Updated: Jan 30
Our little man @davetheyorkie is a character to say the least. Among other things he is a veggie-loving pescatarian insectivore. His primary diet consists of fish, fruits, vegetables, and the odd CBD doggie cookie to settle him down when the world is just way too exciting.
He loves bugs too, and worms, and moths, and beatles — especially the squishy or crunchy ones that provide an extra sensory experience.
At this time of year, as late summer folds into fall, the garden is a virtual smorgasbord of fruits and vegetables, and creepy, crawly, flying things to chase, take down and eat.
He knows instinctively, that our resident birds and squirrels are not to be chased or otherwise disturbed, so he leaves them to their own even when I’m not looking. They in turn are not afraid of Dave, and will come within inches of him sunning himself on the pavers.
Dave is quite short, standing just 9.5” tall at his shoulder, and he weighs in at a whopping 7.5lbs. Most often I know where he is by watching for movement among the greenery, or for rustling low down in the bushes. His whiff of a tail pokes through now and then, providing certainty that it is Dave down below and not a racoon or a cat, or a bird.
What he lacks in stature, he makes up in cuteness and dogged determination. He can devastate a lawn in search of Japanese beetle grubs, on par with a racoon — rolling back turf and digging holes so deep that the mud stretches clear past his ears to the top of his head.
He can scale a 24” high garden bed blindly, with ease from below, re-organizing his body in-flight on approach, so that all four legs land squarely on terra firma without crushing any growing things.
He can pick individual cherry tomatoes at the peak of ripeness, choosing just one from a crowded vine but not damazing its neighbours. He loves harvesting (or stealing stealthily from the harvest basket) and chowing down on garlic and onions, broccoli, corn (especially corn, though he has a hard time reaching it), shallots, eggplant, peppers, mushrooms, lettuce and spinach, herbs of all sorts, carrots, beans, peas, fennel, brussel sprouts, cabbage, and potatoes. Dave really loves potatoes.
Most of all though, Dave loves me. We are true garden buddies.
He is especially lovable during our early morning scouts, when his puppy-cut coat is drenched from wandering through dewy vegetable and perennial beds far taller than he — his already tiny body shrinking virtually by half. He runs ahead to find and point out anything new that transpired during the night, stopping and turning frequently to make sure I am following his lead.
He makes me belly laugh, seemingly on purpose, with his antics. What a sight we must be, the two of us chasing each other through the garden, along the narrow paths his tiny paws have worn into the grass along the fence.
Now that our three children are around less and less, Dave sticks closer and closer by my side. He may do so because there is more quiet and free space around me now, but I think he knows intuitively that there is room in my mummy heart that can only be filled-up with tiny person cuteness and unconditional love.
For sure Dave qualifies as a tiny person, and I couldn’t love him more than I do. We all love him. As my husband is wont to say, “Dave won the pet lottery when our children chose him over his puppy siblings”
Animals, like Mother Nature are so very, very wise, and so very intuitive. This applies equally to animals, vegetables, trees, insects, fungi, and yes Yorkies. We can see this clearly when we slow down, focus openly and completely, and pay attention to patterns and nuance for longer than a moment.
Permaculture founder Bill Mollison suggested that we “observe plants and animals in all their functions (in nature, over time), practicing protracted and thoughtful observation”
I observe Dave, and Dave observes me, and together we are the perfect little garden family.
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