Well.  Actually, he broke himself.

Poor Ranger. Sometime between Friday evening and Saturday morning, he ran full tilt into something. We don’t know what, but this dog is always running full tilt somewhere, and I guess he just isn’t used to quite where everything is in this house.¬† Our best guess is that he hit the wooden feeding station with his right hind foot, because it’s quite solid, and it was knocked out of place around that time, too.¬† And it’s the outer metatarsal that he’s broken.¬† In two places.

Yep.¬† He chipped a triangular shaped piece right out of it, and there’s another rhomboid shaped piece next to it.¬† See?

I noticed him holding that foot up every now and then on Saturday morning, and then it began to swell.¬† Naturally, we weren’t in time to go to the vet’s Saturday surgery, and it clearly wasn’t an emergency, since he was using the foot … so over the weekend I had fun icing the foot of a dog who doesn’t like his feet touched at the best of times, but he was very brave and allowed me to do it a few times.¬† While I was holding that ice pack in place, I took the opportunity to distract his attention by working on getting him used to me touching his mouth – you’ll remember perhaps that he hates his mouth touched?¬† Well, eventually, on Sunday afternoon, I found out why he’s so against it.¬† I got a quick glimpse of the gum above his (missing) left upper canine, and there it was: a huge, deep, angry-looking ulcer with what looked suspiciously like a fistula at the bottom of it.

So, on Monday morning, off he went to the vet, where I left him for x-rays and a good look in his mouth.

You can see what the x-ray of his foot showed.¬† The break is two thirds the way along the long bone at the bottom in the picture.¬† Impressive, for a dog who didn’t yell about it, huh?¬† But that’s the funny thing about greyhounds:¬† if they step on a twig funny, they scream blue murder, but break a bone and they can be silently stoical.

And his mouth?¬† They took another x-ray to make sure there was no root left behind after his dental two months ago (there wasn’t), cleaned the fistula and gave us some heavy duty antibiotics plus mouthwash* and altogether (including painkillers for the foot) that was ¬£370 walking out of our account without even waving goodbye.

Way to go Ranger – you’ve hardly been here five minutes!

Bless him, he’s been behaving very well.¬† No chewing of the bandage, and while he’s very frustrated at the lack of walks, he’s taking it well.¬† He’s eating for England, too, now that his poor mouth is feeling better.

However.¬† We’ve gone through cheese balls, corned beef, and potted meat paste as a wrap for the tablets.¬† We’re onto Brussell’s pat√© now.

Now I know this dog will eat Parma ham, but … well, really!



* Yeah, yeah, I know.  Rinse and spit, Ranger!




Posted on July 10, 2011 in Life, the Universe and Everything, Oddities by Jay19 Comments »

I don’t know why I continue to be so kind to you lot, I really don’t. Is this easy, or what? Well. I think it is!

Talking about the entire thing, not just the part you see here:

This is an object of which we have far too many. Not everyone has them – in fact, many people have none at all, and those that do have them might only have one, but what can I say? I like to ring the changes and have a little bit of choice in these matters, so I have … let me see … well, at least half a dozen in regular use.

For us, it’s an essential object. Not everyone will need one, of course, but those of us that do rely quite heavily on them. Personally, I use one* at least once a day, usually twice, and sometimes more often that that. These things are functional, and many of mine are really quite beautiful, though they certainly don’t have to be, and in fact, those belonging to most people are not.

I think I might have confused you enough for this week, so let me just say that if you are completely stumped, you’ll find the answer here. As usual, I won’t answer any comments until tomorrow to avoid giving it away, and then I’ll add the names of the ‘winners’ at the bottom of this post.

So. Be honest – and have fun! And for more Macro Monday posts, pop on over to Lisa’s Chaos. She has lots!!


* Or two. It depends.

Woo hoo!! We have several winners this week – you clever lot! Hootin’ Annie gets the ‘winner’s crown’ for being first with her correct guess – well done Annie! Then we have Babs, Karen and Carolina, Lisa’s Chaos .. and Dimple who was so close she has to be included because it would be unfair not to!

I’m always happy when between a quarter and a half of all commenters get it right. It makes me feel you all had a sporting chance, but it isn’t so easy as to be a complete waste of time. See you all next week?¬† I hope so!

And as usual – thanks for playing! It’s fun, isn’t it?

Well, that got your attention, didn’t it? Tee hee.

But for those of you who came here looking for the sexy Cuban American guy from Janet Evanovich’s Stephanie Plum series, this post isn’t about him – and it’s not even him in the picture up there!¬† That’s just a random shot courtesy of one o the ‘free-to-use’ photo sites.

No. This Ranger is half Australian and half Irish … but there are similarities.¬† Just like the other Ranger, this one is good looking and very fit.¬† He’s fussy what he eats, he likes to run everywhere, and he does tend to wear black all the time.¬† However, I’m not sure what he’s done with his shades. Or his snazzy wheels, come to that. And if he ever pulls a gun I’m going to be really, really surprised.

Really surprised.

Because this Ranger is a handsome black greyhound. A Brambleberry greyhound.

He’s a little shorter than Sid, though not by much, and he has a distinguished grey muzzle.¬† Interestingly, his toes are all black, all round – with only the faintest of fringes of white hairs on them, which makes them look as if they’ve been frosted.¬† And no white tip on his tail, either, though he does have a little white ‘shirt-front’.¬† He’s been around the block a bit, poor old feller.¬†¬† He’s missing a large number of teeth, his eyes are a bit cloudy, and he has a funny little extra rib that sticks out at an odd angle, but he is nine years old, bless him.¬† For some reason, nobody ever wanted Ranger, after he was done with racing. For nearly all of his nine years, he lived in the kennels – but then he landed with us to be Companion Royal to the lovely Sid.

Sid seems pretty pleased with him, and Ranger seems pleased with Sid, too … but not as pleased as he is with OH.¬† When we went to meet him (without Sid for that first time) Ranger went straight for OH, bypassing me entirely, which was quite amusing, because that’s not how it usually¬† happens.¬† It was almost as if he knew that OH was the one he had to win over, but he seemed quite enchanted by the big ‘monkey’ with silver hair and little round glasses.¬† He actually play-bowed to him and barked, which his foster carer said was unheard of … so he came home with us, and he’s been following OH around from room to room, whining if he disappears upstairs and following his footsteps with his nose pointing to the ceiling, and greeting him with joy when he comes back down.

But wiill he fit in?¬† Well .. I did think so, but Ranger has a couple of problems.¬† You see, with my dodgy shoulders and generally health issues, I specified that I wanted an ‘easy’ dog this time.¬† One who didn’t have issues to iron out, and who we could walk off-lead (after the proper amount of training) without having palpitations. ¬† And Ranger does Not Like other breeds of dog.¬† As one of my Italian friends put it, he’s ‘un razzista’ – a racist!¬† Or in this case, perhaps it would be fairer to say ‘breedist’.¬† It makes walking him in public a tad worrysome and tedious, and because of him pulling and going on high alert when he sees another dog, Sid is not getting the slack that he needs and he’s getting more cramps in his back.

The other big problem is that he won’t let anyone look in his mouth (his trainer confirms that he’s always been like that), which makes taking care of his few remaining teeth problematic, and if he ever needs a pill, his wiggling and squirming is really going to hurt my shoulders.


Well, we’re working on his issues, and he’s a smashing dog in most respects. Affectionate, responsive to the ‘uh-uh’ command (as in ‘Uh-uh!¬† Get your nose off the kitchen counter/out of the toilet bowl/fridge etc, and don’t pee up my tomatoes’), he’s lively, and mostly very sweet.¬† But we’ve had to change his status to ‘foster’ pending a decision on his safety with small dogs.

And that’s another problem, you see.¬† Now we know he is not easy to handle around other breeds and may not be small dog safe, who’s going to want him?

No, no – don’t all shout at once.¬† I’m talking about the dog, not the guy up at the top there!


Posted on July 5, 2011 in Uncategorized by Jay10 Comments »

Let me start by saying I’m one of the laziest people on the planet.

OK, partly that’s due to various health problems, but I’ve never been particular athletic, preferring the couch potato life. I like to pursue my hobbies and interests from a horizontal, or at least 90% angle of repose. There’s an awful lot you can do from a sitting position, as I’m sure you all know – and if I didn’t have dogs I might never use my legs and they’d just wither away from disuse!

So. When one of my oldest friends – an old school friend, the same age as me, dammit – gets off her backside several years running, and actually runs*, I have the greatest respect for her. When she does it for charity, and for quite some distance, I have even more respect. And yes, my conscience twinges, just a little bit, because even though I’m not physically capable of running, I somehow feel that I should make the effort and at least walk … but I won’t, because I’m lazy, and I have a strong aversion to pain and discomfort!

How many of you old mature ladies and gentlemen out there feel like getting up and running a marathon? No? Hmm, I thought not. Join the club. My chosen forms of fund raising are done from a (you guessed it … ) sitting position: sometimes in a chair behind a folding table at a fete or boot sale, sometimes by taking part in an online charity auction and so on.

Occasionally, I fill a sack with unwanted items and take it to a charity shop – by car! Or if I’m feeling really energetic, I might join a street collection team, or a Meet & Greet for the hounds, where I might stand and walk gently around for a few paces, but that’s about the extent of the exercise involved, apart from carrying Sid’s bed and water bottle to the venue!

Or I take the really easy route and toss some coins in a bucket. I have a theory about that, by the way. If you’ve ever held a collecting tin, you’ll realise that 90% people just walk on by without giving you a glance. Now those people probably don’t have a lot of cash to spare, but I bet they wouldn’t miss 10p, which is about 16 US cents, I think, right now. Imagine … out of every 100 people who walk by, if that missing 90% gave 10p, that would be an extra ¬£9, and they’d hardly miss it! Nine pounds isn’t that much, of course, but I stood in Peterborough’s main shopping street recently with Sid and a collecting bucket for the Lincolnshire Greyhound Trust, and on a busy Saturday, easily a thousand people go by in an hour. The place is heaving! My maths is appalling, but surely that would add up to an extra … lemme see … ¬£90 an hour. I was there for three hours, so I would have collected ¬£270 more in my little bucket! I wonder how many hounds that would feed for a week? So, you see what I mean.

Anyway. Back to the main point of this post. Rita will be running* her little legs off this Sunday (the 10th) in the Manchester Race for Life, and so far she’s quite a way short of her target figure of ¬£200, which is an awful pity when you put in so much effort. If anyone fancies easing their conscience in the best possible way, they can find her page here, on Just Giving. And you can sponsor for as much or as little as you like, of course, so remember those collecting tins!**

* Or possibly walking at times … but she’ll still be moving! And upright!!

** Actually the minimum donation is ¬£2, but it’s not really a lot, is it?