Clare’s perfect pet quinella
Mercury horse- racing tipster Clare Petit’s love of four- legged animals extends well beyond the track, as Luke Bowden discovered when he visited Clare and her dogs, eight- year- old staffy cross Bella and three- year- old German shepherd Rani.
Where did you get Bella and Rani? If I visit the pound, I always seem to bring a dog back with me.
I got Bella from the pound when we already had another female German shepherd called Brew [ unfortunately not named after 2000 Melbourne Cup winner].
When Brew passed on, I weighed up getting another dog to keep Bella company and a friend had a litter of German shepherd puppies so we took the plunge and got Rani three years ago. How do they get along together and what traits set them apart? Really well, Bella mothered Rani and, even though she’s a lot smaller, Bella is defi nitely the boss.
Rani has a big bed in the lounge room but if Bella gets on it, Rani has no hope of claiming it back.
In terms of personality, Rani just loves other dogs and people and she’s very chilled. She loves swimming and running along Howrah Beach but a lot of other dog owners will pick up their smaller dogs if they see Rani bounding towards them because of the stigma attached to German shepherds, which is a shame.
Bella ... well Bella is bi- polar. If it’s just us at home and we walk into a room, she’ll get up and walk into the other but if we have guests around, like right now, she’s all over them wanting attention.
She’s extremely scared of loud noises as well, especially thunder. One time she went missing for six- days when there was a thunderstorm. Mum, dad and I put posters up everywhere and canvassed the neighbourhood looking for her.
On the sixth day, she just rocked up at the front door at 5am like nothing had happened. And Rani’s been in the wars recently as well? Yeah, Rani is recovering from a knee reconstruction.
It was fortunate Ollie’s Gold [ the 2013 Tasmanian Derby winner Clare owns a share in] got up in the Derby because it wasn’t a cheap operation, but she’s worth every cent. What do you love about having Bella and Rani? We’ve always had a dog in the family, I couldn’t think of not having one around home.
Truth be told, I like the company of animals more than people. They’re always pleased to see me when I come home from a hard day’s work and they share very similar interests to me – sleeping and eating.