sunset from behind the wire

sunset from behind the wire

Friday, August 30, 2013

Old Coyote


No, I don't have a new cat. In fact, I've never had a cat. I'm not a cat person. I just thought that the picture was funny. If I was to get a dog at this stage of my life, I think it would be another Rhodesian Ridgeback. (right)

I had a Ridgeback (named Matt, after General Matthew Ridgeway, US Army - WW2 and Korea).

The South Africans used them to hunt lions. They love to hunt cats including cougars (not sexually predatory women, the wild kind with claws and fangs --- wait ---you know what I mean). Matt loved to tree cats for sport. The cats just sat in the trees and mocked him while he bayed. Then Matt lost interest, left and the cats climbed down. Occasionally he did catch a cat. Rhodesian Ridgebacks are large hounds and they are very strong. If they can take down a lion, a house cat isn't much effort.

Before Matt, my Uncle John found a coyote pup on the mountain and brought him for me to raise. I named him Dusty.

As Dusty grew, his loyalty to me was beyond question and everyone in the area was afraid of him. People wondered what a coyote was doing in a (small farming/ranching) town just hanging out. He used to run next to my bicycle when I rode it. If any other boy issued a taunt, he'd bare fangs and run toward them. That didn't happen often, but often enough that people kept a respectful distance.

Sadly for Dusty, he liked stealing chickens. I'd find a freshly killed chicken on my doorstep every day (uneaten) -- until somebody took exception to that and ended his chicken killing career. Dusty was a coyote and no amount of 'civilizing' would change that.


11 comments:

  1. Never knew you palled around with coyotes. It is all beginning to make sense now. :-)

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    1. I palled around with WoFat too...

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  2. Frankly amazing. I have two dogs, one of whom is a Rhodesian, but have never had a coyote. Was the coyote friendly to you like a dog, or was he kind of wild all the time?

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    1. Dusty only liked ME. He tolerated all others. To me, he was a dog that looked like a coyote. I had a Springer Spaniel named Suzy before I had Dusty and was devoted to her - cool pet. Dusty replaced Suzy and wasn't unlike a Springer to ME. I think part of being a coyote comes with how people react to the coyote. The other thing was being accepted by a coyote pup as a surrogate parent/friend/pack mate.

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    2. I relate coyotes to a certain popular politician who has a base nature that is not in keeping with American values. By doing that, I don't mean to impune coyotes.

      I think that's why this high ranking leader and his spouse (who reminds many of a Sci-Fi character) weren't invited to Bill and Hillary's daughter's wedding. If they'd showed up at Chelsea's wedding they'd have likely stolen the silverware and it would have caused a scene.

      In the same way, coyotes do have some antisocial tendencies, hunting being the main one when they're hunting the easy kill - domestic livestock.

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  3. Ridgebacks are cool, BorderXMcNabb's are Awesome.
    Not a cat fan. Loved to watch coyotes hunting on the home ranch, til they got a little too good at it and started killing yearlings.
    Down to one dog, a Jack Russell X, and that's just sad.

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    1. Jack Russells are among my favorite, but they demand constant attention. You can't go off on vacation and leave most of them with kids, etc. because they're smart and know that you've neglected them.

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  4. When I was a boy I had a coydog. Half coyote half GSD. Loving pet for the family but skittish and shy around strangers. Duke developed a taste for chicken too, which brought that relationship to a quick end.

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    1. They do like Chicken. I found Dusty to be a great pet except for that. I really don't care if strangers don't like my dog/coyote --- in fact, better if they don't. He'd patrol the yard ceaselessly at night and would howl at the moon when it became full, but I always liked that. He could have run off with other coyotes but never did. He stayed with his own pack, and as with your experience, it ended badly.

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