Ollie prepares for a dog’s life now Biffo’s on the scene
The story so far: Although she is expecting their second child, Lizzie and Ollie have gone through with the purchase of another addition to the family, a sad-eyed Basset Hound pup they’ve named Biffo. Ollie’s really not sure it’s been a wise move, and tries to undo the decision…
Wimbledon was on live TV. Novak Djokovic was on match point. Ollie was on the edge of his seat. And that probably made it a bad time for four-year-old daughter Alice to totter in front of the screen carrying a basket in which rode Biffo, a newly-acquired Basset Hound pup.
It meant that Ollie didn’t see the Djokovic shot that beat Roger Federer and made the crowd roar, startling Biffo, who leapt out of the basket, making Alice fall, bump her head, and start to cry.
For the 50th time that day Ollie wondered why they’d gone through with the purchase of the pup. It had seemed like a good idea when he’d been talked into it, which was before Biffo had been born, and before they’d discovered that his wife Lizzie was going to have another baby. Sure, they’d known the arrival of a dog would be life changing, but the reality of the decision seemed much tougher than he’d expected when they’d been doing no more than discussing it.
He’d broached the subject of a U-turn on the puppy purchase with Lizzie, but she was having none of it. It would be good for Alice and the baby, she said; it would make them complete as a family, she said; and changing their mind now would upset the pup, she said.
Making it all add up
Ollie didn’t buy into the last point in her argument at all, and was no more than lukewarm on the others. Using his free-to-download money management app Solo Expenses, he created some fictitious bills to show just how much being dog owners was likely to cost. The total, when he’d factored in food, vet bills, toys and accessories and kennel fees (for when they went on holiday), was mildly alarming. But he knew when he was beaten when he held out his smartphone for Lizzie’s inspection, showing the report he’d created in no time at all
“Look at this lot; just look at it,” he pleaded. “And I haven’t even factored in inflation or the price we paid for him! Perhaps we ought to take him back to the breeder. What do you say?”
Lizzie wasn’t prepared to be at all ruffled. “You’re right about the money, of course,” she said, in her best calm voice. “And you’ve proved time and again just how effective Solo Expenses is for keeping track of money – but what it can’t do is record what Alice and the baby are going to get from having a dog. It will teach them about responsibility for another life, they’ll all amuse each other, and it will give us all more joy in our lives. You can’t put a number on that, but I know it will be good for all of us. “Anyway, if we sent him away now, Alice would be so upset. And so would I. Did you know Andy Murray has a dog? She’s called Maggie May, and she’s on Twitter.”
Game, set and match. Biffo was staying, and Ollie would have to adapt. He started by dashing into the kitchen for a cloth and the sterilising spray. Biffo, still not properly housetrained, was relieving himself in front of the TV, so Ollie would have to wait until later to watch Djokovic successfully defend his Wimbledon title.