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Both our Nicholas and Eleonora (Nick and Nora) will turn 13 this month, Nora is one week older than Nicky. Strange they have been with us since they were 6 weeks old in Rome. We knew them or first saw them at 2 weeks with their respective Moms and other siblings in Capena.

Both have loads of personalities and each very different. Nick loves his routine and wants you to stick to it and not change anything. Nora is the fighter, constant guard dog 24/7 and track hunting dog. She too loves her routine but has a very different one from Nick.

Nick loves the sunshine, the hotter the better. He is not as friendly as Nora, more distant with people. However if he likes you then you are his buddy and you cannot leave ever. Nora is the I love everybody, kiss,kiss and plays coquette with people for cuddles.

They both love their treats and expects lots of them, fact is they get more treats from Will than from me and they know that, so I do not get pestered about treats, they simply go to Mister pushover. Treats are multiple, bits of celery, bits of carrots, bits of cheese usually gouda, pieces of kibble, small piece of ice, anything I chop in terms of vegetables, they want a taste and the best is the liver treats home made by Will, they go nuts for that one. But they have developed a system, knowing that they get a treat when they return from a walk, they will pretend they want to go out, open the door and no I am not going but you give me a treat now. It seems that the simple thought of going out is good enough to warrant a treat, in their book.

The other funny thing is Nicky who insist on sleeping next to me on my chair in our living room. He will even fetch me to come and will be very insistent about it and look put out if I ignore him. So while he will sleep for an hour on the chair with me in the evening, he will wake up at 10pm and look at me, this look means I have to go out for my evening walk. Upon returning he wants his treat and then will make a fuss to go to bed. This is where we have a conversation in French, in fact all the words we use with them are in French, manger, maison, dodo, biscuit. Sometimes we don’t even have to make a full sentence, the simple Veux-tu … (Do you want) Nicky knows this mean manger (to eat), no need to say it. They know where to sit while they wait for their meal, do it does not stop Nicky to wimper, Nora is usually quiet.

So at 10 pm he goes to his bed and I bring the biscuit, of course Nora wants a biscuit also but she is not going to bed at all, too early for her. He then proceeds to fall asleep for the night.

Nora on the other hand always wants to nestle into the sofa all wrapped up in her blanket, but she knows that she like Nicky must to go her bed. She is not happy about that and always tries to negotiate. Once in bed, lately she started to whimper like a little baby, so we go in to see what his wrong, nothing of course but she wants another treat. Nicky of course wakes up and he too wants a treat. So lately it is up to 4 treats before she goes to bed and stops her whining. With Nora it is always about pushing the envelope and getting her way. It is very difficult to get angry at her, she knows which buttons to push to get what she wants. Nicky is not so clever about that, much more, hey its my routine follow it, approach.

It’s home made real liver treat time, pieces are the size of small brownies.

Funny enough they cannot be walked together, though in Rome we did with no problems, once in Canada that changed. Nicky can be super aggressive with other dogs either with Nora present or not. Nora on her own barks at other dogs and is not sociable. However with horses, we have them on the street in the old town or with cats she is indifferent, pays little attention to them. Crows which are plentiful here, she will chase but Crows are not easily intimidated and they have sharp nasty beaks, so we keep her away from them.

We want more liver, more!!!!!