Dog microchips: Outdated contact details leave animals unclaimed (BBC News)

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Above photograph: Roy, the Jack Russell, from Leeds (UK), is looking for a new home since his owners forgot to update his new address details.

How sad is this? –

Jon Gerlis from the Dogs Trust told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “We took a poll which found that only 9% of people saw updating their dog’s microchip as a priority when they move home – that compares, unfavourably, to updating their digital television set.”

So, the t.v. is worth more than your dog?!

~ Spread the word: Please talk about this with family and friends who have dogs. ~

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More than 4,700 stray dogs in the UK couldn’t be reunited with their owners last year due to outdated microchips, animal charity Dogs Trust has said.

The charity found 37,283 dogs were left unclaimed in local authority kennels between April 2015 and March 2016.

One in eight were pets that could not be returned as their microchips had not been updated by their owners, it said.

In April, it became a legal requirement for all pet dogs to be microchipped with current contact details.

The results come from the organisation’s annual survey of local authorities, which also revealed 3,463 stray dogs had been destroyed in the last year.

You can read more *Here*.

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The original article by BBC News.

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Simply Sewing! (UpDate) – Please click on Page Link! –

UPDATE, Tuesday 27th September 2016 – – –

Some oldies – weaving, applique, and tie-dye samples, an incompleted big doll, a pin cushion for a friend, as well as a silk batik …

For those interested in textiles, sewing, embroidery etc.

Go to the page to see several NEW photos! : Simply Sewing!

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Waiting

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Waiting…

O, the patience of dogs!

In this instance waiting for my chip butty (buttered bread sandwiching fat fries + ketchup).

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Copyright Faith McCord 2016

Story and artwork belongs to Faith McCord who is the author and artist holding the copyright. This is not a public domain work. Worldwide rights.

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Our Quicky Update

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I was exhausted, too dizzy to stand or walk so I went to bed early. After just 4 hours I awoke. Why? There were banging noises (I was going to make a joke about sex, but I’m not in the mood), almost like someone thumping on a door. One eye open: I don’t want to investigate. 5  minutes later: John is sleeping, I better look. Ah. It was simply my bedroom door gently hitting the doorframe – except it was loud enough to waken me. At 3.05 a.m.: I may as well take the dogs out for a pee…

So, I’m up, writing this blog post.

I normally write the next ‘The Hotel Unicus’ the very day (Sundays) the latest installment is published. Sometimes I get carried away and write 2 or 3 more in the same week. I wasn’t able to write the Epilogue for today. Blame it on the extra stress of late and the long-term illness (chronic pain); however, those things aren’t the only reasons because I’ve written, so far, 4,000+ words on another short story! And, the good news is, you’ll get this one, all in ONE go – when it’s done. It’s called Red Shoes. Here’s a peek…

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My sister asked if I was possessed. My mum expressed her concern. My Aunt Nicky tried stealing them off me. Things were not the same; I was not the same.

“Have you heard of the story, The Red Shoes?” Gran said, giving my beauties a shrewd look.

“The original tale by Hans Christian Andersen tells of a girl who behaved disobediently. She was told not to wear the red shoes she was fond of, to church, but she did. Someone ends up cursing the red shoes and so the girl almost dances to her death. She’s only saved by begging the axe-man to cut off her feet – as the shoes do not come off. There is a ‘happy ever after’ though, when she is redeemed by her good behaviour and then goes to Heaven. The film – of the same name – is very loosely based on the original tale, telling of a ballerina who is torn between her career and her lover. In the end it is implied that the red ballet shoes danced her to her death, in the path of a speeding train.”

“No wonder you’re so happy, Gran, reading and watching stuff like that.”

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It’s another horror/mystery type story. Completely fictional (I hope). It might be ready this week.

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Back to The Hotel Unicus. Since I’m up and feeing guilty about it, I’m going to attempt to write the whole thing – polished (grammar and word-checked) – now. So you may get it today, Sunday, at the usual time. If not, you can blame it on the Tall Man (yes, he is an evil bastard. I warned you).

Oscar’s Update (fleas, fatherhood and Feptember) –

Poor Oscar and the others had a terrible time this summer with fleas, despite being inoculated. It turned out the fipronil ingredient just wasn’t doing what it used to and should. I can tell you, I was very busy with the flea-comb. I kept a glass of water nearby – after a couple of days it was named The Flea Glass – in which to drown the nasty buggers. I used up a lot of Germolene antiseptic and soothing cream on the sore areas, poor dogs. Even John wasn’t immune. He got one stuck in his mighty chest hair. The creature had bitten off more than it could chew!, struggling to climb out of the coarse strands – this wasn’t what it had ‘signed up for’. Paradise being a place, warm and soft with silky fur to bed in and a number of friends to keep company whilst sipping the blood on tap. The dogs were all regularly bathed in anti-flea-shampoo. Also, areas inside the home were sprayed with flea-killing-spray. Hopefully the worse is over now with the cooler autumnal weather and another type of medicene. I don’t remember fleas being this tenacious for 24 years!

Oscar is not too sure about fatherhood. He’s not even sure where the pups came from! Whilst Bearix Grace, their mother, is a relaxed kind of mum, Oscar is quite strict. Which is understandable since one of them accidentally poked him in the eye months ago. He reluctantly suffers having his eyeballs licked, though, by CreamScone, Twiglet and Maxi – don’t ask, it’s a Chihuahua thing.

Dear blogging friends, if I haven’t paid you a visit yet, I soon will. I’m not one to just ‘like’ a post; I always read it and try to add to it with an adequate (I attempt) comment.

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All the best, have a lovely Sunday

Faith + Oscar Dandelion (+ co.). 

 

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Copyright Faith McCord 2016

Story and artwork belongs to Faith McCord who is the author and artist holding the copyright. This is not a public domain work. Worldwide rights.

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3 Inspirational Quotes (ReBlog)

Thanks Tre, for this.

~STRENGTH~

You have it.

A Woman. Her Dog. Their Journey.

STRENGTH: it is my inner peace when I forget just how strong I am. Sometimes, we need friendly reminders. Jernee and I know the importance of that; friendly reminders. Thus, I am sharing these quotes with you, in hopes that you will pull something from them as well.

Courtesy of Google Images

Courtesy of Google Images

Courtesy of Google Images

Life cannot conquer you if you do not let it. Stand strong, remain faithful, and know just how powerful you are.

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Oscar – YesterYear 2013

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Copyright Faith McCord 2016

Story and artwork belongs to Faith McCord who is the author and artist holding the copyright. This is not a public domain work. Worldwide rights.

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The Hotel Unicus (Part 20) – A Short Story Series

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~ PART TWENTY ~

Our experience at the hotel wasn’t what we’d imagined it to be.

Have you read Part Nineteen? You can catch up *here*.

Part Eighteen

Part Seventeen

Part Sixteen

Part Fifteen

Part Fourteen

Part Thirteen

Part Twelve

Part Eleven

Part Ten

Part Nine

Part Eight

Part Seven

Part Six

Part Five

Part Four

Part Three

Part Two

Part One

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I suppose I had expected Sedgewick to disappear back into his body in a dramatic kind of way; instead, after George had re-covered the face with the sheet, he remained with us. The marshy soil was again, shovelled, to cover the body.

The bright white light faded away. The mist around the area dissipated.

We walked on, the five of us. Back down the boardwalk, going east, in search of answers.

 

Black Shuck howled. It was so far away that the sound meshed with the faraway crashing of the North Sea waves.

 


 

“Black Shuck. Black Shuck. Black Shuck.” Whispered the voices.

We all heard them. We couldn’t see from where they came – but I very much doubt that they were hidden in the ever-thickening mist.

Those kinds don’t have a physical presence.

We’d walked on for an hour – or so it seemed – going east along the boardwalk. East towards the sea. Our footsteps soft, barely audible. My body wasn’t complaining. We talked easily of ourselves to one another as if we were lifetime-long friends. We spoke of the ‘why’; the reasons why we came to Hotel Unicus. Soon realising that the pull of the place had been immense; that although our reasons differed, we were united by its stranglehold over us.

“I’m sorry I got you into this, Fred.” Tony said.

“If I hadn’t responded to your urgent call, what kind of friend would that have made me?”

Tony Sedgewick gave his sad smile. “I do feel awful that you’re stuck here.”

“Look!” George pointed towards the horizon where the mist had thinned exposing the top of the sand dunes meeting with the sea-line.

The boardwalk sloped downwards onto the beach and we walked in between tall pine trees. Fir-cones littered the way like a chaotic crumb trail to the sea. The crash of the waves was now louder. The salty smell of the sea and the pine smell of the fir-cones were somehow different to what I’d remembered from previous times.

“If the mist had been a helpful gift from Elizabeth, does that mean she’s reunited with William?” George wondered out loud.

I felt in my pocket, the one where the ruby ring had been briefly stowed away. I hadn’t thought of checking before. Yes, the ring was gone; yes, I had really passed it on to Elizabeth.

“Yes,” I answered George, “yes, she’s reunited with William.”

He gave me a puzzling look.

We walked on.

We came to the end of the boardwalk. So, we stepped out onto the soft yielding sand.

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Galloping from the north towards the south, along the shore, through the drizzling mist, appeared Joan on a white horse. She seemed to be flying, as she neared us.

“I don’t think she’s in a bad temper anymore. Riding always soothes her.” Pendleton said whilst we watched her fly passed us. The firey red hair streaming behind her. She chose to ignore our presence, only tilting her head slightly in our direction.

“She must have been a handsome woman.” I said to him.

Pendleton smiled. “And clever. Those were harsh times towards women, people like me, and people of colour like Mary. Despite that, Joan was a brilliant businesswoman. She founded a successful millinery business.”

“Really? Were you friends?”

“We were never really friends – she was always too conniving; I couldn’t stand that side to her. I was her business partner.”

“Ah. I thought you had an appreciation for fashion considering your tartan suit.” I said sincerely.

I could imagine the two of them working side by side – Joan’s outspoken rudeness, and, Pendleton walking on egg-shells, placating her, trying to make things work.

We stared out at the sea. George, Fred and Sedgewick were further ahead, right up to the shore; gesticulating while they talked.

I heard George shout out: “No, we can’t be!”

Sedgewick began to throw small pebbles into the water. One after another. Plop! plop! plop!…

“We were financially well off, but working with her made me ill. The doctor suspected cancer. So, under strict doctor’s orders, I came to rest at Hotel Unicus; thinking of the health benefits of the sea air. Joan wasn’t supposed to follow me here. After all, I was trying to get away from her!” Pendleton chuckled. “We were like a couple in the worst kind of marriage.”

“It must have been awful for you. Like I said before, we came here because we needed a break from all the stress. What I didn’t mention was that George had had a sort of nervous breakdown because of some problems at work, but he’s much better now.”

“I am glad.”

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We stood there for a while, immune to time, unrestrained by the real world, watching the day become slightly brighter as the mist dissipated. Then it rained and we stood under the canopy of the tall pines to keep dry. I gathered the fir-cones and made a pattern in the sand. The rain eventually ceased and the afternoon sun burnt brighter. We sat in the dry part of the sand, in a space between the trees and watched the sun set in the west.

Turquoise, mauve, lemon, coral and peach coloured streaks against the darkening sky. The ball of the sun, orange and burning…

Nightfall eventually came, cloaking all with its darkness. The coppice of pine trees looked a fearful place. Soon, we heard what we had been waiting for: the howls of Black Shuck.

The sound was haunting, pitiful. But, he wasn’t to be pitied because he was a monster.

Though low at first, the howls gathered volume as the otherworldly beast neared. He had come to sniff us out.

We made out his shadow at the periphery of the pine trees, only a five-minute-walk away: he was larger than I had envisioned, easily the size of a small pony. A soft green glow surrounded him. He skulked low to the ground with his muzzle raised high. His eyes as big as tea-cups and ablaze with red.

The harbinger of death.

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However, it didn’t matter anymore to George, Fred and myself. He couldn’t touch us. We were already dead.

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~ To be continued! ~

…..THE CONCLUSION OF THE HOTEL UNICUS NEXT WEEK…..

 

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Photographs and digital manipulation by me, 3rd May 2016, Great Yarmouth Row Houses.

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My day out at the Great Yarmouth Row Houses.

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Gideon Falls

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Words: 938

Writing prompt: Our experience at the hotel wasn’t what we’d imagined it to be.

Writing inspiration: A strange dream. And a little Hotel California.

What’s a Short Story Series?: A short story written over several parts, around 1,000 words for each part.

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Copyright Faith McCord 2016

Story and artwork belongs to Faith McCord who is the author and artist holding the copyright. This is not a public domain work. Worldwide rights.

Posted in Short Story Series | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 11 Comments