How are dogs – and their owners – faring in lockdown? We invited owners to share, and want you to share too … tag @theglossmag in your pictures and videos on Instagram and use the hashtag #GlossyDogs …
High-end hounds and cossetted canines are having to learn new tricks in this pesky lockdown. Not only are the legs being walked off them on a daily basis but home, usually partially deserted at given times, is a now constant whirl of activity. There are endless Zooms, round-the-clock supervision and no sneaky snoozing in the master suite.
The life of lockdown dogs is harder than it seems. Their owners’ tempers are frayed. No one is going to the office or school or gym or golf or even for a coffee; teenagers are acting out, mothers haven’t a second to themselves and men, having taken possession of prime real estate at home to WFH, have extended their dominion to rule every kitchen.
How are dogs and their owners faring in lockdown? We invited owners to share, and want you to share too … tag @theglossmag in your pictures and videos on Instagram and use the hashtag #GlossyDogs.
Suzie McAdam and Mischko
Suzie McAdam, interior designer and judge on RTE’s Home of the Year, shares the story of her Samoyed, Mischko who loves snowy walks in the Wicklow mountains and life as a big brother …
“After years of begging I finally got my first dog aged ten; he was a rescue black and white Springer Spaniel called Solo. My Granny also bred bearded Collies so I loved spending time with them growing up. I loved dogs so much, I actually wanted to be a vet before I set my sights on becoming an interior designer.
I do have a soft spot for big dogs and if I had more space I’d be tempted to get an Irish Wolfhound. I also love poodles, as they are so intelligent. How I came to own a Samoyed dates back to 2010, when I was walking along Brittas Bay. I met a lady with three Samoyeds. I had never actually seen this breed before. I fell totally in love with her brood and didn’t want to leave, as they were so affectionate and playful.
We exchanged telephone numbers and when we finally moved house and acquired a garden, I got in touch with her to ask about breeders. I think it’s incredibly important if you are choosing a purebred puppy to always go through a reputable breeder and never online. The breeder I contacted was quite selective as she only has a litter every couple of years. After lots of persistence on my side, as well as passing a few tests, we eventually met our little pup Mischko in 2012.
My first dog, Solo, was very obedient and relatively easy to train, so I mistakenly thought I had expert dog skills. Samoyeds are very headstrong and quite a determined breed which take a lot of training and energy. Mischko in a nutshell is not the best behaved dog in the world, but he is worth every second.
One joy of lockdown is how much attention Mischko is getting. My husband and I are both working from home, so depending on his mood he can keep one of us company during the day. I find he’s an excellent foot warmer – he loves plonking himself as close to me as possible at all times.
When my baby arrived in April last year, I felt guilty that I wasn’t giving him as much attention or walks as I had given previously. However, he’s now settled into life as a big brother and loves all the extra food he can discover on the kitchen floor too.
Our favourite walks are up the Wicklow mountains. I’ve never seen him so happy as when he’s jumping around on some fresh snow.” @suziemcadam
Helen Cody and Harry and Joe
Fashion designer Helen Cody wouldn’t be without Harry and Joe, her Shitzu Jack Russell terriers …
“Harry and Joe are very much loved and such an important presence in our lives. They are a delicious mixture of playful rascals and affectionate companions.
I found them on Gumtree when I was living in London. I recall having to drive to Deptford on a very snowy day in December 2010. I abandoned the car about a mile from the house, and walked the rest to collect the one puppy I had requested. When I saw the two tiny scruffs falling over each other I knew I couldn’t separate them, so I came back to Peckham where we lived with both of them. They were so tiny I used to put them to bed with matching hot water bottles with cashmere covers. I even woke up at 4am to refill their hot water bottles so they wouldn’t be cold.
Siblings, if left together bond with each other and not the owner, so training them when they were younger was a nightmare. However, such was my love for them, I persevered and eventually they improved.
They have distinct characters – Joe has a sock obsession and Harry would happily spend all day playing fetch the ball if he could.
During lockdown, Harry and Joe have been amazing, even if they do get us up early for walks, whether we feel like it or not. Our favourite route is around the parks of Dublin 8 and, if they are lucky, Sandymount beach. When we’re there, we can let them off the lead and they bark their heads off with the pure joy the sea air brings. They have their own hashtag #harryandjoesadventures on Instagram and I’ve found it’s a lovely way of keeping all their pictures together.
After their morning walk, they either accompany me to my studio or go with Rory to his office so they are very rarely on their own.
As they are my first dogs and are now ten years old, we do think about someday adding to the family, though I’d hate them to be inconvenienced by a new arrival. I will definitely be one of those nutty old ladies with a large collection of mutts. Even now I find myself chatting to every dog I meet – any excuse for a cuddle – and I love drawing friends’ dogs to give as gifts.” @helencodydublin
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