Puppies grow up

Amina (who you’ll remember was previously named ‘Amiina’, and has subsequently lost an ‘i’ but fortunately not an eye) is 17 weeks old today, and is growing fast.

First day on the beach

She’s eating meat, bonemeal, vegetables and a little fruit. Great fun. Preparing her dinner us just as much fun as cooking for people (a little grated carrot, half an egg, some meat, a teaspoon of bonemeal, sprinkle of olive oil…) with the exception of minced tripe, which has a strange and disturbingly fishy smell.

In the sunlight you catch a hint of chocolate brown, but otherwise she still looks very black. Her coat is still very straight, with the exception of a curly tail.

Walking her is enormous fun, and both Rachel and I are feeling fitter and happier through the enforced exercise regime. Socially, dogwalking is very different from regular walking. You meet people who are friendly and want to talk to you when you have a dog.. and an adorable puppy makes even non-dogwalkers want to say hello.

She’s already good at “come here”, “sit”, “stay”, “leave”, “paw” and “heel”. Obedience classes start tomorrow night, and I’m hoping add “lay down” and “fetch” to her repertoire. “Put the dinner on” may be beyond her, at least until she gets a bit taller and can reach the oven.

Not just a Min

Mrs Roo and I picked up a Labradoodle puppy yesterday. We have named her Amiina (after one of our favourite Icelandic bands), but she is already also known as Min and sometimes Minnie.

Amiina - ready to pounce

Her mother is a chocolate brown lab, and her dad a black show poodle. At 11 weeks old she is very labrador-like. Whether her coat will remain so dark and straight is unsure. First generation (F1) labradoodle’s vary greatly, but one this is for sure: she’s staggeringly cute and it’s already clear she is a lovely dog. Playful yet gentle, intelligent and calm.

We picked Min up from the breeder yesterday, stopping at the vet on the way home. She was weighed, vaccinated, ID chipped, and given a worming tablet, none of which she seemed to mind at all. We’ve been house training her, which just involves a lot of watching, instant removal to outside at the appropriate moment and lots of praise. It’s going well. After less than 24 hours she’s already letting us know she wants to go outside when she needs the toilet. Even better: she didn’t wake us last night (no mess to clean up in the morning. Hoping that continues). I’m quite enjoying the responsibility, as well as the fun, of having a puppy.

I have to leave Rachel with Min all of next week, so I’ve been getting my share of play in this weekend. I had a lovely moment earlier when I introduced her to the beautiful music of the band whose name she shares. The dog has taste, and listened attentively with me, gradually relaxing on my lap and falling asleep.

I wonder if I can sneak them both into California with me in my suitcase?

Update: ‘Amiina’ soon became simplified to ‘Amina’. She’s still “Min” most of the time.

More photos

A trip down memory lane

This weekend was a trip down memory lane, for my parents at least. I wasn’t even born when they lived in Wandsworth, but Rachel and I enjoyed joining them on a tour of their old haunts on Saturday.

The Park Tavern Woodhams House Woodhams House

On Saturday night we celebrated Uncle Terry’s 40th birthday, and it was excellent to meet my brother’s Finnish (but currently living and working in Iceland) girlfriend Hanna. She is quite the whizz with a camera, having captured some excellent shots of the Airwaves festival this year, and some lovely shots of my brother (I really love this action shot).

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