This week it was Miss Dog who decided that our lives lacked variety. There is something nasty in the wood, we have come to believe. She has developed a tendency to whine at the door, and when let out, vanish for some considerable time, with a great deal of placatory wagging on her return. I suspect that someone has shot a deer and there is a depot of unwanted giblets and so forth quietly rotting in an out of the way spot. Anyway, the dear little animal did a runner this morning, and when she returned she was seen to be missing a square inch or so of fur and skin from her shoulder. I thought she’d damaged herself on wire, and she was hauled off to the vet, where it transpired that she had a patch of dermatitis, probably caused by an earlier minor injury, and squeezing under or through something had knocked the scab off, fur and all. She was given an antibiotic. These things can cause trouble if the animal can lick at the wound and prevent it healing, but this particular lesion is high on her shoulder where she can’t reach, so it should sort itself out in a few days. The Metacam soup routine is still working, by the way.