Puppy Alert!!!




                        Sprawled out on the cool kitchen tiles with the ceiling fan creating a heavenly breeze on my tummy sleep eludes me. My doggie blog is fast approaching, and I still haven’t decided on a topic. I got up to get a drink, patrolled the house, and then stationed myself between the oscillating floor fan and the overhead.

Tom, my favorite family member let me out while he fed and watered my equine charges. The horses get their breakfast around seven every morning. On our way back in Tom grumbled, “It’s going to be a hot one today, Bud. The thermometer is already 85°! You are going to have to stay at home today.” I usually ride with him when he runs to the feed store, or to get hay. Bank runs are fun too! I get doggie treats at both places. Though I love to ride in the truck with my face hanging out the window sucking in the wind, it’s really uncomfortable when we have to stop on hot summer days,


That is when it came to me! The subject for my first blog would be the heat wave from a dog’s point of view.  Most dogs want to be with their human family, and we hate the home alone thing. I would whine, beg, and look pathetic hoping to weaken their resolve to leave me behind. My last ditch effort is to run to the big window in the living room that faces the drive to show my most dejected and heartbroken face.

Now that I am older, I know that staying at home in the heat is my humans way of protecting me, but I still don’t like it. One of my doggie friends, Maxine, almost died from heatstroke while waiting in a car for her owner to finish grocery shopping. Maxine, like me, loved to ride in the car.  Puppy Alert! Leave us at home, if you really love us.


            Lucky me, I am a country dog, Most of the time my paws tread on cushy grass, or the soft sand in the horse work arena. I love to run with the horses when they are working. If I get overheated, I take a dip in the river. Where I used to live my paws got fried on the sidewalks on the way to the field at the end of our street were I was allowed to run. Puppy Alert! When you can fry an egg on the concrete or asphalt let us walk on the grass, whenever you can.


Mom chose a puppy picture of me for this blog.  I used to visit the farm when I was little, and came to live here when I was two. My coat is long, and I have a thick undercoat that is great insulation. It protects me from the cold of winter, but also from the hot summer sun. My thick undercoat also protects me from, mosquitoes, dear flies, and more! I am half Golden Retriever and half German Shepard; I am a pretty hairy guy.  My friend Beau is a Golden, and he can’t spend much time outside. He was body clipped for the summer, and if he were in the sun long he would get sunburned. Puppy Alert! If you use clippers to shorten a long coat, don’t leave your doggie friend in the sun longer that it takes to water the tires and fertilize a spot in the lawn!


            Wow! Mom just put some ice cubes in my water bowl. I think I’ll go have a cool drink, and then stakeout a good spot in front of a fan, where I can keep an eye on things.


Stay safe everyone, and drink lots of water. This heat can’t last forever. Stop by and visit with me next month.

Bye for now!



Surviving the Alarm Clock and a Stressed Out Canine!

By Jackie Anton

            Mid April showers have the windshield wipers going double time. Tom, my husband, was booked on an early flight to Orlando, and I had just dropped him off at the Akron-Canton Airport.  Now, I am stuck in rush hour traffic, doing the orange barrel polka around Akron. Traffic is crawling, so there is plenty of time for me to worry about filling in the gaps that his absence will leave for the next two weeks.

By the time I pull in the drive at home, I have decided that I can handle this extra load for two weeks. Before I am able to exit the truck, impatient stomping and whinnies echo from the barn. It is past time to turn the horses out, and they are making sure that I don’t forget about them.

After turning my equine charges out and making sure that the water trough is full, I fill the cat’s water bowl and head to the house.

Opening the back door makes my heart thump wildly.  Ninety pounds of hairy canine exuberance almost sits me on my posterior. Buddy makes a beeline to the truck searching for his beloved master. He sulks for the remainder of the day. He doesn’t chase the horses as usual, but sticks close to me while I clean the stalls.  Every once in a while he gives me a woeful doggy look, as if asking what I had done with Tom?

One day down, thirteen to go.  That is if all went as planned and our daughter-in-law delivered our second grandchild on schedule. Grandpa was there to drive Wilma to work. Our son was concerned about her driving the forty-five minutes each way to the University of Central Florida. He was on a project assignment, for Florida University, working in the opposite end of the State. Grandpa to the rescue! He would be driving her to and from work, picking up Connor, our first grandchild, from daycare and generally helping out.

I set the clock for five am.  Maybe, if I got an early enough start, I would be able to get everything done. Take a deep breath, think positive, I coached myself, “ Maybe you will catch a spectacular sunrise?”  Not a morning person, habitually I read or work on ads late at night.  Quietness of those hours, except for occasional snoring, croaking frogs, and chirping of crickets, allow me to concentrate much better. At least a decade has gone by since I have had to set an alarm clock.

Five in the morning, sure that a calamity had struck, I wake with a start. My heart rate spiking, I keep slapping at the infernal clock radio. Not able to find the proper button, out of frustration, I reach down and pull the electric plug. Great! Now, I am going to have to reset it. Vaguely, a distant memory rises out of the morning fog that I used to, in self-defense, wake up before the alarm could scare the tar out of me.   Buddy was standing in the doorway cocking his head and looking at me like I was demented. Or, it could be that he was only trying to figure out the alien noise?  Once the alarm was quieted, he let out an indignant yawn followed by an elaborate stretching routine.

Oh! Lord it is only the fourth day! Panting, I stop to catch my breath, after lugging the third trashcan to the end of the drive.  Glancing around and admiring the budding trees, I notice how much the grass has grown. In resignation, I reschedule my plans for the day to mow the lawn. Mowing our six acres, and zigzagging around the abundant trees, takes a minimum of four hours, if you don’t forget to check the gas and then run out at least two hundred feet from the outbuilding that houses the tractor fuel.  This was shaping up to be a lousy day, and I was not enjoying the bright sunshine and mild weather. A U.S. Postal delivery was made while I was struggling with the lawn tractor.  Waving to our friendly Post Lady, I groaned, and then let out a string of very colorful words that I would not dare repeat in front of my grandchild. I had completely forgotten about the mail, it had gone unchecked since the day before he left. Our rural box was stuffed. One more thing, like mowing, filling the trucks and the fuel cans for the tractors, and taking out the trash, that I never bothered with, Tom always did that too!

Day five is off to a better start. Now, I am counting!  Feeling proud of myself for beating the alarm, I turn from disengaging it, and end up on the floor tangled up with a big furry dog that thinks I have invented a wonderful new game.  Since Buddy is Tom’s dog, more aptly he is Buddy’s person. Most of the time I play second fiddle, but with my husband away for several days Bud has decided to attach himself to me. He usually sleeps next to Tom, and I had not been expecting him to be right beside my bed when I woke.  I figure that the dog being insecure is doing his best to make sure that I didn’t disappear, also. He is the proverbial lost puppy.

Local weathermen are calling for rain showers over the next several days. So, I decide to reseed the front paddock, and take advantage of the promised warm spell. The projected rain will take care of watering it, not adding to my list of things that need to be done.  I sigh, knowing that this is the optimal time to tackle the project, and went in search of my work gloves.  It took me all day, more than twice the time that it usually took the two of us. Other than caring for the animals, I worked on that paddock from dawn until dark.

Well, I made it through. My heart is still beating, despite nearly jumping out of my throat whenever I over slept and the earsplitting alarm jarred me from a sound sleep. In addition I did not break my neck falling over an anxiety filled canine. However, those life alert commercials are looking better all the time, and I will keep them in mind if I ever have to repeat the past two weeks.

The above story was an assay that I did for an English Composition class April of 2010. I thought it was a good way to introduce our beloved Buddy. I am working on his story, and will include some of his exploits here.  Backyard Horse Tales readers met Buddy in Sox’s tale. Look for Buddy’s Blog on the 30th of each month.

In the April Author Spotlight: Kelly Preston

Kelly and co-author Mr. MaGoo,  have written an engaging book on life and special needs. The young adult book is an easy cross over to the adult market. Read her interview. Don’t forget to vote for Real Dogs Don’t Whisper.

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