The week started as reported in my last posting with the arrival of Kira, the large, hairy, slobbery Newfie pup. She basically turned the world upside down here and everything has had to change.
THE CHICKENS STORY.
Her first day here and she caught Betty, our oldest chicken (4 and a half if your interested). I wasn't here but Sue reports that she caught her by her head and stood there with Betty's parsons nose and feet sticking out of her mouth. Not very dignified for poor old Betty. Anyway Sue ran through every command she could think of, drop, leave, down, NO etc until Betty was dropped. Angus was in hysterics (not the laughy ones) and there was grave concern for Betty as she lay there in a pile of feathers.
Sue put Kira in the house and returned expecting to have to finish off a mortally wounded Betty. But no, Betty was up dusting herself down and muttering as only a chicken can do when it's been peering at a set of tonsils whilst in a dog breath wind tunnel. She was soon tucking into some nice sweetcorn, seemingly uninjured. Tough old bird is Betty. As a result the chickens are now roosting high up in a tree every night and refuse to come down.
THE KITTENS STORY.
The kittens, Belle and Sebastian, disappeared for two days returning briefly to snatch some food, before disappearing again. It has since been discovered that they were sleeping in the shed. Slowly over the week they have become more and more used to Kira and she has stopped running at them to say hello, in the house anyway. They have touched noses now and the kittens have returned to the inside of the house. Outside, however, it is a different matter, they must be chased. I know she just wants to say hello but they don't take any chances. I don't suppose I would either. A forty foot high bear running at me? No I think I might just take cover to be on the safe side.
THE ALPACAS STORY.The alpacas are very interested in Kira apart from Judy who once again I really wish would just go away. Judy screeches whenever Kira comes into view and gets the whole herd worried. Kira is showing very little interest in the alpacas but Judy is simply not having any of it. I was feeding the herd a couple of days ago with the dogs nearby minding their own business when Judy decided she would charge them. Josh, became the target and damn near got trampled. I then intervened and chased Judy off with the customary volley of abuse going both ways.
Judy is not my favourite alpaca, make me an offer someone, I'm pretty damn sure I will accept it.
THE DOG's STORY.
Josh has welcomed Kira with open paws and they have become firm friends. He has however also suffered. Kira has lived outside for most of her life and is not house trained (no we did not know this beforehand). She has never been allowed the run of a house and has been shut in a cage when inside at night. We thought we would try to assimilate her without the use of a cage. The first, second and third nights Kira howled. Being a Newfie it is a long deep howl reminiscent of a mooing cow. Josh who has never been a howler decided to accompany her. We lay in bed immediately above the kitchen, ears bleeding, listening to Kira singing the hymn with Josh performing the descant. Took me right back to my choirboy days. Sleep? No.
Kira is also destructive. It would be foolhardy of me to attempt to write down the full list of 'things that have been Kira'd' in the short week that she has been here. Briefly, she has scratched and chewed the kitchen door, door frame and wall. She has emptied the bin several times. She has chewed lego, wellies, laptops and place mats. She has poohed and wee'd as if in training for the indoor defecation Olympics and has turned her water bowl over seemingly on the hour, every hour. In short we have never seen anything like it. She is the most gorgeous, beguiling and gentle creature but left unsupervised she turns into some sort of one dog destruction unit on a mission.
Take yesterday for instance. I returned to complete carnage after taking Angus swimming. I stood in the kitchen doorway thinking, mop? hoover? broom? dustpan? cloth? I literally did not know how to start the clean up operation.
After I had finished I installed a large dog cage in the kitchen. Kira spent the night in it last night and we didn't hear a peep. Sue and I, for the first time this week, slept like logs.