Golden Oldies

Womble is around 14 years old now.

He still has terrier tenacity in spades- as far as he is concerned the postie would have killed us all years ago without his barking!

He still enjoys leaping on Marley, nipping him as he zooms.

He is a big fan of playing with my youngest Whippet Arthur and having a good wrestle!

His age is gradually starting to show though.

As he moves away confused when the Whippets tear past him during one of his potters round the garden.

Now and then we catch him just sat in the garden staring at the house, not realising he can walk straight back in as the back door is wide open.

He leaps to the sofa to shove the others out the way for fuss, but catapults backwards as his legs don’t quite make it up there.

He’s starting to wind down, don’t get me wrong, there is SO much life in the old dog yet! He still rules the Whippets with an iron fist 😉

But I’m becoming more focussed on how we can enjoy time without too much physical exercise.

Womble and Ollie enjoying a nice walk a few years ago

Womble, in true terrier style, would still love a few hours walking a day, but his body would protest severely if I let him.

So we stick to mooches with Arthur for now, simply avoiding dogs he reacts to make for an easy life.

There are still so many things he can enjoy though, and he is very much still getting a lot out of his days.

I feel its important he gets plenty to do still, and so does Ollie. As while Ollie might only be 11 years old, he most certainly feels it more physically than Womble.

Ollie has pretty much always been an old man, so behaviour change wise, there aren’t too many to note! He is just a bit stiffer and wobbly on his legs. It’s more a case of ensuring Ollie does something, anything aside from sleeping!

I’m trying to vary our day to day activities, to keep their minds sharp and their bodies active.

We usually start the day with breakfast, something tasty added each day for variety. Natural yoghurt, sardines, a chicken wing. All are big hits. If I can pop it is a slow feeder I will, to engage those brains a bit more.

Neither can do a good long walk, but I’m very lucky we have a good sized garden!

Womble likes to play music in his spare time!

The two can join some matwork and basic training out there. Some recall games to keep the body moving, trot poles are fun too!

They’re a big fan of hunting out a nice natural rabbit ear or similar chew I’ve hidden, really working that nose, brain and body! They both look so incredibly proud and overjoyed to find it! Even when it’s barely hidden for daft Ollie.

They enjoy a bit of training, for Ollie it’s the stuff he knows well, but it brings such a light to his eyes to spin in circle, shoeing off his skills! Womble likes to work on anything, but his attention span wanes a bit more these days, so fun stuff is usually on the agenda. He’s recently decided he loves a sheepskin tuggy, so he enjoys that one too!

One thing they both enjoy the most though, is to just ensure I sit with them and fuss them. The company and direct attention is what they crave the most.

They might be starting to slow down, but that doesn’t mean we can’t enjoy things still. It just means instead of long walks together, sometimes we just sit in the garden together and appreciate the sounds of the fledgling blackbird (that seems thrilled that he survived a brush with Arthur!)

Ollie and Womble have never hugely clicked. Ollie had firm words with Womble over his humping when he arrived and although Womble backed down, he held a grudge ever since. Ollie had no issues with Womble, after a walk in the rain he’d lick womble and attempt to keep him comfortable. This was always met with a curl of the lip and grumble.

But these days they spend much time together curled up, Womble allows Ollie to engage with him and actively seeks him out for comfort (to lay on perhaps!) These two are such different dogs, but seemingly getting closer as time goes on.

I will be blogging alot more on how these two enjoy life, and new games rather than letting Marley and Arthur hog the limelight!

Happy walks together!

Help my dog won’t come in from the garden!

This is something that I hear often, particularly from puppy owners.
It can be a nightmare, as you are calling and calling your puppy in from the garden, and this doesn’t work and they continue to run around, in fact when you go to approach them to bring them in… they seem to think its a game and run around more right?


Dogs do what works for them, so we need to be sure coming in when called pays off for your dog.

Think about when you call your dog when they are in the garden. Chances are high you call them, they might initially return, and then you shut them in.

Wow. Double whammy of not so fun! Not only did they not get paid for their good behaviour, but then they had to be shut in, that is a bad result for a dog who wants to enjoy time in the garden.

If you call them in a few times, don’t reward them and shut them in.. and your dog finds time in the garden pays off more…they will decide staying in the garden pays off more, and start ignoring you calling them in. This is what usually happens and then the dog becomes more and more likely to refuse.



There are two simple tips that will help ensure your dog comes flying to you when you need them to come in from the garden!

1. Practice recall in the garden alot. Make sure you are paying your dog with high value treats, be sure not to nag and only use their name and recall command once in a really exciting way!

2. Practice by the back door, call your dog reward them for coming…then let them back into the garden! This teaches them that being called into the house doesn’t mean the end of fun! This will really help to strengthen your dogs recall into the house as it means good things and doesn’t always mean the end of fun.

Also, never chase your dog to bring them in, this WILL make it into a game or make returning to the house stressful, instead practice as suggested above.

Practice little and often and you will find that your dog is soon flying into the house whenever you call them!