It’s a dogs life.

A month into dog ownership and our pup is now mostly dog. He is well into adolescence now both in terms of size and attitude. We’ve stopped taking him to Puppy training as he makes all the other trainee canines look too damn good. Since he no longer chases tractors, eats slippers or howls like a homesick banshee during night hours, then that’s a good excuse not to spend an hour a week being shouted at by the trainer.

I’m going to buy a book to home school him. I expect to be using it to fetch him a glancing blow on the snout each time he tries to steal food, or snuffle face down in cow shit. A combination of his fascination for all things poo and the odd boot assisted sojourn into a local lake has ramped up the unpleasant odour to slightly below weapons grade.

SwimmingMurphy 5 months

Which gave us the ideal opportunity to try out the dog shampoo. It’s fair to say Carol and I probably ended up wetter than the dog, but he nudged it in the miserable stakes. Sadly I was unable to capture the spectacle of bedraggled, soapy dog because my camera doesn’t operate well underwater. But imagine – and I know this is a bit of a stretch – a back length straight wig inexpertly styled with an 80’s punk mohican. Murphy has learned something from the kids, since his Olympic grade post-bath sulk was a thing to behold.

Still now visitors can now enter the house without having to be revived by smelling salts. Although if the dog hits them in his frenzied tail wagging barge of welcome, they’ll exit the house – and probably the garden – through the power of enthusiastic momentum. When the puppy padded into our lives, he was four months old and 15 kilos. Now exactly four weeks later, he tips the scales at 26 kilos and we’re barely feeding the bugger. The highlight of his day is the 45 seconds it takes to wolf down 350 grammes of dry dogfood. Plus whatever he can harvest from the stinky output of farm animals.

So what we’re saying here is the dog has nearly doubled his weight in a month. And he won’t stop growing for another seven months. The top weight for a “normal” lab is 36 kilograms. I feel Murphy might be “big boned”. But if Nissan continue to prevaricate on their responsibilities, I’ll be checking out the cost of DHL’ing a hungry dog to their call centre.

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