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Thursday, December 1, 2016

November 2016

I took Isabel her first agility trial.  We had been training for over a year, so it was time.  She really did well in Jumpers With Weaves, making first place both times, and a perfect 100 on the second run.  On the standard course, however, she refused to go on the contact obstacles, and we did not qualify. It was fun to compete and I look forward to our next trial.

Kitty had surgery on a mammary cyst that she's had for some time.  It was quite a time getting her over it, with three return trips to the vet, and wearing a cone for 3 weeks.  She beat the heck out of the cone, as it grew to be her personal weapon.  On the day we were planning to take it off, she went outside and rubbed it in dog poo, which precipitated an early removal.

My dog class has gone really well, as I've had lots of dogs visiting and culminated in a trip to the kennel club to see dogs run the agility course.  We got some good PR out of it when QU did this little story.

About 11 years ago, Lowell dug up some snake eggs while getting some soil with his tractor.  He gave the eggs to me and I hatched out three of them: Little Ron, Little Joe and Little Lowell.  I eventually released the first two, but have kept the third happy and healthy for years, often using it for demonstrations in my class.  I was completely surprised to find 4 eggs in her cage last week.  I think because I overfed her last spring, she had nothing better to do with the nutrients than make eggs.  I have rechristened her "Lolita".  For those keeping track, I'm 0 for 2 on guessing the gender of my pet snakes, as I thought my Burmese Python a female for years, but it turned out to be a male.

We took the sisters and Gretchen to a barn hunt practice.  They all shoed a little interest, but were not exceptional at all.  I was surprised, given how they like to chase squirrels at home.  I certainly thought Gretchen, who has killed mice, would attack the rat.  We consoled them with a trip to Pet Supplies Plus, where they got many treats and toys.

The next day I took Indigo to the Therapy Dogs International (TDI) test.  I knew the test was coming and she needed to work on some skills, but I just didn't have enough time with all the late nights and special events.  Miraculously, she passed.  Now she's a certified therapy dog.

Because we are insane we took on another foster.  Lilith is a pepper and salt mini.  She has lots of energy and attitude.  She is learning to socialize with the other dogs, and playing with one of the sisters at a time seems to work best.  We only had her a week before handing her off.  She sure was cute.

Leaves are one of the drawbacks of living in a heavily wooded area.  I had to buy a leaf blower.  I found one that attaches to my string trimmer, so I didn't add another motor to my maintenance load.  After blowing the leaves away from the house, I roll them into a big tarp, creating a giant burrito to slide down the hill and dump in the valley.

Deer season came and went.  I hung a stand on a tree in the back yard, but soon found that I had faced it in the opposite direction of that from which most deer come.  I saw about 7 deer on opening morning, including one legal buck, but I passed on them. I moved the stand to another tree with a better view.  On the second morning I saw 11, which was very entertaining.  I still didn't shoot, as most were on the adjoining property.  On the last day of the season I saw none.  It was much colder and fairly unpleasant.  I didn't even hunt that evening, much to my chagrin, as the dogs spotted a nice buck in the back yard that sauntered down the fence line after hearing their barking.

We had a nice, quiet Thanksgiving, with Savannah and Lowell coming over.  I had a long break from work, which enabled me to catch  up on raking leaves and other tasks. I did spend most of one day at an auction.  Guy I knew died earlier this year and they sold most of his stuff.  I didn't buy anything too fancy, just some inexpensive things, like a bike carrier and some plastic barrels.  I did get a little, black, cast iron schnauzer though, now adorning our fireplace.

Click to see November's photos and videos.

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