Pets Page

May 18th 2016:       Skippy has had his stitches out this afternoon, after his postponed op which took place a fortnight ago! DEO GRATIAS that everything is ok and he only had a cyst!

———————————————————————————————————-April 24th 2016 – The news on Skippy is that he hasn’t had the operation as there is an infection, so there’s a course of antibiotics and anti-inflammatory tablets. He’s back in for a review on Fri then we’ll see what happens over a Op!


April 19th 2016 –  It’s been a while since I mentioned about pets, but today Skippy our 5 and half yr old poodle has been to the vets and will be going in for an operation on Friday. He has also developed a lump on his thigh, same side as he dislocated a few years ago! Please say a prayer to St. Francis !!! I think we need a little miracle, plus vet’s bills are so expensive aren’t they ???? But our pets are our ‘best friends’ and they are worth it! Don’t you think ?


June 30th 2014 — Took Coco today for a check up and all is ok, she’s healing well and next week the stitches will come out ! She and Skippy are missing their play times together!

Looks like something has happened to the old photos – I’ll have to see about that one, didn’t know they weren’t there………..


June 27th 2014: Just to update you, on Coco and her operation, she has got over it ok and all we need to do is to keep praying to St. Francis that she gets well quickly and nothing bad about the tumour. She’s on a lot of medication and is sleepy – but she wouldn’t mind and doesn’t mind about spending the day in BED !!


June 25th 2014:      It’s been some time I know since I put something on Pet’s Page, but just for all you Pet loving people out there just to let you know Coco is going in for an Op tomorrow, she has a tumour on her leg, please pray to St. Francis of Assisi, that is if you’d like to join me in saying a prayer to him! I will let you know in a day or two how she gets on!



Well there is a new addition to the family in the form of a Standard Poodle called Coco! It is soon after we lost Chelsea and she will never be forgotton as she had a very special place in everybody’s heart, but we needed another dog in our small family and after a bit of a stuggle in a search and thanks to Chelsea’s hairdresser we managed to track down one in rescue. I made phone calls to different people and places and they hadn’t one at the moment and others didn’t do rescue anymore etc…etc… Also there may soon be another ‘NEW ARRIVAL’ a little playmate for Coco??? So who is Coco? She is a black standard poodle (although she looks quite grey), who is nearly 7yrs old and very much full of life……..if you ask me she is Hyper-active! But she has fallen on her feet with us and absolutely loves it here. The space for her to run round in is fab. One fault of hers which we have discovered is that she loves sqeeky toys! It’ll drive us all barmy if we’re not careful. Some photo’s of Coco and Skippy!


Here is a minor thought of perhaps what goes through CHELSEA’S mind! Even in religious life it is quite common to have ‘pets’ amongst the queer two legged people who wear queer clothing of  long black dresses and white garments around their head with a black upper cloth, known as a veil. All we creatures do all day is sit around lazing about, giving a bark here and there when it is needed, answering a possible door bell with a single woof. It is a wonderful life here for us small creatures with a park all to myself – and yet , i’m not completly alone…. There are other animals lurking in my grand little island squirrels which i can chase, but they get away up the tree. June 18th:  Today, there was a group of  ‘first holy communion candidates’  here and chelsea went in to see them, two people were afraid of dogs but they got on ok with her. July 9th: Just recently one of our gardeners spotted in the orchard the hen phesant and her chicks, unfortunately we did not see them as babies but suddenly one day the two youngsters were spotted in the greenhouse around the tomatoe plants. Now they are seen on a regular basis, i have seen them around the strawberry plants this afternoon. Chelsea obviously smelt them out and as usual chased them off, they might not be ‘Pets’ as such but they are a part of our wildlife and are doing pretty well in the orchard – that is until we are able to go in there and pick the apples!!!! Its great to have these birds here and for us to encourage them as much as possible, one day they will disappear from here and maybe never return but in the mean time it is their home. AUG 2nd:  Today is Chelsea’s birthday! She is 11 (or rather 77 in doggie years ). She got lots of fuss and not to mention lots of treats!! Occassionally she acts like a puppy but she is feeling her age now. She has slowed down quite alot since we first got her 8 years ago. Still, plenty of walkies (of course when willing to go that is because there is a stubborn streak in her), plenty of treats like markies, choccie drops, rawhide chews and anything else she can persude people to give her always comes in handy and gives a little pleasure. Especially a good old rub on the tummy, or a little back scratching takes those tiresome little itches away. Still in 1 weeks time chelsea will be having a good old bubbles and hair cut ready for the people ‘coming for the come and see weekend!’ Mon Aug 3rd:  CHELSEA WRITES:  Today,we had a Recreation Day and had a picnic although it wasn’t too good weather (It should have been outside) so we had an informal gathering in the refectory, lots of sandwiches and i (chelsea) had my biccies and they put me outside, but i didn’t finish them i wanted one of those sandwiches and in the end i got one full of cheese – it was delicious! I missed out on the ice – cream though, my friends were too quick at having it themselves and my mum (that Sr. D) put the rest back quickly. Still i did get my fair share of the fun and i had some extra biccies at tea time too while they were eating cake. One thing i tried to do while they wasn’t looking was to bury my bone in the prioress’ garden – but i got caught out so i had to abandon it! MAYBE NEXT TIME…… Aug8th:  Chelsea is causing a bit of a stir at the moment. Let me tell you of her lastest antics!!! Last night she did something rather disturbing in more ways than one. You know what it is like to be afraid of something??? Well Chelsea is afraid of 2 things only flies and hot air balloons! At 10.30pm when everyone was asleep (yours truly hits the sack straight away and knows nothing till next morning – that is usually), Chelsea decided to do a runner from her bed because of a single, solitary FLY. It meant that mother prioress who looks after her along with me went all round the house looking for her and in the mean time whilst Sr. Anne was looking chelsea was knocking at my cell door – so to speak – i take ages to wake up and heard noises outside my door. When i got my wits about me, i realised it was chelsea dog and thought what was she doing not in bed…… so i opened the door and in she came straight to her mat that she occassionally goes on when with me during the day. This is situated by the window and radiator. I thought she was hot so gave her a drink of water but no she didn’t want it so it happened that all night long she was panting, and that meant neither of us got any sleep. Chelsea doesn’t usually come to me at night, she always goes off to her own place. But all this just because of a fly…still these are little trials and penances to put up with, and are expected occassionally………..also another little episode has just taken place and that is with the other dreaded thing that we call (public enemy number 1 – HOT AIR BALLOONS) one has just skimmed the top of the trees and the nearby housing estate and chelsea just will not go out she shakes if she does and it is so pitiful to see but you just can’t do anything. They have regular events at Shugborough Hall just opposite us and quite a few come over and all the animals in the village hate that – but we all have our own individual fears and hates even the animals get to share in things like us and all we can do is togive them extra T.L.C and of course a treat! Hope you enjoy chelseas antics please let me know – and she will be having a bubbles on monday with a hair cut on tuesday ready for the weekend. Here’s a photo of when i do her… from sr. d   xSr Davina 'N' Chelsea (HOPE THAT THIS WILL PROVODE A LINK TO PHOTOS OF CHELSEA AT VARIOUS TIMES!) COMPETITION TIME FOR CHELSEA CHELSEA now has a little competition and that is with a KITTEN! Yes, there is now a cat amongst our family, but it is indirectly as she belongs to our chaplain. The cat’s name is ..wait for it……DIANA 3rd.DIANA This isn’t a good photo and she was 2 months old here, but she has now grown and is very playful. She is a tortoise shell and very friendly, loves company, tries extremely hard to get into the enclosure but is very quickly escorted back out. On occassions i have been asked to go over and look after her and after the meal Diana my come and spend a few minutes on your knee (If you’re lucky!) She really is a sweetie……. and a pleasant addition to our life here. Tuesday 18th May: I know i’m busy preparing for the Blessing Day, but i just had to let you know that Fr. Luke’s pussy -‘DIANA’ has had her 1st litter last Saturday and got 4 adorable babies! 1 black, 1 ginger, and 2 tortoiseshell. Hopefully sometime soon after the weekend when she’s not ‘too protective’ we shall get a glimpse of them and take a pic or two….   TUES 27TH JULY 2010 I’m afraid I have some bad news for all you pet lovers ………… over the last month Chelsea has been very poorly and had lost alot of weight quite quickly even though there was nothing wrong with her appetite! The last week she deteriated very fast and this morning every time she tried to walk she lost balance and fell over and found it hard to get up again so we had to make that hard desision and call the vet. So she went peacefully to sleep to ‘doggies heaven’. As you can imagine she will be very missed by all as she had a great fan club and was very much loved by the community! This is all for now…………

Happy times!

Here are a few memoirs of my ‘best friend’ and a friend of many, many others………. Chelsea dog was unusual in many ways, she was extremely gentle and loved to see children and was easy with old people. She was if you like a Benedictine in spirit as she was always around for mass and office lying quietly in the chapter room in ‘her’ area, in which everyone was in full view. Each morning she would look in to see where I was, and if not there she would go all over the house until she found me. If I wasn’t there then everyone knew about it – she’d mope! Head in her paws, sorrowful look etc… was happy enough though to get her food and anything else that was going! Ever since day one of being here I was hers – she’d never let me out of her sight and I couldn’t even go to the little girls room without her waiting outside so everyone knew where to find me………..How embarassing! All you had to do with her was say: walkies, bed, sausages and she’d know even licking her lips. She was a true friend of all and knew what she wanted…. if she didn’t want to go for a walk she would literally dig her heels in and say  ‘no i’m not budging’, and you just had to let her off the lead and back she went to where-ever she found safe especially when a hot-air balloon was around, they were public enemy number one! She had many favourite poses and some most unlady like for a dog, but then she never acted like a lady it was always tom-dog I think! She loved looking to see where the foxes had been, chasing all those pussy cats and squirrels and anything else that came into view, not to mention those ducks that suddenly appeared over the last few years.  Her favourit toys were tug-of-war and sqeaky (the only one that survived being pulled to peices in 2 seconds flat!).  I know I’m being sentimental I guess, but she was a big part of me and dogs are generally known to be ‘Man’s best friend’ aren’t they?  I always seemed to have had a good bond with all cats and dogs anyhow…many people have already asked if we are going to have another dog? It is obviously too soon but maybe by the end of the year we may have – who knows what will happen in the mean time …. Chelsea was given to us by one of our Oblates, and she saw Chelsea quite often too!  God bless.    

15 thoughts on “Pets Page

  1. I love the articles on Chelsea. I just finished
    a discerning week with a monastery and they
    have several cats. Sr. Sugar(she is all white)
    likes to sit in the window during the Divine Office.
    The three cats stay in the cloister garden and
    play with the turtles that live there also. Everyday
    I would go into the garden and pet them.
    I work at a Catholic Church and our pastor has
    a bassett hound named Wilbur Francis, Wilber
    has a bed in my office and stays with me most
    of the day. He has a basket of toys in our hallway
    but he is very lazy and really has no interest in
    playing with them he just wants them out of the
    basket. My pastor said to me,”can you train him
    to put the toys back in the basket?” So now I am
    on a mission to teach him to pick up after himself.
    Animals have a way of helping us not to take life
    so seriously.

    1. Thanks for the comment, yes it livens up the place and adds a family atmosphere. There is a kitten around now and i will sometime soon (I hope) write a bit about her, she belongs to our chaplain….some competition here now i think but who will win -chelsea or diana – i don’t know????

      god bless
      sr. davina

      1. Hello Sr. D. We share your love of Poodles! The Vet told me years ago, my 9 week old apricot puppy, “he is not a dog, madam, he is a POODLE” How do you like that! Now we have a mini-black Emily, 12 years of energy and mostly tender love for all of us, especially me Gram. I probably would have persevered with the Poor Clares if we had a poodle! God bless you all and send you many vocations.

  2. How wonderful and how blessed to let animals into your lives. Reading about your four legged friends has lifted my heart. Although I am not a Catholic, I will be saying prayers for your community and thanking God that you are giving his creatures a beautiful home. Animals certainly provide you with a different outlook on life. I have learned so much about unconditional love from a wonderful Irish Wolfhound and a very cold wet nose. I hope that your pets continue to bring you joy and laughter. God bless you all.

    1. Hello Angela,
      Yes, they are a great blessing to all of us. Now we are almost starting the blessed season of Advent in preparation for christmas, Chelsea dog (at any rate) is already getting a build up of excitement for pressies and food – well i guess she can’t help it with smells drifting all over the house of one kind or another. Chelsea’s presents have already started to arrive and i think she knows it!!!!
      Diana the kitten on the other hand – well its her 1st christmas with fr. luke and i think she’ll get as spoilt as chelsea as she too has got presents coming in …….

      god bless
      sr. d

  3. Well Sr. Davina, Our Vet has told us that Poodles are NOT DOGS….so there, an explanation why Chelsea is so wonderful! I am from Chelsea, Massachusetts! But you are so blessed to have her. I am a former Poor Clare, now widowed, and so wish I could I could re-enter somehow. But too old, I guess.So happy to have found your Blog today! God bless look like such a happy bunch!

  4. sorry to hear about the loss of poor chelsea what a wonderful friendly dog so peaseful and easy going . i loved how she just strolled into choir and around the cloister
    thinking of you all at this time

  5. Sr. Davina, I am so sorry about your loss of Chelsea..such a beautiful and gentle gift of God to your Community. You will see her again..nothing that loves can die, and I know she loved you.
    Our mini apricot Rusty is also in Heaven, so I really understand. Perhaps God will send another good poodle to love you all. ML

  6. Mother Davina,

    I have just discovered your website and blogs and would like to say how sorry I am that you have lost your devoted friend and companion, Chelsea. I agree with one of your respondents that dogs provide a shining example of unconditional love which is, of course, what God blesses us with. I am overjoyed that he has sent you a fitting replacement for Chelsea in CoCo and I’m sure you will find equal joy in her friendship and love.

    In closing, may I congratulate you on your appointment as Mother Abbess and wish all God’s blessings on you and your community.

    Lawrence Kilkenny (St John’s parish)

  7. How strange. In France, very few convents have pets. Probably because they aren’t seen in the same way as in England. But I am always surprised to see pets in religious houses in this country. I don’t see how they can help focus on God, help pray, etc. They rather distract you, don’t they? It’s so much work feeding them and taking care of them. and in the religious life, you always need time so that everything be done in time.

  8. It is wonderful that you have animals. I have a vocation and need a monastery that will let me bring my dog and cat. There are also many other single women like myself with vocations who are in need of a cloistered house that will accept pets. I think there is a real need for this. God bless you sisters.

  9. Please, can you all keep me in your prayers? You won’t remember me but I’ve never forgotten you.

    God bless xxx

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