Dogs Series 2- Gadget and Gusto Gadgetini Panini and Gusito Macchito
The phone rang, induction date was set… Lovely; 2 new boys for my daily dog walks. I arrived at the house and was greeted with a red Kong on my lap. 2 beautiful litter brother Springer’s gadget and gusto we stood in front of me.
I had been working self employed for about 6 months at this stage. The boy’s owner quickly explained that they could be tricky and must be walked separately. She followed on by saying they pull and are not that social with other dogs. Wow i thought excited but worried all at the same time. The next day i turned up for their first walk with my boy Alfie just 8 months at the time gusto barked and growled and then turned into a heap on the pavement and gadget just growled. The owner and i looked on with worry, Alfie was worried too… there i was on a main road with 3 dogs that didn’t get on… what on earth was i thinking?! Anyway loaded the woofs into the car separately and off we went to Wills Bridge. Armed with a ball on the rope and treats i wondered up the hill to a clearing where i thought it best to let the boys off lead. Backwards and forwards the boys came running giving me the ball back each time, the hour flew by…. this was my first walk with gadget and gusto and little did i know they would still be walking with me and our dog walking team some 9 years later.
Gadget and gusto were 2 when i took them on; they were litter brothers that grew up together. Gusto was at Langford for some time as he had a grass seed in his lung whilst they were younger and then they boys fought once he returned. Many behaviourists came and went during the early walking days but the fights just continued. Gadget and Gusto although had the odd fight they really enjoyed a good play too. I wanted to write a little bit about some of our comical walks in the early days…..
Before sue (my mum) started working for us she accompanied me for one of my days out with the dogs, this was the first time she met the boys, we were dragged all the way to wills bridge mill and just when we thought our hands and arms would drop off we could let them off lead and actually enjoy a walk! Both boys covered in fox and soaking wet it was time to go for a drag back up the hill to their house.
One day we went to our usual walking spot gadget came back clutching something in his mouth, i will never forget this day as he got closer i could see he had an animal leg in his mouth, gusto wanted the high value item and both gusto and I spent about 15 minutes chasing gadget trying to get the leg from his mouth, gadget eventually switched it for a ball then gusto picked it up and off he went, the knee joint now flapping around whilst he was carrying it YUK! I let them play with it for sometime before managing to exchange it for treats and a ball sometime later. I then picked it up with a dog poo bag and ended up carting it around in the van with me for a few hours before home! The boys loved to swim and each day they would have a paddle at the local spa but picture this day pouring with rain soaked through before even getting to the walk then gadget decides to take a dip in the stream. Little did he know it was flowing so fast and the banks were so wet and muddy he would be unable to get out? Crossing 2 lots of barbed wire now with holes in my jeans i jumped into the stream which was up to my waist and rescued gadget.
Gusto loved to eat and roll in poo in the early days and he had crossed a stream through 2 fields to go roll in a field with fresh cow pat. Panicked call to owner she came running down to the field to help retrieve him, we couldn’t see him at first and were asking lots of passersby if they had seen him, we kept getting the same answer each time, “Springer you say- hes sat over watching the tree surgeons in the other field.” Off we went and to our amusement there he was just sat there in the field literally watching the trees being cut down. So funny now when you look back on it but not so funny at the time.
Gadget and Gusto quickly got socialised and i enjoyed watching them grow from boys to men, many vet trips through the years from war wounds to bee stings (of which gusto seemed to get many). Gadget and gusto were often used during the early staff training days and behaved beautifully every time! They were the best dogs for training as you really needed to keep your wits about you. Gadget and Gusto came to stay with me for the first time some years after i started to walk them and have always been welcomed back ever since. They are great house guests. Gadget is the only dog that has always emptied the toy box as a welcoming gift, then he likes for you to hold each toy up until he chooses the one he wants. Gadget is also our local water inspector often tipping up all the bowls and tossing them into the kitchen to be refilled. Fresh water for the boys, unless there was a trough. Now this was one of their specialities every walk it was like a hunt to find the trough after engorging on lots of poo and grabbing some eau du fox poo perfume! The states the boys went home in sometimes were hilarious luckily their owner was very understanding about it all! We did have to use the hose shampoo and often ketchup every single day!
Gadget was always quite special and he was one of the only dogs that absolutely adored Marley I’ve not ever seen gadget react toward a dog as he did with Marley literally throwing himself at him every time he saw him. They quickly became good pals and enjoyed many walks together. When Marley left us gadget missed him on our walks.
Gadget and Gusto now have a house mate called Harvey and have shared their lives with Sammy one of my foster labs. The boys still enjoy walks with us well more like potters these days as they are now 13 years old. I could literally write a book on these two but will leave it there for now, i am sure they will pop up again over the course of these blogs! Thanks for letting me share your life journey boys you have taught me loads!!!