Ducky’s Natural Curiosity

Ducky is a trip. I love this dog. I love her silly goofiness, her boundless energy – even though it makes me feel exhausted at times – her curiosity about everything under the sun, moon and stars, just everything about her. Even her occasional exasperating reactions to people and noises.

Her natural curiosity, though, tends to get her into trouble with the bumblebees that have made their nests in several holes in our backyard. (I can’t remember a summer when the bees have been so prolific in the back yard. I wish they would go back to the front yard and stay there!) I do my best to get her to stay away from those holes; but I can’t watch her 24/7. She just seems drawn to those holes at times.

Well, early yesterday evening, she got into trouble again; but I didn’t realize it. I didn’t see any bees bothering her, didn’t see her anxiously snapping the air around her, or any of the other telltale signs. But when we came inside after her post-dinner yard time, she started in with the reverse sneezing and the obsessive carpet licking, and then wanted to go back outside where she ate more grass than a goat. After she got rid of that mess, she continued the obsessive carpet licking and that’s when it dawned on me.  Darn bees! I got out a Benadryl tablet, wrapped it in a piece of peanut butter-flavored pill pocket, and gave it to her. Within minutes, the reverse sneezing and the carpet licking stopped. Literally within minutes. Maybe the pill pocket soothed her throat? I don’t know. I can’t think of another logical reason. Surely the Benadryl didn’t start working THAT fast. (Note to self: next time Ducky starts the obsessive carpet licking, don’t wait. Just give her a Benadryl.)

This morning, my crazy-goofy girl was her calmer, happy self again. And again I had to steer her away from the one bees’-nest hole a few feet away from the oak tree. I brought her inside and gave her some breakfast, and when she finished it we went back outside. After running after a squirrel or two, and running the fence with her little buddy next door (a sweet little senior Shih-tzu girl), she decided to lay down in the grass and relax. Do you want to guess where she finally ended up after trying out several unsuitable spots in the shade? Yup. Right in between two of the four nest holes between the carport and the smaller utility building. Just to be on the safe side, I brought her back inside the house.

Ducky’s curiosity presents me with a conundrum. I don’t want her stung again, obviously. At the same time, I don’t want to harm the bees. The environment – all of nature – needs the bees to do what bees do (when they’re not being bothered by a crazy dog). I’ve tried training her to avoid the nest holes, but that curiosity of hers is her own worst enemy at times. I could block the nest holes, but the bees would just make new ones elsewhere in the yard. At least I know where they are right now. So for now, I’ll just make sure I have plenty of Benadryl in the house. And I’ll hope that next spring/summer, the bees will go back to making their nests out in the front yard instead.

 

So Much to Love…

It’s hard to believe that today is Ducky’s fourth Gotcha Day!  Time has flown by since our little demon joined the family!

Ducky is small compared to her older sisters, Shadow and Angel Callie, but there’s so much to love in this little package…

Her sweetness with the people and doggies she loves. She gives puppy kisses galore. And, according to her dog-daddy, to excess at times.


Her ability to keep Shadow young. Since Callie got her angel wings, Ducky has matured a lot and realized that Shadow is her best doggie friend as well as her sister. She still has her snarky moments over a toy or ball, but those moments continue to dwindle. They chase each other in the yard. (I have to get a video clip of that one of these days!) And they play in the house. 

She barks at anything and everything she hears or sees – when the spirit moves her. Some days she’ll bark at the breeze blowing or a tree branch falling on the roof. Other days she’ll just look up and then go back to her nap.

She barks at hubby when he first comes out of the bedroom in the morning. He gets grumpy over it – he’s definitely NOT a morning person – but I have to admit it’s kinda funny, even if it is annoying at times.

She runs the fence line on both sides with our neighbors’ dogs. There’s nothing aggressive in any of their body language. They’re just saying hello and getting some exercise running back and forth. When she’s had enough, she walks  away. 

She’s a fast learner. And even when I don’t reinforce her training for a while, she still remembers everything. (I just wish she would apply that to wearing the muzzle. That is a slow process.) 

She is still teaching me patience. Even though she’s not as hyper as she was four years ago, she does still have those moments. I don’t have my helper (Callie) here any more to show me how to deal with those moments, so I struggle at times. Especially when she’s being snarky with Shadow. Or blowing me off.

She makes us laugh. Every. Day. At least a hundred times a day. The way she stalks the squirrels. The way she paws and digs at the dog beds to get them “just so”. The way she barks at the dogs next door and then ignores them. The way she walks through a spider web on the porch and then paws at her face to get it off her nose. (I wish I’d gotten a video clip of that too!) But here’s a photo of her with a spider web on her head…