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Auckland, North Island, New Zealand
Wine tour operator, wine writer and lapsed physiotherapist. "Nature abhors a vacuum. I personally hate dusting."


Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Shitzu Happens

When I moved in with my charming assistant, I kind of realised that I was also moving in with a nine year-old girl and a 3 year-old Shitzu/Maltese/Yorkie cross called George.  (See pic.)
Do not look upon his image, brethren, he may assume other demonic forms.

My 11 year-old Black Lab Jasper was part of my moving in package.  And in his own amiable, lumbering, accommodating and goofy way he fitted in pretty well.  As long as Jaz has a place to lie down and gets a feed and a walk each day he is extremely content.

So Georgie figured Jaz for a gentle giant and decided to take the upper hand and tried to dominate Jasper for the first few weeks, by humping the few bits of Jasper within reach of his little legs, snatching food from Jasper's plate, snarling at Jasper if he competed for affection, racing to be the First Dog at The Water Bowl after walkies. And engaging in very one-sided play fights - where George would snarl and hang on to Jasper's face and other appendages - till swatted away by the ever-patient Jasper.

Now they have settled into a fairly happy domestic relationship - George pretends he's the boss most of the time, but is not above snuggling into Jaz for a nap on a cold day, or licking his eyes every morning as some of canine facial grooming service.

I am greeted daily by George when I awake groggily trying to focus on the new day.  The first warning is the thumpitty-thumpitty-thump - as Georgie flies up the stairs.  Then a momentary pause while he launches himself toward the bed.  Then the final crash as George returns to earth - often landing upon my person in an alarmingly waking-up manner. This is followed by a furry, wet Good Morning kiss and a demand to be let under the covers, whence he snuggles up and lies completely still. 

George is the ADHD on-duty 24/Seven security dog; ready to yap extremely loudly at ANY unusual noise within 5 Km of the property.  The smell, sight or rumour of a cat will send George into wild hysterics - with mad yappy insistent barking plus running all over the garden, accompanied by vigorous sniffing under the gate.  the only time he excels in his hysteria is on Walkies - where, if he spots another dog which he hates on sight (90%) he will literally scream - so loudly and so high pitched, that bystanders assume he has either been hit by a car - and/or physically abused by myself.  On numerous occasions, I have had worried citizens rush from their houses to glare accusingly at me for imagined animal cruelty to the poor wee man.

I shrug and look as innocent as possible:  'He's seen another dog!  It's OK.  I didn't touch him!'
Yeah right - you cruel bastard.

Yennyhoo - Phil runs The Best Food & Tours in Auckland - when he isn't abusing small animals.

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