The adventuresome life of a Great Pyrenees/Newfoundland dog in Northwestern Ontario

Posts tagged ‘black bears’

Morning Patrol: A Photo Documentary

As my faithful readers will recall, one of my duties as Head of Security on the Campbell Estate is Morning Patrol. This is a very serious undertaking. All kinds of intruders present a potential threat to my two-legger flock: Black Bears, Sneaky Deer, the Wily Wolf Gang, and Mountain Lions. Every morning I go out and drive them away so that my flock can go about its daily business safely.

Elizabeth managed to get a few pictures of me at work on Friday (It’s about time this blog focussed on ME. Flowers, fungi and birds are all well and good, but this is MY blog, after all!).

I think I see something up the Big Gravel Path!

I think I hear something up the Big Gravel Path!

I hastened up the path to investigate. My quarry ran off into the North Sector. I commenced my pursuit. Said pursuit lasted several minutes. I was too busy chasing to count exactly how many.

Mission accomplished. Returning to commence my patrol of the South Sector:

The terrain is rugged, but I can handle it...

The terrain is rugged, but I can handle it…

I'm 3/4 Great Pyrenees Mountain Dog!

I’m 3/4 Great Pyrenees Mountain Dog!

And that 1/4 Newfoundland part?

And that 1/4 Newfoundland part?

Comes in really handy at the ditches! BOL

Comes in really handy at the ditches! BOL

If you’re an intruder, and I find you while I’m on patrol, you’d better watch out.

I'm all business once I get into Patrol Mode!

I’m all business once I get into Patrol Mode!

Social Networking on ‘The Estate’

It’s been a busy week here on the Campbell Estate.

With Winter just around the corner, the two-leggers have been thinking about getting prepared for colder weather. Jeff the Tree Man was here a few weeks ago, if you remember, and he left several piles of wood for winter burning. But it wasn’t enough to keep the two-legger house warm all winter. So, something had to be done!

Our old supply lines have dried up. Jeff the Tree Man knows a lady who is in the firewood business. He gave Kay the lady’s number and she said she could sell us some wood. She came with her truck, her helper/husband, the firewood, and a surprise!

Lori the Firewood Lady also brought her Scottie, Maddie! I asked her if she wanted to go for a tour of the Estate while she waited for the two-leggers to conduct their affairs...

Lori the Firewood Lady also brought her Scottie, Maddie! I asked her if she wanted to go for a tour of the Estate while she waited for the two-leggers to conduct their affairs…

We had a great time for a while, then Maddie got a bit grouchy and decided to go off on her own.

I got worried when she started heading for the river.

I got worried when she started heading for the river.

Although Maddie sort of looks like a miniature Newfoundland Dog, I hadn’t asked her if she could swim. The river is still very high, and she’s so small! I decided I’d better at least keep an eye on her, since I didn’t really seem to be able to keep up with her. Well, I could’ve if I had to… I think….

See. I told you so. I headed her off at the pass and sterred her back up the hill to where the two-leggers were working and chatting.

See. I told you so. I headed her off at the pass and steered her back up the hill to where the two-leggers were working and chatting.

That run seemed to tucker little Maddie out though. She decided it was time to have a rest.

I don’t know what I said to her. It would have been fun to spend more time with another dog, but she was really quite aloof.

There was no way I could settle down with her here for a chat.

There was no way I could settle down with her here for a chat.

Lori the Firewood Lady’s assistant was very kind. He stored all of the dry wood in our woodshed for us while the women talked. Then they left. They took Maddie with them.

A few days later, a bear walked through the yard just before Elizabeth came to let me out of my kennel for my a.m. b.m. and run. I was so focused on my mission that I missed another less conspicuous but far more unusual visitor. Fortunately, Elizabeth had her camera handy. She took pictures so I could see. I asked her if she’d show you, too.

Good morning!

Good morning!

This Blue-spotted Salamander (Ambystoma laterale) was just heading home after a busy night's hunting.

This Blue-spotted Salamander (Ambystoma laterale) was just heading home after a busy night’s hunting.

He's only about 6 cm (just over two inches) long. Although Elizabeth has seen him several times now, I haven't met him (or her, we're not actually sure...).

He’s only about 6 cm (just over two inches) long. Although Elizabeth has seen him several times now, I haven’t met him (or her, we’re not actually sure…).

I’d sort of like to meet this fellow. Apparently, if this little amphibian feels threatened, he will raise his tail up and emit a foul-smelling scent. That’s not so unusual. Skunks do that all the time! What is really strange is that Blue-spotted Salamanders will let their tail fall off, too! I guess if they are in a hurry, they don’t want to carry all that extra weight around… BOL!

Our neighbour René came by while Elizabeth and I were working at the bookshop on Saturday. He spent the whole day helping Kay get Jeff the Tree Man’s woodpiles stashed away. I noticed he left his trailer and the log splitter out, so I think he might be coming back again. Maybe he’ll do a log splitting demo for next week’s blog! I’ll ask him…   ~:oP=

 

Flood, Flood, Go Away!

Elizabeth thought we should give you another flood update. We’re getting so used to the high water now that it seems almost normal. Our heart goes out to those on lower ground, though. On the way home from work on Saturday, we saw the people who live at the bridge checking their sandbags and stacking driftwood into a big cone formation. We think they’re going to have a giant bonfire! Maybe that will evaporate some of the excess water. Worth a try. Elizabeth says it’s probably more a case of, “When life floats you driftwood, make a fire and toast Smores!”

Our view remains similar:

We still have our new island view.

We still have our new island view.

But, there is a difference that is quite noticeable. We’ve lost an old friend.

~:o(=

This is one of the last of the Jackpines (Pinus banksiana) that have lived in our yard since Elizabeth was a tow-legger puppy, many, many dog years ago. This year's prolonged flood waters have drowned it.

This is one of the last of the Jackpines (Pinus banksiana) that have lived in our yard since Elizabeth was a two-legger puppy, many, many dog years ago. This year’s prolonged flood waters have drowned it.

Kathleen is busy making arrangements to take it down before Malcolm comes home this autumn so he can split the wood. We’ll use it to help keep the house warm this winter.  Losing this old tree will really change our view of our bay!

And all this water has given me a bit of a problem as well.

Do I really have to get my ear done?

Do I really have to get my ear done?

I keep getting yeast infections in my ears. Right now, it’s my left ear that’s driving me CRAZY. It feels good when Elizabeth cleans it and puts some Calendula ointment on it, but I really hate the drops she drips in. They tickle and feel like a creepy-crawly is exploring inside. I must admit that I do start feeling better a day or two after she starts giving me the drops, though. I don’t see why she needs to keep giving them to me after that but, every morning and every evening, the dreaded, long-snouted squeeze-bottle makes an appearance. No matter how hard I try to hide, I can never escape.

We’re getting some horrible heat now, too. Temps are rising into the high 20C to low 30C range. This means it’s getting really humid, too. And heat and humidity always seem to bring terrible thunderstorms with them. I don’t like those, but I don’t get really upset like some dogs do. I just find a quiet corner near Elizabeth and curl up into a ball until it’s all over. So far, we’ve been lucky. Just a couple of trees down. We’d use those for firewood, too – if we could find some help getting them down to the house before unidentified neighbours steal them for their own woodpile.

I’d give those thieves a good bite if I could catch them. They’re fortunate that I’m in the house a lot these days. The insects and the heat are just too much for me. You see, part of my problem is that my Spring Blow Out is late this year. We’re still trying to tease the last of my winter wool out. Sometimes I look a bit scruffy because I try to get it out myself by chewing and pulling little clumps out. I figure if I do my share, it’ll mean less of The Brush. I HATE The Brush. I don’t care if I feel much better afterward. I HATE The Brush.

Oh, all right. So I look and feel better after I get brushed. but it takes so long. Can't I just cool down with a run through the swamp?

Oh, all right. So I look and feel better after I get brushed. But it takes so long. Can’t I just cool down with a run through the swamp?

Elizabeth says I wouldn’t have to bite anyone if I lived that way. All I’d have to do is stand upwind and they’d think a bear was coming after them.

BOL. Sometimes, she’s just too funny!

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