As a retired guide dog, Freda spent a lot of time in my doggy day care as she stayed with me for two nights every week. She was an absolute dream! Staying in my doggy day care, Freda never left my side, as you can see, and she was a wonderful companion to have in my studio as I worked (the finished version of the work seen in the corner of the bottom-left photograph can be viewed here.) Being a guide dog she was allowed in shops with the manager's permission and she soon became a superstar at Jarrolds Department Store! Assistants would come around from the cash register to give her a fuss. 'Freda' means 'peace' and this describes the atmosphere that she would generate wherever we would go. One of the unexpected benefits of shopping with a yellow Labrador was that, as we have the same colouring (as I'm blonde), selecting clothes to try on became a whole world easier as I would just hold them up to her fur to see if the colour was suitable for me!
Freda could also count at least to two and she knew when 3pm was as this was treat time and she had two treats. I would give her one, she would eat it with a quiet glee, then come for another. But never a third, which is why I know she can count to two. Once, we were in the cinema and I gave her her chew while I had pop corn and to my horror the second I gave it to her the film began. I thought there were going to be more ads and trailers! Crunch, crunch, crunch, all through the start of the film. I felt terrible for the other viewers. So I took Freda out and sat with her while she finished her chew. Then I gave her her second one and waited again. When I thought she'd finished I cajoled her to get up so we could go back into the cinema and her portable dog bed, but she had an expression of consternation on her face and her mouth was all wonky. I had a closer look and she had hidden her chew long-ways in her mouth! She didn't want to be rushed. So I sat with her during this sacred time while she nibbled her chew and when she had finished in her own time we went back in and she had a siesta.
These were joyful times pet sitting for Freda in my doggy day care.
Elizabeth is a dedicated dog walker with over five years experience. With a a first class degree in Fine Art from Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design she is trustworthy, reliable, energetic and loves animals.