February 06. 2014, Thursday
It is cold here this morning at Big Creek. The sun is rising up in the east between the leafless trees just above the mountain top across the dirt road from our house. The sky is partly cloudy. Moose just returned from his morning constitutional and ate an entire bowl of cat food in the bathroom to the consternation of the cats. He also ate Brownie’s food on the front porch and gleaned the kitchen floor for tidbits left over from last night’s droppings. He is our organic vacuum cleaner and instant composer. Many people have battery operated robot vacuums to help clean their homes. Not us, we have Moose! Just before he came into the house he and J.D. managed to chase a couple of squirrels away from the bird feeder. He is having a big day so far this morning. I am never sure just where he goes on his morning wanderings but we have sightings reported by several of the people living fairly near us as he makes his morning rounds. He and J.D. wander to the adjacent houses (not that there are very many) where they stand in the yards and bark at the resident dogs through the windows. Needless to say the dogs bark back with their morning salutations. This I am sure irritates some of the local residents but this is after all “the country” and this is what dogs do in the country. Isn't that right? We rarely let the dogs out before seven in the morning so their rounds usually occur after that point in the morning. That would be “seven dark thirty” because of the late timing of the sun coming up above the hill across the road.
Moose continues to be one really hungry dog all the time. He has developed somewhat of a pot belly as Linda aptly noted last night while we were watching TV. She said, “Look what a gut Moose has gotten! We have to put him on a diet.” What he needs is more exercise. In more moderate weather he gets walked down the road for a mile or two most every day which exercises us as well as the dogs. In colder weather he has to exercise himself as we do not enjoy walking in the frequent frigid temperatures we have here at Big Creek.
This photo from last week proves that Moose and J.D. get great exercise when it snows. They don’t stop running until they are totally exhausted. After wild chases across the creek in the meadow and near disastrous collisions they return to the house freezing cold with ice and debris dripping from their coats. They settle down in front of the fireplace to rest up and warm themselves till the next foray into the yard or the next meal, whichever comes first.