Spring has returned. The Earth is like a child that knows poems. ~Rainer Maria Rilke

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Carl, the Strawberry Bandit

Yes, there is a small problem in the garden. For some reason, Carl, our older Corgi, has discovered that Strawberries are delicious little morsels that magically appear on some plants and now he is rooting for them everywhere, like a little Javalina... only he's smarter than the average pig... and he's sly.
If you click on the photo above, you will see him PRETENDING he is just cruising around looking for a bug or a leaf. He acts like he's not interested in much of anything but this is just a ploy... He's really heading for THE STRAWBERRY PLANT.
It's the same routine everyday. He has mastered the fine art of deception.
He, nonchalantly, walks over to the pot with the strawberry plants. He sniffs the leaves. He checks to see if anyone is watching.... and then.. in goes the nose. He roots around, finds a strawberry and runs with the stolen goods. Lately, he hasn't even been running away. He just eats the strawberry and sashays away like it's no big deal.
"Hey, little man. Where are you going. I want to talk to you. What's with eating my strawberries?"
"Oh!' Farmlady. I didn't see you." He turns and walks back toward me...
Look at that expression. He is looking at the Strawberries.
"I hope Farmlady didn't see me eat those a minute ago. If I just walk past without stopping, maybe she won't notice that they are gone."
He walked right by them...
That must have taken a lot of self control, thought Farmlady. Then he walked around the container and got a drink of water.
"Carl? Are you eating my strawberries again?" He didn't turn around or look at me. He was acting like he didn't know what Farmlady was talking about. "Carl? Are you bla..bla..bla..blaing my blaberries again?"
Then he fuzzy butts over to Cutter who is barking at the turkey in the drive way.
"Hi Carl. Wanna help me bark at those big birds?"
Carl wasn't too interested. HIS TUMMY WAS FULL!
"No cutter. I just ate the last of the strawberries that Farmlady was going to eat. I'm trying to act like I didn't do it."
"Oh. Strawberries? Where?" as he forgets about the Turkey...
"I want some strawberries too!"
"It's too late. I ate them all" Carl says.
"YOU ATE THEM ALL?" Cutter ran over to Carl and sniffed Carl's mouth.
"Yes, I did."
"You're 'spose to share."
"It was a spur of the moment thing." said Carl, "You have to get them when you can. I can't be saving them for you Cut'. You're big now.You have to get your own."
Cutter looked at Carl and then he decided that this was more than he could take. After a day of going to the vets for shots in the morning and then having the turkey ignore his barks, he was not going to take this "dump on the puppy" stuff anymore. He walked slowly around Carl and then he jumped on Carl's back. They wrestled and ran around the yard until they were exhausted and then they both laid down on the porch and went to sleep.
. Farmlady decided that she would move the strawberries to another place outside the reach of Carl as she had done to another pot of strawberries. If she didn't, she would never have any ripe red strawberries because Carl had even taken to eating them before they turned red. He didn't care if they were unripe. He liked them even when they were white with a little pink on them.She moved the plant and started for the house. Carl and Cutter were laying on the porch.
Farmlady wondered, for a few minutes, about having dogs in her life. She decided that a few strawberries were a small price to pay for the joy of living with these two little Corgis and, as she walked into the house, she heard them both get up and follow her.
Later, after dinner, Farmlady thawed and sweetened some frozen peaches to put on ice cream. Fresh strawberries would have been lovely.... but, as Carl curled up in her lap, watching her eat and waited for the "licking of the ice cream bowl", she decided that life was much more about THIS DOG LYING IN HER LAP than not having fresh strawberries for dessert.  Life was about two little dogs that love their people, think the garden is theirs and sometimes take advantage.... but she wouldn't have it any other way.
Farmlady finished her ice cream, let Carl and Cutter share the little bit of ice cream that was left and curled up on the couch with one dog on each side of her.
She fell asleep  and dreamed about a lovely strawberry field, long and filled with thousands of red berries. She was there with two Corgis running ahead of her, They were jumping into the air and looking back at her as they ran. It was a beautiful dream.


  1. Hmmm - maybe Carl needs a big sister...

  2. Good idea about moving that plant out of harm's way - I mean Carl's reach!
    And about that "licking of the ice cream bowl" ritual - I have a little kitty who likes to do the same - and many's a time I will NOT get up simply because said kitty has made a cozy nest of my lap!
    Ah, what we endure for our beloved pets!

  3. This is a very cute story. Dogs are pretty smart but you were smarter to move the strawberry plant out of harms way. Your photos are great. Have a blessed day. Madeline

  4. my dog gets to lick the ice cream bowl too! Then it's off to bed. She doesn't get into the strawberries but the blueberries are disappearing at an alarming rate...hmmm. cute post Farmlady..;j

  5. would love to wake up from the night mare that is apparently my life right now... maybe tonight I can play in the strawberry fields with cutter and carl and you :)
    Hugs and grits.

  6. Dear Farmlady, Carl sounds like a cool dog; my kinda guy. I laughed when you wrote, “. . . then runs with the stolen goods.” I have a little Tsi tzu girlfriend named Holly who lives around the corner from me. Whenever I’m outside with my Dad he lets me run over to her house to play. Mom says Dad doesn’t LET me go over, he just never remembers to keep a close eye on me. What’s the diff? Even when he watches me I get to run to Holly’s; we play this fun game where I run and he chases me. I always win! The other day I ran over to Holly’s but she was inside so I grabbed one of her toy bones and high-tailed it for home. I had a lovely vision of jumping up on Mom’s lap so she could pretend to wrestle me for my bone and then I could pounce and attack it. But when Dad saw me, his mustache was twitching and he chased me into the house. He called me a poop-head and took my new bone away. I was sad and tried to crawl up on Mommy’s lap but she said I was in big trouble and made me lie on the hard floor.
    I’m glad you don’t get mad at Carl when he gets into your strawberries. I think he’s very smart and will probably find a way to get to them even if you hide them. So, as a reward for being so smart, I think it would be good if you set out a little bowl of cream for him too!! You don’t have to whip it, it’s good just plain. But tell him he’ll have to get to the cream fast or his little brother, Cutter-butt, will lap that up while Carl’s grabbing berries. Please tell him I said, “Good luck on your continued success”. Love, Mugs (Charming Baglady’s favorite girl dog)

  7. Hi! I just found your blog and am really enjoying it. I love your Carl story. I just lost my 14 year old Husky mix and miss her dearly. Your story reminds me of the year my veggies started to go missing out of the garden. The peas seemed the most puzzling. The plants were hardy and blooming, but no peas. Finally my neighbor told me it was Tess. Ever so gently pulling off the pea pod, every last one of them! Finally had to fence the garden off. Then her taste went to my raspberries. Oh well, the memories of that summer with her were worth the loss from the garden. I love the expressions on your baby's faces! :)

  8. Brings back some great memories of our pit bull many,many years ago. That crazy boy loved jalapeno peppers,snapped them right off the plant and ate them on the spot. Love your dogs so much, they are the breed I have wanted for many years. Hopefully a couple of them are in my future some day.

  9. hehe...strawberries are good carl...but you might want to leave a few so you dont get in too much trouble...

  10. What a lovely story! Would make a wonderful children's storybook!
    xo, Cheryl

  11. I have a tulip-eater, who has moved on to the asparagus, and an occasional dandelion (good doggie). Aren't our canine pals the best?


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