Since I am trying to reduce the incidence of mud by once again trying to grow grass in our yard, I closed the dog-door and attempted to limit Murphy's access to squirrels. Ray happily curled up on a chair and slept. Murphy whiled away the hours watching through the glass doors, keeping an eye out for small, furry marauders, alerting us to their presence with an ear-drum shattering shriek every time she spotted one.
Three or four times during the day, in between the raindrops, I let the dogs outside to play (but kept the dog door closed). As they finished and showed up at the back door to get back in, I would ease the door open, point at Murphy an give a firm "STAY."
While poor, pathetic, filthy Pigpen stayed outside, Ray would come in for a quick rubdown. After a few swipes of his tootsies, he would be good to go. Only then would I retrieve more towels to tackle Murphy and her hula skirt.
As the day drew to a close, Murphy staked out the front door in anticipation of her owners' return. She'd never spent more than two nights with us and it was apparent that she thought she was going home. After an hour or two, she gave up and retreated dejectedly to the couch.
Pre-dog, our yard looked like this.
|Backyard, December 2010|
|Backyard, January 2011|
With the arrival of Murphy this weekend, I think I would have to change the description to "nice try" or "there's always next year." (sigh). On the bright side, there's more grass now than in the above two photos.
As for the plants in the top photo, most have given up the ghost and gone to that big green garden in the sky. The upside of that, I can now say with certainty that anything remaining in the yard is just about 100% bomb-proof.