My darling boy Monty came into my life in the summer of 2017 and it has quite frankly, been true love ever since.
I was familiar with Miniature Schnauzers due to family members having owned a number of dogs of the breed. I was taken with their looks and their temperament, so decided that this was the breed of puppy I was going to look for. After looking around for responsible breeders in the area, I found a Kennel Club assured breeder in Burton who had a litter of puppies that were to be available for viewing only 3 weeks away from when I had made contact with her.
When the day arrived to take a look at them, it was quite nerve-wracking, Monty was to be my first ever dog, and I wasn't sure how one was meant to choose from a selection of adorable furry little puppies. The 3 available puppies that were left to choose from, spent a little time pottering around on the floor, all looking very cute, but also very similar. So how did I choose Monty? I will be honest with you, the only reason I chose him is because when my mum held him for the first time, he stuck his tongue out! It was the cutest thing I had ever seen and sealed the deal that he was the one to choose. All I had to do now, was wait 3 weeks till I could come back and take him home with me.
It was true love as soon as Monty came home with us. He travelled home in the back of the car, squeaking all the way. He soon made himself at home by promptly weeing on the kitchen floor.. at this point he was still named "puppy", as I was undecided on a name for him, what if I got it wrong?! I have no idea how people go about naming babies..
As with any first-time puppy owners, the situation comes with a steep learning curve, even if you have spent the intervening time between selecting a puppy and picking them up, furiously googling how to look after and train a puppy! As you can see in the photo above, he enjoyed his first bath in his new home!
With Christmas came Monty's first modelling job, for the family Christmas Card. I had carefully sewed him a nice red scarf to wear, which upon him going outside wearing it, he managed to tear it off and spent the next 10 minutes running around the garden like a lunatic. After abandoning that plan and employing my brother to tire him out a bit, (a tired dog is an easier to photograph dog!) I tried again and managed to get a suitable photo.
Monty always enjoys our holidays in the Lake District, here he is wearing a jumper I sewed him, on the rocks at Skelwith Bridge. I remember it was in June but was so cold I was wearing a woolly hat! On the right he is striking a pose on Post Knott fell which overlooks Lake Windermere and is a short walk up from Bowness.
Here he is on his first trip to the seaside, which was when we were on holiday in Norfolk. I think it's fair to say he enjoyed himself!He soon realised his mistake when he tried to drink seawater though!
During the lockdown in 2020, we had to do a few home grooming sessions. Monty normally goes to the groomers every 7 weeks, so I knew I was going to have to do him myself. With a dog grooming kit purchased off Amazon, some willing assistants and quite a bit of bribery, I think we managed to do a surprisingly good job.
Getting a dog was the best thing I ever did, he brings so much joy to all our lives, now I couldn't imagine life without him. You can read more about how Monty was the inspiration and start of my journey to becoming a pet portrait artist here.