The Once And Former

Remember when Morty moved in?  He just showed up in the driveway one day, smelling wild, and refused to leave.

Morty, the day he showed up, Memorial Day weekend, 2012.
Morty, the day he showed up, Memorial Day weekend, 2012.

No one claimed him.

Turns out, Morty and Crabby had a similar interest:  the love of nature and getting away from it all.  And so it came to pass that Morty became Crabby’s Main Mutt.

The Noble Beast in his element.
The Noble Beast in his element. (2012)

Morty had no fear.


The ground was his bed and the sky was his blanket. If he got tired, he just lay down where ever he was and took a snooze.   He needed no comforts of home, the Wild was his home.


So rugged was Morty, he could even carry his own pack and it never slowed him down.


But then things started to change.


And then they changed some more.


And here we are today:

I present to you, The Once and Former Noble Beast, now known as Princess Morty.

Princess Morty, 7/4/15
Princess Morty, 7/4/15

Special Offer From SamDoum Art to Run A Muck Ranch Followers!

I just received an e-mail from Samara, the amazing artist at SamDoum Art with an exclusive offer for Run A Muck Ranch friends!

From Samara:

“I’m currently offering 25% off on all pet portraits for all Run A Muck fans who find me through your website. All they will need to do is click on the pet portrait badge on your blog and that page will direct them to my pet portrait Etsy shop. Then, while completing their order, all they’ll need to do is enter the Promocode  “RUNAMUCK25”. The offer lasts until January 1st, 2015. But it’s a good idea to order as soon as possible in order to ship before the Christmas deadline, for those purchasing as a gift for someone else.”


Run A Muck Ranch's Gracie painted by SamDuom Art.
Run A Muck Ranch’s Gracie painted by SamDuom Art.


The SamDoumArt badge is the first widget below the header on this blog, titled Pet Portraits,  with the Macaw on it – also painted by Samara.



Run A Muck Ranch's Mortimer painted by SamDuom Art
Run A Muck Ranch’s Mortimer painted by SamDuom Art

This is the PERFECT gift for any dog mom, and most dog dads, on your Christmas list!


Hannah, the winner of Run A Muck Ranch's Facebook contest for internationally adopted dogs.
Hannah, the winner of Run A Muck Ranch’s Facebook contest for internationally adopted dogs.




More Fun Times at the Waterhole

Franky (left), Morty (top) and Slugger (bottom) on Sunday Family Desert Walk this morning.  We took Franky hoping he could keep the walk respectable.  Things don’t always work out as we would hope 🙂


Note Franky's look of pure disgust at the shemanegans.
What do you think was going through Franky’s mind at that particular moment?



How to Destroy a Noble Beast

Gertie has become quite couch savvy.  It’s gotten to the point where, after the last pee of the morning before work, she takes her rightful place on the south arm of the couch, and remains there for the rest of the day.


Gertie taking advantage of the couch, in this instance, the south side.  She soon learned that particular piece of real estate was claimed in perpetuity, by Sarah.
Gertie taking advantage of the couch, in this instance, the north side. She soon learned that particular piece of real estate was claimed, in perpetuity, by Sarah.


There’s only one problem with the situation:  Morty had previously staked a claim to the south side of the couch.


Life on the couch... it doesn't get better than this!
Life on the couch… it doesn’t get better than this!


Morty happens to be a peace-loving guy, so he didn’t fight Gertie when she did the hostile take over.   Instead, he resigned himself to his fate:  being forced to seek out other accommodations.

Crabby and I were discussing Gertie’s eviction of Morty from his ‘spot’ the other day.  In response to my comment about how Gertie has really made herself at home, in a most defensive manner, Crabby said “Yeah, but now poor Morty has to sleep on the bed!”

The bed of which Crabby spoke:  We’re not talking about a lowly blanket on the floor, or even a dog bed.  The horrible place Morty must now suffer his days – is the people bed.



Morty clearly hating life when banished to the people bed.
Morty clearly hating life when banished to the people bed.



Remember if you will that Morty presented himself in our driveway, after living for who knows how long on the desert on his own.  His reluctance to cross the threshold to our house supports the theory that even before he found himself alone, he had never been allowed inside a house.  His ability to take care of himself in harsh conditions made him the most resourceful of all dogs ever taking up residence at Run A Muck Ranch.  Given that history, one could come to the logical conclusion that Morty was a hardened and noble beast, able to make do with whatever accommodation were offered.


The Noble Beast
The Noble Beast, at home in the wilderness.  


One would be wrong.


Morty's current idea of roughing it.
Morty’s current idea of roughing it.

It used to be we thought, in the event of a Zombie Apocalypse, Morty, out of all the dogs, would be OK.

Now, were not so sure.

Where did we go wrong?

Woo Hoo! T’is the Season!

The temperatures have fallen, making the mornings cooler.  Sunday Family Desert Walk Season has officially begun!   As you can see by the portlyness of Hector's posterior, it didn't come soon enough!
The temperatures have fallen, making the mornings cooler. Sunday Family Desert Walk Season has officially begun!
As you can see by the portliness of Hector’s posterior, it didn’t come soon enough!


As an added bonus, with all the rain we got, the water holes are all full!  Maybe we can get enough Crazy Wet  Emmi Faces to make a calendar!





An Actual, Real, Scary Moment

This very thing could have happened in the back yard.   You get used to it.  For that reason, after all the shouting stopped, we continued our romp, but in an area away from the snake.

Living in a box isn’t living.  All we can do is hope the world is kind enough to allow us to give the kids as much fun as we can, whenever we can.    That being said, we WILL freak out when we find a biting snake between 2 of our kids, not more than 3 feet away from them!

I assure you, we encounter fewer Rattlesnakes on the desert with the dogs than I personally do at work.  There are days I’m up close and personal with more than 1.


I Saved a Life Today

For reasons I still can’t figure out, I got done early from work today.

When I got home, I decided to water my garden.  It’s a small garden, consisting of a mix of dead, live and mutilated herbs, geraniums, roses and jasmines.  In the winter, it’s beautiful.  In the summer it’s a buffet table for anything with over sized incisors.

I don’t remember the last time I watered, and things were pretty dry, so I had the hose on full-bore, filling each pot to capacity, then doing it again, several times.

It was when I was watering the Angel Wing Jasmine that, from the recesses of what I thought was a crack caused by soil dryness, a Kangaroo Rat floated to the surface.  He was in what appeared to be convulsions, then he was still.  So very still.


Not the actual critter, but one of his kindred.
Not the actual critter, but one of his kindred.


I realized, to my horror, that I had drowned an innocent Kangaroo Rat.  But death was only seconds ago!  There was still time to bring him back!

I’m not sure exactly why I decided inside the house was the best place to perform heroic measures, but inside I went, passing The Hoard, most notably, Mortimer, who looked at me with imploring eyes, as if to say, “Hey Ma, can I have that?”.


I'm here to help Mom!
I’m here to help Mom!


I held the little patient upside down over a towel on the counter, and stroked his sides to help drain any ingested water.  I then laid him on his side, performing a much smaller and gentler CPR than would be used on dogs.  There was no response.  I felt no pulse.

Now, Reader, keep in mind, this little Kangaroo Rat wasn’t hurting anyone.  He was simply hanging out at home when I came by and drowned him.    I  was responsible for the death of another being.  I felt horrible.  The tears were welling in my eyes.  Morty was jumping up and down on the back door reminding me that he would be more than happy to take care of disposal of the tiny body.  I was a mess.  And I went to a very dark place.

Yes, I performed mouth to mouse resuscitation, on a Kangaroo Rat.


Mock me all you want folks, but after about 10 seconds, there was movement in my hands.  Upon feeling the movement, I gently laid the little patient on the towel I set on the counter.  That was also the point I realized bringing the Kangaroo Rat inside the house was probably not the best of ideas.

Turns out, Kangaroo Rats brought back from the dead recover pretty fast.  The little bugger made it to the sink, over the counter, and using the freezer as a spring-board, was behind the love seat in an instant.

A loose Kangaroo Rat in the house, to The Hoard, would make me the Best Mom Everrrr!  To Crabby, well, I’m not so sure he would even come in the house if he knew a rodent was about.

About a half hour later, Kangaroo Rat caught, I returned him to his hole in my Angel Wing jasmine pot, with the suggestion that he move into the Geranium tub.  The Geraniums had been decimated by the rabbits long ago, and their tub was a safer location for any Kangaroo Rat seeking shelter since there’s no point in watering dead plants.

I saved a life today.  That I was the one that snuffed that life… well…  all’s well that ends well!

Be safe Run A Muck Ranch Kangaroo Rat!  Live Long and Prosper!