Thursday, April 28, 2016

So quiet

Our dwarf flowering crabapple was thick with blossoms
but it got hit by a late (and hopefully last) frost. The frost
also killed the tender new leaves on a few of the trees,
but they managed to put out some more.

Scarlett went home last week and Toquima went back to his home on Wednesday evening. We don't even have the puppy, Finn, anymore.

I'm becoming a bee keeper. The hive
is painted and bees arrive next week.
He went back to the vet on Tuesday to have his splint checked. I had messed up and left him without the cone on Monday night and he chewed into the bandage so I knew it would need to be replaced. In the process of doing so they discovered a nasty case of foot rot because the bandage had gotten wet. They felt he should stay in the hospital for a few days without the splint so the skin could dry and heal. He also needs to be kept on complete crate rest without the splint on his leg so he's going into boarding for the next week when he leaves the vet's office. That's mostly my fault for not keeping his foot dry and for leaving him alone too long without the cone. But I think it's for his benefit to go into boarding. If he was crated here 24/7, with all the other dogs running around, he'd go crazy, drive me crazy, and quite possibly end up hurting his un-splinted leg in the process. He's going to be miserable for a while, but it's his quickest road to full recovery. He's young, I think the leg will heal quickly.

As a consequence of all this, we are down to seven dogs at home now, our six plus Max, and I should probably quit fooling myself about Max. It seems quiet without the puppy, and feeding time goes so quickly I have to double check and make sure I didn't forget someone. 

I leave for Kansas a week from Saturday, and I've still been busy with yard and garden stuff around here, so it's a good time to have fewer dogs. My container garden was fully planted in two fast, furious, and expensive days this past weekend. Until recently the weather has been very cooperative, sunny days and low humidity, perfect for spring time yard work. 

After securing the staves with self-tapping screws, I cut one
of the barrels in half to make planters. The other one will be
a grill table.

Maya continues to frequent breweries. Here she
is at Blue Mountain Brewery's barrel house where
I bought two whiskey barrels at a bargain price.

This empty spot had been an overgrown mass of vines. I have
several beds like this in the yard and I've reclaimed them this
year. This one will be home to my new container-based perennial
garden, with day lilies planted in the ground around them.
This bed had mostly honey suckle vine and Virginia creeper,
the one infested with poison ivy was much worse.
That's Scarlett behind the fence, keeping watch over a small
flock of migrating pink flamingos that were displaced by
one of my bed clearing projects.

Toquima cooling in the shade after a good romp in the pasture with Theo, et al. 

Finn at the vet's office.

Theo, relaxing near Toquima, with ball in his mouth.

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Gardening with dogs

Maya playing with Finn
I have been working outdoors instead of hiking for the past couple weeks. The dogs are not crazy about it, Maya especially. It's pretty difficult to involve them in most of my outdoor work projects but this weekend I was planting my container garden. I have a big crate set up on the front porch where I've put Maya when I'm working out front. She can watch what I'm doing and she's near me and that makes her happy. I've got an even larger crate that I put out on the grass in the shade. I alternated Maya and the pup, Finn, between the two crates. I even let Finn run around off leash when I could keep an eye on him. He enjoyed it and he stuck around really well.

I got probably 85% of the plants at one nursery here in Fluvanna County called Plants N Things. Nice people, nice plants, and the best prices. The rest of the stuff I got at Strange's Nursery over in Short Pump and I picked up a few things at Lowes. I got it pretty much all planted this weekend, just need to pick up a few more sweet potato vines.

I really need to get back to hiking this week and I should be able to as I think most of the major spring outdoor clearing and cleaning projects are about done around here. The garden should be good, now it just needs to grow.
My first load of plants.

Finn loved rolling in the grass.

The empties

Friday, April 22, 2016

Starfish and Coffee for Finn

Here's a happy tune for a different, but happy dog, making the best of unfortunate circumstances. He can't hear, can't see well either, and now he's hobbling around with a peg leg. With all his disabilities and special needs he should be the poster pup for Green Dogs Unleashed. None of that bothers him, however.

Poor Finn is bored. He isn't fond of the cone but he tolerates it well. I leave it off of him when I'm around to keep an eye on him and mostly he's leaving the bandages and splint on his leg alone. He doesn't like not being able to go upstairs and mostly he doesn't like not being allowed to play with the other dogs. He is able to play and he tries, but I'm concerned about him hurting the leg although he hasn't yelped once since the splint was applied. Scarlet was pretty good about playing the role of babysitter but she went back to her home  yesterday. Toquima has agreed to take up some of the slack, but he will be going home the middle of next week as well. Maya would play with him but if I won't let them wrestle then she's not interested.

He hasn't been eating well so I discontinued the Rimadyl thinking it may have been upsetting his stomach. I'm giving him Tramadol still for pain, and famotidine (Pepsid) to help his stomach. That, plus mixing in more canned food, got him to eat all this food this morning so maybe I can at least start spoiling him with lots of food.

Vince has no use for a puppy.
He's good about being crated, especially at night. I leave his crate open during the day but close the gate to confine him to the kitchen. That limits his activity while still giving him a break from the crate. If he can't climb onto your lap, he lays down at your feet, just wanting companionship. This is a very sweet dog.

Finn is more interested in Gigi than she is in him.

Maya will play with him when he's able to play.

Trooper is our guardian against trucks, intruders, and
 large birds, but babysitter isn't in his job description.

Monday, April 18, 2016


Last Friday I picked up Finn for Green Dogs. He had gotten his foot stuck trying to get through a cat door in someone's home and had managed to hurt his leg. I wasn't sure what to expect, but he was bouncy, lively, sweet, and friendly. He was favoring the leg (right front), but it wasn't preventing him from being a puppy.

He met the pack, a few at a time, and I installed him in one of the kitchen crates. It soon became obvious that if he jarred the leg or put too much weight on it he would cry out in pain. He obviously couldn't handle the activity level of the dog yard, but the kitchen has a gate on it and a door that leads directly to the small outdoor space I've taken to calling the straw yard because I keep it filled with a thick bed of straw.

It didn't seem that he needed to see the emergency vet over the weekend, so I just kept him crated or confined to the kitchen either by himself or with Scarlett for company. Scarlett is boarding with us for a week or so and she took a liking to him. I gave him something for pain and he seemed generally fine as long as he was careful with that leg.

Monday rolled around and we went to the vet. X-rays showed that both bones in his right front leg had fractures. The good news is that they were in a straight section of the bone, there was no displacement, and no surgery was needed.

He got a splint and a cone so he'd leave the splint alone. The cone is undoubtedly the bigger problem. He will need weekly splint checks with the vet and more x-rays in 3-4 weeks. He's young, it should heal quickly.

I'm not sure of his age but I think he's a pup still. He's an aussie (Australian shepherd) mix of some sort, and of course he's deaf and vision impaired as well.  His name is Finn and he's a sweet, friendly boy. If he sees anyone setting down he climbs into their lap, bum leg and all.

Meeting Vince, Gigi, and Maya
Clay sat down in the chair and Finn
climbed right into his lap.

Saturday, April 16, 2016

Former foster updates!

I'm still busy at home with yard work and don't really have any new pics of my own to share yet, but here's a few from the adopters of recently adopted dogs.

A note about pictures:
If you send me pictures, and I do hope you will, you will notice that I crop them so people don't show. That's for a couple reasons: 1. I don't ever assume that anyone wants to appear in my blog, in fact, I usually assume that most people would prefer not to; and 2. I want to keep the focus on the dogs. Also, if you ever want to send a pic but would prefer that I not share it all, just say so. I won't mind and I'll still appreciate seeing it myself.

First, about Winnie (formerly Harper), I don't have any new pics yet, but have heard that she's settling in nicely.

Atlas, settling in and making himself comfortable.

Sam, looking good as always.
Apparently there's an obedience class in Sam's
future. That's always a good idea.

Commando enjoying his mom's sick day and making her
feel better.
This is Grenache (formerly Kip) with his new big sister. Just what a young male shepherd needs.

Grenache loves the football.

Jasso, kicking up his heels and enjoying the late winter
snow that hit last week (in West Virginia).
Jasso on a warmer day. He accompanied his adopter to a conference in Asheville recently,
returning to North Carolina just briefly.