My dogs bark, and I let them.
They are here for such a short while, and have something to say.
I decipher their inflections to say: It's a bear, moose, porcupine, squirrel, deer, fox, stranger, wind in the trees, the sent of a predictor is near, danger, danger. Perhaps they say I am here, this is my home, I hear you. Quit often, I believe, they simply enjoy to commune with nature.
The girls, Grace and Halo, have found their voice. Both are deep and robust like ther mother, grandfather, and great grand mother. There is a cadence, a sense of community when all four girls bark at once. I listen, and they know. We are connected. Connected to a world beyond porch screens. Connect to ancestors 's spirits carried in the wind. We all have something to share. Listen.
Friday, June 10, 2016
Grace and Halo were weighed today.
6 1/2 months old
Grace: 49.5 pounds
Halo 48.5 pounds
I took these photos of the two in a field of daisies (daisies remind me of Willow, they always bloom around her birthday on May 30th. I like that my yard is covered with them). Grace was a little distracted by the daisies, she kept eating them.
Halo (left - Grace (right)
There is nothing like a little added excitement to a morning walk. The four girls (Pearl, Willow Sunshine, Grace and Halo) were huddled around a tiny stump. Their body language indicated curiosity. As I approached I saw a fluffed up baby porcupine. It was the cutest little thing, but certainly terrified surrounded by beasts and human. Pack behavior was controlled with a harsh voice and stern words of "bad, bad, bad, and no.” I couldn’t think of anything else say, my brain reverted to primal thoughts, and unable to function rationally. It worked. An all-out quill mess prevented, and the life of a porcupine saved. Imagine the mess if four dogs went into pack mode, and I had no control. I am forever grateful for dogs that lean toward curiosity instead of defense. Pearl and Halo exhibited the most prey drive.
I broke off a sapping to use as a switch, got behind the baby and shuffled it into the woods. The sapling kept dogs at bay, as I guided he porcupine into the wood and up a tree. Except the porcupine, being young and small chose a dead stump six inches in diameter, and broken five feet off the ground. Once there was nowhere else to go it tried to climb a sapling, which began to bend and sway back toward earth. Eventually baby porcupine managed equilibrium, and carefully teetered on stump and sapling.
We continued on our way. Dogs were praised and lots of treats awarded. This was a good learning experience. Dogs listened, and did not rush into the unknown. I thank the universe for a baby porcupine who hunkered down, and not an adult. If it doesn't run, dogs won't chase.
Friday, May 27, 2016
A few mile stones to mention, and swim season has begun.
Darn, water in the ears!
Grace and Halo, Nash and Pearl's Granddaughters, and Willow Sunshine's daughters, take the plunge. I have tried a different approach to teaching these pups how to swim. Hands off. As soon as the snow began to melt, I took the girls to places with shallow water, streams, puddles, shallow pools, and I made sure to have an adult swimmer with me - Willow Sunshine, Pearl, other friends. When the lakes and ponds opened up, we went to places with gradual entries, again the adult swimmers came along. It's been a joy to watch the girls gain their confidence in the water, Grace was the first to "accidentally" swim, then Halo followed. the two learn quickly together. When I felt they were ready we went to the lake. I took Willow Sunshine who swims like a fish, and fearless in water. One pup at a time, and in they go with out hesitation. Halo enjoys snorkeling, dipping her head in the water, pawing it, chasing waves, while Grace prefers to gulp it, and swim with her mouth open at times.
Willow Sunshine takes off. Some how I managed to take a photo of both dog and bumper splashing at once.
Setting sun, dogs swim. Willow Sunshine and Halo swim off into the sunset.
Halo likes to paw at things under water.
How wonderful it is to have Nash back in the water. He rides a little lower, but still the thrill for him is there. A joyous gift.
Heart, Bell, Light, Collar - These things will remain, and I will remember.
AHh, this water is good.
Pearl, my party girl, spent most her time socializing with other swimmers. She required a shove to get wet, once in its electric. Wild eye and lots of running in circles when she gets out. Her enthusiasm contagious. Love this girl.
Pearl swimming with Grace, twilight made focusing difficult.
Too much to have all five at once, so I took three and two. The sun set on Pearl and Grace, so not as many photos there.
Grace - bumper release
Halo, taking off, love Nash in the background.
Halo simply sat in the water.
Grace takes her first dive off the rock! Love this blurry photos.
Pearl, at home, ready for bed.
Halo didn't want to get out of the car.
Halo, didn't want to give up the bumper.
Hmmmmm, Willow Sunshine, and Nash
Tired Halo, resting on Nash's collar.
Saturday, May 21, 2016
Grace, Luna, Willow Sunshine, Nash, Pearl, Halo
Gabriel and Halo 5 1/2 months old
Gabriel and Pearl 7 years old
Luna 3 years old
Gabriel and Nash 15 1/2 years old
Luna and Grace 5 1/2 years old
Gabriel and Hal
Grace and Halo
Grace and Halo
Luna and Willow Sunshine (sisters)