August 14, 2022

Watson's Frustrating Weekend

Well we have had some exciting days here in the "big city". I will get to the city news I am sure most of you heard or read about on the news, at the bottom of the post. On the home front Watson made me wonder why oh why did I decide to buy another bloodhound, especially one that was a puppy and still is at 16 months old at the end of this month. Let's just say he has had a very frustrating weekend ... or was it me that had the frustration???

He has been doing so good lately that I forgot that he was a puppy. Whether inside the house or outside while I was gone different days for different errands, he was the perfect puppy. Hard to say the word puppy with his size but he is still growing physically and mentally. Sadie and Stella both drove me insane at times with their destruction, so I have to remember it is just not him, it's part of the bloodhound breed and their powerful noses that get them in trouble and me screaming insanely at times.

Of course when I get home Saturday afternoon after being out in town a couple of hours, neither Henry nor Watson was claiming what had happen. By the evidence I couldn't rule out that Henry was the guilty party. Only Sunday morning I found out I was wrong and Watson proved to me, it was him ... he was the guilty one. I am glad my closest neighbor on that side of the house was not home, otherwise they would have witnessed me talking YELLING outloud to myself ... because who else would be ranting loudly to a couple of hounds and including the dog.  They would have to be yelling to themselves ??? Right ???

They were determined to show me ... it wasn't them ... it had to be Walter that did that. But what ??? I had not seen anything out of the ordinary ... YET !!!1

With the hard clay, the urine spots from the hounds (both taking supplements to prevent those), the winter and early spring floods in the backyard ... it has been a little hard to grow grass where it has been killed. It is especially hard when Watson is pulling it out the ground so he can bring it to the patio to eat. That is some fine grass right there and very valuable where I live. I have never had this much yard problems as I have had living here.

That is two different pieces he had found and brought up on the patio to chow down on. He was surprised that I caught him in the act before I started my "spur of the moment" Saturday morning project. 

Looking at aerial drone photos of the house and yard from a 2018 sales ad I found online, it shows this shaded corner along the side of the house crossing in front of the shed door, had hardly any grass. Even when I moved in most of it was bare clay. So I am not the only owner of this house that couldn't grow grass here. I am stubborn by nature and swear that I can grow grass here. I admit I was a little unsuccessful last spring when I had fenced off a larger area than I did on Saturday morning. I was able to grow the grass you see from the shed door out to the end of this fence but not along the side of the house.

So when I left Saturday around 1pm I was pretty proud of my new "spur of the moment" project I came up with. Why wait until September or early October to plant new grass seed when I could do it now. It's in the  shade right? It cannot be that hard. I know it can be done in August because at the end of the street a homeowner has had to install a mound out by the street for his new septic system ... his grass is growing with only rain water applied. I never see him watering the new seed.

Now since I always leave the patio door open, fence gate locked, so the dogs can go in and out of the house as they please while I am gone, I had not even thought of the worst case scenario when I pulled out of the driveway yesterday. Watson had been the perfect hound for over a month, maybe longer. No, I don't want to install one of those ugly doggie doors cutting through the house wall or installing it at the end of my patio door. I have seen both from friends and I don't like either option.

I get home and at 91° outside only Walter is in the computer room sleeping in the floor. The hounds????? Nowhere inside the house. When I step outside on the deck I see both of them in those photos above, out by the fence looking guilty as hell. I did not see what they had done until I turned right to go back into the house. To say I was in shock is an understatement. I "think" I yelled out some words that people don't like to hear in the format of a question and not particular to them but more to myself. I may have blacked out. Ha Ha

While I am walking around the fenced area asking myself questions over and over and over in a loud voice .... Walter comes sprinting outside to rescue those two hounds that MIGHT be in trouble. By the volume of my voice, the words coming out of my mouth, Walter was in the paranoid phase running all over the yard hyperventilating. He knows the hounds are in some deep trouble and no way to fix things before I get home. Walter knows something is wrong.

After my temper had calmed, my pulse rate descending to normal levels I came up with a plan .... get inside the fence, correct the mess then add two additional posts and solid rubber fencing across the patio down the side of the house. That will keep them out because it did when I used this same fence a few months ago around a much larger area. They must have gone over the chairs I had upside down, thinking that was enough of a blockade.

Now why the rubber fence and the rubber posts??? Where did that steel fence and posts go that I used last year before they put up the permanent fence????? Well after that job I returned the posts for a refund. I called a house building goodwill store to pick up the band new 50' rolls of steel fencing but they didn't come out as far as my house on the other side of the city. So I sat those three new rolls of metal fence out by the street on a Saturday morning, like all the neighbors do when they are giving free stuff away ... the fence was gone in 15 minutes. So that is where that steel fencing went.

By the time I go to bed Saturday night I am still "huffing and puffing" asking those same questions over and over only instead of outloud, inside my head, to the point that I can't get to sleep.

Now something about this photo. Yes it does look identical to my Saturday damage because I did NOT take any photos of the damage because I was too busy ranting outloud and could have never kept the phone steady enough to take photos. Remember I had not seen the damage when I took the photos of the guilty two hounds out by the fence.

Well those two damage photos were identical to Saturday's damage, ONLY I TOOK THEM SUNDAY MORNING !!!!!! Can you believe it????? I could not believe it ... I didn't yell, scream, cuss, or pace the backyard because I was in that much shock. I was numb in disbelief !!!!!

Only this time I know 100% who it was. While I was doing my normal morning routine of reading articles from Flipboard, having coffee and enjoying the sounds of the morning with open windows ... I failed to notice that Watson had woken up and left the room while Henry slept under my desk and Walter was snoring to high heaven. 

I needed my second cup of coffee anyway so I thought I'd get a cup plus check to see where Watson was. I wasn't expecting to see this but what I saw almost every morning the past week ... he would be sitting alone on the patio enjoying the early morning sounds.

Only today ... he was standing right by the fence looking guilty. The fence was intact so how did he get in and out of that area that was now dug up and what was he looking for ?????

Before I did the Sunday morning fix, what is in the photo was not my first idea. I was going to Lowes once it stopped raining and buy those same steel posts I had returned last summer, buy a roll of that metal fence with the 3x5" spaces plus I would add the steel anchors for the bottom of the fence. 

He had gone over the top of this end of the fence but how he got out I don't know how he did it. The fence was pushed inward but nothing was pushed in or at at the bottom of the fence anywhere. All the posts were not moved or bent over, everything looked normal.

I didn't want to spend more money on a steel temporary fence. So while texting with my friend, she suggested a raised flowerbed along the side of the house or a rock garden. She also has problems growing grass on hard clay north of Chicago but has a beautiful backyard where flowerbeds hide their flooding area and where the grass does not grow.

Two problems with that.

I tried that last summer only to have Watson eating the lava landscaping rocks. They pulled one out of his stomach the same time they were taking the Mexican blanket out of his blocked intestines. So any kind of rocks are out UNLESS I buy those that are too large to get into his mouth and too heavy to carry away.

I tried mulch along that side but as my neighbor told me, she saw all three, the hounds and the dog, digging up all that mulch and the plants I had planted so they could lay down in the cool dirt on a hot summer day. Even today Henry will lay in that corner of the yard next to the house AFTER he digs up the mulch to make his bed more comfortable.

So I decided to save money and try this one more time. Only this time I would set three patio chairs and that ugly gray chair I brought with me from Arizona and block each section that he might climb or fall over. Then at each post at the bottom I used strip ties to keep the fence tight at the bottom.

I wasn't taking the fence down again so I could get inside so I used my clean hosed off pooper scooper to pull out the damaged burlap, take the plastic anchors out, then lay the burlap back on top of the new grass seed that Scott's make for shaded areas, mixed in with their special type dirt to make grass grow faster and thicker.

As a test I shut the patio door and left the two hounds out in the yard for a short bike ride around the neighborhood and a few laps up and down the street that I live on. When I came home I snuck around to the fence gate to see what they were doing ... they were laying in the yard and my area of grass with chairs blocking the fence was still intact.

I will see what happens this week. I want to test them to get inside that fence again to see if I have to go to Plan B ... whatever that plan is.

The time I had this same fence in a bigger area just a few months ago, the wire temp fence before they put in the permanent fence and even that same permanent fence ... they have never tried digging under any fence. So Watson would have had to lean up on the fence and it flexed enough for him to step inside. Like I said before, I have no idea how Watson got out once he was in. I will update this week with any photos instead of yelling outloud to myself that any neighbors nearby can hear.

I think it was Thursday night around 6pm when I was sitting on the patio when I noticed my neighbor walk past her shed. She never walks anywhere in that backyard unless she is mowing it, so where was she going? She went to the first row of corn, pulled off a few ears of corn, put them in a bag and walked back to her house. Is that a field of sweet corn??? I am going to find out Monday.

As some of you heard on the news or read it online, some even texting me or emailing me asking what happened ... we had a huge explosion in the city last week that destroyed 11 houses, damaged 39 houses and killed three people. It is a few miles away from the house but I didn't hear anything nor did I feel the earth move. The videos showed a HUGE explosion. 

A neighbor in that neighborhood was interviewed on Friday, saying he had been smelling gas in the air for over a month. Did he call anyone?? The utility company said they were at the address of the explosion in 2018. My neighbor told me yesterday this isn't the first explosion like this as it happened a few years ago too.

The reason I show this map is because a week ago Friday on August 5th I passed that intersection of Columbia and the red lined street of the explosion, going west to Evansville Nut and Bolt. Five days later on Wednesday is when the explosion took place. Now the red circle is not accurate. that is not where the house was. Based on the address and google maps, the house that was leveled to the ground was the 5th house north of the Columbia St intersection. They closed that street that day and Apple Maps showed it in red as a street closure. I guess being at the right place at the right/wrong time, works both ways.

So I sit here about to finish this post in an air conditioned house with a tall glass of ice tea nearby. Walter is snoring loudly again pressed up against the closet door. Henry is under my desk blocking my feet, sound asleep and the partner in crime Watson is sleeping and snoring behind my chair.

All is good in "the tropics" of Southern Indiana.


  1. Those dogs are going to drive you crazy yet!!! I'm curious, what makes Henry's chest stick out like that? Is it muscle or fat or what? I know it is normal for a Bassett. What if he injures that? Would that be serious?

    1. That is his chest bone with muscle in front of it. I have never had a basset injury that but it probably would be serious if he did.

  2. What a challenge puppies are. Is it possible he was able to jump from your deck into the fenced off part? If he did, then how did he get out? Good luck.

    1. Saturday he probably just walked over the upside chairs. That might have been a possibility on Sunday, going in from the patio but still cannot figure out how he got out.