Friday, 12 April 2013

Lots of activity

I am chief shit-cleaner in this house and this week has been an exceptional one. Being nervous and in strange surroundings, the pup crapped about four times a day and sometimes he didn't make it outside into the garden. Still, because he's small, the piles were tiny and anyway, you just get on with it, don't you? Small he may be, but his determination is huge, as I've found already. The second night he was not prepared to stay in his newly-purchased basket in the kitchen, not by any means. His cries, yaps and howls were probably heard right around the cul de sac! I'm ashamed to say we gave in and brought him upstairs. Peace at last. He wants to be with us, preferably both together and runs from one to the other is we do separate things in the house.

Yesterday I went to Ogle Castle because the horses have arrived. The Magic Trust, which offers carriage driving for the disabled, runs from there. I got interested last autumn when I saw the horses pulling carriages around the Gibside estate, but they were just about to stop operations for the winter, and we were about to go off to Australia. With the coming of spring, operations are starting up again.

So yesterday I "met" the horses, Sparky and Bumper, groomed them and almost choked on the hair coming off them. They'll look much more streamlined when they've shed their winter coats. Then we were shown how to harness a horse to a carriage, and tried it ourselves - two other learner/volunteers beside myself. Complicated or what? Breastplate first, I remember that, and bridle last; but two other bits go on in between. Reins and whatever they call the "girth" that goes around his stomach and latches around his tail. It'll take me a while before I learn where all the bits go, and they have to be correctly fitted because when all is done, a wheelchair is clamped onto the bed of the carriage and the person in it drives the horse. There is an able-bodied driver beside them in case of need, and I stood on the footplate at the back to act as groom when we went out for a long walk with Sparky. Naturally I'm not in the photo, because I'm taking it as Sparky went by.

Must run, because Tim's appointment is looming! Will add pics later.
Later: Vet says Tim has a heart murmur and recommends an ultrasound scan to see what's what. H'mmmm.


Anita Davison said...

Poor Tiny Tim - maybe it's something he'll grow out of as he gets older. I do hope so.

Jen Black said...

I hope so. Of course, the breeder didn't mention it and said he'd been vet checked as healthy. I knew he was small, with one blue eye and his nose isn't all black - I knew that and didn't mind. I don't want a show dog, but a pet, a companion.

kerry said...

Hello Jen,

Just letting you know that I have enjoyed following your blog and have nominated you for the Liebster Blog Award. Find out more about the award by visiting the post on my blog where I have nominated you and linked back to your blog.

Ursula said...

Poor Timmy. They sometimes grow out of it, though.
I bet your horse experience was fun! Are those Gypsy Vanner horses? I recently read that until 1996 they were unknown in the US, until somebody imported some from England.
And you were brave wrestling with that harness. I can't even put a harness on a dog!

Jen Black said...

As long as he seems fit I won't worry about it.
The horse in the picture is a piebald. I don't think they have any other designation but that. There are loads of them around here.