8TH AUGUST 2011. NOT A GOOD START TO THE WEEK.

It was raining hard with a cold wind when I got up and found my conservatory filled with goldfinch feathers and the headless body of that attractive little bird.  Moving the chair to hoover up the mess, I found junior cat caressing a dead dunnock that she was waiting the moment to play with her catch.  Having cleared up all the feathers I turned round and found one of the dog’s had left a calling card on the mat despite all having been pushed out into the garden for easing of springs,etc.  Then I saw the puddle.  Thankfully the floor is tiled but it is worrying that dogs that were fully house trained and would not dream of making a mess have started this unacceptable routine every now and then.  I’ve taken the main culprit for a check up and its not physical only behavioural.  Not only do I still need an answer to who is chewing my courgettes, I need to discover how I can get particularity one dog back to a clean routine and finally dispense with the bucket and mop! If any one can recommend a dog psychologist,  I’d be very interested. My domestic woes shrink into insignificance compared with the polar bear mauling incident.  The boy who punched the animal on the nose and had some of its teeth removed from his skull is fortunate indeed.  I did the Spitsbergen trip some years ago and watched bears on the shore whilst we bobbed around a safe distance away in Zodiacs, those indispensable, hard to get into and out of;  inflatable boats.  We are always accompanied by leaders with rifles and bear security was most important.  From June to September the sea ice melts sufficiently to deny bears of their staple diet of seal.  They become ravenous and will take enormous risks which was plain to see when we were shown  a video of what lengths a polar bear will go to assuage hunger. It was photographed swimming to the side of a ship and managed to haul itself up the side and stick its snout through an open porthole.  All this was caught on camera from inside the ship and it clearly showed that the bear meant business. My Zodiac was too far away to witness most of the nasty little drama when the female and three cubs failed to notice the presence of a male. The group was foraging on a shore littered with white whale bones when the male, a huge creature lunged at a cub and dragged it behind a rock where it proceeded to kill and devour the little animal.  The female could do nothing but beat a hasty retreat with the remaining pair knowing that they were not safe either.  This exceptional behaviour was captured on several cameras and later, was of interest to the Norwegian Authorities as all bear activities are fully recorded by them.  Any bear death is taken very seriously and heavy fines imposed if any one is judged to have behaved irresponsibly.  With hardly a chance to feed since June and now in August, surely it was madness to camp out on a glacier in a confined tent without mounting a guard. Any bear would have picked up human scent from miles away and the party was a a meal in waiting.  Hind sight is an exact science but it seems to me, the boys were badly let down and should have expected better protection.  The loss of a wonderful animal only obeying its instinct to survive is truly sad too.  As I witnessed, the life of a bear is harsh at all stages and those animals deserve respect too. Moving on from my wonderful memories of Longyearbyen and the Norwegian Arctic and back to reality of yet more dog poo!.  Last Saturday morning I went to meet Brian who had rung me to complain that a dog poo bin had been moved to another location in the Level Road park and residents were complaining.  I learnt from the Flintshire litter manager that the bin was regularly used to deposit bottles and cans as it was located near to where youths congregated for their drinking activities and the crews who had to empty the bins had complained. The park is situated deep into the heart of a residential area and of course is used to exercise dogs.  “They bring them by car”, a resident told me and some of them don’t bother to clear up after their animals.  Several walkers were in the park &  doing the right thing.  We had a chat about poo bin locations.  The solution is to have more than one as its a large area with four ways in and out.  Dog litter operators can only deal with so many bins a day and re-siting a bin costs £100 so there is always a cost. However, I will press hard for one more for every one’s sakes.  I’m pleased that a goal post that our Leisure Services staff installed some weeks ago to cut down complaints from residents of footballs crashing into their gardens and smashing fences has worked. Children and drink is a never ending problem.  I must now attend to a sad letter received from the Secretary of the Gladstone Bowls Club seeking help to protect the club from marauding youths who gather in large numbers to drink and do damage.  There must be a solution?  Who supplies them and what do parents do who must know what their children are up to?  That recent programme, “Dying for a drink” had the right idea.  Prices must be increased because ifs not just the social nuance but the damage youngsters are inflicting on themselves and we all pick up the tab for this problem. The scenes of burning and rioting in London are so distressing. I’ve worked in Tottenham and was the officer i/c in Enfield, a quiet northern suburb and what is happening is unbelievable.  I am so thankful that never had to deal with anything so violent and stressful in my 30 year police career.  We are living in very difficult times. Mrs May should swallow her pride and get the water cannons over from Northern Ireland  ASAP.  The law abiding public must be protected too.

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