Friday, August 12, 2016

The Dog Days of Summer.......

Here in Ohio we have entered the 8th month of the year; the month I wish we would just skip.  I love that my Anglo Saxon ancestors called it; Weod Monath or better know as Weed Month.  It's the month when you know summer is over.  The yellow fuzz ball geese bobbing along on the river a few short months ago are eating everything in sight to gain the strength to start the journey south.  Butterflies are very busy; I have not seen one Monarch butterfly this summer.  Many swallowtails and admirals but no Monarchs, pay attention humans and put that bottle of RoundUp down.  The yellow jackets have turned evil and I usually need to duck and cover at least once while walking to the studio.  The cicadas, also known as space invaders, are singing madly this month. Spiders are on the move too.  There are so many spiders in the downstairs bathroom it feels more like an outhouse.  Every morning I scoop them into a cup and return them to the garden.   Too sum it up, stuff is moving. 

In lieu of the early summer drought and now torrential rains. In the heat and humidity the plants are waking up, although things are looking pretty stressed; hell, I look pretty stressed.  I have delayed firing glaze kilns as our night temps are almost 80 with very little breeze and humidity lingers and builds through the night to 90-100% by morning.  Not so great for computerized kilns, even with a fan blowing on the components.   

As for the true dog of August, Kirby. He is doing great!  We are still figuring out these thunderstorms and as they are hitting daily and we are figuring this out as fast as possible!  

Yesterday a storm hit out of nowhere and he decided to hide behind the buckets in the studio.  The pacing and panting started.  

He hates the crate.  It's akin to caging an angry bear. The ace bandage trick worked pretty well except he is a 90 pound guy and even the biggest ace bandage only works for a while before he wiggles out.  I read reviews on the Thundervest and thought that would be a good investment.  I remembered I had the life jacket from our other 90 pound pup, Zeus. Zeus loved his life jacket!  It's practically brand-new, has a handle on the back, and I can tighten it down pretty good to make Kirby feel snug.  Perfect!  I dug it out of the rubbermaid in the shed and let Kirby smell it and see what he thought.  Seemed ok.  

Well I thought he was relaxed...... the next storm hit about three hours later and it was packed with 50 mph winds, power outages, thunder, lightening and full on Ohio summer storm.  

I ran for the life jacket, the way the rain was coming down I thought I should get mine too! 
I strapped him and he stood frozen.  No pacing, lots of panting and stress but not the usual hiding under tiny chairs, knocking over pedestals and vibrating.  
I sat on the floor with him and tried to get him to sit down.  

Holy shit he couldn't sit down because I had velcro-ed his boy junk in the life jacket!  Sorry buddy and ripped the vest off.  He stopped walking on his tip toes and took a breath.  

Made it through that one and got ready for another round of storms coming in.  I gave him 30 milligrams of melatonin (thank you Brenda!!)  It took about 30 minutes to kick in.  The first lightening bolt hit about 20 minutes in.  So I carefully put the life vest on him, avoiding the boy junk and it helped! 

Still hiding but finally found a safe place and laid down, somewhat weathering the storm.

I'm not getting too much done as we figure this out but it's August and it's the dog days and I have spiders to wrangle and glaze calculations to revise...... 

Hurry up September........ 


  1. I live for these blogs! Like the video. SO wish I was there to weed. I have nothing to weed. Maybe next year I can make a plan to be around weed season for a few days. xoxoxox, Betts


  2. My Clancey had trouble with storms. Gave her a tranquilizer and put her in her big dog crate. After awhile she went into her crate and didn't need the tranquilizer anymore .But she wasn't blind. I hope your critter figures out his safe place soon.

  3. Hey Betsy! Trying to be grape and not the raisin this summer :) This has been the strangest year, never felt like I got my feet under me in the garden. The best part of the garden gig........ I get to do it again next summer :) If the heat doesn't let up there won't be much canning done this year but will be popping stuff in the freezer! Contemplating a hoop house for cold weather goodies too. XO! s.

  4. Hi Wendy!! Each storm is a little better........ it's just going to take time. Boy these storms have been wild up here but looks like the you guys are getting pounded too! Keep you're powder dry! :)

  5. Catherine #alteredclayAugust 12, 2016 at 5:13 PM

    So funny!!!! I'm in a hotel room and laughing out loud so I hope I didn't disturb anyone. Gosh, I wish I COULD weed...we have too many snakes around ..poisonous and friendly but still I can't be doing 'show me the shape of your head' thing. Last year almost stepped on a six foot 4-5 inch diameter black snake one night walking out onto the back porch. The year before that, there was a snake on TOP of the transom glass above the front door. So needless to say, I get a whip lash every time I open my door looking up down on top and all around. The only thing I liked about our Alaska deployment No Snakes!, Hi to Kirby. So glad he is safe at your home.

  6. Oh squirmies Catherine!! I spent 3 years in the middle of nowhere Louisiana and there were snakes galore! We were parked in on 650 acres in the middle of St. Francisville running a kids camp. We had copperheads and water moccasins more than I care to remember! Loved those king snakes though! And blue tailed skinks! How many times I'd reach in a tent bag and have one run up my arm...... argh! Don't miss it a bit!

    Alaska!! Where? Daughter #1 in is Anchorage teaching! Enjoy, it sure is beautiful up there!!

  7. My dog was so scared of storms, but if the door was the least bit opened he would run away, never could figure out why he would run into the thing he was afraid of! I got a call from the local vet one afternoon, someone had picked him up in a pouring rain on the hwy and took him to the vet. They knew him.....
    you picked a really great dog, just look at that face.....

  8. Tracey! I had him out last night for his last hoorah and the rain started ..... Took me a pocket of peanut butter treats to get him back to the house! I think he would run if he could see. They asked me if I wanted to micro chip him and I said, No. After living with him for three weeks we are going back for the chip!

    Ha! The face got me to load him in the truck and bring him home 😊 He's such a sweetie!

  9. Sounds to me like progress is being made. The problem is you'll just get him thru storm season and snow season will be upon you :) .... and a new adventure will begin. And our Dash lives up to his name ... open a gate or door, without minding him, and he is gone ... any time ... it's how they ended up in shelter care ... he dashed, Lily followed (they are a bonded pair ... that's a whole other story :)) .... do get the microchip 😉

  10. Hahahaha poor Kirby , he might be blind but he knows when his junk is in a bind !! Glad he's found his safe spot xx

  11. Hey Brenda, just in from our morning walk and gotta say we are both living large for Fall and Winter! Bring on the snow machine! Dash, what a perfect name! LOL! There were quite a few Dash's at the APL. I spent so much time running down the last dog that I am loving this guy who never leaves my side. Thinking I need a bright orange tee shirt....... "Don't feed or touch the human; she's working!"

    I can still see a smaller dog coming to bond with Kirby one of these days :)

  12. Hi Adrianna! I still can't believe I velcroed up his boy parts and wondered why he was walking on his tip toes!! Ahhhhhh....... the joys of pets and parts :)