Westward Ho!

We posted last Fur-iday using T’s cell phone en route to the mountains. If you’re wondering why you didn’t see it, it’s because it got posted to the wrong WordPress site. Oops! So hard to see the details on that tiny screen, not to mention type on that tiny keyboard with paws instead of thumbs!

So, a little late, but here’s our update from the road …

June 23, 2017

It’s another travelling Fur-iday! We are Kananaskis bound with horses in tow. This means cramped accommodations for humans and canines but three days of outdoor time, good eats, and good friends. We’ll tell you all about our adventure next week.

Until then…


West… To the Rockies!

Was It something I Said?

Was it something I said? Or, more likely, did?

T has gone away again. She packed a suitcase on Tuesday night and left on Wednesday with her sister­. I wouldn’t normally think it was my doing but I’ve been a little distracted lately, by the gophers that seem to everywhere around the farm, and the coyotes that have been coming close. And, when I’m distracted, I don’t always listen very well. Okay. When I’m distracted, I don’t listen at all. It’s like my ears just stop working.06-Chico-Sa-us-1One day recently, during a walk in the hay field, I ran off after a coyote. Apparently, T heard sounds that she thought were me calling for help and she came running. By the time I found my way back to her she dropped to the ground and burst into tears. I’m not sure if she was happy or sad or just out of breath but I sure got a big hug.


My ears work much better in a dog park.

So anyway, she left on Wednesday and then yesterday was her birthday, and I didn’t even get to tell her Happy Birthday. I hope she knew I was thinking about her … and missing her. And, because I was missing her, I got looking through some photos. So this Foto Fur-iday, the theme is “Me and T”.


She loves to do selfies with me.



After a bath, she gives me extra towelling because she knows how much I like it.


She’s always there with a hug, even when we’re not posing for a photo.



And sometimes we just hang out in the same space.


She takes me places, like to the Strathmore UFA in this picture…


And horseback riding in this one.


Even though I know I’m too big, she lets me sit on her lap…


No matter the weather.



And even at times when she prefers her solitude, she still lets me be close.



I hope she comes home soon. I promise to be good. Well … as good as I can with these faulty ears.

Tribute to a Russian Princess

When they first adopted her, or she them, T and Nollind called her Natalya because she reminded them of a Russian princess with her big ruff of white fur. I knew her as Nat, or Natters, since that’s what she was always called. Story has it that Nat chose Nollind, as opposed to the other way around. T and Nollind were at the Street Cat Rescue (now MEOW Foundation) to adopt a cat. Nollind was kneeling to pet one of the many cats up for adoption, and Nat jumped up on his back. Sounds like something she’d do. Such a ham for attention.


She always had a thing for Nollind.

Nat didn’t like me for the longest time. She’d hiss whenever I got too close, growl if I even looked in the direction of her food, and even swat at me sometimes. She and Logan were great friends so I knew it wasn’t just my dogness, it was something more personal.


Buddies and pals.

I’d like to think I won her over, but I think it was more that Logan took to herding her in recent years, becoming quite territorial. Nat would try to get up on the bed where Logan was lying and he’d lunge at her, sometimes snapping. He was often reprimanded, but it didn’t stop him. If he didn’t want her somewhere, she wasn’t going. With Logan behaving less friendly toward her, I guess Nat thought it wise to befriend the other canine in the house. Me. In his defense, it’s possible Logan’s snappiness grew out of years of blocked doorways, waiting in line at the water bowl, having his food dish claimed, and otherwise being run by cats.


The order of things in the early days.


Thirsty dog waiting for a drink.

Nat died in March on St. Patrick’s Day, two weeks before we came home from the desert. Since Chelsey died on Remembrance Day, I guess Nat thought that a human holiday was a good day to go, more memorable. Or maybe she wasn’t Russian but Irish?

We buried her in the yard by the caragana this past Monday. She’d been in the big freezer downstairs since she died. Sounded weird to me at first, but the ground was frozen when she died, we weren’t home, and there was no food in that freezer anyway. But then it was kind of creepy when we got home, knowing she was in there, hearing the freezer’s hum and being reminded of its contents.


Keeping his distance—not a fan of funerals.

The ground’s been thawed for weeks now, but I think T and Nollind were having some difficulty with the idea of opening the freezer and extracting a frozen cat. Couldn’t blame them really. It wasn’t so bad in the end, she was protected by a big plastic bag and looked like she was sleeping all swaddled in her towel. Her fur was cold but just as silky as ever.


Saying goodbye.

She’s buried next to King and Chelsey, the other two cats who came from the city with T and Nollind in 2003. Poor King. Eternity between the two arch enemies. But, maybe beyond the Rainbow Bridge Nat and Chelsey are friends and walk together in harmony … ya, right.


The resting place of Chelsey, King, and Nat.

Although now I never need to find another bed because she’s got mine, or wait to pass through a doorway because she’s sitting there, or share the attention with the softest feline you ever laid a hand (or nose) on, I’ll miss her. RIP Natalya. You will live forever in our hearts.05-chico-natalya-withchico-1