Tag Archives: animal

Sparky Dances for Joy

Sparky 1

Galaxy 10

Sparky the squirrel seemed full of the joys of . . . Autumn!

Sparky 2

I captured the little critter scampering above in the canopies of these large trees, while I sat in the shade beneath enjoying my coffee. It was nice of him to provide the entertainment!

Sparky 3

He even sunbathed awhile, stretched out on a branch, as comfy to him as any sofa to us.

But living life in the fast lane, he didn’t stay for long.

Sparky 4

I caught him just about to leap across a wide open space to the next tree. I love how he gets his eye in and bunches up, coiled like a spring, before bounding into mid-air, propelled by his strong back legs.

Sparky 5

He then confidently scampered at speed through an arboreal pathway only he could see. I snapped this last action shot as he leapt away; on to his next adventure.


This is the tenth and final in my series of Galaxy camera phone photos. I feel confident now, that I can take photos in focus (mostly) with my phone. I hope you have enjoyed the series as much as I have in making it.


My Baby!

LM 1

Galaxy 9

Impossible for me to do a photographic series and not include pictures of my ‘baby’, Little Monkey.

LM 2

The above photo was taken in the coolth of the evening, when the sun had already dipped below the horizon. Even so, my little Galaxy camera phone coped well.

LM 3

As it also did here in bright sunlight, with LM drying off after her bath.

LM 4

I’m very happy with the capabilities of the camera, once I learned how to take photos without moving the phone!

This is the ninth in my series of Galaxy camera phone photos.



Little Monkey

Little Monkey

Little Monkey is as lithe as ever, despite her advanced years, (nearly eleven and a half).

The Header photo on my blog site shows LM twisting in sheer joy in the early morning sunshine.


That photo was taken several years ago, but apart from a little more grey around the mouth now, LM clearly hasn’t lost any of her suppleness.

How doe she do it?

Ah, she’s a dog!


The Yoghurt Pot Experiment

LM and Yogurt Pot 1

LM and Yoghurt Pot 1

It is never too late to teach an old dog new tricks. I firmly believe this, having adopted many older rescue dogs over the years and trained them to behave as I wish, in only a few months.

Little Monkey, on the other hand, may be an exception to the rule!

I realise she is not the brightest of dogs (she has other good attributes) but I thought I’d have a go at teaching her a new trick, totally different to anything she has ever done before.

She can do the sits, downs, recalls and stays no problem. This time I thought I’d try a little “Search and Rescue”. That is, search for a treat under an empty yoghurt pot and rescue it; by eating it!

I eat a mini yoghurt most days (so there is no shortage of pots available) and give the almost empty container to Little Monkey, who I have trained to take gently from me and go straight outside to lick.

LM and Yoghurt Pot 2

LM and Yoghurt Pot 2

You can see from the photo above, that not only is this finger-licking good, but also face-licking good!

So to the teaching of a new trick:

I sat Little Monkey down in the shade, showed her a dog biscuit and let her watch as I placed a piece under two yoghurt pots a metre or so apart.

I walked away a little then said, “Fetch!”

LM ran straight to me and sat down, looking expectantly for her treat.

I said, “Fetch!” again, pointing to the yoghurt pot. She looked at my hand, then at the ground by my feet. After pointing a few times, closer and then directly at the pot, almost touching it, she finally went there to sniff the ground, overturning the pot almost by accident and retrieving her treat.

I tried with the second treat . . . And we went through the whole procedure again!

I did this three times in total and each time she came to me first for her treat, though she did get quicker at finding them under the yoghurt pots. She still did this by scent though, by sniffing near the pot and by continuing to do so, managing to tip over the pot and reveal the treat. My plan would be to have several pots with a treat in only one pot eventually.

I didn’t quite get the response I was hoping for (I think my old boy Mr Spaghetti Legs would have been quicker on the uptake!)  but LM had lots of fun. It is food after all! And I am sure that with regular repetition (a 1000 times usually works for her!) she will understand and go straight for the pots.

But this is going to take some time!


The Midnight Loquat Run – Again!

You Little Monkey

You Little Monkey

Really Little Monkey?

You desperately want to go outside?

It’s 2 o’clock in the morning! I want to sleep!

Oh all right. Off you go. Be quick.

And just maybe tomorrow you won’t eat quite so many loquats. Leave some for Sparky the squirrel.

I’m tired of this Midnight Loquat Run; also known as Eat, Sleep, Poop!


A Comedy of Errors

LM Collar 1

LM Collar 1

When Little Monkey and I get home after our walk, we have a little routine we always do. These routines keep her calmer and reinforce her training and positive behaviour.

So, I get her to sit by the garage doors before I take her lead off. This time I popped the poop bag in the bin before getting her to sit. Then I looked at my hand and saw I was still holding the poop bag . . . which meant I had dropped the keys in the bin instead!

So I left LM with her lead still on while I dug down in the wheelie bin and rescued the keys. Then, since I was half way there anyway, I went to check the mail box, leaving LM in a sit/stay, still with her lead on.

She’ll will normally stay like this while I do all sorts of things, even disappearing out of sight round the side of the house. When I whistle, then she’ll move.

Unfortunately, as I was getting the mail, a woman jogged past our house,  with two little Jack Russells in tow.

Little Monkey immediately broke her stay and chased madly round the garden after them.

Fair enough; she can’t help herself.

So I yelled’ “Hey!” to LM and chatted to the woman as she jogged past.

Then I called LM back to me at the garage doors, because we’ll still do the routine, starting again at the beginning.

When LM came back and sat down nicely again, I noticed her lead was missing. On closer inspection I saw that she’d broken her red cloth collar!

LM Collar 2

LM Collar 2

I took the remains of her collar off, finished the stay and release, then looked for the lead in the garden.

I found it by the automatic gate. Unluckily, the handle of the lead had got hooked around the metal end of the gate runner – and stayed there, while LM and her collar carried on chasing the little dogs running past the property.

I was pretty miffed at the time, because this collar was specially handmade and I can no longer get them. (They work like a choker chain, but without any chain, by having part of the collar able to change size between the rings. Normally the collar will hang loosely, but can be given a quick tiny tug as a correction, as in – I have also seen the cat and you are not chasing it!)

Looking at the remains of the collar I could see that it had worn thin. LM is now wearing Mr Spaghetti Legs’ black collar.

LM Collar 3

LM Collar 3

Afterwards though, I thought it was just as well that LM broke her collar at home in the garden and not trying to chase a cat across a road and getting run over!

And all this happened in the first place because I threw my keys in the bin!