SISTERS FOREVER

        BY ABBY 

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Human Epik Journeys

Abby and Keeper explore their prairie home . . . . together

"Whatcha got?"

"Whereíd ya get it?"

"How many ya got?"

"Give Ďem to all to me!!!"

"I want Ďem!!!!"

Now those sound like normal things to say. At least thatís what I thought. 

But my sister Keeper wouldnít give me what sheíd found like sheís supposed to. So I had to chase her down a hill and box her up against a fence. And then I had to fight her for it and then Rick came running down the hill and told us to break it up and when Keeper obeyed him Ė not too smart on her part Ė I grabbed it!!!

And youíll never guess what it was. Never!!! 

There we was, way, way out in the hills, on an Epik Journey and Keeper found, in the middle of a field, a deer ear. Dried out just like the pigs ears that Carol and Rick give us.

And I wanted it real bad cause I love eating ears and because Keeper had it and I didnít. So when Keeper stopped fighting cause Rick asked I grabbed it and ran off and then I ate it.

I love Ė just love Ė eating ears.

Anyways, right now, as Iím dictating this, weíre way up in the hills. And thereís some deer around here somewheres!!! Keeper and me is running back and forth cause we can smell them real good and weíre trying to figure out where they are. 

I swear they wuz just here!! I know it!!! 

Trouble, together . . . .

But Rick keeps clapping his hands every few minutes as we move higher into the hills and Iíll bet heís letting them deer know weíre coming!!! That Rick sure is dumb. We could probably catch lots of deer if heíd just be quiet.

We were on another Epik Journey earlier and we almost captured a moose!!!!

We was down in the woods near the house, getting ready to cross the creek when there it was, a big moose!!

We snuck right up on it without even knowing it cause we were coming out of the trees and it was getting a drink in the creek.

Well, let me tell you, I went charging down to capture him but boy oh boy was that moose ever a big honker. He had to be seven stories high.

Honest!!!

I looked back to see where Keeper was cause maybe I might have needed some help given the unexpected size of the creature but Rick was holding Keeper back !! And there was that dumb old Carol yelling at me to come back. I looked back at the seven story moose and well, you know . . . .with no reinforcements arriving I decided to let that moose get away. He went running into the woods and I watched him go cause he was too big to capture without reinforcements. 

Rick said that was a small one. He says thereís a much bigger one that also lives in the valley. He was in the Paulaís backyard, our neighbour, a few mornings ago. Keeper barked at him when we got let out in the morning and he ran away.

Abby and Keeper, cooling down in the Kananaskis backcountry together

But there is sure deer around. And theyíre right around here . . . . somewheres anyway.

Keeper and me chased some out of the yard the other day. 

But one day there was one with horns on his head standing just on the other side of our fence and he wouldnít run even when we charged him and barked at him. Cheeky guy Iíll tell you because, naturally, everything except for mooses are afraid of us on account of our ferocity. Finally he just walked off.

Lucky for him we couldnít get at him because of that fence those humans built.

Weíre still looking for deer but we are having problems on account of all the cows that are all over the place. We got lots of cows where we are and they are really big too. And there are so many of them that we exercise our brain cells a bit and figure we better walk by them pretty quiet so we donít get them upset.

I know how to run under fences but Keeper only knows how to run into fences.

One time we were running and I was in the lead and I ran under the fence and she bounced off the barbed wire pretty hard cause she didnít duck.

That Keeper, sheís my sister but maybe not too experienced in rural ways.

So if we had to run away from cows my sister Keeper would probably get squished up against a fence cause sheís not smart enough yet to go through the barbed wire.

Keeper and Abby, up high in January to Chester Lake area

I guess I didnít tell you about Keeper. Sheís a dog like me and even a Golden Retriever like me. Sheís 15 months old and Iím 13 months old. She used to live in town but her family didnít want her. The kids in the family ignored her, the father was always working and the mother didnít want to be Keeperís mother.

So Keeper sat in their small backyard by herself all day with nothing to do. 

But the mother and father knew they needed to find a home for Keeper so they asked the vet to find Keeper a new home. And so Rick and Carol heard about Keeper and went and got her the same day.

We were friends from the start Ė unless Keeper has something like a moose ear that I want. Then I go take it from her which I can do cause Iím the dominant one. 

I like being a dog cause I donít have to share with my sister or be polite or anything civilized.

But Keeper is getting a little uppity lately, like sheís getting confidence or something, and when weíve been playing sometimes she beats me up a bit. And a few days ago she took something away from me!!!

I am hopeful this disturbing trend will not continue.

But thatís just normal girl stuff.

Keeper and Abby, depending on each other in the forbidding forest

I chased a hawk the other day.

Hawks like to fly low over our field, trying to steal our mice. They just sort of hover in the wind and if they see something they like for supper they fold their wings and dive  to the ground and stab it with their talons. 

So this hawk was hovering over our field and ignoring me and since I love kites and jumping for kites I ran up behind him and he heard me and turned around and looked at me like I was crazy. I chased him anyway but the fence got in the way and he made a clean getaway.

Do you think a hawk is different than a kite?

Oh yeah, the fence. Rick and Carol fenced our four acres and now Keeper and I canít get out and go on solo Epik Journies in the valley. But we get to be outside by ourselves and we donít hafta wear a leash anymore so thatís good.

Also, the hysterical Carol and Rick donít yell my name out the door so much anymore and they donít worry about where I am.

Always something to see . . . . . together

I love summer but it gets awfully hot. Iím glad Rick and Carol bought a pool for Keeper and me. They fill it full of water then they toss rocks in it for me to dive for. I hold my breath and close my eyes and go under water with my head and feel for the rocks with my nose. When I find one I pick it up with my mouth and come up. Then I blow the water out of my nose and chew the rock for a bit. Then I spit it out over the side of the pool. Then I do the whole thing again. I could do that for hours but Rick doesnít want to throw rocks for hours. 

He is very selfish.

Keeper comes in the pool too and Rick gives her a rock and she just chews it and stands around in the water then she spits the rock out.

But I sure like the pool and I like diving for rocks.

 

Happiness is sharing the prairie with someone . . . . 

When we go on Epik Journies like today and its awfully hot we go up in the hills and into the forest where itís cooler but even then it sure is great to come back to the mucky stream near our house so we can lay in the mud. 

Keeper and me stretch right out and get our bellies nice and cool then we stretch out some more and put our chins in the muck and close our eyes cause its so nice.

When we leave the stream Rick and Carol try to run away from us because we like to shake ourselves off and the muck goes all over them. We like the muck so I donít know what their problem is. And when we get back to the house we have to get hosed off so that isnít much fun.

Some day you will have to come and visit us like the kids next door come to see us. They throw the balls we have, spray their squirt guns at us and feed us crabapples. Carol made them stop the crabapple feeding because she said we would get "the trots," whatever that is. Anyway, I donít think I got no "trots" lately cause I would probably have figured it out by now being pretty smart for a dog.

Keeper barks more than me. I like horses and I like people but I donít like people on horses so I bark at them when they go by. 

I didnít even know I could bark until that happened the first time. Then I went "Bark!! Bark! Barooooo!!!" and I scared myself so I didnít do it again. Not until a horse and rider goes by.

When Keeper first came to our house I got excited when she barked cause I thought she was really barking at something important but as it turns out she barks mostly when nothing is there. 

When someone does come to our driveway we get our bums wagging and go say hello. Obviously strangers are people to be nice to and not to bark at. But Iím not sure why Keeper barks at nothing.

Keeper and Abby on the prowl . . . . 

Anyways, we have given up on finding them deer. They made a clean getaway. Instead weíve been up on top of a hill Ďsploringí through the forest that is there. Now weíre out on an open spot. We can see the mountains to the west, our house way to the south, and the city way to the north. We are pretty high up and the valley is open for miles in either direction.

Keeper and I are studying a coyote in the valley as he does his hunting. The cows are ignoring the coyote. Cows arenít afraid of too much but there was a cougar in the valley a few weeks ago and it ate some cows. So cows are afraid of cougars. But not much else.

There is lots of bones from cows and deer and such in the valley. We find skulls all the time. 

The valley is about life and death and the seasons. Pretty soon the farmer will take the cows from the valley and put them near his home where he can feed them in the winter. 

Then we can go on Epik Journies and not worry about cows and Keeper wonít get pushed against a fence by one.

Well, thatís about it from here. Except Keeper upchucked in Rickís truck when we went on a long trip to see his dad. But thatís not worth talking about because it didnít taste very good. Otherwise nothing is happening.

Maybe weíll see you sometime.

Farewell from my place.

Abby

Abby and Keeper stay alert for happenings in their valley