Notes from a small dog XXXIX

ORC broch 030You see… I knew it wasn’t my fault! I can’t help it….I’m genetic!

I got a letter that explains everything… and you’ll never guess who it’s from! Well, technically, she got a letter… but it is really for me. It’s from my Dad!

You know the story, yeah? My Mum and Dad were found on some wasteland in Ireland. They don’t know if Mum had left home because she wasn’t happy there, or if they had been thrown out… anyway, Mum was foraging to feed herself while we grew, my brothers and sisters and me, and Dad gallantly stayed with us to take care of his little family too. They were found together.

Mum and Dad

Mum and Dad

I only ever had one picture of them, but Mum is obviously an aristocrat, an English Setter, and Dad just looks like a charming Irish redhead with his wide smile and tail held high. Why anyone would want to abandon two beautiful creatures like Mum and Dad is beyond me. Maybe they ran away to be together…who knows? Like Lady and the Tramp.

Ani day 2 025

There are lots of reasons dogs need a new home. Sometimes it can’t be helped and their people can’t look after them anymore, even though it breaks their hearts. Sometimes people can be cruel and not understand we don’t need much except a bit of loving and looking after. You just don’t know. But there are thousands of animals out there… not just dogs, who need new homes to go to. Anyway, they were found and eventually brought over here to be taken care of by Many Tears Animal Rescue.

That’s where my part of the story begins.

IMGP0213We were fostered by a lovely lady with a garden and a river and children to play with. I remember Mum, just a bit; pretty, delicate and silky, and all warm and cuddly. The lady had called me Cash and my picture said I was a boy. She came to see us with her boy, and I chose them. My brother wanted her too… he looked like my Dad, all red and foxy… but I’d made my mind up and chose her. I think she has a thing about black dogs…

IMGP1330But I didn’t see Dad after that. I’ve often wondered about him and hoped he found his heart’s home too.

Well, it seems he did! Seems he was wondering about us too as we passed our third birthday. And his human wrote to mine for him. The lady sent the letter to Many Tears and they sent it out to all his puppies. And it has his pictures and everything! And he is sooo handsome! I can even get in touch with him… and he’s on Facebook! So I’m putting some old pictures on here today, just in case he looks….

P1000309Apart from the colour (and don’t mention it to her please… you know what she’s like with hair dye..) I look a lot like my Dad. More shapely, like Mum, especially when she has forced me into the torture chamber bath. It seems I take after him in other things too. ‘Pparently he likes hoofing all his toys out of the toybox too. And likes tennis balls. And chasing things. And he’s not just a retriever either. He’s a Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever!

anigarden 026No, she hadn’t heard of them either but she looked a bit worried when she looked them up. She rolled her eyes and started ticking things off… intelligent, alert, high energy…yep. Gentle with babies and small things… yep… strong retrieving drive, intense birdiness… oh yes! The article even mentions my singing… she can’t even blame me for that! It says too that Tollers chase things like cats and anything else that looks like fun…

P1020168Honest, it is like a ‘get out of jail free’ card. She pounced on the bit about the strong will and the liking being in control. She says she can relate to that. And she glossed over the bit that says Tollers are smarter than the average person too.

So what with Mum being a Setter… another vocal bird-dog with a mind of their own and loads of energy…and Dad being a Toller, she just sighed and said, ‘Must be genetic then.’

sue 050Which I think means I’m off the hook for the hole in the flower bed….Though she does seem to be getting my shampoo and towels ready… Hmmm…Ani winks

I might go hide under the table.

Catch you later,
Much love,
Ani xxx

About Sue Vincent

Sue Vincent is a Yorkshire-born writer and one of the Directors of The Silent Eye, a modern Mystery School. She has written a number of books, both alone and with Stuart France, exploring ancient myths, the mysterious landscape of Albion and the inner journey of the soul. She is owned by a small dog who also blogs. Follow her at and on Twitter @SCVincent Find her books on Goodreads and follow her on Amazon worldwide to find out about new releases and offers. Email:
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19 Responses to Notes from a small dog XXXIX

  1. alienorajt says:

    Well well, Ani, you have got an interesting family! Lovely photos of your mum and dad – and very sweet ones of you! xxx


  2. kanzensakura says:

    Well, I think this is wonderful you connected with your dad! And you are right, it is genetic and I think you should be given a place in the garden for hole digging. It is important. When I was a little ‘un, I was big on hole digging. Our dog Sandy used to help me a lot. We’d both get all grubby and have to be put in the torture chamber.


    • Sue Vincent says:

      She doesn’t mind toooo much… ‘cept when I dig the apple tree up… or bite the strawberries off to play…
      But if she’s planning on doing the shampooey stuff I’m staying under the table. ‘S funny… she used to have a dog called Sandy when she was little too!
      Much love, Ani xxx


  3. Morgan says:

    She looks so happy 🙂 What a Beautiful Family! and I Love love love the snoozin’ photo 🙂 Wonderful Post!!


  4. Ani, I just love when you blog! ❤


  5. ksbeth says:

    ah, what a sweet story, ani. )


  6. What a wonderful story. Nice when families can catch up and humans can help 🙂


  7. Ani … It’s always lovely to get in touch with your roots. Now I can see where you got your looks AND your smarts from. 😉


    • Sue Vincent says:

      I kept telling her, Judy… and now she can see… not my fault at all that I’m smarter than the average hobbit… I’m sure that’s what it said… 😉
      Much love, Ani xxx


  8. sarah finn says:

    Hello Ani, my boy is your dad’s best friend and I have to say you are the spitting image of him (apart from your colour) He is a very handsome man – you definitely have his genes as you are a beautiful young lady. Lovely to see some pics of you. Much love, Sarah + Gilbert (daddies bestie) xx


    • Sue Vincent says:

      Hi Gilbert! You are the black boy on my Dad’s Facebook page! I’ve seen your picture!

      I can see how handsome he is… and she says I look a lot like him too… ‘cept when I’m wet, then I go all setter shaped like Mum.

      It’s really, really nice to see who my Dad is. She says I have his smile… and that’s cool. I may have inherited a bit more than that though 😛

      Much love,
      Ani xx


  9. How lovely to hear from your mum and dad Ani! They look beautiful and of course they have passed on some wonderful genes if you’re anything to go off! I’ve never heard of the Retriever breed your dad is…seems Wolfies learn something new every day! 😉


    • Sue Vincent says:

      It is awesome to hear from them!
      I didn’t know my Dad was one of those either till the letter came… Maybe there will be more pictures… Dad is gorgeous, and Mum’s just beautiful! 🙂


  10. Pingback: Notes from a small dog XXXX | Daily Echo

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