Monday, 3 January 2022

Never write off a tough little terrier

Gail here:

So the year I didn't expect Bertie to see began with the two of us enjoying a brisk six mile walk in 'exhilarating' conditions along the southern shores of Loch Torridon. 

Not far shy of his twelfth birthday, deaf as a post, and a year and a half after he first showed signs of bladder cancer (for which he's still on palliative medication), you might imagine my dear little dog would have been happy to curl up in front of the log fire and doze contentedly listening to the stormy weather outside the Torridon cottage this weekend. 

Not a bit of it! I'm not going to deny that inside the house Bertie does spend most of his time at rest, preferably lying across my lap on the sofa. But when offered the opportunity for an outing in our glorious Highland landscape, he grabs it with both paws, undeterred by mud, rain and gale force winds.

I have no idea how long Bertie will retain his zest for life. I do know that, after a bad patch with 'bladder control issues' last August, I had a serious discussion with his vet about euthanasia. Then things settled down, and I learned better how to manage the problem. These past couple of months Bertie's condition has been stable and over Christmas we both had fun with our wee poodle guest Ella before she went home and we came across to Torridon for New Year. 

And I've given up making predictions about my tough little terrier!

PS Our New Year's Day walk was the 10 km 'Balgy Trail', the red line on the map below:


  1. Hari OM
    Oh look at that lovely new header pic... and indeed, terriers are built for the ruffty-tuffty lifestyle. Landrovers of the rover breed!!!

    The winds have been slower to build at this more middling part of the west coast - but since late last night it has been an absolute hoolie with blattering, almost pane-splintering rain. Very much of the sort that even Bertie might decide was beyond the pale!!! Hugs to you and wags to him. YAM (aunty) xxx

  2. how great that you had such a fab guest for christmas... and we know that terriers are da strongest pups of that slice earth...

  3. Us terriers can be tuff lil ones. Da mommas know from experience - ya can't count a terrier out.

  4. What good news about your health Bertie, and we're so glad that you enjoyed your walk. All that lovely fresh air and magnificent scenery must help you feel on tip top form.

    Inca xx

  5. You are amazing, Bertie, and we love your new header photo!

  6. When the post started I was afraid to read further. I am so happy to read this post and to know our sweet strong amzing Bertie still loves his hikes outdoors in all your cold weather. Love you Lots Bertie, keep on hiking and hiking and hiking

  7. You sure are living life to the fullest, Bertie. Who wouldn't want to go for a hike on that trail. We're so glad to hear you are doing well and we love your new header all snuggled up in Gail's lap.

  8. Gail this is absolutely beautiful and warms my entire being! Bertie shows us how to embrace the ride the merry go round of life's ups and downs with gusto. To enjoy it as the present it is. I too love your new Header. We awoke to what I imagine is the weather you described. It was mid 70's yesterday. Blustery weather moved in over night. 2.4" of rain fell in less than 24 hours and the temp is now about 40 with wet snow predicted. Just crazy
    Many hugs to you and your devoted Bertie

  9. Gail, now you are thinking just as Bertie does! It appears he has worked hard, staying close to you, to impart his wisdom. Good Boy.

  10. As long as he still is enjoying his super walks with his Gail, all is good! Enjoy everyday...even if there are gale-force winds!

    Your friends Rosie and Redford

  11. That tough little terrier will do things on his own terms:) And we hope he hangs in there for a very long time.

    Woos - Lightning, Misty, and Timber

  12. Bertie is a true champion and a little miracle.

  13. Bertie, from New Zealand we are wishing you and Gail all the best for 2022. You are currently out walking Enzo who has just turned 11 and doesn't like hills these days, though he'll say his lack of interest in going for long walks is due to the Auckland summer heat as he prefers to lie beside a fan or under a shady tree!