At the moment my cottage is all upside down. The reason is the long awaited transformation of the dining room (read junk room) into a study / spare bedroom, so there is furniture all over the place. I can’t even see my sofa in the lounge let alone sit on it!
All this has the effect of driving me up the wall, add in a beautiful summers day and I obviously had a pressing need to be somewhere, anywhere, else. So where did I go to hide? Well the doggies convinced me that we needed to explore one of the local woods. After all they reasoned, some nasty person might have stolen it so we needed to go check everything was still there. It was the only responsible thing for two doggies and their human to do…
Unfortunately I couldn’t take my main camera as it’s buried somewhere near the sofa. However cameras on mobiles have come a long way giving me a good excuse to play with the phones panorama setting. Yeah I know it’s a bit of a gadget gimmick, but hey aren’t most things in this modern world? Doesn’t stop me enjoying playing with them.
I’m sure once the study is done I’m going to love it and all the hassle will quickly disappear into the recesses of my memory. The dogs however will find other reasons to go down the woods, and while the sun is shining I’m sure I’ll find reasons to agree with them
I love dogs. They really can be your best friend and far more reliable than most creatures. So whenever I hear about research into their history / evolution my curiosity is always engaged. Recently a tweet about the oldest dog remains challenging current theories caught my eye and I just had to find out more.
So here it is in a nut shell. The remains of a dog from part of Russia has been dated at 33,000 years old (independent carbon dating by 3 different labs) and is much closer to domesticated breeds than wild wolves based on bone structure. Previous estimates had placed domestication closer to 26,000 years ago. There is lots of blurb, facts and figures, but the upshot is these remains are being used as evidence that domestication took place earlier than thought. Some researchers are using this (and other evidence) to speculate that it in fact it happened independently in different places across a rather large time frame.
How fascinating! I guess a good idea is simply a good idea, regardless of time and location. I’ve also read about research into dogs which says they have specifically evolved to interpret human facial emotions, allowing them to modify their behaviour appropriately. This is shown by dogs scanning the right side of human faces first because of our asymmetry and how we show our emotions. I’ve been on the look out for this since and my two definitely do it.
Here is Pebbles ‘begging’ in a cafe on holiday recently. Her happiness seemed to revolve around convincing people to let her have their cups of tea, strokes, the occasional bit of toast, cuddles and fuss, with the odd run through some bracken thrown in for good measure. That dog has really worked out how to wrap people round her little paw!
Speculation about domestication includes discussion on the symbiotic relationship which was beneficial to both the wolves/dogs and early humans. When I look at the photo above of Pebbles begging it would be easy to assume that the symbiosis has turned into a parasitic relationship. Neither Jake or Pebbles work, I’m the one going out to earn money to provide us with material things. They certainly don’t have to hunt for their dinner! But you know I think it’s still symbiotic. I provide the shelter, food and warmth (central heating), they provide protection, love and companionship. Whenever and for whatever reasons domestication happened, I’m really glad it did. Ok I’d better go and make pebbles another cup of tea hehe…
Well as you can probably tell I’ve been busy trying to sort the blog etc so crafting time has been a little limited. So I thought I’d share with you one of my favourite shots of Jake while I’m working on those WIP’s.
I just love the way he’s looking over his shoulder at me. Jake is now running around again after breaking his leg last year and I can’t wait to take him walking on holiday again this summer. Perhaps without the near death experience this year tho…
I dread to think how people cope with multiple small children when they have to go somewhere. It’s bad enough with a couple of dogs. I mean they need food, water, poop bags… Normally I carry this stuff in a backpack which I wear when out with the hounds.
Recently I saw this……
This isn’t the sort of thing I would normally buy, but when I saw it I had visions of doggie bags to carry their stuff round in. I even wondered about panniers that Jake could wear. A little harness with a small bag on each side so he could carry his own stuff.
Of course that’s not likely to be what I make out of it, but the mental vision amused me for a while.
It’s hot and muggy here in North Essex. Not the lovely sunshine which inspires you to go and play in the garden, but the oppressive strength sapping heat that simply makes me want to sleep.
In this sort of weather I often head to the woods with the dogs. It’s cooler and the dogs love it. Yesterday I took my iPod with me as I wanted to try out a new app which helps you make panoramas.
So here is the stream at Dedham which the dogs love to visit. The water is beautifully clear and it’s always cool. What more could you want?
Today I ended up discussing hares with my friend Maytheweed. We were looking at some art work depicting them and wondering if we should put our hands into our pockets and cough up.
As part of the conversation I commented that while I really liked one of the pieces, I’d rather spend the money on getting one of my hare shots printed up on canvas. She wasn’t sure which image I was talking about, so here it is. I just love the tilt of his head.
It’s a wild hare which I photographed last summer in a field in Perthshire, Scotland. You can find it along with some of my other animal images in my Animal gallery on smugmug.
I love photographing animals and I often take my camera out with me while walking the dogs. Much to my delight my furry friends don’t get fed up of my lens being pointed at them, which is a good things as I do it a lot.
These two shots were taken in Ipswich during the lovely sunshine last weekend.
Given Jakes broken leg last year I feared he’d never be up to a trip down the woods again. Seeing him running about certainly brought a tear to my eye. It’ll be a while longer before I’ll be throwing a ball for him, but he’s running round and enjoying himself. Seeing him so happy is all the reward I need to erase the memories of all those sleepless nights.
Like many animals lovers I’ve spent this evening snuggling with my little furry beasts. I don’t normally need to do this as the barrage of fireworks doesn’t normally bother them. This year however has been different - Jake the dogs has a bad leg. It’s strapped up with a splint on it but he’s feeling sorry for himself. So I’ve spent much of the evening knitting with a large black dog under my legs, on my lap or flopped by my feet. I would take a photo of this but Jakes not looking his best at the moment. So instead here are some photos from earlier in the year of Jake and Pebbles (his partner in crime).
I’ll take some photos of the projects I’ve finished this week and post them tomorrow (beasties allowing)…..