Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Two Donkeys And Their Proteges

I'll try not to mention the weather too much. Just let me say that the relative warmth of the last two days has given way to the usual deep freeze. It was nice while it lasted and Jack and I managed to soak up some sun. Jack was extremely pleased to be coatless.

Penny the dog was also coatless, a fact of which Jack took notice immediately. He has been "grooming" her green winter coat - he calls it that but it's really intensive licking. Yesterday he slid up beside her and began examing her real coat. He used his nose to massage her back and then decided her tail, which curls up over her back, needed straightening. He used his rubbery upper lip to pull it out to it's full length and seemed perplexed when it sprang back to it's original shape. He repeated the process for a few minutes before giving up, saying he'd get back to it later. The dog was initially and understandably rather sceptical but soon decided he was harmless enough.

On the Sally front, I'm pleased to say she is coming along splendidly. She has used the good weather to commute back and forth to the hay storage/run-in and is enjoying her expanded horizons. She is also developing a great need to play and is stalking bits of hay and shavings and even occasionally pouncing on her own tail, which she pretends is stalking HER. The woman is making her baler twine toys and has started importing bits of feline gymnastic equipment from the house. Today Sally was rolling around in a patch of sun in the barn aisle so I made my way over and offered her a midriff massage. She accepted. Then she sat up and rubbed her whiskers against mine and gently began to bat at said whiskers. I let her, of course. When I turned around the woman looked all sort of misty-eyed and said "Oh Sheaffer, you're such a good donkey!" Gave me quite a turn, I can tell you. I'm much better prepared for her hectoring/nagging persona.

It's worked out very nicely that Jack and I have different preferences on the companion animal front. If we both favoured either cats or dogs we might end up wearing off their fur. As it is, we each think the other is mistaken in their choice but politely accept that it's all a matter of taste and simply can't be explained. We all agree, however, that a barn is a much homier place with a cat in residence.


billie said...

I have known all along that the woman adores you, Sheaffer!

I'm glad to hear Sally is enjoying life so much in her new home.

We missed the snow, thank goodness, but are having 3 frigid nights and 2 cold days (for us, no 28 below in these parts!) but then it is to be in the 60s and 70 on Sunday.

I hope I'm smart enough to recall the wind and the cold of today when the flies come out on Sunday!

Buddy said...

Hay Sheaffer - mom wants to know what baler twine toys are and how can she make some. She has that stuff everywhere - in all different colors. Any chance you could share??

Sheaffer you are such a nice donkey - being nice to Sally - wish there was a video - I haven't been around cats before - well that I can remember - there are some in the neighborhood but they don't come into my paddock.

Stay warm my fren.

Dougie Donk said...

Oh, what good news about Sally & how amazing that she would let you that close. Our felines trot smartly off if you get any closer than about 3 feet away. I think this is due to Dennis the Menace, who gets rather over-excited & trots towards them rapidly, while waving his head in the air & snorting..... I suspect he has banged himself once too often when racing.LOL

The dogs just bark & show their teeth, so I treat them with an appropriate level of disdain. Tail straightening does sound fun though :)

ponymaid said...

Billie, I think the well of adoration is pretty well tapped out - she's back to Atilla the Hen today. The flies are expected on Sunday? Extraordinary. Ours won't be here for months - not that I miss them in the least.

Buddy, these are extremely rudimentary toys, owing to the woman's two left hands and lack of creativity. She takes a length of twine and scrunches it up very small and then uses another length to wrap it up tightly, leaving about two inches to form a tail. Sally uses her suspension of disbelief and pretends it is a mouse that needs tormenting. The woman also takes a length of twine and ties a series knots at the bottom so they form a solid mass; then she hangs up so Sally can leap up and pretend it's a bird. I went by the other day and tried to pull the damn thing and it recoiled and hit me in the eye!

Dougie, we sometimes suspect that Doc also has bumped his noggin once too often...Very wise of you to ignore the boorish behaviour on the part of the canines, though Jack says tail straightening is most therapeutic.