Sun Pony Ranch

Diary of novice (clueless) ranch owners

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

A guest of a different ilk

We got our first (unofficial) kennel customer this week! Actually, call it a co-worker who had a dog-sitter bail on him, but hey, we're not picky! So lucky us we get Zoie to spend the week with us. She's a doll.

She's also a Great Dane. She comes to the office every few weeks. Note that our office really isn't much larger than her kennel - so you can imagine the stir she causes. She's no trouble, mostly spending her time under Paul's desk - or as of this week - under my desk. But the first time you're sitting at your desk she walks up behind you and sticks her head over your shoulder to see what you are up to is a bit of a double-take moment. Make that the first several times.

Most of us learned quickly from Patrick's mistake. He'd just met her and he threw out his arms and kinda made a feignt at her. For the rest of that day she barked at him every time he came in sight, much to his chagrin. He wondered aloud to me if she was afraid of him. No - I said - you offered to wrestle with her and now she just wants to play! And she doesn't give up easily, either.

I was in Atlanta last week when Paul brought Zoie over. The first few days were pretty rough. She was unhappy being alone, and howled over that. Ginger was afraid our neighbors to the south would be disturbed by the noise and report that we'd started the kennel early, so she was out there a lot to try and calm her down. By Friday morning Ginger was about at her wits end, so I packed Zoie up and brought her into the office with me. This worked great - other than the fact I think Zoie thought that Paul would be here so she got really excited when we pulled into the parking lot. But the main thing is that she's a social girl and there are lots of peoples here to talk to, so she is quite content.

Over the weekend we learned a new trick - we take her down to the barn when we need to muck stalls, and just close all the doors so she can romp all she wants. She loves it. She'll run into any stall and drink out of the automatic waterers which are just the right height for her. She's not fond of being shut into a stall, but we think it's amusing. She just stands right up against the door to watch us.

First few times she was down, though, there were still horses in the stalls. Oooh, didn't like that! I guess she isn't accustomed to seeing animals bigger than she is. We're working on acclimating her.

Ranch Dog training in full swing.

Monday I brought her back to the office with me. I drive an Outback. While she can stand up easily in the back, she can't raise her head much above the top of her back. Since I'd rather have her lay down anyways, that's fine with me. Well, this morning she was restless, and ended up hopping over into the back seat. Once there you'd think she'd lie sideways across the seat. Nope, she prefers to brace her butt against the back of the seat and stand facing forwards. How in the world she manages to balance like that I don't know because at that range she's way too big for me to see in the mirror, and I am, after all, trying to keep my eyes on the road. Fortunately after a few commands and vague hand swishes she usually will turn and lie down.

But I went to get her pillow out this morning when I got to the office. Of course at that time she wouldn't stay in the back seat but hopped over and was very eager to get out. I managed to keep her in the car while pulling the pillow out from under her, but she was still poised to come out when I reached up to close the hatch back. She got the picture, and backed right up out of the way. When I saw what she'd done, though, it was all I could do to not drop my lunch and computer and ther various other things in my hands -- she'd pushed her butt back OVER the back seat so that it was now sitting on top of the seat and her back legs pointing straight out forwards! It looked so rediculous I just stood there cracking up. I actually had my camera with me... alas, she didn't sit still long enough for the shot.



Post a Comment

<< Home