Sunday, July 29, 2012

Return To Kanawha State Forest

Are we there yet?
This morning, we returned to Kanawha State Forest.  Originally, I'd hoped to explore the new Wallace Hartman Nature Preserve, but I couldn't see any really well-defined trails, and I decided to save that for another day, after I've had a chance to explore by myself, without having to worry about Brea, as well.

We started up the Overlook Rock Trail, but it was very muddy, and I didn't bring water along and wasn't wearing my hiking boots, so we turned back at the place where some trees came down a few weeks ago.  Everywhere we went, you could see fallen trees or the remains of fallen trees.

Don't leave without me!

Starting to like this place.
Brea was a lot more relaxed this time, more interested in sniffing around and exploring.  She had only one scary moment, again acting afraid of a trash can next to one of the picnic shelters.  I wish I knew what the deal was with those things.  At any rate, overall, we had a good time at the forest.

New Bling

Not surprisingly, this website has been inundated with requests for more news and more pictures of Brea.  Well, at least two people have asked if I'm going to post anything new any time soon.  So here it is.

And, no surprise, Brea is on the cutting edge of fashion.  She has a new collar from L.L. Bean with her name and phone number embroidered on it, and a tag from Road ID with her name and phone number, microchip number, and my email address laser-engraved on it.  Best of all, it's not one of those dangly dog tags that can get snagged on things.

Road ID also makes ID tags for runners and cyclists, including ankle and wrist bands and neck chain dog tags.  I got the dog tag type, to wear when I'm walking the dog when I don't carry my wallet or other identification - it has my emergency contact numbers and insurance information. I've also seen them on people with Alzheimers, put there by family members, in case their loved one wanders off.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Brea Is Back

Brea spent the week relaxing at the boarding kennel at Animal Care Associates, rather than put up with one hundred plus degree temperatures in St. Louis.  Too hot and too many people!

She jumped up on me by way of greeting when they brought her out from the kennel, and climbed over the seat to sit next to me on the ride home.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Before Brea: Lucky

Little Baby Lucky
Lucky followed us home one day.  We were passing an old storage shed on Harvey's Creek and heard a little dog barking at us.  We stopped, and a little brown puppy came out from under the shed and started sniffing with Lady and Lucy.

She followed us home and waited outside on the porch.  After it got dark, she started crying and whining and scratching on the screen door. Eventually, she wore a hole in the screen.

Originally, our plan was to take her to the animal shelter on the weekend, if we hadn't found a home for her by then, because we didn't think we needed or wanted another dog.  That was a few days away.  By the weekend, though, we thought that maybe we did have room for one more dog. Good luck for her, so we named her Lucky.

Carol used to say that Lucy was her dog, Lady was mine, and Lucky was Lady's, and that certainly seemed to be the case.  Lucky followed Lady everywhere. Lucky was kind of standoffish with people. She was with us for five years before she would sit with her back to me and let me pet her, and even then she would sometimes growl when I petted her.  It was a couple more years after that before the first time she rolled on her back and let me rub her belly.

She didn't like smokers, and twice lunged without warning at people who had a strong smell of cigarette smoke about them, and I caught her just in time.  One was a plumber who was doing some work at the house, and the other was a coworker, a very nice lady who needed to share a ride to work.  All of us were pretty shaken by the experience.

Lucky was with us for sixteen years.  She mellowed out in her old age, but she always took her guard dog duties seriously.  Nobody lit a cigarette in this house while Lucky was around.

Brea is back from her vacation.  More about that later.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Before Brea: Lady

We got Lady to keep Lucy company, although we realized later that Lucy probably couldn't care less.  At any rate, I wanted a German Shepherd, and some people in Teays Valley were offering one, "free, to a good home."  They had found her a week or two before and now wanted her gone, because, they said, she wasn't housebroken, wouldn't stay off the furniture, and kept knocking their two year old down.

Lady was a very smart dog.  She was housebroken within a week, and soon limited herself to sleeping on one chair, which was okay with me.  She proved herself to be very gentle with small children.

She was my favorite dog.  Lady was with us for sixteen years, and I still miss her.

Brea is still on vacation.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Before Brea: Lucy

Little Baby Lucy

Lucy was with us for sixteen years.  She was the best dog.  Lucy didn't bark too much, she didn't jump on people (although you could tell that she wanted to), and she was very gentle, with wonderful manners.  She was also the only dog I've ever had who didn't mind posing for photographs.

Brea is on vacation.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Sunday, July 1, 2012

What happened to my road?

The morning after the big storm.

Saturday morning, following Friday evening's big storm - trees and power lines down in every direction.  We could go only about a third of the way down Pleasant Road before coming to the first of three fallen trees.  The road was cleared by Saturday afternoon.  At least nothing came down on my house or car.  There was (and still is) a lot of debris - mostly tree branches - to pick up in the yard.

The only damage I experienced was the loss of the shades on the back porch, and the food in the refrigerator and freezer.  We've been advised that the electricity may not be back on until Friday or Saturday.

Neighbor cat is not impressed.

During the storm, Brea appeared to be about as calm or anxious as she always is.  I didn't notice any change in her behavior - no pacing or whining or trembling - unlike my other dogs, all of whom were very afraid during storms.