Good afternoon everybody. Hope this finds all of you doing well. I’m dropping off a short post strictly for entertainment purposes.
Most of you know him by now. He is the one you see whenever you see one of my posts on these blogs that have gravitar tied to them. Affectionately known as The Hound (his name is Mel), and around some blogs and in some forums, he is pretty well known. He has a lot of interests, mostly sleeping but he also enjoys patrolling his back yard. I say his back yard because typically, he’s the only one who uses it for anything. On nice days, if he’s outside for any length of time, he can be found snoozing under the Lilac bush (tree) on the side of the house. If it’s too hot I prefer not to leave him outside and if it’s too cold, he won’t go outside except to take care of business. Whatever works for him.When I’m outside with him, rain, snow, or shine, I know when he’s done because he stops at his scratching post for a 10 minute self administered back scratch.
Online, I tend to give him a human persona. We hear one of these housewives caterwauling for example, I might say something like he’s told me to grow eyes in the back of my head for subjecting him to that. Obviously he doesn’t really say anything other than to get up and leave the room which, I guess, is him giving his critique of what he’s hearing. He is also my sounding board. If there’s something I want to say that I don’t want thrown back at me, I tell him. If he ever learns to speak, I’m in big trouble with a lot of people but I figure that’s never going to happen. Mostly he just gives me a look that says, ‘why are you talking to me about anything but food, who the hell is this person you’re talking about, and do they have treats?’. He also loves to ride in the car. For about a half hour anyway. After that, he’s pretty bored with the idea and wants to go home and make sure his food dish is still where he left it.
I’ve had him a little over 11 years. I picked him up at a local animal shelter after having to put his predecessor down. Rather, allowing the city to do it due to some unfortunate circumstances. When I went to the shelter, on each of the cages was a number. That was the number of days before the animal’s ticket would be punched or at the very minimum, they would have to reconsider whether the animal was adoptable or not. Mel’s number was 4. All of the animals had numbers so I really couldn’t tell you why I chose him except to to say that he somehow spoke to me. ‘Dude, Get me the hell out of this place.’. The price tag was zero dollars except I had to pay $100 to have him fixed and updated on his shots. Small price to pay IMO.
Typically at night, before turning in, I’ll let or take him out one last time for the day. This could be at 10pm or 4am depending on what I’m doing on any given day. There is no set schedule. One of his favorite things to do is chase the wildlife out of his yard. Here he is with his nose pushed into a rabbit’s nest (not yet populated) last year.
The rabbits must have gotten the hint because last year, there were no babies born in his yard. This year however, two populated nests have been destroyed and emptied. One would think that with all of the signals laying around the back yard at times, these rabbits would get the hint and build their nests somewhere else. Usually, when he encounters the rabbits, they are likely passing through at night but as soon as he spots them, the chase is on. In his prime, with enough room, he probably could have caught them. They know how they got into the yard and as soon as the chase begins, they head for the gap under the gate. One night, as I was stepping out to call him in, one of these rabbits hit me in the leg fleeing from The Hound. He was stunned for a second, got up, and made his exit from the yard. Birds are another choice for the chase. I’ve seen him snatch one out of the air. What had happened is one of the chicks had fallen from the nest learning to fly and was on foot, in The Hound’s yard. The bird clan was dive bombing him while he was trying to do his morning constitutional. I guess he got tired of it and showed them what was going to happen to the next one. They stayed on the wires high above after that. I chased the chick through a hole in the fence to end the threat to it’s life. Add squirrels to the list too. They usually sit on the line posts taunting him. He’s never caught one though.
Last night, before getting ready for bed at 2am, I let him out for the last time of the day/night. He wasn’t outside for very long when I stared hearing things coming from the back yard and I figured he was about to come running around the corner tail grabbing some rabbit’s ass. He came running around the corner alright. There was no rabbit though. He was rubbing his face, coughing and sneezing. Following him was the smell and following that, Pepe Le Pue. That’s right, The Hound had his very first (and hopefully last) encounter with a polecat. The Hound and I yielded to Pepe as he made his exit under the drive gate, likely the same way he came into the yard. I tried to come back into the house to get something to try and clean him off but before I knew it, he beat me through the door, had rubbed himself all over my carpet and within minutes, the smell had infiltrated my AC system. I pulled the rug out of the bathroom, locked him inside of it, and 45 minutes later, at 3am after a visit to the 24 hour grocery store, I’m rubbing tomato juice all over my dog. 20 minutes later, I’m shampooing my carpet, can’t get this smell out of my nose and mouth, and he’s giving me this look of ‘What did I do? Got a cookie?’… Really? He didn’t get a full shot but it was enough to completely ruin what otherwise had been a good, eventless, night. Oh well, such is part of the joy of having a pet.
Another Hound fun fact.. In some photography forums, he’s known as Hound In Flight. Here is the photo that earned him that name.
He is running from one side of the house to the other hoping to catch whatever or whoever is walking down the street.
Have a great rest of the week everyone. See you Saturday for the Saturday Special.
A heartfelt set of high fives, paws and hooves. Mel’s escapades – and those of his devoted human – remind all of us who cherish our relationships with our four legged friends why we wouldn’t miss one minute of our time with them for all the money in the world. We humans are so grateful to have the opportunity and good fortune of knowing them. May we all strive to be the people they think we are. Thanks for sharing Mel’s life (and yours) with all of us. You’re right, btw – it’s a good thing they can’t talk or write. A whole bunch of us would be in big trouble. 😀
We haven’t had the dog versus skunk experience – a lot of other wildlife encounters, though – just glad to hear that you, Mel and the house survived the ordeal.
You and MTH had quite an exciting evening last night! Hope the house is back to normal and Mel has learned to stir clear of black and white striped kitties that don’t run very fast. Mine did and now she just sits on the porch and barks until the skunk decides to leave…
Enjoyed your post. Tx