Today was definitely a day for being tucked up inside;
the weather without the stout cottage walls, was simply foul. Dark, swollen clouds obscured the horizon & discharged regular, stinging showers of wind-blustered rain onto those foolish enough to venture outside for any length of time.
After finishing the morning milking & all the other chores, I decided to do some serious Internet research (whilst Tony ploughed through paperwork) to find the Ffarm a suitable canine companion at long last. I was amazed at the variety of information available: websites proclaiming the virtues of virtually every breed of dog, great or small; quiet or boisterous; working or loafing; fat or thin. My painstaking research led me to create a shortlist with information regarding dogs that appeared (a) suitably suitable for Ffarm life; & (b) suitably affordable for our frugal pocket!
Then came the tricky process of contacting the vendors of said hounds. Ultimately there appear to be two winners from the whole bewildering pack: an Australian Kelpie puppy, from a breed of herding dogs which are fiercely loyal to their owners which was bred on a working sheep farm near Aberystwyth; & a young Alaskan Malamute owned by a forcibly ‘downsizing’ family from Abertilley, one of the Spitz breeds of dog (bred for sledge-pulling) although he would certainly look the part of a guard dog, being similar in stature to a large wolf which (after the burglary at Pen Bryn or ‘Head of the Hill’) is what we need, after all. Anyway; I’ve arranged for us to visit the Kelpie puppies tomorrow, whilst the future of ‘Blade’ the Malamute hangs in the balance with another potential buyer visiting him in the morning. Admittedly my preference would be to go with Blade, as he is eight months old & so of a suitably threatening ‘guard dog’ size, whilst being of an appropriately pliable age to become an obedient companion (I won’t say ‘a good farm dog’ as he is not bred to have a herding instinct like a Border Collie, for example; I would not expect it of him. But as our sheep are ‘bucket’ trained, do we really need a sheepdog?). Nevertheless, things seldom go the way we intend in this life…..so we’ll just wait & see.