The Official Website  for Carol Margaret Tetlow

The Secret Diaries of Hector and Rufus February 2015

February 1st 2014

The secret diary of Dr Hector and Dr Rufus, consultants in charge of Lamb Hill Hospital. 'We specialise in the most challenging cases'

Welcome to grand rounds. We would like to take this opportunity to present some of the interesting cases we have under our care at the moment.

Patient A - 11 year old yellow labrador with very cold paws following a walk on the moors above Haworth yesterday where the snow drifts were so deep we jumped into them and disappeared!

Diagnosis- doesn't like winter

Treatment -two pairs of socks and some biscuits

Patient B -5 year old black labrador who has a warty lump on his side. He's had this for a long time and the vet said leave it but it's suddenly quadrupled in size and is all red and oozy.

Diagnosis -ooooh- er. We're a bit worried

Treatment -off to the vet tomorrow

Patient C -lovely female peep of indeterminate age who, while practising her tennis against the wall of the house today had a sudden pain in her right buttock and went 'ow'.

Diagnosis -complete dislocation of pelvis and shouldn't be playing tennis when she could be walking us

Treatment -large glass of wine and us sitting on her knee.

Patient D -sometimes scary male peep, over 21 years, struggling to speak.

Diagnosis -he's a little horse (see photo)!!!!!!!

Treatment -keep drip feeding the sherry.

Well, it's a good job we're fit and well. We loved the snow yesterday. It was a bit of a journey but we passed the time seeing who could perform the most spectacular gaseous emission from their bottoms! Rufus won! The peeps weren't pleased and it was very cold with the windows open as we drove along!

Time to go on our ward round now and give out the tablets......

Love and licks H&R xxxxxxx       

February 2nd at 15.46

The secret diary of Hector and Rufus..........all worried

Ben has been to the vet this morning about his lump. He has to be admitted tomorrow morning first thing to have the lump removed. Worse still he is on nil by mouth from 1800 this evening which means the likelihood is we will be too! Our beds will be searched and all those gravy bones we've been saving for a rainy day will be confiscated (actually there aren't any -whoever heard of a labrador saving a biscuit?).

So the atmosphere is decidedly subdued here this afternoon as we ponder on what tomorrow will bring. Because we are such understanding dogs we have been very well behaved and only thrown all the cushions off the sofa three times, taken the throws into another room (one in the bedroom, one in the lounge, one in the bathroom- you never know when you might need one), raided the biscuit tin that was left too close to the edge of the worktop, perfected our six foot leap from one chair to another, chased Mr Kipling relentlessly, eaten his dinner, helped the nice man who is taking down a fence in the garden until he got fed up with us and we were told to come in and killed a parcel that arrived that we thought looked decidedly suspicious.

We're planning a little snooze next for maybe as long as 30 seconds, just to get our wind back. We're very good with wind (see yesterday's blog) and we would hate to miss any fun.

Please all keep hooves, paws, claws, flippers, fins, trotters and fingers crossed for Ben tomorrow and we will let you know how he gets's not the best photo of his juicy lump but we didn't want anyone to faint.

Love and licks H&R xxxxxxx   

February 3rd at 17.55

The secret diary of Hector and Rufus..........shhhhh! the patient is sleeping

Well, it's been a funny old day. We got up and salivated at the thought of breakfast only to find the female peep taking Ben out on his own. She came back a bit watery-eyed and said that he had been shaking a lot and hadn't wanted to be left on his own at the vets. We don't blame him. Our bottoms still tingle at the thought of what examination we had done when we were just puppies.

We went for a walk on our own, with the male peep but it wasn't the same.

The house seemed very quiet......

Then the female peep went to fetch him and this poor sleepy shadow of Ben wobbled into the house.

Good news though -hopefully no lampshade needed. Just a T-shirt, which he definitely needs at the moment as he's still shaking. He's had some convalescent diet for tea and (to our horror) ate it all up in a trice, which is a shame as we were hoping for extra portions. He's cuddling with the female peep now which we will allow, just this once.

We'd perfected a new game called singing crocodiles which we played to try to cheer him up but it didn't really work, but he has eaten a gravy bone, v-e-r-y slowly.

He has the sutures out in 10 days and ha ha ha has to keep quiet until then!!!!!! We don't think we can help with that one!

We're being very good -so good that if anyone sends grapes, gravy bones, even just gravy, we will taste it first to make sure it's suitable for those convalescing.

Thank you everyone for helping us through this troubled time.

Extra love and licks H&R xxxxx      

February 4th at 18.26

The secret diary of Hector and Rufus........happy and sad

Thank you to everyone for their concern and we are pleased to report that the patient had a comfortable night until 0500 when he needed a wee and some gravy bones. He stayed in the house! We were all on our own in the haunted kennel and very scared. The wind whipped around the corners, hail lashed against the windows and lightning struck the roof!

Today- the patient has eaten well, rested well, all bodily functions performing normally and was only mildly miffed when we went for a walk without him! He has taken his shirt off now as 1) he is ignoring his wound 2) we are ignoring his wound and 3) he feels like a wuss with it on.

He has been very clingy though and won't leave the female peep alone, which means we can't get to her......grrrrr.

Sadly we have had to turn our attentions to the male peep who has been felled by another virus and is languishing on the sofa watching old episodes of Lovejoy and working his way through five miles of kitchen roll. He is hot enough to fry food on so we're thinking bacon sandwiches later on.

He's requested a light supper of prawn cocktail with granary bread, lemon sole goujons, roast beef, Yorkshire puddings, roast potatoes and veg, followed by sticky toffee pudding and ice cream and cheese and biscuits.

He is getting a small piece of fish ( but doesn't know this yet)

Hopefully, one day, everyone will be fit and well, like us.

Love and licks H&R xxxxxx   

February 6th at 16.50

The secret diary of Hector and Rufus......................feeling slippery

The female peep made a grave mistake yesterday. She won't do that again. Busy looking after the coryzal male peep (length of kitchen roll used now exceeds ten miles, number of Potters catarrh pastilles consumed 143, number of Tunes crunched 831, number of Fishermans friends sucked 1,658, number of teeth left zero) she spent the day rushing this way and that and did not take us for a proper walk! We note that she found time for her tennis lesson -harrumph.

So it was important that she was taught a different sort of lesson so, while she was chatting on the phone in the evening we thought we would re-design her slipper, ready for the better weather which must surely be round the corner.

Ooops! she wasn't very pleased and has taken £7 from our savings (we were saving for our tour of France, Devon and Lancashire) to buy some new slippers in the sale at Sainsburys. Would you believe they have ears, eyes and noses and are supposed to look like dogs? Well, let's put it this way, they won't look like dogs for long. Rufus is going to eat them this evening while the female peep is at school with Hector and the male peep is watching the rugby through his rheumy eyes and will be oblivious to any naughtiness. So long as nobody tells Ms Vi Merana......

Ben is doing well. He has a clean t-shirt on today in a fetching shade of bluebell. He came with us on a walk but had to stay on the lead, so we ran around making sure he noticed what a fab time we were having. Stitches out in a week's time. All four of them.....

The female peep has to get back to work now, get the donkeys in, make the male peep's tea (he only wants seven courses tonight) and then find Hector and go to school.

More soon!

Love and licks H&R xxxxx   

February at 17.30

The secret diary of Hector and Rufus...........feeling squeamish

Those of a nervous disposition look away now! The female peep (aka chief medical officer at Lamb Hill) has decided that Ben's wound will benefit from some air getting to it. She is very pleased with its progress but distressed at the speed Ben is working his way through her collection of t- shirts.

Hector had a good time at school last night on his own, though initially was a bit giddy when he caught sight of a new pupil - a very young yellow lab called Bailey. One growl from Ms Vi Merana (who gave Hector a letter to bring home saying that watching the rugby wasn't a good enough excuse to miss school) and he soon started to behave and was the best black labrador there, yet again* He had to spend a large part of the class sitting next to the hungry German shepherd dog, who was drooling with excitement at the thought of eating the chihuahua (a tiny snack- barely a mouthful). Matters were not helped by Hector's mistaking the German shepherd's tail for a squirrel and pouncing on it.

Cripes! Let's just say he was lucky to avoid a trip to A&E.

There must have been something in the water because one owner was bitten by her dog and had to be helped to a chair ( the dog, that is, not the owner- she was left bleeding on the floor- gives you an example of where Ms Vi Merana's priorities lie.

Vi had sausages for everyone but they tasted a little bit different this week and it was noted that the sausage dog was not present ..............surely not.

Meanwhile in the ward down the corridor, the poor male peep continues to struggle- fever, looks grim, coughing, shivering, hiding under a knitted patchwork blanket and ......refusing food......voice is getting weaker......

It's getting a bit worrying now.

Tomorrow, some photos of us. You peeps and four legged friends need cheering up. Lucky for us, we're always happy!

Love and licks H&R xxxxxx

*i feel compelled to tell you Hector was the only black labrador in the class......signed Rufus     

February 8th at 18:15 ·

The secret diary of Hector and Rufus......................feeling lively

Today we are going to gloss over the medical details -enough of them in the last few days. Suffice it to say that the male peep is unchanged and still off his food and Ben is desperate to play with us on walks, rather than be on the lead. Today's t-shirt is a little primrose number with a periwinkle blue belt. He likes the strappy look and indeed the female peep says the straps are very useful for hooking onto the collar, so that he doesn't have any wardrobe malfunctions and expose himself.

We promised to cheer you all up today and do we ever let you down?

Q- What do you get if you cross a dog with a jelly?

A- collie-wobbles!

Q- what sort of dog loves having a bath (not us!)?

A- a shampoodle!

Q- What do you get if you cross Jester with a telephone?

A- a golden receiver!

Q- What happens when it rains cats and dogs?

A- there are lots of poodles to splash in!

Q- What do you call a dog who does magic tricks?

A- a labracadabrador!

Q- what do you give a dog with a cough?

A- some Ben-ylin!

How we laughed! Hope you do too.....

We've been busy helping this afternoon. The female peep is run off her feet trying to keep everything running smoothly, despite the fact that she is still a contender for the accolade of world repository for green catarrh. So, we love to help -we hardly need to be asked! We just cannot understand why she was upset when we amused ourselves by doing some artwork on the sofa with our muddy paws and then washed them in our water bowl -just like we did when we were puppies. Then we barked and barked and growled and had a fight, played crocodiles, refused to sit still for photos and ripped up the bit of the paper that has the sudoku and crossword in it. What's not to like?

Time to help bring the donkeys in now! Yum yum.

Love and licks H&Rxxxxxxxxx    

February 10th at 18.45

The secret diary of Hector and Rufus......................nurses, doctors, detectives- who said men can't multitask?

Sorry we didn't write yesterday but it was full on with looking after the male peep and helping the female peep. We were fetching and carrying, testing food, making a mess, sitting serenely by the patient (watching Last of the Summer Wine yesterday- who ever knew quite so many episodes were produced....) and of course all of this is extra difficult when you're wearing a nurse's uniform- the skirt gets tangled around our paws.

On our walk yesterday, naughty Ben went swimming with his strappy t-shirt on! oooops!. The female peep was gossiping to a friend and had let him off the lead momentarily to answer a call of nature. He emerged looking like a contestant for a wet t-shirt competition - very glamorous and slinky, apart from the sopping wet garment which had accumulated around his waist.

Today our detective skills and highly sensitive noses were called into play. The male peep has been droning on, we mean happened to mention, that nothing tastes right, particularly his cup of tea ( and normally he downs a couple of small oceans of tea on a daily basis). Not wishing to be privvy to yet another description of what his sinuses and chest are producing we set out on a mission to improve his lot in life. In only a couple of moments we discovered that he has been using the fruit tea teabags and not the good old Yorkshire tea tea bags and adding milk! How we laughed! No wonder his tea tasted funny. We made him a cuppa of the proper stuff straightaway and a limp and watery smile of gratitude flickered across his sad little face momentarily.

Here are some photos of us looking very grown up. I(Hector) am exhibiting a particular aspect of our feng shui (mentioned in an earlier diary extract) -ie I have tastefully arranged myself on a throw and a cushion that pick out the colours of the bones in my collar. Rufus, however has a bit of a guilty look about him.....and what's that next to him? Is it Ms Vi Merana's legging? Is it her wig? I pity him if it is.

Love and licks H&R (available for nursing care and detective work at very reasonable rates) xxxxxx     

February 11th at 13.15

The secret diary of Hector and Rufus........................contented.

We had a fab-u-lous walk this morning. Round some fields we'd never been round before and we went, as the female peep put it, 'crazy'. There were lovely stinking ditches around the edges for us to splash in and get very smelly (boo- that meant a bath) and we startled two white bottomed deer and a heron, so the walk was also very educational. Why do deer run so fast? Don't they want to be friends? Even Ben was allowed to run and his stitches are still in. He wasn't allowed in the ditches though, but did have a secret splash when he thought nobody was looking.

We were very excited to hear that it is nearly the Chinese New Year and that this coming year is the year of the peep. Then Jester (oh wise one) went and spoilt it by pointing out that is actually the year of the sheep, not peep. Oh well, we make our peeps' lives so jolly that every day is a celebration.

We're writing early today as our social diary is just full to the brim this afternoon and evening! It's a whirl, we tell you.

Here is today's quiz. What is this a photo of? Is it

A -an undiscovered Monet -that colour scheme is highly suggestive that it might be

B- a bad case of erythema ab igne (that mottly rash you get from sitting too close to the fire and not letting us dogs get to it

C- 50 Shades of Grey

D- a painful reminder of Daisy the donkey's hind hoof

E- gangrene

Answers in the usual manner please. Prizes today include a 6 hour DVD of us playing crocodiles and one of Ben's stitches when they've been taken out before the rest are auctioned on ebay.

Love and licks H&R xxxxxxx    

February 13th at 18.03

The secret diary of Hector and celebratory mood

It is the male peep’s birthday and we have been partying hard all day. We started off by showing him our new trampolining routine(set to the music-‘Who let the dogs out?’) but made a bit of a mistake because this meant we had to go on the bed and we didn’t realise he was still in it. Anyway, after that, funnily enough he got up very speedily and after we’d all mucked out.....yes, us too, we’re always there to help and get tangled in the hay nets....we had breakfast and the male peep opened his presents. As you can see, happiness is having a) a new flat cap (though we don’t understand why he needed a new one) and b) having a brand new carpet shampooer that does upholstery as well ( and we can’t fathom why he needs one of those either....)

We insisted at this point that he went on the birthday walk, disregarding his recent diseased state and the fact that it was raining. He agreed to come but drew the line at a birthday swim. Bit of a party pooper there, we feel.

We thought it only right to join the male peep in an after dinner snooze while the female peep practised her tennis. We like tennis, particularly Dandy Dinmont Murray and Novak Dogavich. Sue Barker was quite good in her day too......

We are making him a birthday dinner as you can see –lobster (only the best) and birthday cake. Do not attempt to count the candles as they were half price so we bought plenty and had fun sticking them into the cake that the female peep made (lemon drizzle, if you really want to have slavering jowls). We stuck them on while Ben was at the vet having his stitches out as a surprise for when he came back. The nice firemen who came to put out the blaze promised us that not too much damage has been done to the house and that a couple of weeks in a hotel while the repairs are done will do us all a power of good. And the wax and bits of ash will soon come off the top of the cake....

The female peep has asked us to add something to our blog today, which she says is a VERY IMPORTANT statement concerning birthday presents and is particularly relevant to the male species. Make sure you all either read it or read it out loud to others in the room, especially the male peeps.

Here it is:-

Whilst male peeps like to receive presents such as carpet shampooers, new vacuum cleaners, hedge trimmers and the like, the same is NOT true about female peeps, who like flowers, jewels, wining and dining, lovely clothes and perhaps the odd puppy or two (or donkey, or pony, or kitten etc).

Whatever is she talking about?

Hey, no school –half term. Yey!

Love and licks H&R xxxxxxx   The everso secret diary of Hector and Rufus............if anyone asks you haven't seen us-ok?

Hmmm, it's not quite lunchtime and so far the day has not been our finest moment. The female peep is not happy and we have all been forced into hiding (including the male peep).

It all started when we gleefully ran into the bedroom and leapt on the bed. How were we to know that a) our paws were muddy and b) she had just changed the sheets? Oh boy, we were told off big time. Our little bodies shook and we decided the only way we could make things right was to entertain ourselves, so we skipped off into the garden and had a wonderful half hour or more there while the housework was done.

Unfortunately, then two things happened. Firstly, the male peep walked across the newly washed and gleaming kitchen floor in his muddy shoes and then the female peep came out into the garden and this is what she found......

At this point we would like to assure our readers that no live animals were harmed....

She found-


Half a wellie

One red mouse -intact

One green mouse -not intact

One eviscerated squirrel

One rope ring

One rag ball

One horse's head (whereabouts of body as yet unknown

One duck (leopardskin body, tartan head -breed obscure)

One lobster

One brown rabbit

One tweed rabbit

One snake-beige

One snake-green

One reindeer leg (rest of reindeer probably in the same place as the horse body)

Half a coconut shell

One squid

One stick

Lots of mud

A hole in the flowerbed

Less lawn than there used to be.....

All we can say is thank goodness we hadn't sat on her crocuses (croci?)

Anyone want any visitors?

So we have changed our identities, so she cannot find us. Any resemblance of these photos to any of use is purely coincidental. There is a photo of Jester, not because she was involved in any of the above but she just looks good in sunglasses.

Sunglasses by Joules, Helen Naden

Love and licks Fido and Bob xxxxxx (it's us really -H&R - tee hee)  

February 17th at 18.42

The secret diary of Hector and Rufus.........................advocates of tradition

Overheard this morning while we were playing crocodiles and trying to master a new level of the game where the two participants have to be on hind legs only:-

Male peep (wistfully)-'I can't remember the last time I had pancakes.'

Female peep -'Try thinking about 365 days ago.' Were we mistaken or was there just the merest nuance of irritation in her voice?

So we thought no more about it and went for our walk and swim, had a snooze and then took close note of what happened this evening. From our observations we can report that, in order to make four small pancakes, a cauldron (large size) of batter is required. It will take a minimum of twelve attempts to get the pan temperature correct, a further twenty three attempts to put the right amount of batter in the pan (the male peep likes thin crepes, not objects that can double up as coasters), four hundred and ninety one attempts to create a pancake that does not have a frilly edge and we lost count when it came to the tossing bit.

Funnily enough, the normally cool, calm, collected female peep got a bit twitchy and her language left a little to be desired but in the end, four and a half hours later, she managed to crawl into the lounge with four pancakes served with sugar and lemon juice (thank goodness the male peep didn't ask for them to be flambeed at the table - we'd have had to be standing by with fire extinguishers). The male peep ate them in 30 seconds. We must have a word with him about tact and diplomacy. What took him so long?

However we are optimistic that the four pancakes that are currently stuck to the ceiling will fall our way in the next week or so. Yum!

Love and licks and happy pancake day H&R xxxx

PS only 71 sleeps until our birthday!  

February 19th at 18.17

The secret diary of Hector and Rufus .....................just adorable

A curious day which got off to a good start when one of the pancakes fell off the ceiling and we were able to share it before any of the peeps found it and wanted it for breakfast themselves. The three other pancakes look set to stay where they are for a while yet but we will be checking them regularly for signs of loosening.

The female peep reminded us that Ms Vi Merana had set us homework for the holidays, to ensure that our education is rounded and that we can converse knowledgeably with other dogs we meet on walks, or who come to the house on all topics. So we listened to some classical music (after an argument with Mr Kipling who wanted to listen to some Depussy nocturnes) and quite enjoyed Houndel's Messiah and some Offenbark, before cranking up the pace and swapping to the Rolling Bones, The Beagles and the Pointer sisters(yes, we've mentioned them before but we're rather fond of that joke.....)

Strangely, the female peep (in a good mood because she played tennis yesterday) gave us a slipper today. She said it was for us to play with, that she'd had a bit of a clear out and found an odd one (we can't think how that happened) and we could have it -see photo (it's not as classy as it looks). Well, we thought, that's no fun, actually being given one. Surely the whole point about slippers is that you have to appropriate them secretly and then destroy before anyone finds out. So we ignored it for several hours but have now given into temptation and are having it for dessert (as there's no sign of anything else being served -what sort of restaurant is this?)

As for the photos- well, Jester decided she didn't want to come out and if any of you beagle-eyed peeps think that's a sock in front of Rufus, then it can't possibly be. And it certainly doesn't (didn't?) belong to the male peep and if you can see a hole in it then that's got to be poor quality.....honestly socks these days just aren't what they used to be.

Love and licks H&R xxxxxxxx    

February 20th 18.30

The secret diary of Hector and Rufus.........................a red letter (not a red setter) day

Little did we know when we leapt from our beds this morning and started barking at the peeps to get up that it was going to be such a memorable day. Then we were sent back to bed as it was only 0400h - oops!

Things started normally enough with a jolly good game of crocodiles with Ben on the sofa in the conservatory. We thought the cushions were very lumpy but then realised that the female peep was sitting there having her breakfast and didn't take kindly to the sight of her mini shredded wheat being catapulted onto the floor and Jester's waiting open mouth.

Then we patiently waited (actually we didn't -we made a lot of noise and mess with a stick we'd managed to bring secretly into the house) and then the male peep took us for a walk. The female peep went off to play tennis but promised us that when asked to call 'ruff or smooth' would go for 'ruff' every time.

We were pleased to see her when she got back and even more excited to learn that lovely Aunty Helen Norris was coming to play. And when she arrived- guess what we did? Did we sit down and play Monopoly? Did we sit down and discuss the meaning of life? Did we do some crochet? No! We went back to the river!!!!! We've never been twice on the same day and to make matters even more exciting we met another black lab called Bonnie who wanted to play chase over and over again!

We do feel a tiny bit tired now but suddenly remembered the lamb wearing the onesie, which is now a threesie and threw that around the room a bit before showing Aunty Helen our acrobatic prowess on the kitchen sofa. We think she was impressed -we could tell actually that she was itching to join us(and no, we don't have fleas, so it can't have been that).

We've eaten our tea and are looking forward to the peeps' tea, as they often need some help.

We'll end with some jokes:

What dog laughs at any joke?

A chi-ha-ha!

What do you get if you cross a pekingese with a Lhasa Apso?

A Peekasso- an abstract dog!

Which dogs are the best dogs with children (apart from us of course)?

Baby setters!

Love and licks H&R xxxxxx  

February 21st at 17.11

The secret diary of Hector and Rufus .....................celebrating a spring day. Our sap is rising (whatever that means...)

We were up early again, woofing but the peeps failed to understand that this was us welcoming the dawn and asking to come in. For those who don't know, we are made to sleep with Ben, in a hovel in the garden, where the wind whistles through the cracks in the wood, where we cannot sleep for the sound of woodworm having their tea and there is no running water, let alone an en suite, TV or tea and coffee making facilities and no gravy bone dispenser. Having said that we don't mind too much as there is central heating, double glazing, we have our own lawn and patio, Christmas lights in December and a hanging basket in the summer. We've been practising trying to jump over the five bar gate to get out - our tunnelling under the fence projects have been thwarted by the peeps- and when we do (possibly by a week on Tuesday if our training schedule goes to plan) we'll be able to run round through the orchard, across the garden to the bedroom window and really turn up our volume.

After breakfast and a competitive cross country course around the house to assist limbering up (remember peeps and readers, it's important to warm those muscles up before exercising to lessen your risk of injury), it was walk time and we were thrilled to go to the river- see video. The female peep definitely needs to improve her technique so she doesn't get her shadow in the video and the male peep needs to dress more smartly -I mean you never know who you're going to meet.

Jester stayed at home to watch Spring from the window.

The male peep had an important visitor who wished to discuss topics of great seriousness and we had to lie silently while they sat at the kitchen table in intense discussion. All was going well until one of the pancakes dropped on the visitor's head. We weren't very popular.....

But now we're counting the seconds until teatime, our stomachs are empty, our digestive juices yearn for something to work on. It really isn't sufficient to have only two meals a day and to our horror, we've heard talk of it being reduced to one! We have the phone number of the RSPCA on speed-dial.

Love and licks H&R xxxxxx   

February 23th at 17.02

The secret diary of Hector and Rufus.................................just a tiny bit suspicious of the female peep.

We woke up today to snowflakes and cold winds. Hector particularly was feeling cold as his collar had come off. We met more of the same when we gambolled (like spring lambs) by the river but nothing settled on the ground, so we were a bit sad about that, though the mud was quite squishy and good to play in. When we got back, the female peep started that process that recognise as her getting ready to go out.........without us. Harrumph, that will never do, we like to go everywhere with her.

She had a shower - was it Sunday we asked ourselves?

It struck daggers into our rapidly beating sad hearts to see her put on her shoes that we know are not associated with having fun cos they never get muddy and we had to lie on the bed, whimpering softly and then a bit more loudly when she didn't pay us any attention. We tried our hardest. Rufus, sensibly, tried coughing theatrically in the hopes that she wouldn't go and Ben threw himself onto the floor and frothed at the mouth, but it didn't do any good. Hector lay on his back and twitched his paws -possible pupilepsy. No good either. She put on her coat and picked up her bag (which has black labradors on it -sensible peep) and then, to our utter horror, picked up a bag of pigs ears!

Where was she going? Was she going to see another dog? Was she going to bring home another dog? Was she going to see a pig that needed an ear transplant?

It was a such a terrible wait until she came home that we forgot to be naughty for the male peep, who was being a bit dull, doing reading and stuff and drinking soup. He could have had sausages.....

Well, how we celebrated when she came home alone, without any more prospective residents. But, it turned out she had been to a naughty dogs meeting with Billy Ellison's mum and there had been much comparing of notes and swapping of ideas on how to deal with the problems. Billy is a master of the 'it wasn't me' look so here are our attempts. We think they could be improved.

Off to practice,

love and licks H&R xxxxxxxx   

February 24th at 20.37

The secret diary of Hector and Rufus.....................proving yet again that labradors have many tasks to fulfil.

Where did that cat come from? This is our diary! It's Tilly, not often seen without an accompanying trophy from a recent hunting trip (think mouse,vole or on a really good day, cow)

We're having a sit down after another hectic day. We were up early and played rhinoceroses in the mud bath which used to be our lawn. It's a similar game to crocodiles but involves the new dimension of wallowing in as much mud as possible. Extra marks are given for how filthy you can get. The female peep was not best pleased when she clapped eyes on us, or when we jumped up in our incalculable joy at seeing her.

We got even muddier helping muck out and then gobbled our breakfast ( to show our appreciation of the meal and make sure it's not stopped) before sitting down and penning a letter to the Royal Veterinary College (dog department) to inform them of an interesting experiment we have carried out on their behalf. It is now official that the intestinal transit time of the black labrador is less than two days based on our observations of the slippers we are eating. We are confident that our research will be the lead article in their journal 'The Lab report' though we have been careful to anonymise ourselves and have opted for the cunning alias of The Duo Denum. We're not very good at grammar and suspect that there will have been too many colons in our writings but these can easily be rectumified.

The male peep has been a little weary today so we've cheered him up by playing in his office while he's been working on some photos. We've jumped up and down on bubble wrap ( a very satisfying noise) and fearfully irritating, knocked over some vital bits of the computer and run off with some envelopes that apparently were very important. He seems much happier now.

We're looking forward now to the Great British Bark Off for Comic relief as we really like Paul Collie-wood. And we also like cake.....

Love and licks H&R xxxxxxxx

PS you can just see Jester's rear end in one photo..…   

February 25th at 19.15

The secret diary of Hector and Rufus.................................mud magnets and bath babes

Hmmm, perhaps not the best start to the day owing to the fact that we were so muddy when the female peep got up and then walked us round the field we had to have a bath. Undaunted, because we know the male peep is just waiting to give his new carpet shampooer it's maiden outing, we forgot to wipe our feet as we raced indoors after breakfast and left a rather telling trail of pawprints across the lounge carpet.

At the river (and it was lovely today) we had a fabulous time, including attempting to catch some ducks. Ever hospitable we asked them for supper. It might have been when we mentioned orange sauce but they suddenly flew off and all we had left was one feather. Feeling despondent, we headed home, only to become even more despondent when we were led down to the barn for, yes you've guessed it, another hose down. Why? We'd only just been in the river. Still we don't stay down for long (our dinner bowl is half full, not half empty, but we prefer it when it's completely full) and happily dried ourselves on the sofa (it's very absorbent) while the female peep emptied the washing machine. Just the usual sort of wash -one dog towel, one large pink pig covered with flowers, two dog collars, one dog bed (taken out of the hovel, we mean kennel, and left in a muddy puddle), one snake, a rabbit and some holes with fragments of throw around them.

They say things come in threes and sadly this applies to dogs too. Somehow we got filthy again this afternoon. All we did was play roly poly on the lawn but ended up in and round the flower bed. Another bath, this time with yucky, girly smelling shampoo -the ultimate indignity- and now we are confined to the kitchen with instructions to stay clean and be good...or else.

Today's photos of Jester who is a true water babe, who still likes to have a dip despite her arthritis and who has, in her illustrious past, managed to catch a duck, where we failed miserably.

Love and licks H&R xxxxxxxxxxxx    

 February 26th at 17:33 ·

The secret diary of Hector and Rufus...............................wanted by North Yorkshire Police peeps

There are no clues whatsoever in the photos today but here is a short quiz about our day. It's multiple choice....

Our day started when

A- we took the female peep tea in bed

B- we studied Ms Vi Merana's tome entitled 'The Good Dog never answers back', third edition, chapter five, highlighting relevant phrases and making notes

C- we left muddy paw marks on the nice clean duvet

On our walk we

A-rolled on a fish carcase

B-rolled in some sheep poo

C-rolled in something unidentifiable owing the the fact that it was in an advanced state of decay

D- all the above

When we got home we

A- sat quietly and did some embroidery

B-fell asleep and didn't snore as we didn't want to disturb anyone

C- stole some dog biscuits and ate the car washing sponge (they're clever these sponges, you know) and made a mess.......

In the garden we

A- helped prune back some bushes, tidying up the cast off branches and twigs into the wheelbarrow

B-collected our toys into a nice pile and then asked politely if we could take them indoors

C-chased Mr Kipling who was blowing raspberries at us across the lawn, through the orchard until he ran up into a tree (wuss) and then ate bird food (us, not Mr Kipling -he just eats birds)

Then we

A-did our homework for school

B-chased Mr Kipling round the house as a punishment for coming out of the tree

C-rolled about on our backs, moaning loudly until we got our tea-yum, early!

We have perfected

A-the leap onto and over the back of the sofa in the lounge. Rufus needs to do more work on pointing his paws

B-the look that says 'it wasn't us'

C-the knack of curling up into tiny balls, so nobody sees us

D-all of the above

We are currently

A-working on our macramé

B-studying Latin

C-in an unknown location,which is causing the peeps' great worry.

Ha ha! love and licks H&R xxxxxx    

February 27th at 20:49 · iOS ·

The secret diary of Hector...........feeling teeny tiny!

Well! I have the diary to myself tonight because the female peep and I are the only good and well behaved members of the family (apart from Jester who is always perfect).

Why, I hear you ask? Well the male peep is frolicking in Devon, which includes ruffing it at a five star hotel, forcing seven course meals down at night and skinny dipping in the English Channel every morning. So that meant Rufus was unable to attend school....... Hmmmm, the lengths my brother will go to to avoid Ms Vi Merana.

I didn't really want to go but the female peep dragged me into the car and off we went.

New recruits!!!!! Two dogs the size of elephants! Plus Bertie the sausage dog was back! Yippee as he's a particular chum of mine.

So tonight, there was the chihuahua, a sausage dog, and then at the other end of the spectrum Brutus and Grace, two Great Danes, plus all of us normal sized dogs in between. I went to say hello to Brutus but cricked my neck looking up at him and then we heard he was 20 weeks old! Oh my, how big is he going to grow? He was so frightened he was trembling and let me tell you that when he trembled, the whole room shook!

Vi was at her fiercest, dressed in an outfit made of cast aside lizard skins, with sequins scattered around the hem and armholes. We thought she was wearing some fur tights, but it turned out that it was her hairy legs plus she's had several new piercings done in her nostrils, earlobes and cheeks. She had managed to get her lipstick slightly closer to her lips than usual, but it was green, which was a bit off-putting.

I ate 34 treats and was, without a shadow of a doubt, the best black labrador there. At one point I led the entire class - oh no, that was when we were told we could go mistake.

The female peep said I was very good indeed, so now I must bore Rufus with my success.

Love and licks Hector xxxxx     

February 28th  at 17:35 ·

The extremely top secret diary of Hector and fear of world domination.

We were very tired when we got up this morning because it had been a long drive to Sidmouth to bail out the male peep who had been arrested for skinny dipping. Still we left him there for his meeting (fully clothed and with a bad cold -that'll teach him) and were home in time for the female peep to muck out.

On our walk today we met..................a Great Dane! Another one. Having been told all about the ones at school and suspecting that Hector was exaggerating, the rest of us were flabbergasted to see this behemoth of a dog. We managed to reach high enough to sniff her knees and she looked as if she wanted to play -if frothing at the mouth and emitting low growls is a sign of playfulness.

Then we went to a well known supermarket to do the shopping and the female peep bought yummy chews which look like loofahs and are supposed to be good for our teeth. Not that our teeth saw much of them as we gulped them down in a nanosecond (Jester took two nanoseconds cos she is more ladylike than us). She bought one for herself- that should help her skin.....

But whilst we hate to do this, the cheery start to our diary is just a front because we have news of a most serious nature to share with you. Whilst reaching in the cupboard under the sink, the female peep left the door open for a while and we spotted, to our horror, a writhing mass of sponge scourers in close proximity and doubtless in the process of breeding. Most households might have one or two of these but we found THIRTY FIVE! Worse still they escaped- see photos and made their way across to our sofa, where they came closer and closer, leaving a wet, soppy trail behind them like inebriated slugs.See the looks of horror on Ben, Jester and even the sheep, pig and sadly the duck was tickled to death by the scouring side of one sponge.

We fear for world domination but, there is a hope. We made short work of the car washing sponge the other day and sponge cake holds no fears for us, so we reckon, with a bit of careful planning, we can emerge victorious.

But how we tackle the male peep's fascination with this particular household object is a much harder problem. Suggestions via any form of communication please- this is urgent!

Love and licks H&R xxxxxxx