Mink, Two Dogs and a Fire Pit
What do you get when you combine a mink, two dogs and a fire pit? Chaos.
Zoey barked like a maniac. “Poor Ava, she doesn’t get a break…” Ava barked but not in the “rip your head off” tone Zoey has when she’s rough housing. I was on my way to the high tunnel to see if seeds were sprouting when Ava came barrelling at me in her timmy-fell-down-the-well urgency. At our house zoey’s-into-something is likely. Ava’s great at telling me when I need to deal with something and taking me to the problem. Realizing Zoey’s bark graduated from rough housing to ferocious, I picked up the pace. Ava raced between me and the fire pit where Zoey was having a major fit. Not once did the thought that they were trailing a mink cross my mind. I assumed snowshoe hare.
Oh the screaming! I could hear it a hundred feet away. Loud, raspy, desperate, pissed off. A raccoon? No, not pissed off enough. If you’ve ever heard them you know what I mean. They make one of the worst noises in the forest when they’re fighting and this was bad but not that bad. A baby raccoon? It’s too early. Possum? They haven’t come out this far yet and besides, I’ve never heard an angry possum so what do I know. I still wasn’t thinking about a mink but an ermine did come to mind.
Zoey was outside the fire pit still barking like a maniac while Ava stood in the opening, tipping her head back and forth. A mink. Wow can that little critter make a big racket. It screeched a few more times after I arrived then seemed to understand I had control of the situation. When I left to get Steve and the camera the screeching started again. I didn’t make Zoey stop barking and I knew it was unlikely she could get to it in the boulders. Minks kill birds. It has no business being that close to the hen house so the more uncomfortable the dogs could make it the better.
I snapped a few photos and hauled Zoey away by the collar. That girl’s determined. She’s a good guardian. She’s going to be one of those dogs that gets sprayed by skunks multiple times a year and keeps going back. We were 20 feet from the fire pit before her will to disobey broke and she came to the house without a firm voice guiding her. Guiding is a nice word for demanding.