6 years ago (2002), Waita made the dogs harnesses with bells on them. Keats gets very excited when he just even hears you moving them and turns into this whirling dervish, inciting his sister to also become this butt-wiggling black and tan furry fury. They KNOW it's time to go for a W.A.L.K. and come rain or shine, hell or high water, THEY are going! After a 5 minute struggle to put the harnesses on, it takes them about another 5 minutes or so to become settled enough to take them.
The bells came out again November 29th 2003, and because they know they're SO special and precious when they are out with the bells on, Keats and Karo have a hard time spreading themselves thinly amongst those they meet. Like the stars they know they are in their own minds, only a select few get blessed with a lick and a wiggle. But, as you can tell from this picture, they ARE having GREAT fun; just look at the grin on Karo's face (the far one) when she and her brother Keats were running off lead in the baseball park. The vast majority of people we met on our walk brought a smile to their face when they heard and saw them, and most made some comment with respect to the jingling bells, all positive!
The bells have become a tradition with us and it isn't just the dogs who enjoy the attention. As owners we take great joy from the comments we get from most all we meet on our walks. These bells have a way of 'softening' their appearance and make our Rott-n-ones seem much less intimidating.
Christmas 2005 saw the passing of the torch: now that Keats is no longer with us, our new boy 'Ace' has been seen repeatedly around the neighbourhood with 'Auntie Karo' bringing smiles to passers-by.
Here the two of 'em were being coaxed by Waita for some pictures with Santa in the yard of a house not far from us. It's very well decorated, plenty of animated displays, including an animated singing Santa that Ace just wasn't too sure about. And Karo just wanted to come see Dad....
The Christmas Bell 2006 tour of duty was a solo one for Ace, seeing as we lost Karo in April that year. We have already had a couple of trial runs late November and Ace gets REAL excited when he hears the bell harness come out of the closet.
For 2007 we're back to a duo again: Ace and Neka. I'll have to get some good shots of them, however their first time out together wearing their bells on December 1st was a bit of a disaster, just too excited and we had blowing snow to boot, not exactly prime picture taking weather.
Somehow we never got those shots I was hoping for, perhaps this year.