February 26, 2017

Hounds Enjoy Sunny And Freezing

While standing outside last night staring at the Big Dipper while the bloodhounds did their last trip of the day ... it was freezing. It was much colder than earlier and I could tell this morning was going to be colder than they had predicted.

When the hounds and I stepped outside for the first pictures of the day it was 24°, making it hard to believe just two mornings ago it was already above 60° at the same time of day.

It did not matter to the hounds though. I can't remember where freezing weather or snow has ever bothered Sadie but I can tell that Stella is not a fan of the freezing temps. Heidi ... was deep inside the blankets and sleeping bag until tomorrow when it's warmer.

I took a couple of hours not only to drink my two cups of coffee but reading a lot on the internet. Plus I wanted it to get a little warmer before our first walk of the day.

It was nice, no wind today so that made a huge difference. Everyday is different with Stella though and this morning I had to pull out the 6' standard dog leash much earlier because her stubbornness had gone off the charts within minutes of starting the walk.

She was in the total ignoring mode, even after I walked over to her and tugged at her collar to get her to walk. She did not move and refused to come with Sadie and I. So I found it quite easy to reach into my pocket and pull out the leash.

I find it to have a motivating effect on her if she wears it while walking. I don't even have to hold it and she will stay with us and still have the ability to drift off when she has the urge to.

So what was the problem??  Temps below freezing seems to make things more tempting to eat. So her urge to eat 'stuff' takes over the desire to walk and run in the field. Luckily she has never gotten sick but there are some days I don't feel like putting up with it .... so depending on her level of stubbornness determines if the leash is used.

With the temperatures so low I found it surprising to hear so many birds chirping as we walked. I couldn't see them to take pictures of them but I could hear them. They were having quite a conversation.

Here Stella takes off to the middle of the field, dragging the leash along. What is interesting is when I called her to "come on", she didn't hesitate in joining me and Sadie on the path back home.

Hopefully she will be showing signs of weight gain in the next month. I am feeding her kibble with more protein and higher fat, plus an added cup of kibble. I found that SPORTMix dog food is manufactured and owned by the same family that owns Earthborn dog food.

Three years ago this grass area was full of wild bushes and small saplings. Some of the overgrowth was taller than 6' high. I cut it down, then raked it and pulled all the vines and roots out of the ground, as much as possible before planting grass seed. I hope to have the same result I did here over on the bank area left of the trees and old fence post.

I guess I will find out if the landscaping business owner is right about freezing temps for a couple of days and grass seed. He thought it would be okay to plant some on Friday.

Just as she started the walk, Stella did not want to follow me. Only this time I didn't say a word to either one of them. I kept walking to the house after snapping the pictures. I knew eventually they would be at the door wanting inside.

It didn't take long for Sadie to come sprinting to the house. I had not even taken my coat of yet when I heard her at the door wanting in. She doesn't bark but will use her paw on the aluminum screen door to let me know she is there.

Stella stayed out longer. As I looked at her from inside, she glanced up looking confused since Sadie and I were nowhere in sight. She glanced different directions but couldn't see or pick up our scents. With leash and all she came sprinting to the backyard, stopped and looked different directions and then came running for the door. Since she is use to escaping by moving a lever door handle with her nose to open the door ... she will try that on all of my round door handles without success.

I heard her at the door trying to open the door with her nose.

By the time we took our afternoon walk a little after 2pm, the temps were close to 50 and felt much better even with more wind. I decided this afternoon's walk would be one of freedom ... the hounds could do whatever they wanted.

At first I thought Stella would be hanging back, I kept walking but was somewhat surprised when she came trotting towards me. Did the time on the leash this morning have anything to do with it?

Of course that was all over after both her and Sadie was chowing done. I didn't want to look and kept walk, enjoying the afternoon weather.

Bye Stella, we will see you on the way back.

Sadie didn't let me get as far as the corner before she sprinted by me. She always does that. She is the perfect hound for this type of walk with a large field of grass and scents.

She wanted to make one final check to see if Stella was coming or not. We didn't see any sign of Stella so we took off.

Sadie had the whole field to herself.

I barely caught a glimpse of Stella as I checked the area along the 'side' of the wooded area ... she wasn't there but if you look closer she is over to the right and almost outside of the boundary I will allow in that part of the field.

Once Sadie picked up her scent she took off to tap noses and let her know it was time to go.

Stella took a few steps and then back to eating. By the time I was almost to her, she came walking my direction.

She wasn't thrilled but she headed back to the path with Sadie and I. It was great feeling the increase in heat. This week will be nice to be back in the upper 50s and low 60s.

If you take a look at the left side bar under the blogs I follow, I have added some new ones along with some I use to list a long time ago. After I do a little more reading on the list of new blogs I have, I might add a few more to the long list of blogs.

Usually with freezing weather my mind starts to wander. I start thinking of options, looking at trailers or RVs ... yet neither of them are the focus. The past few months when I think of traveling in a few years it's either in a Chevy Express van or a VW Westfalia Vanagon. I still favor tent camping.

I stopped reading books the past couple of weeks about as fast as I started last month. I went from reading books nonstop to none at all. It might not return to reading books until next winter during the times I don't spend a lot of time outside. Last week's warm weather showed me I'll be outside a lot this spring and summer.

Some random thoughts ... have I ever mentioned how much I hate flies? They're back.

Do the pictures look clearer the past 2-3 posts or is it just my own eyes and imagination?

A quiet Sunday here in 'the tropics' of southern Indiana today.

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