You might be wondering where all this 'angel' stuff is coming from. Well, that is how Lilo's last trainer described her for the GAP adoption process.
"Lilo is an angel, she has no bad habits€¦€¦€¦a beautiful quiet girl€¦€¦€¦the perfect dog€.
And later she wrote to me€¦€¦€¦€¦€¦€¦€¦€¦"beautiful looking - a credit to her first trainer,€¦€¦€¦..raced like a champ€¦€¦€¦€¦€¦if human, she would be described as the perfect child€.
On top of all that, she told me that when Lilo had her second litter, there was another bitch in whelp but unable to nurse her own pups. Mother Lilo took it upon herself to look after those pups as well as her own. First she would feed and clean her own ones, then trot off to wait at the door of the other whelping pen so that she could lie down and feed those pups too. How angelic is that?
Anyway, back to earth.
Wanting to do everything by the book, I took my Adoption Property Assessment very seriously.
The property passed the test but I managed to make an issue out of the Garden Gates. They were actually of the correct recommended height and my assessor rightly said that they would be fine but €¦€¦€¦€¦€¦€¦€¦€¦.
That night imagination took hold: 'My angelic Greyhound sprouted wings, cleared the gates by several feet, annihilated the local cat population and was never seen again. Stripped of Greyhound Ownership and posted on the web as an adoption failure'€¦€¦€¦€¦.. I had the double gates made higher. When they were fitted I noticed that there was now a large gap at the bottom which wasn't there before. Another imaginative nightmare invaded the pre-sleep state:
"€¦€¦€¦€¦..€¦€¦.small dog sticks its head through the gap, gets in and there ensues a terrible chase all around the garden, this time small dog is annihilated along with most of the garden€¦€¦€¦.adoption failure€ etc. Gates re-made. They are now able to deter any steeple chaser worth its salt, tall burglars, gazelles or guinea pigs wishing to enter the garden.
The interior of the house resembled stock sale yards with three sets of baby gates cordoning off various No Go areas. (The whole week long saga of buying and trialling second hand baby gates - cheap but with instructions and /or essential bits missing, returning them, buying brand new ones, stubbing toes in the dark and gouging bits out of the walls was right up there with the garden gates.
Finally all was ready, we brought Lilo home, and as instructed in the training manual, we let her go in the garden; she inspected the perimeter showing minus zero interest in the gates. Then she came inside and into her room where she promptly got up on her sofa and went to sleep.
For days we diligently opened and shut baby gates, which so far had done a marvellous job of safely confining us to various areas of the house, whilst Lilo walked gently and respectfully about the place. The pristine gates went back into their pristine boxes.
Lilo somehow already knew and has never had to be told that garden gates, bedrooms, kitchen, tables, bench tops, bathroom and all furniture (except her sofa) were off limits. How did she acquire this Heavenly knowledge? I have no idea. To this day, with regard to these things, she has never put a paw wrong.
Does this all sound too good to be true? There is a thing called a Devil in Disguise€¦€¦€¦€¦€¦..€¦and I've got it€¦€¦€¦€¦watch this space€¦€¦€¦€¦€¦€¦€¦€¦€¦