Our Dogs – Oscar and Jenson
I have been asked by a few people whether we brought our dogs with us when we moved here so I thought I would write a post about the two little monsters.
Actually, we didn’t have a dog in the UK for the last 6 years we were there as our previous dog, the still very much-missed Boogie, died of a bad heart in 2007 at the age of 13. That was just a few months after my mother died and as she used be our dog sitter when we went racing, or on holiday, we did not get another.
It was always on the cards that once we moved here we would get another dog, but we didn’t plan on getting one so soon after our arrival. Within a few weeks Sue started volunteering at the local Perrera, which is the council run dog pound. Before the volunteers became involved the dogs were given, at best, very basic care and attention. Before the volunteers became involved, the dogs got three weeks in the pound, with little or no effort to find new homes for them, before they were put down. Fuerteventura Dog Rescue, which is the organisation the volunteers work through, started going in a few times to clean out cages, give the dogs treats, bath them, let them run and play in the exercise area and also started to set up a network of foster carers to get them out of the pound before they were put down. They have since also developed a network in other countries where some of the dogs are re-homed.
Anyway, the first week Sue volunteered a pathetic black and white pointer cross, about a year old, came in that had been found as a stray in Lajares. The following week he was still there and then again the next week. The pound was full at that time, with many dogs being held two to a cage, so some were to be put down, including this one. Despite the fact that at that time we were living in our apartment, which was hardly suitable for a dog, we decided that we would foster him to save his life. So on 1st April 2013, yes April Fools’ Day, we picked him up.
He remained a “foster” dog with us for such a long time. It was all of 24 hours before he won us over and he became our adopted dog. It was Sue’s turn to name our next dog so she chose Oscar.
Actually, he is the first male dog I have ever had which I wasn’t too sure about as my previous dogs had all been wonderful females. I needed have worried though as he is a good dog who loves cuddles. He gets far too spoilt really. That doesn’t stop him from being a bit of a whiner, for absolutely no reason. We keep telling him how lucky he is but that doesn’t seem to matter to him.
We lived in the apartment with him for just over 5 months before we bought this house which meant he had a nice garden to play in. In the apartment I seemed to do very little else but take him for a walk. We used to go out 6-8 times a day, which was a bit wearing, and that was why it was never our plan to get one before we bought a house.
Funnily though, when we had been in the house for 4 or 5 days, I suddenly realised that I hadn’t taken him for a walk since we moved in, and he hadn’t nagged to go for one either. I asked him “Oscar, do you want to go for a walk?” and he just looked at me with an expression which said “Well if you want but I’m not bothered now I have a garden.” We go for a a nice long walk every day though.
It was never our intention to have two dogs. I have only ever had one dog at a time in the past and felt that I didn’t really want to divide my love and attention between two. Sue felt the same way. However, a friend of ours, Mauro, who has two dogs told us that having two was much less work than one as they keep each other amused. We still weren’t convinced and in fact we will never forgive him for that particular piece of wisdom!
I was just looking through Facebook one afternoon when I came across a photo of a 3-month-old long-haired Jack Russell on the Fuerteventura Dog Rescue page. He had only been with his family for a few months and they were already wanting to get rid of him.
Anyway, I showed the photo to Sue, simply because he looked so cute, not with adopting him in mind at all. I said “Look at this little scrap looking for a home” and she immediately said “Can we have him?” I thought she was joking, but she wasn’t, so we made arrangements to see him and the rest is history. He was actually called Toby at that time, but didn’t know that, so I decided to rename him Jenson.
Generally our dogs get on very well together. Oscar is a very tolerant dog anyway so that was never really going to be an issue. But there are times when they get rather too loud and tear around the house chasing each other. Occasionally it gets a bit bad-tempered but not too often. Jenson also has not grown out of the destructive phase yet.
If anyone ever says to you that having two dogs is less work that one beat them around the head with a baseball bat and tell them they are talking rubbish. Two dogs are more than twice the work and aggravation!
We will DEFINITELY not be having any more dogs.