In my previous post, I talked about going on a walk with Kathleen (who will be here for the next year or so, getting our Hearts Homes and Hands business going) around the ranch for a long time and getting no “exercise credit” for it on my watch. While annoying, there are darned good reasons we didn’t just trek briskly around the property. Plus the dogs got stinky.
It finally cooled off enough to go for a nice exploration of the woods, which is just not easy to do in the summer. The dogs were pretty thrilled at the prospect, and engaged all their sniffers.
I hadn’t had a chance to show Kathleen what’s in the woods (mainly a lot of cedar elm and coral berry), so she had fun discovering the little stream (or where it would be if it rained more), then as we moved on, we saw the gate to nowhere, and other bottomland landmarks.
The dogs got to interact with a few mama cows, but backed off pretty quickly when one of the big mamas lowered her giant pink head. Kathleen found a big snake, probably a corn snake, but it went into its hole before we could get the phones out.
While we climbed up and down, avoided cactus, and steered clear of the cattle, we stopped and started over and over. There is always something fun to see! We went all the way to the race, then came back up the other side of the woods. There we found the adolescent cows, who were much easier to herd. Vlassic and Carlton gamely kept them from approaching us too closely in their quest for cattle cubes. Also, these cattle know the dogs pretty well.
When we got to the tank/pond behind the house, the dogs were hot. So, they all decided to go swimming. They had great fun.
However, the banks are very deep mud mixed with poop from fish, turtles, eeping frogs (which Kathleen got to see and hear go “eep” when they jump in for the first time), and cattle. The dogs certainly did NOT end up “clean.”
But, they had so much fun. We couldn’t help but be charmed. I enjoyed introducing Kathleen to my favorite parts of the ranch, and she sure had fun. She found a couple of insects I missed, so I think she’s turning into a Master Naturalist prospect!