Where?  There on the stair patio!

Bold as brass, this little fellow came out to ‘tidy up’ after the collared doves had kicked a lot of grain off the feeding station, despite the fact that OH was sitting watching him with the conservatory door wide open, only about two yards away.  I guess he was hungry!

Basically, this is the reason we stopped feeding the dogs outside; we are right on the edge of the village next to a field where grain crops are regularly planted and there are always mice and rats nearby.  One day, I caught a glimpse through the window of a cheeky little mouse sitting in one of the dogs’ bowls, finishing up the last scraps of their dinner.  Since more than 50% of rodents in the UK carry leptospirosis (a bacterial disease which attacks the liver and causes jaundice), I didn’t think this was a good idea.

So we stopped feeding the dogs outside, and for a while, we stopped feeding the birds, too.

But as you see, they’re still around.

They’re fascinating little creatures.  One of our sons used to keep them as pets and of course, it soon became my job to clean them out and feed them – and on one memorable occasion soon after we bought them, to treat them for mange.  Imagine having to dip two wriggling, squirming little mice in a bath of insecticidal solution every few day?  They are really, really good at hanging by their tails and contorting themselves so that no part of their little bodies enters the water!

And my, aren’t they fast?

Don’t you just love the way this one is turning on the spot so fast that only his little pink foot is in any kind of focus?  Sweet!

I don’t mind them too much, because a) you can’t keep them out of the garden anyway and b) our dogs are always vaccinated against lepto.

Just as long as they don’t come in the house.

Because if they do, I still have the set of humane mouse traps left over from the days before we had all the ground level floors concreted and all the odd holes around pipes mended.

Ooops!  Looks like he may have heard me!

So tell me; how do YOU feel about mice?

Last week’s Macro Monday puzzle proved to be so easy that … well, I thought I’d let you ride the wave for a while, as it were.  So here’s another one you shouldn’t find completely impossible – I hesitate to suggest that you might all find it a doddle because when I’ve done that before, I’ve been completely wrong.  Hopefully though, some of you will find it difficult, because it’s no good if it’s too easy is it?  Dunno about you, but I do like a challenge!

So, what is that thing up there?  Well, I’ve seen these in every country I’ve been to, in some form or another.  People all over the world use them, and once you know what they are, I suppose that would seem to be obvious – but still, in some places the use of these is considered extremely rude.

So hard, isn’t it?  International travel, with all the little quirks and social mores of each country to remember?

Anyway.  These things are usually disposable, but I’ve seen several types which are not; some very pretty ones, made of silver with their own tiny carrying case, too.  Tempting it is, but no, I don’t have one of those.  And, you know, in days gone by, nothing was disposable, including these.

Expensive?  No, not unless you go for the sterling silver or 18 carat gold variety.  Easily available?  I’m afraid not, not here in the UK, not anymore.  They definitely are available, if you know where to look, but it seems they’re falling out of fashion or something.

Now, that’s all I can tell you without giving too much away, so off you all go and jot down your guesses in the comments, and I’ll be back tomorrow evening (UK time) to add the answer in the form of the picture link you’ve all come to know and love.

Have fun!

Yoo hoo!  I’m back!!

And it looks like nearly three-quarters of you got this one right!  Yay!  The statistics are improving!  I’m kind of glad a number of you didn’t get it, because as I’ve always said, I do like to challenge you, and it’s no fun if it’s too easy, is it?  Where would the sense of achievement be?

So this week, I’m congratulating One as the first person to correctly guess the answer – well done, One!  And the rest of the ‘winners’ are: Jama, Greyhounds CAN Sit, Herman Turnip, Jientje, Patty, Lauri, Babs, Carol, Angel, Ruth West, Sistertex, Jenny the Pirate, Kala, and Shooting Parrots.

And yes, Kala, you did finally get one right!  Congratulations!  I hope you – and everyone else – will be back next week for another go!

UPDATE:  Apologies!  I forgot to add the link.   Go and see the answer here!




Posted on August 26, 2011 in Life, the Universe and Everything, Oddities by Jay13 Comments »

Well, alright, just the thought of putting tiny little slipper socks on a dog is enough to make the average cat laugh, isn’t it?  But there are those of us who actually need to do this if their dog isn’t to fall flat on his face with horrible regularity.  Sid, as most of you know, has only three legs and can’t do slippery floors without grippy bootees on his smacking great macho paws.

Anyway – the really funny part about that pack of dog slippers up there is this:


I don’t know about you, but it would never have occurred to me to use a tiny wee knitted bootee as a restraint, but if I ever should attempt it, it might be a difficult.  The average greyhound has a little more than the width of two fingers between his neck and his ankles.

And .. well, it’s a horrible thought, but I’ll leave the possible size of the fingers to your fertile imaginations.

Yes, my contribution for ABC Wednesday this week is on the familiar subject of feet!

These particular four feet belonged to my very first greyhound, James.  He wasn’t actually a very furry greyhound, though his feet don’t look too bad in this foto photo.  You see, when we found him at a Wood Green Animal Shelter, he was, quite literally, mangy, and had lost most of the fur from the lower half of his body – which was pink and raw in places.  Despite the fact that he wasn’t a particularly beautiful dog, he was a fine hound; friendly and eager and for some reason, we found him rather fetching despite his scars, his mange, and his broken teeth and all.  And he flourished with us, and became the most delightful, funny, intelligent, handsome hound as time went by and he grew most of his fur coat back.

Of course, not all of my dogs have even had four feet.   Sid, our fifth greyhound, lost a back leg in an accident at the first bend of the racetrack one day, but fear not – his owner paid all the medical fees, and they actually had him on the operating table at the vet’s to fix the leg when they found that it was far too damaged and had to amputate instead.  His trainer nursed him back to health, and saw him through those first frightening days when he had to learn to manage with one fewer legs, and he was living with her in her house when he frolicked out to meet me one fine day and I lost my heart.

That’s Ranger behind him, of course, wearing the ‘Orange Flames’ collar that used to belong to Jack.  You can’t see his broken foot in that picture, but … what is that thing on his face?  Well, that’s his muzzle, and he’s wearing it because we were at a dog show and you know what people can be like.  They sometimes forget that not all dogs are friendly, and they let their dogs run right up without forethought, don’t they?  We hadn’t had Ranger long, and while he’s not ferocious, we knew he wasn’t keen on other breeds, so we were playing safe.

Here’s someone else’s feet!  And look – they’re right in Sid’s face!  Not that he seems to find that a problem, bless him.  Neither of my dogs like loose dogs flying up to them, but they don’t fret about humans.  In fact, humans can come as close as they like, funnily enough!  They don’t care if you step right over them as they lay in the most inconvenient places.  Fortunate, really, huh?

Lastly, here’s a picture of Sid in some of his least fashionable footwear.  These are PawZ dog boots, made specially for dogs who can’t face slippery floors, and to furnish protection from the wet for any dressings on their feet.  Though they look tight, they aren’t.  They fit nice and snug though, and they don’t fall off – which is just exactly what Sid needs when he visits the hospital and has to walk across their fearful hard floors.

And that furry rug?  That’s Sid’s very own, personal sheepskin.  He is very fond of that!