As you know when we popped over to see our friends over at CAESSR earlier this month we brought back an extra set of paws! Willow has been with us now for a fortnight although it feels like she’s always been a part of the family. She settled in and bonded in with Biz and Chewy straight away spending her first night asleep on the bed with them and us. We’ve been introducing her to all our favourite haunts and yesterday I took Willow and Chewy up to the Moss Wood loop following the old Runcorn Canal at Moore.
Biz’s arthritis was playing up so I left her snuggled up at home with her mum (too much running like a loon with her brother and sister the day before!). After what has been one of the wettest starts to spring I can remember I was hoping that the northern part of Moore would be a bit dryer than the rest of the reserve but as I was to discover many, many times nothing could be further from the truth, Over the last few months Chewy has been learning how to be a dog from his big sister and its been amazing how many of her mannerisms he’s adopted. Little did we realise that Willow had a few tricks to teach him as well.
A running joke in our household ever since Chewy moved in is that we appear to have the world’s only hydrophobic spaniel. I was also intrigued to see how Willow would react to puddles and mud in general joking with Cat that we might have a spaniel who isn’t terrified of water.
Within seconds of getting out the car Willow had spotted a pigeon, dove nose first through the fence and into a thicket of mud and brambles. Having flushed said winged menace out she then ran straight back through the bog before splooshing headlong into the deepest puddle to reach me to see what I thought of her epic bit of spanielery. Clearly, Willow despite those angelic looks is not a puppa to be intimidated by water, mud, brambles or general outdoorsy stuff in general.
By the time we’d made it round to the side where the old Runcorn canal runs alongside the path she’d been haring up and down and for the first time ever Chewy was starting to spaniel off into the undergrowth. He clearly had no idea why he was doing it – unlike his little sister the concept of following a scent is currently a foreign one. When she boinged over the side of the path down to the edge of the canal he seemed a little confused about what she was up to. She sniffed the water and decided maybe it wasn’t time to give it a try which due to her small size meant I had to give her a hand getting back up to the path.
A few minutes later after some more mad running with her big brother she launched off the path and landed in the old canal with a sploosh. Much to my and Chewy’s amazement she then started swimming in circles with her ears acting as floats followed by promptly hopping out of the big blue wet thing and running in circles around us. She then yapped at her brother and dove in again. Incredibly Chewy followed! The first time he’s voluntarily gone into water. To say I was an extremely proud dog dad is something of an understatement. Willow has not only been teaching Chewy to dog and spaniel – but that the wet stuff is great fun especially if dad forgot to pack the doggo towels in the car ….
Mark 20th March 2020