Monday, April 4, 2011

Ducks, Bunnies, and Porcupines...Oh My!

The weather has been wonderful here in the valley the last week.  The sun is shining and the dogs finally get to enjoy the canyon again.  The canyon hikes are a little too strenuous for the older dogs, but Cash and Miley enjoy these excursions. 

We started the weekend with a pair of ducks in the front yard.  I expect to see ducks in the canyon, but not at my house in town!  The dogs all went crazy, especially Miley (our lab) and begged to be let out to chase these delightful creatures.  From there, the day just was just filled with critters!  I lost track of how many bunnies we startled on our hike.  Again, much to the disappointment of the terrible twosome, we did not allow them to harass the wildlife.  I know porcupines live in the canyon, but I have never had the pleasure of observing one.  During our Sunday hike we rounded a bend to find one "hanging out" on our trail.  He observed us for awhile and eventually ambled off to the right.  I took Miley and Cash off the trail to the left.  Neither dog was too sure what the animal was, but they really, really wanted to investigate.  I will be eternally grateful that we walking on leash!  I have had the misfortune of seeing a few dogs over the years that "investigated" a porcupine.  Dogs faces and quills are not a good combination.  I thought we had seen the last of the porcupine, but on the way back down, he was in the same spot on the trail!  Fortunately Kevin spotted him and we once again circumnavigated this prickly creature.
Terrible twosome "dancing" together
My semester is almost over (yes!!) and a new round of obedience and agility courses will start at GNDT.   We are going to take Cash through both courses and Miley back through agility 1.  I love agility courses because they force humans to figure out how to communicate in a real meaningful way with their dogs.  It is all about building positive relationships and communication.  It is challenging for both humans and dogs and such a great bonding tool. 
Are you supposed to be there? 

Grumpy Miley when her "brother" moved too close during nap time