So where's the snow?

Muddling through in Austria, God and life, teaching and gardening plus the occasional cow

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Swingle’s problems go on

After another week of sharing letting out dog duties, Dave and I said enough. Swingle has had over a month on the Incontex and no change what so ever. I went back to the vet, who said that if this wasn’t working, there is no other remedy and she has learnt the behaviour. His best advice was just to ignore her as the layout of our flat is not condusive to shutting her in a room.

So night one: Pattering of claws on laminate and tiles, mild groaning. But after a while she went back to bed! No tiddles found in the morning. Result?

Night Two: I didn’t realize that  she was coming in and out at about one o’clock. She eventually went away but was back again, frantic. So Dave let her out, she was gone a while and then straight back to bed until nearly 8 in the morning. Result?

She had eaten something yucky a couple of days ago and that had given her the runs (all these dead things appearing out of the melting snow).  I had thought her bowels had functioned again, but she must have not gone in the day, hence the frantic dash out. All was normal in the garden when we looked.

The main problem is that while we are lying there listening to her tapdancing, I am tense and thoroughly waking up. Meaning I cannot get back to sleep for at least an hour. Result-mental zombie in the morning. Can’t  do this long term. Dave goes back to work soon and I’ll be on my own.

So do we adopt a policy of only ignoring the 3am call? Shout at her to go away? That would make her anxious and more likely to need a trip. Is there really an underlying problem? Do I get a second opinion from another vet?  Do we go back to putting newspapers by the front door?

I would so like to talk to a dog trainer, in English, like Victoria Stilwell, but there’s precious little chance of that!!


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This Winter


It seems like only yesterday that we got back from England, and I treasure that memory. I came back with no depression, just a deep peace. I’ve finally adjusted to this winter quiet, in summer I look now forward to the rest! But I seem to bustle around mostly due to the dog being walked twice a day. We’ve had duty with Meals on Wheels, I’ve started my library service. I just love being there, planning things, meeting people, and the quiet. My love of books extends to those in German now! Meeting with friends to dog walk, chatting as we walk or we watch the dogs play, echoes of those times in the parks in the UK.  The holiday lets have been easier, I got rid of a lot of furniture in the spare room, and so have more dryers, and for our main flat, we’ve got Polyester cotton quilt covers, that take up less room in the machine and  dry quickly, so I’m not stressing about the house being full of laundry! I’ve stopped being silly about working every Saturday either! The job with Interhome as a keyholder I love meeting the people away from the stress of arrival day. I’ve made the odd mistake over bookings, but I’ve learnt now to  get someones surname spelt out if there’s a problem!  I’ve just had a new English student come knock at the door, more jobs finding me, thanks, God! Dave has the meeting for Burg Finstergrün this Sunday, when we will know what his contract will be this year. I’ve started my new book, just need some quiet in the house to get on…..

I’m starting to hunt down the certificates so that I can get an Irish passport through my Grandparents, hopefully that will fix Brexit!

Then it will be a summer of gardens, dogs, flats, sunshine, meals on wheels. I feel settled. I have more training in the  Salzkammergut in June for being a librarian, I have to write this book review in German -argghhhh! Steph and Paul are coming over for my birthday. Its her 30th this year and I’ve just finished a special book of photos of her from 0 to 30. I did one for George too.

The winter has been amazing with a long really cold spell with blue sky and ice,(see posts) which could have gone on longer as far as I’m concerned. Oh, the crunching of hard cold snow underfoot! I like real cold! We’ve just had a mild spell but last night brought more snow, don’t want a too early spring if it means another late snow that destroys my fruit!

The only thing that jars, is my faith. I’ve felt God saying to me that he has given us Ramingstein as our area of witness. Its not about housegroups and home churches, its about shining with his light, being his love in the community. To stop going around the houses with housegroup-we’ve been trying for ten years and each time its grounded. And I believe, someone new is coming here who will sort all of this out. Its not my job, just to instigate. This year will see if all this is so.

I mean to look back at this post at the end of this year!!

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I haven’t done much for Lent the past couple of years, I wont let it become a law. But this year I am. One is private, but a positive thing, the other is a bible study. I have the new Andrew Wommack book, Living in God’s Best. Which I think is the difference between living in blessings, which are God’s provision for us in the atonement, rather than miracles, which are short term fixes. Will be interesting.

And I’m going to study the Prodigal son. All my life, I have felt that the second brother did get a raw deal and I can so identify with his alienation and feeling left out. I know the context is how God deals with his Kingdom and in a way, it relates to the book. I have this feeling that all these blessings are not for me,for some reason I am excluded, so I get frustrated when I can take on all this teaching but nothing changes.

I’ll be blogging as it goes.

What are you doing?

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Swingle’s medicine


Swingle and another mate, Rocky who lives in the village

After Bella left, Swingle’s nightly trips calmed down a bit, but after two weeks, I felt there should have been some change if the medication, Incontex syrup was correct. I’d read that it is one of the most successful, being a hormone replacement, that 88% of dogs were sorted after a month. Hmmm. So I rang the vet. Once again,it was his wife and when we looked at the doses, I couldn’t believe it.

She had told me twice, that I had to read the dose underneath the plunger on a lip on the syringe thingey, which I had religiously done. To my astonishment, she now told me I should read like normal from the top. I kept smiling. She said she must have had a bird in her head, a nice Austrian saying. So I had been UNDER dosing. I left.


Nearly two weeks on, there have been changes, she fluctuates  between a 3 am and a 1 am outing. Then goes through until 6 or 7. Good grief it sounds like a baby! I’m putting her slowly back onto big breakfasts to see if its digesting her supper that makes her wee, and we put her out twice in the evening to help her empty the bladder-but last night I forgot and it made no difference.

I’ve really got to get this sorted, as Dave goes back to work soon and I’ll have to do all the trips, more sleep deprivation.

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Swingle has fun!

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Bella is with us for her annual holiday, and the dogs are having a ball! Playing, eating, going for walks and more playing in the snow. Such a simple companionship. We’d hoped that it might deflect  Swingle’s nightly pees, but not so. Apparently the medication can take up to a month to work. I must admit I’ve felt really low about the whole thing, but if it doesn’t sort itself, once the weather warms, we can make a dog door for her in the night, and Dave and I have taken turns, so I get some better night sleeps. I have never been good with sleep deprivation especially with two kids who didn’t go through the night until they had finished teething!


Still this week has been a joy, I don’t think I’d want two dogs permanently, but this is just perfect and Dave heaves a sigh of relief when he hears me say it!


Ice Wonderland #6

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Ok, got so many shots, here’s a slideshow! Facebook click on the link!


Swingle needs help!


We have been having problems with Swingle since the autumn, with her needing to go out and pee in the night. We went to the vets and on his advice, changed her food to the evening and that worked for a while. Then we tried her on dried food. Then I went back to work and the broken nights letting her out  had me completely knackered. I tried doggy help forums.


Then we had the trip to the UK, and on the way, where her water was so restricted,and we were in hotels, she was fine. But in people’s homes she was back up to her old tricks. Embarrassing. On our return, she was fairly ok, then I went on my course. When I got back, Dave had changed her meat and we were back to square one. I even tried restricting her water from about 4 p.m- I know now that’s a big no, no…Dave is still convinced its a learnt behaviour, but if she doesn’t need to go out she doesn’t.


So we finally went back to the vets. He gave her a course of antibiotics and for one night, she came and slept with us, didn’t go out. Then back to 3 a.m jaunts. The vet did a test in her wee. Negative. He reckons she is developing a bladder weakness, although she isn’t leaking! I see it as a over active weakness. Today I got some incontinence medicine for her. It seems such a shame in such a young dog. But she did have her operation early. She’s well, fit and next week, Bella is coming to stay. All this will finally sort it out I hope.


Any ideas?