Friday, April 1, 2011

We Can Rest Easy Tonight

Ellie Mae is one of our guardian dogs. Nothing enters the property without her knowledge. That is, unless she is eating broken eggs in the backyard, then a whole lot gets by her.

She alerts us to strange vehicles, deer, cats, you name it. Amazingly, she can tell the difference between our barn cats and the feral cats that occasionally roam through. The barn cats are treated as her kith and kin, while the feral cats are the enemy to be driven away with great ferocity. Occasionally, we cannot figure out WHY we are being alerted. I guess this is because we are ONLY human.

Her biggest concern, for unknown reasons, is the flock of crows that lives in the neighborhood. They roost in the trees along the property line, pick up odds and ends from the compost pile, and eat the eggs that the hens occasionally lay outside. Perhaps this is the basis of the controversy…Ellie loves her eggs.

Ellie and the crows have this ongoing battle. They land in the yard, the field, or the orchard and walk around, talking to each other. When she catches sight of them, she charges out, tail spinning, barking fiercely. They fly up into the nearby trees and taunt her. Occasionally, she gets so frustrated with their taunting, that she continues to bark, and jumps around, causing bits of grass to fly around.

The other day, Tom pulled some old irrigation tape out of one of the garden beds in anticipation of tilling and re-planting. He rolled it up and hung it on the fence that runs around the garden, with the intention of picking it up on his next trip down the driveway.

All of a sudden, from out of nowhere, Ellie came charging down the driveway, barking furiously. Tom couldn’t see anything, but she was convinced there was some type of trouble. He watched her to see if he could figure out what was going on. Sure enough, she charged up to where that old t-tape was hanging on the fencepost. It didn’t move. She barked some more. She charged it, barked at it, but it wouldn’t go away. It seems then she got slightly worried and frustrated. Eventually, she gave up the fight. Only to charge out at it once again later in the day. She continued to do this as long as it hung on the fencepost.

Tom had a great time laughing at how she thought that old tape was a crow! He couldn’t understand how she could think such a thing, until A came out, and as she was going out the drive, she said “What’s that really ugly bird up there? Oh, it’s NOT a bird!” THAT gave Tom a laugh as well!

Now, I don’t know about Tom, but I will indeed rest much easier knowing that we will not be attacked by crows or worn out t-tape as long as Ellie Mae is on the job!

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