Since losing my wonderful greyhound, gentle giant ‘Bozzy’, in April 2016, I have so missed having a four legged companion. The sheep are absolutely great, but it’s not the same! See post about Bozzy here
Meet Oscar – our little man, who joined us on the last day of August, just 2 happy weeks ago.
Now 11.5 weeks old, his world is gently opening up, & discovering it all is pretty amazing, bemusing, exciting, sometimes scary, & regularly exhausting. Lots of little naps are needed to recharge those tiny batteries!
As with any new pup, establishing a toilet routine was one of our first priorities. As you see from the above photo, we spent quite a bit of time outside at recommended times… Oscar initially didn’t seem to realise what the aim of the exercise was, but he did wait patiently for whatever we were waiting for..!
Learning to be a ‘cool cookie’!
Oscar met the chickens straight away, and seems wonderfully calm and unfazed around them… as they now are themselves, when he potters about as I attend to their daily care.
We’re walking alongside the sheep field, a bit closer each time, to get Oscar, (& the sheep themselves), used to the idea that each is of no bother or particular interest to the other. He is delighted whenever he finds a bit of wool around the grounds, and sometimes likes to gaze at them… but I’m not letting that go on for too long just yet!
‘Helping’ around the grounds
The huge hope is that Oscar learns to enjoy pottering safely around the grounds. I spend a lot of time outside, looking after the flora and fauna(!), & he will hopefully quietly relish the outdoor life too…
In time – but we haven’t got there yet; he went out for his first ‘walk’ off our grounds today, it being a week after his 2nd vaccination. He got soaked by long damp grass, overshadowing him like a tall forest. After an initially enthusiastic effort, he came to a shivering halt, pressing against my legs, & had to be carried for the remaining 4 miles… early days!
But he’s been great at chopping kindling… into tiny chewed bits of mulch!
If I keep chewing on twigs, can we not start that teeth cleaning with the brush that you mentioned?!
He is also very helpfully learning to tidy the wood edging of the drive, good at regularly monitoring the level of water in the watering can and does his best with collecting the grass clippings… although lying in them is a bit tempting! Life is so distracting when you’re a puppy!
Oscar’s been building up his confidence with the garden steps… a bit scary for someone as short as him, but after a few tumbles, he’s darting up and down now. He’s also a good help with harvesting – a bit of quality control, but so far not taking or chewing the picked veg, so our supper has been safe!
Learning about ‘home’
Inside, there have been lots of new things to discover and get used to – like the hoover, and very loud kitchen mixer – he found a safe place to hide behind my shoes when that went on to whisk muffin batter!
And he’s developing a taste for cabbage stalks: what every pup wants for teething!
Edith Wharton“My little dog – a heartbeat at my feet”
What’s in a name?
The name Oscar apparently means ‘spear of the gods’, which sounds somewhat dubious for someone living here, surrounded by animals.
But it also means ‘friend’, ‘loving one’, and ‘deer friend’. All exactly what we hope for – particularly given the fact that some of our most regular visitors are the beautiful wild deer 🙂
The Greyhound Trust
The Greyhound Trust is a fantastic charity, lovingly carrying out a much needed role in rehoming ex racing or non starter greyhounds. Sometimes misunderstood, I’ve always thought of the breed as being very small – despite their size, they are in terms of being quiet, relaxed and calm. They’re used to be housed in a kennel most of the time: so are pretty lazy and haven’t learnt to be the ‘life and soul’ of the family, at the centre of everything, so tend to be placid & gentle.
See details here.
However, this is a challenging place for a greyhound to live, with chickens, sheep, feral cat, wild rabbits & deer. We couldn’t find another ‘Bozzy’, who was totally chilled around all of those friends – and the fox, & hamster who kept escaping to the same corner of the kitchen inside. So we found Oscar, a Whippet / Bedlington cross, instead.