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Molly, An English Pointer Puppy in France
The Story of our English Pointer, Molly
This is the story of our French English pointer who shares our life at Les Trois Chenes farmhouse bed and breakfast in Videix, Limousin, deepest rural France. There's never a dull moment in this seemingly sleepy little community and Molly, I think it's fair to say, makes a good contribution to our busy lifestyle.
Pointers, the supreme hunting dog, make great family pets!
Long before we moved to France, I dreamed of owning a dog, and trailed through the Internet trying to decide on the breed for us. I knew that we were looking for a place in rural France with barns, out-buildings and land so that we could create a guest house and holiday cottage and run paining holidays and so that we would be able to give a larger dog the space and exercise it needs. On the one hand, as a novice dog-owner I wasn't willing to take on a really big dog, and didn't really want a lap dog either. I did have, however, quite fixed ideas of what I liked in a dog - and what I disliked. Here's my list:
- not too big or too small
- short hair - less mess on carpets, no grooming
- hard mouth - dislike slobber
- quiet - I hate interminable barking or yapping
- good temper - my son was then aged 5
- athletic - like a slim, sleek dog
- beauty - after all I am an artist
- healthy - wanted to avoid over-bred dogs that have genetic disorders. No need to run up avoidable vets bills
- sensible - love red setters, but all the information about the breed suggested they are too flighty - one neurotic member of the family is enough - I need a dog to keep my feet firmly on the ground
- intelligent and easy to train. Well, Molly is intelligent and, as for the training, I think 99% of any blame for a badly trained dog lies with the owners and not the dog.
They say that people look like their dogs. In my case I knew how I wanted to look - slim, elegant, sleek with clean lines and a well-defined musculature - I chose the Posh Spice of the dog world. The English Pointer was my ideal dog (but I'm still waiting for the resemblance to developed).
How we bought our pointer puppy
All the above was really day-dreaming, the reality to be saved for some time in the not too near future when we were solvent, settle and in control of our lives. Then fate stepped in. Shortly after we arrived in Videix, I went to the local electrical shop in Rochechouart to buy a TV, and there, next to the counter, was a pointer just like Molly. My son loved this dog. It was quiet, affectionate and patient with the attentions of a child. Before I had cottoned on to what was happening, my little boy, never a shrinking violet, marched up to the counter and asked if we could buy the dog. Of course, she wasn't for sale, but she was about to have pups and they offered to give us one if we wanted.
We were not settled, solvent or in control of our lives, but on the other hand, it all seemed a bit too much of a coincidence to totally ignor. I swear I didn't tell my son about my secret plan to buy a dog, let alone a pointer! So I went home, discussed it with my husband and then decided to take the puppy. After all, my son was an only child and lonely. Molly was to be his 'little sister.' We said YES!
It was love at first sight! The owner of Molly's mum kindly allowed us to take our son to meet his puppy as soon as her eyes were open. It was love at first sight - on the part of my son at least! Just look at his face.
Molly's beautiful chocolate coloured sister isn't in the picture. It's a pity. She was the pup the owner chose to keep - and I don't blame him.
Would the puppy and the boy survive each other?
Molly was one wild pup from the start and our son was a bit on the rough side too. We closed our eyes and prayed that neither would inflict any real damage on the other. They had wonderful rough and tumble times together.
Luckily neither suffered irreparable damage and they both lived to tell the tale!
Molly grew up into a beautiful pointer
Here's Molly and our cat Saffron. We don't have many good pictures of Molly from this time, I guess she just moved too fast. You can see a few more of her in my articles How Not To Choose An English Pointer Pup. Suffice to say that after a few years, we were in a position to let Molly have pups. We couldn't wait to have lots of little Molly's running around the house.
Finding a Mate for Molly
If you are looking for a father for your pups, try to do better than I did when you look for a mate for your dog. Our chimney sweep had long been an admirer of Molly and came around regularly to clean our chimney and to propose his dog as a suitable suitor. He said the dog came from good stock, had all its papers and, as a hunter himself and French to boot, I assumed that he knew the ropes. NOT A BIT! Do your homework and see the pedigree papers for yourself. It is worth selecting a good mate for your dog. In his favour, Ulio has a great lineage full of champions and is trained to hunt.
Molly played hard to get. Twice we had the dog over after having carefully calculated the 10th day after coming on heat, and twice we failed to see any action other than a great deal of growling and baring of teeth on Molly's part. Time and timing were of the essence, after all our dog was getting on in years, so we decided to have Ulio to stay for the entire on-heat period - a nice two weeks holiday at a B&B. My main worry was that Ulio had, to my mind, a short snout, and was much too slobbery.
Soon it became obvious that Molly was expecting. She had lost that fabulous figure and was clearly rounding out. It did slow her down a little, but not much. Time passed and we were all looking forward to the arrival of the little ones, but in the event it wasn't the wonderful birth we were all looking forward to, instead it became a nightmarish trauma; you can read more in The Story of our Pointer Pups. Lots of pictures of our adorable pups - Molly's tale does have a partly happy ending.
Molly has been quitea naughty dog, though, over the years. Read my Naughty Dog Stories to find out just what she got up to!
- Painting courses at Les Trois Chenes B and B, Limousin, France
Art and painting holidays in France. Bed and breakfast holiday cottage at Videix Haute-Vienne Limousin France near the Dordogne and Charente. Between Limoges and Angouleme. Near Rochechouart and Saint Junien.
How to find us
More ado about dogs
More about our life in Limousin
- Les Trois Chenes Profile in Pictures
Painting holidays at Les Trois Chenes Bed and Breakfast Videix, Limousin, France. 87600. We also have a gite, or self catering holiday cottage so there are many ways to spend a wonderful holiday in the French countryside. We are ten minutes from Roch
- The Puppy and the Peach
Our pet dog, Molly, a beautiful English pointer, gave birth to three lovely pointer pups earlier this year. The birth was traumatic, ending with a caesarian. A dutiful, if tough mother, we learned many lessons about nature and nurture! Read more abou
- The Story of our Pointer Puppies
Here I am living the good life at our farm house bed and breakfast in deepest rural Limousin, France, and our pet dog, Molly,an English pointer, makes a fair contibution to...