Thursday, 2 February 2017

Another dog blog

'Never trust a dog with orange eyebrows'
Terry Pratchett

We have posted some pictures of the new dog on our Facebook page but it is about time we introduced him properly. The discussion about getting another dog has been going on for some time now. It was always a case of when rather than if. This is our third dog, our second sea dog and our first puppy. The deckhands are besotted. We're quite fond of him too - handsome fella isn't he?

Like the others this is a dog which had another family before coming to us but needed a new home. Unlike the others, this is a young puppy. Rehoming a dog limits the choices of breed available compared to going direct to a breeder. We had a good idea of the sort of dog we knew would fit our life style best before we started looking properly. It couldn't be too big, not too sheddy (long dog hairs everywhere is never good), not too highly strung. It also needed to enjoy long walks, rock scrambling and being outdoors. It seemed that another retriever or a herding dog would be ideal.

Kelpies are an Australian herding dog. Bred originally from Scottish border collies for their intelligence and resilience. They are fast and independent, often working a long distance from view. The name also means water sprite which seems quite appropriate for a sea dog. Once we saw his advert it was obvious that this was our new dog.

Guarding the door mat and teething

He has now grown into the lifejacket we had for Susie and is more than happy to wear it. He is getting used to wandering around the deck but as the weather has been cold and wet, we are not spending much time out there at the moment. Space is always a problem on a boat but having had a dog before it was just a case of readjusting. Being a similar size, his bed fits nicely under the chart table where the old one was kept.

He is a quick learner as you would expect from an intelligent breed. He does not mind the rocking motion and has not been at all bothered by the storms passing through this week. He's learnt to get on and off the boat on command and has only fallen in once. He likes to help the Skipper working on the boat too. Several screwdrivers and other tools have got teeth marks now. He will be starting training classes soon for general obedience and hopefully moving on to agility. 

Walking in the local woods

By law all dogs in the UK have to be microchipped and wear a collar with identity disc in public areas. We had to decided how best to meet this requirement allowing for easy contact should he become separated from us. We had his disc engraved with the boats name and SSRI (registration number) in addition to our mobile number and the post code of this marina.

I'm sure we'll be sharing more tales of the dog in the future.

Sea dog

I wrote a blog previously about living with a dog on board which you can find here.

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