LeeRoy’s story will be new to many of my readers. So I want you to have fun reading from Episode One through all thirteen episodes.
Begin here and each episode has a link to the next one at the bottom of the post. Enjoy.
Be sure to go and “Like” him at his Facebook page. He loves new friends and he’ll keep you up to date on his gallivanting.
QUESTION: Do you like dogs? What kind.
[Read Episode 15 yet? Or you may want to begin at the beginning: Episode 1]
What? LeeRoy in Danger? Absolutely!!
So LeeRoy asked me to update his friends.
He’s been overly concerned these days about challengers to his territory. Apparently this group of about 5 Coyotes (pronounced Ky-OH-tees) have been showing up in our second field at between 9-10PM every night for the past week or so. They look lean, mean, and hungry.
One comes out into the garden baiting LeeRoy. The pack’s glowing eyes can be seen in the opening from our first into our second field when we shine our car’s headlights there. SO . . .
The alpha coyote comes into LeeRoy’s garden (Remember: LeeRoy the Garden Dog). He immediately gets LeeRoys attention. LeeRoy starts barking like crazy. LeeRoy’s bark is scary too–really low and loud! The coyote turns to run so that LeeRoy will run after him to the second field–where the pack stands ready to attack him. BUT . . .
They don’t know LeeRoy. They underestimate his cowardice. He is extremely afraid of other dogs (yes, even girl dogs) so he won’t give chase, he simply moves away from the garden closer to the house. Barking over his shoulder. The closer he moves to the house, the more he barks (as though he’s really tough). The lead coyote is baffled, but keeps trying to bait LeeRoy by running at him and then turning with his tail between his legs when LeeRoy barks at him.
Last night, Cheryl–who lives with us–tells me that her headlights are on the pack. So I grab my gun (pellet) and take a shot at the gang. The noise of the gun going off (I was surprised how loud the pellet gun sounded. I think a .22 would have been quieter.) scares LeeRoy. So LeeRoy runs away from me right toward where the gang is laying in ambush. We all start calling, and whistling for LeeRoy to come back. I hide the gun behind my back.
Cheryl goes down, grabs his bowl and starts clanging it with a spoon as she shovels food into it and hollers for LeeRoy. Luke–who also lives with us–calls for LeeRoy too.
LeeRoy stops just short of where they’re hiding and heads back a little and sits to see what all the noise is about at his food bowl. Every once in awhile glancing over his shoulder at the opening in the field.
Meanwhile, the coyotes are pacing back and forth and the alpha coyote heads out of the garden, back toward where his gang is hiding. They’re frightened by all our shouting for LeeRoy. So we realized . . . we can’t get LeeRoy into the house. We can’t shoot at the coyotes or chase them with my machete or LeeRoy will think we’re after him. But that gang won’t give up. They’ll be back again tonight.
What’s the solution?
This is where you (or someone you know)come(s) in. If you have a solution, please comment here. If you know someone who has a solution, why not help LeeRoy by sending this post to them so they can respond to us? Thanks.
QUESTION: What do you think we should do to help/protect LeeRoy from this evil, hungry looking bunch? I’m opened, though I can’t speak for LeeRoy.
©2012, David C Alves
[Read Episode 14 yet?]
LeeRoy’s nemesis–the Squirrel–is back at it. He is raiding LeeRoy’s food. I often catch him in the act of sitting on LeeRoy’s bowl munching down LeeRoy’s little “Lamb & Rice” bits. I’m not sure he bothers with the hot dogs, but can’t be sure. I think if he was snarfin’ the hot dogs, LeeRoy would be having a fit and sending him on his way. Fortunately, Squirrel can’t eat much. So there’s still plenty for LeeRoy. Especially since last week. Here’s why.
The folks at the SPCA said that they were really wondering about how LeeRoy did during the winter. I told them he came through fine and that they could catch up and keep tabs by subscribing to LeeRoy’s facebook page and these episodes of “The LeeRoy Sagas.” So, they’ve been tuning in.
Anyhow, they dropped off 67 pounds of dog food for LR and he’s lovin it. He’s taken to hiding in a different part of the field now though. When he wants to keep a low profile, he’s now way at the back in the tree line. I’m not sure what the deal is with that . . . it’s weird, but . . . that’s LR. What can I say?
During the sunny mornings, he’s dead center in the garden, laying full out in the sun. Man what a life! Then he lays on his back, belly and paws up for awhile.
When it rains, he’s usually laid out in his shanty. Although a couple of times I’ve noticed him sitting errect in the garden just staring at the house in the pouring rain. I usually call Marcy’s attention to it. “Hey . . . look at this guy. He’s just sitting there in the pouring rain. Staring at the house.” Last time I went down and called him from the back door, but he just watched me until I finally gave up, closed the door, and went inside to write another episode.
There you have it.
[Have you read Episode 13 yet?]
So . . . LeeRoy is now back in the garden. Yes . . . all the snow is melted, the brown ground and fields are soggy but clear and LeeRoy is Lord of the garden plot again. He seems VERY happy. He loves the birds’ singing. He watches the deer and turkey that come through. He only chases varmints (opossums, raccoon, and squirrels that get too close to his shanty).
He’s posing for pictures again. That’s why we have such a nice one for this post.
I’m hoping those of you who follow LeeRoy will ask some questions which I will be happy to answer in subsequent posts. Leave your comments. Don’t be afraid. I sometimes read them to LeeRoy. Or you could leave them for him directly at his blog on Facebook.
So LeeRoy is considering what Wayne said about him at thegodjourney.com. He’s wondering if he’s missing something in life. He’s coming in a little closer. And he seems to be open to new foods. So perhaps progress. He’s communicating a little more on his blog too. He was pretty quiet during the cold months. Sometimes it got as cold as -10F, but he seemed to do fine. He did not like the freezing rain or mixed precip that came in March. But snow didn’t seem to bother him. He moved his straw around in the shanty and pushed it out onto the clearing he made near it after every storm. We tried to keep him comfortable by replacing straw and fluffing it up for him.
His friend Paul came most every day with some treats and just to visit. LeeRoy takes to Paul. And Luke feeds him every morning and evening like clockwork. He also made sure that the ice was broken and skimmed off LeeRoy’s bucket.
But now all that’s behind LeeRoy and he’s looking forward to the spring and summer in Penacook, NH on his own little plot of earth. And to the tilling of the garden where he can once again be King of the Cabbages.
What do you think? Does he have the life or what?
Meanwhile, his leash was getting shorter every week. Whether he chewed it down or wore it down, we weren’t sure. Someone then suggested that we try something different. We began watching the “Dog Whisperer” more often, and thought more seriously about Caesar Milano. I figured that LeeRoy would be a real challenge for him. He is great with dogs that are vicious and weird, but I noticed they are always in reach, approachable. What about a dog that you can’t get within ten feet of? We haven’t ruled this out yet.
So LeeRoy lay in our garden day and night, with the exception of brief patrols around the property (6.8 acres) to mark his possession. He stayed clear of us but never took his eye off of us. If Marcy went to the garden to work, he would no longer run away into the second field, but would lay 10 yards away and watch her. It seemed to me that he was warming to her.
As I continued my strategy of treats a both feedings, I noticed a change. LeeRoy was drawing closer to me (as long as I stayed at ground level). Within a few days of this new nearness, I tried something. I broke off half the treat and held the other half toward him. He gobbled down the half I had broken off and tossed to him and then he moved in for the remainder. He actually took it from my hand. Then jumped back. I tried another. He took it from my hand. So now LeeRoy was actually feeding from my hand. But it was still not consistent. Sometimes he took it, but the next morning when I tried it again, he’d react differently and not take it but barked instead. When he barked, I not only withheld his treat, but took his bowl and went inside. He would smell around where the bowl had been then sit down there. I opened the door and said, “So are you done making noise?” And would come out with his bowl and kneel down and hold out the treat. He took it. Then sat waiting for me to leave so he could finish his bowl of food. Now I considered this a breakthrough. LeeRoy was not only coming closer. He was taking treats from my hand. I didn’t have his confidence enough to reach out to pet him or move too quickly, but at least he was learning a new behavior.
Little did I know but another interesting breakthrough was about to take place . . .