Treacle ~ Part 2 from the Usual Muttwits

Reblogged from Usual Muttwits:

A splatter of mud hits Treacle on the snout, followed by another, sailing above overhead.


Onto the pressed white shirt of Sixlegs.


Wot in butt-lickin’ hell?

As two small muddy fourlegs scramble up from the pooping pipe hole and trot towards him, crossing the High Street and dangerously dodging roundlegs.

Hi ho Treacle, snifz yuz Treacle! yaps Smudge, who lives with hindlegs in a right proper house den.

Yo, blind doggy, snifz yuz adds Mouse, a daft streetlegs who tags along with any fourlegs wotz out walkies.

Continue reading at Usual Muttwits

The Small Dog’s Vicious Circle…

Well, she’s still being weird

And she’s up half the night,

So we sit in the garden

Because stars are bright

And why shouldn’t we watch

As they twinkle and shine?

I don’t care what we’re doing

‘Cause this time is mine.


With her hands in my fur,

Or caressing my ears,

It’s this time of night

When we get to change gears,

I don’t need to guard her

Or be high altered…

Just snuggle up close

While the tension’s diverted.

By day we have unicorns

Over the fence,

All disguised as horses…

The undergrowth’s dense

To protect them from hunters,

So I’m on the case,

Of every intruder

Protecting the place.


The birds all fly in

And I chase them away,

‘Cause a garden of birdsong?

Who wants that all day?

She says that she likes it,

It’s fine by her choosing,

I say she needs quiet

And lots of nice snoozing.


And then I must move her

Make sure that she works

And does not stiffen up

…Yeah that’s one of the perks…

So I get her up throwing

What’s left of my ball

Which for quite a long time now

Has not bounced at all.


“You’ve other balls, girlie,

You have over twenty…”

“I just need The One Ball

And one ball is plenty.”

“But you could be chasing

It all round the garden!”

“That is not the idea,”

And I felt my heart harden.


Of course, my ball’s special,

I groom it and care,

And I carry it with me

To go everywhere.

But she must cared for

And exercised too…

So she has to throw it…

And fetch it back too!


The farther it bounces,

The farther she’ll run,

Then she gets too tired

Out here in the sun…

She naps and perhaps

Maybe she’ll sleep at night…

And while I know really

That should be alright…


I still want our cuddles

When everyone sleeps,

In the cold of the garden

Where silent night creeps.

I want one on one time

Just me and just her…

And her hand on my ears

And feet in my fur.


The Small Dog’s Revenge…

I must do the floor, I thought, in some despair,
The small dog is moulting and shedding her hair.
She’s out in the garden, so if I am quick,
And just whip the vac out, that should do the trick.

She’s already cross because out in the garden
I got out the lawnmower, let my heart harden,
So into the hallway she wandered off sighing,
(This dog is a drama queen) huffing and crying.

As soon as I’d finished she came out exploring
(And showed me my place with some pointed ignoring),
It is quite ironic, her coming on strong,
‘Cause she hates walking on the wet grass when it’s long.

She wandered back in with cut grass on her feet…
She couldn’t care less about keeping things neat…
So I got the hoover from where it was lurking
To set about doing much-needed houseworking.

There’s hair on the carpet and hair on the chair,
That silky-fine dog hair that gets everywhere,
I hoover it up every day, but in vain,
For in moulting season, it’s really a pain.

But halfway through hoovering, I hit a bump,
Where I was quite certain there wasn’t a lump.
It caught me off-balance, it was unexpected,
The floor and my anatomy soon connected.

Where the carpet has lain all this while nice and flat…
Was a lump, and I ought to investigate that…
I couldn’t imagine what creature might be there,
And was fairly worried about what I’d see there…

I swear I heard laughter from out in the hall
As I dug from the rug her preferred tennis ball.
Quite how she had got it there, I’ll never know
Because under the rug’s not where tennis balls go.

“Oh writer,” the small dog informed me at once,
“It went there with ease, must you be such a dunce?”
“But why, small dog, tell me, why bury the ball?”
“‘Cause I can’t protect it from here in the hall!”

She does hate the hoover, it’s always upset her,
She calls it a monster and thinks it will get her.
“That monster sucks everything right up its snout…
Do you think I would risk leaving tennis balls out?”

Not only was I feeling bruised now and aching,
I’m sure that the laughing dog’s shoulders were shaking.
She looked at me kindly, “You should take more care…”
She said, “Oh, and you realise, you’re covered in hair…”


From ‘Doggerel’, available via Amazon

The Small Dog’s Dog Days

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She’s still smelling funny,
She doesn’t look right,
She gets up and down
Like a yo-yo all night.
I’ve given up following
Each step she takes
Just watch from the sidelines
Whenever she wakes.

If I’m missing out
On my beauty sleep, she,
Who’s in need of much more
Misses out more than me.
‘Cause I can just snooze
On the sofa at ease
While she wriggles lots
Just as if she had fleas.

I really don’t like it
I have to confess,
‘Cause all my familiar
World is a mess,
It’s all upside down
All unsettled and weird,
Since that horrible day
When she just disppeared.

“We’re not sitting moping,
My girlie,” she said,
“Get up off the sofa,
Go unstuff your bed…
Go chase a few pigeons
Or dig up the mole.
Go steal all the cheese
From the fridge, eat it whole.”

“What’s this I am hearing?
Permission to sin?
Permission to raid
The recycling bin?
You actually asking me
To misbehave?
Good gracious, dear writer,
You are ill…or brave!”

“We’ve lives to live, doglet,
Be they long or short,
Too precious to squander on
Niggardly ‘ought’,
Let’s dance with the raindrops
And play in the shine…”
“Well said, writer now,
You sound almost canine!”

And so we went out
And we sent up the birds,
We barked at the horses
In lieu of cow herds,
We shared in the treats
And the joy and the sun…
And now we can snuggle
A good day’s work done 🙂

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The Small Dog’s Secret Teacher…

Well, it has not been a great week, what with the sky crying even more than she has…and she has been getting just a bit soggy around the edges, I have to say. Weirdly, I seem to set her off more than most things at the moment. She says…’cause I overheard her talking… that it is because she thinks I “must know” and she can’t help me understand better.

Well, clever-two-legsy-writer-person, I have news for you. If I already know, I don’t need it explaining, now do I? Hrmph! Honestly, that’s two-legses all over for you. Four legses don’t complicate stuff that much.

Which is how come I know anyway… whatever there is to know at the moment. Which is not, whatever she thinks, about what is going on with her dodgy mechanical bits… but all about how she needs to be looked after.  I had a visitor. Now, I wasn’t surprised, ’cause she’s been thinking about my visitor a lot, so she was almost bound to turn up… I was just surprised she saw her too. That doesn’t usually happen. Must be all the pill thingys.

When she can’t sleep at night any more, she comes on to my sofa. And, of course, I hop right up there with her to keep my head on her toes. She sighs and snuggles, but I got the feeling I was missing something. Then my visitor came and explained… she was the Dog that Went Before… and she had a special way of cuddling in behind her knees on the sofa. ‘Pparently, the two-legs loved it and slept like a baby when she got cuddled like that.

So the Dog that Went Before came round an explained… and that night, when she came through and flopped in a soggy heap on the sofa, I snuggled in behind her knees… and lo and behold, she smiled and went to sleep! So I’ve been doing it ever since.

The only glitch was, as I said, that she seems to have seen my visitor too. Even called her by name as she was showing me the best technique for snaffling unclaimed sandwiches…

“There are two black dogs in here…” Must be the morphine… “…and I know them both. Hello, Echo…” So, I had a bit of help from her Laughing Girl… and it was nice to see her smile in the night too, but a bit unnerving that she saw her… makes me wonder just what else she has seen that she wasn’t supposed to see 😉

Never mind, though… one more dog around here would be no bad thing 😉

Much love,

Ani xxx




The Small Dog has a Bad Week…

“Help! Ambulance!”

Not a good way to start your week, but last Monday, it was panic stations. My two legs went wonky and, stood all hairless in the tub, she couldn’t breathe. The next few minutes, I was going spare, I can tell you… with her gasping, the ball guy phoning, and me trying to be there for both of them and stay out of the way at the same time.

A squealy thing on wheels arrived and I sat with her while they did stuff to her. I don’t mind admitting, I was frightened and shaking a lot, but then they bundled her onto a bed thing and took her away.

I didn’t see her again for a week. I wasn’t sure I would ever see her again.

The ball guy and my boys were all really worried. There was no sign of her at all but they told me it would be okay… I didn’t really believe them. The ball guy took some of her clothes things in a bag… so I put her a chicken treat in too, just from me. When he came back, he still had the treat, but it smelled like her… so I felt a bit better, Then, he let me speak to her on the phone a few nights later. And one of my boys came round too. Then some new people.. even though she still wasn’t home. It was all a bit weird and worrying.

Even put me off my food.

Anyway, yesterday, people came with machines and everyone seemed to be getting real excited…and my boy brought her home! I was beginning to think I’d never see her again!

She smells funny… not just funny clean, but funny weird. She has obviously been at the vets a long, long time… but she came in and cuddled me as soon as I could stop wiggling.

She has a short leash attached… like a head halter so she can’t pull or escape or go very far. And it is held by a noisy thing that doesn’t move, so she is a bit stuck. Which is fine by me, as I’m barely taking my eyes off her in case she goes missing again.

I’m just hoping they don’t have to call the squealy thing again now. She still doesn’t seem right, but I am watching her like a hawk and pretty much glued to her feet. It is really hard to guard them when you don’t know what is going in or where.

So it has been a hard week…and a worrying one… but at least she is home where I know I can keep her safe. I hope.

Maybe I should sleep in her bed to make sure?

Much love, Ani xxx





When something fell from heaven,
“Well! What’s this?” the small dog said,
“If clouds are raining food, now,
Could I have a steak instead?”

A crow had dropped its breakfast
And it landed on the grass,
But seeing Ani’s interest
Decided it would pass.

The small dog was a bit confused
And thought she’d ask the question,
So brought the evidence to me
Before she tried digestion

It wasn’t long since breakfast though,
And not one to be beaten,
Once reassured, she buried it,
“Elevenses, uneaten.”

She tucked it in beneath the green
“I’m saving it,” she muttered,
“But when I dig it up again,
Could I please have it buttered?”

The Small Dog’s 10 Best Tips for Training your Two-Legs

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The correct training of your two-legs… ‘specially visiting two-legses…is critical to their well-being. I thought I’d share my ten favourite tips for the establishment of proper pack behaviour…

ani window1. Use advanced surveillance techniques. Never let them arrive unexpectedly. This gives you a unfair unique advantage. You, of course, will know long before your two-legs that a visitor is arriving. They have to wait for a knock on the door. Which means, you can be ready… and waiting…

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2. Decontamination. You don’t know where they’ve been… they may even have been near cats! But a thorough washing both cleans them up and lets you investigate. They, poor things, have a problem with soap and smelly stuff… they smear it all over. They taste a lot better when it is all gone. They think you are being cute and giving kisses… but that’s okay. We know better… And anyway, if they are going to stuff us in baths with their smelly stuff, what do they expect?

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3. Let them play. They like to think they know best. They also think they understand humour. There are limits, however. Me, I draw the line at coats and fluffy jumpers. I know some short-hairs like ’em them in cold weather, but I’m quite happy in my own skin. Still, if you let them play their games, they have no excuses when it’s your turn 🙂

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4. Establish firm boundaries. This is especially important with regards to your sofa. It may be necessary to demonstrate… If they still don’t get it, ignore them. Then, if all else fails, sit on ’em.

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5. Establish ownership. While it is possible to allow your two-legs a certain amount of freedom, it is best to show them quite clearly in which areas you are in charge. This obviously includes the ‘fridge and its contents.


6. Obedience training. Set the ground rules early and be consistent. This should be one of your first priorities. They need to know exactly what you expect of them.

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7. Prevent boredom. A bored two-legs will only get into trouble. Stimulate their minds by setting them puzzles. It might take them a while to work out what they are supposed to be doing, but it keeps them out of mischief. Just give them some attention and encourage them…

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8. Keep them active. Your two-legs need plenty of exercise… ‘specially if they are inclined to sit in front of their little boxes all day. Two…or three…nice long walks every day should do the trick, but you can always encourage some activity in the gym too…

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9. Encourage a healthy diet. This means making sure they keep you well supplied with food, treats and tidbits. Their diet doesn’t bear thinking about. Apart from the cheese and the chicken…. I think ’bout those a lot.

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10. Keep them happy. Give them plenty of cuddles so they know they are loved. Listen to them when they talk to you, be aware of their feelings… and share every laughing moment you can with them.

ani (1)Remember, a happy, healthy two-legs will, if properly loved and cared for, last you a lifetime. Ani winks

Much love,

Ani xxx

Cuween Hill Chambered Cairn #Orkney #Scotland

“Any people that revere their dogs this well have my approval,” writes Deborah Jay.
I can only agree 😉


Back again to yet another Neolithic chambered cairn – this one, Cuween Hill, is the final one we visited, and I’m glad, because I can tell you, if this had been the first, I would never have gone inside!

The approach is up a steep hill (guess the name gives that away!), and it isn’t until you get up close that you realise just how low the entrance passage really is.

The only way to enter was by waddling through in a squatting position, unless you wanted to crawl on hands and knees, which would have been an option but for the large puddle which extended inside as well as out.

Now I’m really not great with confined spaces, and although I waddled my way in on my haunches okay, the moment I stood up inside, I wanted to get back out again. Having the only exit at knee height…

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The Small Dog Despairs…


Sometimes…well, okay, often, I despair of my two-legs, I really do.

She is so proud of how well we communicate, but what she really means is that while I understand loads of her language, not just smells and body language, but words too… she can pretty much only understand a little bit of mine.

Granted, she has got used to telling the difference between the special blinks that just show I’m paying attention and the ones that show that, in spite of everything, I love her. And she’s got a pretty good vocabulary for barks, ear-angles and tails. She knows when I’m not feeling too good and can ‘read’ when I am inviting her to play… and even tell the difference between when I’m telling the pigeons to go away or when there is a real intruder out there.

But, she just doesn’t get my singing.

I think the problem is my parentage. She’s used to setters… she knows I am intelligent, even though some dog sites use words like ‘a little willful’ and say we have ‘a tendency toward independent decision making’… But she’s never lived with a Toller before… and my dad was a Toller. Now, the site does mention my intelligence and inventiveness, even if it does say I am ‘strong willed’ and ‘can take control of a household’. It also says, “screams, sheds, likes to roll in dead fish and other stinky things, and is generally smarter than the average person.”

Well, I don’t scream… but I do sing. And my two-legs has no musical appreciation…or understanding.

Take the other night. I am curled up on the sofa. Outside it is dark and damp, but she still has the door open for me. And then, I see it… an intruder… so I start singing to her to let her know. It was fairly obvious… but all I get is,

“What’s the matter, girlie?”

“Don’t you feel well, my girl?”

Then she gets up to come and cuddle me.

That’s all very well, and normally, I’d be fine with that, but six inches of fat, brown slug is now slithering down the side of the rug towards my ball. I’d have dealt with it myself, but I’m not allowed to touch slugs. So I kept singing. And it took me ages to get her to look in the right direction!

And they call me a ‘dumb animal’…

I mean, she did get it eventually and unstuck the thing from the floor. They weld themselves onto it, you know. She said it would be happier in the garden. I thought she would be happier not finding it barefoot in the dark…

It is hard work being the intelligent one in this household 😉

So, anyway, I’m going to have a bit of a rest, ’cause she’s off adventuring again for the first time in ages, and I’m going to stay somewhere I don’t need to guard quite as much. I’ll tell you about it when I get back.

Much love,

Ani xxx




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