Pages

Sunday, 15 September 2019

Seeing does not mean believing

Whilst the In-House Trip Hazard (I really thought that was Daisy’s special skill) is an utter joy, as she gains in confidence there is frightening potential as an escapologist, not that I think she particularly wants to leave home, but she is both easily distracted (has the attention span of a newt) and very determined when she wants something.  Last weekend a couple of attempts had to be thwarted at great cost to my stress level.

The scary stuff only happened when we were all working on the drive and I went out onto the road, and Lunatic Lurcher decided to try her damnedest to get to me.  I remember Daisy trying to do exactly the same thing and LP and I rushing to put up netting to stop her.  We did the same for Millie.  Netting did not stop her.

So here's the background - at one corner of the drive, near the compost bins, the soil level is about 60cm higher than the actual drive so there's not much between the ground and the Large Brick Wall which surrounds the front of the garden.  With Millie's proven ability to worm her way through impenetrable shrubs with thick branches we knew this was a risky spot so I put up dense netting to keep her safe.

She jumped over it.

I put up more netting.

She got her teeth into the bottom of it, tore a big hole and wriggled straight through.

So we decided:  "Right, you little monkey, we'll stop your happy games" and bent a large piece of STEEL weld mesh into a right angle, and fixed it in place blocking not only the access through the laurel hedge, but preventing Millie from getting to the wall.  I replaced the netting as well.



That worked until Management said "err, she's behind the laurel trying to work out how to get over the next bit of wall".  So we added another section of weld mesh, and thinking we were SO CLEVER to block every possible exit route, he carried on working on the drive and I carried on pruning the hedges next to the pavement.  These hedges are not accessible from inside the garden, and therefore - neither was I.




Ten minutes later, Millie had joined me on the road-side of the hedge.
AArrrghhhhhhh

😱

So we laid a trap:  Management hid behind a section of wall where he could watch but not be seen, we set up the Bushnell camera and I went outside and called her.

And within a few minutes the little Madam was out again.  And if we had not seen it, and had photos to prove what she'd done, there is no way anyone (including the Homeless Hounds Aunties) would believe she can squeeze through a 20cm steel mesh.  But she can, or rather, she could, until we covered it with chicken wire which is buried in the ground to stop digging.

The photos are not the clearest, sorry, but what she did was put her front legs through, then her head & shoulders and wriggle, turning her chest sideways (because the diagonal of a 20cm square is 28cm, about 11 inches, and that is about the depth of her rig cage), and slither through looking like a foal being born.







It was a lot easier for her to wriggle in here than it was for me, but that is how the chicken wire was added.



Dratted little dear girl - came to see if she could help:




I don't know about "Gone in 60 Seconds" but if you watch the timestamp on the bottom of the GIF, once Millie had worked out how to get through she accomplished her goal in about ten seconds.




I'd love to say that was the end of our problems, that we packed up and went inside for a nice cold beer . . . chance would be a fine thing.

I turned my secateurs to the hedge the other side of the gate, for Management to tell me "she's got all of her front legs up on the wall and is trying to work out how she can haul herself up there".  That meant another significant piece of weld mesh cut and bent into shape.  I shall tell any neighbours who are silly enough to ask that I did it in order to provide support for the adjacent ivy, they won't believe me any more than you do!





20 comments:

  1. Looks like you've got it sorted now, but we used a big roll of stock fencing attached to wooden posts. The holes increase in size but are about 6" at dog height which did the trick. xx Debbie

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Debbie, I did think about going to the nearest farm supply and getting a roll of pig wire, but then you've still got to put in posts & strainers. Sounds insane, but the weld mesh is easier for us to manage, despite the hole size!

      Delete
  2. Millie just wants to be with you and will do whatever it takes. You're doing everything you can to keep her safe, it'll take time for her to settle. She's a very clever girl, beauty and brains. We once had a dog who scaled a six foot wall and took herself down the road to wait at the bus stop for husband to return, we couldn't believe it, so scary.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Eileen - waiting at a bus stop? I sometimes think our dogs are far more intelligent than we ever give them credit for :-)

      Delete
  3. What a little monkey! I am sure as she gets more assured in her surroundings - she will trust you and herself in the space - hope sooner rather than later xxx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Kate, "monkey" is only one of the many things she has been called recently! You are absolutely right, it is all about becoming more confident in her surroundings and in us.

      Delete
  4. Dear Jayne
    Oh my goodness - the Great Escape has nothing on her! Hopefully you've got it all under control(?!) now...
    Best wishes
    Ellie

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ellie, we will always "think" we have the boundaries under control until she gets through/over one of them. As Kate says, as Millie learns to trust more hopefully she will feel less like unscheduled adventures.

      Delete
  5. oh goodness, the gorgeous girl is a gazelle (choke me please ... i am now a slave to alliteration)- fencing woes can really put a dent into the old bank account ... I've been there and done that in the past with former pets that we had- Olivia is quite vertically challenged (let me be honest here ... I frequently think that she is challenged in quite a few ways, but in the interest of peace and harmony I overlook those and try to focus on her questionable charisma) so there aren't any issues with leaping gracefully or scaling heights- she can, however, squirm under things that should be a problem to anything more substantial than an earthworm, and she can find crevices for hiding- fortunately she cannot keep quiet after a 'clever' hide so she always gleefully announces her location- I can imagine that the possibility of a potential escape (even if she has no interest in actually leaving you) would cause you anxiety- well, now you have an interesting set of projects to add to your 'to do' lists- pet parentage is never dull!
    I'll be on a ferry tomorrow crossing from the Bolivar Peninsula
    to Galveston and I'll have the diva with me- we will think about you as there are almost always dolphins that approach and accompany the ferry crossings- I think I remember you at one time hoping for a seal or dolphin sighting ... we will have zero chance for a seal-
    the usual regards from this side of the pond-
    barb (and Olivia)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Morning Barb, alliteration is always acceptable {chortle!!} Hope your ferry trip went well - I had to toddle off to Google Maps to see where your journey was, now I better understand your comments about the hellish heat and humidity.

      Delete
  6. The HH aunties did chuckle at her escapades! Perfect home right there xx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dear Aunty Pauline, you wouldn't be chuckling if she got out and I lost her . . .

      Delete
  7. Fort Knox!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I've lots of blog catch up to do, but saw this & wondered. Once I'm myself, I'll be in touch. Have a good week & take care.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Susan, I do hope the jetlag is not too bad and you will soon feel more like yourself.

      Delete
  8. Replies
    1. Thanks Sue. Along with monkey and little b*gger, Houdini is one of the more polite things she has been called in the last couple of weeks 😁

      Delete
  9. Sounds like there's never a dull moment now with this young lady - I hope she settles down before you end up in the loony bin! lol

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Eunice, she is already starting to settle down but I suspect we've got ourselves another girl who does not know the meaning of the word "dull" 🐾😊

      Delete
  10. Oh dear! It sounds like its a case of trying to out-smart each other :D She's definitely keeping you on your toes!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Nikki-Ann. I'm afraid there can only be one Alpha-Female in this pack, and it is not going to be Millie.

      Delete

I love receiving your comments, sometimes they are the only way I know I am not talking to myself . . . 😊 and I always try to respond to each and every one. So thank you.


(comments are currently moderated, I will free them from Comment Prison as soon as I see them 😱 )