Saturday, 24 November 2012

Forest Walk

Angel, Ebene and myself had a fantastic walk in the New Forest last Sunday that had been arranged via the Facebook group "Southern Spinone Walks' and there was around 30 dogs (i think) that turned up with their families for a fun filled day.  We were so lucky as it was the last dry we've had and even though the air was crisp, the sun was glorious.  Everyone had a great time and we all ended up in the Cafe at the Wildlife Centre for coffee and snacks.

Since that day it hasn't stopped flipping raining so I'm signing off for now and going up to the barn to finish building the Ark which we are in dire need of :o(

Jimmys Pup

Well we managed to come home from Wales minus the puppy but the 'being sensible' bit didn't last long :o) After a couple of days Jimmy said he couldn't stop thinking about the pup and he thought that as she was so little it wouldn't make any difference if we had her (what a softy) and it would be a little friend for Dixie.  As luck would have it, Karen had arranged to come here for a visit with Claude the next weekend so she got the call to ask her if she would pick her up for us and bring her here - this she did so now we have another little mouth to feed :o)
Her name is Beanz (aka Beanie/Dangermouse) and although small in size she's got personalty by the bucketload.

Miraculously Dixie is brilliant with her and they are the best of buddies. We were a bit worried that the pup would find Dixie a bit 'too much' as she was a quarter of the size and looked a delicate little flower.  Well the pup had other ideas and puts Dixie well and truly in her place.  Another added bonus is that Dixie leaves the others alone now and is only really interested in Beanz.
Needless to say we don't watch a lot of TV now as we're too busy watching these two little comedians!
The end of this tale is :

Another trip to Wales

At the beginning of the month Jim and I were off on our travels to Wales again.  We went up to see my friend and mentor Francis who I bought my very first German Shepherd from all those years ago and who has given me so much advice and help over the years.  Although some may say (usually Jimmy) that is 'all her fault' that I've ended up with a house full of dogs, I can never thank her enough for sharing her knowledge so freely with me.   She moved to Wales about 4 years ago and although we've chatted on the phone and have met up when she came back to Hampshire for flying visits, we have never seen her place up there.  We went on a 'busman's' holiday really as Jimmy was going to doing some roofing for her and also get a lot of the jobs done that was next to impossible for her to do on her own, but it was a great excuse for a visit and a few days away.

We had such a lovely time and in between drinking copious amounts of tea, laughing and playing with all the different animals she's got, we got loads of jobs done for her which was very satisfying :o)  We even had a visit from Karen and Claude as they only live about an hour away from Francis which was lovely.

The first day we were there I fell in love with a puppy she had but Jimmy gave me strict instructions not  to cuddle it anymore as he knew I would want to bring her home.  For once I actually agreed with him and knew I had to be sensible as we had the 'demon' who is Dixie at home who needed our full attention.  The second day we were there was when Karen and Claude came for a visit and when we all got back from a guided tour of the 'farm' we found Jimmy laying down on the grass in the yard and when he lifted himself up what did we find?? Yep you've guessed it - the puppy :o)  So much for him giving me 'the lecture' eh!!

Baby Donkey with Mum
Jim on a tea break, and his answer to stopping the knats biting his head

Demon Dixie

I've really liked little Cocker Spaniels since I helped a close friend with the whelping and rearing of her little Golden Cocker many years ago.  Poor little girl had a rough time of it and ended up with her milk drying up and us having to hand rear all the pups of which there were 8!  It was all very scary at the time (30 odd years ago) as it was my friends 1st litter and I had only bred 1 litter myself so it was a bit like the blind leading the blind at first but we soon got the 'hang' of it and all the pups thrived with no problems.  Well to cut a long story short I finally am the happy owner of little Dixie a beautiful Black and White :o)
Lacey (11 yrs) and Dixie (11 wks)
I can quite honestly say she is the naughtiest puppy I've ever had - wasn't expecting that!!  When she first arrived she terrorised the Spinones without mercy and the only one who would at least try to play with her was Angel who didn't seem to mind too much about this little monster hanging off her beard, ears, eyebrows or any other dangly bits.  Ebene would have nothing to do with her at all gave her a very wide berth by jumping up onto the highest thing she could find (usually the back of the sofa) where she knew she was safe from the horror dolly :o)  Thankfully she is a bit (not a lot) calmer now and the Dinsdale household is not quite so manic.  For all her naughtiness though, she is ADORABLE and we love her to bits, she's bright as a button and a huge character.

I'll post some more pictures if we can ever keep her still long enough to take any - Bless her :o)

New Arrivals

On Sunday 4th November I got the news that a litter of 10 Spinone babies had been born.  Mum is Sofia (Netis I'll be There) who has a 0:0 hip score and a daughter of my Elsie (Netis Daisy Duke) who also has a 0:0 hip score and the litter is sired by Davidensi's Silver at Sanjika who has a hip score of 3:7 and is also dad to my lovely Angel :o)  Sire and Dam are of course CA Clear Tested.
10 pups came as a bit of a shock to Sofia's family as when she had her scan the vet said she was having 4/5 pups!!  Anyway all went well and Mum and pups are doing fine and growing rapidly.  If this litter may be of interest to you then you can contact the breeders David and Ruth Pinder direct at   I can't wait to see them in a few weeks for some fun and cuddles :o)

Friday, 21 September 2012

Making the most of the weather

Murdoch and Angel
Last week Sue, Jan and myself met once again at the lakes with the dogs and as usual had a laugh a minute:o)  The weather was lovely and so was the food ( Ellie was very miffed about missing out on that, as it was a school day) and all the dogs behaved themselves even when they were joined in the lake by a horse and rider cooling off in 'their' lake !! My old girl 'Lacey' thought she was a puppy again (she's almost 11 years old) so I had to keep putting her on a lead so she would have a rest.  She's never been a very good swimmer but managed to splash around several times soaking me to the skin in the process :o)

Jan took some AWESOME pictures of them all - she really should do it professionally she's so good.

(All pictures below copywrite to Jan Anderson)

Lacey having a 'splashing' time
Ooli and Ebene waiting for the ball to be thrown

Ooli being Ooli :o)

Ooli searching for the lost ball - he found it too!!  Clever lad.


On 10th September we hosted a BBQ for the Barbet Club of Great Britain.  We had a brilliant turn out of people from all over the country accompanied by their Barbets.  I think that there was about 30 dogs in all including lots of puppies from the 2 litters that were born in UK this year.   They all had a fabulous time together as did all us humans :o)   We had a short meeting in the morning where we discussed the KC recognition, show dates in France for next year and arranging a visit to Wales for a weekend of training for the TAN among other things.   We were lucky enough to have John Daniels (animal photographer) attend and he took some great pictures under difficult circumstances - try keeping 30 plus dogs still for longer than a nano second :o)
Wendy did a grooming demonstration in the afternoon and I'm sure that several people came away with lots of tips.
As an added bonus, the event raised around £70 which has been used to start off the welfare fund - great result!!
Hopefully this will become an annual event so we can catch up with everyone and see the progress of the puppies.

There will be a full write up on the days events posted on the Barbet Club of Great Britains website with more pictures.

Jimmy setting up

Dori and Claude helping with the pool cleaning

Karen and me doing what we do best - chatting :o)

Claude and Ena
Ebene with 3 of her pups

Wednesday, 5 September 2012

The Good Life

The time came again this year to say 'goodbye' to the lambs that we have had here for several months - we raise lambs, pigs, chickens and turkeys for our freezer on the smallholding and also grow a lot of fruit and vegetables to go with it.  Our meat animals live in our back field but as you can see in the pictures they come and have a stroll round the front too.   Lots of people say to me "how can you do it??"  I can't say that its easy to do this, but I am a meat eater and would far rather eat the meat from animals that I know have been well cared for and have had a very happy life whilst they are here, never being kept in dirty or cramped conditions as sadly a lot of animals are.  The most important thing to me though, is that they have a stress free 'end' as we have a great guy who comes here and does the deed so they never have to be loaded in a lorry with goodness knows how many others and taken miles to an abattoir.  Some of my friends will never understand and would far rather buy from a supermarket where its all in packets and doesn't look like a lamb, pig etc :o)  They always say how fantastic the taste is though - totally different than shop bought in fact.
 My grand daughter knows what animal all the different meats come from unlike most kids who have no clue!!  To be honest most kids don't even know what the names of the different vegetables are either, sad when you think about it really :o(

Nothing gets wasted as the dogs get all the paunches, tongues and a whole lot more!!  They also get all the bones when they've come back from the butcher - happy dogs indeed :o)

The next job is to get the turkeys big house and run ready as they are quickly outgrowing the one they're in at the moment.  Thats a job for tomorrow :o)


Tuesday, 28 August 2012


Cassie  'Netis Hoi Polloi'

Had this lovely set of pictures sent to me of Cassie who is now 5 months old - time flies!! Really looking forward to seeing her and her litter mates on 9th September at the BBQ.

Sunday, 26 August 2012

In the Swim

As Thursday was a lovely sunny day we decided to go to the New Forest for the dogs to go for a swim again, I'm lucky enough to live only about 20 minutes away from this idyllic spot so I loaded Cenzo and Angel into the car, picked up my granddaughter and off we went.  I was a bit early arriving (not like me at all) so phoned Sue and Jan and said we would meet them by the lakeside as trying to contain Angels excitement was a bit of a challenge :o)   Half an hour later they arrived with Jan's 2 Spins, Ben and Alice and the fun and games began in earnest.  All the dogs had a whale of a time and we did too :o)      As you can see Ellie (my granddaughter) is brilliant with the dogs as she's been used to them from the day she was born.  We always said she would probably bark before she said her first word :o)
Angel my water baby

Angel and Cenzo
Ben and Alice
Ladies that Lunch :o)
Thanks Jan and Sue for another lovely day and for taking some fab pics!!

Off to France

The French Kennel Club arranged for a Barbet Symposium that would run in conjunction with the Water Dog Club Show and invited Barbet breed/owners and anyone else who were interested to attend. It was held in Chatel-Guyon a very pretty part of France but quite a long road trip from UK.  To keep expenses down we decided to go in one vehicle so sadly we didn't have room to take any of our dogs.  Although we were obviously disappointed we all felt it was more important to actually attend the meeting than show the dogs especially as the Club had arranged for English Translators at quite an expense.  Wendy, Julian, Julie and myself left early Thursday morning and took the ferry to Caen and then drove to the meeting place (had an overnight stop half way) for Saturday.  The weather was wonderful and being without dogs meant that we could actually meet and talk with all the others that attended and to be able to sit and watch the judging of the Barbet classes without having to worry - we saw some beautiful Barbet and I was impressed on how they all got on together.   I was lucky enough to be asked by Renate from Switzerland to show her beautiful 8 months old bitch pup called Djili - to say it was love at first sight for me is an understatement :o)  I wanted to bring her home with me big time but sadly Renate wanted to keep her :o(    She got 1st in her class which we were very happy about and she enjoyed every minute of it which was even better.

Djili de la Colline des Vioilettes

 Some of the winners
This is Caya who is Ooli's sire

We had a really good day and enjoyed the Symposium which really reinforced the breeding plan that we have been following here in the UK is the way to carry on - in my opinion the way to go is 'slow and steady' building up a 'healthy' gene pool gradually,  not just importing any dog we can to get the numbers up to satisfy the UK Kennel Club criteria for recognition as another "breeder" has suggested.  
A lovely bonus for the day was that owners of a Spinone pup from my last litter turned up with her and their other two Spins to see me - it was so lovely to see Keith and Irene and to be able to have a cuddle with Hannah (the pup).  They had to drive two and a half hours to get from their home to get to Chatel-Guyon and we were able to spend a couple of hours catching up - sooo grateful for all their effort :o)

Well at the end of a tiring day it was a mad dash back to the hotel where we had to do a quick change and get back to the Gala Dinner also arranged by the Club - it was a really nice way to round off the whole day with lovely food and great company - sorry folks no pictures of me in a frock :o)))
I want to thank Wendy (the supermarket queen) Preston and Julie MacDougal for being an excellent roomie and last but not least , Julien Preston for putting up with us 3 women and our non-stop chatting and for doing all the driving!!   Cant wait for the next trip :o)

Wednesday, 22 August 2012

Busy Busy Busy!!!

I know its been a while since I last up dated the blog but here goes - so much has been going on lately there hasn't been enough hours in the day to sit down and write - plus I have to get Jimmy in a head lock to drag him off Ebay (not easy) so I can use the computer :o)

After we came back from Wales I was lucky enough to be asked by John Daniels (fabulous animal photographer ) to join him and a few friends for lunch and a photo shot.  I've known John for years now and every now and again he phones and asks me if he could take some pics of my gang which he uses for several different things i.e. calendars, greetings cards, advertising etc.  He has taken some amazing pictures over the years and am honoured that he uses one of my lovely Luna when she was young for the lead picture on his website.  He's also well known for doing Carolyn Fry's book on the Italian Spinone and Drontal Plus adverts.  Anyway I digress - I headed off to my friends house with Cenzo and Angel and met the others with their dogs and had a really fun day and a yummy lunch.  I've put a couple of the pictures on here for you to see - I love them!!

 My gentle boy Cenzo

Angel just being Angel :o)