alas, only seen two bees visiting in this cold weather.
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A wonderful rhododrendron - Magnus is watching a wild bee - so he can catch and eat it! See it in left corner...

Wednesday the 4th of May
Dasher is three years old today! Congratulations to his sisters!
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Always ready for a game!

Thursday the 3rd of May
So far so good: 2 eggs in the nest by our front door! Ready for scrambled eggs, says Svend! I don't think so.
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Wednesday the 2nd of May
Magnus is 12 years old today!! Here he is sunning himself together with Racey. He has slowed up a lot but seems fit and well.
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Tuesday the 1st of May
More Blackbird news! The Blackbird couple abandoned the new-started place they found in the hedge...
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and the day after, I found they had started AGAIN on top of the lamp by the front door! Well, I know when I'm beaten, so ok, they can have one "litter" and I might take an egg or two so it's only 2-3 babies...but then all went quiet, like they had abandoned this one too and all weekend no activity or flurry of wings, except for the male doing lots of very loud singing, so I assumed they had found a place nearby. But this morning "she" is sitting tight in it and a casual walk past with camera switched on and I get these two shots. I don't yet know how much she will tolerate, but the front door will have to be out of action for about a month! So watch this space!
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Saturday the 28th of April
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Racey goes to the Vet's Puppy Playground again and does interact with the other dogs much more, but still not letting his hair down and actually playing. I made a video this time: www.youtube.com/watch?v=_6Qy3BDYGes
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The scene at my feet! Right: The young girl in charge - she deos SO well and it's NOT easy!!!

Thursday the 26th of April
The Blackbird couple have finally found a place in the hedge at the far end of our patio with the faint hope of not being discovered, so I will give them peace. Below right is the scene in the dog bed beside me while I eat breakfast this morning. ALL want to sit near me, three succeeded!
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Wednesday the 25th of April
This Blackbird couple are "lamp crazy" and soon switched their attentions to a lamp at the back of the house where there's a covered patio we sit outside on sunny days! I saw a few strands on the ground yesterday evening but couldn't see the nest. Well chosen, as the nest will never get rained on but in an even worse spot that NEVER could work out! This morning I discovered it and by 11 o clock, it was again removed - but not before I took photos of it!
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She was already working on the mud-lined bottom and would have been finished by this evening. (But see how near the door it is!) A vertical electricity cable helped hold everything up, so she was able to build faster this time.
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I waited 20 minutes to catch her sitting in it enjoying a brief rest. I just suddenly stuck the camera out of the door - having previously practised the manouver so I was out of sight all the while. Then I stood on a chair and took the above "aerial view" - not finished, but still a work of art.

Tuesday the 24th of April
Groan! More Blackbird problems! Now the stupid couple started to build a nest on top of our outside light by the front door! Of course, the first twigs, grass, moss, even string and bits of old plastic, fell down, but after a day of hard labour she finally got bits wedged up there and then more bits piled on top, so it started to take shape. See first photo. I say "she" as it's the same as with my Canaries, the male indicates the spot to build and checks and approves at intervals, even moving the odd strand as if improving her handywork and also goads his mate on, but the poor female does ALL the actual work single-handed! (Does this ring a bell?!!)
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Left: The nest this morning so far. Right: she is waiting for me to go away, so she can carry on! See the incredibly long strand dingeling down from her beak! I toyed with the idea of giving in and letting the couple raise their babies, meaning careful supervison of the dogs, all guests using the back door plus newspaper on the stones to catch the droppings but decided it had better go - and this as soon as possible so she can find a better site. So I cleaned the lamp (and the pile on the ground) and put up the Danish flag to scare her away! This worked, as it interferred with her invisible landing runway-aproach to the lamp top. She tried hard, but couldn't land and start all over. I ate breakast with the door open and Racey stood guard! See below. He's just starting to get interested in chasing birds.
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Above, all cleaned up and the "threatening" flag in the way!
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Racing watching - then Racey made a dash for her!
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She was not put off at first and spent a lot of time thinking about things, but I am pleased to say, she has now given up. I dread to think what their next plan will be... Below, a beautiful butterfly I noticed this morning on a dog walk.
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Just about the prettiest I have ever seen - for real. Wonder what it is called....?
The 25th April a friend replies: "Sommerfuglen hedder påfugleøje og er almindelig i DK." "The butterfly is called "Peacock butterfly" and is common in Denmark! Thank you. It can be seen here in English: www.bbc.co.uk/nature/life/Inachis_io

Monday the 23rd of April
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We take Racey to the vet’s puppy playground every Saturday morning - except when there's guests for lunch or coursing. I haven’t been able to photo anything due to rain showers or general damp mist but at last this time, he played with another dog! Usually he just wants to go home. A chubby 3 month old black Labrador pup scared him stiff at first but on nearer acquaintance, Racey found they could play and he even enjoyed the pup's attempts to catch him up. The others gasped at Racey's speed but they should just see what he COULD do in our garden!
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The little Danish/Swedish farm dog seen on the right was playing another sort of game......!


Tuesday the 17th of April
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I am so sad. I had to pull this beautiful Blackbird's nest out of the hedge by our kitchen and patio. Far too near the house and where the dogs sit and sunbathe. If the dogs hadn't smelt it, the constant chirping of hungry chicks would have attracted them and it was in easy reach at waist level. The day that they fly - if they get that far - they get just one short flight onto the lawn and are instantly caught and bitten to death - as we know from bitter experience. There was NO WAY these babies could have survived, so the nest has gone to my compost container... I am so sorry about it... I love all our many song birds. However, we have too many Blackbirds so they have difficulty finding good nesting places and this makes them choose stupid sites and fight a lot. In the meantime, isn't this a work of art? Such a shame I had to destroy it...

Saturday the 14th of April
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Racey is now 8 months and we go to lure coursing again. He was not very interested but we had a good time with many enjoyable conversations with all our friends and the weather was sunny. Dasher ran brilliantly as usual - he just LOVES it.
See the video here: www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gwnm_9jjTsk
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Some of the cakes!
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Right, two exhausted Pharaoh hound babies retreated into their cage for a good sleep!
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Some of the Italian gangsters! Right: Chico wouldn't run and is comforted by "dad" but Chili, (the cream dog), his first time EVER, ran perfectly! See the video here: www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gwnm_9jjTsk Dino (blue coat) ran well too, but I missed him unfortunately - due to chatting too much with the others!!! (Dino is a nephew to Dasher!!!) So now at last Dasher has some good competition!
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Chico watching!


Friday the 13th of April
We deliver Kris og Nardo back to their owner and go for a wonderful walk for 2 hours on her local beach!
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There wasn't a breath of wind and though chilly and misty at first, the sun came out so off came the dog coats!
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Svend with all the dogs. Racey has always been able to jump up with total precision onto someone's lap. Here he has surprised Ninette!
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Nardo has found something dodgy to eat, ugh!
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Afterwards, a delicious lunch! Here, the dogs are hoping for some of the special "beer bread" - but they have already eaten their food!!!

Tuesday the 10th of April
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After some cold, windy and rainy "walkies" Nardo washes Racey's right ear and face, while Kris, feeling left out, "dries" Nardo!

Monday the 9th of April,
You should just see me cleaning SIX dog’s teeth every morning before they have breakfast!
Racey has to wait outside as he leaps madly about and annoys everybody but the other five go like lambs to the slaughter into our small “mud room”, which has good lighting – sunny even, if the weather’s nice and I get brushing, starting with Magnus who’s soon 12 and who is nearing needing a teeth clean by the vet under anaesthetic. This is expensive and dangerous in his age, so I am very particular about his teeth and any hint of inflammation is kept down by dabs of “klorhexadine” afterwards - as it’s called in Denmark – very effective. I use the “poultry tasting” dog toothpaste that smells revolting and costs more than the double of human toothpaste! Then I switch to the two guests who have their own brush and toothpaste.
I get each dog backed into a corner of the small room, so they are forced to give in and of course they are aware that breakfast will be served straight afterwards so they can think of little else. Racey comes in last. He is under the impression that the toothbrush is a chew toy, so I have to battle it free from his teeth to brush here and there only to get it seized again – but I get done. This brushing pays dividends later in life as they get so used to it and inevitably the plaque piles up as they age, some more than others. For example we got Magnus at 1 1/2 years old and his teeth were already well limed up. Timmi, who is 10 this August and Magnus’s nephew, has PERFECT white teeth still, so I only go through the motions of cleaning him! So he’s not left out of the poultry tasting. Each dog can hardly wait for it to be his turn!
The dogs mix well together, all sit/lie with each other and although the Whippets wouldn't mind if they never saw an Italian Greyhound ever again, they are very kind and give in to being "hotwater bottles" and wearing the little ones like "decorative shawls".

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Left, Dasher and Kris with Racey squeezed in at the back. Right, Nardo is chewing a bone beside tolerant "Uncle Magnus", temporarily disturbed by jealous Racey. We don't give bones when the guests are here as these can ruin the best of friendships in just seconds, but Nardo had found this one amongst all the toys!

Saturday the 7th of April

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All except Racey guarding by the gate!
Now we have 6 dogs! We are looking after two guest dogs, Kris and Nardo while their mistress is visiting her daughter abroad. All dogs know each other well, so there is no problem. (We avoid giving them chew bones for the duration though!!!) Svend takes the two guests on their walks, to help. Unfortunately, the weather is bitterly cold with a hard wind from the north and rain yesterday. Here are some photos. Below, Svend off on a walk - they are wearing Dasher and Racey's coats as it wasn't quite so cold. Right: Kris enjoying his Chinese cabbage after dinner!
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Left: Dasher shares with Kris and right: Looking on enviously while the guest dogs eat their dinner! We give them food in two groups. Mine eat first, but have apparently already forgotten!
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Cute photo of Kris and Nardo about to sleep after dinner. The camera makes Nardo look huge, but they are the same size. (I think he has toothpaste on his nose!)
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Even more dogs waiting to get inside after a game in the garden!


The dogs having a mad game:
www.youtube.com/watch?v=K8wQlIgpJ-E

Wednesday the 28th of March
The spy cat from last year was back this morning! Doing what cats are good at: Sitting still so they think they are invisible! You'd think "they" back at spy headquarters, would have the sense to send a red roof-coloured cat instead? However, what it is REALLY spying out is when it can come into our garden and use a certain sandy spot as a toilet - in danger of it's life!
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Above: The cat killers safely behind the gate - they haven't seen the spy! Yes, look closely, there are four of them.

More nature shots: Came home from a dog walk and had quite a wait while a female blackbird finished her bath! Not worried at all about the dangerous audience! Again, you'll need your heavy duty microscopes to spot the bird!
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Sunday the 25th of March

We went to the year's first Lure coursing - and a record number of dogs, no less than 65 of whom many ran 2 times as is usual. To handle this, we were all totally streamlined. Tho' this didn't stop the cord breaking and other small hitches! Dasher ran with Sorento, who was doing a come back after badly injuring a dew claw (happened now several times, poor dog) so they are now bandaged up so it can't happen again and he looked just SO smart in his get-up - we agreed it was the latest spring fashion!
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I'll have to get some for Dasher! They ran in fine style. Not so Racey, who would sooner run after Dasher than a lot of plastic strips, so we ran part of the way together! He just wanted to go home. It was also a long time to wait, as he was drawn number 37 and more than ready for his morning sleep by that time! I have never had a dog who was so little interested - but I know I only have to wait...or get a toy dog looking like Dasher, which we could tie on the end and drag round - THEN he would run!
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Two galgos from Spain, Zara and Camino - there were also three others - a joy to see...
See Camino's first ever lure coursing run: www.youtube.com/watch?v=hPive8EspxE
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A greyhound borzoi cross who runs so well now that he is grown up and his friend Italian Vincenza -Santi and Carmello in background.
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Salukis are so beautiful in the sun! Right: The table where we pay our dues.
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Racey in his bed. Zara pulling a young helper! Below: Racey jumps up and says he wants to go home!
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Thursday the 22nd of March

The Cat Collection starts up again! With the good weather, out come the cats and this one I've seen before but not caught on camera! In excellent camouflage colours, we were nearly past it, when cat-hater Dasher spotted it and sounded the alarm!
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Racey was interested, but willing to give it a pass - he is no "cat killer" - yet!!
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It stood it's ground hissing and out of respect for it, (and it could get mad and attack them), I couldn't go any nearer. Those of you with magnifying glasses will just be able to see it! It is well camoflaged!
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Dasher is still barking while Racey prepares to leave, unable to see what all the fuss was about! See how Dasher's back goes up - more than the cat's! Below: After a long, active day "assisting" me with the gardening yesterday.
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Friday the 16th of March
On the 14th., Racey was 7 months and a huge 43 cm high - and still growing!!! Pictures underneath: Every evening, when I finally come in the lounge to relax in front of the TV for a while, both Dasher and Racey leap up onto my lap. I have a thick blanket so my lap is more accomodating and they get a lot of petting and fuss, then they try to sleep but usually Dasher gives up and lies somewhere else after a while. He has never slept on my lap. Here they are vieing with each other before I sit down, each wanting to be the ONLY one up!
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Magnus and Dasher sleeping while Racey chews a bone on top of the sofa! Below: Tug of war in the garden today!
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A bouquet of crocus in the sun today!

Thursday the 8th of March

A wonderful heartwarming "rural" scene this morning! Two of the three Day Care mothers I often meet on dogwalks, each with their four to five small toddlers aged from one to three years, had gone over to the ponies beside the road and managed to attract their attention so they came over. One lifted each of her children up to touch one of the ponies. Amusing to see. One pony is only a yearling, standing beside her mother. These children are so lucky to grow up round here.
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Unfortunately, my camera is not good at distance shots. I was standing on the other side of the road behind a hedge, so the that my two Whippets wouldn't bark at the horses. The sun was just coming out! (I have sent these photos to them!)

Monday the 5th of March

See some VERY interesting art from Pam Foss in Maryland USA - here's one of her paper sculptures called "Hide N' Seek". Do browse through her website: www.pamfosssculpture.com - and don't miss seeing the YouTube Video!
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Sunday the 4th of March

A great toy - which Racey loves! I bought a squawker from this website: www.gemgreyhounds.net which is a greyhound charity organisation helping unwanted Greyhounds in America. Look for “Predator Call Squawkers" by visiting the Gem store. Racey is completely wild with it! We keep it in one of Svend's socks for it's own personal safety!!
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Racey "kills" it over and over again by shaking it to death or tossing it about (and fetches to my feet if I throw it) and at every movement the "bellows” part of it pushes air through a reed in the wooden end so it squawks in dreadful death throws!
I don’t know how we would manage without it, as he loves to have short but viciously mad play periods and beating the hell out of this toy is his favourite thing! It is strong enough made to hold to the treatment – just the sock needs renewing occasionally!!!
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Took Dasher and Racey to Valby Parken in Copenhagen this morning, where many Italian Greyhound owners meet up every Sunday at 11 am and boy, did they have fun! Plenty of room for racing around and they are dots in the distance at times. I found it difficult to keep eyes on my two - here are a few shots. Racey was too nervous to stray far away and he was very good to come when I called. It was his first time ever. He has not been big enough up to now to run for far for so long time. He is in red coat. Dasher is too busy with the others to to more than just check that I am still following! He is in black with red belt. We had a great time although the wind was biting.
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Saturday the 3rd of March:
At last spring appears to be on it's way - wamer in the day though still frost at night. Here are some spring flowers (at this time of the year, we are desparate to see spring flowers and the shops are full of them too. Also two ladybirds have found each other after hibernation! We can't have too many of them as they eat all the greenfly/aphids.
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These are some of the first to bloom in Denmark and are SO welcome after the long winter.
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Two ladybirds sunning themselves!
We took Racey to the puppy playground this morning - did so last week as well, only no photos. For the first time, he showed signs of wanting to play with the other dogs and just briefly dashed about several times in play, even gave a woof with enthusiasm! - so wonderful to see after all these times where he just wants to go home. Here are a couple of feeble photos. (He gets fed liberally and petted by the other dog owners! I wish they wouldn't.)
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27th of February:
A frosted erantis/aconite
from early this morning.
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25th of February:
Grandchild on a stay - and the italians insisted on BOTH being on his lap at once! They washed his ears and "kissed" his face!!
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First there was one... then there were two!

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But Racey won!
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And of course it's a "must" to squeeze into Dasher's cage! Even adults have been in there!


22nd of February:
More "waiting outside in the cold" pictures - see how Racey has grown!
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20th of February:
Racey was 6 months on the 14th - how time flies. We've been very active but unfort. no photos.
With careful measuring, Racey is bigger than Dasher and stands at 41.5 cm. His legs are bigger than Dasher's and there are still "growth lumps" on his front legs! Here is Dasher's idea of relaxing in a dog bed:
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Underneath, a dog pile up! Spotted on the guest bed in my office!
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13th of February:
Thick mists this morning and everything had been painted by "Jack Frost"!
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12th of February:
Svend couldn't give me a lift, so I walked with Racey all the way to the vet's puppy playground yesterday morning. 3.3 kilometres each way! Then an hour there. (Nearly killed me - and we have a HUGE very steep hill to go over and my broken leg is still painful and of course got worse!) He still doesn't play with the other dogs, although a big brown dog did invite him and he DID respond and would have played, but the young woman in charge stopped it "just in case" as young and frisky big dogs can't really "frolic" with little ones and he was wanted in the next enclosure with another big dog. To keep him warm, I got him to run through the agility tunnels and also to jump over them and back, which he is very good at and enjoys. Here he is watching another owner help her own puppy plus a Cairn terrier through the floppy one!
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Below: My friend Terry's Chihuahua called Daisy, says: "When will winter be over?" See below. Good shot!
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Do you clean your dog's teeth?
Magnus has teeth that have needed cleaning by the vet 2-3 times - he is nearly 12. His teeth were badly limed up when we got him at age 1 1/2 - yet Timmi, his nephew, has PERFECT teeth with no sign of anything at the age of 9 1/2! So there is a big variation. However, it is good if you can brush their teeth daily. Never too late to learn. Whippets are more willing than the more hysterical Italians! I use a dog toothpaste, which is flavoured with chicken or poultry and they love it. I do it before their breakfast, so they are very distracted by the thought of the coming meal and will do anything I ask so as to get the meal served quickly!
I nearly gave up with Dasher, who played around and would NOT let me get near his teeth, but after about 6-7 months of age where I gave it a try every morning, he let me do it just fine. As a reward - and he is the last dog to be cleaned, he got to lick my finger clean! Patience is rewarded.
This is how I do it and the recipe for success:
I use a “medium” brush like my own. I put a “worm” of toothpaste on top of my left forefinger, (it has to last 4 dogs, see!),
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which I can dip into with the brush held in right hand, whilst at the same time, holding the dog’s mouth open and pushing back the lips with the left hand fingers – you’d be surprised how well you can hold the lips open with left hand!
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Left hand shot shows the worm of toothpaste always ready to be dipped into from the top of my finger.
I do all this in a well-lit small space, as you have to back (and trap) each dog into corner, so they give in and stand still!
With Racey, I can already do all his teeth. Admittedly skimpily and quickly but this is faster than my progress with Dasher! This morning, he lept up and licked the entire "worm" of toothpaste off my finger in one big lick and was standing with his mouth full of it! I was furious as dog toothpaste costs a fortune compaired with ours! But nothing to be done - now I have learnt his newest trick!
(Racey is licking hard in the photo!)
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So I strongly recommend to not give up trying each day – it may as I say, take months of perseverance, but it is worth it to save the dental cleaning bills when the dog gets old and also a full anaesthetic is dangerous for them too. If you drag out having the op. for a while their gums can affected too and who knows what pains and loose teeth they get....
So get started today! PS "They say" you can't use human toothpaste.

10th of February:
Dasher is asking me to play with the laser light, which he knows is up on the washing machine! I have cut it down quite a bit as he goes mad zooming at top speed around the garden but he needs to be fresh to play with Racey! Racey plays nearly non-stop all day and is a much more lively dog!
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6th February:
See how well Dasher and Racey play and wrestle together:
www.youtube.com/watch?v=vunbz5rg9oo

5th February:
Yesterday, we visited our youngest son and daughter-in-law, who have just moved house. We took Racey with us as he can't be left at home for too long and it's all good experience for a young dog to get out as much as possible.
Our oldest son came with "Bella", who he is looking after for a few days. See a video with Bella from last summer:

www.youtube.com/watch?v=D3V_L3C_UpE
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Racey was scared of Bella when he first saw her, he is not used to strange dogs and got an awful shock when she came bounding into the room! But soon he plucked up courage to sniff! She is a wonderfully well-balanced dog who can mix well with just about any other dog.
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Young David puts them together! Right: Bella getting a cuddle from her carer! (She is enjoying the view over the garden outside!) Below, true Italian style, Racey knew how best to decorate the furniture! He could be a photographic model!
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Below: A poor little Robin I found that had just died in the cold and toppled out of our hedge. So pretty...so sad that many birds are dying in this extremely cold weather.
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4th February:
We should have gone to the puppy playground with Racey this morning but it's FAR too cold, now minus 13C or worse. The dogs start walking stifly as their legs go numb. Luckily for the two small ones, I now have the Togs for Dogs tracksuits, so this helps them A LOT. Dogs have a special blood circulation system in their feet, which enables them to walk in VERY cold parts of the world, and why the Alaskan sled dogs can survive, but small, thin and boney legs just freeze up! See:
www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2085646/Dogs-paws-warm-frozen-ground-special-circulation-system.html
(Read to the bottom!) The only reason to put shoes on a dog, is because of all the salt everywhere. It's the LEGS that need covering.
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Photo from 9.20 this morning in minus 13 C (8.6 F) - brrrrr!

3rd February:
It is SO freezing here, minus 10 C this morning, so bitterly cold and all this time, Racey has borrowed Dasher's
track suit, being as he's "only a puppy" and I finally ordered a new one from England on Monday eve. Tuesday it was sewn and sent -
and what a good servic
e, it arrived today, Friday! I can only say that EVERY Italian Greyhound should have one of these in their collection of coats - it's invaluable because it covers their thin legs. Here he is reluctantly modelling it - made with a little room for growth, as he is still getting bigger and bigger! Plus one to the right that shows his "American lines"!
Get yours today from: www.togsfordogs.net/18.html
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Racey is now house-trained (apart from a couple of poo-accidents entirely our fault for not understanding him), there has been nothing in the house for a month or two! All my dogs develop a technique to tell us when they want to go out. When I am in my office, Racey scratches on the guest toilet door - this is the signal! It's less clear when we are in the lounge watching tv - but we still get the message! We have luckily also got to the stage where we don't have to accompany him outside every time, we can on occasion, merely peer through the window! A big help in this cold. He now has only one canine tooth left still to fall out - I have seen him eating one, so that's how they disappear!

31st January
New photos:
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Left: "what shall we do now?" and right: Waiting to get the bone from Timmi.


29th January
Snow came to our part of Denmark in the night! Up to now we have just had a smattering - it was Racey's first sight of snow and he hurtled out of the door early this morning together with the others and screeched to a halt on the first wide step and stared and stared! The others had all gone their ways, so he carefully stepped out into the mysterious cold "white stuff". Later he tasted it and ate some.
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In the big garden, he wasn't sure if he could run in the snow, but then after some thought, raced around excited by the new sensation!

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At the vet's playground yesterday I was given a free sample of dog food for neutered small dogs by Royal Canin. I wouldn't feed it to my dogs, the main ingredients aren't very inspiring and it has the BHT in it that I try to avoid, see: wikipedia.org/wiki/Butylated_hydroxytoluene but it is just great as a treat. They are wild about it and the particles are microscopic and even with a hole in, (!!!) so you can give many treats for correct behaviour before you are giving the dog a "whole meal" as some treats are far too filling. As a new treat, it seems very promising.

28th January
Those of you who have followed from the start, will remember that I took Dasher weekly to the vet's puppy playground in order to "socialise" him and had a lot of fun - plus made some videos
. (One of my favourites: www.youtube.com/watch?v=aBzZ3ML-CzA) I was forced to stop when I broke my leg and in the meantime, the woman who organised it, has left. Well at last they have started up again. I was there with Racey last week but it either rained or snowed non-stop (so no photos possible) and he got a very bad impression of what it was all about and he is not interested in other dogs. He loves people! We went again today and he still cannot see any point in going, nor is he the slightest bit interested in meeting new friends! He did sniff a few but only for half a second and he kept warm but going through the agility tunnels and springing over them, plus learning how to zig-zag. I can see will have to go about a million times to get him to interact with the others! It was minus 4 degrees and light snow, but no wind, luckily and he "cried" all the way home to tell me what an ordeal it had been. In the photo it looks empty but there were MANY dogs and much playing and loud barking.
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See the look on his face: "Please take me home!"
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He was good to leap over the red tunnels or run through at high speed - but Racey only interacts with people! He got petted and given tit-bits by all, but he more or less ignored the other dogs! There are three enclosures, one for tiny dogs, one for medium to small and one for big, bounding, lively puppies and young dogs, who would just trample on the little ones without realising. This is why it's so good.

27th January
Racey's wobbly tooth fell out in the night and this morning he is fine! One down and three more to go!
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Left: My poor lupin that was SO confident it could flower in January, is buckling under with the week of severe frost we have had - plus a fine snow! But just alongside is an erantis ready to open, should the sun shine! THESE are the first flowers in the spring here in Denmark, closely followed by snowdrops - I can't wait!

26th January
Dasher seems 100% fit again, but I do not let him chase the laser light, to be on the safe side, as he runs at break-neck speed. Racey has half torn out his left bottom canine tooth during mad play with Dasher. I am hoping it will fall out by itself with no infection. When I clean all their teeth tomorrow morning, I will use disinfectant on the gum.
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Upper jaw to right you can see his lovely new incisors and the new canine peeking through the gum alongside the "fish-hook" all puppies have!
The bottom one was bloody after the accident and is loose and practically hanging out of his mouth by the new canine - just hope I don't have to get the vet. to remove it - I dare not yank it myself - he would probably never let me see in his mouth again! May fall out tomorrow... if he does a tug-of-war game with a toy!
I measured Dasher today very accurately and he is the 41 cm that he has always been. I then very carefully measured Racey and he is a whopping 40 cms!!!!
I never dreamed he would grow SO MUCH in such a short time and he will now be bigger than Dasher as he's not finished yet! He still has very noticeable "growth knobs" on his front legs!

24th January
Something happened to Dasher last Friday. He was reluctant to move and certainly did not want to go out at lunch time. I had been vacuuming further away in the house, so didn't hear or see anything and the dogs appeared to be sleeping. It seems like he's fallen on his back in some way and banged himself over the hips/root of the tail and there as a swelling at the base of his tail - on top, so his hips looked strange because of it. He walked carefuly limping on back right leg tho' this quickly went away and he walked normally but kind of hump-backed in pain. He could do every movement, so nothing was broken. We kept him in his cage most of the afternoon, which he was happy with (a bad sign!) and I gave him half a painkiller that was meant for Timmi when he hurt his neck last March.
Here is a picture I tried to get of his hips:
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Saturday, he seemed OK but no exercise apart from a walk on leash. We were busy with guests, who were "all over" Racey, which meant Dasher could relax! His back looked normal again. Racey got SO tired with all the attention, he fell asleep really peculiarly, half in to Timmi's bed, (Timmi to left, same colour as the blanket!) back legs still outside and tail curled over the bed next door! See here:
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He was so soundly asleep, he didn't hear the guests one by one tip-toeing in to have a giggle at him!
Yesterday, Dasher again seemed to have back pain and so one more half a pill and rest and today he is fine and has run about like normal. He has played a little bit with Racey too. So I hope it will mend with no troubles - whatever he has done to himself. We let him decide now how much exercise he wants. (However, no wild laser light games at the moment.) He is my lure coursing star, so we don't want anything wrong with him - it's such fun to go to and see him fly!
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It's midday and Svend has just turned the computer to "sleep" when Racey decides to surprise him and wash his ear! My dogs know the time of day - and know that now we will play with them and then feed them lunch - so they can't wait!

19th January
As shown below, Racey HATES any kind of coat and especially this "trouser suit", so he just let himself collapse and roll over all limp this morning - he simply went on strike! He had to be lifted and "assisted" out of the door! Once we get going, he's quite happy though, trots along with his tail up and forgets all about it.
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Here he is on strike at my feet trying to look pathetic - while Dasher uses the waiting time usefully by washing an ear.

18th January
Racey has never stopped growing at 90 miles an hour and is now nearing Dasher in size at only 5 months! See on the photo that even tho' he stands behind, furthest from the camera, his feet are bigger. His body is shorter, but still growing, Dasher's is longish. Here they are in the kitchen as Svend makes his lunch! It amuses me to compare such very different types and bloodlines, each beautiful in his own way.
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16th January
Would you believe it, middle of January, the harshest, coldest winter month it's still so mild that I STILL have lupins with sturdy buds under the impression they kan flower! This is unheard of! The weather is SO mild - tho' we have just had two frosty nights. There is even a tinge of blue on the top, I wonder where this will end...just hope there's something left for next June/July!
lupin

14th January
Yesterday - and today, it was SO cold that I tried Racey in Dasher's winter "Togs for Dogs track suit" from last winter - not used yet as it's been so amazingly mild:
dragt-walk
He fits it well as he has grown SO MUCH. He's standing here convinced he can't walk (see tail between legs!!!) and looking over his back as if to say "what on earth is this thing?"
He HATES coats in any shape or form. So we went for a nice walk, Dasher wearing his VERY warm black "outfit" made by Nina in Finland! Racey is 5 calendar months old today.

12th January
No pictures, but in the evening, Dasher
"told" me that the hedgehog was back - way out there on the lawn. I quickly got him inside and fetched a torch and localised it far away on the lawn, ran inside and opened a tin of the cat food, rushed out again and what did I find? It was just an old BALL lying in the grass out of the range of the torch - no hedgehog at all. The laugh was on me, what a disappointment! So the dogs ate the cat food added to their own food over two days and were very keen on it! But what a waste! Obviously the menu up to date is nothing worth for a hedgehog to come running round here and be barked at for! Or, it is SO cold now, he's hibernating how he should?

8th January
Racey is almost 5 months and his new teeth are very much under way! So funny to see - they get new teeth just like human babies with the front ones first! He's been chewing non-stop on bones - and our home - ever since he first arrived, so I can't say if he is chewing MORE because of the new teeth! He is a big home and shoe destructor! It's a long time since I had a dog who chewed EVERYTHING, you name it! He has to be distracted and a chew bone placed in his mouth as soon as he grabs the furniture! See his 2 new teeth here, I managed to photo this morning with camera in right hand and grabbing him as he was jumping up to me, with my left.
dog teeth-dog teeth on way
(We will ALL be glad when he looses the "fish hooks" at the corners!!!)
He's used to me groping when I clean all their teeth every morning. He is under the impression that one chews the brush, I still have to convince him that this is not the case! He sees the others stand nicely and is SO keen not to be left out. This is how it helps if one has several dogs, as they learn from each other.

6th January
Took Racey to a dog wood - but it was a failure. No dogs and a stiff wind coming off the sea that was very cold, so he stayed at our heels all the way and just wanted to go home again.
dog wood
Underneath: Sleeping together in the evening, take a good look! People with only one dog don't know all the fun they are missing!
togetherness

January 4th
Cut all the dog's nails today! Cutting IG's nails can be tricky - they HATE it and can, like my friend's two, dive under the sofa as soon as they see the clippers! Well Dasher LOVES it, at I have explained before in 2010, I cover the top of this cardboard box in delicious liverpaté and while he licks it all off, held safely in a death grip by Svend by collar and arm around chest, I clip away! Racey was totally nonchalant and made no fuss at all! The Whippets stand nicely as I bend over them and trim - with a treat as payment for each foot!!! No problem with them, they alwasy submit themselves entirely to their humans but the Italian temperament is completely different and they trust NO ONE, their worst suspicions are aroused with the slightest thing!
nnail cutting box
This was Racey's first time ever on the table - and he loved every minute! So I really recommend this method. Such a "painless" way to cut small claws. Below: A cat picture taken on a morning walk - Dasher spots them wherever they are! I have photo'ed this one before. It loves to run across the road in front of the Whippets, who have a fit and get SO stressed up!
cat in bushes-racey cowers
Right: Racey HATES having a coat on - and is not keen on going for dog walks! Here, I have dressed up Dasher first in his "Togs For Dogs" coat, complete with lead and he's all ready to go, and look who is cowering in the corner NOT wanting it to be his turn! He wouldn't mind if we left him behind - I've tried! First dog I have ever had who isn't crazy to get out on a walk! He's alright once we get going though. At first I tried to "jolly" him along and gave lots of treats, chatting in over-happy tones but now I think it's actually best to ignore his behaviour and act like I can't see all his signels to me and just behave at normal as possible. If I appear not to notice what he's trying to "say", then I think he will stop doing all the "acting".

January 3rd
I met the day care children this morning on the walk with Dasher and Racey. We have met before, but this time I manged to get my camera out - usually too busy watching the dogs don't jump up at the children or lick them and so on! None of them could give any dog biscuits due to their thick mittens, so here is Racey enjoying all the fuss while Dasher is more interested in my handful of treats and therefore out of camera jumping up at me!
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One little girl had sat down and "gone on strike" on some steps, (she's centre of left photo, still pouting!), but as soon as she saw the dogs, she got up and came running! (All are under 3 years and they go on quite a long walk every day, no matter what the weather! They are simply SO cute!!! )

I have bought some tins of cat food for Onslow, having read that cat or preferably kitten food is best for hedgehogs and dog food "no good", tho' surely it must be better than nothing? Now we have to wait for him to turn up, whenever that will be! We can't just leave it out as rats and so on would love it! The dogs would go berserk to get to it as well!
cat food

The 2nd of January 2012
Onslow the hedgehog came back tonight and this time Racey barked! At each bark, Onslow flinched badly, so I got Racey indoors. I carried Onslow out to the lawn where he ate two "Frolic" dog biscuits, then later he came back to the patio but didn't want more, or even some delicious liverpaté I offered! See his pink foot - just the one, very unusual!!!!
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Svend trying to concentrate on something thrilling on tv while Racey wants petting and keeps "kissing" him!!!
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The 1st of January 2012!
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Best to start how you mean to carry on and what better than photograph the latest cat - lurking in the bushes? (Showing yesterday's severe frost). Dasher barked, and waved his tail so hard the camera shows a blurr, whilst Racey hadn't a clue as to what all the fuss was about! (Note how his spotty coat "made for Dasher by Santi's mom", matches the bushes - quite a fashion parade!)
We survived the ghastly New Year's eve cacophony - Racey hardly noticed the fireworks after the first one or two, but we had been playing a CD with fireworks on all month), but Dasher was more scared this year, such a shame. Timmi doesn't notice a thing but Magnus is very miserable and clinging.

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