An Open Letter to the Rabbits in My Neighborhood

Dear Rabbits,

I know the indoor/outdoor cats in the neighborhood have gotten old and have allowed you to proliferate in larger than normal numbers this year, so let me give you a few survival tips.

  1. If you squeeze past a barrier and find yourself in an enclosed space, turn around.
  2. If that enclosed space has a whiff of dog pee, turn around faster.
  3. If you see an actual dog on a leash in that area, and you don’t die right then, consider yourself lucky and leave.
  4. If you see the dog again on a leash, please understand, he will not always be on a leash in the enclosed area. Leave immediately.
  5. If you see the dog a third time on a leash, remember, this is not a permanent state. YOU ARE GOING TO DIE. LEAVE THE AREA IMMEDIATELY.
  6. If you’re still in the enclosed space after dinner. YOU ARE DEAD.
  7. Pro-tip: When the dogs come to kill you, try and angle your head toward the basenji and not the miniature pincher. You’ll have a much quicker, much less painful death. The mini-pin’s mouth just isn’t big enough to kill you in one quick blow.

No love,

Me

Morning walkies

Notice the leashes. This is not a permanent state.

When Competition Can Get You Killed

This morning while I was walking Storm, we came across a sparrow and a cardinal fighting over a moth that they’d already ripped the wings off. The moth was still alive and making a kind of desperate clicking noise with it’s legs. The birds were so focused on trying to get the moth from each other that the sparrow almost ran into Storm’s mouth. Were Storm a slightly bigger dog he would have been able to pull me harder and get that sparrow. Alas, he’s under thirty pounds and couldn’t move me. The birds came to their senses at the last moment and flew away abandoning the moth. I thought the following things about the whole scenario:

  1. What kind of nightmare hell was happening for that poor moth?
  2. Are moths so tasty that they’re worth that kind of dangerous competition?
  3. Who had the moth first?
  4. Why couldn’t that cardinal easily take the sparrow? He was the bigger bird.

Nature is mysterious.

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This is his sad face because he didn’t get to kill a bird.

Creatures of Habit

Morning walkies

Morning walkies

My youngest dog is a four-year-old, male basenji, Storm. We have two other dogs, females, a miniature pinscher, Hetty, seven, and a border terrier, Cory, thirteen. They all take a mile long walk in the morning. Then we come back to the house and they have their breakfast and then we take Storm for a two and a half mile walk on his own because he needs more exercise than the girls do. He particularly likes this walk because he seems to prefer the idea of being an only dog, even though he’s never been one.

Last Sunday, my husband and I had three of our friends over for brunch. After we ate, we sat around the table for a long time talking, which is a sign of both a successful brunch and interesting friends. Storm, however, felt like our friends overstayed their welcome. Half way through the meal he began to yawn and sigh in the kitchen. Then he started throwing himself against the back door and letting out soft moans of despair as he collapsed in a heap. Apparently, if you don’t have your second walk before noon, your legs are in danger of atrophying and falling off. You didn’t know that? Neither did I. Storm knew. This is apparently the sort of thing that keeps him awake at night. All along I thought that what kept him awake at night was the bunnies frolicking in the yard which he can see from the window behind our bed due to the streetlight on the other side of the road. Bunnies. Who knows what they’re up to? Suspicious.

Can you feel the ennui?

Can you feel the ennui?

 

The Kill Switch

The Kill Switch (Tucker Wayne, #1)The Kill Switch by James Rollins

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I really enjoy reading James Rollins’ Sigma series, so I thought I’d give this a try. It’s tangential to Sigma, but Wayne is an independent contractor rather than a team member. I liked this book for many of the same reasons I like the Sigma series. Rollins likes to tie his books to actual historical places and events and real science and then he spins a fantastic, action-filled yarn around them. He does that here, but since there isn’t a team involved, I found Wayne getting too battered around for just one guy to reasonably deal with, also I really worried about the dog. I know that’s dumb, since the whole point of the series is Wayne and his dog, but still, I worried. Other than those issues, I enjoyed this book. Scott Aiello did a great job with his performance and it was easy to listen to him for long stretches in the car or just walking around the house doing chores. It’s fast-paced, the locales are great, and because I had just read Churchill’s book on his early life, the references to the Boer War were really interesting. Action fans should check it out.

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Dog Park (Prison) Update

The great dog park experiment continues. Storm goes every day, Monday through Friday, and then gets a weekend pass. He knows he has to stay an hour, so about fifty minutes in, he starts to cry and walk around near the gate, but there have been several incidents lately when he forgets to cry and drool while standing on the picnic table and actually joins in the fun.

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This is one of his little friends. He’s actually gone so far as to run around the enclosure with her several times. Here is proof that he sometimes enjoys himself.

There are other dogs he likes too, although he would never admit it. For the most part, he’s stopped drooling. The crying is much less frequent, but often in the middle of running around, he will remember he’s supposed to be miserable and throws himself on the ground.

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Yeah, just like that. Histrionics abound at the dog park, or at least they do for Storm.

Dog Park or Prison Yard?

Storm is definitely in the “prison yard” camp. He hates the dog park. This is how he spends ninety percent of his time when he’s there. Yes, he’s standing on top of a picnic table.

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He doesn’t like that the dog park is dirty. He doesn’t particularly like the other dogs. He doesn’t like that there is a water hose that some people spray their dogs with, which seems like water torture to him. In short, the dog park is a terrible, awful place that he is forced to go to for an hour every day.

Why am I so mean to him? Why does he have to endure such injustice? Because he’s a jerk to the other dogs if he gets bored at home, and the best way to keep him from being bored is to wear his little butt out. Thus two walks a day and the dog park for an hour. It’s hard for me to feel bad for him when lots of dogs don’t get nearly that much exercise. He feels like I’m a heartless monster. Even his beloved Colin won’t save him. He has to go every day to the prison yard.

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Above is his open plea for compassion, but I’m not buying what he’s selling.