We’ve just finished bottling this year’s wine, much to the dog’s relief. It’s a process drawn out over a few months from the initial crushing and several rackings to the final bottling, and not one the dog’s very keen on. I’m sure he has puppyhood memories of happily poking his nose into everything his humans were doing, and then suddenly being banished outdoors, or parked on a blanket and told to lie and stay. These days once he gets the telltale sniff of grapes, and after the obligatory attempt to eat any that have fallen on the ground – for which he gets short shrift, grapes being toxic to dogs – he does the canine equivalent of rolling his eyes, parks himself on the nearest sunny spot and dozes through the proceedings.
It’s not just that I’d rather not have him slobbering all over my future wine; it’s also that dog hair seems to have an intelligence all of its own and, once removed from its owner, will find its way into the most inaccessible and unlikely spots, seemingly effortlessly. I’m sure other dog owners will relate to my frequent bemusement at finding dog hair smirking up at me from places their dogs have never been.
German shepherds have a rather large surface area crammed full of hair, and no matter how regularly you brush them, seem to be able to dislodge a cloud of the aforementioned intelligent hair at will. And while there are a lot of unlikely sounding tastes mentioned on posh wine bottles that I’m sure don’t actually mean those substances are in the wine (tobacco-y for example, gives me visions of someone dropping cigarette butts into the brew at some stage) I’ve never ever seen dog hair mentioned as a discernable flavour, let alone as an ingredient.
 


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    A word from the Alpha Bitch

    Okay, I admit it – while I might scoff at dog owners who treat their Poopsies or Schnookums like babies, my dogs also think my name is Mum. I’d like to believe, however, that my dogs also know me as The Alpha Bitch, more commonly known in canine as “the bitch who must be obeyed, dogdammit!” - The AB

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