Alison Goulding: ‘The whole grisly truth’

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WITH the summer here we’ve been spending more and more time at the beach.

 As well as the sea air there’s another massive feelgood factor ...

 Hundreds of dogs running around and having a great time splodging in the waves – I love to watch them.

 Every time we drive home there’s a part of me that wishes for one of my own, especially now I’m older and wiser and have watched at least three whole episodes of the Dog Whisperer.

 Having owned a dog in the past who I was incapable of training to do anything other than demolish the house and kill birds, I want to believe that next time would be different.

 So seeing Cesar Millan on roller blades getting pulled along by a harmonious pack of pitbulls gives me the kind of blind confidence that usually leads to disaster.

 In reality, if I had a pack of fighting dogs towing me along it would most likely end in me having my face grated off on the tarmac.

 But lately I’ve been thinking I could handle one normal dog, especially when I visit my friend Emma and realise she juggles her job with two dogs, a horse and a cat!

 Thankfully a press release dropped into my inbox the other day which got me thinking twice.

 It was about the latest must-have accessory for dog owners – biodegradable poo bags called, enticingly, Mutts Butts’ bags.

 Invented by golden retriever owner Julie Binns, they come in three different thicknesses, because ‘different sized dogs do different sized poos!’

 Gross. The press release was also full of many horrible facts such as ‘The UKs 8 million dogs produce 1,200 tonnes of poo every day.’

 I couldn’t tear my eyes away until I’d read the whole grisly truth.

 It bought me back to earth with a bang as I remembered that while it is lovely to watch a dog tearing around on the beach, it is a lot less fun when you’re picking up steaming mess at 6am on a winter morning.

 Which reminds me of a story my friend told me.

 A year ago she became the proud owner of a beautiful greyhound. Taking him for his first walk she was astonished by the sheer quantity he could produce in one sitting, so to speak.

 “I didn’t know where to start with it,” she said, “It was like a mini roundabout.”

 Four bags later and she’d done her duty as a responsible dog owner.

 So despite the pangs, I will not be signing up for a dog just yet. Mutts Butts have reminded me it’s not just the odd game of fetch you need to worry about.

I WAS seriously impressed with Friday’s Royal Wedding, and watched the whole thing about eight times with my mouth hanging open, soaking up all the details.  

 Kate’s dress was a knockout, and I read somewhere that she even did her own makeup – she must have nerves of steel to manage perfect eyeliner on a day like that.  

 My new guilty pleasure now is pouring over copies of Hello! at all the guests’ outfits and wondering if Warehouse is still selling the summer dress Kate bought for her honeymoon ... I’m sure I’ll return to normal soon, or at least until their next public appearance.