Wednesday, October 18, 2017

The red fox

Saturday morning started out with a boom. Seriously. A big boom! The neighbor down over the hill fired a shot at daybreak! Dad said it sounded like a black powder muzzleloader. The deer hunters have a black powder season so lots of the neighbors have those guns. 

Mom and I woke up to the big boom. Mom muttered something about idiots but since she wasn't talking about me or Dad, I went back to sleep for a bit. When we finally got up, Mom took me straight-away to the door like she always does. I knew as soon as I stepped outside something was wrong. I smelled it and pushed Mom back inside. She didn't know what was going on and fussed me for almost knocking her down. 

I growled and growled so she started looking out the windows and that's when she saw it lying in the yard beside the patio - an injured red fox. Mom opened the bathroom window and the fox tried to get up and run but it couldn't. Its hind legs were paralyzed but it was still strong enough to drag itself a few feet and hide under the hostas. 

Right away she told me it had been shot. Mom went into the bedroom and told Dad he had to get up and put the fox out of its misery. I had to think about that for a minute and I'm pretty sure she meant the fox was in a lot of pain and it made her sad. It made Dad sad, too. He got up and didn't even put on his pants before he loaded the rifle. He said we couldn't let the fox suffer any longer than necessary. 

Dad's a really good shot. 

Mom and Dad used the backhoe on the John Deere to bury the fox. Even though they don't like having foxes around, they were still sad they had to put it down. They're kind of angry with the neighbors, too. They say if you load your gun to hunt, you'd better know how to make a clean, quick kill. They say it's wrong to let any animal suffer. 

I agree.

Sunday, October 8, 2017

There were sticks everywhere!

Yesterday, Mom, Dad, and a bunch of people cut down a tree. I got to meet cousin John. He's pretty cool. I like his red polka dot hat. 

The tree that needed cut was a big oak. Like, really big. Mom rented a big lift and put Uncle Mike on it. Uncle Mike is fearless. He went up so high - all the way up as far as the lift would go. They didn't ask me if I wanted to ride along and I'm glad they didn't. I would have been scared. At least I didn't have to run away and let them all know that. It would have been embarrassing. 

Most of the time I had to watch from in the house. Mom and Dad worried a log might fall on me and they may have been correct. Things falling from the sky isn't something I know to watch for. I got to go out and greet everyone, and then watch while they got the equipment positioned. Then I got to go back outside when Uncle Mike was finished cutting. Best of all, I got to eat lunch with everyone! Mom fixed me two plain hamburgers! I did do a lot of running yesterday. It's hard work keeping an eye on Dad when he's on the John Deere but I'm in really good shape and can run beside him. 

I found a bunch of really good sticks while everyone worked. Mom and Aunt Donna played fetch with me. The guys - not so much. They were focused on getting the job done, but Mom knows it's important to make me feel like one of the pack. 

Today me, Mom, and Dad are going to burn a brush pile. There's a lot to burn, too. I'd say it's a waste of perfectly big sticks but I know I can find more. 

I just hope Mom fixes something good for breakfast. I burned a lot of calories yesterday!

Saturday, September 30, 2017

The little round red thing

I love my ball! I love it soooooo much!! I'll do anything Mom says if she offers to play ball with me. She tries to be sneaky and call the ball the "little round red thing" but I've caught on to her.

I'm Deuce. I know!

It was a beautiful autumn Saturday so Mom and Dad decided to cut down a few trees along the lane. I was worried at first. Whenever they want to play outside with power tools, I end up left inside. Today was different. This being almost two years old is really paying off!

Turns out the trees they wanted to cut down were small ones. Dad got on the John Deere and Mom used the battery-powered chainsaw. She didn't need the big Stihl for these. I don't know much about trees, but Mom said if they cut down the small maple, cherry, and poplar trees, then the little oak tree would have room to grow big and strong.

We were outside for a couple of hours. I ran around in the woods and had a good time while they worked. I know how to stay aware of which way the tractor is moving and to keep wide. When they hook a chain around a downed tree to drag it, I know to stay to the rear. I didn't know how to do that last fall.

But the best part of the day was when Mom played ball with me. I love the little round red thing.

Sunday, September 24, 2017

The big, bad kitchen floor

Mom's not happy and when Mom isn't happy, ain't no puppy happy. 

I don't know why, or maybe I can't remember why, but I'm afraid to walk across the kitchen floor. It doesn't make any sense. I used to run through the kitchen all the time. Now it scares me. 

Mom is trying to be patient with me, but she knows there's no reason in the world for me to be afraid. It's only the floor. We all walk on the floor.  Heck, I sleep on the floor. The floor doesn't move or anything. It just lies there. 

I wish I knew why I got frightened. I'm Deuce. I'm a big guy, not a baby. So why am I behaving like a little scared puppy? It's sort of embarrassing. 

Mom's being patient with me and helping me work through it. She puts her hand on my shoulders and tells me it's okay. Once I take the first two steps into the kitchen, I'm better. I can do it.

But you know what's really confusing? Sometimes I forget I'm scared and trot right through! 

No wonder Mom told me I'm behaving like an idiot. 

Monday, September 4, 2017

A big change

Today was very different for me. First off it's something called Labor Day. It sounds sort of fishy to me because a lot of people are on a holiday but Mom and Dad know things I don't. 

The day started out okay. Mom fixed me breakfast. She fed Dad, too. I'd better mention that. Breakfast is important. Then they got ready to go away. I was not happy because when they go away without me, I have to go in my crate and it's boring. But today was different. Mom said I could stay loose in the house! 

I was good all day. They left at eleven in the morning and didn't get home until six in the evening! I really had to pee but I held it all day long - just like the good dog I am. Mom told me she was sorry they were gone so long, but the place they went has no concept of how valuable time is or how important it was to her to get home to me. I think she was more stressed than I was that I had to hold myself for awhile. 

But that's not the strange part of the day. They left in my truck and came home in a different truck. Well, you know I barked like a big dog at first because I didn't know it was them. Mom came into the house and got me lickity-split and showed me how to jump into the new pickup. The back seat has a door on each side! I can jump in from Dad's side and that is so cool. I like it! I bet Dad likes it, too, now that he won't have to go around to the other side to let me in. It'll be a lot easier for him when it's just the two of us. He still needs to put on a set of running boards to make it easier for him to get in and out, and then the truck will be as good as old Silver. I wonder what Mom will name this blue truck?

Mom fixed dinner and then we all went for a ride in the new pickup. I had plenty of room to sit and I can see out the windshield better now. Plus, my windows go up and down! I like that, too. The back seat is what Mom calls a split seat. She says it's a one-third to two-third split. The smaller seat is perfect for me! I might get to sit there when Mom is along. 

I liked the old truck but I'm learning that things change. The new blue truck has made Dad really happy so I'm happy, too. I wonder where he'll take us tomorrow? 

Friday, September 1, 2017

It's still dark outside

Mom is on vacation today. She's awake but she won't take me outside to play ball. I know it's still dark, but I can see really well. If she throws my ball, I'll hear it land and be able to find it. If she'd get me a glow-in-the-dark ball - problem solved!

Hey, Mom! Get thee to Amazon! We're missing valuable play time!!

Why no picture of me? Oh, yeah. It's dark. 

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

What's an eclipse?

Mom and Dad talked about something called an eclipse for a couple of days. I didn't get it. The sun and the moon do their things. The sun shines and I wake up so I can play and eat. The moon comes up, it's bedtime, and Mom and I go to bed. But parents are a little crazy sometimes and they seemed to think the moon passing between the sun and the earth was a big deal. 

The big deal for me was Mom came home to spend the afternoon with me and Dad. She fixed sandwiches to eat on the porch and that was a good thing. Like, really good. I love ham and cheese! 

While Mom and Dad sat outside, I snoozed inside Mom's office. She left the door open so I could go in and out through my fancy screen, but the deck boards were a little hot for my paws. Inside was better. 

Everything was normal for awhile. The nutsy squirrels were running around, the birds were singing. I even heard a hawk. But then it got really quiet. I didn't hear anything except the rooster who lives down the road. Mom and Dad talked but they almost whispered. It looked sorta different for being in the middle of the day. I thought about coaxing Mom to play Frisbee in case I had my times mixed up and it would be bedtime soon, but then everything went back to normal. 

Dad said it was all over and he was ready to go back inside where it was cooler. Mom said okay and they came inside with me. 

I don't guess I'll ever understand the excitement about an eclipse. Mom says it won't happen again in my lifetime so I'm really glad we got to share it as a pack. 

Friday, August 18, 2017

Riding along on a Friday night

I got to ride in Mom's Charger tonight! It was great! Mom put my old blanket across the seat and off we went! Dad rode shotgun.

They call it riding shotgun because in the old western movies the stagecoach driver always has someone with him for protection. That's Dad. He protects us.

Anyway, Mom had to go to town to get something called "shock" for the pool. The water got a bit of a green tinge to it and Mom did not like that at all. She's never had that happen before but she knew what to do. Mom knows a lot.

I was surprised when she said I could ride along in her car. I don't get to do that very often. It's okay. I like Dad's pickup a lot better. I have to sit or lie down in the car. I can move around better in the truck. But I do know how to behave in her car. I'm old enough now to know when to be a good dog and this was the time.

We went across some back roads and I got to look out the window at everything. That was cool. I even got to bark at some dude on a mower. Dad was playing with his phone and when I looked between the seats to see what he was doing, he took my picture. I was really studying the phone! You can tell I was! I'm curious about all sorts of things and what's important to Dad is important to me.

What I didn't like is when Mom got out of the car without me. I hate it when she gets away from me. I can't protect her if she doesn't take me with her. I was really glad she wasn't in the store very long. She went in, got what she needed, and came straight back. I let her kiss me on the head when she got back in the car. 

It was a nice outing but I was glad to get home. We left before I ate my dinner - my fault, not Mom's. I could have had my dinner earlier because it was in my bowl, but I decided to wait. So while Mom put the Shock in the pool, I chowed down. I was hungry!

I'm Deuce! I'll sleep good tonight 'cause my belly is really full. 

Sunday, August 6, 2017

Let's talk

It's time for me to have a serious conversation with Mom and Dad. 

Yesterday was Dad's family reunion. I had to spend a couple of hours in my crate. Ok, I get it. They worry I'll get bored and do something they won't like to entertain myself. It could happen even though I'm pretty much all grown up now. I know a lot of things and I know chewing up the throw pillows and digging in the trash can are big no-nos. 

I don't like it when Mom and Dad go away without me. Sure it hurts when my people don't include me, but I understand. Sometimes they just have to go take care of business. 

They said they were going to a family reunion. So how come Mom came home smelling of hound dog??????  I did not like this. 

And I get it that Dad wanted to spend some time with Uncles Bob and Jim playing poker and losing money. (He could have bought a whole big bag of Grillers with that money!) Mom says it's bonding time and I get bonding time is important.  So how come Dad came home at one o'clock in the morning smelling of two different mixed breeds????  Did he think I wasn't going to notice???? 

There had better be some good compensation for this. 

My feelings are a little hurt. Mom has apologized to me. She said if she'd known dogs were allowed, I could have gone along. Dad is still sleeping and I'm going to ignore him until he apologizes, too. 

I'm a good dog. I don't pee on human things. I don't bark much. I don't, nor have I ever, snatched people food off the table. I listen to what Mom tells me. I'm polite and well-behaved when Mom says the situation calls for it.

I'm Deuce, and I'm family, too. 

Sunday, July 30, 2017

Walking is good!

The rain is gone! I'm so happy that first thing this morning I could go outside and not get wet! I know I'm a Labrador Retriever and we like water, but rain is not water. Rain is rain. It falls from the sky. Water is in the creek. That's the fun stuff!

Mom was happy the rain was past, too. I knew when she got her straw hat, the one she sprays bug repellant on, we were going for a walk. I love to go for walks with Mom!

We live out in the country so we have lots of places to go where we don't see cars. Mom knows all the best roads and paths, and where the best spots in the creeks are. We were out for almost an hour and didn't see a car or a person until we got back to our road. I didn't have to go on the leash once and I think that's a good thing. Being more mature is starting to pay off with extra privileges. 

Mom took a video to show Dad how I keep an eye on her when we're out alone. I always look back to make sure Mom is where she's supposed to be. And when I go to her and sit, I get a treat! 

When we got back, Cousin Dave had Bella with him. I think I scared her because I got all excited and wanted to play. I ran around and around and she wouldn't join me. Maybe some day. She's younger than me, you know. 

I was pretty tuckered when I got home. I stretched out on the floor beside Dad's recliner and took a quick nap. I did earn it, after all. 

I'm Deuce. Helping Mom get all her steps in for the day is what I do.