Friday, December 08, 2006

Of dogs and pigs

First of all it's bloody cold here. It's, like, 35 or something.

Now I know those of you north of the midlands of South Carolina will chuckle indulgently at me but, there it is. Bloody cold. To me.

So I'm sitting in the house, reading to the babies and the dogs start barking. This isn't unusual. We have 6 dogs and they are, to a dog, pretty freakin' dumb. They are also spread out: one in the barnyard (Turkish), two in the yard (Jake, the daftest dog on earth, and Reggie, the psycho) and three in the house.

The outside dogs tend to egg each other on. One barks and the other join in having seen and heard NOTHING amiss, just taking their idiotic dog-brother on his word. Bark! Space aliens! With tentacles! Bark! El Chupacabra! Attack! Bark, bark, bark!


Reggie, the psycho dog, will bark at dirt. Or leaves. Or clouds. Or some random itch behind his left elbow.

Anyway, this results in my ignoring them for the most part. I have actually learned to distinguish their barks after a fashion, much like I can tell the babies's different cries.

So, I'm reading to the bubs, and I hear the OMIGOD, OMIGOD, AHHH! DOGORSOMETHING! bark. This one is usually reserved for actual dogs on the property (as opposed to dogs riding by in pick-up trucks and dogs running more or less in the road with their stupid white trash owner who thinks it's cool to allow them to roam people's yards whilst she 'jogs'.)

Well, strange dogs are bad so I sigh, get up, bundle up to the eyes (bloody cold, remember?) and trudge out.

I stroll out into the yard, expecting nothing, and stop, startled. Something big, fast, and very dog-like sprints down the other side of the picket fence. The dogs go mad.

Galvanized, I hurry up to the gate.

Something else - big, fast - sprints behind the chicken lot. There're feathers all over, and these weird, winding ruts in the partially frozen ground. Like Mutant Moles Gone Mad. What the HECK?

Suddenly something right at my elbow (I'm leaning over the gate) goes: "Hugph?"

Well I screamed like a girl, I can tell you.

When I recovered enough to breathe I saw Bunty, one of my girl pigs, gallop down the drive, into the road, and around the corner. About that time Green and Ginger came around the shed and bustled up to me as if to say: "Hey, momma, got food? Food? Huh? Isn't this cool? Wow, chickens! Got food, Momma?"

The pigs were out. Damn. It.

Long story short (too late) I spent the better part of an hour trying to get those blasted pigs. Cursing and waddling around a barnyard while my small children are up to who-knows-what in the house is NOT my idea of a good time. I really really really need a dog! And by that I mean a useful dog. Not something with dog DNA that just eats and sleeps and barks at the random chupacabra!


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At 8:50 PM, Anonymous VegaVixen said...

Many years ago, when I was small, my Great Uncle Lenwood out in the flat tobacco country of NC had a large pig named Spot. He had taught Spot to come to him when he whistled. Pigs are incredibly intelligent, you know.

That year, by the way, I had my first experience with the wonders of electric wire fencing, and the mystery of current flow though the human body.

Didn't see Spot the following year, but there was another big pig named Snoopy, who had also been trained to come to Uncle Lenwood on a whistle.

I guess I'm suggesting that you consider teaching the pigs to come when you call. Much easier than training the "dogs."


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