So You Think You’re A Big Chicken Now?

Yesterday we were at a USDAA trial that was held up here in Canada and someone mentioned that Fae always looks much larger in photos than she does in person, because there’s often nothing (such as a banana) for scale in photos.  So here’s Fae next to a chicken; if you know anything about chickens, then now you know how small Fae really is.

Though she be but tiny, she also be a Great Big Beeyotch.  Pound for pound, she’s a hard ass.  She’ll take on a rooster, if she thinks the rooster needs to learn a lesson.  Not that the rooster ever learns his lessons; so far he has successfully beaten up me, Auntie Michelle, and my landlord.  He really is not a very nice bird at all!

But he has not beaten up Terrence, my Personal Body Guard Turkey.  Terrence will beat up the rooster if the rooster tries to beat me up and Terrence is close enough to get involved.  I really, really like my turkey a lot.

He (with the help of his lady turkeys) made me seven baby turkeys who are right now in the a brooder on top of the washing machine.  Although one has gibbled feet, so I’m not sure he/she is going to make it … but dang, are they ever the cutest!!  I tried to get some photos, but shooting from above next to a red heat lamp just makes for lame photos.  I’m going to try and shoot them under studio lights in the next week while they are still itty bitty.  And cute.  Did I mention they were cute?  They’re almost as cute as HARVEY MY GOAT.

LOOK AT HIS ADORABLE FACE!!!

I love him so much!!  Michelle and I took turns bottle feeding him today.

He’s a big fan of feeding time!

Michelle’s mom is going to make him some fancy collars.  And I’m going to give him a bath because I think he needs to smell better, and not leave dirt on my hands after I pet him.  And I pet him a lot … after milk time, he climbed into my lap like a little dog and fell asleep having a cuddle.  I’m all a-swooning for my goaty baby!

This newborn goat was also cute:

And very tiny, like the size of Fae (see chicken above for scale).  But she is not Harvey, so she is not as cute.

Harvey isn’t allowed to come home until he drinks water from a bucket, which he is so far refusing to do.  Also he needs to be banded so his, umm, manly bits don’t come with him.  My landlord offered to grab the band and let me do it, but I don’t want Harvey to have to go into therapy because his mommy made his nuts fall off.

This is the cow that sometimes comes into my yard.  Frankly, she scares the shit out of me.  She’s just too damn big.  And she looks pissed off all the time.

We had a really nice, chill day just hanging around the farm with the dogs.  Addy did some gardening.

While Wootie did perimeter patrol for potential threats (and judging from the look of him, may have snuck out back to smoke a joint).

And TWooie took first watch.  And he took it seriously.

If the yard was fully secured in terms of fence, I think the WooTWoo would like nothing better than to spend their days out there just keeping an eye on things.  They are great little farm dogs, for their size, and they love just hanging out and surveying their property.  But the yard is not quite securely fenced, as evidenced by this pointy little face staring at me from the WRONG side of the driveway gate:

So clearly, beefing up the fencing needs to move up the priority “to do” list.  I also really need some ideas for making the front fence some kind of privacy fence, because it’s hard to enjoy the yard with the dogs when they ALL make a beeline for the fence line, barking their fool heads off, every time someone walks by.  We are quite near a popular (on leash) park with horse trails, so there are a fair number of people walking or riding by on nice days.  I was thinking of buying planks a couple at a time, whenever I have an extra couple of bucks to throw at it, until I have amassed enough of them to build horizontal slats from post to post with a very minimal gap in them, so people can’t see the dogs and the dogs can’t see people.  I just don’t want them pissing anyone off, because I have a lot of dogs, and all of them are loud.  Any other suggestions?  I probably have a couple hundred feet to do, so it will take me a long while to buy enough planks.

Dexter does not rush the fence.  Especially when he’s getting Auntie Michelle cuddles.

He likes those so much his feet don’t even touch the ground!

Except when he’s doing his impression of an ottoman.

Piper remains … slightly senile

Peetie remains annoying.

And Winter is sitting at the foot of the washing machine, staring at the brooder and wishing baby turkeys would fall into his mouth.

Happy Easter ya’ll!

Why Hello There!

Long time no blog

So October has been, like, the wettest one on record or something, with the most consecutive days of rain EVER.  This is not conducive to photo taking, because my camera is made of sugar and will melt in all that wet stuff.  But yesterday afternoon the sun made a brief appearance for a few crisp Autumn hours and we made the most of it with a long meandering property walk, camera in hand.

Wootie and Autumn were made for one another- their colours are more than complimentary, even if His Orangeness has a tendency to disappear into the foliage from time to time.

His brother is just as bad, because he looks like Autumn leaves AND shadows all mixed together.  He’s vanished more than I see him on our walks.  Of course, he’s mostly slogging through ditches and getting all tangled up in the poky bushes while chasing invisible critters, which is the main reason I don’t see much of him.

He’s Wootie’s shadow anyway.

He’s also a bad influence, because when TWooie smells something delicious (real or imagined) he gets VERY excited and animated and starts racing around in circles barking the most excited bark in the world.  It gets everyone else all excited too, and when he takes off, a certain percentage of BADDOGS are certain to follow him wherever he may go.  His latest protege is none other than Her Royal Pestiness, Peetie “Pocket Collie Rocket” who becomes completely deaf when she is in the presences of The Instigator.

Hears Nothing.

She doesn’t even know what she’s chasing!!  (Of course, I’m not sure TWooie does either, to be honest).  But she’s all “Peace.  Out” and gone and if I stop screeching her name in vain long enough, I can hear the dulcet and metronomic tones of TWooieBarking fading into the distance of the acreage while Peetie crashes gracelessly in hot pursuit.  Yesterday she came back so covered in mud I thought I’d acquired yet another dog (I did not photograph that mess).

Winter goes with them too.  There’s no photograph of that, because HE WASN’T THERE.  The three of them are like a crime syndicate, immune to the laws of man and beast and, you know, hearing.  So very naughty.  There’s many an afternoon where I have stomped back to the house grumbling obscenities under my breath, and half wishing the buggers never come back home, but they always make a surprise reappearance right before I am about to shut the door in all of their grimy little faces.

Addy really REALLY wants to go with them.  She tries so hard.  But they don’t let her, because she’s a nerd in a geeky sweater.

Often they wear their coyote vests, but sometimes they are too wet to put on again after our last outing, at least for Addy, who is a delicate flower.  She doesn’t like wearing “clothes” at the best of times, and she especially doesn’t like wearing damp clothes.  And woe to the person who tried to put both a sweater AND a coyote vest on The Pants.  She becomes immobilized, like that little kid in the snowsuit in A Christmas Story.

But our friend Keryn of Farm Fairy Fibre has knitted Addy a neckwarmer to keep her vital bits nice and toasty without subjecting her to a full body geeky sweater.

neckwarmer

Although I personally think she looks adorable in her bright coloured shirt :)

Maybe I should put one on Peetie, so I could at least spot her as she vanishes over the horizon in pursuit of TWoo.

I remain on the fence, somewhat, about Peetie.  That sounds awful and more ominous than I mean for it to.  She has many lovely qualities; she has a rock solid temperament when it comes to people and is happy to meet anyone, anywhere, anytime.  She is also wonderful when meeting other dogs – like every golden retriever in the history of golden retrievers, her first instinct is to invite them to play with her.  She has excellent bounce back, she likes to learn (now) and she’s pretty much perpetually happy.  She’s generous…she’ll give you the last Chuck-It Ball in the world if you ask for it.

But.

She. is. INSANE.  I know I’ve waxed about this already, but she never stops.  The only way to get her to stop (stop moving, stop bothering the cats, stop bothering the other dogs, stop eating THE ARMS OF MY CHAIRS, all fabric everywhere etc) is to give her a bone to chew on.  And this is where Peetie’s generosity ends.  Because she’s a stone cold asshole when it comes to bones and she’ll fight you (if you’re a dog) if you so much as look at her precious chunk of herbivore.  So when I leave for work in the morning, it’s not like I can leave her a bone to amuse herself with, because I’d come home to beaten up and pissed off dogs after work.  Thus do my armchairs and various fabrics suffer from her freedom/boredom.  And I’m not crating her for 10 hours a day and at bed time to – I don’t want to have that argument again, and I’m not judging anyone else for what they do, but *I* am not comfortable crating any dog that much in a day.

But.

She’s an endless source of amusement for Dexter, because she speaks his language (crazy).

She has stopped puking in the car (hurray!).  She’s a beautiful jumper and likes to work at agility … not that I have enough time to work with her as much as I’d like.  She’s funny!  I dunno.  And who else would want to live with her?  If *I* find her too much, I can’t imagine what someone else would make of her!  I think the trick is to make it through her adolescence, whereupon she will recover some her sanity (assuming I survive that long) and be a lovely adult dog.  But OMG what if she doesn’t?  What if she’s always insane?

You know, like somedog I know.

Actually, Dexter has become quite lovely to live with in his middle age.  Except for the whole hate-on-the-TWoo thing, but otherwise he’s pretty chill at home and he’s a lot more fun to play agility with now.  Not, like, in competition, but just for fun.  And of course, he is the most handsome border collie in the world.

Mostly.

And then there’s DoDo, who is still with me.  I had lots of promising interest in her, but it’s all fizzled out for one reason or another.  I got a lot of interest from people who want her as a companion for this big standard poodles, but DoDo doesn’t much care for big dogs.  Dexter is pretty much her size cut off, and even he’s a bit much for her sometimes, like the time he TKO’d her by accident.  She really needs a playmate her own size-ish.

Help me find a home for her by continuing to spread the word!  She’s a nice little thing, but she deserves a poodle home … and a break from Peetie.

Here’s a pretty sunlit Fall photo of my beautiful old lady dog, because I loves me some Piper.

And also, although this is a dog blog, I cannot resist sharing a photo of my turkeys.  I LOVE my turkeys.  My turkeys HATE me.  I am forever picking them up and hugging them, which I have on good authority that turkeys do not enjoy.  But I can’t help it.  They make the funniest noises and their heads are so soft and fuzzy.  So much for them being Christmas dinners.  However, now that they’ve grown up a bit, it looks like I have three hens and a tom, which is perfect for making MORE turkeys, which I can then in turn sell for Christmas dinners.

What’s the most awesome about this tom turkey is that so far, he rarely displays so that he looks like the turkey you drew in elementary school by tracing your hand.  Mostly he just looks like a larger hen.  But there are two occasions on which he puffs all up:  1) when DoDo is chasing him or his hens and 2) when my friend Michelle comes over.  Other people come over and he ignores them.  but when Michelle comes to visit, he gets all puffy and struts around gobbling.  We don’t know if its because he really doesn’t like her … or if he REALLY “likes” her.

Also, before you go, keep this in mind; I believe I have secured a really awesome location for Christmas themed photo shoots this year; I’ll have it nailed down by the end of the week.  I’m not doing characters-in-costume drop-in sessions this year, I’m offering individualized, studio portraiture style Christmas-themed sessions with simple but elegant sets and the option of a photoshopped background.  Stay tuned – I am really excited to try something different this year.  Sessions will happen on various weekends throughout the month of November and December :)  Be sure to check out my Big Air Photography page on Facebook to stay in the loop!