Category Archives: Pets

Moved! Steep Grades and a Special Neighbor.

Well, it’s been a week since I’ve moved into my new home!

Yes, I had that exhale moment.

Still have a lot to do – but for all intents and purposes, we’re moved!!!

I’ve been adjusting to the longer commute, that just happens to be on a road they literally test vehicles on.  No kidding – Ford brings their trucks covered in sensors and hauling tons of weight and drive up and down the grade.  (Here’s an old article about this HERE.)

On the side of the road there are jugs of water that good Samaritans have left for struggling vehicles of the non-test type.

Regular commuters know that the air conditioning needs to be off for the majority of the trip, which, in triple digits can be quite taxing.  And when I say taxing, I mean, sheets of sweat, wet undergarments and complete loss of electrolytes.

Once that hill has been taken though, it’s worth the while.

Let’s get onto introducing you to one of my neighbors.

I say neighbor, but, it’s more like … um … a land mate?  Pet?

I’ll begin with our introduction.

I was sitting on the porch, enjoying a light breeze in the early evening.  Rose bushes were rustling, pine trees pining.  I had a hose running to water the length of the thirsty trees and looked over to check on the progress.

To my surprise, atop the picnic table was  – well … take a look yourself.

I slowly got up and put my dog inside the house.  I then calmly stated, “Um, honey?  There’s a snake on the table.”

Now, I have been aware in my 15 years in the desert that the territory comes with desert creatures.  I’ve had my run ins with an assortment of them.  But, not a snake.

I’m actually quite fond of them.  Had wanted one years ago.

But, considering our location, not all snakes want to be your friend.

My honey came out and we watched from a distance to make sure there was no rattle.  Then, got a little closer to assess the head shape.

He went in as my fascination grew.

Snake (I’ve since named Yogi – because, c’mon, pic-i-nic table!) came closer.  I grew braver.

And, closer still, into the rose bushes.

I followed Yogi around for a while, until it moved off into another lot.

 

I reached out and posted photos to a snake site.  I was informed it is a non-venomous gopher snake, good to have around!  I was also taught that if I needed it to scoot, I could spray it lightly with a hose.

I fretted a little about it interacting with my pup.  I certainly don’t want to have my time outside or hers dictated by our new friend.   Still haven’t quite worked that out yet.  (Any advice is welcome!)

Following night, we were outside when my guy announced, “Your friend is back.”  Sure enough.

 

 

This is such a low-key snake.  I mean, you can literally walk next to it.

But, the issue of the dog.  So, with Butters inside, I decided to try the spritz method.  It worked.  Yogi went back under the fence and curled up and cut its eyes at me.  Had a look of complete inconvenience and indignation.  To add insult to moisture, two sparrows alighted upon the fence and looked down upon Yogi.  I entrusted them to keep watch.

 

SO!  What to do, what to do?!  I’m an animal lover so definitely harming one is out.  Relocating it would be useless as it’s bound to be replaced by another – I mean, we have nothing but desert next to us and own 2.15 acres of it ourselves.

Must find a way to cohabitate.

I guess I’ll have plenty of time to consider just how to do that during my commute.

 

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Another Musing from the place I’m doing Laundry

It’s bonkers.

As Alice would say.

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It’s almost 3 weeks since I left my home.   And I still feel like a dog turning in circles and not able to lay down.

That got me to thinking about the homeless – the people who don’t have shelter to exhale in.  Bouncing and bouncing from place to place.  I mean, if I feel this way in my parents home – then … Gawd.

It makes me so sad.

The important thing is I have my Teddy.  My bear.  I think I understand the homeless with their carts.   Having things that are familiar to you is so important.  THEN I start thinking about people relocated due to fire or flood and all of their possessions gone.  Just gone.  Then I appreciate Facebook more.  I lost a lot of photos in my divorce.  But, Facebook is an eternal photo album and also, since they started memories, a diary.

Anyway.

 

I’ve also taken a lot of photos.

Tiny Dancer with her tongue out

Tiny Dancer with her tongue out

Tiny in the sun

Tiny in the sun

The 'lover but a biter'

The ‘lover but a biter’

Missing her mom

Missing her mom

Tiny dancer sleeping

Tiny dancer sleeping

Plucky on her window seat

Plucky on her window seat

Cacti and globe

Cacti and globe

Gorgeous Cacti

Gorgeous Cacti

Me, in the window

Me, in the window

Clearly, it’s a ‘tad’ windy.

Bottom line, it  sucks not to be home.  But I’m glad to fill in for my mum and dad that also want to be home.

And, am enjoying the pets, even if it means many scratches.  😉

 

 

Musings from … The place I’m doing laundry right now

It’s been a while since I’ve written and I’ve felt the tug and ache of not doing so.

We have family matters going on that, let’s just say, have me covering for my mum at her house – and having my son take the reins at our home.

I’ve been here … 10 days?  I feel sometimes like I’m on an island and have forgotten to carve notches into a tree to track time.

First and foremost, I miss my son, I miss my dog, I miss ‘my’ routine.

But, what I’m doing is necessary and above ‘me’ and I am glad to do it.

So let’s get to the ‘Pros’ of being here eh?  Keeping the chin up and all that!

Wait – no – first, the ‘Adjusting to the routine’ Cons.  Which aren’t really ‘cons’ but, just stuff that I wasn’t mentally or physically prepared for.

Stairs. (And trust me, with C.O.P.D  and a heart condition, this is either majorly helping, or killing me lol!)

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2 Litter boxes

Longer commute

Lonely

Feeding regimes

Medicine giving

Turning over and picking up dog

Add to that work in the middle and adjusting to new meds.

OH! And two homes worth of food.  $$$

Enough bitching.

Here’s my horrible view from the room I’m now sleeping in:

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And here is the awful view from the couch 😉

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And as for those stairs?  While I can’t breathe going up them, coming down them affords me this view:

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Have I mentioned the pool?

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I actually told my laundry lady I wouldn’t be there for a few weeks – she worries about her ‘regulars’ (gawd, I feel like a ‘John’)

So, I am using laundry thingies that play a tune when the cycle is done.

I do have ONE major issue with the washer …

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(Other than it looks like something yawning with its eyes closed) … Steelers magnets!!!!!  STEELERS!  As a Packers fan, it feels like blasphemy every time I use it.

Other than all of this – today, I accomplished much.

Cleaned – went over the river to visit my son and dog – put in a prescription and shopped for food.

I even got to talk to my mum this morning.

Now, I shall introduce you to the little clan I’m keeping.

Miss you all and I’ll write more when I can.

 

Baby Bunny Update … After the Musing.

OK, if you haven’t caught up, catch up now.  Read THIS post.

Then come back.

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I came home, fed the babies again.

Was speaking back and forth with my mom who is a HUGE animal advocate and thankfully, a huge network of people.

She found someone close who was ready and willing and able to give MY (yes, I totally bonded) babies the attention and love they deserve.

I wavered.

I had bonded.

They had made it through the night!

THEY TOOK THEIR FIRST STEPS WITH ME!!

They really did.  When I found them, they were flopping like fish.  This morning’s feeding had them using their legs, walking up me … I had to swaddle to nurse them.

 

I have finally downloaded the videos I took during my short, short time as a bunny foster mom.

The first video … When I was still trying to find Bunny Mom.

And I did.

I played Alice and searched and searched for that rabbit hole.

As I said in my first post, once darkness fell, and rain was imminent … They HAD to come inside.

Life or death situation. (I’ll speak about that later.)

They survived the night!  I nursed and they lived!

I fed them.  I bonded.  And then … My mom, who is very active in animal advocate circles, found someone close who could do better than I could.

Give them more than I could.

So, my last videos:

One of the bunnies with hiccups:

ANNNNND … My goodbye. 😦

SO! My babies are gone.

The adoptive mom was lovely.  As were her children.

They already have a bunny.   She’s a dog groomer – and as I said before, a huge animal advocate.  I slipped her my email address.

“Please tell me good or bad how they’re doing.”

I had the bunnies tucked under my cardigan, it was pouring rain. I had their little bag ready.

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And I cried, and I cried, and I cried.

Still crying.

I feel like Alice had something to do with my ‘meeting’ of these beautiful creatures.

I went down her rabbit hole.  A healing.  Being of service.  Loving something smaller and vulnerable.

And it happened with my mom.

‘Alice’ knew one of my favorite books (other than Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland) was Watership Down.

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Sensible informative part of my emotional post:

If you see a baby w/out it’s mom … Wait!

Rabbits will abandon (temporarily) their young to redirect a predator.

The babies may not BE abandoned!

There is a LOT of work involved in raising wild rabbits – they NEED the environment for immunities and such.  So, it’s not ideal to try to raise one without doing MUCH research.

Rabbits are one of the few that DON’T abandon their young if you’ve ‘touched them’.  If you give one shelter for the night, and feel it’s safe to return, RETURN IT!

My situation was dictated by a storm, a very dangerous spot that I found them in and the fact that we have many predators … Otherwise, I would have left them alone.

Ok, maybe I would have watched to be sure mom came to get them, but, I would not have taken them inside if there was no other way.

I assure you.

Two babies live today – and wouldn’t have if I hadn’t taken them in.

Of that, I’m certain.

And thanks ‘Alice’ – you know who you are – even though you’re not reading this.  I think you put those babies in my path.

 

Musings from the Laundromat: Storms, Rainbows and Rabbits edition

It’s dark outside.  Thunder is rumbling.  I’m sitting quietly at my table in the laundromat with much on my mind.

We’ll begin at the beginning.

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It has been raining on and off since Friday.  Yesterday there was a break in the weather and I was sitting outside on the phone.

Then I spotted something in the dirt, outside the gate, by the road.  Two somethings.

Squirming, small and mole like.  I like moles.  I thought I’d grab my camera and see if I could zoom in to figure out what they were.

Didn’t get much information out of that plan, so I walked over to them.

“Oh, mom … I have to go!  I’ll call you back.”

This is what my camera picked up next.

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A tiny, newborn rabbit.

Two of them were flopping blindly in the rocks.

I looked around for the mother …

I looked around for a warren.  Some sort of home they may have come from.

There was NO WAY these two made it any great distance – unable to walk or see.

I spoke to my mom again – unsure what to do, but certain I had to do something!

We have a lot of feral cats in our neighborhood – being a rural location.

Also the skies were threatening to open back up again and would surely soak these tiny creatures.

We decided I would put them in a box and keep them warm.  I grabbed a t-shirt and padded the box.  Placed them gently inside and put the box near a location I’d seen ‘crumples’ (named for its ‘crumply’ ear) and another rabbit friend spending a lot of time.

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I then placed baby carrots all around the box, went inside and waited.

No bunny came.

I finally made the decision, that they couldn’t just stay outside in the box all night.  If one cried out, a cat would be sure to find them.

So inside with me they went.

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What to do next?  They must be hungry.

After watching a video on YouTube, I threw on some shoes and in my pajamas, headed out to the nearest store.

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I scooped the less feisty one up first, held it securely, but sweetly and nursed.

I wish I had photos of that for you … But I clearly had my hands full.

They both took in several drops.

This is them after their meal.

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All tucked in for the night.

They slept in my bathroom high enough so that should one squeak, Butters wouldn’t be able to investigate with any success.

Then I was tucked in … And hoping they made it through the night.

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This morning I got up early.  Held my breath and peered inside the box.

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Alive and well!

I don’t know why I didn’t think of it last night, but I donned my fluffy robe and prepared their breakfast.

Holding each against the fluff seemed to comfort them.  They didn’t eat as much this morning, but the feisty one cried out between drops and what it lacked in size it more than made up for with volume! 🙂

Baby rabbits do an amazing impersonation of a squeaky toy.  A LOUD squeaky toy.

They also look very much like otters from the front! LOL!

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Breakfast finished, back in the box.

Here’s some more pictures:

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I hated to leave them to do laundry – but they’re ok.

They’ll get another meal when I get back and my mom used her animal network to find me someone local who will take them and care for them.

I did go back outside this morning to see if any bunny was searching …

All I spotted was this.

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I think it’s a good omen.

I think my foster babies are going to be just fine.