September 22 nd


JERAS Daily Diary Sept.22

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In an attempt to bring more people into our group of friends and supporters, I will try to blog daily…so everyone can see the hard work involved here and maybe we will get the donations we need to survive. All donations go to the animals, I do not get paid.

Today, I rose early, feeling as I always do- like I have the flu. My right hand was also numb, just Lyme neuropathy, but it made piling 10 dogs a little more difficult. I then fed the 9 equines and pig and goat. I picked up dog waste in the yard. I vacuumed the house, fed the dogs, gave them their rawhide, then cooked and ate my breakfast. I cleared a few of the > 500 emails we get daily.

I had been walking all 10 dogs daily, requiring 4 trips up and down the dirt road. I would log about 3 miles myself and I was continually getting my back and shoulder injured by most of the dogs who go ballistic when they see a rabbit or lizard. It was unsustainable. Keeping them in the house and 1/4 acre yard is not stimulating enough- they get bored. I can’t see any use in keeping unhappy animals and try to always consider their emotional well-being. I applied for a small grant to allow us to build a play yard and I am again taking a leap of faith that we will get it, so I went ahead and ordered about $450 in materials and had my neighbor use his tractor to clear 330 feet of planned fence line.

I decided to go with electric mesh- easy to install, so I would not have to break my back driving 30 T posts or hire someone else. We got “Fast fence” from Max Flex and they gave us a 10% discount. I have put the actual mesh fence up over the past few days. I also installed a gate to lead out of the yard. I had to drive 2 T posts to a depth of 2 feet in order to install the gate. Tomorrow, I install another gate to connect Bear’s existing 30 X 80 foot yard to the new “play yard”. Today, I drove about 200 6 inch stakes to hold the bottom “cold” strand to the ground to prevent digging or squeezing under. I connected the new little low impedance charger to a ground pole (copper pipe driven 8 feet into moist soil under one of our trees) and connected it to the new fence and viola- it worked! The fence tester registers 2000 volts, sounds scary, but that is not much compared to the 5000 volts the horse fence registers. I shock myself daily climbing through the fence, and since these chargers pulse, you only get a quick shock.

These Fast Fence electric mesh fences are used at wolf sanctuaries, by dog owners, and often for keeping sheep safe from predators. Once an animal is shocked, they rarely go back to challenge the fence again.

I left all the sage brush in the new yard, so the dogs will be able to hunt lizards and any other game, real or imaginary. If they see a lizard or ground squirrel go down a hole, it turns into hours of digging fun. After I install the last gate tomorrow, I can let them out to play. I will take video.

By the time I gave the horses, burros, sheep and pig their lunch, got tonight’s hay pellets soaking, changed and filled their water tubs and hosed off all the horses (they stood in line for that- they are already growing winter coats and we are still having summer weather), it was 2 PM when I got lunch. As soon as I get off here, I need a shower, then will feed the dogs and catch a quick nap. I slept 6 hours last night, I rarely get more than that.

I still have hundreds of emails to sort through, more animal advocacy issues to post on numerous Facebook pages, some accounting to finish, dogs to medicate and brush teeth, Mocha to play ball with….

Carson is still recovering from his attack of adrenal failure 2 days ago and Patty is confined to the corner of the kitchen since she injured her knee. She screams whenever I leave the house, as only a basenji or basenji mix can. She is on double dose GABA which is an amino acid that helps with anxiety (and seizures) and flower essences….but she still screams due to very severe separation anxiety from years of being shuffled from home to home and shelter to shelter.

See you tomorrow, should you care to come back.


PS: Major breakthrough with Windy. For the first time since arriving 20 months ago, she let me walk up to her and scratch her withers. Before this, I would have to chase her into a tiny corral on order to touch or halter her, which I only subjected her to on a few occasions for hoof trimming.

Categories : News


  1. Debbie Panaretos says:

    God love ya Cathy! Don’t the animals make it all worth it !;)

  2. Cathy Ritlaw says:

    they are very worth it! We just need a broader donor base…thanks

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