Where do you live and what is it like there?
I live in London in the United Kingdom. It is an enormous city with 8.5 – 14 million inhabitants depending which figures you agree with. London is very built up but we have lots of green spaces with 8 enormous Royal Parks too such as Hyde Park, St James’s Park and Greenwich Park.
We live on Gunnersbury Park which is in a place called Gunnersbury which is located between Chiswick and Ealing. The Rothchild Family sold the house and grounds to the local Councils in the 1930s and they allowed houses to be built on the perimeter and we have one of those. Our back garden fence has a door which opens up into the park. This is very handy for dogs like me. The park is huge – 23 football pitches in the winter, cricket pitches, tennis courts, boating lake, fishing pool, formal gardens, childrens’ playground, cafe and a Museum.
Us dogs can roam everywhere off our leads throughout the park except in the childrens’ play area. Mum also puts me on a lead near the duck pond as she doesn’t want me to chase any ducks or geese. She is the Queen of No Fun at times like this.
How long have you lived there?
I arrived here on January 18 2009 – so just over 4 years now.
How long have you lived with your family?
With my current/real family I have lived since I was bought here in January 2009.
I was about three years old at that time.
The time before that doesn’t really count, but I will tell you a bit about it.
I was been found tied up to the Central Reservation (North American translation – center median) on a motorway between Devon and Cornwall. When they found me I had been kicked and had broken ribs and a gash across my mouth. The Dogs Trust nursed me better and found a nice lady to live with in Cornwall.
Oh dear! How did you end up on the motorway?
No one knows how I got onto the motorway and where I lived before and I’m refusing to speak about it, or I can’t remember or choose not to anyway. My Mum thinks I was probably lost and had been kicked by a horse or cow as I have no fear of humans at all. Someone at least had the decency to tie me up although not enough to help me otherwise.
So you moved in with a nice lady in Cornwall, and lived happily ever after?
Well, not exactly, you see…the nice lady in Cornwall and I did not get on.
You didn’t get on? How come?
Well, it’s like this – I kept escaping and getting lost.
Kept escaping? Like more than one time?
Yes. On three occasions I was lost for hours and was returned because I was chipped now.
What else didn’t you like about living with her?
Well, I also didn’t want to walk on the beach where she walked everyday with her other dog. I simply don’t like wet paws. Who does?
So, you, um, broke up with her?
Basically yes. I think that last breakout was the last straw so she phoned the Bedlington Rescue people to find me another home.
And the timing was just right.
How did your Mum find you there?
Just at that same time my Forever Mum decided the time was right for her to get another dog.
She’d had a dog before?
Yes, her last dog had died 2 years before at age 19. She’d spent those two years of dog-less (read – sad lonely miserable times I’m assuming) time to travel to all those places she had wanted to see.
So having finally walked on the Great Wall of China (editors note – Which I bet is no fun without a dog) she was lonely for another dog, and I was lonely for a proper home.
But how did she actually come to select you?
Well, she decided she needed quite a small dog – she had had a difficult time coping with her large Border Collie when it’s back legs went, she simply couldn’t carry her easily. She tried contacting Battersea Dogs Home but they had very few small dogs on offer and told her to try the Rescue Groups.
Having recently met an absolutely lovely little Bedlington in the park she phoned the Bedlington Rescue first. They had two Bedlingtons that needed rescuing, me and a really old girl in Scotland who was going blind.
So she picked you?
No, not so fast. What happened was, my Mum offered to take the old dog because she was so sorry for her. She advised the Rescue but they decided the journey from Scotland would be too much for the older pup so they gave her the number of the lady who I was living with in Cornwall.
The one who kept losing you and insisting on long walks on sandy beaches?
Yes, that’s the one. After several calls the lady offered to drive me up to London. I am very good in cars, I just curl up on the back seat and sleep.
So THEN you got to your forever home?
Yes I did! I arrived here with my bed, lead and papers. I couldn’t help feeling that this lady was relieved to get rid of me!
And you didn’t run away anymore?
Well, my Mum took advice from the Bedlington People. The explained that we are sighthounds and like to chase things so we should not be left unsupervised in the garden until the fences are really Bedlington proof! They also told her that new dogs should be kept on a lead for at least three months so they absolutely know where their home now is.
Did you keep her on her toes?
Well, I tried. She got the fences mended. This became an ongoing project for some time as I am very good at finding any weak points.
Did you make a break for it?
Yes, several times I escaped into the park and had a good old chase!
Uh oh! You didn’t!
Oh yes I did! But this time I came back. I’m pleased to advise, we now have the best fences in West London!
How did she finally get you contained?
She marched me round the park for at least two months on an extender lead. After that she felt I wasn’t going anywhere as I wouldn’t leave her side.
And the relationship is better than the one you had with the lady in Cornwall?
Yes, for sure! We are very cosy together. Like most sight hounds I have bursts of energy and then sleep for hours.
And who is in your pack now?
I live with my Mum – who is old and retired. This situation suits me as she doesn’t have to leave me all day. I have a HuSis who lives about 10 minutes away in a place called Chiswick. She is always here to see me. It is obvious that she likes me very much.
What breed are you exactly?
Can’t you tell? I am a Blue Bedlington Terrier. I’m not actually blue, I am grey but they say blue. Those humans are very odd at times I think.
s your city dog-friendly?
I guess it is we are allowed to run free in the parks and dogs are everywhere but not in shops.
Do they have designated dog parks?
I am not sure whether we do or not. I have never seen one.
Are there any particular places you like to go walking?
I like our park the best. I do not like walking up and down our road as very big vehicles sweep past us and frighten me. Otherwise I walk anywhere with my Mum. I won’t willing walk away with anyone else even HuSis.
I am particular unhappy when we hit Motorway service Stations. My Mum thinks this is where I got lost perhaps.
Are dogs allowed in restaurants?
In London, no unless they have gardens. (Editors Note: In the UK a ‘garden’ at a restaurant means an outside eating area, not rows of carrots and corn).
When we have holidays out of London in the UK (the only place my Mum can have holidays now as she can’t possibly leave me) we have found lovely restaurants that allow dogs in areas such as Dorset and Whitby in Yorkshire. Guide dogs get to go everywhere though.
Can dogs go on public transport?
Dogs are allowed on the Underground (Subway) and on buses if the driver agrees.
Say that again?!
Yes, dogs ARE allowed on public transit!
That is so cool and I wish it was the same here.
However, dogs are not popular during rush hour when the buses are crowded.
Do people there dress their dogs?
People in the UK do not dress their dogs on the whole. Some young ladies and those not so young, dress small dogs in matching outfits but most humans tut at that. Then small dogs and old dogs wear coats when it is cold in the winter. Now, obviously we all wear silly accessories – bunny ears, santa hats etc for photos and to amuse our humans. In fact, I have a Santa set bought by HuSis, I wore the kerchief all over Christmas but that hat lasted two minutes!
Do most people have dogs there?
There are a lot of dogs in London but many more cats I think. Many people live in flats (apartments) where animals are not allowed and it seems they can get away with cats more easily in those circumstances. My Mum would not have a cat where we live because the roads are so dangerous.
What is the climate like?
Wet – we had torrential rain this year especially in the Summer and now we have just had the coldest Easter on record. My Mum wants to know what happened to Global Warming!
What is your favourite local treat to eat?
I am not sure any treats are local. My favourite is Picnic Jumbles Treats, they are Turkey, Chicken, Beef, Liver and Cheese moulded into little shapes. Also, I quite like gravy bones but I am not very fond of milk bones.
Not fond of milk bones? There are a daily staple here.
Well, best of all I like human treats, Chinese Prawns Crackers and Papadoms are my faves. I get these when the humans get Take away (Take Out). And then I love human biscuits (cookies) and sometimes if I nag enough my HuMum gives me a tiny piece – Chocolate Digestives are really great.
I love chocolate but someone told my Mum it is bad for me. I once stole a box of chocolates from the coffee table and ate most of them and was fine, so I think my Mum was misinformed!
I’ve heard that chocolate is bad for dogs too. I think to be on the safe side you should cut back on the chocolate digestives and forego the boxed chocolates Lulu!
What do dogs do for fun there?
They run around and chase each other and balls which they bring back to the human who threw them. I am not big on chasing balls. I will now and then but I don’t bring them back. However, I do bring any balls I find in the park or garden into the house and hide them. I also hide toys, bones and chews usually behind the sofa.
I also like to chase foxes for fun, there are lots in London, they run across my garden at night, and then the odd brave one appears during daylight. So far I’ve yet to catch one. I also chase cats and squirrels but they cheat and bolt up trees.
Most of all I love playing with children, I let them do anything with me. I am particularly obsessed by babies. My Mum has to stop me running up to babies in pushchairs (strollers) in the park and licking their hands and faces, for some reason the Mothers don’t like it. My Mum thinks I must have been bought up in a family with children.
and that is all as our Tiggy would say….
Thanks Lulu, sounds like you are living in a perfect spot for an urban city dog who likes to roam!
Editors note – Lulu’s other unique trait is that she is photo-elusive, hence the limited pictures in this report.