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Four legged friends

Updated on March 5, 2015

Our house

For the last few weeks I've been thinking about some of the dynamics of our families and especially with our four legged friends. We normally call the four legged parts of our families 'pets' but the truth is Barney, Bubble and Rosie are much more than just pets, they're part of the family and have some interesting traits.

I want to take a few minutes to tell you about some of the 'little things' they do that make them so special to us. Who knows maybe as you're reading you'll see something of the animals you've known in the way they behave, after all they are part of the family.

  1. Barney
  2. Bubble
  3. Rosie

Just some of the things that our friends with four legs get up to.

Rogues gallery

Barney. "Come on Dad, lets have some fun"
Barney. "Come on Dad, lets have some fun"
Bubble "Yeah, right, whatever you say"
Bubble "Yeah, right, whatever you say"
Rosie "Bring it on!"
Rosie "Bring it on!"


A cute little Cairn Terrier. for those not in the know (as I wasn't until he turned up at the local SPCA) they are closely related to the West Highland Terrier (the only difference is the 'Westie' is either black or white where the Cairn is a beautiful (you knew I'd say that didn't you?) golden color.

We got Barney when he was about five weeks old and he was so small he couldn't get up the steps to the house (Cairn terriers stand 12 inches off the ground and about 24 inches long when fully grown) but that didn't stop him trying.

I've written another hub about Barney before that has a lot of stuff about him, but this is more about some of the funny things that make our four legged friends special.

Barney's so small that he's had to prioritize what he's going to put into his life, two things don't fit, pain and fear are not things known to him!!

When he was about ten weeks old we started puppy school with him. My wife took him once and came back swearing she'd never take him again! Apparently in the class there were four other dogs that didn't take too kindly to him. A six month old Boxer, A German Shepherd (three months old), A Labrador and another dog. Come the time to socialize the dogs the owners let them off the lead and they all made a beeline for Barney who thought that being the center of attention was great. The ensuing melee was pandemonium with bits of furniture flying everywhere (Did I mention this was all in a vets surgery?). When they finally parted the dogs my wife brought him home absolutely soaked in saliva from the other dogs "He's your dog, you clean him!!!" I was told in no uncertain terms!!

His latest trick is he loves to use our lounge as his own personal racetrack and it's great for chasing cats around! It's also great for trying to avoid Dad putting him to bed at night!

Barney sleeps in a cage in the lounge. but he loves spending time out on the deck at night. I used to work nights and that was when Barney took it on himself that my wife and daughter needed protecting at night, I was working so I couldn't be there so he would sit out on the deck guarding the back of the house, he still sits out there but makes sure he can see me so he knows he doesn't have to be on guard.

However our lounge has three entry points that lead to other parts of the house and other doors to the outside, you guessed it, if one is open then the race is on!! Round and round we go until all access points are sealed and the only place he can go is the 'pen'

By the way Barney's breed are working dogs that were bred for hunting rats and vermin, until this week the mouse score in the house was Barney four, Bubble one catch and release (more on that later) and Rosie likes birds! but that's changed 9more later)

Anyone thinking about getting a pet I can highly recommend the Cairn Terrier, they are faithful, intelligent and a whole lot of fun, the average backyard is plenty big enough for them and a whole lot of fun.

Recently we took him to the beach, he loved walking in the sand. but wasn't too impressed at the wet stuff that kept washing over him. A huge amount of fun and an ideal dog for a family

Where we walked

Whakatane in New Zealand.
Whakatane in New Zealand.
White Island
White Island

Bubble, the Matriarch

Bubble is very much the matriarch of the family. If her Cat years were transferred into Human years she'd be approaching sixty but don't think that old age is starting to slow this cat down!

Actually as I write this she's snuggled down next to the wife on the other seat in the lounge. Barney's decided he wants a sleep and he's put himself to bed in his pen and the two are chilled out. That's the way they've been in the seven years we've had them. Bubble actually arrived first eight years ago. She was only a kitten then and there were two of them (Bubble and Squeak) sadly Squeak isn't with us anymore but he's remembered with fondness.

A couple of years ago we were woken up by scratching noises under the bed. It took a minute to register that it wasn't a dream but the noise was definitely there, it was 3am so the noise was really strange. Climbing out of bed we both looked under the bed and there was Bubble watching a Mouse under the bed. The concentration was intense and I'm sure she wasn't even aware we were watching.

Instead of killing the Mouse she was playing with it. At one point she caught the Mouse and had the whole creature in her mouth, then she let it go again! As soon as we saw that all I heard was "Right, that's it" Jodie disappeared and re-appeared seconds later with Barney who was told "Deal with it!" One second later the Mouse was no more!

Her other habit is that she loves to go out at night, but if there's no open door (or window) she'll find a way in, even if it means scratching the window until you wake the occupants at 2am in the morning! We've learned to leave a window open. Aren't animals supposed to be trained by their Human owners? Our seem to train their Humans!

Our "Pad"
Our "Pad"

Your pets

What pets do you have?

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Rosie is the feisty one of the three. She's a long haired tortoise shell and not really a people Cat, but she does care for us. She showed that the other say when out of concern for the grocery bills she began bringing home some of the things she'd hunted. Five mice!

Sunday morning is my lie in time, that is if Rosie and Bubble aren't around. Bubble will make her way and sit on my chest pinning, if that doesn't wake me then the next step Rosie to get up next to the alarm clock (that goes off at 7am) and use her bushy tail to tickle my mustache. If that doesn't work then she simply leans over and meows loudly in my ear!

Rosie also recently caused mayhem when she decided to help with our Meat supply by trying to teach us how to hunt. For two days she was bringing home her donation to the grocery bill. Five mice, all left conveniently so that we'd see them and thank her, she still waiting for the thanks!

And finally

These are just a few of the many stories I could tell about these three little gems. As I sit here I realize that they own us as much as we own them. We look after and care for Barney, Bubble and Rosie but they in their own way look after us as well, even if it is trying to provide the meat we don't want!

Guarding us, Waking us or even providing for us they are precious.

These are our stories, but I bet you have just as many stories about your own pets. Why not take a few moments to tell us about them.

If you enjoyed this hub Barney's written one too, he tells his side of the story. Tell us about your pets in the comments below.


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    • lawrence01 profile imageAUTHOR

      Lawrence Hebb 

      3 years ago from Hamilton, New Zealand


      Sorry its taken me so long to reply. Hang in there with your dog, she'll work out what it means to play eventually. I can say that from experience as we grew up rescuing animals. It takes time but they do work it out and its worth the work.

      Rosie is a bit of a challenge at times as I think she was born wild and cats never really lose that wild streak but most nights shevlets me go 'nose to nose' and even though she isn't my cat its still special.



    • Besarien profile image


      3 years ago

      Your four legged friends are a beautiful addition to the family. I am a pet person myself. We only have one dog now, a sweet half Golden/half mutt rescue from a very bad home- she doesn't get the concept of play because people threw things at her to hurt her. I am also still missing my lovely, intelligent, snuggly, vocal male Bombay cat who died last year of intestinal cancer. It was a joy getting to know your Rosie, Bubble, and Barney!

    • lawrence01 profile imageAUTHOR

      Lawrence Hebb 

      3 years ago from Hamilton, New Zealand


      I love your description. Our animals are so much more than pets. They become family

    • GrimRascal profile image


      3 years ago from Overlord's Castle

      Awww...cute animals. I have five 4-legged friends here (dogs) and a 2-legged cow (my cousin). xD

    • lawrence01 profile imageAUTHOR

      Lawrence Hebb 

      3 years ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

      As the saying goes 'Dogs have masters. Cats have slaves! ' Bubble is very much in charge but Rosie does her own thing anyway.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 

      3 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      This is definitely what they do. We do not own them, though, they own us. NOW who has the most sense?

    • lawrence01 profile imageAUTHOR

      Lawrence Hebb 

      3 years ago from Hamilton, New Zealand


      Barney loved it! To me that's what was so amusing! Barney is a typical boy in many ways. He loves the rough and tumble and generally causing havoc but we love him and the cats for all the joy they bring

    • PegCole17 profile image

      Peg Cole 

      3 years ago from Dallas, Texas

      Funny description of your furry family members. Ours are family, too. Too bad the other dogs tried to take out your Barney at the training. Good thing he wasn't hurt.

    • lawrence01 profile imageAUTHOR

      Lawrence Hebb 

      3 years ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

      Heidi. They keep us 'on our toes ' Barneys latest thing is every night when I get home instead of running to greet me he hides his bone (he knows I'mgoing to water our veggies and doesn't like his bone getting wet) then he comes to greet!!

      Glad you enjoyed the hub

    • heidithorne profile image

      Heidi Thorne 

      3 years ago from Chicago Area

      Thanks for sharing your 4-legged family with us! :) Awesome pics. Voted up, funny & interesting!

    • lawrence01 profile imageAUTHOR

      Lawrence Hebb 

      3 years ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

      Tobusiness. Jack Russels are s favorite of mine. If we didn't have Barney we'd want a Jack Russel! (st least I would) Barney is just slightly bigger but just as loyal and full of energy.

      We originally got Barney as my dog (Jodie went more for cats) but as Jodie is home more with him he's more his Mums dog if you know what I mean!

      There's so much more I could tell but we all have stories of our pets That's what makes them special

    • lawrence01 profile imageAUTHOR

      Lawrence Hebb 

      3 years ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

      Jodah Thanks for the visit. I know what you mean about not needing an alarm clock. Bubble also sits on my chest meowing while Rosie is doing her thing. They both then make sure I make it to the cat food! Any attempt to deviate results in loud protests!

    • tobusiness profile image

      Jo Alexis-Hagues 

      3 years ago from Lincolnshire, U.K

      A delightful read. We tend to go for Jack Russell Terriers, my husband once had a little Yorkie. We moved to the Grenadines back in the 90s and stayed for four wonderful years. We were the proverbial soft touch for collecting strayed dogs, all different characters, but only one cat. We also kept sheep, goats, pigs, and chickens. I'm currently attempting to put it all in a book. This is well written, an enjoyable read.

    • Jodah profile image

      John Hansen 

      3 years ago from Queensland Australia

      Enjoyable hub Lawrence. I love stories about pets. Your animals sound like wonderful family members. We have three dogs(recently lost a dog Amber), four cats and 12 chickens. The cats and dogs especially have individual personalities. Basil(cat) wakes me at the same time each morning 7am by sitting on my chest and meowing "feed us".....same thing at exactly 4pm..lets me know (as do all the dogs) that it's dinner time. I never have to check the clock they are always spot on. I can't imagine life without pets. I had more....two turkeys but a carpet python took them....I actually found it climbing up the tv cabinet the night before last....that was fun removing a 10 foot snake from the lounge room with three dogs trying to help. Voted up.

    • lawrence01 profile imageAUTHOR

      Lawrence Hebb 

      3 years ago from Hamilton, New Zealand


      Last night we closed the Windows because of high winds. Guess who got woken up at 1am to let Bubble in!

      Glad you enjoyed it

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 

      3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      I love it and I totally agree. We have two dogs, one cat, two rabbits, thirty quail and six chickens. Guess who runs the household? The cat of course. There is no doubt this is her domain and whoa to anyone who doesn't understand that. LOL

    • lawrence01 profile imageAUTHOR

      Lawrence Hebb 

      3 years ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

      Thanks favored. Yes having animals in the house can be a lot of fun. One of the interesting parts is that during the week I'm up around 5.30am and the animals are all waiting for me. Bubble and Rosie usually escort me to the pantry for their food (literally Bubble in front and Rosie behind!!) and Barney as soon as he's fed goes and checks the outside of the house, but I often tell them they are the perfect animals for us in so many ways.

      Glad you enjoyed the hub

    • favored profile image

      Fay Favored 

      3 years ago from USA

      Your three babies surely have enriched your life, some more than others (thank you Rosie for the donation LOL). I never tire of reading stories of how pets have trained their owners.


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