I love my walks with Tippy, especially in the spring. All of the trees are budding, the leaves are beginning to come out, and the grass is coming back to life. It never ceases to amaze me as to how many different shades of green there are in nature.
I also love all of the little flowers that bloom. This blue one I’ve always called a bluet, but, when I looked it up, that is not what it is. If you can educate me as to it’s identity, I would appreciate it.
And, of course, the Red Buds are blooming! Not sure why they are called Red Buds when the buds are clearly pink, but, they are beautiful.
Red bud tree near my house.
Close up of red bud blooms.
Since spring is my favorite season of the year, be prepared for more pictures of the wildflowers that we encounter during our daily walks.
I love the fact that I live in an area where I can let Tippy run free and roam a bit on her own. However, I have found I am a little hypocritical because I don’t like the fact that other people’s dogs have that same freedom.
As an example, about 3 weeks ago, mom and dad took Tippy for a walk in the neighbor’s field. When they got back near the house, there were two Pit Bulls down the hill, barking at them. They didn’t seem to be aggressive, but I was not happy that they were out roaming around. I was a little concerned that they might come over and hurt Tippy when I left her tied out or that Tippy would start roaming with them and get in trouble.
A few days later, Tippy and I went for a walk. I heard a bark from behind me and glanced back. Seeing a black dog, I thought it was Tippy and said, “What are you barking at?” That’s when I noticed it was one of the Pit Bulls. I continued on my walk, which included going back toward where the dog had been. I remained calm, because, again, he didn’t seem aggressive, but picked up a walking stick, just in case. He and his friend were down on the side of the hill when I got back, both barking. I just walked on. When I turned around to close the gate, both of the Pits were standing there. I said something to them, Tippy heard me, and came running from the house. She looked at them through the gate for a minute. I started to grab her collar and make her go back to the house, but I was afraid that would convey the wrong energy. So, I just watched to see what would happen, ready to intervene if needed. Tippy went through the fence to where they were and, fortunately, they greeted each other in a very calm manner. So, at least I know they aren’t aggressive towards her.
It is now pretty much a daily occurrence that I see them, either in the field, in my yard, or on my porch. Tippy gets very excited when she sees them, but, like a mom who doesn’t want her kids to hang around with the “wrong crowd,” I won’t let her out until I think they have been gone for at least 30 minutes. Here is how it played out a couple of days ago.
Tippy and I heard one of them barking at the gate. It was the white one, which seems to be a little more timid.
While Tippy was busy at the front of the house, I heard something on the back porch. Sure enough, it was the other one. He seems to be more bold. When I saw this picture, I thought it was interesting that my eye is reflecting in the glass on his neck because I was“keeping an eye on him.”
A few minutes later, they were both out back.
Tippy tried her best to get me to let her out so she could go play, but I persevered.
Mom, can I please go out to play?
When I did decide to let her go out, I had her sit/stay until I got the garage door open and made sure they were gone.
Once I gave her the okay, she started smelling where they had been.
Where did they go?
They were here!
She did go to try to find them, but was back in about 10 minutes. So, either they were gone or she tired of them quickly. At least, for now, she isn’t wandering away with them.
I will just continue to keep an eye on them and Tippy and, if something needs to be done in the future, I will address it then. Hopefully, that won’t be necessary.
I am trying to get in a little more exercise in an effort to lose some weight. Yesterday, I decided to walk for 45 minutes. Tippy’s usual walk is only about 25 minutes. In an effort to extend the time and not get bored, I walked places back in the fields that we don’t usually go. I still had 15 minutes left when we got back to the house, so, I did laps up and down the driveway.
On the first lap, Tippy came running past me – I’m convinced, just to show off – and went under the fence into the neighbor’s field. On my way back, I was startled by something running down the hill and into the driveway. It was a squirrel, which, upon seeing me, was just as startled as I was. We stared at each other a few seconds and then he did his horror film impression (darting back and forth in the road) before running on down the hill into the woods.
On my next lap, I heard a noise in the woods, looked down, and saw it was Tippy. She let out an excited little bark and then took off running. I figured she was chasing the squirrel, so was surprised when I saw a red fox come streaking across the driveway in front of me with Tippy right on it’s tail. I yelled at her, but, she was so intent on chasing the fox that I’m sure she didn’t even hear my voice. I was just wasting my breath.
I was a little bit concerned about how far/long she would chase this new intruder into her territory. But, fortunately, she came back in less than 5 minutes. Since everything happened so fast, I didn’t get any pictures of the actual chase. I did, however, get some pictures of Tippy when she got back.
Mom,it wasn’t easy, but I chased whatever that was away!
I need a drink after that!
In case you have never seen one, here is a picture of a red fox. They are actually a pretty animal and help keep the the squirrel and rabbit populations in check.
We never know what we are going to see when we go for a walk. That’s one thing I love about living out in the country!
Seeing the fox running made me think of the song “Fox on the Run” by Sweet, which I grew up listening to, hence the name of this blog post. Here is the video, if you would like to listen.
The temperature was perfect for Tippy today, low 22°F and high of 56°F, so she was outside almost all day. I went out to check on her around 3 o’clock and was about knocked back into the house from the sickeningly sweet, distinctive smell of a skunk. I know that they only spray when they feel threatened or when trying to ward off a rival male during mating season. I’ve smelled skunk around here for the last couple of weeks and have seen many dead on the roads. Since the weather has been warmer than usual, I’m assuming that mating season has started early. So far, we have been lucky and Tippy hasn’t gotten sprayed. But, I knew it was bound to happen someday. Unfortunately, today was that day. Skunk – 1. Tippy – 0. Me…..I think about a negative 10 since I had to clean her up.
Fortunately, I have cedar oil shampoo for her. The groomer that I got it from said that it works great on skunk oil, just to be sure and put it on before wetting the dog. It seemed to work pretty well. The only problem was, Tippy balked at being drenched in the very cold water coming from the outside faucet. I had to come in and get a bucket of warm water to finish washing her and rinse her off. I could still smell it and discovered that it was on her collar. Changed that and washed it. There is still a faint smell, but think it is just lingering in the air. Tippy is getting tired of me sniffing her to see if she still stinks. Hopefully, she’ll be more careful if she encounters another one.
Has your dog ever been sprayed? If so, what do you use to clean and deodorize them?
The other day, I was sitting at the computer and Tippy was in the bedroom. I heard a low growl followed by a tentative bark…..grrrrr-ruff. I thought she might have been sleep-barking, so ignored her. Then, I hear it again. Grrrr -ruff. Grrrr – ruff.
Since she doesn’t bark unless something is amiss, I decided that I had better go check it out. When I looked, she was staring out the door into the woods. Grrrr – ruff. She looked at me and then back into the woods. Grrrr – ruff.
I walked over to find out what she was unsure about. I didn’t see anything. No person, squirrel, bird, etc. Grrr-ruff. Finally, I got down on her level so I could see things from her perspective. And there it was!
Do you see it? The ghost on the porch?
Not an actual ghost, of course, but a reflection of the bed “floating” around. Grrrr – ruff. I sat down and reassured her that I saw what she was trying to show me and that it was okay. She sat on my leg for a minute, looked at me and back out the window a couple of times, and then went on about her business. If mommy says it’s okay, it must be okay.
So, if seeing is believing, I’m pretty sure that Tippy now believes in ghosts. How about you?
I love old buildings. I want to know their history and wish I could see them as they were in their glory days. But, when they have outlived their usefulness, they are often abandoned and left for nature to reclaim. Such is the case for the old gristmill by the river near my house. My dad tells stories of taking corn there to have it ground into cornmeal. The owner would keep a set portion as payment. I assume he would then sale his portion to those who didn’t have corn, thereby getting the money he needed for essentials. It was a simpler time, but probably much harder that we realize.
Tippy and I drove by there today. There is no longer anywhere to get a vehicle off of the road to stop and look around, so I took a picture out of the truck window. I wish someone had reclaimed it before it got in this shape. How neat it would be to see corn ground there again, using water power to turn the mill!
Wanting to get some mileage on the truck, we drove on and made a big loop along the river and back to the house. I had hoped to find somewhere to let Tippy get out and explore, but there really wasn’t anywhere. All of the places on the river that we used to be able to stop are now closed to the public. I think the main reason that the owners put up fences was that irresponsible people started leaving their trash laying around. I certainly can’t blame the owners for wanting to keep their property safe and clean. It does make me a little sad and nostalgic, though.
It didn’t matter to Tippy that we didn’t make any stops. She was very content just to have had a 30 minute truck ride. After taking in all of the new sights, a nap was in order.
I cracked up when I peeped in and saw her toys lined up and perfectly spaced!