Ohiofarmgirl's Adventures in The Good Land is largely a fish out of water tale about how I eventually found my footing on a small farm in an Amish town. We are a mostly organic, somewhat self sufficient, sustainable farm in Ohio. There's action and adventure and I'll always tell you the truth about farming.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Garden Dogs....or what smart dogs do in the garden.

Every single day I'm glad I have smart dogs. Sometimes I see dopey or goofy dogs and I think, "Thank heavens I have smart dogs." Unfortunately that sometimes comes with a price.

 Kai thinks this is the best game ever.

Not only do I need to make sure that the dogs get their wiggles out all day by running them around... but I also have to make sure that they have plenty of mental stimulation. Bored big, smart dogs can be extremely destructive so I like to point them in the direction of adventure and let them figure things out.

Zander is blowing his coat - we are calling him Shaggy Dog.

So they usually work in the garden with me in the morning. Why? Because there are plenty of reasons for them to dig and sniff around. They usually make their own fun. Also, Kai is a stone cold Mole Killer so they actually do a lot of good.

But sometimes they dig in the wrong spot or sit on my pepper plants so we have a command just for the garden. It's "Get out of my dirt!" They all know what it means. They can sit on the grass - not in my dirt. Mostly it works out. If they dig in the wrong spot I tell them "No! Here.. come here! *points* What do you see?" And then they investigate the new spot.

This kept them busy for a good long time.

The other day while I was weeding in the upper garden I heard weird noises so I turned around to see Zander and Kai trying to get something out of a hollow fence post. I'm guessing there was a mouse inside of it and they were both on one end trying to get it. This went on for a long time. They even dug impressive holes in the dirt on their own side. Occasionally I'd hear huffing noises as they tried to sniff out their prey.

I let them go at it for a good long time. The digging was physically tiring for them and trying to figure out how to get the mouse out of the post was keeping them engaged. It was the perfect activity for them.

However, I dropped the camera and starting running and yelling "No! no no no!" When Kai started chewing on the end of the metal fence post. We do NOT need another jaw dropping vet bill for expensive dental work.

We are about ready to run right out there this morning. Today who knows? More mole hunting? Maybe they will get that rabbit? Or maybe they will just glare at the neighbors dogs. Anything could happen.

Happy Wednesday everyone! Are you exhausting your dogs? Do they work with you in the garden? Did they catch that mouse?


Heavens Door Acres said...

A working dog is a happy dog. mouse/mole hunting is a great activity as long as that critter is NOT under one of your garden plants. LOL

Unknown said...

Pretty funny! I gave my dog a digging zone at our last house, she loved it!

longtime wife said...

I have three Australian Shepherds. One is an old girl who just lazes around all day, pretty much blind, but still barks her fool head off if danger approaches lol.
My other two one is old girls son, he is 10 and I rescued an aussie of questionable heritage lol. I have sworn I will never get a "dumb" dog again, what aussies have is biddability , they so badly want to please. All mine accompany me where ever I am in or out of the house lol, they are very very velcro.
I love my Aussies!!

PJ said...

Our dog Kasea is just as smart and better behaved than most people I know. Last year he found a mouse under a bale of straw in the garden. After taking care of that problem he decided it is his job to keep all mice and other rodents out of the garden. He patrols every chance he gets and checks every place a mouse could possibly be. He never forgot the one time there was a mouse and he won't rest until the garden is safe.

IanH said...

Smart dogs stay out of my garden! The garden hose is primed and ready for action!

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