Tuesday, 9 February 2010

Rats on stilts....


There is a history of badly behaved dogs in my family, it's a fact I am not desperately proud of but a fact it is. Our dogs are not endearing either, I mean whippets aren't everyone's cup of tea are they? To us they are perfect, to others - well most say they are horribly skinny, shivery dogs but I think the best descrioption of them was something I overheard  in Wales such a long time ago now...
It was on a beach picnic in the mid 1970s there was me, Mum, my sister and two of the most badly behaved dogs ever. In their defence we were there first on the beach and it was quite empty to begin with but as the morning wore on and the sun became hotter and hotter, more and more families came to join us.
Now our two dogs Robin and Jay were northern whippets and like all whippets enjoyed sloping off to hunt whenever Mum’s back was turned. They were quite incorrigible and Mum had no control at all. From a distance she could see that her dogs were misbehaving badly. Instead of hunting up the grassy slopes away from the beach those two rascals had hit upon the best game ever - nicking everyone’s sandwiches and peeing on all the sandcastles and running like stink when people found out. It was pure heaven - for them!.
When you can do something really, really well you can’t help but show off and these two could run and it was so lovely watching them – although when I pointed this out to Mum she quite disowned them and said they weren’t ours. She rammed her sunglasses on more firmly, dug her nose more deeply into her magazine and studiously ignored the dogs.
I think this had a lot to do with the fact that there were two ample ladies in nylon flower print dresses looking disapprovingly at the dogs as well.
Creaking in their comfortable stripped canvas deck chairs one pursed her lips and said to the other: “Look you at those two dogs over by there – ooohhh, they look like rats on stilts!”

12 comments:

Diney said...

They have beautiful faces don't they? Being a dog lover, this amused me enormously. Your Mum sounds like my hubby, who will NOT admit that our present dog, Sam (who has featured a couple of times on my blog!!) is a naughty, low down food thief who snatches food from the table at lightening speed, and all round chicken snatcher!! Also, we used to have dachshunds and they were called rats (without the stilts, clearly!!!)but we loved them!

Preseli Mags said...

I like whippets but the rats on stilts comment is perfect - and very funny. That's a lovely doggy story. I can just imagine the joy on their naughty little faces!

Brit in Bosnia / Fraught Mummy said...

My current escaping from the garden dog could give yours a run for the money in worst dog ever. This afternoon I had to haul her out of someone elses house - who was afraid of dogs.

But the worst behaved dog I came across was another retriever who stole the birthday cake from a birthday picnic. I found the owner hiding behind a tree trying to ignore his dog.

Tattie Weasle said...

Diney - it is so difficult to admit that one's dog may not be perfect. Secretly I think we are in awe of their brass faced effrontery!
Preseli Mags - they were so bad but came back positively grinning, tongues lolling out, sides heaving and tails still wagging!
Brit in Bosnia - Oh no! That could so easily be me with the birthday cake! He must have been SO ashamed but did he agree to buy/get a new cake???!!!

slummysinglemummy said...

Tattie Weasle - you sound just like me talking about my kids! Sometimes my youngest is sooo bossy and over-confident I feel I should be rather ashamed, but secretly I love her for it!

Expat mum said...

Hilarious. I am terrified of whippets when there's more than one. My grandma used to live next door to a family who had about 6. Even though they couldn't get into her garden, they used to run up and down the hedge trying to get in and bark furiously. Ugh. (I'm not scared of dogs in general, -this is obviously a deep psychological wound.)

Tattie Weasle said...

slummysinglemummy - I think sometimes I muddle my dogs and my children up but don't tell! At least I'm not mixing their names up yet...
Expat Mum - Oh no terrified of whippets - I'm in shock. But there again six of them all running up and down barking. They DO have deep barks and I find it bad enough with three pushing and shoving when it's dinner time. I can imagine they were very scary! I will try and only put up pictures of one dog at a time...

Martha said...

Rats on Stilts!!! That is too funny. My husband had a whippet as a boy and of course we, too have horribly behaved dogs. Can't imagine what they'd get into if given free rein on a beach! (Especially the basset...sigh...)

So glad to have found your blog!!

Tattie Weasle said...

Martha - beaches where they allow dogs to have free rein are sadly now few and far between...but if you get up really early oh what fun a Basset could have: all those joggers!!!!!I think the best dogs are allowed room to develop their characters!

Faith said...

Best blog I've read for ages! Just the right length, interesting and funny at the end!

SmitoniusAndSonata said...

But they're so beautiful when in full flight ! And , when still , quite Egyptian .
Having said that , I'm very grateful that you all have dogs that I can admire from a distance , not being tempted to own one myself .

Von said...

Ohhh!!I can just hear the accents too! Personally I adore them.

Go on you know you want to...

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