This has been an amusing day, one which has brought a couple lighthearted giggles from insignificant happenings. The first surprise I had while walking my puppie, Doogie. Doogie enjoys chew toys of materials such as felted wool or cotton rope. I have become used to seeing strings of fabric dangling from his mouth. While on our morning jaunt around the yard, my thoughts wandered from cleaning the muddy horse runs to vacuum repair to when is he going to do his business to what’s that in his mouth. I’m absent-mindedly staring at a hanging fragment that appears thicker than the usual cotton thread. Also, occasionally, he’d start to chew but stop when he saw me looking at him. I said hold on, bud, and proceeded to open his mouth at which in that split second a dead mouse fell out. I gagged, then swooped up the mangled mouse (gloves on, of course) and threw it in the garage garbage can. What is it about a little rodent that can cause one’s heart to pound?! Even my husband has difficulty going near a house mouse. I swear he screams like a girl.
My next ha-ha moment was putting on my new retro style eye glasses. I immediately could visualize myself as one of the ladies in my mother’s bridge club. Years ago I’d moan about these frames, but now I’m cool. All I need is a cardigan over my shoulders secured with a sweater clasp, the one with the little chain, some red lipstick, and a makeover.
There will be a disquietude concerning skunks for some time. I recently received a call from a neighbor whose husband was attacked by a rabid skunk. She informed me not to underestimate the velocity of these demons. My friend and her husband were relaxing on their deck and enjoying a beer, when suddenly a skunk aggressively ran towards them. Her husband fought the animal and was sprayed, fortunately not bitten. This trauma happened in broad daylight. While I had my new puppy, Doogs, (now shortened from Doogie from Dougal), at the vet’s for his rabies shot, I learned that a mountain lion and a cow were tested positive for rabies in a neighboring county to the south. Only time will tell what effect this will have on the fauna indigenous to our area.
Introducing Dougal, affectionately known as Doogie
9 mos. old, German Shepherd mix
A real Yankee Doodle, born in the month of July
Lived a month of his life behind bars
Adopted on April 12, 2010
Protects family from the ravages of a house mouse
Enjoys apples and carrots
Loves Daisy and Trix
A darling momma’s boy
old shorthaired tabby
quietly basks in sunlight
stealthily moves off
tears tissue in hissy fit
a feline jeckyll and hyde.
lenny d. cook
My aged cat is adept at attacking the bathroom tissue, an antic that began sometime in kittenhood. I have never caught her red-handed, but I have heard the fast rolling sound echoing from the blue bathroom. When she’s completed her handiwork, she thuds from the counter. When Daisy was younger, I’d hear little paws sprinting quickly across the floors and up the stairs. Now the sounds are more muffled as she maneuvers slowly to the stairs and walks up one step at a time. Her once springlike joints might be aching, but she’s satisfied with her efforts.
Daisy’s handiwork, altered to look like an artsy charcoal drawing:
Never in my wildest dreams would I have thought I’d ever be concerned about the little docile carnivore, the skunk, other than the occasional spray on the family dog. Apparently there is an epidemic of rabies carried by skunks, a scourge that began a year ago. It’s now in proportions extending beyond the ordinary, what I gather from the outcries of neighboring areas.
This past Saturday afternoon, while on the tractor in the riding arena, I observed my horses running across the north end of the field. It was nothing unusual in my mind. As I turned to face south, I saw my Rottie escorting someone from the driveway. I drove over, stopped the engine, and realized it was my neighbor from across the road. He asked if I was aware my horses were being chased by a rabid skunk. I had absolutely no idea that was happening. He proceeded to point out where the skunk was, by the fourth metal post on the north boundary. Why does everyone have eagle vision but me? The little black and white mammal was more than an 1/8 of a mile away. The neighbor said he’ll try to track it. Okay, then. Since my dog was due for her 3 year rabies shot, I decided it was a good idea to take her to the vet. Besides, I’ll get more info regarding this concern. I found out more than I really wanted to know. Firstly, there are areas that are overwhelmed by the crazed skunk, and the Department of Wildlife advises those on 10 or more acres to shoot their own skunks and bury them really, really deep. This will be a feat in itself due to the hard clay ground. When an animal is bitten, the killer toxin travels along a peripheral nerve to the brain. The incubation period is dependent on the site affected, how far it’s from the brain. This can be anywhere from 2 weeks to six months. Usually, it’s around 2 to 3 weeks. However, when it hits the brain, it’s a short amount of time until the animal expires. Most of us remember Old Yeller. There are two types of rabid reactions, a staggering drunklike walk or an aggressive run at you until it drops. A friend casually asked how fast a rabid skunk runs. I replied I don’t think one would want to hang around to find out. I have no idea how long and when things will quiet down concerning this epidemic, but I am most relieved that I didn’t bulk when the vet suggested rabies shots for the horses last year.
Who knows where the deranged skunk went?
Only the shadow do.
This could be fodder for a grade B movie.