12 October 2011


I am a bit puzzled. I was out walking the dog (the Red Setter) the other day and because of the way the road to the park is laid out, I was walking with the flow of the traffic (obviously the dog and I were on the path). He does have a habit of misbehaving sometimes because he likes to get his own way and I don't allow him to. It's like handling a small horse. He prefers to try and charge on ahead and because I won't let him, he will sometimes fling himself around on the end of the lead, rear up and generally be a pain. He's a lot better now as he has got past the bolshy adolescent stage.

I was walking him to the park the other day and for a change, he was behaving pretty well. No pulling or arsing about and generally just being a good boy. The next thing I know I have a police car stop at the side of me and one of the policemen wave to me to stop me (I had my mp3 player on). I stop and walk over to the car wondering what on earth they have stopped me for and ask if everything is okay.

The policeman in the passenger seat replied and said "Everything's fine. We were just wondering if you were all right with him?"

I said everything was fine and that the dog was fine too.

The policeman in the driving seat then asks "You're not having any trouble then?"

At this point I am beginning to get mightily confused so just say that as he was walking fine on his lead and was behaving, did it honestly look like I was struggling?

It then occurs to me that maybe they think I have stolen him so I ask them if that is the case and get the reply from both "No, no not at all. We see you out a lot with him and just wanted to make sure you were alright and it looks like you are so we'll make a move now. Enjoy your walk".

After thanking them and saying bye they left and that was that.

I am still mightily puzzled as to why they stopped though. They were both really nice and pleasant (and truth be told not bad to look at either!) so it wasn't annoying, just a bit strange.

The dog embarrassed me by trying to climb in to their police car though. He decided that he'd make the most of saying hello and planted both his front paws on the passenger door.
They drove off with two muddy pawprints on their passenger door *blush*.


JR said...

Sounds like you have a bit of a wing-dog there. He get's the copper's attention allowing you to strike up a conversation, "Oh officer I'm terribly sorry about my dog but he his a good judge of character" and such like.

Am very jealous. Would love a dog but sadly my landlord would go into meltdown and not too sure the flatmates would appreciate it.

The question is, given your self-confessed stature (and the fact that setters are quite big), who walks who?

Girl*Next*Door said...

JR, a wing-dog, great expression!

My landlord is good. Officially the Setter isn't mine but my mum's so lives there but I walk him and do a lot with him so I see him as 'mine'. My landlord would allow me to have a dog but the building is on a leasehold (I think) and no dogs or cats are allowed.

As for my stature and walking him. I have two pet-hates in this world; badly behaved children and badly behaved animals. My horse has on occasion tried to barge me out of the way and be bolshy and has been put in her place and the same goes for Harley (the Setter). He acts up and totally takes the mickey ouit of everyone else but is well behaved with me. He will sit, wait, come back to call and won't pull with me but walks all over everyone else. It's been a battle of wills and I made sure I came out the winner.

It's been hard work but it's paid off and I get a lot of positive comments on his behaviour as they are notoriously difficult to train as they have the attention span of a hyperactive gnat! He comes up to around my mid-thigh but is a very good boy in general, he just trots along by my side as I am quite a fast walker for someone so short!

The only issue we have is when he is naughty, he knows that all he has to do is turn on his soulful gaze and I am putty in his paws again :-D. I love him and would no not have any other breed apart from a Red Setter as they are such fab dogs. All the personality and character with the loyal and soft affectionate side. He does tend to think he is a lapdog though which caues problems when he tries to reverse on to my lap :-D.

cogidubnus said...

Personally I always favoured Labradors...I've had a succession of them down the years, until earlier in the year, when the missus introduced a Jack Russell puppy (he's still only seven or eight months old now)...tell you something...small dog but bags of character...and perhaps we've been lucky, but he's very amiable towards our (9) cats and so far displays no signs whatever of bad temperament...

JR said...

GND, please promise me the term, "pet hate" wasn't an intentional pun?

I've heard Setters can be tricky to train. A former colleague had one who she variously referred to as, "dopey bugger" when he was behaving and, "that f**king stupid beast" when he wasn't! The lap dog could be interesting.

I too am a bit of a labrador fan. We share several traits; big, hairy, affectionate, loyal, eager to please and with a keen sense of fun. In fact the only real difference I can think of is that lab's chase rabbits, I chase pints!

Girl*Next*Door said...

Cogs, to be totally honest I am a fan of gun dogs full stop but Harley tops them all. You'd have to meet him to fully appreciate what I mean.

I do like JRs too but am wary of them as I have met so many snappy ones that have been spoiled and none have matched up to the absolute sweetheart of a JR I met when I was younger.
I do love the sound of your JR though, I may come and steal him :-D.

JR, no it wasn't an intentional pun and I am thoroughly ashamed for coming out with such a pun and not realising at the time! :-O

They are very tricky. They are sharp and intelligent dogs and you have to have your wits about you with them. They are also very cunning and sly and will find any which way to distract you in order to steal food (they are terrible thieves) so all that coupled with the hyperactivity and the scattiness makes them a challenge indeed but I am proud to have got him to the level of behaviour where I am frequently compimented on how good and well behaved he is for a Setter. It's been a battle of wills and a couple of times I've felt at the end of my tether but one look from him, or one cuddle or the few times he's been laid across my feet and then curled his head around my ankle, turning himself in to a canine ankle cuff has melted my heart and all is forgiven. The problem is, he knows this and attempts to use it to his advantage but he is my boy and can rarely do wrong in my eyes. However, that is not to say he isn't disciplined when he needs it. We both know where the line lays and as he is getting older, he is showing it more and more respect. I would not advise them to a novice dog owner that is for sure. They are a breed of their own and unlike any other dog I have come across. They are beautiful and unique and have such full characters they do become 'personalities' in their own right :o)
Can you tell I am a devotee of them? :-P :-D.

Labs are lovely as are Retrievers and I am laughing at the chasing rabbits V chasing pints comment! So true of most :-D.

JR said...

GND, if it's any consolation, I'm not terribly proud of pointing out a joke worthy of my dad. I thought I would have a few more years before cracking those sorts of jokes.

It does sound like you're rather smitten with setters; either that or you're on a substantial retainer from a setter breeder. How did you decide to first get them or have your family always had them?


p.s. did you like the video?

Girl*Next*Door said...

JR, so you should feel ashamed! :-D

I wish I was on a retainer but I'm not, I am just a bit of a glutton for punishment. My family have always had dogs but not always Setters. This is the first one we've had ourselves and he hasn't disappointed.

I did watch the video. Fantastic! Are they the group that were on X-factor or Britain's Got Talent? If not there was a group very similar to them on there not so long ago (yes I do watch both of those shows. I am suitably ashamed of it :-P).

JR said...

GND, I hang my head at such puns. I'm sure they could be worse but I've yet to work out how.

Not sure if the guys are the ones from X-factor et al. I don't share your expertise so afraid I'm in the dark. I salute your bravery admitting your viewing though!