A Dora a day may not keep the doctor away but she definitely keeps the blues away with her antics. That´s the reason I always order a Dora calendar for Herbert as a Christmas present so that even while he´s at work she can still put a smile on his face.
I´ve just finished uploading a selection of this year´s photos. It´s such a difficult task to choose which I like best I always wish there were more than 12 months in the year. While I was uploading them I took some screen shots. Here are just a few which are so typical of Dora I thought I´d share them with you on a dull November day.
January shows Dora in an unusually sad and reflective mood because, for our playful Dora, a day without a ball is a day without sunshine, especially when she´s on holiday in Domburg.
In February she´s still in Domburg and she´s got not just one but two but she´s still not happy because her ball-thrower is more interested in reading his newspaper than playing with her.
It´s so typical of Dora that once she´s finally got her playmate to participate she does her utmost to make sure that he can only do so once...Notice the determined way she holds one ball down with her
paws and the other with her nose while the third is tucked right under her chest.
August shows Dora in a typical awkward situation where she´s got a hold of her ball-on-a-string and has dragged Herbert all the way down the lawn until she´s stopped in her tracks by the prickly bramble bush. (called blackberries by non-Scots) At this point Herbert knows that it´s stalemate and he only has 2 alternatives. Either he lets go of the ball and Dora is propelled backwards into the prickly bushes and then shoots off down the lawn as if she has a bee under her skirt, or he just keeps hold of it. This is not a good strategy as he could miss dinner that night and possibly even breakfast the following morning. Dora can be very determined.
As you can see by November´s photo, once Dora has got her favourite toy she´ll guard it with her life. Don´t be fooled by the butter wouldn´t melt look. Make one false move and the nose goes down and the front paws tighten up and you´ve no chance at all of getting it away from her until she graciously allows you to throw it for her again.
There are times though when a human participant can be essential not just as a ball-thrower but as a ball-retriever. To explain April´s rather strange photo, on her walks Dora has the uncanny knack of finding toys which other dogs have either lost or abandoned. Herbert lets her play with them for a while before putting them out of reach in a tree so that other dogs can also play with them or the original owner can get his/her ball back again. Sometimes when he forgets to bring a ball with him he resorts to picking these strange fruit. The way Dora looks at him in this photo says it all even without the caption.
The following photo is also typical of Dora although it has absolutely nothing to do with her favourite occupation. See it from her point of view. She´ll be lying quite happily on the lawn when I´ll sneak up on her with “that annoying clicking thing.” She´ll immediately turn her head away and put on her long-suffering here-we-go-again look.
As a last resort she´ll get up, give me a withering look and stalk off indignantly to her favourite retreat under the Russian vine where she´ll lie watching me quite convinced that she´s safely in hiding.
I´m so looking forward to the arrival of this year´s calendar but in the meantime I hope that Dora has brightened your day as she always brightens ours.