For a few weeks out of each year Biggles gets to boast that he’s just as old as his sister – in integer years at least. Maybe it’s my imagination but I do think he gets an extra swagger about him during this time. Unfortunately Beanie’s just had her eighth birthday and now he’s back to being her little brother again. It’s not so bad though, because birthdays generally mean food and fun.
The big day started with a trip to our local pet shop. The instant we got out of the car Biggles somehow knew where we were going, while Beanie was a little more concerned about purging the nearby parking spaces of all dropped food remnants. That and rolling in a bit of seagull guano. Nevertheless we eventually made it into the store, charged past the rabbits and guinea pigs with our heads down (‘cos those rabbit things are really scary) and made a beeline for the toy aisle. Once there – and just in case any of the staff had failed to notice our entrance – we had a really loud and extended woofing session at a big Humpty Dumpty toy on a distant shelf. Clearly the owners of the shop were unaware that Humpty-Dumpty is a well known villain in the Beagle world. Now that the Metropolitan Police have dropped their 24/7 guard on Julian Assange, maybe they can send someone along to Ayrshire to deal with said Mr. Dumpty?
Somehow amid all the woofing, pulling and meticulous floor licking we found suitable things to spend our money on. As is her wont, Beanie did her special biscuit summoning dance at the checkout; it was particularly successful this time, netting two servings of gravy bone biccies each for her and Biggles. We exited the shop with two new collars (genuinely needed, as their old ones were getting really tatty) and two other items that were ridiculously expensive but have already proved a huge hit with both our pups. I can’t remember what the mystery items are called and the packaging is long gone, but they look like this:
They’re made of flavored nylabone-type material, with a slot on each arm that can securely hold a clip-in treat. With no opposable thumbs available, the waggy recipient of the toy has to get to work on it with their teeth. I fully expected Biggles to be the best at this due to his amazing chewing powers, but it was the birthday girl who was first to liberate her treat from the plastic.
Susan figured it was just pot luck that enabled Beanie get her treat out first..
..But I think Beanie’s success had something to do with her superior ability to hold things in her paws
Holding the toy at just the right angle, she was able to pop the bone-shaped treat out in about a minute
The Bigglet’s approach was much less sophisticated. He tried licking it for a bit..
Then settled for good old fashioned brute force. And it worked. Eventually.
The best thing was that even after the treats had gone, the two of them kept on chewing – to such an extent that Biggles’ toy was already looking worse for wear when we finally took it off him. Still, chewing up that nylabone material is supposed to help clean teeth, so it’s all good. What’s more, there’s no need to keep paying for more of the clip-in treats, because a dollop of natural yoghurt and some time in the freezer works just as well.
Needless to say there was cake too, and after a long walk involving an extended blackberry picking session, we all cosied up to watch the return of zombie drama “The Walking Dead”. As the episode ended, the heroes were in a bit of a pickle due to the zombies being attracted by loud noise. All things considered, it’s not too surprising that the show has never counted Beagle owners among the survivors of the zombie apocalypse.