Thursday 16th July: Report from Lamma

The Lorry Pups are doing very well in their new, spacious accommodation and are, of course, growing like weeds.  The ex-bedroom pups, now free range, have slotted in with the others and the routine with ease.  They know they get fed separately outside in the puppy enclosure and wait there at the appropriate time.  At night they also choose to sleep together outside rather than enter the Dragon’s Den  (though the door is open for them).  Sleeping dogs don’t like to be disturbed by restless youngsters, and woe betide any puppy that inadvertently stumbles on one of the adults while they’re snoozing.  I frequently hear howls of anguish from one of the doglets who has made that mistake, and fluffy black girl, Fiji, should audition for a horror movie so convincing are her screams.

 It’s taken me a long time to be able to recognise all of the black doglets, and I can still only tell who’s who if they are together.  I can remember each of them as young puppies, and still see them in my mind as they were when they were at AFCD kennels, but as they grew they seemed to blend into a mass of almost identical black dogs.  Now they are older, it’s more their personalities that distinguish one from the other.  Luther is growing into a very large boy and I can see him rivaling Big Sooty before too long.  His sister, Lula, is much smaller and is the only black doglet with floppy ears, so those two are easy. Both are still quite timid and Lula is impossible to get in at night. Fiji (fluffy), and Cairo (with a skin problem) are sisters, and they have turned into sweet girls, although Cairo spends a lot of time on her own, maybe because of her skin.  Taco, a boy, and Cajun, a girl, are virtually indistinguishable, and while they tolerate me and allow me to stroke them and carry them inside at night, they’re not what I would call affectionate dogs. 

 These black doglets grew up together (with a few tan siblings), and now, other than very sweet Fiji, I can’t see that they really have a chance of being adopted. It seems that at the time I got these puppies from AFCD  there must have been a big intake of  wild-born litters, although Taco, Cajun and their tan-coloured sister, Malta, were all wearing harnesses when they arrived as babies.  Strangely Malta has grown into a very affectionate girl, although all were shy youngsters.

 Like Chippy and her siblings, she is really the only one who is at all tame.  Her ‘Brunch Club’ brothers and sisters (Bun, Mayo, Hamburg, Beanie and Bagel) couldn’t care less about me, and I’m really only a food source and someone to follow at walk times.

 Since taking on these now-doglets, I made a decision to only consider the very friendly, waggy-tailed, happy pups that came to AFCD, so none of the subsequent litters or singletons have the antisocial problems of this current bunch of lunatics.  Of course, to me they are all just what they are, individuals with their own hang-ups and characteristics, but they’re nothing like the younger pups who love everyone and everything, and who would very happily fit into family life.

 Today was a comparatively uneventful day at the kennels, with only some movement on the fostering front.  Later in the day I went to an AFCD presentation on the proposed changes to the Animal Trading License laws, which developed into a very heated exchange of words between the various factions: government, breeders, pet shops and animal welfare group representatives.  Ironically, the breeders and some of the animal welfare groups joined together to protest against the hobby breeder loophole, a clause that would allow home breeders to continue to breed and sell puppies without the need for a license or registration.  The meeting closed, as usual, without resolution, but there could be some interesting and unexpected alliances made while this debate rumbles on.

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