Toby Week 8: Licence to chill

Another visit to the dog-tors this week, to get the required kennel cough which is important when he’s in contact with many other dogs at Paws Doggy DayCare.  While there, the vet gave him a good checking over, his weight is 10kg which is spot on, and all other checks showed him to be in great shape.  But oh, he is really timid when there, and retreats for cuddles in Dad’s arms.

fathersday

Talking of which, it’s been Dog-fathers Day!  The pupsters gave him a card with a pug on it, and a notebook with a staffy on it.  Chris is all about the Elvis, looking forward to their upcoming Vegas boys trip.

He really enjoys going to doggy day care, and has been there 3 days a week.  Look at him ready with Big Sis for the morning school run.

toabypawspickup

He is knackered afterwards!

IMG_1282

Saturday was a bit of a trial – he pooped in Dad’s office, then threw up in the car! Maybe a little bit of ginger biscuit before a car trip will help the queasiness.

Sundays are family fun days, and a bit of off lead training in Moira Demesne, while I tail walked with Minnie at Moira Juniors parkrun

But his favourite lap to curl up in is Chris.

tobyandchris

parkrun tourism: Holy Cross, Strabane

parkrun#257 event#63

Reason for visit: tagging on a Fathers Day lunch.

Latest addition to the NI stable, and much to the delight of alphabeteers, it begins with a haitch!

IMG_1302

 

Access:

The postcode given on the parkrun page takes you right there.  From Omagh, through the delightfully pretty village of Sion Mills, and at the roundabout as you enter Strabane go straight ahead, past the Fir Trees hotel.

Facilities:

There is plenty of car parking, but even though the course takes place in the College grounds, there is no access to the building itself.  ie NO TOILETS!  Remember the Fir Trees Hotel you passed on the way?  Time to pay it a closer look.  There was tea, coffee and biscuits on this occasion, and there is a Mace shop across the road which does hot deli food if you fancy something more substantial.

Course:

The start is a little way from the finish, on a wide tarmac path.

Round a cone and onto the running track, which is mostly gravel.

Up a gentle (!) slope behind the school, and back around to the front.

On the 4th lap you finish here.

IMG_1305

The running track is quite wide, so make sure you hug the inner path if possible, or you’ll be running more than 5k.  There’s one wee stretch where runners are travelling in both directions, so keep to the right at this section.

Crowd:

Inaugurals attract crowds, but the just under 200 runners today were very well managed by the volunteer team.  I was one of at least 4 people wearing 250 shirts, and I recognised a few other familiar faces.  There were a couple of buggies, but this is a NO DOGS course, due to school rules.

The best surprise was when Dame Kelly Holmes turned up with a film crew.  She gave a short talk during the pre-run brief about the programme she’s making, which looks at the benefits of exercise like parkrun, not just physical but also for good mental health and stress management.  She then started at the back of the pack with her go-pro, gradually overtook the field, giving encouragement as she went, finished as first lady and then headed back out onto the course to give high fives and words of support to those still running.  And then she happily stayed chatting and posing for photos afterwards.  What a wonderful inspiring woman!

IMG_1325

Gear:

I had remembered to charge my Garmin and earphones.  Sadly, my phone had failed to charge overnight, so I was limited as to what photos I could take, and couldn’t use the music/ headphones.  I had my new barcode water bottle, which kept my water refreshingly cool.  The weather was miserable in Belfast, but as I headed west it gradually brightened, and I needed my sunglasses during the run.  Road shoes would be fine for the surface.

IMG_1298

Time:

I was aiming for sub-35, and managed it.

Strangely Appropriate Song on Shuffle:

No music on my headphones, but I did enjoy singing along to the car radio and Birdhouse In Your Soul, which I haven’t heard in a while

IMG_1301

All My parkruns:

list of all parkruns completed

Toby week 7: Under my umberella, ella, ella

Well, Mister Toby is not a fan of the rain!

IMG_1283

I’m still taking him out frequently to consolidate the house-training, so this week’s heavy showers have seen me standing by the back door with an umbrella, trying to encourage him to come with me in the micro-climate.  He is smart though – he figured out he could find some shelter under the honeysuckle hedge by the deck, and made a dash for there.

Morning tussles are a little less frentetic, though we still have the odd growly ownership dispute over a nylabone.  (There are 2 nylabones, but the concept of having one each is a little sophisticated).

tobyitch

Days spent at Paws Doggy Daycare are filled with fun, and the staff are really good at posting photos and videos of their furry pupils.

toabyandchums

A new bed – a Game of Thrones printed big cushion – feel free to insert your GOT pun here.tobygot

And time for a big-boy “Ruffwear” harness for travelling in the car – it’s an S, same size as Minnie’s, but it has a lot of adjusting straps which make the fit just right. I think green is definitely his colour!

tobyharnessgreen

 

Toby Week 6: ….and 4 months old!

This week it’s been Master Toby’s 4 month-birthday.  We didn’t have any cake, but we did get to go out together to Moira Juniors parkrun.  I tailwalked with Minnie, and Roger and Toby marshalled near the turn point, before heading into the middle of the park to do some off lead work.  He’s grown so fast he’s now in the next size up fleece.  And happily travels in the boot of my car with Minnie.

tobyintheboot

Afterwards we tucked into McMuffins, and both dogs sat beautifully in the pleasant sunshine.  This made the whole experience quite relaxing.

tobymcmuffin

House training is about 80% – there have been a few times where he has gone to the door and squeaked, but we haven’t been quick enough to take him outside.  But that’s our fault, not his.

He’s a familiar face now at Paws, and I love checking in on the webcams to see how he’s doing.  He certainly has plenty of playmates.

tobypal

Bed destruction continues – he may well be the unintended dog, but an unattended dog is really asking for trouble!  Tell me this is just a puppy phase….