Saturday, August 27, 2005


Once upon a time, when Jonty the Pug was a lad, he had a bit of a stoush with a Border Collie. We were waiting for the pedestrian lights to change, we on one side of the road with Jonty, and the Border Collie on the other side. Waiting, waiting. Their eyes locked...... the lights changed. We proceeded towards each other. Jonty was on his lead, the Border Collie free. They attacked each other in the middle of King Street, and it was a nasty occasion.

From this one episode in his youth, Jonty has generalised to ALL Border Collies, or really any dog of the same size with black and white colouring. He can spot them a mile off, on the other side of the street, the other side of the park. There is always an instantaneous reaction - he stiffens, hackles rise, he growls. And you know what? They don't even have to be real dogs. All this business about dogs recognising each other through smell has whiskers on it. This is purely visual. We know this to be true.

Just up the road next to Martin the Hairdresser is a gay glitzy costumier, Hello Gorgeous. In the window of this shop, at ground level, sat a stuffed Border Collie. Whenever we walk past, Jonty barrels at the window, barking maniacally, hackles raised. He goes berserk, and passers by think it hilarious. We do too. So did the proprietor, who one day tucked the dog under her arm and introduced us - the dog's name is Rachel. Jonty went ballistic.

One day, we noticed that Hello Gorgeous was closing down. We couldn't let Rachel get away from us, we've had too much fun with her. So I went in and made a successful offer on Rachel. I smuggled her home in a big black bag, hiding her from Jonty. We planned a surprise event for Jonty this weekend. As I was describing our plan to our neighbour, Debbie, she said "Kate - are you playing a practical joke on your DOG?!?" I confessed, we were.
Is that pathetic?

We were out walking with him at the 4 pm walk, and I slunk home before them. I set up Jonty's dinner bowl, with Rachel sitting at it. This was the view that greeted Jonty when he raced in looking for his eats.

We had our cameras ready, and Jonty did the entirely predictable. He went completely berserk. I even used my mobile phone videocam to take some videos with sound, and he performed a treat. What you are missing here is the growling and the barking and general carryon. We laughed and laughed, but eventually took Rachel away so he could eat his dinner in peace. We shall produce her occasionally and get him used to the idea of having a little friend.... or just to tease him some more.

Isn't it sad when you are reduced to playing tricks on your Pug!


  1. When Jonty eventually departs, it seems only fair that you have him stuffed and donated to the Border Collie Club for any member who wants to play jokes on their dog. Unfortunately Border Collies are much more intelligent than their owners (I nearly said than Pugs), The loke would probably backfire. A distainful sniff is the most that could be expected, demeaning for any pug, even stuffed. A bad idea altogether. Get him (her) Jonty!!

  2. Anonymous5:17 PM

    Loved talking to you. The expression on Jonty's little face says it all. You are TOO cruel.

    Have been looking at more reports on the storm. We now have aerial views - the first so far. Flooded everything...bodies floating. There has been mention of serious water contamination - when water can be addressed again as a service instead of a menace. Will let you know about the kin.


  3. Alys and Majella6:36 PM

    We miss you Jonty. We remember the shop and Rachael well. Wish we had been there to see it. Although I do not know if he would have been happy about our hysterical laughter at him. He is a dog that will go down in history.
    Alys and Majella

  4. Oh No ! Hello Gorgeous is gone ??? Pola made my wedding dress - the most perfect dress, she really understood how to make a girl feel glamorous.

    Loved the pug story though :)