Tag Archives: ruby

Ruby Tuesday – “She’s a Killer!”

3 Jun

Disclaimer and Warning:  This post is not for the delicate of stomach, nor the lover of squirrels.

We are — as are most birders — beset by squirrels.  One of the many reasons that a Rat Terrier joined our lives was their propensity for chasing rodents.  Too often, I look out at my feeders and see this:

Tactical Error

or this:

Squirrel-Proof Feeder?  NOT!

All of which does not mean that I ever wanted Ruby to catch one.  Sure, she’s caught a mole (or two — we found another one) before but still, a mole is a far cry from a squirrel. I was pretty happy with her just chasing them away.  Occasionally, she scares a bird but my seed bill is way down with Ruby on the job!

But, I got an email from Greg today after I whined to him about how tired and sick I was feeling (staying home to go to the doctor tomorrow) that while my day was rotten, Ruby was having a GREAT day.  She “got” a squirrel.  I wrote back for clarification . . . “You mean she caught one?”  “Yup!” came his reply  “She killed it.”  And, then, in typical male fashion, he told me that he left it in the driveway for the kids to see before we dealt with it.

She's a Killer!

So, here’s how it went down.  He went out to get the mail and, as usual, Ruby went with him.  They walked out, got the mail, and then walked back.  As he got to his office door, he heard some very intense rustling noises coming from the leaves under the birch trees.  He turned to look and Ruby was going to town shaking something to kill it.  He ran out quickly thinking she’d gotten a bird and saw the fluffy tail.  She took her kill out to the driveway and then left it.  It was of no more interest to her.  The picture above was as interested as she got in it — sniff, sniff.  Yup.  It’s still dead.

So, she accomplished her goal.  I’d imagine it will make her even more determined.  Greg and I are amazed that she caught one.  They are way faster than she is and usually watch carefully enough to get a head start.  We envision two scenarios:  1)  The squirrel only saw Greg and thought it was safe.  Ruby came it from behind the car and he never saw her coming, or  2)  The squirrel saw her but instead of bolting up the tree, it froze as they will do as a car comes barreling down on them on the road with similar success.  I’m, of course, trying not to think about the 3rd scenario wherein the squirrel was ill and couldn’t get away.  Maybe it fell and was stunned.  Who knows.  Well, Ruby, but she’s not telling!

PS.  The kids were thrilled with Ruby’s accomplishment and praised her up one side and down the other for getting those bad squirrels.  That’s my tender darlings.

PPS.  We threw the squirrel in the trash.  Only later did I think to leave it for the Ravens — we’ll do that next time.  Should there be a next time.  Sigh.  Rest in Peace, Squirrely.


Ruby Tuesday — The Beach Dog Edition

20 May

Greg and Ruby

Since we were all having fun on the beach, Greg thought Ruby might enjoy it too. I had taken her there on leash earlier in the morning and she’d seemed to like it. The beach was empty and Ushki, the corgi, was already romping so we figured we’d get Ruby too. Greg couldn’t find her leash — luckily, she’s a lightweight little thing.

Ruby - Beach Dog!

Wonder of wonders. She who hates the water . . . loves the beach! She pretty much kept her feet dry but she romped and explored and played. So many good smells for a dog who loves to go to ground!

Playing on the beach!

She helped the kids dig their defense against the oncoming tide.

Ruby digging on the beach

She helped Greg look for intrepid sand gophers.

Ruby at Albion River Beach

She looked for love. In all the wrong places.

Greg, Ruby, and Ruth on the rocks

The biggest surprise of all was when she saw Ruthie high atop this rock on the beach and simply ran up the side of it. I wish I had pictures of it but each time she did it, I simply stood there with my camera limp and my mouth open in surprise. She simply ran up the side like a mountain goat. Ushki, the corgi, looked up at her in awe and dumbfoundment (probably a similar look to the one on my face!).

Ruby loves camping but she REALLY loved camping at Albion. We all did!

Ruby Tuesday — A Very Smart Dogger

6 May

Ruby, sleeping

Ruby is a very smart dog.  She is also a dog with very little coat and she gets cold.  Our bed is the warmest bed in the house.  It’s a 1970’s era water bed so it’s always warm.  She loves it.  Greg — for all his many fantastic atributes — does not like sleeping with a dog.  So, she is not allowed to sleep with us.  Ruby usually solves this dilemma by sleeping with the kids — not much is warmer than sleeping kids, after all.

But Ruby would like to sleep with us, in our bed, our warm bed.  She occasionally tries to join us — I will half-awakedly push her off.  This is when she usually goes to sleep with the kids. And, all is well.

Ruby is a very smart dog, however.  This morning, I woke up and she was sleeping at my feet.  She’d found a warm spot and crept up there and curled up quietly and was asleep.  At my feet.  Quietly.

I gave her a silent pat on the head and went on my way.  She’s a good girl.  What Greg doesn’t know, won’t hurt him!  😀

Ruby Tuesday – Camping Dog Eats BBQ

29 Apr

Offer a Labrador a stale Cheerio and he will be your new best friend. Not so a Rat Terrier — she is cool to new people — not rude, but cool. Ruby is all about reserve and loyalty. She will eat your stale Cheerio — have no fear — but she won’t consider the next step to lifelong devotion.

Managing a dog on a camping trip is a tricky thing. No matter how well behaved the dog, the rangers will strongly prefer that you keep your dog contained in some way. The neighbors will also prefer that your dog is contained in some way rather than rampaging around like a wild thing. There are various tools to help with the requisite containment but they all have their downsides. Leashes get tangled. Pens can be jumped out of. And, dogs confined to motorhomes can whine and whimper and cause all who hear them to think their owners are horribly mean. Besides, when you add a passel of kids into the picture, all those systems get even trickier. What to do? What to do?

Ruby in the motorhome

At home, Ruby’s natural stay-at-home-with-her-people tendencies have quickly and easily been honed such that she doesn’t bolt out the door unless given permission (most of the time — she’s not quite 2 years old, remember?). She hangs out on the porch when we’re out in the front doing things. She doesn’t bolt outside while the kids and I are loading the car in the morning for school. She’s a very good girl if we watch her and remind her what she should be doing.

I know there is no substitute for good training. Not that I’m a particularly good trainer but shaping her natural tendencies towards what I wanted from her makes it all much easier. I wanted to be able to leave the motorhome door open, tell her to wait, and know that she would do just that — wait inside and not come out without permission. We started while I was working in the kitchen of the motorhome so I could reinforce the command regularly. At first, she was out the door in seconds but gradually she got the idea and by Sunday afternoon, she was lying down inside the motorhome relaxed and calm. Everyone in camp helped by sending her back inside or saying “wait” as they walked by or in and out of the motorhome.

Ruby being so good

And, all good girls deserve rewards. A t-bone seems like an adequate reward, don’t you think? Ruby certainly thought it was worthy.

Ruby loves her some bones!

P.S.  This is my 1,201 post.  Wow.  Who knew I had so much to say?

Ruby Tuesday

1 Apr

My girl!

Ruby did not come on this camping trip with us.  If we are just going and hanging out at the campground, then Ruby can come along and have a grand time with us.  But, when we are gone on this kind of a trip where we are away at amusement parks for most of the trip, well, then taking Ruby would be unkind, to say the least.  So, Ruby got to go to Gramma’s house for the duration.

Gramma loves dogs and adores Ruby.  Ruby has her own waterbowl — that Gramma made at a paint your own pottery place — at Gramma’s house.  Gramma saves special tidbits of cheese throughout the week so that when she sees Ruby on Sunday nights, she can give them to her.  Ruby is a spoiled rotten dog at Gramma’s house.  Add to it, my sister-in-law and her sons who also work hard to spoil Ruby and, well, you’ve got a pretty cushy set-up for a dog.

To be honest, we were worried that Ruby wouldn’t want to come home.

Thankfully, she did.  She was so happy to see us all.   Jumping and licking and just pressing her body against us.   We had missed her a lot.  Her presence is so huge for such a small dog.  All of us mentioned it on the trip — I miss Ruby!  I can’t wait to see Ruby.  In fact, when we decided not to stop on our way home and get her — but wait until the next day when we went over for dinner, well, I thought there would be a mini riot on our hands.  Ruth was most displeased.  And at 9-3/4, her displeasure is becoming something to be reckoned with!  🙂

Ruby was glad to see us and glad to be home.  The squirrels had gotten brave in her absence and she was pretty busy yesterday letting them know that she was back, thank you very much.

And you know, she’s been getting a few extra tidbits from us, too.

Ruby Tuesday — The I Hate Home Depot Edition

18 Mar

That's not a good sit, Ruby!

Ruby wants you to know that she hates Home Depot too. (And yes, this is all just a clever way of complaining about Home Depot under the guise of a Ruby Tuesday post.) Ruby hates them more now because tonight they were supposed to call and let us know that our countertops were in and ready for pickup. But, there was no phone message tonight. So, I called the store around 6pm to find out whether or not I should order pizza or just go down and get the countertops and get fast food in the car. The kids were rampaging around whining about not having any food in the house and I was irritated to say the least. Well, the girl that answered the phone was quite helpful but ran out of options when no one in receiving would answer the blinking phone. So, she told me that she’d give my message to a guy who would call me back in 20 minutes. At 7pm – 40 minutes later, I loaded the kids up in the truck and we went into town for pizza — meeting Greg there.

The phone call came in at 7:44 pm. The message was hilarious — I’m sure he thought he was being clear but he said, and I quote, “If your countertops aren’t supposed to have backsplashes, then I think I’m looking at them so if you aren’t sure, call me back.”

Sigh. Heavy, heavy sigh.

As for me, I’m going to go back to grading 5th grade essays where the language is clearer and more definite than a well-paid Home Depot sales associate’s phone messages.

Maybe tomorrow night, I’ll be able to take a picture of Ruby next to our new countertops without backsplashes, thank you very much!

Ruby Tuesday — House Destruction Edition

19 Feb


Can we talk? You have no idea what is going on around here. They have torn the whole house up. No one is cooking. My food dish is moved to the bathroom — do you believe that? The bathroom? They are doing dishes in the bathtub. I tell you, it’s crazy!

Do we really need all these boxes?

Look at all the junk they brought home from IKEA the other day. They didn’t even take me along — good thing too. There wouldn’t have been room in the car. Sheesh! They tore all the cupboards apart in the kitchen and put all this sticky, stinky stuff all over it. They are banging, pounding, and making bizarre noises with all sorts of equipment that hisses, squeals, pops, and grinds. It’s horrible.

Oh, and when I try to help? Are they grateful? Pleased? Tolerant? Nope. They say, “Ruby! Out! We don’t need your help.” How much is a girl supposed to tolerate?

And, the worst part? They eat out every single night. But, how many doggy bags do you think they bring home? That’s right! They forget all about Ruby while they eat their ribs and hamburgers and steak and pizza and chinese food. Poor me. You can see the insanity for yourself {click}. Don’t think about how nice their kitchen is going to be — think about how rough life is for a little dog with sensitive ears and not enough doggy bags!

I’m willing to take matters into my own hands, I tell you. My Gramma was here helping today — they didn’t make her go out and not help! — and when she went home, I tried to go with her. She’s the one who made me my own bowl and saves special bits of cheese for me. That’s a house a girl could love! Not this insane asylum. Sigh.

Ruby sunbathing

It’s enough to make me just give up. Where are the smelling salts?

Ruby Tuesday — The Craft Edition

22 Jan

Ruby likes to help me knit

Ruby firmly believes that she would be a remarkable crafter if only I’d give her the chance. Cat-like, she wants to jump in your lap and help you knit or crochet or glue buttons down to a wreath with hot melt glue. Poor silly girl . . . that whole no thumbs thing really gets in the way.

This is also a sneaky way for me to write about my crafting on Ruby Tuesday. Ruby and I consulted and decided that my “tangerine dream” was an ugly orange nightmare. Soooooooo, I moved on to bigger and better things. Above is the knitting that I did with some amazing alpaca yarn. Totally yummy! Alpaca yarn is amazingly soft and easy to work with. Everything that Julie Zickefoose has been saying about Alpacas must be true!  I am utterly in love with alpaca fiber.

Liza's crocheting

But then, we had Crafty Chix on Saturday and I learned how to crochet.   And, I was — if you’ll pardon the pun — hooked!  I am seriously thinking about ripping out the knitting and crocheting it instead.  And, that is even though my scarf did not turn out — although, I think it’s still wearable.  I’m thinking about ripping it out too and starting over but I’m not sure I can really do that — it was a lot of work!  We’ll see — I would really like it to lie flat the way it’s supposed to.  Decisions, decisions!

Ruby's new doggy door

This was a big home improvement project this weekend (hmmm, note to self, get out the shop vac and clean up that debris!).  Greg put in a dog door for Ruby.  It is supposed to be electronic so that Ruby can go in and out but her little squirrel/raccoon/skunky friends can’t decide to follow her in.   So far that is proving a little bit problematic.   We had fun training Ruby to use it and still have to remind her about it but it has greatly cut down on my door monitoring hours.  Yay!  You can’t tell but it’s in my laundry room (the most awkward room known to womankind).  The way the room is set up, there is a ludicrous angle that we have to sort of ignore.  I’ve always shoved boxes into this corner to at least fill the space with ‘storage’ (aka, out-of-my-sight-clutter).  That’s going to have to change now because I’m already tired of moving boxes to make sure the path is clear for Ruby!  🙂 For more on our home improvement projects, go see my house blog.  We got a lot done this weekend!

Ruby Tuesday — Christmas Wishes

24 Dec

My wish for all of you is that you have a

joyous Christmas filled with happiness and love.

Ruby, on the other paw, wishes for a torment-free Christmas.

Ruby's Christmas Sweater

A Christmas without sweaters. Without hats.

I won't move - even with a cookie on my head

A Christmas without cookies on your head.

I hate Christmas!

Ruby wishes this for the whole world, but mostly, she wishes it for herself.

Christmas Generator - http://www.christmastext.com
Christmas Comments - http://www.christmastext.com

Ruby Tuesday — A Deep and Abiding Hatred

4 Dec

New winter sweater
I won’t look at you while I am wearing this – this – this thing.

Ruby is not a dog that likes being cold very much. She really prefers to be warm and cozy, all things considered. Ruby likes to curl up in little balls. She likes to sleep on our water bed . . . under the covers. When it’s very cold, she’s been known to sneak under the lap blanket I use on the couch and cozy on in and make herself at home. She is a dog that likes to be warm and cozy.

So, I think I can be forgiven for thinking that she’d like a sweater on cold days. I know many dogs that do like them. I know a couple of dogs that will bring the sweater to their owner on cold days and ask to have it put on. I do not believe Ruby will be one of those dogs. She doesn’t much care for the sweater.

Perhaps it’s the style. It is a trifle little old mannish. But, she’s a dog of striking colors and I didn’t want to get her a pink and foofy sweater. I thought it might be beneath her dignity (and I knew it would be beneath my husband’s dignity). So, perhaps it is a little unhip for such a cool dog as Ruby.

Perhaps it’s the cut. After all, it does end right at her hips and I know that the “What Not To Wear” folks would say that accents her widest part. So, perhaps her antipathy is because it makes her ass look big or something? Hey a girl’s got to have a little vanity.


You know I hate this, right?
You know I hate this thing but you are still taking pictures of me in it. That’s not right

On the other hand, perhaps she simply needs to get used to it. She may just feel self-conscious wearing it and need to get used to it. She seemed to be okay with it when she ran out into the back looking for squirrels. Maybe time will heal this unreasonable hatred she has for the sweater. Or maybe, she just really needs something pink and foofy. Who knows. For now, we are only putting it on her for short periods of time. Poor thing.