I Am Shiba.

Dedicated to momentary thoughts and musings of A Shiba Inu.

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Death of a Squirrel

I take full responsibility although my involvement was limited.

As the snow melts (warning: Weather Service predicts another huge snow fall starting tonight), the squirrel population has been thriving nicely since the oak trees dropped the same number of acorns as the United States spends on the Iraqi War. These rodents are so bold these days, that they have actually moved in their George Foreman Grills,and have regular tailgating parties where 7-10 of them can be seen in the backyard at any one time. So while the squirrels revel in the abundance of food, I salivate at the thought of eventually catching one of them and enjoying a tasty treat.

In comes Mr. Hawk.

For the past two weeks, our backyard has been blessed with the presence of Mr. Hawk. Type is unknown as supposedly most have migrated out of our area but this one has been very interested in our overpopulated fuzzy rodent population, and periodically successful in picking off one or two. Normally he is sighted in the back yard, surveying possibilities and The People seem most pleased at his presence.

(For the Bird Watchers who read: He is of moderate size with a very nicely speckled brown chest. His most distinctive feature is his tail which has alternative black and white stripes. The Woman thinks that he might be a Broad Winged Hawk but if so, this one missed its memo to migrate.

http://www.birding.com/topbirds/784bwh.asp )

Yesterday, The Woman and I were finishing our morning constitutional. The fog was quite heavy, and it had been a fabulous walk. There were lots of new things to investigate as some new neighbors have moved in and lots of debris left over from the various storms that have plighted our area prior to the holidays.

As we approached the house, The Woman noticed that all the squirrels were not moving and she looked up, only to see our friend, Mr. Hawk in our front yard. I was made to sit and be quiet (I *hate* this) but The Woman wanted to watch. One of the squirrels did a quick movement in one of the trees, most likely because of my presence, and Mr. Hawk did not miss a beat. He flew from the tree, snatched the squirrel, and immediately flew off.

I cheered. It was a great display of Hunter Showmanship. And I feel no guilt as an accessory to this act of Nature. I remained leashed and my squirrel hunting skills are limited; I applaud those who live in the wild and lead a life of which I only fantasize.

I Am Shiba. Now, if I Could Just Get Some Wings.

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

And on the 8th Day, God Created the Shiba

And God said, after he realized his creation, that this is Good.

And then He created the Dyson Vacuum Cleaner in order to clean-up after the Shiba.

And this was also Good.

'Tis Christmas morning and here I enjoy my presents. I received a new ball to chase, a new stuffed toy to destroy (when The People are not looking), a new chew toy which is divine!, and my all-time favorite snack, beef jerky. Christmas Dinner was made up of chicken broth, boiled organs, with a dash of potatoes for a nice gravy like mixture to cover my food. Yes, this has been a very good day.

But I work hard for these gifts. This week I found myself at the High School showing impressionable children the essence of what is Shiba. The Woman lectured to the classes about "Pet Rights" and I was the visual aid of what is right about Pets. The boys wanted to talk about Pit Bulls and Michael Vick; the girls wanted to pet me and scratch my belly.

Chicks dig dogs with soft fuzzy fur.

But I also found myself unofficially providing pet therapy (I was not wearing my official jacket) to a number of children who upon seeing me who just had to run their fingers through my nice winter coat.

One child in particular, a child who can not see nor can he speak, sat with me for almost 20 minutes, just feeling my ears, my nose, my coat, my legs, my tail. And while he is mute, his smile expressed the 1000 words that his mind was painting. He experienced the Shiba without light for "
Everything has its wonders, even darkness and silence, and I learn, whatever state I may be in, therein to be content." (Helen Keller)

So while God, on the first day, created division of light and darkness, the Shiba can transcend beyond these physical realms and join the mental and the physical.

And this too, is good.

I Am Shiba. I Was Created in God's Fuzzy Image.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

The Rain In Spain Falls Mainly on the Plain

But here in Northeast, it snows everywhere!

Over the past two weeks, I have witnessed ice, sleet, snow, rain, cold winds, almost 60 degrees, and sunny weather. School has been delayed three times and closed for one day (which was very nice because The Woman took me to play in the snow and that was fun!) That Guy bought new snow shovels, and constantly steals my car since his car "has issues" when the weather turns bad. I can only assume that his car's "issues" are not the same "issues" that The Woman takes up with her doctor. Life is full of contradictions that way.

Taking my constitutionals on ice is very difficult; lifting one's leg and balancing on slippery sidewalks is not a laughing matter. Next time, I shall merely relieve myself on the living room couch rather than endure the snickers of amusement from my unintentional antics.

The nice thing about snow, however, is that everyone makes all these little pathways with very nice angles and corners that are perfect for decorating. Furthermore, I can see where other dogs have attempted to stake a claim in my territory and can easily rectify the manner accordingly. The bad thing about the snow right now is that it is taller than me, and I can not find a nice spot to . . . to . . . well, to politely put, do my other business. It's extremely frustrating for me because I am not a dog who merely just goes outside and does it. I must walk and look for the perfect spot, and damned if all the perfect spots are not covered right now! So I have left with no other options than the road, and I just feel so . . . exposed out there-- like everyone in the neighborhood is watching me. There is just no dignity during times of necessity.

But I still love chasing snowballs into deep piles of snow. I can play this game for 15 minutes before I want to go back inside, have a cup of chicken broth, and defrost next to the heater.

I Am Shiba. I Am A Northern Breed.

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Potatoes, Potatoes, and More Potatoes

My Dear Gentle Readers.

It has been a busy few weeks for the household, what with the first of several holidays, and a variety of good well cooked meals since, that time just seems to skip on by between breakfast and dinner (and my two walks in between!) I have been blessed with many potatoes in a variety of forms these last few weeks, and even this morning, I helped The Woman by finishing off a few remaining potatoes, leftover from a glorious meal of corned beef.

My winter coat has arrived and I look like the furry beast of which I should. When I visit The People, everyone comments now on the thickness of my fur. This is good. This morning on my constitutional, it was delightful in the below freezing weather to scamper about, checking on my squirrels, and maintaining the borders of my reign. Now I lie next to the heater and feel all the toasty goodness absorbing deep into my underlayers. I am not one who is inconvenienced by the cold.

My squirrel population is doing well, as today we prepare for our first real snowfall of the year. I counted as many squirrels as I have toes, and then some. Also dressed in furry goodness, they are still fun to chase because they are fatter and slower. I just wish that the leash was not so short.

I Am Shiba. More Potatoes Incoming as the Holidays Continue!