This is what happens every.single.day.
Nature and I are fighting a battle, and nature is winning. What was once a downy carpet of gentle grasses and baby wildflowers is now a jungle of aggressive, pokey, pants-ruining monster weeds that trounce my efforts to walk my dogs! Even when my dogs are right behind me, jostling with one another for space on the very narrow path we have managed to carve out on our thrice daily treks, I can’t see them. I am forever screaming at them to “GET BACK HERE RIGHT NOW” only to discover they are standing 3 feet away, mystified by my temper tantrum and gossiping amongst themselves about how I’ve finally gone and lost it.
How many dogs can you see in this photo? Hint: they are ALL there. Now you see my problem.
We can’t even walk along the dykes anymore. What was once a perfectly respectable pathway (and by once, I mean, 4 days ago)
Is now totally overgrown, leaving only a space that reminds me suspiciously of my ex’s ‘beer hole’ in his freezer, before he moved somewhere with a frost-free fridge.
I have found the perfect escape hatch.
There’s only one solution.
We’ll have to eat our way out of the grasslands.
This is hard work, but someone’s got to do it.
“Don’t eat my underpants. Don’t eat the cat food. Don’t eat the dead snake.” Oh sure, but now she’s all “Eat this grass!” Stupid bossy Food Lady.
Like good little foot soldiers, they did their best, but even the voracious appetite of dogs is no match for the jungle.
TWooie, of course, did not participate in the Group Chow Down.
Yeah, umm, no, I don’t think so.
Even when Piper tried to force him, he remained firm.
He was too busy watching the sky for more avian offerings from the Aussie Appetite Gods.
Unbelievably, two days after the Infamous Bird Eating Blog, we were out for our evening stroll and TWooie came whipping around the corner of the barn with *another* baby robin in his jaws. Even I was amazed at his good fortune. Until I learned his terrible secret … it was the same fledgling. It turns out TWooie will scarf down baby bunnies like they’re going out of style, but baby birds are a delicacy that must be saved, like expensive wine. So he did not, in fact, eat little robin lice breast that fateful day … he simply stashed it in some tall bushes, where he found it again two days later. I know this because I watched him store it carefully in another copse of wild grasses in the horse pasture, then beat the stuffing out of Dexter for trying to go have a poop in said pasture. Nor would he allow Tweed to go find his tennis ball.
That’s very wasteful, TWooie.
What a rebel.
So here’s Piper’s attempt at the same Standard 2 course as the one of Tweed I posted a couple of days ago. You will please notice the much more nicely executed front cross at the start, as well as the more stylish closing sequence off the dog walk, since Piper has a nice 2o/2o (as compared to Tweed’s always sketchy quick release contact, which is for the sake of his front feet). You’ll also notice that her weaves fall apart in trials for some reason, so we’re going back to the 2X2s to build on them again. If I could have trusted her to stay in her weaves, I would have been ahead of her enough that she would not have gotten a refusal at the jump. Oh well!
Incidentally, you guys watched so much of Tweed’s video that Yutube emailed me and asked if I wanted to be part of their revenue sharing program, where they put ads on the video. Ya’ll viewed it 698 times in 2 days! Wow.
Great Job Piper!!!! Love seeing your dogs in action.
698 times in two days? That’s awesome!
Since nature seems to be winning the botanical war, you’ll have to find a way to adapt (no, I don’t mean go ruminant). Train the dogs to come to a referee whistle or Acme English whistle like this http://www.gundogsonline.com/dog-whistle/acme-210-dog-whistle.html . We use them to do a head count on the dogs when we go out as a pack. Once the training is done, just use it a few times per outing to reinforce it and save your lungs and swearing for more interesting times.
I have a goat- I mean dog – I can loan you for grass eating duties. He would probably really like your jungle.
Heather and Ellie says
That’s a big project….good thing you have so many dogs! Maybe by the time winter comes they will have mowed it all down :)
TWooie has a twisted mind…..perhaps he’s waiting for it to grow bigger so he can have MORE robin to eat. But he’s so frickin’ adorable you can’t hold it against him!
congrats on the Youtube invite! Hope it makes you some $$!
Good job on the runs!
Really nice run!
You need to borrow a ride-on mower to cut yourself a path through all the undergrowth. Then at least you can walk without getting lost. It is nice, though, to see all that lushness and all those dirty wet happy dogs.
Another nice run. You gave Piper more help with the serpentine at the end but Tweed managed it with just a TWEEEEEED! I want to retrain Gracie on 2X2s, too – she is rock solid on her weaves once in them but only about 90% on her entrances.
Ailsa made my suggestion for me – you need a ride-on mower, w/ or w/o a driver if you can operate one yourself. I guess you don’t have fox tails up there or you would really be pulling your hair out – as well as pulling fox tails out of your dogs.
I thought Woo had the world’s most expressive face but now Twooie is laying claim to that title. Great pictures, as always.
I hope you took them up on it!
That’s not a bad run for a baby girl! I can empathize with “weaves at trials”. My theory goes that they take more concentration and so when the pups have more distractions they can’t concentrate on the weaving.
On the grass, maybe you need a cow…
I can’t believe Twooie has saved that little birdie! Maybe he isn’t an evil baby bird eater after all. Maybe he just wanted to save and nurture the little birdie. I also can’t believe the little bird has survived for two days, in the grass, with no food and all on its own! That’s crazy!
The Food Lady says
“I also can’t believe the little bird has survived for two days, in the grass, with no food and all on its own! That’s crazy!”
I know! It’s dead now though. Yuck.
Congrats on the YouTube….hope it works out for you….you and your gang definitely deserve it for entertaining us so well.
Have you tried hiking bells?
If a riding mower isn’t a option, you can get a gas powered weed wacker thing. Leave the dogs inside probably when you buzz some trails ’cause, you know, spinning chopper thingy. Its a little better able to take different terrain than a riding mower, I should think.
You could train everyone to bark on command, like dachshunds in a badger hole.
Get someone with a tractor and mower to make it into silage – that’ll solve your problem. As for the brid, RIP.
Piper did very well for being more pretty than smart!
Just east of Portland is an awesome off leash area called Thousand Acres (it is actually about 1400 acres). It is at the Sandy River delta where it enters the Columbia. Early summer the grass is just like that in your jungle. The redeeming factor is that lots of people use it, so the main tracks stay clear and the offshoots are slightly better than your jungle. But I can appreciate the 5-6 foot tall grass swallowing EVERYTHING.
I would think that weed whacking your trails would take weeks…
No bells. If you have coyotes in the area it will just attract them. I was putting bear bells on my dogs but the coyotes were just coming too close to check us out. I removed the bells – no more coyotes sneaking up on us!
The Food Lady says
hahahaha! I don’t *really* lose them. They know where home is, and it’s pretty much all on our own property anyway. It’s just hard to get around!
Thanks, Sheena, for putting up the agility videos. It really is a help to the clueless, like me.
Piper is such a wee thing, isn’t she? I never really appreciated it until I saw her with something in the picture for scale. Not so wee as Julie Poudrier’s Lark (who looks as though she should have a hatch for batteries), but wee nonetheless. She’s quite a talented girl, though, and I loved watching her and Tweed’s runs.
Just let me know if I can help TWoo study for his law school exams. ;-)
You can bet if it was garden that you had carefully nutured and wanted to keep it, the dogs would destroy it all in 10 minutes flat. :-)