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Updated: Nov 18, 2019

We know it’s been raining non-stop and the Estate grounds are flooded with water gushing down Winery Drive past the Vineyard entrance and down into the main Courtyard. But despite the incessant rain, I honestly can’t say we’ve really noticed.

We’ve all been somewhat distracted by the surprise and very sudden arrival, of little “Max” the latest member of The Motley Cru .... the most adorable black Labrador puppy.

Having met a friend at the Rugby Club on a Friday night who described the plight of little Max who needed to be re-homed urgently, it ignited an overwhelming desire to rescue him.

The whole family willingly agreed to adopt him over supper the next evening and Max arrived here two days later complete with all his belongings and everyone went “doo-lally”.

It was like adopting Paddington Bear. He’s such a soft, cuddly character with perhaps just a smidge of puppy fat.

WINE in the WILD!

So no point easing him in gently to life here at Kenton Park Estate, we threw him in at the deep end and took him on a major Walking Expedition the following day, one of our “WINE in the WILD” Adventures over Dartmoor to test his stamina alongside our other Vineyard Dogs, “Saffie” & “Indie” who are both very fit Gun Dogs (German Short Haired Pointers).

Conveniently with it being October Half Term, we were able to take Max out for extra long walks every day to test his endurance levels whilst battling the elements of the great British Weather and he’s loving it.

Ben now has his new Rugby Fitness Training Buddy and Max goes out running with Ben every morning around the Forest Trails up on the Ridge above the Estate (more fun than training in the Gym!).


Max also joins the “FIZZ on FOOT” Walking Tours with groups who come here to the Vineyard wanting to experience more than just a Tour of the Vines and Tasting of the Wines here in the Winery - he joins the Walking Tours that take place up to the Forest Ridges above the Estate and beyond - always ending with a Glass of Fizz or two!

He’s out in the Vineyard most days with Ben inspecting the Vines and is learning to navigate his way around the different Plantations. “Pinot Noir” is a firm favourite as it has the most Pheasants running in between the Vine Rows and it’s nearest the Winery Building where he enjoys all the fuss and attention from any Visitors.

He’s a little wary of the “Woolly Cru” our larger-than-life Swiss Valais Blacknose Sheep because of their amazing horns but also because they have such long curly wool fleeces covering their bodies, they look twice the size that they actually are.

Speaking of horns, our Pygmy Goats aren’t shy of head-butting him or any other intruders during their breakfast time using their incredibly strong horns. Having experienced being head butted in the ribs, it’s an injury that lasted for weeks.

Safe for another day

We do have to watch Max with the Chickens who truly are free range and wander all around the grounds at their own free will. They have proved irresistible on more than one occasion and drooling at the mouth is a big give-away of his intentions, but hopefully a few sharp reprimands have done the trick.

It must be hard to resist chasing them however, when all of them will suddenly hitch up their imaginary skirts and make a mad dash run for it round the corner of the Stable block to the Lake area in search of back up support from the gang of Indian Runner Ducks who will come running to their defence. The noise they create is something else! Max’s eyes expand to the size of saucers at the sight of them all. But they’re all safe for another day.

The Ducks have stopped laying their eggs

in protest of this boisterous new arrival!

However following some research it turns

out that it’s simply a matter of timing because they actually stop laying eggs in the Autumn/Winter.

You learn something new every day!

So to create a distraction from our feathered friends, Max did join us on a trip to meet some rare breed Pigs who will be arriving here any day within the next month. It’s an understatement to say that he was glued to the spot in awe of these funny looking creatures and couldn’t take his eyes off them. He kept looking up at us and then back to them totally in awe.


Having another Boy in the family has created quite a stir amongst the girls with both

“Saffie” and “Indie” being quite smitten with him and both competing to cuddle up next to him.

So a chance encounter with a friend at the Rugby Club turned into one of life’s unexpected outcomes and one which has added a whole new dimension to "Life here at Kenton Park Estate".


Watch this space as there may be the arrival of Kenton Park Puppies any day soon!

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