Getting stuff planted out has been slow. The weather keeps peeing down cold nasty rain on my days off, resulting in me getting very little planted out so far. Which is frustrating.
But some pictures anyway:
End of last year I put down black plastic on the tire beds, to kill the weeds, water of course collected, and this frog claimed this puddle, and steadfastly refused to leave even after I literally pulled the plastic out from under him. A night in the dry tire eventually convinced him to move on however. The other problem I’ve been having was the discovery that wasps were making nests under the plastic in several spots. I THINK I got all of those taken care off……
We did pull out and fill Apollo’s pool, to his delight:
I get occasionally asked what it’s like to live with “those dogs”. My responses vary, depending on the situation, the person asking, my mood….everything from highly insulting (towards my dog!), to amusing, to deadly serious. But sometimes the anecdotes just write themselves.
A note, when I refer to Apollo barking in “full voice”: legend says that a TM’s voice could be heard from mountain to mountain, and while that might be exaggeration they do have one hell of a bark when they get pissed off. In close quarters its deafening. It makes your average GSD’s bark sound high pitched and wimpy.
So, the other day…….
Apollo is sound asleep in the kitchen, the room furthest from the road.
Wakes from a sound sleep POSITIVE that the invading hordes are about to break down the door. Charges the front window in full on guard mode, complete with aggressive posture and full voice:
BARK BARK BARK
Bounces off the window, still in full voice:
BARK BARK BARK BARK
Actually stops barking long enough to look out the window. THERE MUST HAVE BEEN SOMETHING OUT THERE CAUSE I HEARD IT!!!!!!
BARK BARK BARK BARK
Stops and looks out the window again. Dammit. I know I heard something!
Looks out window.
Chuff Chuff Chuff
Sigh Must have scared it off.
Sigh Flops down in front of the window for the rest of his nap.
The Facebook page “Adorable Pets For Sale In USA.” is using stolen photos to sell puppies (actually I doubt they have puppies to sell at all, but regardless). In at least two cases I spotted they did not even have the correct breed name on the pictures. If you have posted puppy pictures online, of either your own dog or of your own litter, you may want to check over the page and flag them for stolen intellectual property.
I actually started this post a couple years ago. Got distracted and never finished it. So here it is.
I was following links this morning, as is my wont when I’m bored. Where I ended up this doesn’t really matter to this story.
They were talking about a fairly recent incident that made major news about a dog attacking a child. Again, which incident doesn’t matter (though I’m sure most of you saw it, the kid’s protector was unusual), but one of the comments caught my eye: “maybe my dog body language skills aren’t up to par, but the dog didn’t look aggressive, he was even wagging his tail!” Ok, I paraphrased, but you get the point.
It’s a fairy common comment on dog body language “he’s wagging his tail, so he must be happy to see me!”.
After I wrote the above I had to go to work, and never finished the rest of this post. Recently the next video came across my feed. It’s a long video, and although it’s not bloody, it’s the stuff that horror movies are made of if you have an understanding of canine body language. Just watch the first 30 seconds, don’t torture yourself with the rest of it.
Those dogs were playing. I wouldn’t be surprised if they still thought they were playing when they were dragged away from mother and child. And yes, both mother and child were bitten. If you do watch the whole thing please don’t tell me what the mother SHOULD have done. Watching the video it’s easy to tell what she SHOULD have done. In the heat of the moment? With her child to protect? I understand exactly what she did.
One more video. This one is my Apollo, at about the age of 1.5-2yrs of age. Watch it first without sound.
Tail’s going a mile a minute. Gotta be a happy excited dog right?
Now turn on your sound, turn up your bass (or if you’re watching on a mobile device, plug in your headphones, or you won’t hear a thing), and watch it again.
He was watching the cat I called Evil Kitty out the window. If you look you can actually see the cat at one point. He was actually quite pissed.
A wagging tail has more to do with excitement than friendliness. The dog might be wagging his tail hard cause he’s excited to see you. Or he might be wagging his tail hard cause he’s over-stimulated and excited to play and can’t stop. Or he might be wagging his tail hard cause he’s pissed and mad.
And for some reason this is something that many dog owners can’t seem to understand. I can’t count the number of times I’ve seen a madly excited charging dog, with the owner shouting behind “Oh, he’s friendly!”. Well, his tail was wagging, but that doesn’t make him friendly, sorry……
Dogs bite for a huge number of reasons. Actual aggression, fear, pain, prey drive, play…….a wagging tail isn’t a good indicator of whether a bite is likely to happen or not. The whole dog and the entire situation has to be looked at.
Now those of you dog owners who pay attention know that parvo outbreaks happen not infrequently, and unless it’s local to you most of us don’t pay a lot of attention any more. As long as your dog is vaccinated you’re not likely to have problems.
Unfortunately this outbreak in AZ might be different.
Now before everyone completely panics, the dog in the picture is being held by a rescue, and so it’s entirely possible that this dog had only been vaccinated shortly before actually getting sick (many rescues vaccinate on intake since they don’t know the dog’s history prior). Which means that the vaccine wouldn’t have had time to convince the immune system how to work. However there’s no way to be sure from the posted information. And they’re saying that they’ve seen multiple vaccinated dogs sick.
If you’re in the AZ area, or traveling through the AZ area, please take extra precautions. Even if you’re not a dog owner, if you have friends or family who do have dogs consider taking a minute to dip the soles of your shoes in bleach water. Parvo is a nasty disease with a high fatality rate.
Montreal Canada has just passed a new dog law that is getting a fair amount of attention in the dog world.
The large majority of the attention is due to the Breed Specific Legislation portions of the law. And don’t get me wrong, BSL is fucking stupid. And before someone trots out the “but pit bulls cause the most dog bites!!” trope do some serious fact checking. What’s actually true is that the MEDIA says that pit bulls cause the most dog bites. Which is like saying that the media says that all mass shootings are done with AK-47s. And BSL is like trying to ban evil black guns cause of it. Just like with every other breed and mix of dog (and “pit bull” isn’t a breed anyway) there are good dogs and bad dogs and dogs who attack other dogs and dogs who attack humans. And thats without taking into account the number of dogs who are mis-identified as “pit bulls” under such laws.
Anyway, back on topic.
What’s getting overlooked in the fuss over the BSL is the rest of the law and how it’ll affect the rest of the dog owners in the area. In a way I’m glad the folks who fight BSL were pay attention to this law cause otherwise it probably would have flown under the radar.
Authorities can enter your property without a warrant to seize your dog. If you can’t fix whatever the problem was (and it looks like “fixing” means “paying lots of money to fines”) within 72 hours they’ll euthanize your dog.
If your dog kills an animal on their list (which includes rabbits, rodents, frogs, and toads) your dog can be euthanized.
If your dog is over 20kg in weight you have to walk your dog using either a harness or a head halter, you cannot walk your dog using only a collar.
Dogs cannot be walked by someone under the age of 18.
You cannot walk more than two dogs at one time without a special license, and you must have that license on you to be provided to authorities at their request any time you are out with the dogs.
You cannot OWN more than two dogs without a special license, and then the max limit is 3 dogs.
You cannot OWN more than 4 animals within a single household period.
You cannot allow your dog to drink or swim in public fountains or ponds.
The law requires mandatory sterilization of all cats and dogs.
The law requires mandatory microchipping of all cats and dogs.
Your dog or cat can be convicted of being a nuisance (and then euthanized) for barking or meowing at all.
If your dog gets into the trash (and the law does NOT specify that this is only in public, so in theory if your dog gets into your household trash this would apply) its considered a nuisance.
Feeding your dog, or playing with your dog with a toy (even a stick) in a public dog run while another dog is present is illegal (yes, its a bad idea, but that doesn’t mean that dogs should be euthanized for it).
I know. Those of you who aren’t dog owners are probably going “WTF is Hemopet???” Heck, an awful lot of dog owners are probably doing the same thing.
Hemopet is a multifunction non-profit:
They run one of the largest canine bloodbanks in the country, filling 40% of the nationwide need for canine blood for transfusions. Yes, dogs need transfusions. Not only because of injury, but because of surgeries, or medical problems. If you’ve ever had a dog require major surgery, eat rat poison, be diagnosed with parvo, be diagnosed with IMHA, or any one of bunch of other issues, its very very likely your dog has received a blood transfusion, and there’s a 40% chance that blood came from Hemopet.
They provide a select list of blood testing, including one of the best thyroid labs you can have your dog’s bloodwork sent to.
They have run a variety of studies in vaccine efficacy, most recently proving that small dogs only need about half a dose of the standard vaccine package, reducing the load on the immune system for tiny dogs. They are also helping with a study to look at the efficiency of the rabies vaccine, to prove that (like the other core vaccines) the rabies vaccine lasts far longer than the 3yrs that the laws allows for. Hoping to reduce the number of dogs put down for rabies exposure just because their rabies vaccine had “expired”.
Unfortunately they’re in trouble. The state of CA audited them, and decided that they owe sales taxes, despite their status as a non-profit. A state Senate bill was created to ensure that non-profit canine blood banks were added to the list of not needing to pay taxes, and the Assembly modified it to state that they still owe BACK taxes, which would still require Hemopet to pay approx $81,000. Since they came in -$90,000 in 2015 anyway, $81,000 is more than can be come up with. Being forced to pay it would result in the shut down of Hemopet.
The country would lose 40% of its canine blood supply. Us owners would lose one of the best places to have a variety of bloodwork done. Not to mention the research they’ve been working on.
If you live in CA please go to the link above, follow the links, and send a letter to the committee that currently has control of the bill that controls Hemopet’s fate.
We spent the last week babysitting my SIL’s Great Pyr puppy. 5 months old, about 50lbs, and all puppy. Now we went through that with Apollo, that’s fine. And we’d introduced our dogs to the pup prior and everyone seemed to get along. But once he’d actually been in our house for a few hours Arty decided pup was demon spawn and had to die. And so we ended up having to spend the entire week spending extra time and energy to manage the dogs that we’d not planned on. Things did get better, and by Monday night Arty was actually willing to play with the pup for a bit. Plus my SIL is a morning person, pup is used to being up and out by 6am, where we’re a 2nd shift household. My Husband takes the dogs out at 3am before he goes to bed, and for our dogs, even as pups, that means they’re plenty good till after I get up at 8am. Not pup, he STILL wanted to go out at 6am every day. Sigh. They picked him up yesterday (Tuesday). The entire household crashed for an all afternoon nap as soon as pup was gone…..
I’m thinking I’m going to go ahead and hill the potatoes again, but I’m not sure it’s not too late for the tallest plants, which are shooting for the sky at an insane rate. Especially since I’m not sure I’ll be able to do it before Friday thanks to the weather, which is predicted to be quite wet, and I have no desire to get soaked to the skin just to hill the potatoes again. Maybe I’ll just buy a bale of straw…..
Anyone know a good place to buy cheap garden hose fittings and cheap fittings for a 3/8 ID soaker hose? Preferably the sort of fittings to connect them to each other as well as standard ends? Locally it looks like Tractor Supply has the cheapest (plastic) garden hose fittings (replacement male/female ends for $1.99 each), though I’ve not checked Harbor Freight yet. But the fittings for the soaker hose seem to be a bit harder to come by, Home Depot has them in 2 packs for $3, and everyone else’s prices are quite a bit higher. No, I’ve not checked the plumbing fittings yet, that’s next. I’m currently just weaving the soaker hoses through the tires, but I’d really like to stop wasting water on watering the walkways, plus, in order to maximise use of the soaker hoses the hose going over the walkways is several inches up, which is a trip hazard. I’d really like to piece in a piece of regular hose, which I can dip down and have be less of a trip hazard. I’m looking at a minimum purchase of 7 of each piece, possibly as many as 15 if the price is right. Cheap is fine, plastic is fine, I’d rather not spend a fortune till I’m sure that the setup isn’t going to change.
Arty was wondering where his green grass and warm sun went
He was very upset at the cold and snow appearing out of nowhere. He’s well on his way to being shed out for the summer, and isn’t the most cold tolerant dog to begin with.
Meanwhile Apollo was having a blast
And if you needed proof we got more than 6″ of the stuff by yesterday morning, there you go. I guess this is why he was refusing to shed for so long. His legs finally let go of their hold on the winter coat this past week, so hopefully this’ll be the end of it.
Yesterday afternoon they put out a winter weather warning for our county, another 3-6″ overnight-into Monday. Yay.
As of 8am today, Monday, I’m thinking we got somewhere close to another 3″, but it’s still coming down, so we’ll see what the totals are.
I’ve been putting off getting new tires for my car, thinking the worst of the winter weather was over, and I guess this is what I get for thinking. Drive into work today ought to be interesting, to put it mildly.
This isn’t exactly a truly “late” snow for the area, we’ve had snow on Mother’s Day on more than one occasion. But after the early warm spring everyone’s pretty well horrified by it.
I guess this is what I get for putting away my winter boots a couple weeks ago.
Greenhouse is nice and toasty though. Makes me wish it was big enough to climb into……