The Fat Ewe Farm 
    and B & B

...organic permaculture farmin' 
  for the lazy you's and
 Bed, Breakfast 'n Bale

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Alex Finds a New Home

Posted by Fluffy on January 13, 2013 at 8:15 PM Comments comments (0)

Alex arrived around Christmas. He was fat and friendly and not afraid of the other cats or the big dogs. As a matter of fact, he was good with all the animals on the farm, including the farmer. Obviously he was some one's house cat because every time the door was opened he was inside or attempting to get inside. Cats are not allowed in the house because I am allergic to them and I do not like the fact that cats cannot be trained to stay off the furniture or beds or kitchen counters or wherever they wish to go. 

After advertising for several weeks on the local internet site, there was still no one claiming poor Alex. Fortunately for him, today, the man who delivers hay and grain, a local natural farmer, offered to take him home. He will either keep him as an inside cat for his own home or his father in law had mentioned that he was looking for a male cat. Either way, I am sure Alex will have a wonderful home and be well cared for. Good luck Alex!

Puppies and Kitties, Oh My!

Posted by Fluffy on January 5, 2013 at 9:50 PM Comments comments (0)

The Fat Ewe Farm now has 5 dogs and 4 cats. 4 of the dogs are young, with Ofcharka and the Maremma puppies being all under a year, Robbie, the border collie at a year and a half and the old dog, at 3 , Harley. The cats are 2 adults and 2 teenagers. Jane, the grey tabby kitten loves the dogs and for some reason, they do not harass her as much as the other cats. Poor Sally is now missing fur in her ruff from the insistent pulling on her or carrying her around, especially by Robbie and Ofcharka. But when nap time comes, the cats cuddle up to the dogs and their thick furry warmth. Jane is still young enough that she kneads the dogs' tummies as she would have her mother's when she was stimulating the milk to drop for her nursing. The dogs barely feel this gentle motion and if they do, they do not seem to mind. Sometimes I feel sorry for the cats on this farm, but Barbie knows when to hold 'em and when to fold 'em, and she gets outta Dodge the moment any dog gets a little too rambunctious with her. I think she is the smartest of them all. You have to admit that they do make nice couples though, don't they?and then there is Alex...the fence sitter. He is the new cat on the farm and ain't gonna cuddle up to no dog, no sir.

The Fat Ewe Cats

Posted by Fluffy on December 27, 2012 at 9:20 PM Comments comments (1)

The Fat Ewe Farm started with two kittens, female sisters, in the spring of 2011. It was cold at night, and although the kittens were outside born and raised, these little girls got to stay inside. It is natural for cats to use a litter box, so training was not even necessary. The problem though, is I am allergic to cat hair (and rabbit). It is OK if I am outside and so is the cat and handling is to a minimum, but inside creates problems. So Sally and Minka lived inside for much of the spring and then were relegated to the outdoors. They slept with Josep, the rough collie, whom all the animals loved dearly, as did I. He and his wife, Anna, were taken by the highway the following year, sniff, sniff, and I still miss them dearly. But, back to the cats. 

Poor Minka met her demise when a wheel of a car ran her over. For some reason, when the car started she did not move. I was saddened deeply at her loss, but not nearly as much as her sister. So, Barbie arrived. Barbie was much more independent than Sally, by far. She was a great mouser too, even at a young age and did not demand to be picked up. She was aloof, but friendly, to me, the perfect kind of cat. Somehow, poor Sally got herself pregnant and had 4 healthy little ones in the old chicken coop on insulation. Daughter rescued them and gave them a blanket and a box for their comfort. After they were about 4 weeks old, I brought them to the front of the house, where they lived in a dog house. All were given away except Jane, who got to remain due to her endearing personality. She was good with the big dogs, too, something that is so important when one mouthful could end her life.


And finally, an orange male cat showed up, obviously a house cat that once belonged to someone. He is very good with the dogs too, which is why he is alive today. A different orange cat came and lived under the horse shed until he starved to death, poor guy. He was petrified of the dogs, though, and would not come out to eat or drink, so what was to be done? Anyhow, Alex is fitting in nicely, but does try to get inside every chance he gets. He gets a gentle lift with a big boot back outside and hopefully he will get the message that on this farm, cats stay outside. The other cats, all being female, quite like having him around, but he is not much older than Jane himself. I did post an ad hoping his owner would claim him, but I get the feeling he was dumped here because people seem to know that I would care for an animal. I am. But Alex is a boy and the other cats are girls and you know what happens....so Alex cannot stay or he cannot stay a boy. And that is the lowdown on the Fat Cats. 

Merry Christmas

Posted by Fluffy on December 24, 2012 at 5:55 PM Comments comments (0)

It is a cold day today. The animals are trying their best to stay warm, but when the cold is incessant as it has been for 2 weeks, they run out of energy and some succumb. Harley, my big Maremma, my beautiful beautiful dog, has cold feet. He stood and lifted his paw and cried twice today. I would bring him inside the house if he would come, but he won't set foot in the door. All the dog's and cat's houses have new straw for them to snuggle into, but the dogs seldom sleep in their houses unless it is very windy, raining or snowing. So poor Harley...what to do for him. I gave the dogs and cats a warm supper tonight and a little later they will get their Christmas eve treats, but I will warm those too. When it is so cold, somethiing warm from the inside will help to generate a bit of heat. Ofcharka and the puppies do not seem to be affected, nor do the sheep. The Cotswolds use their shelter, but all the rest stay outside even in the snow. Where they were laying all night melts from their body heat and creates a depression in the snow that has fallen around them. They are well insulated. 


The little potbelly pigs stay in their shelter almost all of the time, tucked under a big layer of straw. The goats huddle together in their dog igloo houses. Yesterday there were 4 goats in one house. I was amazed. First Sarah came out and she is a half grown full size goat so I thought there would not be room for anyone else, but then two little girls and their mom also came out of the same house. They have a larger shelter but they prefer the warmth of cuddling together. When they come out it is to eat, but they shiver the whole time. The llamas also shiver so they eat in the kush position, that is with their legs tucked under neath. The horses have even been sleeping in their shelter for the first time this winter. The chickens only come out to eat since their food is outside. The ducks and geese are less affected it seems and still bathe even though the water freezes immediately. They will even bath in slush, silly things. I have been sprinkling fresh straw and hay for them though, so they can get some relief from the cold ground. The big white Embden geese are actually using their shelter for the first time this winter too. 


The critters on the Fat Ewe are a wonder, like all life is. They are beautiful to behold and remarkable in their ways, uniquely different even within their species. I am truly blessed to be the steward of this farm, to provide their care and oversee their welfare. I love them all, even the chickens. I have watched them grown from babies for the most part and to me, they are like children in a way. This Christmas I am not sad to be alone. The wood stove is warm and I have the love of all my four legged and two legged friends to keep me happy. I visited my friends and family and celebrated several times with them earlier this month, so this day is only a day, but it is a special day. The reason of the season is to learn to love and be loved. May each of you be as blessed as I feel. May each of you also find peace in your hearts and share the love of the universe and the Creator's magnificent world. May your heart be happy and your spirit filled with joy. Bless you my friends and family. Bless you and have a very Merry Christmas.

The Cat Came Back

Posted by Fluffy on December 24, 2012 at 2:15 AM Comments comments (0)

Word some how gets out. I love animals. People around here generally know that so they drop off unwanted cats and dogs around my yard, maybe half way down the driveway. This is the second cat...the first one died under the horse shed, too afraid of big dogs to ever venture out and even eat. City cats that have lived indoors all their lives are not good on the farm with 5 big dogs and other cats. They do not have any social skills or survival skills. 


The cat that arrived the day before yesterday is a nice guy with beautiful green eyes. He is not neutered and is a young cat,maybe almost a year old. He is good with the other cats and even great with the dogs, which is his own lifesaving skill. The dogs tend to leave him alone for the most part. He wants to come in the house, so I am quite sure he was a house cat, but he is staying outside with the other cats. I put a found ad out, but no takers, so I think he was deliberately 'lost'. Poor guy. Anyone want a pretty kitty?

Barbie

Posted by Fluffy on November 24, 2012 at 2:00 AM Comments comments (0)

Barbie is a nice cat, not too friendly, but not wild. When she is hungry, she comes to me, but otherwise, she keeps her distance. On the rare occasion, she will come to be petted and she avoids the dogs, especially lately. The other night when I gave the dogs some bread, Barbie thought she would help herself to a piece of Harley's, so he bit her and shook her. She growled and ran under a vehicle. I was afraid he hurt her, so went to get the flashlight and find her, but of course she was gone when I got back. The dogs led me to her in the barn and upon examination, there was not broken skin. I guess Harley was just letting her know that cats stealing his bread was not acceptable. 

Barbie is a good mouser and hunter, but she never brings mice home. I do not see her with them, but I know she is in the barn and other old buildings a fair bit, because I see her exiting them. I have no idea where she sleeps. Quite often Sally sleeps with Ofcharka. He must seem like on giant warm teddy bear to her. Barbie doesn't sleep with anyone now, though she used to curl up with Joseph when he was here. I still miss him sorely and I bet Barbie does too. She did not meet the tom cat that Sally did either, because she has never had a litter of kitten, thank goodness. I have no idea where the tom cat came from, but hope he does not come back. 

Barbie was named after my good friend, a lady who is sweet and loving, just like the kitty.She likes to come for long walks with the dogs and me. Silly cat!

Robbie and Sally

Posted by Fluffy on November 20, 2012 at 9:25 PM Comments comments (2)

Robbie is just over a year old, a pure bred border collie, a herding dog that is active, energetic and must be working. He works on Sally when he is not supposed to, but I am afraid that he will hurt her. Today, Robbie was bad. He was chasing Sally, then he would get her down and hold her there and sort of bite her as he does on his toys, a good squeeze with the teeth, only when my fingers have been accidently part of his target, it hurts. So I know Sally is being hurt. Robbie does not know she is hurting because she doesn't cry out, silly cat. Instead she goes limp, like a rag doll. Ofcharka picks her up and carries her then. He is so big he could easily hurt her. Last night, Harley bit Barbie when she tried to steal a bit of his food. Hmmm, the dogs tolerate the cats, but they are not nice to them. I am going to buy a shock collar for Ofcharka and Robbie to remotely shock them when they bite Sally, and for Robbie when he jumps the fence and herds the llamas or horses. 

I made two dog shelters with straw bale houses for the colder weather out of the standing chicken tractors that are parked for the winter. The turkeys were in one. It is 16 by 8, large enough for a makeshift kennel for Robbie when I go to visit the coast in a couple of weeks. The Maremmas curled up inside the former turkey house and fell asleep. I am worried about the dogs and cats when it is minus 40. Hopefully if the puppies curl up with Ofcharka or Harley, they will be alright keeping one another warm. Sally curls up with Ofcharka too and Robbie sleeps inside. When I am away though, he will be outside for 8 hours tied up to the turkey shelter, where he will be able to go in or out and hopefully keep out of trouble. Hopefully, that is, if Sally does not venture in. Bad Robbie.

The Other Kitten

Posted by Fluffy on October 6, 2012 at 11:00 AM Comments comments (1)

The black and white kitten is very cute, but very tiny. Her mother was also very tiny and even now is a small cat. The black and white kitten does not yet have a name. Nothing has really come to me, which is unusual. The kittens both have bad habits of going under vehicles and not moving when the horn blows or the motor starts. Yesterday, I saw the black and white kitten go under the worker's van and not come out. She had climbed up on the motor. We opened the hood and sure enough, there she was. The men were just getting ready to leave and the kittne would certainly have died had I not spotted her a bit earlier. Her sister, Jane, also goes under vehicles and does not move when they are started. Yesterday, I took the car to town to go to the bank and she was under it. As I drove away, she still had not moved. I now drive extremely slowly when I start in case one of the kittens is under the car. 

The black and white kitten meows a lot. I do not like that. She wants something and follows me around, climbing on whatever she can to get closer to me. I got frustrated with her yesterday as I was trying to put the chickens to bed and she was frightening them off, so I lifted her with my boot, not kicked her, but replaced her from where she was. She did not like that and took off, finally. I hoped the kittens would be aloof and non demanding, but the black and white one is the opposite and with me NOT being a cat person, I think she would be best off in a home where she will get tons of attention. I have tried to rehome her a couple of times when visitors have fallen in love with her, but they did not want to take her home, darn. She is cute though.

Joseph and the Cats

Posted by Fluffy on October 1, 2012 at 1:25 AM Comments comments (0)

Joseph is a gentle soul. He chases cats and birds, but secretly he likes them and they love him. Last winter, Sally and Barbie slept with Joseph. There were other dogs here, but Joseph was the dog of choice. He allowed them to curl up in the warm spot near his rough. I don't know if they purred for him or not, but they surely seemed content. 

Now Sally's little girls are modeling after their mother and distant Aunt. Barbie is not related and is of a whole different personality than Sally. One of Sally's girls is just like her and the other must take after her father. But all of them love Joseph. Joseph sleeps inside now because he cannot be trusted yet. He is getting out of the fence and I have yet to discover his secret escape, but he cannot get back in . Harley and Robbie jump the fence, leaving Joseph out on the other side. Should a pack of coyotes come by, he would be a target. Robbie sleeps inside too because he would be out chasing something all night long and Ella comes in because she is an indiscriminate barker. The cats do not curl up to Ofcharka or Harley so I wonder what they will do when it gets cold out. In the meantime, they are loving Joseph. Me too.

Well, Well, Look Who Has Come to Dinner

Posted by Fluffy on September 27, 2012 at 2:15 AM Comments comments (0)

Sally cat came here last year. When my daughter was visiting, I mentioned I would be looking for kitttens so they could grow up with the dogs. She found some ad someplace and since it was very close, we drove over to take a look and came home with two kittens. Sally and her sister had to live in the house because it was cold outside, so I got a litter box for them and a cardboard box and while they were babies, they got to play near the kitchen. Unfortunately, a visitor ran over the sister, leaving only Sally, so I got Barbie. Barbie is not unfriendly, just aloof. She prefers not to be picked up and seldom tries to come inside, while Sally sneaks in often. Now, so do her daughters. 

Sally was not of much use as a farm cat, preferring sit and look pretty in her tree house basket (a safe haven from the other critters on the farm). The grey tabby kitten is a good farm kitten, but the black and white kitten is much like her mother. Well, well. Today I saw Sally trotting across the yard with a mouse in her mouth. She was traveling with intent because Joseph, who likes mousies himself, was wondering what she had and was on his way to find out. She arrived at the feet of her little black and white baby, plopped the mouse down and ran under the car to decoy Joseph while the kitten gobbled up the mouse. She pretty near swallowed it whole and I barely caught the last foot as she swallowed him down. So, Sally can catch mice if she tries and is motivated. I have not seen her do that for the other kitten, now named Jane. Jane catches her own...or does she?


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