Sunday, September 30, 2018

More Babysitting

The baby was here again for several hours.  We all went for a long hike and then he "helped" demolish some boxes for me.  Ian is a very sweet, helpful sort of puppy.

I think he has been spending too much time with cats though....

"Who me?"

Poor Ian, he does have his troubles though.  He might have the perfect life, but his tongue has grown faster than his mouth...

Such a terrible problem.

Especially when he goes to visit the bank and his cuteness overwhelms all the tellers to the point that they let him sit on their keyboards.  Like I said, too much time with cats.  Too bad he didn't manage to transfer any money into our accounts.

Oh well, his snout will catch up soon enough.  In the meantime, we all might as well enjoy it.

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Things to do on Vacation

I've been on my Fall staycation and I had thought I would get all kinds of blogging done, but.....I've barely looked at the computer.  I keep thinking of things I should write about and then I turn the computer on and some new catastrophe has happened, everyone is obsessed with politics that make my teeth hurt, a new scandal has erupted and....I suddenly feel the need to go clean the barn, walk the dog, rub donkey ears, watch paint dry....just about anything to avoid the rest of the world. 

Instead of thinking about any of that nonsense I've been doing this instead:

Riding Buddy is finally getting some saddle time with Tessa and they are getting along very well.

Getting used to Tessa's loooong strides and her silly quirks takes a little time.

Tess is very intelligent, honest and always willing to try, she also tries very hard to communicate with her rider and she gets frustrated if the rider doesn't understand.  RB and Tess have been learning to talk to each other and they are starting to have some nice conversations. 

When the sun come out, I work on this job....I can't believe I already have to paint my new house. 

If I'm not painting, I'm finally finishing the battens on the woodshed.
And hiking with my dog.
And even sitting on my couch reading a book at night. Gasp!

And when all that gets tiresome, I take a little break for some of this...

Last winter, Ben's cart got an extreme makeover.  It had a few issues that made me a bit nervous about using it so my friend Dave took it to his place to do some repair work.  It was a good thing too as one of the shafts broke in half when he unloaded it from the trailer.  He took it all apart and replaced the shafts and gave it a very spiffy paint job.  I bought Ben a proper harness and I think he looks quite handsome in his "new" gear. 

And now, my couch, and the rest of my staycation, is calling me again.  Maybe I will even get around to actually writing.  Maybe.  If i avoid looking at anything else on the Internet. 

Friday, September 21, 2018

Kissing Booth Contestants

We're always trying to figure out ways to generate more farm income around here and we are thinking about building an old fashioned Kissing Booth.  There is some debate about who should get center stage though.  I tried to tell the donkeys that they only had to work one at a time time, but they disagree - where one goes, they all go.  So, which one would you choose?

There is Ramsey, the ever-popular Chocolate Charmer, who is always first in line and the last to leave.  You will likely get a kiss from him whether you pay for it or not.  He might cost us more than he earns. 

You could try to charm the sweet, shy Emma of the coy smile....

....and the oh-so-soft nose.

Then there is the new fellow in town - a quiet, rugged, square-jawed man of mystery....

...who carries his scars with quiet indifference and tells no tales.

And then there is the Big Guy - Benjamin of the big brown eyes and soft, smooshy nose....

...Except you have to work hard for smooch on this snoozle. 

Ben is insisting on cyber smooching only.  You can love him from afar all you like, but he reserves the right to hide in corners if you actually show up.

And Connor....He says to Hell with icky, yucky kissing.  We should just charge people to throw the frisbee for him and we will be rich in no time!

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

The Middle Child

You would think this whole blog has gone to the dogs lately.  That is what happens when a new puppy comes around.  Since I posted pictures of Bess though, I am now being bombarded (by a certain someone) for pictures of the other dogs too.  So, it is Kelsey's turn.  The poor, overlooked middle-child.

Kelsey is 9 years old this year and, with Scout gone, she has graduated to the senior dog.

She is sweet, kind, sensitive and a wee bit neurotic.

She loves working the sheep and is finally, after 6 years, gaining the confidence to work the cows a tiny bit.

A dog has to be tough, strong-willed and confident to work cows and when the going gets tough, Kelsey gets going - in the wrong direction.

Any hint of stress, frustration or anger and she zooms back to the house to hide.  She also dislikes cuss words and bee-lines to the house and her hidey-hole at the merest hint of an F-bomb.

You may not know this, but the reason cows are born with horns is that they are direct descendants of the devil.  That is an honest-to-God scientific fact.  They are ALL devils.  They can sniff out any hint of weakness and will exploit it unmercifully.

Kelsey is finally starting to figure out that she just might have the power to banish the devil.  Maybe. When she's feeling tough.

On the days when the devils win least there are always sheep to intimidate.

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Clinic Notes

The Pete Ramey clinic was good, but it has not changed much so there wasn't a lot of new info for me.  It is a good clinic and I recommend it if you ever have a chance, but the couple of things I need help with are waaay out of the ordinary and I have had to make stuff up as I go.  It is working for the animals who need help, so I guess that is all that matters.

The one real gem I found at the clinic was on the display table.  They are these little silicone, glue-on shoes/slippers that were actually MADE FOR DONKEYS - even mini donkeys and mini horses.  They can be made in sizes to fit anything from the tiniest mini donkey to big mammoth donks.  They also have sizes for horses, including drafts.

Look for them here:

You would have to have someone knowledgeable in gluing on shoes but these could be a real Godsend to donkeys like Ramsey or laminitic donkeys that can't fit into any of the hoof boots on the market.

We are headed into the Fall mud season, which has just been jump started with about 4 inches of rain, and I am tempted to try some of these on Ramsey's bad foot to prevent abscessing.  I will let you know how it goes if I do.

The other little bit of useful trivia that I picked up is that the patent for Vettec's glues and pour in pads is about to expire.  I have nothing against Vettec, they make good products and I even understand why the pricing is so high.  However, one of the biggest hurdles (if not the biggest) in using glue-on shoes is the horribly high price and unforgiving nature of the glue.  It puts glue-ons into a purely elitist category that is not achievable for most horse or donkey owners, which is not good for horses or for the horse industry as a whole.  The market is about to be flooded with new glue versions, which should drive the price way down.  I hope.

Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Clinics, Frog Hunting and Puppies

I spent the whole weekend at a Pete Ramey clinic and have not had any time to write blog posts.  There wasn't much new at this clinic, but there were a couple little tidbits that could be helpful for donkeys.  I will post about them as soon as I get my ducks in a row. 

Meanwhile, Bess and Ian get center stage today....

Saturday, September 8, 2018


Connor and I had babysitting duty yesterday.  We did some hiking...

Some swimming...

....which caused the puppy to turn into a frog.

Ian had great fun with an empty peanut butter jar...

...and finally crashed for a brief nap on the hard floor under my desk (which is also Connor's favorite spot) instead of the large, cushy, expensive dog bed.

Kelsey also came along so that I could have a double dose of Border Collie frisbee mania....

Nothing like a double set of high-beam laser lights trying to drill frisbee-shaped holes into your brain.

Ian tried to be a distraction....

...but even a puppy crawling under him won't distract Connor from the frisbee.

Elva doesn't want Ian to become obsessed with frisbee like every other Border Collie so I promised not to throw it.  I'm not so sure that will actually work.

Where there is a will, there is a way, and Border Collies have enormous will.

Since we are trying to distract the little devil from frisbees, I guess he will just have to help me paint the house instead.  Elva probably disapproves of that as well, but that is what good babysitters do - they let the kids do all the fun stuff their parents don't like.  Am I right?

"Don't worry about the paint on your tail Ian, you can't get the job done with getting a bit of dirt on your hands/tail/paws/whiskers....whatever".