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Toby at four months

Toby has been here for nine weeks. He has spent half of his life with us, and his memories of his mum and his seven litter-mates must be fading. Meantime his impact on our lives has been immense. He is better known in Duddingston village than we are. Workmen from Scottish Water greet him by name and kind neighbours take him for walks and to their houses. This morning he and I were walking in Holyrood Park and a whole coachload of tourists made a fuss of him. The bold Toby, who likes buses, tried to board the coach to be with his fans.

His impact on house and garden has been negative, to say the least: furniture and plants have been chewed, our belongings have been scattered and hidden and Toby stuff is everywhere. This morning, for the first time, his reach extended to the keyboard of my iMac and one casual swipe of his huge front paw invoked features I had never seen before. Nothing that dangles, such as a towel or teacloth, can be kept at a convenient height. We can't keep books in normal-height bookshelves, which Toby has taken over for his toy library:

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Despite our efforts to socialise him, he lacks respect for older dogs and clambers on and pesters them. Here is a very forbearing golden retriever called Ruby, putting up with more than he should have to:

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The TV ads never show you what puppies really do to Andrex, but Toby can trash a whole packet in seconds. Then he moves on to kitchen paper:

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However, just occasionally he will chew something harmless, like a stick, and in this relaxed pose you can see just how much he has grown, still gaining over 1 kg each week. And although there have been many moments of frustration, since he took over my life I have worked less, got out more (short, chaotic walks), spoken to more people (with and without dogs) and laughed more.

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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on August 24, 2014 2:11 PM.

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