Friday, December 30, 2016

The wood pile

Since we are now partially heating with wood, we got two cords of wood delivered and are working hard to get it into the enclosed porch.  The easiest way is to throw pieces over the dog fence until there is a big pile then move the pieces inside.  Easier because the dogs all stay inside while the wood is being tossed over the fence and then they come outside and help.

Of course, their idea of help isn't necessarily my idea of help.  I tried to convince Bill to actually pick up a chunk of wood but it didn't work.  

Considering that a big pile of wood suddenly appeared in the fenced area, the blind girls did well avoiding it, likely due to the smell.  Brook was a bit confused initially thinking that we were going inside each time I walked in with wood.  After a few times, she gave up and just hung out.

Friday, December 23, 2016

Hiker has a question...

There was another snow storm the other day and we were snowed in (again) since the plows had been taken off the roads.  We made the best of it and got outside to play.

Our blind girl Hiker this considered snow swimming?

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

What are they doing?

We recently had some men in to do some work in the kitchen.  Since our deaf boy Trail is convinced that the world revolves around him and that everyone wants to pet him, he was put in the crate in the car.  Callie stayed in her space, Bill stayed on the couch, blind and deaf Brook went to bed and blind Hiker just wondered what was going on.

After the men were gone, we were so cozy and warm because they installed our new wood stove.

Brook and Trail

Later, Trail got up close. I was a bit worried that he was too close, but he only stayed a couple of minutes.

Now we are really ready for winter.

Thursday, December 08, 2016

Cost of Cat Litter: $92.00

Recently we had an incident where cat litter cost $92.00.  Well, actually it was $91.73.  

Why so expensive?  Ask Trail.

not feeling well

Despite two barriers, our deaf boy Trail got into the cat litter and seemed to be fine, then two days later, he was not feeling well.  A trip to the vet, some anti-nausea medication and a few days later he was much better and back to normal. Normal being chasing the cat, playing ball and being silly. 

During the couple of days that Trail wasn't himself, the biggest change was that he wasn't his "velcro" self that he (and most Australian Cattle Dogs) are known for.  I was able to go places such as the other room all by myself. I could move more than a foot away from him without having him jump and follow like I might never return. I didn't like it. Not one bit!

Lesson learned for Trail? Hope so.

Tuesday, December 06, 2016

Lights But No Heat

Thanks for all your kind words during our recent power outage.  We lost power Sunday afternoon, had it back overnight Tuesday then it was out again until Thursday evening.  It was a long week. Cold and dark too!  Fortunately cooking and hot cups of tea were possible with a one burner camp stove. Solar lights, a homemade olive oil lamp and layers of blankets on crates got us through.

We're still watching the weather just in case.

Trail and Darby

In case you're wondering who Darby is...well he was a barn cat at our former home.  Prior to getting an outside space for the barn cats, they were in a bedroom upstairs. Darby was the only one who ventured downstairs and was very happy mingling with the dogs. could he be sent back outside? (I know, I know, some of you would!)

Bill has hunkered down in an old jacket, waiting for spring.

Our electrician is coming this week to install heat and hopefully next week our new woodstove will be installed.  

Thursday, December 01, 2016

First Winter Storm 2016

We had the first nor'easter storm of the season with heavy wet snow, high winds and lots of power outages.  

Of course, the dogs loved it!

Brook and Trail


You may be wondering where the others are.  Hiker and Bill are in the house. Neither of them are big fans of the cold and refused to go outside.  Not that it is much warmer inside since we have been without power and therefore no heat since Sunday afternoon.  At the time I am posting this, it was only 0C/32F in the house. 


Yes, it does look pretty. But it would look a whole prettier if we were seeing it from a heated house!

Monday, November 21, 2016

Stair Barriers

A challenge with our new (to us) house is that the layout is different and therefore the access to certain areas has to be blocked until we decide who is going to be where. Currently the three barn cats are in a bedroom upstairs until their outside accommodations are ready (we've got a school bus for them and the chickens). The barn cats are a bit upset and don't need the dogs snuffling along the bottom of the door.

For now, there is a baby gate at the bottom of the stairs and a couple of boxes to hold it in place so that none of the dogs can get upstairs.  That is the theory of it. In reality, well...along comes a very determined blind and mostly deaf Australian Cattle Dog named Brook.

Brook sat with her chin resting on the box and whined. A little coaxing and she gave up. But not for long.

About a half hour later, she was whining again and this is what she had done.

I think that the majority of the whining was due to the fact that she couldn't get down.  She reached out with her paw and there was no solid surface so she continued to whine.  Not to worry, after a picture, she was scooped up and gently deposited on the floor.

Once again, proof that a blind and mostly deaf dog is just really a "normal" dog who does things that any dog would do.

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Getting Settled

We are getting settled in our new house and of course, there continues to be times when things get "lost" under and around the boxes.  For Trial, it is usually his beloved Chuck (chuck-it ball).

After a few times of having to "rescue" Chuck while unpacking and putting things away, I told him he was on his own. Yes, the fact that I told him really didn't mean anything, after all he is a dog and also deaf but he seemed to understand.

That is Trail's butt as he desperately pushes himself between boxes to get his ball.

A few days before we moved, there appeared at the barn a little kitten.  As you can imagine, this little pathetic, half starved tiny beast is now a member of our home.  Her name is Loretta.

Loretta and Arthur
Sort of a house warming gift from somewhere maybe?  Or else we're just a big soft-hearted bunch which isn't so bad.

Tuesday, November 08, 2016

On The Move!

It started with a an official Keep Out barrier.

unhappy Trail

Then, for about a week, there were days when there were no dogs allowed in certain areas of the house.  Then there was chaos.

There were boxes and piles of household items. Made it a bit of a challenge for the blind dogs to navigate. But not for Trail. He managed to find a small sun spot in the midst of the chaos (with a couple of cats if you look closely).

Yup, we were moving again.

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Tasty TOMATO Tuesday

It is that time of year again...tomato harvest time!  As I have mentioned previously, never underestimate the determination of a blind and mostly deaf dog.  All of the pack enjoy tomatoes but blind and deaf Brook is especially excited about fresh tomatoes.

Back when the garden was planted, I put in a cherry-type tomato plant near the back door just for the dogs.  At the time I didn't realize that Brook took that to mean that she could help herself whenever she wanted to!

First, she inspects the plant and "looks" for ripe ones.

Then, closer inspection to be sure.

Once she figured out how to get over the low ornamental fence, she was in.

The plant is getting a bit damaged but it is a very large plant and Brook is enjoying herself, so that's okay.

Brook and a couple of the others will actually pick their own tomatoes. They quickly discovered that if the tomato releases easily it is good to eat. However, there is the occasional green one that gets eaten too.

This is something that Brook does every time she goes outside, even in the middle of the night when out for a pee.  At least I know where to find her.

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Uh oh...Chuck Fell In!!

As you may recall from previous posts, our deaf boy Trail is very attached to his orange chuck-it ball, a.k.a "Chuck".  He takes the ball with him wherever he can - upstairs, downstairs, on the couch and to bed.  When he can't find Chuck or Chuck has been put somewhere (by Trail), he will indicate that he needs help by staring, then to the spot and sometimes a little whining.  If I look at Trail and hold my hands out, palms up, he will go and get Chuck or take me to the spot where it is.

Trail and his orange Chuck

Well, the other day, while playing chase with Chuck, there was an incident. Chuck fell in!

"Chuck. in there?"

The heating vent became dislodged when Trail was chasing and all I heard was a slight thunk and then a few fainter ones.  Chuck was gone!

"Chuck, come back!"

Poor Trail kept coming to me and then running back to the hole in the floor.  

I tried substituting a blue Chuck ball but Trail was not having any of that. What to do? Well, I did consider pulling down the duct work in the basement but reconsidered since I wasn't sure that was such a good idea.

The next day, I went to town and ninety-two dollars later, Trail has a new Chuck.  Okay, the ball really didn't cost that much! Since I was in town I did some grocery shopping and stocked up.  The orange chuck comes in a package that has a blue one and a glow in the dark one. So, we now have three blue and three glow in the dark balls that none of the dogs are interested in. (sigh)

Trail is now happy again and we are very careful about the heat vents in the floor.

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Throwback Thursday

June 2010

This was Hiker's first camping trip - a backpacking trip in the Allegheny National Forest.  I still remember friends saying "you can't take a blind dog backpacking!"

Yes, we proved them wrong. We all had a great time.

Bill, Callie and Hiker in the Allegheny Reservoir

Thursday, September 08, 2016

Treats From Hiker

The other day blind Hiker went for acupuncture again.  We are going every three to four months and having fantastic results.  Our appointments have been first thing in the morning and Hiker is encouraged by the staff to visit and wander around the clinic before other clients arrive.  This seems to help her settle before her treatment.

During her wandering, she was given a rawhide chew which she didn't bother to eat since the freeze dried liver treats were also available.  When we left, the receptionist gave me Hiker's treat to take home.  I said no thanks since it would likely cause problems having only one treat.  I was surprised but pleased when she offered one for everybody! (good sales tactic too, since they really enjoyed them I will buy a bag)

Bill took his onto the bed

blind Brook on the chair and deaf Trail

Hiker (of course) in her crate

Callie in the comfort and seclusion of her crate

A happy pack, thanks to Hiker's acupuncture appointment.

Friday, September 02, 2016

Wanted: Window Cleaner

Our deaf boy Trail enjoys watching the great outdoors from the kitchen window 

But for some reason he takes great pleasure in smearing his nose all over the window.

Somebody needs to clean that window. 

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Tasty Tuesday

We've all seen those sad pictures of animals that have gotten their head stuck in a container. The critter that has tried to get some morsel of food. Well, we had something similar happen with Trail.  He didn't get stuck but he pushed his head in as far as possible.

I use a cut down milk jug for feeding the barn cats and if you have ever had a cat around, you know how appealing catfood is to dogs.  Trail grabbed the empty jug and gave the inside a very thorough licking to get every last little crumb.

(Note the grip of his left paw!)

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Can You Help Me?

Trail does not like to share his beloved orange Chuck-It ball (a.k.a Chuck) but for some reason, he likes to drop it on the couch beside another dog.  It would be quite easy for him to grab it must be easier to give the pathetic look.

"Can you help me?"

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Having to Choose

Sometimes you have to make a choice. 

It can be a difficult thing to do, making that decision, especially in a multi-dog home.  

Which one would be better?


Sometimes you just can't decide. So...have both!

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Tasty Tuesday

You may recall that Hiker has some spine/neck issues for which she continues to go for acupuncture. With this in mind, I thought it would be a good idea for her to have her food bowl raised off the floor.

We were fortunate to get a really awesome deal on a pail of peanut butter (yes, we do eat that much peanut butter in our home!) and I thought that the pail would be a perfect height for Hiker's food dish.

I'm not sure that she really gets the concept though...

Tuesday, August 09, 2016

We're okay...

Here at acd6pack we're okay.  

Really, we are.

(yes, Brook is sleeping, no she didn't fall off the chair!)

Tuesday, February 02, 2016

Tasty Tuesday

It was one of those decisions that I thought about for a few seconds. 

Should I?  I know they would like it.  Nah, probably shouldn't.  Ah, geez, why not?

So I did.

I was scraping out the last of the peanut butter from the jar and let them all have a turn licking the spatula.

Friday, January 29, 2016

It happened again...

It happened again and it keeps happening.

That darned cat is in blind Hiker's crate AGAIN.

No amount of barking will get him to leave and for some reason, Hiker refuses to be in the crate with him. So, she becomes a bit dramatic...