Sunday, February 22, 2015

That Was Close

We had a scare tonight. Larry heard the dogs fighting and thought Otis and Buddy, our two black labs, were wrangling--Otis can be a grumpy old man--so he hollered at them. Otis came in through the back door with a bloody cut over his eye, Buddy didn't answer or come in.

Otis was trembling, and we thought poor Buddy might have tangled with a coyote and was out there hurt somewhere. Just as Larry started getting on boots, etc. I looked out on the front porch, and there was Buddy, looking at me like, "What?" I think it must have been an angry raccoon they tangled with, and Otis got the worst of it. Whew.
Where is that Buddy? Who knows, he was probably
hanging out with Larry when I snapped this
shot the other day.

It's one of our biggest fears, and one we can't really protect them from. Coyotes are close by, we know. We can hear them howling at night and often our dogs will howl right along with them, the most mournful sound you can imagine. We keep them in the back room at night, and not just because it's so cold. We worry about them getting mixed up with a coyote pack--and at the same time, we worry about the chickens left in their coop without the dogs out there to scare off any marauders. It's a Catch-22 situation for farm dogs and owners these days, isn't it?

Miss Daisy, the yellow lab, is usually inside anyway because she just up and decided that it's her right as the girl. But she worries after he boys and if she thinks there's something wrong she's at the door whining to go out. She even comes after me if the cats need out or in, if a door is open that shouldn't be, if the kettle is boiling...she's a smart girl.

So all is well, anyway. Otis has been babied and fussed over, Buddy got some special treats and Daisy has been busy licking them both.

Charlie's snoozing spot
The cats could care less; as long as they can have their favorite perches all is good in their world.

I think the coon won that round but I hope the dogs scared him enough that he'll keep some distance from the house. I'm not counting on it though.

Cats and dogs--what would we do without them?

Copyright Susanna Holstein. All rights reserved. No Republication or Redistribution Allowed without attribution to Susanna Holstein.


Quinn said...

Yep, it's always a problem, balancing predator control and critter safety. Glad your pups and cats are safe and sound now.

Jenny said...

We have coyotes too but I don't think they come near our house. We're in the country but at the end of a dead end road in a cluster of houses so they seem to prefer the farmland around us more thankfully. We do often hear them though.

I keep one dog outside at night to keep the deer & armadillos out of my garden.

storytellermary said...

Poor brave puppies. I chased a raccoon off my deck one evening, told him the frogs on my windows and screens were MY frogs and go get his own. Afterward I realized that I should perhaps have thought twice before going out, maybe at least have taken a broom.
I gave my CSA farmers a "driveway alarm" motion sensor Mel had suggested as a way of knowing when the deer were nearby. Now that so many houses have filled the empty lots, there would be too much other activity. Brad was delighted with the idea of putting it in the corn field, but I'll bet it could also help protect hens. I've seen people use motion-sensor lights to deter predators also. Good luck!

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