A blog about my life with dogs.......

Tuesday, April 16, 2013


This week.....
A moment of silence to observe the sadness of the tragic event this week at the Boston Marathon.

Monday, April 8, 2013

The sun came out in Iowa

Another busy week has flashed past us here at HMFT bloggy headquarters. Bugsy and I are working back up to our 5k and running on the nature trail this week we saw an American Mink. I  have never seen this animal before and was careful to take a long, good look at what I saw. The animal was a chocolatey brown color and was easily over a foot long. I gazed at the creature moving swiftly along the path as we were, it watching us, us watching it.

Then on the drive home from flyball training I spotted an Osprey! I was excited to have spotted it. Macbride Raptor Project has been instrumental in the osprey introduction plan in place here in Iowa. We keep tabs on nesting sites, band babies and have been tracking the progress of the birds as they continue to return to Iowa. Also, these birds just look cool. They're like the punk rockers of the Iowa raptor population.

Miles got a haircut!


 Doesn't he look cute!?!? I am so pleased with the care he has received at Kirkwood Community College. Miles has been groomed by the students of the dog grooming program at KCC. They have done a fabulous job of helping shy Miles feel comfortable. Both times I picked him up from his hair cut I found him playing with a student. Seeing him playing instead of in a crate made me really happy, but it was also a smart move on the part of grooming instructor Terry Anderson. Rounding off the end of a grooming session with some fun time is no doubt going to help Miles remember the groomers as a happy place to be.

After Miles' haircut I was inspired to take a group picture for a new blog header. I really like to have an outdoor picture as the blog head, but until the green spring and summer sun start improving the Iowa landscape the above photo is the new blog header. Below is one of the shots I took in my living room.(I altered it with photoshop so it looks like a drawing, it was not drawn by me!)

Miles and Captain enjoy an off leash hike

Monday, April 1, 2013

Good walk, poptart.

            This week, with the help of my trusty "Activity Manager" 
                                        the dogs and I have visited two new places. 
Ready to walk!
                      One of which really surprised me.....

  ...In the spirit of trying new things, I packed Wonder Dog in the car with me on the way out to the grocery store. I figured I'd find a place to stop somewhere in between the store and home for a dog walk. I could think of two parks, but she had been to them before. As I drove down a road I have driven down a hundred million times I noticed that there was a side walk in front of a small contrived body of water in front of a strip mall of businesses. The body of water was filled with floating Mallard ducks and Canada geese. The water was splashing over a spillway causing a misty spray to splash up on the sidewalk. Surely I had noticed this pond before, but never as a "place to go for a walk". I pulled over and hooked Wonder Dog to the 15 foot retractable leash and we walked down the sidewalk to the pond. The pond was very contrived, with large white gravel rocks 2 feet around its edges on all sides, a cement spillway took the water beneath the road and funneled it to a marshy area beyond. As we walked, Wonder Dog nosed the ground. She zig zagged back and forth in heaven with all the green poo and good sniffing. We left the sidewalk behind and began circling the pond, as we got further from the road, grassy prairie areas surrounded the mowed grass beyond the ponds graveled edges providing habitat for wildlife. The geese in the pond watched us and honked, seemingly agitated. Most of the ducks took off, flying across the street towards the marshy wetland. As we finished a half circle around the first pond we came to another small damn connecting this pond to another. Empty shells floated at the waters edge, and I imagined a raccoon having made a meal there. I recalled seeing many people fishing this pond over the years, both on the warms days of summer and atop the ice in the freezing winter. But on this day, Easter as it was, everyone was elsewhere. We trailed the edge of the 2nd pond and found it connected to a third. A great blue heron rose up from the waters edge having decided we were too near, and landed on the opposite side of the pond.  An amazing site, I watched the bird for some time as Wonder sniffed at, read the story on the ground, invisible to me. We circled around the 3rd pond, having leaped over a muddy creek bed, and again the great blue heron rose up and moved away from us. I watched the grassy areas, searching the trees for raptors and watching the tall dry amber shoots of dead prairie grass wave in the cold wind. The ducks made a commotion and just as I looked back to her Wonder leaped into the pond! I can't tell you weather she was overcome by the temptation of the quacking ducks on the water, or if some creature, a turtle? A fish? A muskrat? slid into the water just in front of her calling her to chase after it. Wonder popped back out of the water like a pop tart out of a toaster with a strong spring. The snow here has gone away, but for a few piles in shady spots. The weather has warmed so that I don't wear long underwear anymore, but the water still must have been frightfully cold. She had gone all the way under, and I'm not sure if that had been her intent, or if the pond dropped off so fast she hadn't had a choice. Either way she was none the worse for wear. If I could guess her feeling at the moment she popped out of the water, I'd guess she had decided it was too cold for a dip after all, but it had been worth a try. Wonder Dog shook off a few times and continued happily sniffing the goose poo all the way around the other sides of the ponds. She didn't give up her enthusiasm as we returned to the sidewalk and made it back to the car. I gave her a quick sniff. Her thin coat and repeated shaking had left no noticeable trace of pond smell on her. We drove to the grocery store. She perched on the console next to the driver seat, leaning forward as much as her seat belt would allow her. Her head leaned against mine. Good dog. And a good walk too. Not bad for a contrived triple pond. The sight of a great blue heron almost made the strip mall signs in the distance disappear.

Feel like chicken tonight?
Chicken for 5 dogs and 2 cats.

Or maybe...
Beef is whats for dinner?
Beef chunks with dried organic kale and organic coconut oil.
A tip from me...


I keep a spray bottle of water handy. I use it to spray the leaves of my houseplants, but I also spray the dogs home made food whenever I add dried things like dehydrated kale or any kind of dried herbal supplement. Nothing is more unappetizing than inhaling pepper, or breathing pixie stick sugar. I'm sure a nose full of dried herbs would be really annoying so if I add a dry herb, green or supplement I always make sure to spray it down with some water before serving.

Bugsy turned down the covers.