Chapter Four

Abandonment. And the secret of ‘le coucher de splurge’

Abandoned. I was abandoned, make no mistake, to the kennels. In Swiss French, that is translated as Chenils. Here they say, callously, ‘we will put the dog to the kennels’. In French it is ‘nous allons metre le chien au chenil’. It sounds so much more graceful and kind, even generous. ‘Ah, bientot, les chiens vont aux vacancies. Sacre bleu. Jings. Help ma boab’.

See, the kennel’s fine, actually, if wasn’t for the other dogs. And you have to make an effort and mix, don’t you? No point in skulking in the corner of the yard while some Jacques Rousseaux throws its weight around. I mean, I am after all a giant breed. I will not be bullied by a Jacques Rousseaux. or worse, a Chiuahuahua. You may laugh but these tiny canines with the crazy name can be particularly annoying to one of my girth. And the scandal when one of them gets tangled with underbelly hair and then is crushed to death in an unfortunate lying down incident - what we in Switzerland call un ‘couchere de splodge’ - can cause brief unhappiness in the chenil context. 

I should say that the coucher de splurge is a good way of getting rid of cats, an unhappy genre of pet I may return to on another occasion. Oh, one may say, I did not detect that slight squirming unevenness in the chair, or bed, or indeed floor. The feline does not suffer, much, and is generally only slightly misshapen. It is, however, asphyxiated and out of one’s life. Usually to the secret delight of at least one of your human companions.

Jacques Rousseaux and Chihuahuahuas are really honorary cats, so I do not waste much time or sympathy on them if there any inexplicable crushing happens to, ah, happen. Alas, I cannot engineer such a fate for the evil but exceptionally strong little tyke Dexter, who was not abandoned to the chenils. oh no. Yes, I am replete with resentment! He was handed back to his former owner for a month of pampering. I wish to say no more about him other than that he has returned and seems if anything, more annoying and disrespectful. 

Anyway, tout a fait, I am treated well in les chenils, decent food, and once the Jacques Rousseaux and Chihuahuahuahuas are dealt with, I am shown a degree of respect  the egregious Dexter fails to provide. So yes, I was abandoned, but now I am back in the bosom of the human family. Alors, iti s a bosom that would be far, far superior did it not conceal that viper in four legged form, the vicious Dexter. But pah! what can one do?

Did I miss him? Perhaps a little.

The near-death of Dexter (mint-flavoured)

A near death experience. What was that like? It was brilliant!
Here’s what happened. The human were guilty, remorseful, full of shame for leaving me behind while they went away cavorting in Crete, or one of those other Costa Del kind of places. Aye, and  I bet they felt even worse when the saw all those dogs running about wild over there, suppurating with sores and fed on disused tourist kebabs and buckets of taramsolata. I know what it’s like. When I was in the Ayrshire Home for Strays and Abandoned Vicious Weapon Dogs I met Stavros the Greek Whippet/Great Dane/Pitbull cross. He’d been rescued from Crete by a pair of sentimental tourists he’d whimpered at, gone through the full vaccination, microchip, quarantine thing, and then both his humans snuffed it in a ghastly botulism accident. Takeaway Mackerel pate, apparently. Stavros was well pissed off, I can tell you. I think he ended up in a Tibetan Buddhist Commune as some kind of meditational aid. Funny old life, eh?

Anyway, as I say, my humans were clearly feeling bad about leaving me, even though I was having a fine time with my former owner, being coddled, cuddled and generall spoilt. She even let me eat an entire - I thin kit’s called a onesie, or most of it. And the humans were probably feeling worse  about the four legged carpet, AKA Rug, who was in proper kennels. Not that they bought her anything as a present. No, it was only me got the mint-flavoured chewy nylon ring thing.

No, I ask you, what do you think you’re meant to do with a mint flavoured chewy nylon ring thing? Chew it, of course!. Into bits. And then swallow the bits. I love mint! Imperials are best, but black and white striped balls are good, even if they remind me of my Invisible Balls, which were one colour, actually, but just as good for licking. Though not crunching.

So, anyway, where was I? Yes, so that was that, and you know that mint is good for the digestion, don’t you? I’d also just eaten a bowl of Chudley’s Working Crunch (which a sheep dog once assured is designed to taste exactly like sheep poo, and I can tell you that just shows the limited insight of a sheepdog.  It actually tastes more like a good peat compost). And then half a deflated leather football, which is natural and good roughage.

But it turns out the mint flavoured chewy nylon ring thing was not meant to be swallowed after all! Disaster, Blockage, choking, vomiting and only partial passing through the digestive tract! My whole life swam before me like a dream. But that only took three or four minutes, and I had to spend the rest of the night throwing up and defaecating all over the humans’ bedroom.

Which was absolutely brilliant! How often do you get the chance to do that and still be stroked and cried over and talked about in words like ‘call Victoria the Alternative Spell-casting vet! I don’t care if it costs thousands of pounds! Dex must live!’ When the final bits of green nylon erupted from both ends about 4.00am, I was almost sorry! 

Well, almost...

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