Monday, December 8, 2014

And then there were five...

An update on Princess' pups:

The pups are spending most of the day playing in the garden. When a vehicle comes into the yard, Michael bangs on a metal food bowl and they dash back into their enclosure! He rewards their obedience with a handful of dog biscuits

Princess has become very playful again and sometimes teases the pups until they retaliate. I wonder if this is teaching them self-defense?
Note the retaliation from Bibi - Princess even hopped out of the way

Princess butts in where the two pups are chewing a bone together 
After the tussle between her, Bibi and Mvulana, Misichana Moja / Girl No 1 grabbed the bone they were fighting about!  (Note her red collar? More about that below)

On Fridays Joshua helps Mary with one of her weekly tasks: cleaning the carpet. Hem lays it out on the gravel and washes it down with soap and then brushes it. This week it was a challenging task with several pups cavorting all over the carpet. Note in the video below how patient dear Joshua is. 

For my birder friends, the clear bird call in the background of the video, is the African Paradise-Flycatcher which I posted about on Wednesday.

Earlier in the week, I took photos of the pups for our friends, Minaz and Ruby, who are hoteliers in Shinyanga. They love animals and as their old dog, Bonny had passed on this year, Ruby had intimated that were keen to get a new pup.  
 Michael with Misichana Moja and Misichana Tatu (Girl No 3)
Note Princess gazing up at her pups in Michael's arms

I sent these photos to Ruby who said I should bring them through; she would meanwhile convince Minaz to have new pups. 
Princess looks most concerned as Michael holds her pups

On Friday I placed red and pink collars (Princess' old collars) on the chosen pups. We de-wormed these two. I'd completed a veterinary book for the two pups with their inoculation tabs pasted in. Grant's driver collected me at 1pm. I put the pups into two respective cat travel cages and Frank loaded them onto the back seat of the landcruiser. 
Joshua pacifies Princess who watches as we load her pups into the vehicle! 

Both pups set up a howling match while we rode out of the mine. Then we reached the tarred/paved road and they settled down and went to sleep

 When we arrived in the hotel foyer I heard that Ruby was having a bath. Minaz (who immediately fell in love with the pups) told me to put them down on the carpet.

The pups were a bit bewildered in these new surroundings

Although Minaz said he'd love to have the pups, he explained that they'd have to be kept in their other hotel next door. And there would be no control or care as he and Ruby worked all day in this hotel. While we spoke, a friend of Minaz arrive with his little daughter. 
She fell madly in love with the pups (Minaz is just behind her) 

The little girl hugs Misichana Moja who didn't mind being handled, although Minaz had told her to be careful 

Misichana Tatu hovered near me, not at all keen to be touched by the little one

Ruby arrived and immediately gushed all over the pups. Then Minaz explained to her that they would not be able to have the pups due to the danger of them being left on their own, most of the time, from the beginning.

I had already made up my mind to return to camp with the pups when Minaz disappeared. A few minutes later he brought two gentleman to me who said they'd love to take the pups. They were colleagues of Grant's from one of our company's other mines and said they'd already been on the phone to him. He 'd told them the decision was mine. It turned out that they were in charge of the security dogs on that mine. I felt that they would take good care of them. 

Minutes later we put the pups back in their cages and the younger man loaded them on the back of their pick-up truck. They promised to give them water and food when they arrived at their destination which was an hour-and-a-half's drive away. 

I was so busy kissing and hugging the pups and reminding these [grown] men to take good care of my pups, that I clean forgot to take final photos of them.

I thanked Ruby and Minaz for finding me these good men for my pups and then Frank drove  me to the local supermarket in town. While I was in the shop, Grant phoned me to ask how my "pup delivery" had gone off. I told him that I'd eventually given them to the two gentlemen from the other mine and he assured me that he also felt they would be in good hands. 

As I cut the call, the shop owner, Karim asked me if the pups on the back of those men's pick-up were mine and was I selling pups. So I said: "Yes, they were, and no, I'm not selling them. But would you like one?" He said he'd been looking for a pup for a while and would come and choose one from me later this week! 

In retrospect I realized that if I'd taken all the pups to Shinyanga that day, and if I'd been indiscriminate, I could have given away or sold each one. Sad but true. That's why so many people don't spay or neuter their animals. It's an easy way to make a few bucks on the side. 

On Saturday the Misichana Moja and Misichana Tatu's new owner phoned me. He said they had settled in so well that they were playing around his feet, as we spoke. He was also preparing their lunch meal of ugali/maize meal and meat. 

So now we have five pups; later this week when Karim takes his,  they'll be down to four. Mvulana is going to Nordeen as soon as he returns from a trip to Dar Es Salaam. So that makes three. The remaining black and tan female, will go across the road to the Guest House. And Bibi and Colonel will stay here with Princess! (Grant decided to keep my namesake, Bibi on our property!) 

I hope you're all having a great Monday. 


  1. Ah, the pups are so adorable and everyone seems to be having so much fun!! Such fun photos!! Thanks for sharing, Jo!!

  2. i'm glad these 2 got to stay together and that you are familiar with their new owners. i am also glad they gave you a follow-up call to let you know how they were doing. hopefully you'll be able to keep tabs on them, too. :)

  3. After the love and time you've invested I understand how difficult it must be to get rid of the pups. Sure glad they all have found good forever homes. And that you get to keep two of them.

  4. A fantastic round up story about the pups and their journey. It must have been hard to see some go however you are fortunate that Grant has allowed you to keep 2 of them Have a great week.

  5. It's hard to let them go without worrying! I pray they will be loved!

  6. all of this sounds great to me and i know you miss them.. glad you are keeping 2 for them and for you and glad they took the two together. they will feel better having their sibling with them.. i think the pups thought Joshua was playing with them while cleaning the rug... he is so good with the pups

  7. Oh my, the pups are leaving? I will miss seeing all of them.. I am happy you are keeping Bibi.. Wonderful photos and adorable puppy dogs.. Have a happy new week!

  8. That would be difficult...

  9. It must be hard for you to say goodbye to the pups and do hope they all find good homes.

  10. Oh, now the first once have left you ! Your garden will look empty when they are all gone !


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