ving a stone’s throw away from each other, my border collie Rosie and Ann’s German shepherd Ette were destined to become best friends. For ten years, just the mention of the other’s name would prompt a surge of excitement. And they made sure that Ann and I came to the party. Our friendship ran parallel to theirs.

And now, with both our old girls gone, we have embarked on a journey with two new dogs. The other morning Ann rang asking if I’d mind if she stopped by with her eight-week-old GSD Jass. Not only did I not mind, I was delighted! I flew down the driveway in my pyjamas to unlock the gate and then back into the house to throw on some proper clothes (in all my excitement, I reversed the order). Our Labrador Lila trailed after me expectantly. Desperate to guess what was up and looking every which way for a clue.