Archive for August, 2006

Mama Bear

Wednesday, August 23rd, 2006


When Dora was a puppy, she adopted a stuffed bear the size of a beagle with fluffy fake fur. She didn’t just sleep on it. She didn’t just drag it around. She nursed on its paws.

We now think she has a personality disorder. She still does it and she is five years old.

Whenever two people are in the same room and not paying attention to her, she drags her Mama Bear out of her toy box, drapes herself across it and sticks a paw in her mouth.

She is a pitiful sight.

Normally Dora is the alpha dog, patrolling the yard and house and only settling down for a nap when she is sure of our safety.

But behind that tough hunter’s heart is still a puppy.

The Battle of the Mole

Tuesday, August 22nd, 2006

Last summer we fought the battle of the mole.

Early in the summer Dora Mae, (head of homeland security for our property) set up camp and patrolled the backyard on extra duty. She had detected covert operations and was determined to rid the yard of their presence. While we had no idea in the first few days what was going on, Dora had unearthed tunnels and sat, ready to grab, with her head stuck into one end of a hole.

She would wake up on the morning, ignore her bowl of breakfast, and head outside. She would camp for a long time, watching for activities and would only come inside for water and food when she could no longer handle starvation.

I would watch her from my breakfast table as she dug and dug and dug her way across the yard, chasing the varmits. Chasing univited guests is her job.

When we finally realized that the object of her interest was a mole or two, I called the pest guys who take care of our yard and home. They sent a mole specialist who happened to be a grown-up ex-student of mine. He surveyed the damaged caused by the mole with Dora Mae in hot pursuit and admitted he couldn’t do anything to help. It seems that Dora had uprooted the backyard to such an extent that there was no way to find a tunnel to set a trap. I had to agree. Dora had dug up the entire backyard. He did think that the moles wouldn’t be able to stay and would probably be gone soon since they would have no way to stay inside their tunnels. Dora had done her job, he said.

And so, last summer, we fought the battle of the mole. Dora had won.

And in August of last year, we treated for grub worms, which he said were the cause of all the mole activity. Get rid of next year’s grubs and you get rid of next year’s moles.

And this year (although very late for their arrival), they are back in spite of our treatment for grub worms. The only good thing about it, is that they have stayed in the front yard this year and have not attempted to tunnel into the backyard. Its a good thing, too. The grass has finally grown in back there.

I actually saw a mole a day ago, coming out of one of the holes in our neighbors yard. He is an odd looking critter with huge feet/claws. How odd of God!

Dog Days of Summer

Monday, August 21st, 2006

The heat of August in Texas has overtaken our household. We stay inside with the air conditioning, the fans blowing on full blast and a glass of iced tea nearby. Even the evenings are too hot for much of a walk unless we take a bottle of water and keep the browsing at a slow enough pace to endure it, but short enough to get home by the time the water bottle is empty.

Its hot.

And Dora the Dappled Dachshund sleeps for the most part, wedged in next to me in my chair while I work from my laptop in the living room.

I get to rub her velvet furry tummy because she often flips upside down while she dozes.