Friday, April 22, 2011

Spring Time means Garden Time!

Warm spring weather on any small farm / homestead involves lots of work. In addition to all the daily kennel stuff, we have a busy schedule. This past week we planted the garden, twelve 40' rows!, reworked the raised bed gardens, added duck eggs to the incubator, planted pampas grass along the drive, and started getting rid of all the unnecessary stuff around the barn and tractor shed.  The days are long because I want to get things done before it gets too hot.  While I hate the cold weather of  winter, the heat of a Louisiana summer drains my energy.  So, as long as it stays in the 80's I can work all day.  Soon the schedule will be 6 to 11 am work, 11 to 6 HIBERNATE in the A/C, 6 to 8 work outside again.

Precious, our blind puppy, loves the garden!  She just runs and runs in the wide open spaces.  Sometimes she tumbles over a row, but for the most part, she just loves to run along the edge of the garden in the grassy areas. She can't see the wire fence, so I have to alert her when she gets too close.  I am trying to teach her that the command "Careful" means you are about to bump into something.  I also have to teach her that my finger isn't a chew toy.  Tonight we were playing with a toy and unfortunately she drew blood when she chomped down on my index finger!  It was just normal puppy behavior, but it really hurt! 

Unfortunately the mosquitoes are really really bad this year.  I have been fogging the dog yard at dark to help keep the mosquitoes away but it is a losing battle.  The dogs really need to be sprayed with repellent, but some of them just freak out when I get the spray bottle.  I just wish they would understand that I am trying to help them!  Just a reminder to all those folks who think their inside dogs don't need heartworm protection - it only takes the bite of ONE infected mosquito to give your dog heartworms.  Protect your dog by giving it preventative meds monthly.    A recent conversation with my vet alerted me to a potential problem.  There seems to be some parasite resistance to Heartguard.  In years past, you could be a week or two late with dispensing Heartguard and it wasn't a problem.  However, there is some new data that indicates we should be on schedule every month.  Please mark your calendars and remember to give it to your dogs on time!  If you can't remember, then go for the new shot that gives protection for 6 months.  Not all dogs qualify  - old dogs or very young dogs should not get the shot.  Show your love by protecting them!

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