Little Poppy's 4th Birthday
Received a lovely email earlier from Julie who has Poppy. Poppy is from Reggie's first ever litter of pups and her Mother is Dolly. Poppy was born the 29th October 2011, so it is Poppy's 4th Birthday today.
I'm still following and enjoying your blog so I feel I know what you are up to, and thought I'd email a couple of pictures of Poppy (who is four today!).
As I type this she is as usual snuggled up to me on the sofa. She is doing great and is more loved with every year - I can't believe she is four already. We still get stopped with people commenting on how pretty and good natured she is. Even on the tube where, as you know, people NEVER speak to each other, complete strangers will start
chatting and wanting to say hello to her.
Poppy was assessed a little while ago for a Pets As Therapy dog and for the last year we have been going into a school on the Read2Dogs scheme. She is so good, even with children who haven't been taught either how to behave around dogs or how to stroke a dog, she is very calm and gentle. Hopefully we've given the children these skills too as well as helping them learn to read.
As it was her birthday I tried to give her a perfect doggy day - two really longs walks, yummy treats and lots of attention. Unfortunately she blew it by rolling in the remains of a very smelly rat and was dunked in the bath on our return. She definitely hasn't got the water loving poodle part in her. She really doesn't like water and as yet has not attempted to swim. I've taken her for walks with water loving dogs and she's watched them dive in after balls and sticks but so far she has not been in further than her knees (if dogs had knees that is).
The pictures were both taken today - the one with the cat shows her waiting for our eldest cat to move so she can try and chase her. She gets on with both our cats and the two of them had been sleeping side by side quite happily minutes before this was taken but she can't resist running after them when they go downstairs.
Hope this email finds you and your family well.
Thanks Julie and as always it is lovely to hear from you and that Poppy is such a loved family member. Great to hear how she is helping children as a therapy dog. I just emailed Julie back and told her that dogs do actually have knees on their hindlegs. Just like humans they have a patella, which is the knee cap. The condition called Luxating patella in dogs is the knee cap dislocating. Most mammals have the same bones, just modified to the way they/we use them. If you take a real close look at skeletons, you really start to understand the theory of evolution and how it works over millions of years. Anatomy really is a big interest to me, especially the muscular and ligature structure, which with the skeleton is the most amazing pulley system.
Anyway I won't go on, because Poppy has seven litter siblings that are also four years old today. So a Big Happy 4th Birthday to Poppy and her litter siblings Betsy, Alfie, Edward, Chilli, Luna, Bella and Cyril. I hope you all had a lovely day and that you are all happy and healthy.
Our oldest daughter Florrie has made her youngest sibling a Halloween mask.
I have just been changing duvets on the children's beds, and piled the dirty ones up ready to be cleaned. Toby and Henry decided that it looked the ideal place to snuggle down and go to sleep.
'Dogs...do not ruin their sleep worrying about how to keep the objects they have, and to obtain the objects they have not. There is nothing of value they have to bequeath except their love and their faith'
- Eugene O'Neil
'She is great!!'
I received this update from Hayley yesterday, who has Bella, who is from the pure Cavalier litter we bred this year in June, with her Mum being Primrose and her Dad being Toby.
Just thought I'd drop you an email to let you know how Bella's getting on.
She is great!! Not going to lie it's been pretty hard all adjusting into a new routine with three young children and she seemed to have her crazy moment when it was the "morning school getting ready" time!! Ha ha ! But she has calmed down a lot lately and just goes with the flow now!
She did have to have her anal glands emptying, she was scooting quite a bit and then started to cry out unexpectedly so we took a trip to the vet (which she doesn't like) and had them emptied, fingers crossed this helps now for a while.
She loves her daily walk but I am having a problem with pulling on the lead a bit, we let her off when we are in a safe place (beach or woods etc) but when I take her other places which involves crossing few roads I do keep her on the lead and she does seem to pull like a crazy dog!! Will have to look up about this! Any advice? If she sees a runner or other people/ dogs she just pulls like a mad woman!
All in all she is a gentle loving dog my children all adore, we love her and think this breed is just remarkable, like you say it's just the health issues! She's so funny and will follow my youngest around when he has something to eat in his hand hoping he'll drop it!! And she'll Hoover up anything we drop!!! We have noticed a bit of separation anxiety at night again lately and she does seem to cry a lot so we have given in and let her sleep upstairs with us! I wasn't totally against it, I just didn't want a toilet accident upstairs on anyone's bed or anything, we'll see how it goes!!
I hope you're all keeping well and I saw the photo of Isobel! Let's hope she stays healthy and lasts a while yet!! I've added some photos.
Hayley and family X'
Thanks Hayley for the update on Bella. It might be best to look in to some puppy/dog training classes which will help with any issues such as pulling when being lead. Good luck with the sleeping upstairs.
And here are a couple photos of Bella's Mum, Primrose and Dad, Toby taken last night.
A beautiful nearly full moon to finish off a lovely Sunday. Thomas finished off his model King Tiger (Although he has told me he has to do a few more bits to the paintwork) and it was lined up alongside some of the models made by his brothers to show how big the King Tiger was. The vehicles are all to the same scale.
Then it was time to have supper and get out the Birthday cake which was made yesterday evening with some very excited siblings. After making the cake the kitchen looked like it had been hit by a snow storm of icing sugar.
Thomas looked very happy with his cake and as usual Henry was fascinated by the candles. A busy Sunday and a busy week ahead as the children are home from school for the week as it is half-term.
After the half-term I will start to get things rolling with annual health tests with the dogs and also looking at what we will be doing with the dogs in 2016. Sorry I wrote I would publish details of litters for 2016 shortly on the 'Litters' page, as this may of caused confusion. In Devon we go about business at a different pace it seems than elsewhere. I should of said, "I will publish details for 2016 when I get to it."
Now I'm off to watch a film with the children and probably be woken by their laughter at David and me because we have fallen asleep.whilst watching it with them.
Down to the river
Smudge and her Mother, Millie along with Dolly came with us to the river and the photo is of them back in the car after the walk.
Thomas's amphibious remote control car did turn out to be amphibious, but not to good in a strong current.
Cleo joins us for lunch
When we came in for lunch today my Mum's Cleo decided to join us. Cleo had one litter of pups back in 2012, five Cavapoo pups called Ted, Meg, Hamish, Milo and Murphy. Hope you are all happy and well.
Because we have our son, Thomas's Birthday supper later, lunch was just a sandwich, but what a sandwich. My husband handed me this whilst doing my blog and although I could say, it was made with love. I think it might be more appropriate to say it was made with half a loaf of bread. That is one mother of a BLT sandwich. 'I may be gone for sometime.'
In for lunch
Mid morning coffee break and our daughter Molly decided to do a bit of film directing. Look out for Blottie at the end of the video checking out where some snacks had been on a plate. Blottie is a total opportunist.
Let sleeping dogs lie
If you lie down with dogs,
If you lie down with dogs, studies have shown you are less likely to have high blood pressure, suffer from anxiety and they can boost your immunity.
Studies have shown that children brought up with pets from before four years old, are less likely to have allergies and asthma, than those introduced to pets after the age of four years old.
In a recent study they analysed blood of babies immediately after birth and one year old later. They were looking for evidence of an allergic reaction, immunity changes, and for reactions to bacteria in the environment.
Where a dog lived in the home, the infant was less likely to show evidence of pet allergies 19% vs 33%. They were also less likely to have eczema and they had higher levels of some immune chemicals, a sign of having a stronger immune system activation.
Researcher James E. Gern, MD, a pediatrician at the University of Winconsin-Madison said in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, "Dogs are dirty animals, and this suggests that babies who have greater exposure to dirt and allergens have a stronger immune system."
So if you lie down with dogs, just make sure they have been treated for fleas and then the only thing you will be getting up with is a smile on your face.
Bringing in the cows
As well as rearing our children and looking after our dogs, I also work part-time milking cows. I've been milking cows now for 28 years. When asked why I milk cows the answer simply is, "For some strange reason I enjoy it". I could get all romantic now and tell about as a young child I used to stay on a friends farm and how I would stand at the end of the parlour from the age of 5 waiting for the farmer to tell me how many pulls on a handle I had to do to release cake, as each cow came in the parlour or the summer I spent starring at the summer sky with a cow I called "99" because that was her brand mark, I did not realise at that time she was a barren cow and it was her last summer lying in the grass with the sun on her back, but I know the enjoyment she showed when my little hands would caress and smooth her, her last summer was a good summer. My Mum would call for me and say, "What are you doing up there in the field with that old cow?" No, milking cows ain't for the romantic.
With 28 years of milking there is a lot to tell. The only problems is recalling the tales. Often a tale is recalled because something of a similar nature happening joults the old grey matter. So tales are told as they are recalled. Today though is a tale from this summer, so still freshly ingrained in to the grey matter. Around four months ago I was milking the weekend and on the Sunday morning I strolled out across the field around 5.30am to bring the cows in to be milked. I noticed one of the cows stood a bit peculiar with her head slung low and not moving on with the rest of the cows. I got up next to her and putting my hand on her hindquarters told her to, "Get on, girl" Rather than move she just kept sharply turning back on me and first impressions I thought she was trying to be a bit bullish with me, but with a bit of waving of arms and shooing she moved off, although at a rapid rate down towards the gate, but she missed the gate way and ended up head first in the hedge. I got down beside her and tried to get her back out of the hedge and on doing so, on trying to move her again, she would again keep turning towards me as if trying to knock me over. Then she ran into the hedge again and thus proceeded to bulldoze down through the hedge. By this time I was starting to consider that she could not see or she was in the throws of dying. I have seen cows behave similar to this just before dropping down dead.
I left her, because at that moment there was nothing I could do without seriously risking my own health with her and proceeded in getting the rest of the cows in. Once the rest of the cows were in the yard I ran to the house to get the farmer, I work for to go and take a look at her. When I knocked on the door, Steve was on his way out, which surprised me. He's wife told me later, that he was already up when I knocked, because they heard a gate go in the yard that I don't normally use, which had alerted them that something was up.
I told Steve about the cow and remarked, "The way she is behaving, I think she might be blind." I got on milking the cows and waited on news of the cow. Steve returned about twenty minutes later to tell me he had found her up on her back in the corner of the field and had got her on her side and he was of the mind that she could be dying. He rang the vet though and the vet turned up. Confirmed she was blind and then it was why had a cow that came in the parlour the night before totally fit and well, could be totally blind by the morning without a mark on her. The vet thought it could possibly be two things, a vitamin B1 deficiency or meningitis. Vitamin B1 deficiency can cause blindness and meningitis can cause inflammation behind the eye leading to temporary blindness. He treated the cow for both and took bloods to try and discover what the cause was. I milked in the evening and the cow was then comfortable out in the field up grazing and when I milked a couple days later in the morning the cow merrily skipped into the parlour, apparently able to see okay.. No other cows have gone blind and in 28 years milking that was a first for me, going out in the field to find a cow totally blind from being okay the day before and was also a first for the farmer I work for. As for the cow, she is now heavy in calve due to be dried off soon. A week later the blood results came back with nothing, inconclusive and just shows how much we think we know, working with animals you realise, there will always be more that we don't know.
Yesterday I received this update from Karen who has Tilly. Tilly is Harvey's (Who I blogged an update for on the blog before this one) maternal half-sister. Smudge is her Mother and Henry is her Dad. She is from our first ever crossbreed litter of Cavalier cross Brittany Spaniel born April 2015.
Just thought I'd send you an update on Tilly. She’s lying next to me in her bed very tired after a 2 hour walk this morning; I've also attached a 'wobbly’ clip of her on the common this weekend.
She is such an amazing dog and we are stopped everyday by other owners who are intrigued by her breed. Tilly is still incredibly calm and has been a delight to train. Her recall is excellent and she will always come bounding back when we call her. She loves chasing birds and unfortunately eating horse poo! She sleeps well at night, although more recently seems to wake and gets ‘spooked’ by foxes that come into our garden.
Things are still going well her dog minder David, and Tilly seems to get very exciting when we take her there 2 days a week.
I'm glad that all is well with her siblings and it's wonderful to see what lovely dogs they've become.
Thanks Karen, lovely to hear everything is going so well with Tilly, especially how much she likes going to stay with her dog minder.
I received this lovely update just over a week ago from Liza for Harvey. Harvey is from one of Smudge's litters. Born in February 2014, with Reggie his Dad.
I've been meaning to drop you an email all summer and before you know it we are in October.
Firstly ...I love the new look website ! I really do enjoy being able to check in and see how you are all getting on - the pups have been so lovely to watch.
Harvey is just over 18mnths old so I am still clinging on to him being a puppy, where has this time gone? Anyway as I always say he is such a beautiful boy and he is doing really well and we have had an amazing summer - we drove through France in June for two weeks so Harvey now has his passport and we have just returned from the Lake District. The highlight of the holiday was swimming every day in Lake Annecy with him - I've always wanted to be able to swim with my dog to it was very special and great fun. The weather was quite hot so when I managed to keep him out of the water for a 10 min break I then worried about sun stroke for dogs …hence he is wearing my baseball cap while he dried off in the sun. I thought he'd only keep it on for a moment but he decided to fall asleep with it on in the end.
Harvey is ball mad and he is restricted to having a ball only on his morning mon-fri walks otherwise he becomes too obsessed and does not interact with anything or anyone. The 2nd image is where he smuggled one on in rush hour on the tube and dropped it at someones feet to throw it. He always manages to find a ball on a walk and a victim to throw it for him. He has worked out that if he drops a wet soggy ball in any of the girls at work designer handbags they scream are very quick to fuss and throw it for him. He has mini haircuts as I like his hair looking a bit messy and natural - we all think he has Dolly Partons hair/wig on the top and Kenny Rogers beard !
He is such a happy dog, is kind and likes to have fun, he loves all dogs and is always up for a play. Apart from a ball his other love is food so I have to be quite strict with him as he is always getting caught with his head in the bin or stealing food out of peoples bags at work. He gets up to two hours of walks a day, hardly any treats and is in fairly good shape and he wieghs 14.5KG which I know is heavy for the breed. Everyone asks me if he is a cockerpoo as he is quite solid, I never thought he'd be as big but I would not have it any other way now. I remember emailing you saying my vet had joked about him being a 15KG dog …well he is nearly there.
Nothing more to report on except he is in good health and having a lovely time …no more holidays this year but hopefully northern Spain next year.
Best wishes all the best
Liza & Harvey x"
Thanks Liza for letting me know how what a wonderful dog Harvey has grown in to. Sounds like he takes after his Mother getting caught with his head in the bin stealing food and after his Dad when it comes to retrieving, although Harvey's Mother does have a brother called, Oliver who I believe is an obsessional ball retriever.
Dog wrestling: Bumble and Blottie
I got this bit of video footage this morning. Henry plays with his daughters and I was trying to catch him playing with them, but as you will see I just caught the tail end of him playing with them, but Blottie and Bumble go on to have a bit of a wrestle together. The social skill of a dog playing with another is very important. Note how they time out or stop biting so hard if one of them scream out.
I watch this and for the life of me cannot understand how anyone would wish to make dogs fight with each other viciously and wish to watch one dog kill another. Mind I cannot understand people who want to for entertainment make or watch horror movies or graphically violent movies. This is from someone who would not have a problem skinning and dressing a rabbit for their supper.
Enjoying a mild Autumn
We are having a very mild dry Autumn at the moment and if going by the weather forecast though it is set to change tomorrow to rain. Yesterday I got some video footage of the dogs outside in the evening enjoying the lovely autumnal weather we have been experiencing.
THe slideshow is of the dogs over the last few days, mostly sleeping.
Heads and heartache: The reality
On the 5th October I wrote the blog Heads and heartache and a couple days after posting that blog I received the email below from Linda who recently lost her Cavalier from one of the conditions I mentioned that when getting a brachycephalic breed, you could be signing yourself up for, laryngeal collapse.
Hi Jane, I have been reading your lovely blog about your Cavaliers.
I thought you may be interested to hear our experience as not many Cavalier owners seem aware of it but you have actually written about it!
Our wonderful and totally adorable Blenheim has just had to be PTS after an awful episode of ill health. He had a laryngeal collapse and was given a permanent tracheostomy at a specialist centre. I believe he had many problems because he was brachycephalic (is that the term?) No one ever warned us of potential health risks due to this and until it happened I was unaware of the issues. I am sure we could have spared him, or at least help prevent, his grade 3 laryngeal collapse if we had been better informed and been made more aware of the effects of this condition by vets dealing with him.
He began to suffer with loud snoring, gagging, panting in the heat and after exercise. I now know it is because he could not get enough breath He also suffered from dry eye diagnosed in his first year. The sad thing was that he was an intrepid little dog who loved exercise. After an anaesthetic for a routine procedure he became hoarse and shortly after that his larynx collapsed. He was just 7. His heart, for which his parents had been tested, was very good So testing can work.
I am not sure that they treat little Cavaliers holistically Ours was always at the vets with issues and we had little advice or any attempts to look at the bigger picture. I would advise Cavalier owners to check out any potential health issue and ask the vet to watch for signs of ill health. I should have made myself much more aware of potential issues and got him referred to a specialist much earlier but I did not know they existed!
I am so pleased to read that you are trying to improve the breed. We feel that there could not be a more delightful pet than a Cavalier. Ours brought such joy to so many people and we miss him dreadfully, I could never get another one unless the breed health was greatly improved, so thank you for what you do.
Best wishes with your lovely dogs, (ours also used to steal sandwiches, given a chance).
Unfortunately this is one of the conditions brachycephalic dogs are more prone to and is also a condition that dogs bred very small such as the Toy Poodle are more prone to as well and is one of the reasons why we decided against crossing the Cavalier with the toy Poodle and only cross with the middle sized Poodle, the Miniature Poodle.
Thanks Linda for sharing this, as I know corresponding with you that it has not been easy to go over the events leading up to the loss of your Cavalier boy.
Non-pupil day 2015
Today was a non-pupil day for our three oldest children that attend secondary school. I seem to recall they had one around this time last year. So Bert, Alfie, Florrie and me got the work at home done up quick this morning and we loaded up Henry, his daughter Bumble and Bumble's maternal Grandmother Millie, and headed to Kingsford Hill to have a brisk walk up through Northcote and Upcott woods which is just under 100 acres of woodland owned by the Woodland Trust www.woodlandtrust.org.uk.
Bumble is from our first cross litter of Cavalier/Brittany and is now nearly six months old. At Poundlane we are trying to breed a Cavalier type spaniel more healthy and with the Blenheims (orange and white) getting them back more to their origins of the Marlborough spaniel, who like the Blenheim spaniels that followed on from them at Blenheim castle were small cocking spaniels, used for flushing wildlife out of tight covers towards lurchers and hounds or nets and latterly guns.
Spaniels were used in packs like hounds are used today. I know someone who has seen a pack of Cavaliers being used for hunting in France. This person was a very prominent lady in the hunting fraternity. She told me about the Cavalier pack some 25 years ago, because our Cavaliers if they happened to wander, would pass by her home and on a couple occasions take a young hound she was puppy walking on a baptism of fire for their first hunting experience. She told us that she loved to see our Cavaliers working up through the valley below us and on one occasion retrieving them from her, she told me of seeing a pack of Cavaliers being used for hunting in France. She told me it was one of the most fun days she had, had out with a pack. I'm would not know if the pack still exists, I would be surprised if it did. I have tried to see if any mention of it can be found on the internet and have come up with nothing for it, but struck a bit of gold and found this You Tube clip, proving that you can take the Cavalier out of the hunt, but you can't always take the hunter out of the Cavalier.
Bumble is one of the girls we kept back from our litter of Cavalier cross Brittany litter bred April 2015. She is a very gentle dog, but still full of mischief, as a young dog should be.
The photos in the above slideshow were taken a couple days ago and the slideshow below with Bumble on my lap were taken last night in the kitchen. Whilst I was sat talking to my husband, David, Bumble jumped up on my lap and then fell fast asleep. Bumble definitely has a lot got a lot of the Cavalier about her when it comes to how much cuddling she can absorb. She reminds me very much of her Grandmother, Millie at this age.
I had my haircut yesterday and our daughter, Molly was walking behind me yesterday evening outside, after coming home from school and she suddenly realised I had, had my haircut, saying, "Mum, you have had your haircut." I replied, "Yes" and she then said, "I thought you had because it looked more grey at the back." What do they say, "Only fools and children tell the truth."
Henry's got a bit of a goatee
I took this photo of Henry yesterday and at first glance it looks like he has got a bit of a goatee going on in it.
Looking at it again, I realised it was as he was leaning forward stretching, just his chest hair. Lol
Dawn at Poundlane
Sometimes I forget what a beautiful place I live in. When I say I forget, really I should say, I forget how lucky I am to live where I do. The most unfortunate person to be in life are often those who are lucky, but spend most or all of their life not realising that.
Photo or pencil
Just took this photo of Henry fast asleep with his two daughters, Blottie and Bumble without a flash. Loaded it up on the computer and put it in black and white. I think it is hard to tell whether it is a photo or a pencil drawing. Sometimes I think I should rename the site 'Let sleeping dogs lie.' The amount of photos I load up on here of our dogs sleeping.
Pumpkin harvest is in at Poundlane
Pumpkin harvest is in. This year is my second year at trying to grow pumpkins. Although numbers are down on last year (due to the damp summer causing mildew on leaves and loads of slugs) I've managed to grow one big pumpkin, which is bigger than any we had last year.
I picked the last one today. When I say picked. I mean I was trying to stand it up because of its side discolouring and it snapped off. Oops!. It now though has time to ripen, going orange by the end of the month hopefully.
The smallest pumpkin was broken off by the dogs running in around the pumpkins. So with the weather, the slugs and the dogs, I think we are lucky to have any pumpkins. I'm taking having four pumpkins as a result.
"Your adorable Cavapoos"
I received an email from Anne who has Chilli, who will be four years old soon, titled as above. Chilli is from one of Dolly's litters with Reggie his Dad.
Just wanted to let you know that our friend "Joyce", who is besotted with Chilli, has passed your details onto a work colleague.
So...... you may well be getting an enquiry.....
Joyce is also thinking of contacting you next year when she retires! I've told her to contact you well in advance as I'm sure you have waiting lists.
Chilli would love to have a friend to play with:-)
He has just been for a walk along the coastal path.... it's such wonderful weather!
He was groomed last night so is looking very "coiffed". I've attached a picture for you to admire:-)
He was soooooooo excited after it was done...... just like the puppy that he remains which is part of his wonderful charm.
Hope all is well with you and your family.
Thanks Anne for the lovely photo of Chilli all spruced up and for passing our details on to your work colleague looking to get a dog in the future. We are not planning any first cross f1 litters of Cavapoos for the foreseeable future. In 2016 we are looking at breeding from Chilli's full sister (not from the same litter), Treacle. This will be producing a second generation Cavapoo, but as we will be breeding back to a pure Cavalier, which will be an f1b litter, because you are taking a first cross and then breeding that to one of the purebreeds in the first cross. This litter will quickly revert to looking like less exaggerated Cavaliers, so will not have the look of a first generation Cavapoo.
Anyone interested in this f1b litter. Please, read our website page 'Buying A Puppy From Poundlane' which tells you how we now run waiting lists, visiting us etc.
“The greatest pleasure of a dog is that you may make a fool of yourself with him, and not only will he not scold you,but he will make a fool of himself, too.”
― Samuel Butler
Me (Jane) with Puddin' and Teagol, waiting patiently to flush a patch of kale, December 2019
Hello, I am Jane!