My Profile

I am Sandra - faithful steward. listener. shepherd. dream believer. hard worker. collects brass bells, boots. Jesus follower. contented. star gazer. homemaker. farmer. prayer warrior. country woman. reader. traveler. writer. homebody. living life large.

Friday, January 13, 2012

A Dog's Life, All Six of 'Em!

~ waiting for breakfast ~
We're having Ole Man Winter visit the farm today; wind chills are around zero, temps are around 10 above F and the sun is playing hide and seek...mainly hide. We've been to the barn to count noses, feed animals, check water and now it's after lunch, time to do...well, what needs to be done is yet more paperwork dealing with Dave's death. However, I am so weary of paperwork; 'deed, what I'd really like is to run away from home if only for a night or two. Just to get a different perspective, to blow the cobwebs out, to have a meal food that's more than a handful of nuts or jellybeans or, for breakfast, Grapenuts cereal. It seems I can't get away from nuts -smile-. 
~ no sweater for Jake B. Goode ~
It takes me a while to get everyone ready for the barn trek. The dogs all have sweaters and I have layers; by the time I get their sweaters on them, I've worked up a sweat, both from the exertion and from continually saying, "Stand still; wait a minute, stop that, move please!" Everyone is excited, they know what's coming and it makes them happy. All that is, save Jake, my Prodigal Son Border Collie, who is too dogly to wear a sweater. I think. At least, I've never tried putting a sweater on him. Jake has been coming here for around a year a while, can't really remember, and now that it's harsh winter, Jakes sleeps inside but still deigns to go to the barn for chores. He needs to keep an eye on the sheep and horses, you see. Jake is a Rambling Man and as a matter of fact, he and the Blue Heeler bitch on the farm behind us, just had a litter of puppies. As soon as I'm able to get off the farm, I'm going to buy a huge bag of dog food to contribute to their table. The folks who own the proud Mom hardly have two pennies to rub together so a bag of dog food will help Mom and puppies alike. BTW, anyone want a beautiful working dog? Those puppies are likely to have more brains than you and I put together and as both parents are beautiful, the puppies are button cute as well. Photos asap.
I'd ask Dave, "want me to take Jake to the animal shelter?" and Dave would always say, "no, but dadgummit! I hate having a dog that's smarter than me!" Jake comes and goes, as he wills and as always, and we're growing accustomed to each other's ways. 
~ Abigail Von Rotten the Terrier and Sadie Hawkins ~
Abbie has been here since May 1997 but only God knows her beginnings or her age but we do know she's a rough coat Jack Russell. She was an adult when we found her and, even though aged, she's still got a heart the size of Montana. Her eyes are dimmed, her hearing almost gone and she requires two sweaters when the weather is harsh yet she refuses to stay behind. I know the feeling; I'd rather die with my boots on than watching television and, God willing, when it's my time, I'll go with my boots on, doing what I love, chores on this farm. 
Sadie, aka Sada Hawkins, is from Keniba Ridgebacks and almost three; she's the only one we actually know their birth date. She's still puppyish and that's because I've allowed her to grow at her own pace and rate. Sadie, as are all Ridgebacks, is a chow hound and a counter surfer; if it's food, it's not safe. I cannot begin to tell you how many pounds of butter and bacon, glasses of milk, roasts, mashed potatoes, etc. she's consumed over the years. If it's not in the oven or placed high, it's not safe; she'll eat it. I know for a fact she burnt her tongue when she ate shortbread right from the hot pan! I was sure the shortbread was safe as it sat cooling for ten minutes but nope; Sadie said, "gosh it was hot but good!" Bad girl but it was my fault so no, she wasn't punished beyond my lot and loudly. By the by, Keniba has a litter of puppies in February and if you're able to get on their buy list, more hurrah for you. Edith, Keniba's breeder, has Excellent Quality Ridges and I unreservedly recommend her. Yes, you can get less expensive Ridgebacks but as Dave always said, "Pay now or pay later, probably triple." It's always much better to put your money on the table in the beginning and get a quality companion animal, one who is deemed free of disease and health problems. Later on, it's not only financially expensive but it's heart breaking to deal with a friend who is sickly and in poor health so don't do it; buy quality and save yourself heartbreak. But, please, please...someone head slap me...I CAN NOT GET ANOTHER DOG...either a Ridge or one of Jake's puppies. Please help me say "NO"! 
Dave used to tell me the Drudge Report would, eventually, say, "Cove couple has 57 dogs!" I'd look at him and reply, "you say that like it's a bad thing!" 
~ Sophie Lauren Butterball ~
My little fat girl still hasn't lost weight but that's not her fault. Her dang human, me, gives treats in the morning and feeds at night. I have cut back on the treats so, maybe, she'll start losing a pound or four. Sophie came here the week after Dave was buried; her human Pa had cancer and died leaving her human Ma in dire straits.  Dave and I'd discussed bringing Sophie to live with us and just because Dave died, I saw no reason to reverse my offer. Soph is a broken coat brown and white Jack Russell and thinks she owns the place; between she and Abbie, they're probably right.
~ Sam P. Spade, Secret Agent ~
Sam still hasn't told us what the P. stands for but that's okay; a man of mystery is always welcome. One first Sunday in June, while on the way to church, Dave and I found Sam. He was just a little thing and had, probably, been thrown out with his litter. He was the only one we found so we turned around, brought him home and put him in the kennel with fresh water and food. sigh. Dave and I being humans, are slow so it took us two weeks to get it through out thick skulls Sam was meant to live here, on the farm, and we would be his humans. It's been a good arrangement and all are happy with this little Basket Hound, aka Basset Hound, Spaniel, Terrier mix. 
~ Grandma Grace and Miss Kitty ~
Gracie is the oldest dog, we're guessing around seventeen but, again, only God knows. She was wandering around on the side of the road when she was, easily, persuaded to live on the farm. Her bones are old, she's slow and dim of sight but is yet able to dance for a treat. Grace is an Australian Shepherd Corgi mix and loves to herd me. If I'm not moving quickly enough or in the "right" direction, Grace will take a little nip at my heels to hurry me along. Alas, Miss Kitty has gone on before and she and Dave are saving me a place. 
I've not even gone into detail on the rescued horse or sheep; that's for another entry. I do know I need to get to the grocery store, if I'm going; there's sure to be black ice on the road so I need to go and come during daylight hours. 
So, tell me...who have you rescued lately? Who owes their life to your being willing to extend a hand?

Blessings ~ Abigail ~ Grace ~ Sadie ~ Sam ~ Jake ~ Sophie ~ and all those gone before and to come after, God bless us, everyone! ~


  1. Hello Sandra:
    We have so enjoyed being introduced to your canine community at Thistle Cove. They certainly make a varied and interesting bunch and look so very stylish in their sweaters. We wondered if the sweater designs were matched to their personalities, the dogs certainly wear them with poise.

    When we had cats they all came from the Cat protection League and we always felt that they made such marvellously loyal companions. It was as if they were saying thanks for rescuing them and giving them a good home. We are sure that your dogs feel the same.

    In spite of the difficulties that your cold weather must bring for you on the farm, it does make everywhere look absolutely magical. What a heavenly landscape you live amongst.

    Wishing you a joyous, healthy and prosperous New Year!!

  2. Your home is like my home :)
    I am fostering two kittens right now.
    Ozzie and Harriet!! Looking for a good home for the two to go together!
    I won't let them be separated! They were the only two out of six. All the others were stillborn...God bless J, he buried the little ones in our little pet place out behind the smoke-house :)
    We couldn't live without our critters, could we, Sandra?!
    love to you and all the kids :)
    xo, misha

  3. Hmmm.My verification word was...

    Tater boob!LOL!!!!

  4. I just loved hearing about all your sweet pups...

    Have a lovely day!

  5. Anonymous3:55 PM EST

    I so enjoy reading about your pups and the pics are cute as can be. I only had one cat when I was a kid, but now we have 3 and of course, mama's little dog. Two of the cats were thrown out at our last home and somehow made it to our doorstep. We love them dearly and they give us such joy and laughter. Our Vet called us yesterday to say they had a tiny kitten they had rescued that was available. I dare not even ride by their office!!!
    God bless you this evening. Stay warm and know that you are loved, Sandra.
    p.s. my word verification was lions!

  6. My eight-year-old got a kick out of your pics of your dogs decked out in their sweaters! So cute! We have a strong-willed, smart border collie too! But she's a real sweetheart too!

  7. "BTW, anyone want a beautiful working dog?"
    YES!YES!YES!!! We would like :o))!
    (I am sure Mira would be VERY happy to have a puppy and so am I :o)!!!)
    So lovely photos!!! Thank you!!!

  8. oh to be a dog on thistle cove farm!!!! we are city folks and are allowed to have only 2. our choc. lab we got from a rescue place 3 yrs ago and a mangie old poodle mix we rescued a few months ago with his head split open and pretty rotten teeth. he's old and probably won't live long but he will have a good home with us until his dying day. i can't let my dogs see your blog or they will want us to fly them across the country to live with your dogs!

  9. We rescued a family of 5 this summer/fall plus their dog and cat for 4.5 months after they lost their home to foreclosure and he lost his job the same week. Now we are being rescued by my husbands cousin as our home was foreclosed on 9 days before Christmas. we are, with our 3 cats and doofus Golden Retriever looking for a cheap place to live.'s a good thing, I think.

  10. Hello Sandra!

    I'm finally back to blogging after a long hiatus mostly due to school work. I've missed these visits to the farm :).

    What a lovely snapshot of your farm. The doggies look lovely in their sweaters. They are all very cute (even Jake in all his manliness ... not needing a sweater in all that snow. Sheesh!)

    Sending warm thoughts your way!

  11. I hope you got out and back before the black ice got bad. I don't like that stuff! I thoroughly enjoyed photos and introductions to your doggie friends. I lost track of the number, but they all look like fun fella's. Your description of the one as being too "dogly" to need a sweater had me chuckling. I firmly believe that if a word is not available, one should just make one up that will serve the purpose. :-) I miss having pets. On our last move, our pets could not come with. If things were different now, I would surely be at the shelter ready to adopt a couple or three friends.

  12. I'm sorry to say that we've been more on the receiving end than the rescuing end, lately. Wish it were the other way around. Your animals look lovely and loved. Enjoy your barn chores! It's good to keep active, and to have "folks" to tend to -- looks like you've got lots! I loved reading this post.

  13. Rescued pets are the BEST pets. I believe that your pets choose us when we are in a place to accept them ... here' rescues are all that keep us company ... three cats and (currently) one dog. One day, soon I hope, another dog will choose us to be his/her family. I can wait patiently till then.

  14. We rescued Sophie our cat back in July. She was year and a half and had had a little of kittens already. Tom liked her because she was young with some spunk. She's got spunk alright! I think she was probably abused a bit in her old home. She scratches a lot...but in the last month, if I say no, she'll stop. It's taken her so long to feel comfortable...but she's come a long way. I think she'll mellow over time.
    We love her, despite her claws!

  15. I recently brought home 2 kittens Penny's neighborhood kitty had at her house. Elijah and Sophie are blessing me. Sometimes we just need the company and distraction that these furbabies bring us.

  16. I loved reading this post. I'm an animal lover. I enjoyed seeing all the dogs in their sweaters. My Great Dane used to wear sweaters- mine!We, too, have lots of rescues here. It does my heart good to see how many animals you've given a home.

    Jake is adorable. I highly recommend a DVD series called Mist the Sheep Dog. It was made in the UK and our family loves them. It's about a Border Collie named Mist and the other Border Collies she lives with on a working sheep farm. It was made for children, but I'm sure I enjoy it every bit as much as my kids.

  17. I love Sam's nose! They are all so cute and fun looking. My students want me to have a puppy, but I think I'm okay reading about and patting other peoples' dogs.

  18. I love all the names of your various pack members! Our Dozer is a rescue who filled the bulldog-sized hole in my heart (long story). But Jackson has become my new "heart-dog." One of our horses is a rescue, and two of our hens.

  19. What fun to hear about each of your dogs and their unique personalities. I am sure they have been an extra special blessing since Dave's passing. You are in my prayers.
    Pam at

  20. we laughed and loved this sweet post!

    Aloha from Waikiki
    Comfort Spiral

    > < } } ( ° >

  21. Oh my goodness, I know for sure you and our youngest son's wife must be related ! Our youngest son told us years ago he would put his foot down and say "no more animals" and then his wife would cry for the poor critters.Our son could not take the tears, and they have a pack of dogs, 2 of them Jack Russells.Good for us she is also kindhearted to family and helping our oldest son ,( a single father raising 4 little girls )care for his daughters.

    God has placed you tender-hearted people to fill in for the many who walk on by such need.How blessed the "found" animals are, how blessed Dave was, how blessed you are.My prayers are for you now because I think you are not feeling so blessed. I hope you get some sleep and some heart rest.

  22. Oh, Sandra -- I'm about 1 cat away from being the crazy cat lady. Fortunately all but two of the nine are outside kitties and we do need them to keep the mouse population down. At least, that's what I keep telling myself. They are all fixed now, so no more kitties -- at least, not because of being an responsible pet owner! :)

  23. Waht a great family you have. Do you make the sweaters yourself? I was thinking of boots but that would take way too much of your time and our little dog didn't like them. We have no pets at the moment but lots of grandkids to keep us busy right now. Maybe when we retire.

  24. Sweet dogs. There's so much love there. Don't forget to take care of yourself, too.

  25. Love your herd of dogs! The sweaters are adorable too. Mine won't move when I put their clothes on. I gave up.

  26. Oh ho! Now I know why I like you so much LOL Another animal hoarder (pretend there is a line through that word) enthusiast LOLOLOL I love your description of Sadie - a counter surfer oh my gosh you made me laugh. We've had many dogs although not as tall as Sadie, that were counter surfers. One rescue ate a whole large four pack box of Saltine crackers once. One of our current rescues, Lucy, who is about 12 now, once took a small mesh sack of those gold covered chocolate coins that they have out at Easter, and unwrapped and ate every one. And they were pushed well back on the counter and she's relatively short LOL Oh the stories we could tell, eh? Thanks for sharing your babies and stay warm. Big hugs!

  27. Such personalities and their names are perfect!
    The king of our house is our JRT Mr. Biggs (similar to your Sam P. Spade we don't know hat his first name is). He'll be 16 in just a few weeks and needs to wear his sweater now almost 24 hours a day!

  28. Very, very nice to meet your pack of dogs, thank-you for the introductions. Six is a lot! I only have my two rescues right now and they keep me whirling around like a dervish. Can only imagine mealtime for you and them, and the "sweater donning" must be an absolute hoot.

    So good that you have all of them and their wonderful personalities to talk to and to keep you company.

    After 30 years of no dogs (I waited until my Navy career was over) I now have two rescued herding dogs. I'm considering a third, an English Shepherd currently fostered in Virginia. He would have to wait until we get out to the Kentucky farm. (We'll see if God has that in mind for us.)

    My dogs teach me something about myself every day, and the lessons are usually painful, but I'm grateful for them. They will save me more than I will ever know.

    Thanks again for the great post!


Thank you for visiting Thistle Cove Farm; may God bless you, yours and the work of your hands and heart. My goal is to respond, here, to your comments although it may take a while.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...