Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Penelope's post

Yesterday's post was all about Hardy.  Today is Penelope's turn.

Penelope is a young adult, somewhere between two and five years old.  Based on her energy and puppy-like behavior, I would come in at the lower range of that estimate.

House trained, yes; crate trained,  yes; kid friendly, yes; cats, I don't know.  She is vaccinated and spayed, of course.  She weighed 101 at the vet and is putting on weight every day.  She would be pretty perfect at about 110.

She's good indoors, but her head is counter-height, so anything up there is up for grabs.  Given the chance, she will climb into your bed, but she will be content on an extra large dog bed on the floor.  (I once adopted a Dane to a single man who didn't have much furniture in his house, but he had two twin bed mattresses on the floor as dog beds for his two Danes.)

She's dog-friendly, but at meal times she needs to be fed alone or she will go after another dog's food as well as her own.  That big tongue hangs out of the right side of her mouth most of the time.  She's very sloppy when eating and drinking, although she eventually cleans up most of the food that she spills out and spreads around.  She dips her snout into the water bowl as she drinks.  She washes off her tongue and leaves a bowl full of slime.  Be prepared to change the water frequently.  You might as well learn to embrace the low hanging tongue and the concomitant slime, it is omnipresent.

She loves, loves, loves to run.  She will play with other dogs but her idea of play is to run after them and tackle them.  I don't think she'd be welcome at a dog park with anything other than sizeable and like-minded play companions.  She loves to run, I can't say that enough.

I'm not sure where we are at with applications on this girl, but anyone who is interested in her should submit one to Green Dogs Unleashed asap.

Penelope running after Max

Penelope and Max
Theo, Hardy, and Penelope

Hardy was running after Theo.  Penelope intervened with a
t-bone collision into Hardy.
Penelope with Hardy in the shade.
Penelope sitting in the shade next to me, watching
Theo and Hardy coming back with a ball.

Monday, June 27, 2016

Summertime with Hardy

It's time to get serious about finding Hardy a home.
Hardy (left) and Theo

 Hardy is young, probably around a year of age, maybe a little more but not yet two.  He's got good recall, but I still think that dogs should go to homes with fences, it's the first line of defense against the hazards that can befall a dog living in a human world.  It's a degree of freedom for the dog and peace of mind for the human.

Max (left), and Hardy and Theo, all looking for a tennis ball in the tall grass.

Hardy and Theo, both being tackled by Penelope
Hardy is crate trained and he goes in willingly and stays in there quietly all night.  I'd consider him housetrained too.  He doesn't mark.  I still crate him at night and whenever we leave.  He's good with dogs and I think he would benefit from having a relationship with an older sibling like he has with Theo.  Hardy will still bark at strangers.  He needs a confident owner who won't let him get away with barking at people.  He makes friends easily enough, but it takes just a little patience and effort on the part of the person.
Penelope (left), Max, and Hardy (right front)

There's a number of applications in on Hardy and I think they are in the home visit stage of the process.  I've probably held onto him longer than I needed to, but he's such an easy foster there has been no need to rush.  This is one really great dog.  Choosing among applicants is tough.  I want him to go to the best home possible, for him.

Sunday, June 26, 2016


I did get out in the canoe this morning. The river was fairly high and still slightly murky from recent rain so it was a pretty fast trip. I covered the 7 mile route from the Crofton boat ramp to the Palmyra boat ramp in about 2.5 hours.

I saw a bald eagle shortly after starting out, and again near the end of the trip, but he doesn't show up in the pictures. I spotted a pair of otters swimming near the shore as well, but the primary wildlife of the day were turtles. I started about 8:00 a.m., the sun was up but it was still low enough that one side of the river was shaded and the other was in the sun. The turtles were out sunning themselves on the warm, sunny side.  They would climb up onto limbs and logs that were partially submerged along the river bank. As I approached they would slip into the water, sometimes almost silently, but if they were fairly high up they made a pretty big "plop" as they hit the water.  They are pretty shy and most slipped out of sight before I got close enough for a picture, but a few brave souls stood their ground and didn't seem to care about or feel threatened by me.  At one point I saw what must have been a dozen of them slide or dive down the river bank en mass.  I didn't see them until they moved, but then it was just like a small landslide and they disappeared in the water in an instant.  Moments later I saw two or three of them poking their little heads up above the surface of the water, to see if the threat (me) had passed.

I saw a bald eagle again near the end of the float. He surprised me by letting me float almost directly underneath his perch before taking off. I got a good view but no pictures. I saw something disappear into the woods up on the river bank, two somethings, but I still have no idea what they were.  Mammalian I believe, but beyond that, I don't have a clue.  I also saw the head of something bobbing through the water in an area of some minor rapids.  I didn't get enough of a look to venture a guess as to what that was.  River monster probably.

This isn't very clear, but you can see a line of geese in the water along the shoreline. They didn't
fly off but they did get as far away from me as they could as I floated by.  There were four adults
and probably 8 young geese that must have been this year's hatchlings.

Saturday, June 25, 2016

Slow start to a busy day

Samantha got me up early this morning as she always does.  After letting her out to stroll, I started the morning feeding and shuffling routine, until everyone was out, fed, and into their daytime positions.  Then I actually got back to bed for a while with a cup of coffee and watched another episode of True Blood (downloaded from Direct TV On Demand).  I hadn't watched the series when it was new, but I'm tired of re-watching all the episodes of The Big Bang Theory, Simpsons, and Archer that I've got recorded.  I'm still on season 1, but I'm enjoying it.

My bee hive.  I think its doing well, but
what do I know?  It's hard to get pictures
while I'm working the hive, but I'll try
the next time I go into it.
When I finally did get up I went outside and just started doing stuff.  The completed list looks something like this:

-  Mowed the ditch along the road
-  Sprayed weeds, driveway and fence line
-  Picked up/put away stuff outdoors
-  Trip to dump, dispose of old A/C unit, trash, grill, and rugs
-  Fill van with recycling materials to go to town
-  Run dogs in pasture
-  To town for Gigi's food
-  Fill van with gas
-  Drop off recycling, glass, paper, plastic, and cardboard
-  Bake pie in new oven
-  Evening feed
-  Back to town for grocery shopping
-  Finish work

Tomorrow I'm putting the canoe in the river, with a clean slate and a clear conscience.

The daylilies are in bloom in the pasture.  Here are just a few of them.

I'll start off with a pic of Hardy because most of
the rest are of Penelope, mostly because she still
needs to find a home and she's very photogenic,
especially when she runs.  And oh, she does run.

That's Theo on the left.  Penelope likes to run but she has no
interest in running after the ball.

That's Hardy in back on the left, Penelope on the right, Theo in front.
Max and some of the daylilies

A chocolate chess pie
This is my new oven and the start of a kitchen
remodeling project that I hope will soon get underway.

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Penelope's vet visit

Penelope came to us fully vetted, except for a rabies vaccine.  That is obviously essential so we went to the vet today for that, and to have someone take a look inside her mouth.

Checking in at the clinic
She was great with everyone she met and no one had anything less than wonderful things to say about her.

We had thought that the low hanging tongue was perhaps a result of missing or damaged teeth on the right side of her mouth.  That didn't appear to be the case.  It's possible that it's a neurological problem, but that is somewhat belied by the fact that she can withdraw it at will, and she can eat and drink successfully (if messily).  Perhaps it was due to a trauma, or it may just be a genetic anomaly.  There doesn't seem to be anything really wrong with it, and it doesn't bother her; so, if you'll forgive the phrase, it just is what it is.
If she was nervous about being
at the vet, she sure didn't show it.

On the ride in.  That blond patch is Maya, and
Trooper is in the crate. They came along.
We stopped by Green Dogs' headquarters on our way home to see Erika.  Penelope once again passed the baby test.  I learned a bit about her past as well.  She had come in as a stray, but her owners were known and were notified but they never reclaimed her from the shelter.  A Great Dane rescue group had passed on the dog because they had been told that she didn't do well with other female dogs.  I'm not sure what that assessment had been based on, but she has lived with Maya, Gigi, Samantha, and Scarlett since coming here.  Yes, she decked Gigi out in the pasture, but she did the same to Max (twice), and that was really nothing more than big dog play.  I don't think I'd take her to a dog park, but I can't imagine her having a problem living with another dog once they got acquainted.  She is young and very playful.  She will push another dog off their food if given the chance, but all that requires is separate feeding and a little watchfulness and common sense.

Speaking of feeding, she weighed in at just over 101 pounds today and I think she could stand to put on at least 10, maybe 15 pounds.  I'm now feeding her four cups of food three times a day and she's loving it.  I expect she will begin to pick up some lean muscle mass.  She's a real sloppy eater and drinker because of the tongue, but she does her best to clean up spilled food and I send Vince or Samantha out to clean up after her when she's done.

A reprise of the baby test with Erika and Oliver.

My assessment:  Great Dane, great dog.