Sunday, September 06, 2009

Wendell Has His Day

You know what they say, every dog has his day. And it is true. Even Wendell.

There has been a big bold coyote coming around and he is called B.D. for his habit of sauntering insolently into the goat pasture in broad daylight. Every time he comes, he comes a little closer.

The farmer runs at him and throws rocks and shoots at him with the pellet gun and he just doesn't care. He is an excellent judge of speed, which let's face it the farmer lacks, and he stands his ground until the last minute and then bounds away as if he was just leaving anyway and it is a coincidence that the farmer is running pell mell toward him hollering and throwing rocks.

The farmer always calls for Atty but usually Atty sleeps during the day and it takes a while to wake him up and let's face it once he is woken up it is pretty much a tie between him and the farmer as to who is the slowest. But Atty definitely puts on quite a display of woofing, I feel like clapping every time I hear it, it is very authentic.

The other day B.D. came right up to the fat lady pasture, leaving only the fence between them, and he looked the fat girls up and down as if he were peering into the lobster tank at a seafood restaurant. He comes around so often that the big ones - Bertie is a good example - don't even have sense to know they should stay far away from him. Bertie and Binky, in fact, were crowding up to the fence line to see if he maybe had some pockets with vanilla wafers in them.

Anyway the farmer caught sight of him and hove into view hollering and hucking rocks and calling for Atty. The farmer came on down the hill like a battleship being tugged out to sea, stopping now and then to pick up rocks, and yelling for Lori - "get the gun!" - and Atty - "ATTICUS!"

The farmer opened up the gate, thinking Atty was on his way, and grabbed some more rocks. But it wasn't Atty coming. It was Wendell flying like a little black bat out of hell and he shot past the farmer as soon as the gate opened and went straight for the coyote. The farmer was terribly alarmed since Wendell was maybe - maybe - half the size of B.D. But Wendell apparently didn't know it, he just went on like a dervish and scared the coyote so badly that it turned around and ran right into the fence where it caught for one scary moment with Wendell jumping at its throat like a good bulldog will do and then it sprang free and shot out through the hole in the fence where Melly goes out to eat hardhack in the meadow. Wendell was hot on his heels and acting like a true berserk.

Wendell and the coyote ran about a hundred feet along the fenceline and then both of them disappeared into the high grass, with the farmer lumbering along helplessly behind, yelling for Wendell to leave the coyote and come back.

Atty finally appeared, huffing and puffing, and ran along the fenceline in the wrong direction. "This way, Atty," the farmer yelled, pointing toward the canary grass into which Wendell and B.D. had vanished. But Atty flopped down next to the gate, spreading his paws out like a lion. He had used up his quota of running energy for the day.

"Wendell!" hollered the farmer, over and over, and in between yells it was all deathly quiet for several long minutes until you might almost start to wonder whether the coyote hadn't lured Wendell into a trap, but then we heard the wet snuffling of an overexerted boston terrier and a couple of seconds later Wendell's head bobbed up out of the grass, wearing a big delighted grin. I never saw a dog look more pleased.

And B.D. hasn't come back since then.