As many of you know we have 2 dogs, Dodger and Lexie. We love our dogs very much, we are what you would call ‘Dog People’ (in spite of having 7 cats in residence as well, who we love just as much!). Apart from that lot we also have 4 chickens, 2 Giant African Land Snails, 1 Hamster, 1 Bearded Lizard and 6 fish (inside and out), you could say we have quite a collection of various inhabitants apart from the 9 human beings who also reside here.
They look as though butter wouldn’t melt in their mouths but, convicted felons, both of them!
Remarkably, everything normally runs fairly smoothly. The chickens, fish, snails, Bearded Dragon and hamster are easy as long as they receive regular doses of food and water, the cats take care of themselves as cats do and the dogs haven’t presented us with any problems either. That is until Dodger found a way to escape from the garden.
Lexie is a big dog, she scales the fence with ridiculous ease but never wanders far enough to cause concern. Put the pair of them together with an infinite wild space of fields and woodland to explore though, and it’s an entirely different matter!
They already represent an unlikely pairing with Lexie being a huge black dog of indeterminate origins, apart from knowing that she was rescued in Romania, but genetically she could be anything! Dodger, on the other hand, is a tiny, sandy coloured, scruffy little dog and is seven eighths Chihuahua and an eighth Jack Russell. Something tells me, however, that the Jack Russell was genetically the stronger at the moment of conception!
With Dodger in tow they managed to find places I’d never even heard of via the local Dog Warden, the Police and numerous calls from various households within a 2 mile radius. They were breaking into ‘dog proof’ gardens with Macgyver style ease, chasing innocent dog walkers down the Greenway and careering down the lane. Now, whilst Lexie does have a fair amount of intelligence, Dodger doesn’t own enough brain cells for any to ever have the capacity to collide in order to complete a focused thought pattern and was therefore seen licking car headlights after bringing all the traffic in the lane to a complete standstill! DOH!
This situation could obviously not continue and their regular forays into the unsuspecting outside world needed to be sharply curtailed. Enter the ever steadfast and willing, Todd and Jo. The ‘Fence Party’ was on Saturday and Todd duly arrived armed with his trusty tool kit although I suspect that he believed himself to be on a minor ‘patching’ expedition! I, however, had had other ideas and had bought enough fencing to be able to extend the upper reaches of the fence to, what I believed to be, Lexie proof proportions.
5 hours, lots of food, willing helpers and a few beers later the fence was done, albeit finished under torchlight (Todd doesn’t stop until the job is done). We stood back in an unsuccessful attempt at admiring his handiwork in the pitch dark and eventually felt that it was fine to let Lexie loose. She’s a very good dog and always does her ‘business’ on the other side of the fence in the field for which I am eternally grateful. She obviously felt the urge as we let her out and ran full pelt towards the newly raised fence and splatted against the new panel at the top and flopped to the ground in a heap. She bounded to her feet (obviously unhurt) and looked suspiciously at her usual escape route.
Maybe from her close up vantage point she could then see the fence in the dark and made no further attempt to get over until the next morning. In daylight she eyed the offending object disapprovingly and proceeded to half jump and half scramble over it. I stood watching, mortified that all the effort of the previous evening had been to no avail whilst muttering the word s**t under my breath as Dodger frantically dashed around, ever hopeful of finding an open gate. This hadn’t been my master plan!
Re-enter Todd and Jo on Monday evening, Todd once again armed with his tool box and Osborn on standby to assist. So far, it seems, so good, with the newly reinforced fence, although I’m not holding my breath, it seems that those two can extricate themselves from anything.
To my ever patient (distant) neighbours, thank you for your patience and to Todd and Jo, well, thank you for just being the amazing people you are!!