Farm Stories (or, "The Chronicles of Newman")

The Persistent Pile. A farm story.


My dog Sullivan is a big black lab mixed with something.  He’s a good dog but he has a few problems; mostly, he’s old.  There seems to be a lot of that going around these days.  And being old, he doesn’t always get a lot of warning when he has to poop.  A few weeks ago he made it just outside the dog door and pooped on the welcome mat.  Then it rained.   [read full story]

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Getting Rid of Fluffy


Why do people give up their animals, and where do the animals go?  A look at this phenomenon from all sides.  [read full story]

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A Peaceable Kingdom


Raise your hands, now – how many of you actually can’t get to sleep at night until your dog or cat is snugly in bed with you?  How many of you have had to toss your partner onto the couch because “there are too many bodies for this bed”?  Who among you would rather hang out with your friends’ pets at a party than try to meet new folks?  I thought so. So take it up a notch or three and you might just land on a farm. [read full story]

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Concierge Dogs


sam-sq-snowThese are working dogs. Livestock guardian dogs. Big, white, fluffy, smiling, cute, huggable, and utterly lethal to predators. Travel anywhere in farmland and you will see these big white dogs dotting the countryside. Laying down. Taking a sunbath. Stretched out and utterly relaxed. On vacation. “My God, they’re all asleep at the wheel”, a casual observer might say. You of little faith, you have not seen a slumbering LGD rise up in a millisecond to address an issue with tiger-like ferocity. [read the full story]

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The Cow Party


cows-sqIn these times of long, long political discussions, campaigning and elections, post-elections campaigning, protests, post-mortem essays, and all the rest — I offer you a tale about cows. Yes, cows. “Really? The country is in a state of immense change and she wants to talk about bovines???” Read on, my fellow Americans, if you wish to be enlightened. [read more]

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