My Dog, Ruby

Ruby is a great dog; she’s my dog. I got Ruby in January of 2005 as a little puppy. At the time in my life I needed a companion and a loyal friend.

She is a loving, obnoxious canine with OCD. An Australian Shepherd, she is a working dog, and loves to play ball. I’ve never seen a dog play fetch like this dog. This is a photo blog of Roobs.

The ball.
Next to my bed.
Getting to go on the feed wagon.
A good shake after a Christmas Bath.
Jack and Ruby on the feed wagon together.
Ruby and Jack on a beautiful day.
Ruby wanting to come in.
Her other favorite pastime -- chewing her bone.
Photo bomb -- Ruby is also a garbage/begger dog.
Always my companion.

A Christmas Bath for Ruby

I love my dog. Ruby is smart, obedient and eager to please. She’s beautiful, intense and energetic and sometimes obnoxious, but she’s very loveable. And when Australian Shepherds are described, loyal companion is always part of the discussion. She is “my” dog. She follows me everywhere. Any room I’m in, so is she. I go into the bathroom, she follows. I lie on the couch, she’s next to me. In my office, she’s curled up next to my chair. That kind of devotion is both annoying and endearing.

I got Ruby when she was 8 weeks old in January of 2005. As a little pup, she wanted to play and please. At the time, I was single and needing a friend, a running buddy, a companion full of energy, who could go on a run and be my loyal sidekick. Ruby was that wonderful friend. I promptly took her to obedience training and she excelled, like most dogs of her breed. I planned to take her to agility training and to make her a dog full of tricks.

Then, ironically, my life changed in a good way when I met my human partner in life. I decided a good dog with good obedience skills and a few tricks was perfect.

Ruby is a beautiful dog—Red Tri Color Australian Shepherd. Her beauty is derived mostly from her spectacular coat. Her breed was developed as a working heard dog; breeder selection had everything to do with how the dogs functioned – how smart and independent they were while being obedient. Other characteristics included hardiness – western cattle and sheep raisers needed dogs that would withstand the brutal climate swings and rugged terrain. And that is how their beautiful coat came to be.

She doesn’t shed too badly for a long-haired dog. But bathing this dog is a chore. We joke that she needs a “Christmas Bath” because that’s about as often as she gets a proper bath. In the summer, we just hose her down with the spray nozzle of the water hose.

But the winter is a different story. And she has been stinking up the joint for weeks now. So I finally broke down and bathed her tonight.

Step 1. Brush out some of that undercoat. (some tangles have to be cut out)

It takes many gallons of water to get her wet all the way through.

Then it takes a lot of soap to get her lathered up. Then it takes a very long time and lots more water to rinse.

And it takes about 6-10 hours for her to dry, including many shakes.

For now she’s sleeping it off.

She smells so much better now. I love my dog. And when she is freshly bathed, she is gorgeous.

Stock Tank on a Still Day

It was a beautiful day in Arcadia today. Crisp, cool, but not cold, sunny and clear.

I snapped this beautiful shot around 5 p.m. today. This tank is a favorite subject/backdrop in many of my photos. The stillness is very unusual, thankfully I had my trusty iPhone.

Jack Ruby ... the farm dogs. Their names are fitting since they are like assassins when they are together.

I turned about 45 degrees to my left to snap this shot.

Just like Forrest Gump said, it's like two skys--one on top of the other.

Then Jack happened.

This dog ... blissfully ignorant of the fact that I was trying to take a pretty photo.
Wow ... just wow.

Arcadia is beautiful, even in the winter.

If the Dog/Cat Could Sass

Today I snapped a few photos of my pets. I look at them and wonder what they would be saying if they could sass-mouth me First off I’m glad Ruby can’t talk. She could tell some good stories on me. [Although the pet with the most stories happens to be in kitty heaven, (God rest your feline soul, Sky).]

Ruby is back from a week in doggie utopia at the ranch.

"Please don't make me take a Christmas Bath!"

This morning I caught a glimpse of this and had to do a U-turn to capture it on camera. I tried to get it on my good camera, but the batteries were out, so trusty iPhone it was.

"Stupid neighbor dog ... I have no idea why she insist on chasing the squirrels."

I came around from the other entry on the north end of the room. [ignore lamp shades, I was changing the light bulbs in the chandelier.]

"Yeah -- I'm on the table. So? "

I tried to work with Pussums, getting her to pose.

"Not now, I'm trying to get my vitamin D for the day and the days are short. Seriously? You're killing me with the photos. You've got to be the picture-takingest cat mom ever."
"I give up. Take my picture. But I'm not going to look you in the eye. You're getting the no-stare treatment."

Playing Cat and Dog

I had no idea what I was going to write about tonight when I came home from work… then this post magically wrote itself. Jdubs and I were wrapping presents. This is what happens when a 4 year old who can recognize a few letters does for gift tags.

Momma, will you write letters for me?

Then we ditched the packages to play with the cat.

Ah, momma, Pussums wants to play with me.

Then the dog got in on the action, and we played cat and dog and kid for a while.

Ruby: "You wanna piece a me?" Pussums: "Bring it. I can't wait to slap you"

Here’s Ruby trying to be playful. (I wish that darn ornament wasn’t in the way, but you will see it in every frame.)

Pussums: "you are so gonna regret this!"

Pussums is definitely ready to take a swipe at Ruby. Fortunately, for Ruby, those paws are sans claws.

Puss is fired up. Ruby: "I double-dog dare you."

Puss is supremely pissed. If I could hear her kitty voice I think she would say: “oh no you didn’t. No way that’s going to fly up in here.”

Pussums slinks away to provide more "personal" space.

Here’s Ruby with two batteries on her shoulder saying: “I dare you to knock these off.” (very bad reference to a very old Duracell battery commercial.)

Too bad I didn't have the video going to capture the little dance before they both darted up the stairs.

The aftermath of Cat and Dog—the dog pounced at the cat, scooting the tree over 3-4 feet; the cat peeled out on the tree skirt and bolted up the stairs with the dog in hot pursuit. And Jdub’s package is left behind.