Chaos on Twenty Seventh Street

As you know I’ve been limping around the house, and Memphis has recently had surgery so she’s limping around the house. Was that enough chaos for one spring? We decided to have a few rooms of the house painted, to freshen everything up for spring. This included our bookshelves. We have a lot of bookshelves – and that means we have books all over the house.

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One thing we had not considered is the natural law that says Newfoundland dogs have a magnetic attraction to wet paint, especially Newfoundland dogs named George.

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We hired Mike the Painter to do the painting. Mike does a great job at fair prices. He can also handle just about any other wacky job that comes along.

“Hey Mike, we need a temporary ramp where the deck stairs are.”
“A ramp?”
“Yes, for Memphis, while she’s recovering so she doesn’t have to do stairs. It has to be long enough to lessen the angle, sturdy enough to support dogs and humans, covered with outdoor carpet so she doesn’t slip, and of course inexpensive enough that we can afford to do it.”
“OK, no problem.”
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Now it’s easy for Memphis to get out to the back yard without the difficulty of stairs. She can handle the ramp no problem at all.

Speaking of ramps, pretty soon my little ramps crop in the forested area of the back yard will be appearing. For those who have never had them, ramps are also known as wild leeks. They look like smallish tulips and smell strongly of onion – and they have a strong delicious flavour. I used to gather ramps in a forest not far from the city that has been seriously encroached by a housing development. When they started the development in motion I brought home a shopping bag full of ramps along with the soil they grew in and planted them out back. I’ve just been ignoring them since, letting them slowly spread. Let me say they spread very slowly. This is why, if you have a ramps spot in a forest you should only take a little each season, enough for a couple meals. It doesn’t take long for a ramps patch to get depleted when they are dug out faster than they can spread.

I know some other forests where I can find some ramps, and most years I bring some home while I’m out after morels. This year with my broken ankle there will be no spring foraging for me, so I plan to harvest the first meal of ramps from the back garden. My brother has suggested I fertilize my little ramps patch to encourage them to spread. I hadn’t thought of that because of course nobody fertilizes the forests where I usually find them. However, it ought to work so I think I’ll try it this spring.

Meanwhile, Memphis is recovering well. When we can’t watch her, she has to wear an Elizabethan collar so she doesn’t pick at the staples in her incision, and that is clumsy for a large dog, but she is tolerating it. She hates (HATES) taking her medication. For a while I was successful burying pills in toast but now she’s hip to that and she’s very suspicious. We’re managing but pill time is a trial around here. She has another several days of antibiotics and a few more pain pills as well. On the positive front, she’s limping around with confidence and she seems to be comfortable. I’m hoping that later in the summer both Memphis and I will be able to wander about in a forest looking for summer mushrooms (I look, she wanders). George of course loves that too!

Memphis Update

Memphis is doing well. She can get up and walk around some and she seems comfortable. This morning her bandage came off – and that means it’s time for the Elizabethan collar for a while so she doesn’t lick the incision. Memphis is not impressed but is tolerating it.

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She is not happy about taking medication either. We can get a pill or two down with treats but then she twigs to the pill and refuses the treats. Last evening I was pilling her directly. She’s demonstrated an excellent ability to avoid swallowing so she can spit the pill out later. This morning I resorted to a secret weapon – buttered toast. She’ll eat anything if it comes with buttered toast.

She appreciated a little brushing this morning, especially under her chin and on her neck, her favourite spots.

A visit from Vibe and Salvelinas

Yesterday my brother the trout, Salvelinas Fontinalis, came by for the afternoon, along with his lovely border collie Vibe.IMG_3406IMG_3404

“Vibe doesn’t go up on furniture”, says Salvelinas, proudly. Hmmm. I suppose that is sort of true. Vibe goes up on the humans that are on the furniture. Vibe is the sweetest dog. He is very gently and just loves getting pats from everyone he can.

In the car… #dog-a-rama

Georgie and Memphis love going anywhere in the car. All I have to say is “the car” and they’re up and ready to go.  It was a beautiful crisp morning so I loaded up the partners and headed to Jack Darling Park.

Memphis and George at Jack Darling Park
Memphis and George at Jack Darling Park

There are closer dog parks. We can easily walk to the one at the R.L. Clark Filtration Plant, and there’s one at Marie Curtis just west of us as well. To the east there is an excellent park at Humber Bay too. Jack Darling is special though. It’s huge, designed as part of the filtration plant renovation (which took years to complete), and offers a remarkable variety of terrain. We drive west, through Long Branch, Lakeview and Port Credit. Jack Darling is located just west of Lorne Park, south of Lakeshore.

Conditions were great. The snow was packed down and walking was easy. There were all kinds of dogs to play with, big and small. The dogs had a great time and I did too. Now they’re hunkered down for a late morning nap.

Happy Birthday Memphis

Our lovely Landseer Memphis turns 6 today.

Memphis 2015
Memphis 2015
The mischievous pup
The mischievous pup
She's always loved the water
She’s always loved the water
with her pal Jacques
with her pal Jacques
Goofing around with Max
Goofing around with Max

Snowing all day

It’s been snowing all day around 27th Street. The roads are pretty bad. I had a close call driving on the Queensway, even though I have snow tires on my Forester. I touched my breaks and I guess there was a patch of ice under the snow. Fortunately there was no traffic, as I did 3/4 of a spin, came to a stop, repositioned, and continued on my way.

The partners of course love the snow. Here’s a very brief video of Memphis and Georgie goofing around…

Good Morning Long Branch – Fresh dog biscuits going in the oven 7:30 am

George watching the dog biscuitsThe only thing blocking me from popping these oatmeal, bacon, peanut butter and parmesean dog biscuits into the oven is 145lbs of George!  Good Morning from 27th Street!

George’s Posse

 

Georgie's ToysWhen you’re a pup  – it’s important to have some indoor friends.  G’s current posse is shown here.  The little pink shoe is a Georgie special – found and retrieved by him last summer – miraculously not chewed to bits.The Pink Shoe