No farm blog would be complete without a description of the neighbors or their farm dogs. I was not sure what to expect. On the one hand, we are located in Connecticut, not far from Westport and maybe 30 minutes from Greenwich, home of multi-billion dollar hedge funds and private equity houses. On the other hand, we were in a rural environment and images of hillbillies making you “squeal like a pig” were hauntingly not far from my mind.
Having raised seeing eye dogs, I have always been a bit peeved when folks call their dogs “Rescue Dogs.” Rescue Dogs are dogs that rescue humans – like those human sniffing dogs that smell live humans after an earthquake or other natural disaster. The proper term for dogs that have been rescued are Rescued Dogs or Rescues. We have three small farm dogs that are all rescues. Our oldest is the newest member of our family – a Toy Yorkie named Mini. She’s the little thing on the right. She was given to us by a close friend of mine named Allen and HJ. Apparently HJ’s mom developed allergies to dogs and had to give her up. Our second eldest has been in our family the longest, named Bella – a Boston/Rat terrier with a severe and too cute underbite. You can see her in the middle of the photo. Iggy is a Maltese/Yorkie or a “Morkie” on the left of the photo. Being the only boy, I have dubbed him, “daddy’s boy,” and have dreams of him fetching my slippers and being able to grab a beer from the fridge. So far, we’re lucky that he poops outside. Okay, I can dream. . . .
Iggy is a runner. Whenever we take him for a walk around our property, if you even for a moment lose focus on Iggy, he’ll be gone across the street onto our neighbors yards. Our neighbors all have dogs, and Iggy, like daddy, is a playa’ and wants to play. He regards property lines like Genghis Khan did in Eastern Europe. Iggy was my method to meet my new neighbors.
Immediately adjacent to our property, lives Chris and Rich. They have three dogs, and are in a word – normal. Rich is a firefighter and committed to his family and Chris is a dog groomer. As Iggy ran about their yard, I spoke to this very nice couple about Easton. They had moved from a nearby city, Westport, and felt that they were moving out to the boonies – so she understood if this was a huge change from NYC City Slickers. Chris told a story about her first week here, she saw guys in camo carrying guns and she thought that there was an incident of some sort, before realizing that our land abuts some hunting land.
Sharing a love of farm dogs, Chris also warned us that a neighbor spotted a coyote or a wolf carrying another neighbors Maltese’ lifeless body in its mouth. She started rattling off the wonderful wildlife that lived in the area – bears, wolves, coyotes, foxes, eagles, hawks – all of which would take one of our farm dogs as an afternoon snack. She warned us not to leave our farm dogs unattended, especially at night. Apparently, in the pine trees between our property, live a family of giant owls 3 feet tall with 7 foot wingspans. I have always found owls a bit freaky, but giant owls scare me.
Iggy the runner likes to cross the street to visit the neighbors in front our house. Now this is a country road. There is not a lot of traffic, but the traffic that does come through drives very very fast – probably faster than a Morkie can react. The couple there is also very nice. Vicky likes to pick Iggy up and walk him to our house. Nice now, but after a dozen or so carries, I think it will get tired very fast. Note to self – our house came with an invisible fence. Maybe I should buy into those collars that keep our dogs (read: Iggy) on our property.