Thursday, March 2, 2017

Nesting Season

Last night Stewie, my Chihuahua/Min Pin mix, crawled out from under the covers and growled repeatedly.  I had no idea what he was reacting to, but I wasn't hearing anything.  I shushed him and told him to go back to sleep.  He ignored me and kept growling.  Then we heard a slight noise and he barked, which triggered the other two dogs to wake up and bark.  This cycle happened three times throughout the night.

When the heater turned on, I wondered if someone was breaking in and had opened a window.  It didn't seem cold enough inside to trigger the heat.  So, I got up and walked around the house turning on lights and checking windows.  Everything was closed up tight.  I also turned on the outdoor lights and looked outside.  Nothing.  I went back to sleep and forgot all about it.

The next morning I went out onto the porch to retrieve the pair of muddy shoes I had left out there to dry the evening before, and found that a rat had tried to chew holes into the toes of each shoe.  It managed to pull the rubber sole away from the toes, so now dirt and sand can get into my shoes.  I'm sure it's the same rat who shredded our lounge cushion.

It's nesting season.  I'm seeing ground squirrels grabbing hay off the ground and carrying it down into their holes.  Right now, I only have to slow down to avoid hitting quail couples crossing the street, but I know that in a few weeks I'll have to come to a complete stop while whole quail families cross.  The quail are nesting in my haystack.  I haven't found any eggs yet, but I'm sure they are either on the way or just hidden from view.

Warmer weather also triggers shedding.  I brushed each horse's body and mane, and each horse thoroughly appreciated it.  They acted like they were in heaven.  Poor Lostine.  Her arthritis in her neck is so bad that she hangs her head down to my hip level, but it makes it a lot easier to comb out her mane and forelock.  Their tails will have to wait for another day.  Too much work.  Their manes already gave my arms enough of a workout.

I looked up one of my old horse trainers from Nevada to see how she did this year at the Scottsdale Arabian Horse Show.  She relocated to Scottsdale a few years ago.  I thought it was funny that she and I were from the same small town in a different state, and we moved to the same general location.  I saw that she remarried and had a new training facility up in hills above Fort McDowell.  Her description of the property on her Facebook page sounded like a place I looked at when I was house hunting five years ago, so I checked it out from satellite view, and the ranch I considered buying turned out to be right next door to her new training facility!  What are the chances?  She was instrumental in getting my young, green Bombay to settle down.  Now he's an old man.  How time flies.


Mrs Shoes said...

Manic MinPin also sleep under the covers - on Mr Shoes' side of the bed - in the wintertime. Summertime I insist she sleep in her own dang bed.
Here it's families of Canada Geese who stop traffic - seems fitting.

TeresaA said...

MY horses are shedding too! Carmen is loving the extra scratches- which is great because she used to be too tense to enjoy being groomed.

Linda said...

Weird. Apparently you two think alike. This year has been so cold, I've started to think about moving this whole operation south, but I imagine your summers are tough. Still, I'm very jealous right now. (Except the rats, yuck!!)