Unusual Visitors

One of my neighbor’s has taken to feeding the stray cats in the area.  At first he put out a few dishes of food out near the trees where the cats can sometimes been see.  He’d collect the empty dishes and set out new dishes full of food on a daily basis.  This went on for a few months before he decided to do something different.

He moved the food dishes to his back door to make it easier for him to ensure there was always food and water available for the stray cats.  He also started setting out little catnip toys for them to enjoy.

And naturally we started noticing more cats in the area.  We also started noticing that some of the birds were disappearing as well as the squirrels.  Logically it made sense, increase in cats means a decrease of small animals.  It was a tough choice, let the cats starve or realize we might have fewer birds and such.  I couldn’t say the cats were eating the birds, which another neighbor suggested, but naturally birds and cats will keep their distance.

The four-footed one didn’t attempt to make friends with the cats.  Instead she kept her distance.  But when the skunks and foxes started coming into the neighbourhood, well she couldn’t resist these new beings.  Thankfully the foxes were too shy to play.  As for the skunks, they clearly are used to dogs as they let the four-footed one come up and sniff them.  She also tried to play with them.  They weren’t interested in play, but thankfully they also didn’t spray.

The neighbor who thought he was helping the cats didn’t believe us about the foxes and skunks.  That is until one say when he was setting out the food and a skunk walked right into his house.  Of course the skunk didn’t stay, it walked back out of the door which wa still being held open due to shock.

We now have more birds and squirrels on the neighbourhood.  And the skunks still visit now and then.  As they as passing by.


Working With Slow Progress or Manners, Dogs And Oh My

Someone in this household needs to work on her manners.  Wait.  What?  You thought we were going to talk about me?  Okay, sure my manners could be brushed up on.  Let’s face it, the majority of us can brush up on our manners.

But enough of that, we are talking about th four-footed one.  She really needs to work on her manners.  She chews with her mouth open, interrupts when someone else is talking with whining.  Oh…no I mean yes she does those things, but that’s not what I’m complaining about.

She currently is running under the assumption that she owns the entire sidewalk and woe to anyone else who happens to be on what she considers to be hers.  She will bark at you.  If she is on a leash when Beloved is walking her she will try and lunge at the other  person.  (She tried that with me twice and that was it.) Beloved can’t understand why she doesn’t behave he same way with him as she does when she is with me.

She does need to work on her listening skills in general as she’s as apt to ignore a sit command as she is to follow it.  I’d like to think it’s a manners thing rather than an owner thing, but of course it will be an owner thing.  It always is.

And then there is this need to spray people with water right after she has had a drink.  This is new by the way.  We never used to spray people with.  We used to drink and politely let the water dribble off our chin/beard.  But now we spray people.  Liberally.  With water from our water dish.

You see  manners are lacking.  If we want to take her out in public we must work on manners.  Otherwise she will never get out with us.  On the other hand, Beloved seems to enjoy whole sidewalks to himself as well as patios at th coffee shops.

Of Sharks, Dinosaurs And ?

There dinosaurs on the television earlier.  I’m m not sure what exactly Beloved was watching, I just noticed dinosaurs with tiny little arms and apparently several bony protrusions in its is dinosaur was colored yellow and purple and had what appeared to be feathers on its back legs.  Granted this was an artist’s interpretation of a dinosaur, but why it was on my television was a bit of a mystery.  Just not one I needed to actually solve.

However the little bit I saw made me rethink the four-footed one.  Not rethinking keeping her, oh heavens no not that!  But the past little bit we’ve been referring to her as a shark.  Basically since the week of non-stop shark shows, we’ve come to notice that our sweet little companion resembles an ambush attacking style of large, toothy sharks.

Now I’m thinking perhaps we were a bit quick on calling her a shark.  There appears to be a fair amount of an artist’s idea of a dinosaur in our four-footed companion.  There are days I wish she’d just get a little more in touch with her inner-sloth.  Not completely, but a bit.  Just enough that she’d settle down here and there.  But of course if she were to get in touch with her inner sloth I’m pretty sure it wouldn’t be the slow part as much as the tree climbing part.  Maybe it’s better that she just stays as she is and we stop trying to compare her to other animals!

Airplane Watch

Beloved is a few thousand miles away now.  He may even be a few thousand miles in the air judging by a quick glance at the clock.  And now that he’s gone I will find myself watching airplanes.  I ways do when he’s gone one a long trip all the way across the world.  I have no clue why, logically I know he isn’t on any of the planes flying over my head…but still I do it.

So for a change of plans, the four-footed one and I took a drive out into the country.  We had already gone for a few walks around the house and watched the airplanes fly past the house.  Out in the country we didn’t notice as many airplanes.  Just horses and cows with a small handful of goats.  I think the four-footed got worn ht watching horses run and goats eat.  The cows seemed to want to rest on the ground.

When we getting wiped off (well she was getting wiped off to go in the car and I was the one doing th wiping) a flock of birds went over head.  The country-footed one watched them until they went out of sight.  For the rest of the ride home ever time she saw a bird she would watch it until it was out of her sight.  I guess it’s not much different from watching airplanes and probably is a great deal more entertaining.


I had heard, from a friend, that another friend of mine had taken the idea of being an advocate for her child a bit too far.  Apparently this mother has become a helicopter parent that’s hovering a little too close for people to notice the separation between mother and child.

It’s hard to say much about this when I’m not a parent so I just made a few noncommittal noises and was ready to leave things be.  But of course in life there is always something, typically something small, that makes things change.  In this case it was a little something that moved the moment from noncommittal to until.  I was fine with things until I heard that the mother did not feel that I “honored” her child’s “personal need to express emotions” through “verbal dialogue”.

In case you are wondering when mom and child were last visiting me said child felt it was acceptable to tease the four-footed one because “it’s fun” and “I really wanna”.  I do not tolerate teasing or other forms of abuse towards innocent animals.  (Of course I’m also never sure what the four-footed one will do in response so I really do not accept any level of this.)  The child’s response was to immediately try to kick the four-footed one (he missed) and proceed to hit my walls.  Needless to say I was not impressed and told him as much.

I had assumed things were fine after this altercation, but mother decided that her son should be allowed to express his desires and responses in any he saw fit and I was selfish to not allow him this chance.  I should point out the child is ten years old and I know for a fact he knows how to behave.    Mom, without telling me how she felt, decided that I was being neglectful towards her offspring.  I worry for this child’s future because not everything is going to go his way and his mother won’t always be there for him.

For the record, I have never raised my voice or touched this child.  I have never called him names nor made disparaging comments towards him or about him.  Evidently my lack of fully supporting her child is not only disrespectful but dishonourable.  His behavior to my four-footed one is acceptable, which makes me wonder what else will be acceptable in his future.

Your Dream, My Nightmare

A friend of Beloved’s recently announced he had been chosen to be part of a research team going to study a specific species of spider in Peru.  Up until this announcement I didn’t really know what this man did for a living.  After all he simply said he was a “biologist” when he was introduced to me years earlier.  He certainly never talked about his work, saying most people found it “unsettling”.

And now I heard he was going to Peru to study a spider those of a dinner plate.  A spider affectionately known as a bird-eating spider.  A huge tarantula of sorts.  With great big fangs.  That feasted on birds.  He was correct, his line of work was unsettling and to be honest a bit disturbing.  Simply because spiders that size?  Yikes!

Apparently there search station has the kind of WIFI signal that says “ha ha, fooled you” as just when you think you have connectivity, you lose it.  But he promised to send interesting emails when he could as well as pictures.  To show us the spiders are beautiful creatures.  Amazing animals even.  I will be happy as long as he comes back safe and sound with no spider bites or hugs from an anaconda.

To me, this isn’t really a dream, more like a nightmare, but he is so enthusiastic about it that it’s hard to not get cut up with his joy.  And I am truly excited for him.  I’m thrilled he has this opportunity.  It’s just not for me. But that’s what makes life interesting.  We can interact with people of al different interests and learn from them in a way that is comfortable for us.  And who knows, I may come to appreciate the spider that eats birds.  But I doubt I will ever call it cute.  Shame he isn’t off to study sloths!

Who Says What or Learning With The Dog 

The cow says “moo!”, or something similar to that.  The pig says something close to “oink!” and the cat says something like “meow!”.  The frog says “ribbit!” and this human says “enough please.  My poor ears!”  For the cow, pig, cat and frog you have to press them, or bite em, in order for them to make noise.  For this human, well you just have to lay with your dog toys for me to be asking for silence.

Of course the dog, this wonderful four-footed companion of mine, doesn’t care what the human says.  The human is always saying something so really asking for silence is no different than asking if you want to go outside.  Or so the dog is able to pretend.  And yes I do realize that the dog didn’t purchase these toys, but for the record I didn’t purchase them either.  They were gifts from my friends.  Who thought the dog would like them.  Or maybe my friends wanted me to go crazy.  Perhaps a combination of both!

To be honest prior to her getting these toys I didn’t think these things existed for pets.  Children yes.  As a matter of fact I may have had toys that made those noises so I’d know who said what at the farm.  If I went to the farm.  But pets?  I didn’t think a pet would need to know who says what.  But then again why not?  I mean a lot of us treat our pets like family members or children.  Granted my four-footed wonder won’t be needing to know what is being said at the farm.  Because her human isn’t really able to enjoy the farm. 

Oh I love animals.  I’m just not a farm person.  I’d want to take the animals home with me and I’m pretty sure the farmers would frown on that.  But at least the dog knows who says what.  Now if only I could teach her to take out the garbage!