Saturday, February 17

One Month with Brandy


Happy Saturday all, I hope this week has been a good'un. Alongside Valentine's Day and the attributed gumpf, we also marked another somewhat sentimental occasion this week-- one whole month since Sam and I collected our little demon child/puppy, Brandy. I thought with all good intentions it might good to fill you guys in-- for better or worse!






Firstly, it might be helpful if I explain why, after four and a half years of peaceful cohabitation, we decided to introduce a little fluff monster into our lives. Sam and I met at university-- thirty minutes from home for him and a reasonable amount of distance away for me. We decided to move in together after graduating and so I've been down his neck of the woods ever since. This has bought with it many peaks and troughs, one mainly being that it's now that bit trickier for me to nip down the road to my nan's for a tea and a strawberry scone. As time has gone on, our working hours have drifted further and further away from 'compatible' and we were finding that despite living together, we really weren't physically seeing each other all that much. We thought that it might be good for the both of us to have a bit of company for the times we were wallowing on our onesomes. We mulled it over a fair bit and decided that ultimately a pup seemed to be the way forward.

From that point, it just came down to picking a breed-- Sam wanted big and fluffy: Alsatians, German Shepherds, Collies and other rambunctious doggies of that ilk. I was erring more on the side of the novelty pup: Pekingese, Cavalier King Charles, Cavapoo... Dogs that I would quantify as 'silly looking' (and travel sized). I've grown up with various dogs around: a beloved Doberman, cuddly Cavalier, Collie cross and Springers with temperaments at various degrees of loopy. In the end, we met somewhere near the middle with Brandy: An English show-type Cocker (the show part being an essential distinction).


As I've said... I am no stranger to dogs. I've met and pet a fair few in my day and am fortunate to say that I've never had a bad experience with them. I think growing up with a dog that most people would balk at (good old Bruno) meant that that all other pups looked cute and cuddly by comparison. I've felt free to pet to my heart's content. That being said, by no means did that mean that I could in any way be equipped to take on a puppy and lead it through life on my todd. Sam and I are fortunate in the sense that although we picked up a pup to give us some company when we're on our own, we don't have to raise her on our own and can tag-team train her.

The first few nights were pretty rough. Sam was under the weather and Brandy was up all night long. The first night she woke up every two hours, which we found annoying but not intolerable. The night after, it was every forty-five minutes, with about another half hour required to calm her down and get her back to sleep. She cried and cried and cried, and when she wasn't crying she was going to the toilet places she shouldn't have. We thought we had concocted an ingenious plan: we had borrowed an old rug that successfully covered the entire carpet of our living room. We planned to sacrifice it to the puppy-training gods with the idea being that when she was fully trained (whenever that would be) we could chuck it out with the carpet underneath fully intact. Unfortunately, the rug had come from my aunt, who is the cheerful owner of the aforementioned Collie-cross. Evidently, Brandy didn't like the smell of old Bert and so decided the entire rug, and furthermore every surface in the immediate vicinity of it, was her personal toilet. Potty training was a no-go for a good few days while we tried to figure out where we were going so wrong. The rug went out, training pads came in with force, and the wheels were back in motion. One of many faux-paws ('scuse pun) we've encountered on our journey so far.

Since then, things have been up and down as you would expect. Her 'accidents' are much more rare, although she hasn't fully grasped the concept of 'outside'. She knows how to sit, and come, but that's about it. She likes to cuddle and bite and destroy the loofah-- she doesn't like cars, other dogs (yet), or waiting for you to come out the shower. But she's a good egg all in all (we think). As I've been writing this she's been sat nicely on her bed having a snooze. Whether or not she did anything on the carpet while I went to put the kettle on is another matter. I'll cross that bridge when I get to it.

Speak soon!
Steph

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