Thursday, April 28, 2011

Dog Doctor

Sara, age 6, who visits regularly and for long periods

I was out in the back yard a while ago, re-filling the pump with gas and admiring the dozens of croaking frogs that are floating spreadeagled on the surface of the dugout, when I noticed Sara had three porcupine quills stuck in her snout. I came in for scissors to cut the tips off, and then she patiently let me remove them.

I'd no sooner gotten back to work here at my desk than Everett asked me if Jenna had had those porcupine quills in her nose when I was out there. She hadn't. It seems the dogs are being uncharacteristically quiet while dealing with this particular beast. We called Lucky Ducky, the deerfaced chihuahua, into the porch (he has to be checked over for woodticks before he gets further into the house; he had two yesterday) for his own safety.

Jenna snapped at my fingers once when I brushed against her head, which made me a bit nervous about helping her, but I did manage to snip the quills and get one out. The bottom one is not budging; I need to find a pair of pliers and get a better grip.

Jenna, 8 years old

Water report:
Scott told me this morning that we have "a little bit of leeway now," should we get rain or something. "Just a little bit, though," he added, lest I breathe a sigh of relief. I'm not sure if he's had the pump at the lagoon running in the last few days (probably), but the one behind the house (which I hear through the closed window behind me, dammit— it drowns out the frogs. So far. When they really get going, they'll be louder) has been going steadily for a week or more during the day. Water is being pumped from the nearby dugout to a slough closer to the road, so that it can get away down the ditch and away from our yard. It will flow on down to the ravine (seen in yesterday's snapshot) and onward. Meanwhile, the sump pump in our basement is doing its job admirably; I hear it start up every half hour or so. There's some water on the concrete but I've seen the floor a lot worse down there. For a while last summer we used a dustpan to scoop up water that filled a five-gallon pail, twice a day.