I thought I'd gradually give a bit of background about each of my hairy friends, as they keep appearing in my day to day ramblings.
First up is Rolf.
Meanwhile, although I would absolutely never condone his treatment, I got a brief understanding of why Rolf had been so badly beaten in the past. Knowing he was safely confined in the garden I ignored him and went round to my friends to calm down.
On my return he was very scared but of his own accord he crawled up to me on his belly and I treated him as normal. He sat leaning into me and I stroked him and we laid the foundations of something special.
He never carried out such whole-scale destruction again. He had a penchant for chewing through live cables for a while but he lived to tell the tale and I learned not to leave them exposed and available. His fear and nervousness made him really challenging to live with and to train, as tone was everything to this dog and he couldn't cope with the slightest sternness.
Patience prevailed. He's coming up six years old now and is a joy. Happy, obedient, confident and loyal, he's everything a dog can be. Another animal that taught me a lot about myself, I'm so glad he came to me. I've learned how to deal with fearful dogs and how effective kind and gentle handling can be.