Friday 24 February 2012
Molly the snaffler
Stones. Champagne cork wire netting. A fuse. A poisonous yew branch. A piece of glass. Plus several unidentifiable objects. What do they all have in common? They were all snaffled by Miss Molly. At nearly 14 weeks now she has become the queen of snafflers over the last couple of weeks causing much stress and anxiety to everyone that walks her. As her snaffling reached a peak I sought experienced help from Wood Green. I was glad to hear I wasn’t alone and that puppy snaffling is quite common, although not always to the professional level that Molly had developed, she was becoming a four legged rubbish hoover and wasn’t far off applying for a job with Huntingdonshire council.
Now every walk I am armed with some of her 3 meals a day and she finds her biscuits on her walk, teaching her to look for food items rather than the local rubbish. I have also ‘cooked up’ her favourite ragga toy in a gravy soup following a genius idea from Sue Ketland, Wood Green’s Training and Behaviour Consultant, attached it to an old washing line and Molly now chases this stinking toy off lead on her walks, a great smelly distraction away from all the debris hidden in the grass ripe for the snaffling. Has caused a few odd looks from passers by; a windswept and muddy lady (a look I seem to have acquired ever since Molly landed), galloping across the local green with poo bags brimming out her back pocket dragging a washing line behind her followed closely by a black and white blur of a puppy I imagine is quite a sight at seven o clock in the morning…
Snaffling aside Molly has been a lot of fun and is growing into a brilliant little dog. We spent five days at Wells-next-the-sea over half term for Molly’s first holiday and she was a superstar. It was with some trepidation we entered the cottage we’d rented; I had a £100 deposit riding on Molly leaving the beautiful soft furnishings alone. The floor length curtains went amazingly untouched, a few vases and ornaments had to be moved out the way of those exploratory puppy teeth but overall Molly was fab – lots of off lead gallops on the beach socialising with friendly dogs from jack russells up to giant schnauzers and we had one tired out pup, who on our first night away slept downstairs on her own for the first time and we didn’t hear a peep out of her.
In fact as well as sleeping downstairs now her toilet training has finally been cracked (following the unforeseen and quite considerable expense of installing doors between my open plan lounge and kitchen to restrict the space she could use), she has mastered walking down the stairs and she starts puppy classes next week at Wood Green. Molly is also now ready to start meeting small groups of children as part of her training in becoming an education dog so we have a busy week ahead – find out next week how Molly is getting on and if her snaffling has started to snaffle out….