Since the launch of our wine based pastes and marmalades (and soon to come, mustards), and with an exuberant, bounding “dog” logo, several customers have asked – just who is Spotty Dog?
Over the years we’ve had a penchant for rescue pets. All our cats and dogs have come from the RSPCA, Pet Rescue Australia or – as in the case of Cheeky, our current cat – literally rescued from a friends’ neighbours’ backyard swimming pool at four weeks of age.
Spot was “spotted” by our daughter on the Pet Rescue website. Our previous RSPCA dog, a gentle keeshond/shepherd cross, had only recently passed away from liver cancer after sharing a wonderful 10 years with us, and the house seemed so quiet with only Cheeky sleeping on the bed.
Spot came into our lives as an eight week old squirming fluff ball. His rescue pet name was Bear but, being totally white (as a puppy) with one large black spot on his back, he just had to have a name change.
Spot is our energetic bundle of constant happiness and optimism – of sheer joy and acceptance – and a mutt of unknown parentage. With help from our local vet, we suspect he is a Border Collie, Golden Retriever, Kelpie cross – with perhaps something else added in.
We don’t mind his mongrel heritage. At nearly 2 years of age, he is full of boundless energy and constantly thrilled with what farm life has to offer. Spot also seems to operate at two speeds – flat out or asleep – he is afraid of cattle but doesn’t mind “rounding up” the humans when you’re walking through the paddock, loves swimming in the dams, stealing cat food, demanding endless games of ball and chasing bird shadows.
He was also born completely deaf.
According to our vet, deafness is common in Border Collies, as they are descended from Dalmatians, and the deafness is related to the pie-bald gene (he does have the very spotty Dalmatian skin under all that fur).
Training has been an interesting process. Fortunately he is intelligent enough to pick up simple sign, and complex body, language – although that doesn’t stop him ignoring the “come” command when there is something more interesting on offer.
We love him, despite his boyish traits of pulling things apart to see how they work and leaving mud all over the house. Life is so much richer for sharing it with our Spotty Dog that we wouldn’t swap him for the world … however much Cheeky may beg to differ.
Here’s to good food, wine and friends – and Spotty Dogs the world over