Saturday Nov 16th 2013.
I woke up at 7.30 and lay comfortably in my bed dozing for half an hour as I like to do (rushing about too early in the morning gets the day off on the wrong paw) until mum and dad came down to let me out. I had a pee in the garden, woofed at and chased a pigeon (infuriatingly, it got away), and returned for a bite of breakfast before hopping in the car and being chauffeured to the Down where I helped locate the sheep.
After a run around for an hour I returned home for second breakfast and settled down for a nice nap while the family went out.
I COULD NOT BELIEVE IT when an hour later they were back with something that looked very much like a shrunken black version of me. What on earth was it? I sniffed it and it squeaked at me which made me jump. Then it wagged it's tail.
There is a NEW DOG in the house!
What does this mean?
It must just be visiting.
Sunday Nov 17th 2013
It isn't visiting.
Last night it was put in a large cage that appeared on Friday near my bed (and looking back I see now I should have realised Something Was Up when mum unpacked it and sprayed it with disinfectant). Once inside it the Small Thing made a right old racket which prevented me from going to sleep.I growled at it to tell it to be quiet. It was then that I realised it was sitting on one of MY blankets!
When it woke up this morning my peace was immediately shattered before I'd even got up. It started shrieking. That set the tone for the rest of the day.
Yesterday it didn't want to play. Today as soon as it was let out of its prison it jumped on me before I knew what was happening. I am not used to this kind of treatment. It's usually me that jumps on other people, not the other way round.
I growled at it.
It didn't take any notice.
It just squashed itself flat against me.
Mum took it off.
It then tried to eat my food (which is no longer on the floor where I am used to it being all the time and therefore readily available whenever I want it, because apparently the biscuits I eat are too big for it and may cause it to choke. I won't tell you what I think about that. Its bowl of food is always on the floor, which I think is Deeply Unfair. I tried to eat some of it to prove a point but it is DISGUSTING, so I was forced to spit it out. Yuk. Mum must have realised what I was thinking because she gave me a fish for dogs square. This mollified me a little.
Wherever I've been today it has appeared, which annoyed me.
Even more annoying, when I chased it away this afternoon it dived under the sofa and hid there. I am too big to get under the sofa. I find this Deeply Unfair.
In the end, I tried lying listlessly on the floor staring at the wall and barely wagged my tail at all when L came to sit with me. It worked, because he rushed off to tell mum something was wrong with me. She examined me, ruffled my head and told me to get a grip, which I didn't think was at all understanding of her.
It was a relief when it got dark and I could take myself off to my bed in the sitting room near the fire. I was about to climb in and settle down for the night like I always do, when guess what? The
I'm sorry, but I've been putting up with it all day long. I growled, and then when it didn't move I bit it.
Mum removed it from my sight.
Monday Nov 18th 2013
I hoped, when I woke up this morning, that the last two days might have just been a Very Bad Dream. I kept my eyes shut and crossed my paws and wished it with ALL MY HEART, but when I opened them the small thing was still there.
It was let out of its prison cage and jumped straight on me again. I didn't bother moving this time- I just lay there and growled until dad removed it.
It has started following me everywhere. I suppose it is quite flattering in a way, but I AM NOT telling it or anyone else that.
Cleo hissed and swore at it when the silly thing ran straight into her room without asking, which was Quite Funny. Ha! It won't make that mistake again. I suppose I did feel a little bit sorry for it, especially when it came running over to me afterwards and I realised that it was shaking. I gave it a sniff and gruffly told it Cleo treats me like that too. Then I growled, just in case it thought I was being friendly and got encouraged.
But I really can't tolerate this being followed business when I'm hunting in the garden. It makes too much noise and the rats hear it coming a mile away so I have no hope at all of catching them. It's like having an extremely annoying small black and white shadow.
Mum took me out for a walk this morning. Just me and her. I sighed with relief at leaving it behind. She explained what was going on. Apparently I haven't been replaced and there is enough love to go around two dogs in the family. Poppy (that's its name) has apparently had to leave her mum and all her brothers and sisters because she has got too big to stay with them.
I vaguely remember something similar happening to me when I was small, and how glad I was when mum and granny came to the rescue centre and took me home with them. I suppose I could be a bit more friendly towards it, now I know that it needed a new home and had to leave all its family behind to come here.
I told mum if it was staying with us I had four rules that were non-negotiable: 1) It doesn't eat my food. 2) It doesn't go in my bed. 3) It doesn't sit in front of my fire. 4) It doesn't get cuddled before me. She said that was fine.
I suppose I could try calling it Poppy and maybe it wouldn't be so bad if I taught her how to be in the garden for hunting purposes (as long as she listens and does exactly what I say of course). It might even be Quite Useful to have an extra pair of paws and set of teeth when out ratting.
Mum says Poppy is a Jack Russell, which is a type of terrier a little bit like myself (although not as good as me of course). She said she knew a funny story once about a boy who went into a bar when he was 18 and ordered his first ever drink with his mates, but instead of asking for a Jack Daniels he asked for a Jack Russell. I laughed politely but I have no idea why that should be funny.
Tuesday Nov 19th 2013
Poor Poppy had to go to the vets today for her jab. When she got back she told me there were lots of ENORMOUS dogs there as well as one that was pretending to be me, but she knew it wasn't me because it had a PINK heart-shaped dog collar on and it was VERY tidy and neat- can you imagine me ever wearing something like that, or come to think of it, being clean? (unless it's just after I've had a bath of course). Anyway, she said she growled at it and at all the others (although not at the cats, because she is scared of them after Cleo spat at her). I was Quite Impressed because she is VERY tiny wee. She also said Dougal's puppy Dylan came in after about half an hour and sniffed her so she growled at him too! This made me smile because I think I am the only person (apart from mum, dad, L and Cleo) that she doesn't growl at, and surprisingly, that thought is Quite A Nice One.
Auntie Katie came over to meet Poppy this morning. I didn't mind because she gave me the first GIANT cuddle and also she always brings Oscar with her and that means WALKIES! Oscar and I had a good run round the woods and I told him all about Poppy and guess what? He's getting his own Small Furry Thing called Lucie on Friday. I told him my cousin Dougal also got one last week. We decided it must just be something that happens to dogs automatically when they reach 4 or 5 years old.
When we got back from the walk Poppy was asleep in her crate (on a new cushion mum has bought her so I have my own one back, thank goodness). She wagged her tail when she saw me and we sniffed noses. Mum then put my fire on because I'd got wet legs from the wood and needed to dry off.
She also found my pig for me. Poppy has a cow that she let me play with so last night I suggested she chewed on the pig. It's Quite Nice sharing (but only for a small bit of time).
I sat there for a while enjoying the heat, and then, d'you know what? The strangest thing happened. I found myself wondering where Poppy was, and whether she might like a bit of warmth too, because it is cold outside today and she is Very Small and Close To The Ground, and she has been to the vets for an injection and had to go there in the car, which she doesn't like very much because it made her sick on Saturday. So.....
I let her sit at the very back bit of the sheet (until I got fed up with her wriggling and Bouncing About so I growled at her to Go Away).
Don't tell anyone, but she's not that bad really. I think I could even get used to her......