Monday, November 29, 2010

Truck Drivin' Dude

Hoke bleeds Ford Blue, believe me. Here he is at the wheel of Really Big Red, on a rainy day run to Coastal to once again try to do something about that damn horse. Notice the nice, shiny new FX4 F-350 parked next to us - truly a red Ford truck parking lot. Stupid horse ripped the top off the feedhouse, yanked a 75# bale off the stack, and ate most of a 50# bag of feed. And of course, since it rained not quite an inch, the rest of the bag, the new, unopened bag and most of the hay was thoroughly wet. Not to mention the damage to the sliding roof, which now sorta works, but mostly doesn't. We picked up a bow gate at Coastal, some T posts, and broke out the electric tape, two reels of electric wire and the heavy electric white rope and built him yet another containment area. Then we put not only his pal Pepperpot the goat in with him, but also Jubal, Tommy, Spot and Rufus, the four big wethers that will be sold next spring. Then, Ho and I moved Roar the bull and Ruffian, Pecan and Millie, the older cows, into that pasture, leaving just the youngsters in the big north pasture. It was a huge amount of work, and I truly wish Jim had taken that idiot horse back to Wisconsin with him. But maybe now we can all get thru the winter in relative peace.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Dogs Having Snow Fun

It was baby Sybil's first snow, and she enjoyed every moment of it. On the morning pack walk in the park, she plowed, she ate, she tried to catch snowflakes in the air, she picked up snow-covered fir twigs and shook the snow off them and chased the flying snow - in other words, she acted just like a young child experiencing her first snow and making the most of it.

Sybil, hangin' on to Gem the BC's tail with all her might, while Cricket and Hoke wrestle

Still got that tail. Ho Dog watches the kids play just like an old grandpa

STILL got the tail! Love Gem's ears here

Hoke and Cricket

Chasin' the tail this time

Gem, Cricket and baby Sybil pose

The ol' man, Ho Dog, enjoys a snow snack

Now, if this isn't a shot to make you go 'awwwww', then your heart must be as cold as it currently is outside

Friday, November 19, 2010

Puppies Everywhere

The Three Wise Pups, or maybe just Henry, Hank and Riley, Puppies of the Fall

Henry, with great-grandma Catera and the unidentified dog skeleton in the background (which I think is so very cool, BTW)

Henry, pix taken by his owner's pal Dixie. He is SO his momma's little boy!

Hankus on the run, as always, with the glowing eyes of Fussbudget in the background. She's probably thinking what an idiot child Hank is. Most girls have this opinion of boy puppies


Dignified Riley, taken by owner Leslie's daughter Anna H

And a wild shot of Riley, taken by one of Anna's pals

Four Paws

Cricket in her normal evening state of mind

Tonga, Quad Amputee

WARNING - Graphic pictures ahead. Some people may be sickened by the carnage in these shots of a young puppy amputating the limbs of a small giraffe.
Kris, Henry's owner, sent Sybil Tonga the Giraffe to play with a few weeks ago. Sybil showed her appreciation for her new toy by immediately, with the help of Gem the BC, removing all his limbs, ears, mane and most of his whiskers. Here, Gem has lost interest now that Tonga has lost limbs. But Sybil is determined to find that squeaker and do a squeakerectomy.

Gizmo fears he may be next in line, altho Sybil lives in dire fear of the 13.5 year old Papillon from Hell

One of Tonga's severed limbs, cast aside and forgotten for a while, anyway

Contemplating which body part to remove next. Not many left to choose from

Excellent use of the front paws as a vise to facilitate maximum chewing

Pack Walk Aftermath

After our twice daily 45+/- minute pack walk, this is the ugly aftermath. Sybil is so funny on the walks - she's mastered the 'flyby grab and go'. Sticks, twigs, pinecones, rocks, leaves, feathers - whatever is within reach of her mouth that she can grab on the fly. I'll look over at her and every time she's got something new in her mouth. Puppies - too funny.

Ho Dog, in front of the fire, Gem the BC on the couch, Cricket by the stairs. The limbless Tonga the Giraffe by the table doesn't go on the walks with us due to lack of limbs

Sybil and daddy Hoke in Dale's office in front of the wall heater

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

The Old Man and the Kitties

A few weeks ago, we met with Marty of KATS rescue to pick up our two new barn kitties. Some of you may know that we lost Mellow to a car a year ago, and it seems that Rollover decided that his days of hunting and eating vermin were over, and he went to live with a local girl, in the lap of luxury. So, Kitty Boy and, um, Kitty Boy came to live with us. They are safe, snug and smug as bugs in a rug out in the big silver barn, checkin' out the cows, the Gangsta Girls and the sheep and hopefully learning to hunt the myriad mice and bigger mice that call the barn home. Ho Dog kind of adopted them, sort of - he still gets 'that look' in his eyes now and then, but they don't seem to think much of that look, as they just purr and snuggle up against him in the warm sunlight.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Cody Update

Cody, aka The Blued Eyed Devil, sends his regards to his fans and family from the hinterlands of Wisconsin (no snow yet).

I do NOT even what to know what that black stuff on his muzzle is. It can't be good

With his personal chew toys Ozzie (black lab), Vonnie and Cholina

Personal chew toy Ozzie the black lab

Ho Cassidy and the Sybildance Kid

Nothing beats having an old, experienced dog around to teach the youngsters how it's done. I have found that pairing Ho Dog, the old man, my first WTCH and all around get'er done dog with the youngster is the perfect pairing. He's old, slow and steady, doesn't have the bad habits that daddy Hoke and momma Cricket have, and I can sort of call him off when I want Sybil to take over on her own. Sort of. Sometimes. Just depends on how tired he is as to whether or not he'll lay down and take a break and let the youngster go it alone for a bit.

Lot of pix here, and don't forget to click on 'em.

The Old Man gathers the flock for the morning festivities. Don't they look thrilled?
Sybil watches (and hopefully learns something) as Ho Dog brings 'em up
Okay, she's got 'em going in the right direction. I'm not saying anything yet, just letting her get her bearings, and I may go ahead and train her to the whistle like I did Ho

Picking up the stragglers on the turn up the fenceline northbound. The sheep are not fond of this direction for some reason, so this is pretty punk what she's doing with them

Ho Dog couldn't leave it alone, got up and turned them back, and poor Sybil is having to work to keep them grouped. She's taken especial fondness to taking on Rufus, the big, oldest wether there in the lead on the outside, black with the dirty looking wool and one white leg. He's got a ton of respect for her already

Ho drops back and lets Sybil take them thru the corner on her own

Okay, so I could blow everyone away and say that I asked for a shed right here from a 14 week old pup on her second outing on the sheep, but no, you and I both know that is NOT what happened. Not intentionally, anyway

She finally pretty much got that group back to the others before they hit the first gate

And, Ho turned them around and back down the fenceline they go. He's working the rear and she's got the lead - they actually made a great team using this formation

Sybil takes them back across the arena (Ho was pretty pooped out and lying down on the other side, zero influence from him)

Nicely done! She's got a ton of patience and is very instinctual as to which sheep she needs to eye up to keep control of the heads and keep them from bolting, especially with Ho back there pushing again. Darn his 10 1/2 year old hide - he still manages to get involved even when he's pooped out!

And, then Ho Dog got his second wind. She's still got control on the lead tho

Up to the other gate, the one they aren't crazy about going thru in this direction. Notice that she's NOT looking at the straggler but keeping Spot, the other oldest wether, from pulling off and going around the gate, his fave thing to do here

On the way to the second gate, showing a little of her dad's impatience
Yeah, she's got some of her daddy's speed in her. We'll be working on that, believe me

Ho Dog, once again, decides they need to turn and go the other way. If he could just NOT catch his second wind when I really don't want him to, it'd be much easier on Sybil

But, she helps him out by keeping the lead ram in his place - I missed the shot of her starting this move on our young ram, but this is the finish - challenge accepted and turned around by the 14 week old Sybil Pup

Keeping the flow going

She's a lot happier as things are flowing as they should, so she drops back with great uncle Ho for a bit

Flossie the oldest ewe (and the one with a pretty poor attitude towards the dogs) gets a lesson on tag team tactics from Ho Cassidy and the Sybildance Kid

Turn baby turn!

Alright Uncle Ho, I got it from here. You go take a breather, okay?

Hey, I said I got it - look, they all stop for me at the gate!

Nicely done!

About as pretty a picture as you can get - the old veteran and the young upstart teamed together to drive the flock towards home