Saturday, July 9, 2011

Lena Loves Summers




Lena was rescued from a pound in Redding by Bones Dog Rescue. When I adopted Lena about 5 years ago I was told she had been "picked up" while running on the streets of Redding. What I was not told is that Lena LOVES to run away. She is very, very adept at the art of escape. Here is what is takes to make Lena a happy dog - action. She thrives around horses, on the trail, and herding me through life. If I leave her at home for a couple of days she finds a new escape route out of my back yard and trots along her happy way, probably looking for a bit of attention and excitement.

Deceptive in her cuteness, Lena is a hard-core alpha girlie whose middle name is determined. As a rescue dog, her breeding is uncertain. I'd lay my money down on a kelpie and aussie heritage. Stella, who is a pit bull mix, puts up with a lot from Lena who has never learned to play, share, or give an inch. Stella regularly comes to me to referee . . . "Mom, Lena stole my bone again and won't give it back."

During summers, Lena gets all the excitement and action she craves. It is during the school year that she pouts about, begging me for adventure and any kind of break in what I admit is a bit of a boring routine for dogs. I get up, go to work, come home, change, go to the stable . . . I LOVE this routine, Lena likes the "go to the stable" part.

Today we have a busy day - I have to White Lightning Levi's feet. Levi is a badly foundered, lovely 10 year old quarter horse Heart of the Redwoods Rescue took in on Tuesday. We need to help set up a new pasture, and finally catch that stinker Autumn who has been determined to avoid me when I walk through the general pasture.

Enjoy your Saturday everyone, Lena will be enjoying hers here in Humboldt County where our heat wave of 70 degrees is continuing.
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Monday, July 4, 2011

"Horse Camping" From the Horse's Point of View


Autumn: Here is a picture of me and Cherie, taken while we were "horse camping" by Horse Mountain in Six Rivers National Forest. Cherie is the one with the ear-to-ear grin. I'm the one saying, "Can we go home yet?"
One thing I learned about horse camping is that humans take lots and lots of pictures. This is a picture of mountains and fog. Sheeesh. What is the big deal? I went up and down lots and lots of mountains. I don't like mountains.

I also learned that humans do lots of weird things that make absolutely no sense . . .

. . . and they keep taking pictures of mountains at different times during the day. Humans are very puzzling. I would prefer to forget the mountains I hauled Cherie's not exactly petite self up and down.

Here is a picture of me before all the "trail riding". When Cherie came to get me from the pasture a few hours before this picture was taken, I ran to hide in the trees. I was hoping she would mistake me for an elk or a moose. Here I am hiding in more trees in our "base camp".

More mountains. I was starting to get very concerned that Cherie and her friends were taking pictures of all those mountains because they planned to have us carry them over them.

This is Cherie's dog Lena. I don't really mind dogs. Marcel, a very large horse who has a human named Nanette, hates them. He kept giving Lena the stinky face.

This is Marcel thinking about squashing Lena. Now that I think about it, Lena was a bit annoying. She did not have carry anything or anyone on the trail. Why do canines have it so much easier than us equines? I would like to go "dog camping" and watch the dogs do all the hard work.

This is a picture of Tag, Marcel, Jericho, and their humans going up a hill. Hills are little mountains. Still don't like them.

See what I mean? Mountains are not good for horses! We had to squeeze across this teeny, crumbling trail with a steep mountain side millimeters away from our hoofs. Cherie rode me through. HUMANS, listen up! We are horses, NOT pegasi!

It was a good thing that Cherie and the other humans brought lots of good food for us because the smelly cows that lived in the area had eaten most of the good grass. Here is a picture of some kind of useless plant. I could not eat it. Cherie said it was a "dogwood" but I did not see any kind of resemblance to any dogs I know.

This is a forest service road marker. Jericho, Laura's horse, found the trail it marked. When it comes to finding the fastest way home, he is amazing.

Maybe I shouldn't have pushed him into the electric fence. This was my favorite trail ever. It cut many miles off the ride. Pounds x miles = tired horses. Even with Jericho's short cut I was VERY tired by the time we got back to camp.

This is where Cherie slept. When she was younger she used to do lots of back packing. Do other people start horse camping when they get too old (lazy) to carry their own pack?

Ha Ha Ha Ha. Look what happened to her tent. Serves her right. On the last day she rode me into a spring-fed water hole that camouflaged a horse-eating bog monster. It tried to suck me into the deep, deep mud. The other humans were surprised she stayed in the saddle when I tried to spin around and run into a tree.


Just look at me! See what horse camping does to horses? I am much thinner looking than in the first picture of me when we had just arrived at camp. And that wet stuff is water Cherie threw at me to wash the sweat off. There was LOTS of sweat to wash off.

More of the strange things humans do on horse camping trips. Jericho told me I should be happy that we didn't have to go "back country horse camping" and haul all that stuff that humans eat to some awful wilderness camp.
Eeewwwwww! Someone needed to get stupid Lena off of our food. It was just wrong that she used our yummy hay for a bed. Why was she tired? She didn't do any hard work. Cherie, how would you like it if Lena took a little nap on that tri-tip you kept making so many mnnnnmnnnnn noises over when you ate it for dinner?


Well folks, I survived horse-camping. I don't really recommend it. Jericho seemed to have fun going up and down tiny trails and over all kinds of dangerous-for-horses kind of things. His human Laura called this "trail trial practice." What do you expect, he's an Arabian.


This is Tag. He used to be a "working horse" and told me that horse camping was actually easy compared to what humans make some horses do. I thought he was pretty cute. In fact, I wouldn't mind getting to share his pasture.

When I get home I am going to tell that faker Red Horse that the next time Cherie starts talking about going horse camping, I'M going to be the one that gets to be lame. Just wait until the next time she tries to catch me. I don't think so.