A Furever Home For Cody

 

Cody and Mom

Cody and Mom

Herro!

(Dog speak for Hello),

Ever since I can remember my name has been Cody. My first memory is of my mommy dog and litter mates. We had a human family that made kissy faces at us. They loved us and played with us.

One day my human family took us to a place with lots of dogs that were in little cages. They were not very happy. My human family left me there. I was pretty sad.

Baby Cody

Baby Cody

 

Then one day a lady came to see me. They called her “Rescue Deb”. She made kissy faces at me and said that she could help me to become a “Nice Boy”. She put a collar and leash on me and took me to her farm. Every day, she would teach me how to “be nice”. She said that a lot to  me.

Then one day, a family came to see me. They made kissy faces at me. Rescue Deb told them that I was a “Nice Dog”, but that they would have to remind me. They put a collar and leash on me and took me to live at their house. Pretty soon they forgot about me. They forgot to remind me to be a “Nice Boy”. I had no-one to play with and got pretty bored, so when the door was left open one beautiful day, I decided to go look for a friend to play with. I got so carried away that I went too far and got lost. A man came to help me and took me to that place with all the sad dogs in the cages.

The next day “Rescue Deb” came to get me. I heard her say that there was a chip in my neck with her name on it. She called my family, but they decided that they no longer wanted me. So she took me back to her farm and reminded me everyday how to be a “nice dog.

One day a lady came to see me. She made kissy faces at me and she smelled soooo good! Rescue Deb told her that I was a “Nice Dog” The lady said “Yes,  but I will teach him to be a “real gentleman” She put a collar and a leash on me and put me in her car. She gave me a treat. She called it a “Liver Cookie”. She told me that she made them for me. That is what she smelled like. No one has ever made me a liver cookie.

She has lots of names; Momma Donna, Grandma Donna, Sexy Donna, Silly Donna. But I will call her Mom. She is my human. She calls me Handsome Boy, Sweet Boy, Lover Dog, Cody and sometimes Hank. It does not matter because she loves me and I am her dog.

I do not know what a “real gentleman” is, but if that is what she wants me to be, then a “real gentleman” is what I will be.

 

Posted in Livestock Guardian, Rescue, Uncategorized | 4 Comments

A Marriage Proposal and Making Friends at Big Lots.

True Love at Big Lots

True Love at Big Lots

I took a break today from school work and moving. I went to the gym and decided to go to Big Lots to see what I could see there.

Well, I saw a bunch-believe me.

There was a woman posing in the isle where the wall hangings were. She was holding a sign that said something about “How much I love you”. A man was taking her picture. They must have thought that they were alone because when she saw me she blushed and  in her embarrassment she blurted out, “He just proposed!

Well, even though I thought that Big Lots was not a very creative place to decide to propose to someone, I clapped and squealed “Congratulations!” She showed me the ring. It was beautiful. The size of the rock gave me a clue as to why they were shopping at Big Lots. It was huge!

But who am I to judge, I was shopping there too. I spent most of my money on the farm;)

 

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Neighbors can be heroes too!

Hi Ho Silver

Hi Ho Silver

We have been spending a lot of time moving stuff to the new “farm” home.

The house that we have lived in for the past 8 years is under contract in just 7 days on the market.

One of the first things that Steve noticed about the farm; is that the driveway that leads to the garage needs burmed up to keep any water from flowing into the garage. So he ordered 14 tons of dirt to  be placed at the end of the driveway.

Once it was dumped, in nice neat little piles across the base of the driveway, it needed to be raked and tamped down, so that we could drive over it.

A few nights ago, Steve headed out to the dirt piles and I was unloading stuff from my car. When I heard a loud rumble from our new next door neighbors house. We had been for a chat the night before and they are a very nice couple. She is from California and he is from Texas. Though he is 70 (ish) he still has a lovely deep baretone voice. (sigh)

Anyway, back to my story. I looked to see what the noise was and saw our own personal Texas Ranger, wearing his white cowboy hat and driving his tractor towards our house. I smiled to myself, because I realized that our new friend wanted to be a hero and Steve was just about to be rescued.

I went out back and took some pictures of our new friend from Texas using his tractor to make short work of those huge piles of dirt.

Making Friends in All the Right Placesl

Making Friends in All the Right Placesl

Soon his wife came over on her riding lawn mower. I have secretly dubbed it Scout. She and I had a great time visiting. Soon they took off in a cloud of dust.

I turned to Steve and said “Who was that masked man?” He said “Oh, he’s the Lone Ranger” I could just hear them saying “Gettem up Scout” and “Hi-Ho Silver and away!”

More heroes for us.

 

 

 

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I think that I found our “Farm Dog”.

 

Here is a picture that I was sent. He is looking at the camera.

Here is a picture that I was sent. He is looking at the camera.

Many of you know that I have been searching for a “Livestock Guardian”. Here is what I have found.

Though donkeys can be great guardians, putting their ears back and chasing any coyote that dare to come into their pasture, they are not the snuggly animal that can come in the house and help protect Gramma Donna from the monsters that come to visit when Grandpa Steve is away on business.

Geese and Guineas can sound an alarm, but can be quickly eaten by a hungry coyote, especially if no one is home to hear them.

Lamas are just as happy to spit at you as look at you, and emus like to peck at my glasses(ask me how I know!).

I have always owned a dog and since Steve’s “Little Lucky” died about 4 months ago; I started considering a canine. Our dogs have always been house pets and not so much “working dogs” so this has been an interesting discussion.

I thought about raising a puppy with the livestock. This is a technique often used by herdsmen. Steve said “No”. Besides, there are far too many people who use female dogs as puppy mills to produce high dollar pups that may end up unloved, or in shelters.

So I turned to the dog rescues. I called a rescue for Anatolian Shepard dogs and for Great Pyrenees. I was told that there are lots of people who are raising and selling these puppies. So many of these puppies end up in rescues; that now the rescues refuse to re-home them to farmers any more. They made me fill out a form promising that my dog would be an indoor dog; that would not spend more than an hour at a time outside.

More information from “Farm Dog” rescues. I was told that in general-herding dogs like Australian Shepherds, Heelers and Border Collies; do not make the best chicken dogs. (Though I personally know some that are!) Apparently, the herding instinct makes the dog chase the chickens. The frenzy that follows excites the dog and the chicken (accidently) becomes dinner.  That can become a very bad habit!

That brings me back to one of my favorite breeds. Labradors. So I put out a request for a lab. I had tons of responses. I could have someone’s cast-away 6 month old puppy for only $500.00, or a purebred pup for $2,000. I started feeling a bit sarcastic.

My next step was to call a couple of farmers who rescue dogs from the euthanasia list. Who better than a farmer to know a good farm dog. I told them that I want a big neutered male-mixed breed dog that had a deep voice. I want him to be a lover, good with baby humans, chickens, goats and other dogs.

I think that I have found him. He is a lab mixed with Stafford shire Terrier. He has been in a foster home. He was a cute puppy, but got too big and was taken to the county at 4 months old. His foster mom rescued him from the euthanasia list. He lives with 3 human babies, chickens, goats and other dogs. He is just a little over a year old. He loves-loves-loves people. Why is she parting with him? She is a foster mom and needs the room to save another dog from the euthanasia list. He has a deep voice and is big enough to make coyotes think twice before jumping his foster mom’s fence. He is chipped, and up to date on shots. Sounds too good to be true? I get to meet him next Friday. This is not  a decision that I am taking lightly, he deserves the perfect home with a mom that loves him and a job to do, just as I am looking for a certain dog to love and to work with.

Wish us both luck and watch for updates.

 

Posted in Farm dog, Livestock Guardian, Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Mary Poppins in the Garden

Mary to the rescue!

Mary to the rescue!

One of the sad things about cabbages is that even when I space out the planting, they all come up at once. I have tried sprouting them in toilet paper tubes 2 weeks apart, and they still seem to wait for the others to catch up. I currently have 10 red and green cabbages that are all ready to harvest within a week or two of each other. I like cabbage, don’t get me wrong, it a couple of heads goes a long way.

Steve is not overly fond of it, so I get creative. I hide it in salads and sandwiches. That works for green cabbage, but he is pretty sharp and knows red cabbage when he sees it. I have started playing with fermenting cabbage and that will take up some of this healthy cruciferous. But I have another secret that I learned from Mary Poppins.

Red cabbage

Red cabbage

So, how do I get Steve to eat red cabbage? The same way that I get him to try other things that he turns his nose up at.

Everybody sing along. “Just a spoonful of sugar helps the medicine go down…”

So, I googled “Sweet and Sour Cabbage”. I made it, he loved in and I am happy, because we ate a half a head of cabbage in one setting. Now that he knows that he likes it, I will make up some more for him to take to work for his lunch next week. We do not want to over do. Cabbage can be gassy. Unh ooh! Oh well, we will stay warm tonight- “in the most delightful way”

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The Conversion is Almost Complete

Boys and their toys!

Boys and their toys!

When I first met Steve, he was a city boy through and through. He drove a two door Mustang, he wore a suit and tie to work; and he lived in an HOA. What did we ever see in each other? Well, we met at a Christian single’s dance. He was playing scrabble with the older ladies in the back- and I wanted to dance and play. He was intriguing to me because he was the only guy in the room that I had not danced with.

Someone told him that he was not a good dancer, someone else had told him that he could not carry a tune. I started teasing him and getting him to come out on the dance floor. After several years of just playing, he has lost his shyness. Now he is a 2-stepping Waltz-er who will sing me a love sing. Lucky me!

Steve never quite understood why I would spend so much time planting and tending to vegetable plants, when he could afford to buy me enough vegetables at the store. It took a much longer time for him to understand why I would want to raise my own meat. He was not sure about eating eggs that my pet chickens produced and he thought that raw milk was just gross.

Now he eats our chicken’s eggs for breakfast; stuffed with raw goat’s milk cheese. He eats the sourdough bread that I make; slathered with butter that I make from raw cow’s cream. Though he prefers the taste of raw goat milk, he is ok with the cow milk when the goat is dried up.

He loves the raw goat milk yogurt with a spoonful of homemade jam, and is disappointed when the goat milk, vanilla ice cream tub in the freezer is empty.

The toughest part of this whole thing for him was the meat. But he is coming around. He is talking about a certain riding lawn mower that he wants to buy. It has a plow attachment and a disc. He shared with me the other day that he wanted to raise alfalfa for our animals. He asked if I knew where he could find some non-gmo alfalfa seeds. He said that he was concerned about eating meat that was fed GMO alfalfa. Well, (as my grandpa used to say)who da thunk? Me. I did! I just new that it would take some time.

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Livestock Guardian Dogs

This is not a dog.

This is not a dog.

After my last blog post, I received tons of private messages from people that had great advice about which livestock guardian animal to get; in order to deter coyotes from our new property.

One suggested geese, guineas and peacocks. Though a very nice idea for some, it is my intention to be an excellent neighbor. I used to live next door to a lady that had a peacock. That will not work for me.

Donkeys or llamas got a lot of votes too. That thought intrigued me.

But my favorite was the suggestion that it was time to get a (some) dog(s).

With that idea in mind, I looked into the popular LGD breeds. My favorite were the Anatolian Shepard and the Great Pyrenees. There are lots of people in town that are selling pups right now, so they are certainly available.

But after speaking with lots of friends who actually own plain old “Farm Dogs” this is what I have found. We will not have bears or cougars, we may have coyotes. Most of these farmers say that just having a large breed dog on the place, goes a long way in causing the occasional coyote to pass by our address and look else were for their meal.

There are tons of large breed pups that head to the pound, or to a shelter once the “cute” wears off. Dogs that would love a second chance, that might not get one because they were not taught perfect indoor manners while they were still small enough to cuddle and sleep with. Fortunately, I am not looking for small or even cute. I have bunnies for that. I am looking for big and scary.

I have talked to a couple of farm dog rescues that have taken in such dogs. These rescues have evaluated these young dogs on such points as “already housebroken”, “good with kids”, “and “good with livestock” etc. I have decided that I would like a big dog with a deep voice that has been neutered or spayed. One that has been house broken would be nice, so that he/she could be invited inside.

But they would have a job to do. This wonderful beastie will not only make a presence that would intimidate coyotes, but also be my companion to chase away monsters that come out when Steve has to go out of town on business.

So,

I have made some appointments to go and visit some of these dogs. I am not in a hurry. I will be very choosey. But you know me, it won’t be long until ‘Sharing Life’s Abundance Farm” has a new mascot.

 

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