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Thursday, January 24 2013

Fae the Fat Fairy meets Miska the German Shepherd Dog - Episode 10

Quite a while ago now Miska the German Shepherd came into Fae's life. It was a bit like this, Fae had made friends with Rose. Rose is a Computer Guru who Fae's person has to have help her with her Website and her blogging and her newsletter about Dog Training.

Rose and Fae got on really well which was just as well because when Fae does her own blogging, not having fingers means that she needs Rose just to guess what the words typed really are and sort it out. Anyway Rose and Fae got to talking and Fae learnt all about Rose's special Dog Friend Buddy, and the adventures Rose and Buddy had together. Only thing is every time Fae went 'Tell me about Buddy Aunty Rose' - then Aunty Rose got really sad because her best friend dog Buddy had died in her arms when he got a huge twisted bowel problem in the middle of the night. The Vet could not fix it and Buddy had to be put to sleep. Life had not been the same for Rose after that because she lived alone and Buddy, a fifty kg German Shepherd, had been her very best friend.

One day Fae said to Rose, 'Aunty Rose, why don't you get another Buddy'? 'Thats what my person did when Pai died, she got me and she is happy again now'.

'Yes' said Rose 'You are right, but I might find it hard to be able to relate to another German Shepherd, there will never be anyone like Buddy'.

Anyway between the two of them they checked the Rescue Shepherds websites and sometimes nice looking dogs would show up looking for a home. There was a nice Black one and a nice white one but somehow Rose couldn't get motivated about them. Then there was one that had been rehomed a lot, she looked like a nice dog, pretty head. When Rose rang about her she was in Hawkes Bay in the care of an Animal Shelter and apparently her best owner had died and she had found it hard to re-home and had kept running away from her re-homes. Rose still wasn't sure, but the Shelter people agreed to bring Miska to Taupo so that Rose could go there and have a look at her. Well of course when you see a big beautiful dog looking completely confused and unloved and knowing she was probably grieving for her past life then Rose could not walk away. So Rose brought Miska home.

Miska was very confused for quite a long time, but Fae really loved her. Fae rolled on her back in front of Miska and was always trying to cheer her up. Miska didn't say much, she kept looking behind her and around and she didn't know anything about where she was. She knew she had come here in a green car though and that green car was her link to her past, so she was going to stick to the green car and get in it as much as she could.

Rose and Fae worked very hard on Miska and bit by bit she stopped looking behind herself and started to relate to her new life with her big soft bed in the bedroom at Rose's house and the warm fire all through the winter and the walks to the Park and the Lake and of course going to Dog Training.

Fae could see Miska and Rose coming for miles at the Dog Park and she would turn herself inside out to get there and greet them first. Miska was very patient with baby Fae, especially as she had enough issues of her own without having this Border Terrier thing throwing herself all over her.

'Come on Miska' said Fae ' We are doing tunnels at the park today, whoopee its such great fun'. Miska would look at the tunnel and as long as she had to go through it because she couldn't get away, she would do it, but as she came out the end of the tunnel she would put on a spurt and run to the Dog Training Gate to get close to her green car. Miska came to German Shepherd class with all the other Shepherds, but she didn't really want to be part of class or make friends with the dogs. She pulled on her lead to get away and head for the green car. Rose had to make sure she couldn't run away because that seemed to be what she wanted to do.

Bit by bit through many months Miska really started to show her true self. A loving protective friend dog who doesn't like a lot of fuss and nonsense.

One day Fae was sitting with Miska at the Dog Club and they were having a heart to heart. Well Fae was telling Miska her life history and how she wanted to be a Fairy and she was trying so hard to be good because the Fairy God Dog had said...... 'The What' said Miska, 'The Fairy God Dog' said Fae. 'Good Grief pup do you believe in Santa Claus and the Tooth Fairy too',' yes said Fae 'I do'. 'no such thing' 'is' 'not' 'IS' 'NOT. So then they didn't speak for a little while. Miska looked at the pup after a while and thought maybe she had been a bit hard on her, afterall when she was a pup she probably believed the world was full of Fairies as well, who knows she couldn't remember. So Miska smiled at Fae and asked 'So you have seen this God Dog have you'. 'Oh yes' said Fae. 'There is a puff of purple smoke and sequins and then there is the Fairy God Dog all dressed in purple and gold with a wand and a star on the top'. Miska was starting to enjoy this now 'Any tatts or piecings visible', she asked. Fae looked at her not understanding the joke and Miska was rolling around on the ground laughing and laughing.

'Come on I'll show you' said Fae getting up and heading for the Dog Training Ground Gate. Miska followed on a little puzzled. They waited at the gate and then when a lady came in with two jumping up barking german spitz dogs called Coco and Zulu , there was so much confusion that they were able to slip out the gate unnoticed. 'Keep walking' said Fae and Miska followed dutifully on. They came to a little group of trees and bushes near the road and Fae went in under the bushes. ' Miska followed. 'Sit here'. said Fae and Miska sat. 'Fairy God Dog' called Fae softly, 'I need you'. nothing . 'Please come Fairy God Dog, my friend Miska really needs you too'. nothing. By now Miska was wondering how she was going to get herself out of this corner and she was sure she shouldn't be in the bushes and that Rose would be looking for her soon and she would get into trouble. Also by now Fae was getting a little tearful -'please please come... and then there it was a cloud of purple sequins, the bone star wand came first and then a big tall dog with lots of golden hair and wearing purple tights. Miska's heckles rose on her back she was about to bark and attack but the FGD touched Miska's lips with the bone star wand and she felt calm and didn't want to bark any more. 'Now Fae' said the FGD 'You know how busy I am, what is this all about'. 'Well' said Fae 'This is my friend Miska and she is very sad and unhappy and I want her to be happy again'. The FGD turned to Miska and spoke very quietly to her in GSDspeak which Fae didn't understand, then the FGD said mmmmm after Miska spoke back to her. Then the FGD spoke in ordinary Dog and said. 'Yes I understand Miska that you have terrible nightmares about your past and you are very frightened. I can grant you the wish that your past will disappear completely from your mind, but first you have to do two good deeds. I know you are a strong helpful dog really so you will have to find some jobs to do that help others. I am sure you can do it and when you do then your past will be gone from your mind and body.' Just then POOF the FGD was gone in that puff of purple sequins.

Right at that moment Rose and Fae's person stuck their heads into the bushes. 'What are you two up to' asked Rose. 'How did you get out the gate is what I want to know' said Fae's person. Fae looked smug, Miska looked bewildered and they followed their people back in through the gate to do their Training class with the other dogs. 'See you later Miska' said Fae all smiley.....'Yeh' said Miska still in a dream wondering what on earth had happened just then.....................

Saturday, December 1 2012

Diary of the last two weeks

Oh dear the last two weeks have been a blur. First my computer has been down quite a bit doing funny things and not able to get to anywhere. Don't know if someone sent me something funny that caused it but anyway I disconnected everything and when I reconnected it is just fine. Whew.

The 16th of November was the first anniversary of the death of Piper my Pai. She was just twelve months old having been born on 1-11-10 and died on 16-11-11. She was run over by a truck on the road. Pai was the beginning of my wanting to help people train dogs. She had been at the SPCA rescue for a while. When she was taken in to the SPCA as a rescue from an appalling home, she became very sick and the people at the SPCA couldn't figure it out so they took her to a very expensive vet and he put her on a drip and told them she had meningitis. She had a long and slow recovery and there was something wrong with her brain. She had trouble making out what was happening around her and panicked quite a lot. I looked at her in the cage with three other puppies all bundles of fun and mischief, climbing over her and clambering to get out of the cage. She on the other hand huddled in a corner wetting herself and hoping the person coming into the cage wasn't someone coming to hurt her again. I couldn't bear it. I took her home as a foster from the SPCA initially. She was six months old, German Shepherd Kelpie. Not a mix I would normally find attractive, but she loved me and I loved her. Her eyes were just beautiful and she would lie in my arms and stare at me while I cuddled her.

However when things went wrong she ran under the hedge and at one point was there for three days. She had some sort of seizures and she did not like people one bit. She was terrified of everyone. My dogs loved her though. Chan the Sharpei cross in particular really adored her and he missed her badly when she died.

It was an odd and pathetic relationship with a dog who was unable to operate in any way normally. She was scared to piddle and poo and would store it until she could store it no longer and then it would come out in a stream of both from which she would run away and hide again under the hedge. My carpet has never been the same and I look fondly at the stains and go 'Oh Pai'.

While I had Pai a little Terrier that I liked belonging to Amy Knopers became pregnant. I jokingly said '"It is just as well I have Pai as I would like one of her pups" this was especially as the sire was a Border Terrier and I have always had a fondness for that breed, tough though they are. "Sorry Raewyn" Gus Knopers said "they are all spoken for" . I knew that Amy wanted one of the pups as her special dog, the others were to go and be trained as Kiwi Trackers and Rodent control for people working in Native Bird Recovery Programs around NZ. Well bless her heart, Spirit the Mother Dog had five baby girls. One more than they had homes for.

They were born on 1-11-11. Isn't that a magical date, and by the time I heard about the Pups, Pai had been run over. Weird I thought. Gus told me to get over and have a look at the pups, so I did and I chose a little flat coated pup, some of them had real wire coats. Her mother was Spirit so I wanted to call her Fairy Fae, or just Fae. She stood out to me in the brood box at three weeks as a really gorgeous little pup. Faerie being the Gaelic spelling of Fairy, and Border Terriers coming from the Scots border, I thought it was appropriate. On Christmas Eve last year Gus and Heddy and Amy and Kirsten delivered my perfect little terrier to me at home. It was my best Christmas ever, following as it did on the heels of the death of my precious baby Pai. For the past 20 years I have had rescue pups as my pets and workers and as Agility and Flygility dogs. All of them had been past their baby stages by the time I got them, and here was a real 7 and a half week old baby.

To me the whole episode was magical. Pai would never have been able to live a normal life, so I think she left me to give me Fae who is a delightful intelligent and wonderful little dog who lives on the paddocks and in the chicken and duck runs killing rats as fast as she can. Unfortunately she really likes chicken food, pellets, corn, bread, cafe leftovers, you name it she likes it. She actually takes bread out of the ducks beaks without hurting them. So she became Fae the Fat Fairy and she is still rather plump at twelve months old, a complete character and coming along beautifully with Agility and Flygility, loves all dogs, loves all people and works her little socks off with a smile on her face.

So over this last month I have reflected on my loss of Pai and stood on the roadside with the tears rolling down my face, and cuddled my twelve month old Fae, keeping her on a leash at all times after the fright I got twelve months ago. We have celebrated the first birthday of Fae and I write the blog Fae the Fat Fairy which entertains me and a lot of other people too. All the characters in the blog are real animals that we live with or know.

The Knoper family sent Fae a Birthday card and Fae sees her sister Bree almost every week at Agility Training. The dog thing has kind of taken over my life so I am going to lie back and be guided from above on it. I called my new business, Good Dog Training Te Kuri Pai. Kuri being Maori for Dog and Pai being Maori for Good. I have been blessed this last twelve months with a whole new regime of dog training as my job in life, behavior training rather than just training people to do Flygility or Agility. My guiding spirit Pai is there with me all the way making sure I understand the pain and difficulty that dogs have trying to live in a world filled with human beings and their daft lifestyles.

I think I am back on track now, I took my dogs to Eastern Bay of Plenty Agility Ribbon Trial last Sunday and Becki-boo who has not competed for five years and is seven years old now, came second in Starters small dogs. Last time she came 7th but that was overall without splits for the heights. Fae is too young to compete yet and it will be hysterical when she does as her legs are short and sort of shoot out sideways as she goes, but she is fast as and a happy little thing. So I am going to Cambridge Ribbon trial next week to see if I can actually beat the Schnauzer that beat Boo by 100th of a second - Yes. Not that I am competitive or anything,,,,,,