Child repellent

Whenever we sit down at an outdoor café table Stan goes into protection mode. Medium to large dogs, walking by with their owners and children around 75cm high receive the ferocious force of a guard dog.

Stan’s passion is intense enough to move tables and chairs with his lead. When Stan is sitting on one of our laps all is right with the world, peace and calm prevails.

Barking at other dogs started when we moved to Leichhardt, almost four years ago. Stan’s issue with children began after an incident outside the Pig and Pastry, Petersham. We were quietly having lunch when a young girl slapped him on top of his head, as she walked past.

Gift story

We have two sets of keys for our home. We gave my set to our friends so that when we fly back from Perth next Friday they can bring Stan home, ready for our arrival from the airport. 

The temperature in Sydney hit a sizzling 36oC earlier this week. With one of us sipping a cocktail in the pool I needed a way to get into the house. In good old fashioned style, a key under the doormat did the trick. 
The cool hall appeared gloomy after leaving the intense heat of the late afternoon sunshine.  I spotted a narrow striped object lying on the coir runner, about five inches long. A gift for me, I thought, perhaps chocolate? I picked the cylindrical parcel up. As I walked into the light of the dining room I noticed a corner of the white and gold paper had been torn. The name Stan was written on the paper, not for me then! Inside, one of his favourite treats sealed in a plastic wrapper. I walked into the study. On the floor lay a medium sized box containing more gaily clad items.  
As I sank into the cooling water, an Aperol spritz in hand, I relayed my journey through the house. We laughed in admiration at the stealth Stan had employed in retrieving his gift. It had been tucked deep inside the box. None of the others were disturbed. 

Red and green must be seen

My great local is Morton Park;
For walking Stan and birds to hark
Smell the Oleander tree,
Flowers, palms and shrubs to see,
Tall gums, gingers, lilies too;
Sunshine, clouds and skies of blue.
Space for picnics and to play,
Shortcut home or sit and stay.
The shades of red and green
Can’t be missed, must be seen!

First of Summer

While growing up in ’60 s and ’70’s Summer in England was this esoteric amorphous entity, I cannot pin point when it started. Perhaps it relied on nature’s direction; March winds and April showers brought forth May flowers.
Antipodean Summers are different they start on 1 December. Over the time we have lived here some years on the dot of 1/12 the temperature has soared to a point that when you subject yourself to the elements, your body is enveloped in a cocoon of moist warmth.
Not so in 2013 with a top of 23oC it is too cool to go for a dip in the pool.
Stan is happy, his shaggy coat grows by the second.
I hope that you enjoy the pictures I took during his walk around Lewisham and Marrickville.

A pet friendly place to call home

We live in a society of rules and regulations. Most body corporates will allow small well behaved companion animals, why then is it so difficult to find a pet friendly home to rent in Sydney? We have friends who do not declare their pets and go to great lengths to hide any pet related evidence when the real estate agent comes to call.

The last time we moved house we looked at thirty properties, none were advertised as pet friendly. Whenever we asked if pets were allowed we were told that we needed to lodge an application, that applications would be assessed on their merits and that having a pet would go against us. Agents related stories of how pets mistreated property, damaged carpets, paint work and gardens. I believe the care of a property is the responsibility of the tenant. Just as children are a reflection of how their parents allow them to behave, it’s the same for pet owners, they are after all our fur kids.

The pressure increased for us to find a pet friendly home. When submitting a tenancy application we began including a supplementary information sheet containing a photograph of fluffy white Stan, our well behaved, house trained, bundle of joy:

. No, Stan won’t be left at home all day
. Yes, Stan gets on well with other dogs and people
. By the way, Stan goes to doggy day care once a week so that he can socialise with other dogs

Eventually we found a real estate agent who thought we were a good prospect. We agreed to make good any damage caused by Stan and to fumigate for fleas when we move out.

I call on owners of investment properties to say yes to pets!