Dreaming of Chocolate, by Bentley

IMG_0332As you all know our two Jack Russells are very much a part of our family life, so much so that they actually insist on writing their own stories from time to time. Bentley, the elder of the two, is nudging 70 in human years; he’s getting a little grey around the muzzle and he’s not quite as fast as he was, but his mind is still as sharp as any young whipper-snapper and he’s proven himself to be quite an aspiring and somewhat amusing author. So how could I say “No” when he pleaded with me to write another short tale?

Humans.

Funny animals they are. Even mine. They think we don’t understand, but we do. 

Take their “special days”, for example. There’s the big one, Turkey Day, when they all wear strange hats and rip paper apart all afternoon, and then there are several other days each year when they make cakes, sing strange songs and rip yet more paper apart. Now I am not complaining; on these days there are normally lots of lovely snacks and tea-time food with plenty of small people throwing stuff on the floor. Great fun, even if nowadays the ‘small people’ tend to be quite a bit bigger and less gets thrown on the floor, but I still find I’m pretty good at quietly and effectively removing a food item from an unsuspecting hand under the table…..I just love the noise it generates….

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Now I know we are approaching another festive day, because it happens as the daffodils start to fade and the cherry blossom steals the show, and unless I am severely mistaken that means it is coming up very soon. It’s one of my favourites, Chocolate Day. Although – it has to be said – there aren’t as many leftovers as there used to be when the small humans were so much smaller and far less vigilant. On this day, the man of the house, who I truly dote on, typically hides lots of prettily wrapped chocolate eggs in the garden and then everyone runs around screaming trying to find them.

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It is the strangest behaviour I have ever seen; why he doesn’t just hand them out and save everyone the bother I have no idea. You see, he goes to so much effort and wastes so much energy doing something that needn’t be done at all. I told you these humans were strange. When I was younger, there were always plenty of lost eggs that I’d find later, some of them very low to the ground and well within my reach. Sometimes I’d find them much later. I once found one months afterwards!  I know it’s an unfortunate state of affairs with the crinkly shiny paper and stuff, but hey, it doesn’t taste quite so bad when it’s all mushed up with the chocolate. As one can imagine, in those days I put aside the madness of the ‘hiding’ part for I rather liked the outcome.

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But nowadays Chocolate Day isn’t quite the same –  the small humans are now really quite big humans and they find far too many of the eggs, which they then eat without dropping too many scraps. I think perhaps they’re also more intelligent now that they’re older for ‘he who I always obey’ (when it suits me) hides the eggs a lot higher than he used to. Way too high for me and my stunted undercarriage. I spend the whole night beforehand PRAYING for wind – the trick then is to wait under the right branch or bush and hope the egg falls before the children have a chance to find it. It’s a tricky business anticipating where to stand looking quite innocent, but oh, to see that little glinting orb, swaying in the breeze…… it’s like watching carrots being peeled, you know there are good things coming. Perhaps I haven’t mentioned that I love carrots.

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What’s even worse is that ‘he’ now videos where he puts the eggs and tends to go back the next day and collects any that haven’t been found. I thought at first he was obviously getting way stingy in his old age, but then I found out that any spares he finds he pockets quickly and then goes intothe summer kitchen and eats them all himself!! If only I could say something I might be able to blackmail him into sharing them. I wonder how much Mum will reward me with for this information…..hmmm. I only wonder because I’ve heard plenty of mutterings that he, like me, is on a diet!

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How I hate that word. I’m not even looking forward so much to Chocolate Day this year, mainly because these past few months la régime has been a consuming affair and I am forever hungry. I feel therefore that Chocolate Day is going to be a horribly tantalising day of sorrow. I’ll explain, as I would dearly like some advice from you all. 

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They no longer feed me what I consider a proper meal anymore; instead everything is carefully measured out before it is given to me in my bowl.  I hesitate to call ‘it’ a meal, so pitiful is the apportioned amount now. There’s always much discussion about pounds and kilos and – horror of horrors – the width of my back. The width of my back?  What has that got to do with the price of chocolate?? Apparently I’ve become rather barrel-shaped; they always look at me as they say this and then laugh. Should I feel shameful for loving my food? What is a man to do, I ask you? I like eating and what is wrong with that? And horror of horrors, Evie, who is my dear friend, and so fussy that she doesn’t even want to eat half of what she is given, can no longer help my dietary requirements.

I loved her for that, that she always left me something and I could finish off what she left; it was a ‘win win’ for both of us, until ‘they’ got wise to our little ruse. Now they put Evie’s bowl out of my reach too, and to add insult to injury I have to watch as that fat cat, Rory, jumps up incredibly lithely for one so large and helps himself to her leftovers. It would appear he likes dog food as much as he likes cat food. Worse still he can jump onto the counter and I once watched him trample all over a birthday cake.  Hmmmph. then they scold me for being so mean and calling him fat, for “He just has a very long winter coat” they say, “underneath all the fur he’s really fit and lean.”

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Why can’t they say that about me, can’t they see I have my winter woolies on too? Anyway, as I said, I have a dreadful sinking feeling that this year’s Chocolate day is going to be a sorry affair. 

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So here is the point of my post – what is a dog to do? I know Mum’s log-in details for Amazon, and I am quite sure I can sneakily order a batch of something yummy without her knowing, but I can’t reach the postbox key to retrieve any deliveries – a reminder of my lifelong burden of being designed with short legs…..sigh

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There is however, just one tiny glimpse of hope, now that I am being half-starved to death – I have suddenly found I can jump a good foot higher and incredibly I am a lot faster than I’ve been for a few years. Apparently it’s all down to my new trim waistline and I have supposedly ‘lost 7 pounds’, whatever that means. To be truthful I wasn’t aware I had any money in the first place as I’m always broke. But anyway, I am feeling rather energetic and sprightly and I am hatching a plan, I feel sure there is a way I can reach that key.

And in the meantime I’m practicing my tree-climbing skills (so at the moment they are still pretty non existent but I live in permanent hope).

I’ve also heard people saying ‘Happy Easter’ these past few days, why they have to talk about me all the time I don’t know, and I can’t understand why can’t they speak properly, I’m a happy EATER, not a happy Easter. Anyway I don’t know why they keep saying it, but it seems to always bring forth a smile and a return greeting, so I might as well follow their lead.

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I’ve had rather a lot of fun today, having a good moan about them to you. Thank you for listening. HAPPY EATER to you all, too.  

Bentley xxx

104 thoughts on “Dreaming of Chocolate, by Bentley

    • Thanks Nadia, loved the photo of your dogs on IG today, hopefully you had some slightly warmer weather, the sun was still lacking but the temperatures have climbed, so we are getting there, I hope!! xx

  • Poor Bentley! I am surprised, however, because I always believed that chocolate was bad for dogs. I must have got that wrong because Bentley has reached a good age. Love all the pictures of the chocolates and even though I am diabetic, I will have a little.

    • Chocolate is extremely bad for dogs, and this was a tongue in cheek take on Bentley’s life and how he craves chocolate, even though he has only tasted it perhaps once or twice, quite by accident. Hope you have had a lovely Easter xx

  • Bentley, my lovely missunderstood doggie, if I were a lady dog, I would want you to marry me. You see, I’m a lovely, often misunderstood human female, I also do not eat much (not a quarter of many of my size eat) and yet, I’m more and more barrelshaped too…. And just like you, I LOVE food (and wine which you didn’t mention), I love sitting around in the kitchen (or anywhere if food is involved in some way) and with my cooking having a glass of wine and trying scraps of my food….. and I really should have somebody to put me on a diet too!!!! The trouble in our household is that the other significant party is the same as me, only HH is a foot taller, which is another injustice.
    I understand your sorrow; my dachsie used to steal at least 50% of the Easter (not Eater!) chocs when our son was small – she also ransacked our Christmas tree of 80% of its chocolates one year (and left a not so sweet smelling pile with the presents under the tree) – so really I so understand and commiserate with you.
    But you know what: Easter will come and go, the chocs will be eaten, but you will stay and continue to be their pride and joy – you’re lovely when you lie in the sun, you smell sweetly of pudgy, warm and delicious doggie, you have wonderful eyes and a sweet nature – long may you live – and that, my friend, you can do better with less weight! So, let’s not complain and excercise your ability to put on that pleading look in your eyes so that morsels of chocolate will be falling on your path.
    My dog always had that expression on her sweet face, saying: Lord, let me be the dog my human thinks I am! 🙂 wauw wow…. (wau wau is German for barking! – You should try it)

    • Just loved reading this Kiki and how it made me smile! You know those pleading eyes and I feel so mean, I give Evie lots of treats and Bentley just a small morsel so he doesn’t feel left out. It is awful having one we are trying to feed up because she is thin and fussy and one we are permanently trying to slim down! But no he stood on his lead with me, watching the egg hunt, not allowed so much as a sniff, poor chap and there is no way he can jump on the table so all the chocolate lying around is well out of his reach. But I do feel his pain, there are times, at Easter, when I could happily much on an Easter egg too!! Hope you have had a lovely weekend. It’s been rather eventful, hence my very late replies to every comment, I will email and explain when I have two seconds to spare! Big hugs and kisses xx

      • Looking forward to ‘your’ news…
        We had a good Easter day. We organized an ‘indoor picnic’ with out church people and there was plenty of lovely food, chocs for the children (none for doggies) small and big, there was joy and fun, laughter and discussions – letting us forget that the weather was not (again!) very Easter-like…. we discussed on the way that we hoped that all boiled and painted eggs were hopefully water-tight and that at least the sun wouldn’t melt all the choco-eggs and easter bunnies 😉

        • Sounds like a fabulous Easter Kiki, just as it should be. No problems with the sun melting the eggs here either! But we didn’t have rain, so we can’t complain, in fact both Sunday and Monday were about 17C and the sun made very fleeting appearances, warm enough to walk and enjoy the outdoors and to mow once again, gosh that felt good on Monday! xx

  • Roddy, should you read this: Beware, a chocolate spy is following you – he Is on the (chocolate) ball – you can’t fool him! Isn’t Bentley a clever dog?
    HAPPY EASTER TO YOU and HAPPY EATERS TO YOU

    • Ha ha, I did catch him, tin foil in hand, munching very happily, Roddy not Bentley I mean, he was also chatting with the neighbour and handing him an Easter egg to enjoy! Hope you and HH enjoyed a mini feast as well! As you can imagine this is like chocolate city around here at the moment, a Lindt lover’s paradise!! xx

    • There must be something about middle age spread and the age! It’s tough though isn’t it, being strict and keeping them on a diet, knowing we are doing them a big favour but limiting the treats and things. Nothing is ever easy! xx

    • Thank you Anne, I hope things are ok. Life can sometimes be so tough, I know, sending you positive thoughts and hugs and hope things work themselves out and that you had a very Happy Easter xx

  • Love, Love, Love Bentley’s story!
    A wonderfully happy Easter to you all and may there be lots and lots of chocolate … and a few lost eggs too! Bisous xox

    • Thanks so much Susie, a fabulous Easter here, not particularly great weather, but, it was actually much warmer than of late, so despite a distinct lack of sunshine it was warm and the kids raced around the garden like starved maniacs, although they would have done just the same if it was raining and 0 degrees! Hope you too have had a lovely Easter. xxx

  • We have cats and alas Little Girl, our dear Calico, is always on a diet. Her happiness is fulfilled when Tigger sniffs at his food and walks away.

    • Ah yes, I know exactly what you mean, that was always Bentley’s dream, when Evie walked away until we put her food up high where she jumps up and he cannot! Now however, her best friend, our cat Rory, tries to finish her food instead! xx

  • Salut Bentley, c’est The Bean au clavier! I just wanted to tell you that I feel your pain. I am just over 70 now (I had my birthday in December) and the last time I visited the vet he told my mummy that I was getting fat …. I ask you – what a rude conversation to have about a senior lady! Anyway, I too have been forced to eat dust and air since October because apparently 4.6 kg is too much for a tiny dog. The last time I went (just before they sent me to prison – they call it kennels by the way or un Hôtel de Chien …. when would they sleep in a cage and pay for it, I’d like to know …) I was 4.2 kg and apparently that is half way to my goal weight of 3.7 kg. There will be nothing left of me but she won’t listen. I suggest we hatch a plan together – this is serious and with chocolate day looming we need to be restored to the Happy Eaters we deserve to be 💕 🍫 🐾 🐾 🍫 💕

    • Salut Bean, may I call you just Bean or is that being a smidge too presumptuous, perhaps Le Bean or Monsieur Bean might be better. But I just felt as we share the same plight we might as well be on familiar terms. I think I am now looking quite dapper, the family are all rather proud of me, life was looking almost hopeful for the Easter egg hunt today until a friend of their’s came with his children today. A certain Monsieur, a French man of course, and he had the audacity to look at me and shrug, that gallic shrug that as an Australian I have never fully come to understand, still her indoors, she smiled profusely and laughed and said how much weight I had lost, she went on and on in what I call her foreign voice, can’t understand a word of it, and he just nodded and then prodded me, muttered something along the lines of ‘continue’ and then, wait for this, then he unwrapped and ate an Easter egg, right in front of me and let me tell you, he is not super thin either. If I could talk, any language, let along French, I would have let rip, no doubt I would have been severely told off for being so rude, but I was within sniffing distance of chocolate all day and not a single grain dropped in front of me. I was kept on a lead in my own garden. So I feel your pain, I was in a serious grump all day, I am praying for some left over roast lamb to heel the pain a little. If you have an better ideas how to stop this stupid diet thing then I would love to hear them because I am losing pounds and patience! xxx

      • Bentley; this is the 5* reply and made me smile. Not that it helps you or poor Bean but I can ‘see’ the drops of your spittle falling to the floor, the dispair in your eyes – and well, what can I say – you should have at least growled at him – even the French guys understand that. But – no doubt – you have been brought up to be polite in any situation, so neither barking, growling or biting was on. Poor lad.

        • I wouldn’t dare growl at him, he lives next door, he might not let me visit his house when the family eat with them if I did that and I rather like his house, I always manage to scavenge the odd treat when I am there. Still I did manage to get a little treat from ‘her’ this evening, I put on my best puppy eyes, and a look I have managed to perfect and it worked, yippee! xx

      • You may call me Bean. We are kindreds and must stick together. I am currently with my Granny in England who is very good at spoiling me but my mummy is policing every morsel. It’s quite beyond the pail. We shall overcome and it may be messy but these humans must understand that what they are doing is cruel and un-necessary …. after all they aren’t exactly sticks themselves!!! Xxx

        • Well said Bean, I have used every trick I know, the eyes, the whining, the looking utterly beyond adorable if I say so myself, and still they smile, bend down and pat me on the head and give me nothing. I can tell you as that hand lowers towards me I nearly bite it off such is my annoyance at them. Meanwhile the little French one is getting larger by the day, ok so she is having puppies, but they sit and hand feed her so that she eats enough, it’s hard to watch I can tell you! xx

  • Ah, Bentley, I feel your pain. I am also overweight these days, so much weight put on recently that I can’t even fasten my trousers. (at least you don’t have that particular problem!) I am off to Paris on Sunday, & wish I were svelte & stylish like the Parisians, so after eating all my Easter chocolate- (no point in wasting it, is there?), I will be joining you on a diet. & maybe we will both be able to climb trees when we are thinner, who knows!

    A Happy Eater in Edinburgh wishes you & your family a very Happy Easter. xxx
    P.S. All the replies to your post made me smile, so I look forward to your next one.

    • Hi Janet, so I am not sure if you are leaving next Sunday or if you left yesterday on Easter day. I hope you have had a lovely Easter and have enjoyed some chocolate, the diet can always start tomorrow! Our house is a real Lindt lover’s paradise today, but the dogs didn’t get a look in, a good thing! Wishing you a truly fabulous time in Paris and big hugs xxx

  • Bentley, diets are a bummer! Of course, those outside of the immediate family may not be aware of your dietary restrictions. I would practice those soulful looks and see whether that’ll score you any chocolate from visitors, passers-by, anyone……….Failing which you could always take to begging for chocolate outside your local patisserie.

    • Ha ha, I wish I could have begged, I would have, there was an Easter egg hunt in the village, I could have looked longingly at the smallest of children, but they kept me on a lead all day, the audacity of it! Anyway, I hope you had some eggs and a lovely Easter! xx

  • Dear Bentley, Oh, the love of food will always be my downfall. The most fun I’ve had is when Mom feeds me and Dad doesn’t know it and feeds me, too. Ah, joy. Happy Eater!

    • Ah yes I know those days, sadly now everyone seems to be following my eating habits with a magnifying glass it happens very rarely nowadays, if I could speak and lie I would! Anything to get another meal!! xx

  • Oh, poor dear Bentley, I so understand. Too many of us indulge in that chocolate stuff at this time of year and we all pay for it later. I’m sure your big beautiful eyes and sad look should generate at least a carrot or some other treat from the humans. As for the cats, good luck with that one.

    I wish you could hop across the pond and live with me. You look exactly like my Jack, who moved on a long while ago but remains my best-dog ever in my heart. I’d give you pets and kisses and toss a ball or whatever you liked to play! I hope the people with you have a special and happy Sunday and that you do, too.

    • Thank you so much, I sound like a grumpy old man, but truthfully I did get some special treats, I got several delicious pieces of roast lamb that the humans all ate and it was really mouth waveringly fabulous. Really they do adore me, they love me to bits and I know it, it’s just not easy being hungry!! Thank you for letting me know I always have a home with you. xx

  • I love your story’s about your life in France. I love hearing about your Jack Russel’s, your chicken’s, the wonderful meal’s you eat, the flower’s and tree’s in your garden, your trip’s to the wonderful market’s the up’s and down’s of leading an ex-pat life. I use’d to live in France and travelle’d many time’s to the Charente region and so I can picture you and you’r family in all the situation’s you describe. Thank you!

    • Thanks so much, where did you visit in the Charente? It is a beautiful region, each department having their own unique charms as I am sure you found out. Hope you have had a lovely Easter xx

  • PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE DO NOT GIVE YOUR DOG CHOCOLATE

    Chocolate is poisonous to dogs; however, the hazard of chocolate to your dog depends on the type of chocolate, the amount consumed and your dog’s size. In large enough amounts, chocolate and cocoa products can kill your dog.
    Why not chocolate?

    • The toxic component of chocolate is theobromine. Humans easily metabolize theobromine, but dogs process it much more slowly, allowing it to build up to toxic levels in their system.
    • A large dog can consume more chocolate than a small dog before suffering ill effects.
    • A small amount of chocolate will probably only give your dog an upset stomach with vomiting or diarrhoea.
    • With large amounts, theobromine can produce muscle tremors, seizures, an irregular heartbeat, internal bleeding or a heart attack. The onset of theobromine poisoning is usually marked by severe hyperactivity.
    The usual treatment for theobromine poisoning is to induce vomiting within two hours of ingestion. If you are worried or suspect that your dog may have eaten a large quantity of chocolate and they are showing any of the signs listed above, call your veterinarian immediately.
    If you have a small dog that has eaten a box of chocolates, you need to call and go to your veterinarian right away. Do not wait.
    Different chocolate types have different theobromine levels. Cocoa, cooking chocolate and dark chocolate contain the highest levels, while milk chocolate and white chocolate have the lowest. If you’re dealing with any quantity of dark or bitter chocolate, err on the side of caution. The high level of theobromine in dark chocolate means it takes only a very small amount to poison a dog. Less than an ounce of dark chocolate may be enough to poison a 44-pound (20kg) dog.

    • We know only too well the perils of chocolate, but thank you for your concerns 🙂 We don’t feed him any but we do know over the many Chocolate Days that we have had as a family that he has on occasion found missing treasure, and like all dogs, adored it! Please don’t worry though, it’s not a treat by any means, shape or form. That’s one of the reasons Roddy videos the hunt so he can go back and find what is missing. I was, however, unawares that he ate them himself!

      • Hi Susan. I merely made the cautionary plea because there are people, out there, who are thicker than two short planks and will not exercise caution and then, when their dogs are ill or die, will lay the blame on you for saying that your dogs ate chocolate. Alan (in Spain.)

        • Thanks Alan, it is just fine, I took no offence at all, it is best to mention that chocolate is incredibly bad for dogs and I probably should have done so, but it was just meant to be a fun story. In fact both dogs were with me on their leads in our own garden the whole time we had our Easter egg hunt so no risk at all that they could eat any. Hope you had a good Easter with some reasonable weather. Not particularly sunny here, but fine and warm (ish), at least much better than it has been all winter! xx

  • I am glad you have lived all these years. You are so cute and while I know about the incompatibility of dogs and chocolate it seems to have worked for you my love. All the best. Carry on!

    • Thank you Theresa, the truth is I haven’t had very much at all, in fact scarcely any, but just those odd snatched bits are enough to have me drooling at the smell of it! Alas I had none this weekend, not even a crumb! xx

  • Oh, Bentley, you are such a handsome pup and I do feel your pain. Maybe you can have a good doggie treat and a nap in the sunshine and rejoice in being able to jump and play. Happy Easter, dear eater!

    • Thanks, I did, it wasn’t sunny but it was warm and it wasn’t raining! I was given plenty of little treats of roast lamb so I licked my lips rather gratefully and ate all I was given! xx

    • Thanks, he’s looking so much better, all down to you two for kick starting it, we will always be grateful and he is even if he doesn’t know it! Hope you had a wonderful Easter, although it looked as if it was rather cold! xxx

  • Happy “Eater” to you as well. Perhaps the huMom or little people will offer a nibble or two of hard-cooked eggs. They’re supposed to e better for you than chocolate anyway. Congrats on losing the extra weight. Always better to have less than more. 🐰

  • This is so well written, quite made my day which was looking quite drab until this dropped into my inbox. It quite made my day, laughed out loud and reread it several times. Write more Bentley you are very talented.

  • I love this post! I used to have a rescue Lurcher who had a terrible start in life and was originally found starving. He was a bit of a thief and one Christmas he found where I had hidden the dark Terry’s chocolate orange and a small pack of Green & Blacks dark chocolate bars. He scoffed the lot! I’m only too aware that chocolate is toxic to dogs and I was mortified that I hadn’t hidden the chocolate as well as I thought. I’m happy to report that he suffered no horrible side effects at all. He wasn’t even sick, nor did he have an upset tummy (to put it politely!). I’ll never know if he was just lucky or if he had a very strong stomach having survived by scavenging in the past. I’m happy to say he lived until he was 16! Obviously this is not a personal recommendation for allowing dogs to have chocolate…😳

    • I think your dog survived because his stomach was so used to be ‘malnourished’ from his earliest age – so some chocs couldn’t hurt him. My dog was a passionate thief and because she knew exactly that she never had much time, she wouldn’t enjoy her bounty but swallow it with packaging and all. We did have to go to the vet once because she ate a 700g bag of ‘Sugus’, a sweet chewy candy, each little square packed individually, and it was nearly all gone – We thought it was alright, Hero Husband had just received it for his birthday, the bag was still sealed, so we left it on a table but the little wizzard (a long haired dachsie) jumped up to it via chairs and pulled it all down and guzzled down as much as possible. Our vet laughed, gave her something which made everything come out…. ;( and she never learned anything from it, but lived to the ripe old age of 18!

      • I think you’re spot on that Brillo (our dog) survived because he had been malnourished. Your dog sounds as if she was a real character and 18 is a brilliant age. Thanks for commenting.

    • What a wonderful story, perhaps he did have a well hardened stomach from all that scavenging, but what a lucky chap that you rescued him in the first place. Bentley once found a giant sized pack of M&M’s we had with a whole load of party things for one of the children’s birthday parties. The rest was table stuff and games and there was just this packet of sweets. He ate them all over night, no side effects and 8 years later he’s still going strong. Like you we know it is an absolute no and highly dangerous, but accidents happen. What a wonderful life your lurcher must have had with you and he lived to a fabulous age for a big dog. xx

  • Bentley: so loved your story. I do hope you find comfort in seeing how many of us two-leggeds also get upset on the scales . . . you are not the only one to have your bowl or plate half-filled. Actually I too was a wee bit worried about your interest in chocolates and even went and had a heart-to-heart with Mr Google to check the facts I knew. Yup, as your Mommy knows it’s a bit of a no-no for you; ’cause your tummy can’t do something called ‘digest; the stuff: but a little taste is OK . . . it kind’a depends on your weight and the number 20 🙂 !!! Silly, I know. Meanwhile I DO hope that Mommy and Daddy and all those younger family members and you have a real fun Easter and that the weather will say ‘spring’ !!! . . . .

    • It’s ok, they know only too well that we cannot have chocolate, I just wrote about my longing for it as I like the smell, and honestly I like anything the children eat! It really was meant to be something of a tongue in cheek piece, I mean I was kept on the lead all afternoon in my own garden, what cheek! Fortunately they haven’t brought the scales downstairs for another weigh in as they call it for a couple of weeks, I tremble a little bit when I see them, I know if everyone is happy my bowl will be half full and if there are long faces I might also not be so happy! It seems however that everyone had a wonderful Easter and I hope you did too xx

  • Thank you so much for the Bentley story. I requested one last week and you obliged me quickly. The animals’ stories are always so much fun!

  • Sending lots of yummy bright orange carrots to a very special now, very svelt Mr. Bentley. May you reach the heights that you aspire to.
    Ali Xx

  • Oh Bentley, how can I help?I’m not going to send you chocolate, but I can send you some snacks if you want? Get mum to send me your mailing address and I’ll put some smoked fish in the post to you? I do sympathise – it’s one of those strange conundrums that happen when you get older – that right when you start to ‘feel the spread’, the more you want to eat, and the bigger you get. Trust me, I am in the same place as you.

    Whatever happens though, you can be assured of a jolly “Happy Eater’ from me and Mrs C. I hope you find at least one scrap!

  • Dear Bentley,

    I am a 12-year-old Long-Haired Dachshund who loves food but has never been overweight. The reason: I get lots and lots of exercise, including three hikes in a nearby forest every day, lots of swimming in the summers, and at least one long romp each week in wide-open spaces where I can run to my heart’s content. So, if you want your family to give you more food, get as much exercise as you can. And, if you show your family this comment, I know that they’ll do even more to help that happen (which will be much easier in the nice Spring and Summer weather). Soon, you’ll become even more svelte, and stronger and healthier. (You already are very handsome!) Happy Eater and Happy Easter to you and your wonderful family! Love, Bob in Oregon

    • Bob, my ‘Tiggi’ (real name was Lee, Tiger she became because son renamed her for her temperament of a tiger!) was a long haired dachsie too – but the one thing nobody could teach her was not to steal. And for all of her 18 years we were allowed to share her life with her, she never was too heavy because we ‘starved’ her (in her own words!). And she was the only ever dog who cried REAL TEARS when she didn’t get what she wanted from us. We have photos to prove it! Bentley will feel so much better now. Many goodies to you dear Bob 😉

    • Hi Bob, well all I can say is you are supremely lucky. You see I get loads of exercise, I go for a long walk every day, I run free, not on the lead, it’s fabulous, I also have a huge garden to run in, I go out to do the chickens morning and evening, I am always active, well apart from those hours of lying in the sun and snoozing! But the truth is after my stud dog days ended when I was five I was then castrated and the weight slowly crept on, the vet explained to the humans that it is normal for dogs castrated late in life apparently! But I will take your advice, I will try and do even more, but it is really unfair, Evie, she’s super thin and I do just as much exercise as she does, we go everywhere together! Oh well, what’s an old boy to do! Hope you too had a wonderfully happy Easter xx

      • Dear Bentley, I should have known that, given your family and your breed, you get lots of exercise. The difference between us, metabolically, must have to do with the timing of our castrations: mine was done when I was just under 8 months old. I’m going to the veterinarian later this afternoon for my 6-month senior well-dog check, and I’ll see what my weight is now. When my big brother Henry (the Golden Retriever) lost most of the use of his hind legs about one year ago, he and I started spending our weekdays at our father’s law offices, because Henry could better navigate their carpeted floors than the hardwood floors at home. Within a short time, our dad noticed that we often seemed to have a salutary effect at the mediations he led in dissolution cases: opposing parties that came to the office at war with each other very often found some kind of peace with each other if, and after, they had spent time petting Henry and/or me during breaks. It seemed that in observing each other interacting with us, they each remembered what they had loved about the other. Anyway, for that reason, I still go to the office most weekdays, even though Henry died last Memorial Day, and I still am available to mediating parties who want to interact with me. For that reason, my noonday walks are on leash on city sidewalks, so I get a bit less exercise (but a lot more pets) than I do on the forest trails. That’s why I am a bit apprehensive about today’s weigh-in. Wish me luck, Bob P.S. I had a lovely Easter, thank you, starting with having many more children than usual to play with at church!

        • Hi Bob, gosh I hope your senior check up went well, I had mine back in January, despite the expected comments about my weight he did say I was in fine health and I left feeling rather smug with myself! I’m sorry your mid day walks have to be on a lead but wow I am proud of you, as proud as a friend’s who have never met can be. How fabulous that you help people, it just goes to show that people really are calmed by our presence, we need man and man needs us, perhaps that is why most of the time we get along so harmoniously. Sounds as if your Easter was perfect, I am not a great one for playing but I do have to admit I like the sound of children laughing, it always makes me smile. I’m sure the vet said you are in fine fettle, you sound as if you look after yourself with a fabulous family too. xx

          • Dear Bentley, I sure wish we could meet. Maybe someday… My senior check did go well, thank you, in that Dr. Hawkins said I was in fine health. She did give me a routine Bordatella innoculation, up my nose, but she was gentle. And she wants me to come back for a teeth cleaning. Do they subject dogs to that in France? It involves some risk, as it is done under general anesthesia, and it is very expensive, because it is done by the doctor herself. I do want to have good teeth, so we’ll save up and get it done. And, I have to admit, Dr. Hawkins also advised me to lose 1 pound, because, as a middle-sized dachshund, I should weigh under 20 pounds. So for all my talk, we are in the same boat (if you still are in it)! I guess that from now on, when I get a treat reward, it will be a 3-calorie liver treat about the size of a French centime. (Does that last reference date me?) Love, Bob P.S. By the way, would you like to trade Presidents?

          • Hi Bob, so glad all went well. Teeth, another thing we have in common, I was so busy talking about my fine health that I forgot to mention that at my check up in January I too was told I needed a teeth clean under general. The family went off to that powdery white stuff on holiday and I went to my friendly dog hotel, which I actually rather enjoy, but don’t tell anyone and I didn’t hear any other talk about it except that I was to have a long sleep sometime this spring. I wonder if your cost way exceeds the French cost, out of curiosity, here I know they were told 150 euros for the anaesthetic and everything. We may share a lot but we don’t share presidents and we are definitely not swapping!!

  • What a delight! I am reminded of the time that our darling Tulip, restricted to just a few tablespoons of food every two hours while recovering, got so “hangry” that she picked up her dish, carried it to the living room, and dropped it emphatically on the floor in front of us. Have a wonderful Easter!

  • I HIT THE CHOCOLATE SHOP for GIFTS but they had a NEW FLAVOR in a BOX of 6………BANANA WALNUT!
    I ate the whole box before I GOT HOME!!!!!!!!!!
    I have been HUNGRY TOO THESE PAST FEW MONTHS!MORE THAN NORMAL……and we KNOW I”M NOT PREGNANT!
    XX

    HAPPY HAPPY BUNNY DAY!

    • Oh brilliant! The specialist shops here were so full of the most wonderful creations, pure artistry, in fact so many of them looked far too good to eat! Now perhaps that is a good thing. Hope you had a lovely Easter xx

  • Dear Bentley, my name is Max and I am writing from heaven. I was a mini Daschle and dachshunds are notorious scavengers. We will steal any food that we can get! If she left a cup of tea or coffee on the little table next her chair unguarded, I would rush over and slurp it up as fast as possible! I once went through two packing boxes to devour a pound of chocolate truffles. My human gave me a couple of tablespoons of hydrogen peroxide to “clean me out”. Oh what a mess THAT was! And our neighbor used to feed me whole hamburgers, bun and all. My human caught her and there was a lot of yelling! She practically counted my kibbles, saying it was for my own good, because 3 too many and I gained a pound…3 too few and I looked like I was being starved. Keeping an 11 pound dog at a healthy weight was difficult and I know she loved me…just as much as your humans love you. So try to be more understanding. One of the best things about looking down at them from heaven is that my replacement (as if anyone could replace ME, is a pudgy butt Corgi and she doesn’t get treats at all! LOL

    • Hi Max, I am sure you are looking down on me and laughing, because I didn’t have any chocolate at all and what’s worse, I was kept on a lead in my own garden half the afternoon, all for my own good, they said! That hydrogen peroxide sounds horrid, enough to put me off my longing for chocolate forever! Did it put you off? I know they love me, it’s just difficult living with another one of my own species, same breed, same looks, except she is fussy, she doesn’t even finish her food and she is always a little too thin, it’s tough to live with sometimes!!! xx

  • Hi Little Family, and hope you are all fine. I am so busy, I haven’t blog for a month. I am still fitting myself up, when all things are up and done, will buzz you for a meet. In the meanwhile, keep up with the beautiful blog. hugs and kisses to the sweet family, kids and animals.

    • Thanks so much, I can imagine you are super busy, but hope you are happy to be here! Let’s just hope the weather starts to improve a little. Look forward to meeting up and have a lovely Easter xx

  • Love it all, the dog’s fine sensibilities and your charming photos. We lose track of at least one hidden egg a year. The “he’s” video idea is a great one.

    • Thanks so much, yes his video idea is quite clever, this year he went around afterwards and picked up at least 10 little eggs that no one had found. Hope you had a lovely Easter xx

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