Thursday, 11 February 2016

Elizabeth's Rescues....Part 5...Bilbo

This is the last of the guest posts by my friend Elizabeth about her Turkish rescues.  I hope you have enjoyed the series as much as I have:

And so we come to the last one of our Turkish Family.

After rescuing Frodo we knew his brother was also left behind. Bilbo was bigger but with a hound dog expression. Frodo followed him everywhere which is why we took him first as Frodo had a chance to be his own dog. So we asked for things to be processed. The first rabies tests were unsuccessful so poor BIlbo had another year until the rabies was redone and there was a delivery to the UK.
I managed to get him transported to Carlisle. I did not want to drive again  that long, long journey from Folkestone to Aberdeenshire. Give me rural roads any day - not motorways.
He arrived at a service station outside Carlisle at midnight in August 2014. The driver had managed to have him walking on the lead and toileting on the verges. This was definitely better than Frodo who had not ventured out of his cage.  So we safely drove home and arrived at 6am and I introduced him to his brother in the chalet. 

I went for a few hours sleep and at ten,  crossed the garden to see how the brothers were getting on and saw right into the room. Where were the curtains? 
Oh, they'd had fun together. Such excitement!!! Four curtains shredded on the floor!
I hoped this dog would be braver and come out of the chalet quickly. He did better than Frodo, but was very shy and scared for quite a while. He must have wondered how Frodo had changed so much . The little scary pup had turned into a hooligan but it was good for Bilbo to see him boinging along.

Like Frodo, Bilbo looked for a " safe" place in the chalet- jumping on to the kitchen work surfaces and hiding his head in a corner, if we went in. This was dangerous and he'd jump in panic, sliding across the surfaces so when he was out one day, I closed the kitchen door so his " safe " place became the shower unit where he stayed for a few months. He would sneak in there if anyone came along when he was out in the garden. 

I'd been here before so left him and , sure enough, he came into the main room without any intervention from us, and adopted a lounge chair as his. Then proceeded to tear it to bits!!!
After that he went for the next chair and did the same. Ah well. Willie, the young lab, sleeps with the hobbits ,  but on the sofa. Well sure enough Bilbo started on that so I just cover it all up with blankets and they still use the half torn suite.

One day, as with Frodo, Bilbo asked out for a walk . You just know when they are ready. So , with Charlie our older Lab's help, we set off into our wood, and he so enjoyed it. This was going to be a daily ritual.
At the moment Bilbo is walking every day off the lead into our horses' fields with Charlie, Willie and Zozz. He loves the pool and is very like a Labrador in behaviour.  On my last stay in Turkey Robert had him on the lead and they were getting on well but the horses approached and he panicked and Mum was  nowhere to be found, so he wiggled out of his collar and scarpered into the field and disappeared. I know how little he can make himself if afraid and he had been hiding in the hedges but Robert was frantic. I phoned and told Robert to leave all the gates open, drop one of my jackets at the doorway , and keep the passage into his chalet clear- he'd appear. Of course he did and came home - both very relieved males!!! 

But that made Bilbo suspicious of Robert and we've had a long , long trial of Robert trying to get round him again.  At the moment Bilbo goes willingly with Robert on the lead to the pool,  and I appear  after a half hour and slip his leash so he has some fee time running . Robert sneaks off and Bilbo is confident with me.  It takes forever with him- one step forward , one step back but it's all adding up to a lovely, happy dog.

Initially he was a Scooby Doo dog - all legs everywhere, ears flapping wildly while he ran with his tail whirling all over the place but as he has developed fitness he has a strong, loping run . He also had no spacial awareness and when I called would run to me, almost knocking me over, banging into my legs, side swiping me with his body and this also is improving- which is great as he's a big dog to hit you full on!
So we continue. These dogs bring such joy into our lives but we are fortunate that being retired we have the time  and, being in rural Aberdeenshire, we have the space for them. Not easy dogs - but we have an enormous sense of achievement when we see them blossoming. 

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