|Grey Wethers, Dartmoor|
I could see no reason for Susie's hackles, her sudden flight and her refusal to slow down as, shouting, I ran after her. She stopped only when she blundered into a bog.
Nine years later, in 1972, we moved into a new house in Kensington and she again sensed something, on the stairs to the kitchen. Unable to run, she simply lowered her haunches, trembled and howled.
I too sensed something disagreeable - a chill and a stench through which I could pass in a stride, of much the same height and volume as a human being.
One evening, encountering it on the stairs, I sat and talked to it. I said I had no way of remedying its misery. I wanted only that the house should be a happy place for me and my dogs.
By coincidence no doubt, the column of cold and mortal stink disappeared, and never again was Susie so disquieted.
I have seen other instances of dogs seeming to have a sixth sense. I'm sure my dogs have had an understanding of illness in human beings.
Hecate, my blue whippet, was responsible for a small miracle when an old friend named Margaret, struck dumb and paralysed by a stroke, languished in hospital. The Sister in the hospital said, "It's only a matter of time."
On my next visit I smuggled Hecate in under my overcoat, pretending to have a broken arm. Margaret's eyes widened, there was the faint hunt of a smile, and for the first time since the stroke, she reached out, to touch the little dog - Hecate, usually a wild wriggler, settled next to her.
We managed this a second day before being discovered by the Sister. But it mattered not, for we had brought about the miraculous first signs of Margaret's recovery."
Other Dog Stories:
Dambusters Dog Whose Ghost Haunts RAF Scampton
The Psychic Power Of Dogs
Daisy The Gentle Ghost Who Loves Dogs