Bad Surprise – Short Break – Lucky

Bad Surprise

That Benny our dog had bladder cancer we knew since mid January 2017. A combined treatment with chemical, homeopathic and nature medication has been as successful that the ulcer of the cancer shrunk to half its size and seemed to be inactive. All 6 to 8 weeks a screening was made which brought invariably positive results. We have been very happy and nearly forgot completely about his cancer.



Then mid September out of the blue the bad news came that the cancer started to eat the ureter and it was strongly recommended to put him down immediately at the vet.

We entered the vet with Benny and left half an hour later only with collar and leash in our hands.

It has been a massive shock for both of us and I got a breakdown. Our boat was out of a sudden so empty and both of us ineffable lonely and sad. Benny’s ashes are now in a small red urn with us at our boat.

The reaction of the people around us concerning Benny’s death has been an incredible and exclusively positive surprise for us. We got flowers and cakes, hugs wherever we met them and they mourned with us. It really has been incredible.

In Facebook we got more than 50 hits with condolences and remembrances for Benny. Incredible!

Here in South Africa for most people dogs are part of the family. They protect the people and are welcomed and loved as loyal friends and companions. In Germany quite often they are just a fancy luxury article.

Short break

After three weeks living on board without Benny we decided to have a mini-break and take a step back from our daily life where we still saw Benny at every of our turns.

We booked a small 1 room cottage with ensued bathroom at a farm in Baviaanskloof, Karoo. Very basic but clean equipped with nice breakfast and dinner both of which was brought with a buggy from the farmerette – each time fresh, excellent and plenty.

We drove through the Baviaans canyon and relished the rough countryside at some few but impressive 4×4 routes.


During this 5 days break we met dogs all over and very slowly the idea about a new puppy started to grow in our minds.


Suddenly things started to happen very fast. Because over several weeks I had tears every day in my eyes, Richard’s decision was made: We need a puppy!

In Jeffreys Bay puppies, 8 weeks old, had been advertised and some days later we have been on our way to get our baby, a mix between Border Collie and Australian Cattle Dog.

On the way we haven’t had decided which puppy we would possibly take. From the remaining puppies only a small puppy boy has been interested in us. He snuggled into our arms and we got permanently wet kisses.

So decision was made and his name was immediately clear for us: Lucky!

We have been so lucky to find him and hope that he will be also lucky with us.

Boredom will not happen here anymore although we will refrain this year from big trips to spend our time on our new dog.

He keeps us mighty on the run and it is a huge difference to rear a puppy in a house with garden or at a boat

The first weeks day and night every 2 to 4 hours we had to bring him outside onto the jetty to do his business.

The jetty in front of our entrance as well as our aft deck got an artificial plastic lawn and all over are toys tied to.

The aft deck itself is covered under a green net to get some extra shade.

April 3th our puppy was 6 months old and gets on really well. And he still is growing. He is full of energy and even capable to entertain himself in the control room of Sea Rescue by disassembling garbage behind our backs while we are busy.

In this first puppy year we are completely engaged with dog school, training, walks and “play dates”.

End of the month we visited for 5 days a farm where he could get to know horses, cats, chickens,









Und schwimmen lernte.

Easter Sunday we walked together with app. 300 dogs in remembrance of the well known Navi dog “Just Nuisance”. It was impressive. Some of the dogs have been disguised and looked fancy. Lucky did this event with flying colours.




He is a real outdoor dog and enjoys it to be outside in fresh air. So he even likes to sleep outside on deck in any wind and weather, i.e. on my trampoline.

Over Christmas time Sven came to visit us, which has been wonderful. We enjoyed it so much to have had him some days with us. Lucky by then has still been a small puppy baby and Sven gave us help and advice in dog education.

This is as he looked like with his life jacket early January:

And this is Lucky with new life jacket in May 2018. He loves to be on the sea in our dinghy.

Lucky with his very dark, predominantly black face looks meanwhile quite dangerous. And with his remarkable size and strength he strikes anyway.


And exactly this is what we need here for our security.

Unfortunately the crime rate rises more and more. At the beach, in the mountains, wheresoever, you have to be cautious. Meanwhile they first stab you and look then if you maybe have a mobile or some money with you. Also this unfortunately is meanwhile everyday life.

Now the rangers send vehicles to the mountains on patrol to show presence and deter. But the areas are much too widespread to act in an effective way.

Some weeks ago a man has been stabbed to death to rob his bike: directly next to the main street, a police control close by. Nobody noticed anything.

9 people hiked in a group above Kalk Bay. Two strangers appeared and asked if they may join in and walked at the end of the group. At a small valley hidden from view they stabbed the others in front of them. Nothing more has to be said about this.

And we just start again with doing short walks and actually don’t want to be intimidated by this. We not even carry a backpack. Only an age-old mobile for emergencies is in our trousers pocket. And Lucky is next to us. He is a real herd dog, doesn’t leave from our side and is permanently scanning the surrounding.

He already guards our boat. If he finds something a bit fishy he immediately starts growling or gives a sharp and short bark so that we pay attention and look for it.

Unfortunately he tries to herd both of us in a way that he tries to nip, in first place me, from the back in the calves or trips me up by pushing one of his front paws between my legs to stop my foot.

Richard laughingly gives me the alternatives if Lucky tries to herd me as a sheep (as Border Collie) or a cow (as Australian Cattle Dog).


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