Do you clean your pets’ teeth? – Verity Lush

Verity Lush spends more money on her pets than her children - she even cleans their teeth.
Verity Lush spends more money on her pets than her children - she even cleans their teeth.

My life has been entirely taken over by pets in the past week. We have two cats and two dogs. I’m not counting hamsters and so forth because they are enclosed and cause me far less hassle.

Due to being on holiday and therefore around the house more, I have come to realise how much of my day revolves around vacuuming up pet hair, washing pet bedding after they do unspeakable things in it, picking up pet poo, and exercising pets, feeding and putting monthly de-fleaing and worming treatment either on or in pets.

I also worked out how much I spend a month on pet insurance and the aforementioned treatments, coupled up with the cost of feeding the beasties, entertaining them, getting them groomed and even – even – brushing their teeth.

I could probably own another car for this. They cost more than my kids. At the last vet visit, said vet encouraged Mr Lush and I to start brushing the dogs’ and cats’ teeth.

We invested £15 in a toothbrush with a handle the length of a broom and some chicken-flavoured toothpaste.

‘This will save you in the long run,’ they said. ‘Simply pop some paste on and give them a little scrub,’ they said.

Well they obviously didn’t say it loud enough for the dogs to hear. Both dogs looked at us in the same manner I stare at my husband when he suggests a new pet for us to acquire.

Both dogs also kept their little lips tightly shut, clamped together in a way that quite clearly spelt NO. I fumbled about for a bit to no avail and then tried the cats.

Surprisingly, the cats – hoighty toighty little creatures for much of the time – were more agreeable and some brushing took place.

While we were engaged in this success and subsequently distracted though, both dogs went and did a protest roll on the sofa they are not allowed on thereby smothering it and  everything in its vicinity in molting, shedding, hair.

Enough to craft a hairpiece from should one wish to glue pug all over oneself. 

The new GCSE grading system is causing confusion

GCSE results are out and nearly all subjects, for the first time ever, are in nine-one format.

Core subjects, such as English, were in this format last year, and caused understandable confusion in a country where for decades we have been used to A,B, C.

Part of this confusion is that nine is the highest grade, which goes against many other grading techniques, with one being the lowest.

Either way, a nine will be hard to come by, being the equivalent of an A** which did not exist previously.

Even the concept of A* caused some consternation approximately a quarter of century ago when it was introduced. Will we eventually end up with a 9*? 

Are time-delay motorway matrix signs dangerous? 

Do the matrix signs on the motorway cause more accidents than they prevent? 

The signs post warnings, such as ’40 mph queue ahead’, only for there to be no queue ahead, but all cars brake swiftly to avoid the non-existent hazard and, inadvertently, causing a real hazard themselves.

I’m sure there is a technical reason why live updates can’t be posted and accidents have been cleared long before these signs can be updated, but it has always made me curious.

Similarly there is a free-standing speed camera warning on the A27 at present. All cars passing it slow immediately, causing a mass queue of braking vehicles. Possibly more ‘hazard’ than ‘help’. ​​​​​​​

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