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

Posts tagged ‘rides’

Just Another Spring Day…

Spring is not my favourite time of year, in case you haven’t picked up on it yet.

  • The fluffy white stuff does a disappearing act
  • It gets too warm out
  • I seem to spend an increasing amount of time on the leash
  • By the time Elizabeth allows me to go off leash again, I can’t run on the river anymore
  • I have no privacy when I do my business (I must do it on leash or hold it forever)

There is an up side, though.

  • Elizabeth and I start walking together a lot more
  • The two-leggers start opening the windows on the growly beast when we go for rides

The other day, we went for a ride to the place where the two-leggers get their mail. It was a fine day for a ride.

I do love a ride in the growly beast.

I do love a ride in the growly beast.

Then we went to one of my favourite places – the building where the two-leggers get their big mail (I like it because it’s near Doyle the Dog Food Man’s shop, and so we see a lot of two-leggers out walking their dogs here…).

Keeping an eye on goings on while Kay is in the big mail building.

Keeping an eye on goings on while Kay is in the big mail building. Not many dogs around today…

Saying hello to a passerby. He was very nice, but he didn't have his dog with him.

Saying hello to a passerby. He was very nice, but he didn’t have his dog with him.

 

On the way home, Elizabeth asked Kay to stop the car early so she could take me for a walk. It’s still pretty miserable walking in the woods – at least for two-leggers, so we spend a lot of our walking time on the gravel paths for now. Let me show you what I mean, and how things are changing around here. I asked Elizabeth to take some photos for you.

The tunnels under the gravel path are thawing out, so the water can run through them again. This has resulted in some rather odd-looking ice floes...

The tunnels under the gravel paths are thawing out, so the accumulating splashy wet stuff can run through them again. This has resulted in some rather odd-looking ice floes as the splashy wet stuff recedes…

This is what happens to the fluffy white stuff in spring. It turns to splashy wet stuff and runs away. I wonder if it finds Winter somewhere else?

This is what happens to the fluffy white stuff in spring. It turns to splashy wet stuff and runs away (I wonder if it finds Winter somewhere else?). On its way, it cuts paths wherever it goes, except on the bedrock. Here it is cutting a way through the Big Gravel Path.

There is still lots of fluffy white stuff in the woods. *sigh* If only I could get to it. I wish I didn't have to stay on the leash all the time.

There is still lots of fluffy white stuff in the woods. *sigh* If only I could get to it. I wish I didn’t have to stay on the leash all the time.

We were taking so long to come home that Kay began to wonder what we were up to. So, she decided to come out and meet us. We found her resting at the top of a hill on the Little Gravel Path. She was ready to come home by the time we arrived, so I was able to finish the afternoon outing walking with my two favourite two-leggers. It would’ve been even better if we could’ve walked through some fluffy white stuff, but I’m trying not to complain, BOL!

Look who we found on the way home! I waited with Kay while Elizabeth took our picture along the Little Gravel Path.

Look who we found on the way home! I waited with Kay while Elizabeth took our picture along the Little Gravel Path.

 

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Busy? Not Me. Not Really…

Everyone around me seems to be busy these days.

Busy in the kitchen making food, “That’s not for you, Stella! That’s people food!”

Busy in the shop tidying and putting books on the website and shifting boxes and…

“Beep, beep, Stella!”

“Back up, Stella!”

“Woops, you’re in the way Stella!”

“Why don’t you go find Benny and play with him, Stella?”

Busy in the evenings in the basement, “You stay upstairs, Stella!”

Busy at their desks, “I’m doing my homework, Stella. You lie down, now.” or “I’m working on my income tax, Stella. Off you go, now. Maybe play with Justin?”

Elizabeth is up to something strange in her room. She’s making things out of string. She uses long pointy sticks. I’ve watched her. She just keeps turning the work round and round and it slowly forms human fur that hangs further and further from the sticks. It’s boring to watch. But there’s nothing else to do….

Both Kay and Elizabeth take me for walks and rides every day. That’s nice. There aren’t any animals coming round to speak of; the snow’s too deep for them to run fast, so they’re keeping away from me. Just as well. I’m feeling a lot better, but I’m not as full of energy as usual. I get tired fast moving through the snow, too. It’s up to my chin when I get off a path!

But on Monday, something interesting happened. Kay took me for a ride down the big gravel path to the box where the two-leggers find paper with strange markings on it. This paper is folded up and stuffed into another paper that’s made to hold it.

Wolves howl to communicate with one another across the miles. Two-leggers send these papers to one another. They call it mail.

Sometimes books come in the mail for Elizabeth, and they’re too big for the box down the big gravel path, so we go to a building in town very near Doyle the Dog Food Man’s store, so there are always lots of dogs out for walks in the area. I like trips to the mail building….

Monday was one of those days when Kay had to go in for bigger mail. She went into the mail building, then she came out with a big box. I wondered at her carrying it because, really, if it was full of books it would’ve been too heavy for her.

She put it in the back of the car and I got a chance to sniff it. Whoa-ho-ho! Did it smell interesting. Definitely not books! I stuck really close to Kay on the way into the house. I was sure something would jump out of that box. Definitely animal!

The box was for Elizabeth. She saw Kay carrying it and went out to get it from her. When she got it inside, she put it on the floor and went for a knife to open it up. By the time she found one, I’d pushed the box across the floor sniffing it. I thought maybe we’d be wiser opening it outside….

Elizabeth cut open the top of the box. Nothing jumped out!

What is that in there?

What is that in there?

She pulled a bag out of the box and set it on the floor. I sniffed it carefully and examined it very closely.

SHEEP'S WOOL???

SHEEP’S WOOL???

You're putting me on. Why would you want sheep's wool when you've got ... ME?

You’re putting me on!

What on earth does she want a bunch of sheep’s wool for when she’s got . . . ME?

Tail Thumper of the Week #14

Well, we did a bit more than just shovel and build model mountain ranges while we were snowed in. Elizabeth had the foresight to bring home a dog book to read to me. So, we curled up on the bed in her room on Sunday afternoon while the snow whirled and churned around the house outside, and we read stories about dogs who’d found new homes and happy lives. Can you think of a better way to spend a cold and blustery afternoon?

Elizabeth picked a good book, too. Elise Lufkin wrote Found Dogs: Tales of Strays Who Landed on Their Feet. Photographer Diana Walker helped to make it more interesting by taking beautiful black and white pictures of each dog to show readers that the words were true: these are very happy dogs now, although not all of them are pictured on their feet. Some of them are sitting or lying down (witness, the front cover…). Minor point. The important parts are their stories, which their two-leggers tell.

Click on the pic to buy. My commission goes to help Kenora's homeless dogs through It's a Dog's Life.

Click on the pic to buy. My commission goes to help Kenora’s homeless dogs through It’s a Dog’s Life.

Sometimes we read a lot about the dog’s past, sometimes its more about how they came to know and love and be happy with their new two-leggers. Sometimes the stories are used to tell two-leggers how to look after and adjust their lifestyles to help a new and traumatized dog fit into their home. So, there is practical advice, including an entire chapter at the end on how to find a shelter dog that’s right for your home, as well as lots of wonderful, inspiring, heartwarming  content. And the pictures really capture the dogs’ personalities, too.

Some of the owners, Elizabeth says, are famous two-leggers. I wouldn’t know about that. Most of them seem just like the people I meet at the vets’ or in the bookshop, or on the sidewalks in between the vets’ and the bookshop. I think they’re just like the two-leggers I see out walking with their dog-friends as I ride by in the growly beast with the window down so I can watch them and say, “Hello!” as we pass. I love rides….

I was really excited by one story about a truck driver (these ‘trucks’ are really big growly beasts like the ones that stop in the lane behind the bookshop while their two-leggers take big boxes out of them). His dog, Bear, is featured on the back cover of the book, too. As Elizabeth read his story, he told us about his dogs: Bear, a Newfoundland like my grandparent; Carbon, a Lab/collie mix; Cheyenne, a German shepherd/Australian shepherd mix; and finally (he had a lot of dogs!), Runt, a GREAT NEWFENEES LIKE ME!! At last, a book with a Great Newfenees character! Runt is in one of the pictures, too!  ~:o)=

This book is mostly about mixed breed characters of all ages, although some of the dogs are purebred. Even purebred dogs end up without homes sometimes.

If you’ve been wondering if you should adopt a dog or go to a breeder, then maybe this would be a good book to read. All these two-leggers seem to have had some challenges helping their new dog-friends, but everyone of them says that their adopted dog-friend is the best thing that ever happened to them. Sometimes, it seems that, although the two-legger thought s/he was rescuing a dog, events conspire to prove that, in actuality, the dog came into their lives at the perfect time to rescue them! The irony makes my tail thump!

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