Like a walk through the country side living on a small farm is full of daily surprises, sometimes wonderful and amazing, and other times puzzling and sad. I hope you will walk with me as I live out my dream of living on this tiny farm. You will come to know the dogs, cats, Shetland sheep and chickens that make up this farm and what goes into keeping them happy and healthy. Come and join the journey with me.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Stranger On The Farm

The Stranger

Friday was a stressful day at work and to top it off I had to go by the dreaded Mart store afterward with extensive list in hand.  However the weather was unseasonably warm and lovely so at dusk it was finally time to settle in for a nice sit out on the deck.

Chatting on the phone to Mom, I grabbed what was left of my soda and stepped out into the lovely warm, quiet evening air.  Just what I needed.

All of ten minutes of the soothing sounds of night settling around.  Then my dogs started in.  I scolded them.  I threatened them, and finally reeled them in and put up the ex pen so they had to stay on the deck with me, instead of charging around the yard screaming at the top of their collie lungs.

They didn't want to settle, and grumbled about it, and milled around.  So much for decompressing.  As I sat there, it began to register in my tired brain that there was a white spot down across the field that shouldn't be there.  I stared at it, trying to figure out what it was.   Deer often cross the road and into the field in this particular area, so perhaps it was a deer with it's tail turned to me?   But no, it was too short for that, and then it moved.  Not much but a little.  The more I stared the more it started looking like a Corgi sitting there staring at me.  Or maybe even Heidi my Dad and Mom's dog.  Still on the phone with Mom I squeaked out..there is a dog in the field!  Horrible words.   Then I asked her if Heidi was in their yard (yes she was, and no she doesn't really look like a Corgi except her coloring and facial markings might look similar a half acre away at dusk).
What the heck is this suppose to be the girls ask

So I slipped in and got my trusty binoculars.  Sure enough---a Corgi was just sitting there watching the 'party' on the deck.    I have neighbors, but none that close and I've not seen a Corgi around here.  However my new weekend neighbors across the street from me were down for the night.  It did seem a bit coincidental, although I hadn't seen them with any pets.  

Being the concerned idiot that I tend to be about animals, after stashing the collie girls into the hallway, I slipped out and walked over to the fence line and called the dog.  I didn't think it would come, but it didn't take long and I could hear the jingle of the collar as it ran.  The thought went through my mind that this would be an easy solve since it had a collar on and what sounded like tags jingling. 

Minty inspecting from a distance

The dog ran right up to the fence, wiggling and twisting--happy to see a friendly face at last.  He (yes he had to 'mark' the fence) looked to be a well kept and well groomed little fellow, and definitely a Pembroke Corgi.  He had on a nice camo collar but no tags.  Grrr

I couldn't get him through the fence, so walked down and he eventually worked himself around to the other side of the pasture and slipped through the cattle panel squares.  Then I snapped the leash on him and checked just to make sure there were no tags.  It was dark by then.   Hadn't a clue what to do with him now that I had him, but eventually tied him to the fence, and broke out one of the girls crates.  I stashed him in that, took his collar off to check for numbers written inside, then went in and called my new part-time neighbors to make sure he wasn't theirs.  I mean it probably wouldn't look very good if I snatched their dog the fourth night they were out here!

No, it wasn't theirs, they don't have any pets at the moment, but they did wonder what all the 'neighborhood dogs' (Uhmm...that would be my dogs...) were riled up about. Well, that was a downer, didn't look like an easy fix after all.

In the end, the other crate was set up in the hallway, food and water dishes with contents put in it, and a soft blanket and a sheet over it, to make it seem safe.  Then I put the collies in the house, put his collar back on, leashed him up and walked around a bit so he could 'do his business'.  Then I settled him in the crate for the night and very quietly went about my business in the house so that he wouldn't get to barking.  I only heard a few peeps out of him the whole night.  What a good boy he was --no crate soiling either.

He sure was a cute fellow, very cheerful, but obviously worried.  (I don't know why a little dog like me is out on my own!!)  I did the usual--called likely neighbors, listed him on craigslist and finally went to bed.

Carly's new friend
Strangely enough, years ago I had another Corgi show up in my sheep pasture one night!   I easily found his home, as he belonged to my neighbors just down the road.  At the time they raised a few Corgis, but they had been gone for months, only occasionally coming back to check their place.  They had been here that week though, so I called a friend who had their contact info, and ended up calling them...just in case.   (Eventually they called back and he wasn't theirs).

Up early Saturday to let the girls out, and walk the 'new guy'.  Because he was obviously in very good health and he seemed outgoing, I let him sniff noses with the girls through the fence.  Later I would let them the girls out and they would all introduce themselves.   Carly was especially taken with him, and thought he might be her own special furry toy.  He was quite feisty though and managed to hold his own.   I waited around for awhile to see if anyone would call or contact me from the craigslist ad.  No one did, so I called the vet and asked if I could 'bring in a little dog I'd found to see if he had a chip'.   They said sure.  Loading him up was easy---as I bent over to boost him into the truck seat he took his stobby little legs and hurled himself right on up!   A truck ride!  Oh boy, oh boy!!  

During the ride out to town, he was very good and kept cuddling up next to me, and giving me the 'I like you, but I really just want to go home now'  look.  I tried to explain it all to him--how I'd do my best to find his people, but once in awhile that didn't work out, but whatever happened he'd have a good home with someone.

I've went to this vet for years, and they know I occasionally drag in something like this.  When I pulled up and got out to let him do his business, another car pulled up and a man got out.  He hollered, hey I have a dog just like that!  I asked him if his was missing.  He looked confused, and said, no his was a girl, and a little bigger, but looked allot like this dog.  I told him I had brought it in to see if was chipped because it had just shown up at my house.  He was like, you are kidding me, right?   He offered to take the dog if I couldn't find the owner, and I said, give me your number just in case, but I would first be attempting to find the owner of this well cared for little guy. 

Can I Go Home Now???  
In the vet's office we went--me, the dog and the dogs new friend.  The gal I spoke to on the phone asked if she could help me and I explained who I was (she is relatively new there).  The reception area is L shaped with exam rooms on either end and the desk in between.  The desk has a very tall counter so those sitting behind can't see the short furry people that come in.   The other receptionist was busy with another client and we exchanged greetings and she continued to concentrate on helping the person ahead of me.  (This gal and I went to school together all those many moons ago...)

The young chickie whose name I do not know, went around through the exam room to get the scanner.  I started over to meet her, and about halfway across the room, she says---where did you find this dog,???  I told her, and she looked odd, but then went about trying to scan him.  The dog was being a wiggle wart, so I bent over to help her.  About that time,  the disjointed pieces of conversation...little dog, found, corgi...must have registered with the other receptionist.  Suddenly she comes flying around the counter, slams through the swinging door and goes down on her knees--"MOOSE!  Moose it IS you!   I can't believe this!  Where have you been (directed at Moose), where did you find him (directed at me)???  You are something else" (directed at me.)  (I'm guessing because I'm always dragging something in??)  I was totally confused--I asked her in disbelief--is he YOUR dog???    No he wasn't, but he belonged to her son!  

This gal lives just over the river from me, but her son lives several miles beyond that--probably at least five miles with a river and two creeks in between.  Moose it seems had been gone four going on five days.   He normally is a house dog and the buddy to her grandson, but it seems they put him on a tie out sometimes when they go off to run errands.  When they got back this last time, there was no Moose.  The tie out wasn't busted, just looked like someone had unsnapped him.  They feared he  had been stolen.  (And he may have been---he sure didn't look like he had been roaming for almost five days and over five miles!).

Well.  That was an easy solve, but what are the odds?    That little feller got lucky, and I hope they a) put i.d. on him (or chip or both) and b. take precautions about tying him out again, in case someone did steal him.   I have a feeling they will keep a close eye on him!  

We've long suspected there is a family down the road that are either 'bunchers' or just like to collect nice looking dogs, as they have forever turned up with new dogs over the years--with a constant turnaround.  No way to prove it, but we wonder if this little fellow ended up in their hands and then somehow got out and took off.  I'm sure we'll never know.

I could have given this dog away three times......

Much like little Jake the Jack Russell, you have to wonder what their story is.  With Jake I've never been able to find out and that haunts me a little even though I know he went to a wonderful new home.  

Friday night my prayers were for a quick resolving of the situation and I am happy that Moose was reunited with his people.   I'm also happy I could help him out.  Mostly I'm happy I don't have another dog! 

 So many cats and kittens have turned up here over the years, and most I've been able to help in some way--if not me, then my Mom.  Dogs have been fewer (thankfully) but I've also seen my share of them.  Most of them I placed in new homes---Blue the cattle dog that looked like he fell off a truck;  Brownie--a little starving hound mix that I had to snare to catch;  Windy the beautiful Pyrenees pup that the collies looked on with horror at her rowdy ways; an obnoxious (but beautiful) white Shitzu looking mix;  A male Corgi who sat and barked in the middle of my sheep pasture one dark night; and of course Boone, the French Mastiff who came to stay; the stiff old Shiba Inu male who wanted help, but didn't want to be touched; Jake the Jack, and Moose the Corgi.   Forgive me little ones if I've forgotten any of you--your lives have mattered to me. 

Now...I need to go check my gateposts and see if there is a special mark on them, encouraging wayward animals to stop in!


Tombstone Livestock said...

Moose is so cute, glad you were able to find his owner.

Joanna@BooneDocksWilcox said...

You did good for Moose. :-)

Phyllis Oller said...

I`m so glad you were able to find the owner that quickly,poor little guy,what a long way to go,I`m sure he gave you much kisses for finding his way home! I hope that they get him chipped.phyllis

Tina T-P said...

How lucky little Moose was to find you - yes, there must be a mark on your fence posts that says "A kind- hearted woman lives here" :-) T.

Stephen Andrew said...

What a magical story. Thanks so much for sharing it. I'm so happy he stumbled upon you. I believe animals know how to find people to help them.

Vicki Lane said...

Blessings on you, Tammy, for being a friend and angel for these lost ones. So glad the story had a happy ending!

Vicki Lane said...

Blessings on you, Tammy, for being a friend and angel for these lost ones. So glad the story had a happy ending!

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Kathy said...

May you be blessed for all that you do, Tammy.
I believe they find their way to your door as they know someone who cares about other creatures lives there.
May your returning karma be nothing but good to you.
Hugs, Kathy

Jo's World said...

I came to say hello after reading you won the Porties award. Then I moseyed down and read this wonderful story you wrote about the Corgi being lost. I hope if my dog ever gets lost someone just like you finds her! You are a very kind person. Blessing from
Jo, Stella and Zkhat

Piappies World said...

Hello there Tammy! We found out about you through our pals from the Portuguese Water Blog. Congratulations for winning their pawesome prize.

We do hope we can also be pals here in the blog world.

So nice of you to keep Moose company and happy that he found his owner.

Piappies Fudgie, Princess, Frappie, Mocha, Sugar, Wai-Max, Wai-Pai & Forgie