Furry friend

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Name: Norman Stanley
Breed: Standard wire-haired dachshund
Likes: Humans, bitches, being out and about, jumping up, belly rubs, more belly rubs
Not so keen on: male dogs, belly rubs stopping, having to go home
Rating: 6/5

I honestly thought he had an especial soft spot for me, because whenever we meet him and I call his name he’s there in a flash (dragging his person behind him if necessary), leaping all over my jeans and then throwing himself onto his back for a belly rub. It transpires, however, that I’m not actually the Dachshund Whisperer: he behaves like this with anyone who encourages him.

Norman Stanley may be a bit of a strumpet but I love him, which is why he gets the nod tonight. On any other day I’d have posted the hairy-footed flower bee in my extra, which I spotted on the stachys as R and I crossed the front garden on our way back in from our walk, and which I was delighted to capture cleaning its remarkable proboscis. I had the big gear with me at the time, so this was taken at 560mm – a fact I mention because it’s not the easiest thing to get a decent shot of something so small using that much lens, and I’m always a bit smug when I manage it.