They enjoy the garden too!

Yesterday’s video of Spaz chasing the birds got me to thinking how much my pets enjoy the gardens I’ve created around our home. Gardening with pets can be a challenge at best, but the joy they bring to our lives has it’s rewards. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not happy when the dogs dig holes in my yard or the cat lays on one of my favorite plants, but for the most part they really do very little damage that is irreparable to my garden. Holes can be filled in, plants will bounce back if not this year than the next and life will go on. Just as I enjoy sitting on my patio enjoying the sights, sounds and fragrances of the gardens, so do my dogs and cat. Spaz the terrier spends the entire day from sunrise to sunset exploring the gardens and she is very careful to weave in and out around my plantings. She also enjoys the excitement of chasing the birds, squirrels, mice or whatever else happens to wander into her domain. My beagle “Misty” enjoys lounging in the grass under the trees as well as sitting on the bench in my Arbor Garden. Which is funny, because I think my dogs and cat get more pleasure out of the garden then I do at times. While their exploring and using their five senses to absorb everything around them, I’m too busy thinking about what needs to be done next instead of just sitting back and relaxing. The cat “Mooch” spends the majority of his time in the front yard garden beds because Spaz and him haven’t come to a understanding yet. He loves to lay in the mulch under my Butterfly Bush, drink out of the birdbath, and sleep behind the daylillies in the Border Bed. The benefits are he keeps the squirrels and rabbits from visiting my garden and devouring my plants. In addition he also chases other cats away from his territory which means my beds aren’t being used as large litter boxes by the neighborhood cats and the funny part is he doesn’t do it either. All of my pets were rescue animals. We adopted Misty from the SPCA ten years ago this month, the cat was a stray that I fed and he stayed, and we got Spaz from the SPCA February of this year. We adopted her shortly after we lost our terrier mix Pepper last fall. Pepper was a rescue dog as well, my dad saved him from abuse in Ohio about 8 years ago and gave him to us. I can’t imagine what our lives would be like without these little members of our family. They give us unconditional love and affection on a daily basis. Our lives are richer because of them.

19 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Meadowview Thymes on July 28, 2008 at 3:30 pm

    I don’t have any pets–so thanks so sharing yours! They are all adorable!


  2. Posted by ChrisND on July 28, 2008 at 3:43 pm

    It’s great that you could give some rescue animal such a nice home and garden…working with pets in the garden has challenges, but it is also rewarding. We get so many great moments with our pet in the garden.


  3. Posted by tina on July 28, 2008 at 4:59 pm

    Pets and gardens just go together so well. I have three dogs (rescues) and a stray cat I adopted. They do bring good benefits but I have to put up fences to keep the dogs from trampling the plants. Sigh. Your beagle looks just like my mother’s in Maine. I love the names!

    You’re welcomed on the comments. I like to talk-sometimes a bit overly much but that is me. I enjoy your blog.


  4. Posted by Naturegirl on July 28, 2008 at 6:55 pm

    Oh YES my felines complete me! Good for my heart and soul! I can’t ever imagine my life without pets! They have come and gone…grew wings..and then the shelter always has a wee heart waiting for a good home. All my pets were from our local shelter too!
    I love to see the garden through my cats eyes…I’m always crawling on my belly like a reptile trying to get THE BEST Image. We LOVe our pets!
    ^.^ NG


  5. Posted by Nancy J. Bond on July 28, 2008 at 7:06 pm

    It’s wonderful that you are so generous with your pets and gardens. As it should be, of course. I remember one of my cats I had in high school used to sleep away entire summer afternoons in a little “nest” she flattened down under my mother’s Tiger Lilies. πŸ™‚


  6. Posted by Anna on July 28, 2008 at 7:15 pm

    My little doggie has passed on and it makes me sad. She was my gardening dog and not my guard dog. I love your post today and it’s so nice when someone writes from the heart. Bless you little furbabies.


  7. Posted by Perennial Gardener on July 28, 2008 at 7:34 pm

    I’m happy to share my pets with you Linda. Thank you.

    I agree Chris, the rewards outweigh the challenges in my book. I have had much better luck with my rescue dogs then the purebreds we had in the past.

    So you understand where I’m coming from then Tina. I’m glad you like their names. Misty was already named when we got her. My oldest named the cat because he kept “mooching” food from us. lol And my youngest named Spaz because of her spastic energy. πŸ™‚

    That’s how I feel about my pets too Naturegirl. They give us such joy and they are only here on earth for such a fraction of time. I grew up having pets.

    Thank you Nancy for your kind remarks. I bet your Mom loved the “nest” the cat made under her lillies. lol Their just looking for a cool place to sleep. πŸ˜‰

    I’m so sorry Anna. We lost our little Pepper last fall. That was the first pet my boys had to say goodbye to. That’s why we got Spaz, she brings new energy back to our household again. Thank you for your blessings.


  8. Posted by Cindy on July 28, 2008 at 10:13 pm

    We do not have any cats or dogs (thanks to my allergies) but we do have 2 bunnies and they LOVE all the goodies I give them from the garden.

    I have been wondering all summer if a cat or dog would keep away what ever has been raiding my garden!


  9. Posted by Perennial Gardener on July 28, 2008 at 10:43 pm

    I couldn’t imagine being allergic to dogs and cats, but at least you are able to have bunnies. I bet they do love all your garden goodies. I saw they liked the Comfrey leaves too.


  10. Posted by Susie on July 29, 2008 at 12:18 am

    Thanks for the pictures of your pets. I would love to have a kitty or two but my husband is very allergic to them. So thanks for letting me enjoy yours.


  11. Posted by Balisha on July 29, 2008 at 1:00 am

    Hi PG,
    Love the pictures of your pets.I didn’t know that you had so many “helpers” in your garden.


  12. Posted by Cinj on July 29, 2008 at 1:22 am

    We had a rescue dog “Buddy” once. For almost a day. He wouldn’t leave Reggie alone taking several huge chunks of fur off of her. I felt so sad having to bring him back, but I couldn’t let him hurt her either.

    Pets are great, aren’t they? I worry about letting my cats outside. I don’t want them to chase the birds and bunnies away (the deer I could do without though!). Cheesehead also thinks it would be cruel since they are declawed.


  13. Posted by Dave on July 29, 2008 at 2:07 am

    Pets can sure add a lot of fun to your lives. Holes in the garden can be filled in but often our pets fill in other holes we didn’t know were there!


  14. Posted by Mr. McGregor's Daughter on July 29, 2008 at 2:50 am

    I miss my dogs, & not just because the squirrels have gotten ridiculously bold in their absence. My Borzoi was so photogenic, she set off the garden perfectly & my little mutt was always chewing sticks & bringing them to me to throw for her. I had to accomodate the Borzoi's running by moving a shrub that kept getting broken, but that was a small price to pay for having the dogs around to encourage me sit in the garden & pet them or play with them.


  15. Posted by Perennial Gardener on July 29, 2008 at 3:10 am

    I’m happy to share my pets with you Susie even it’s just via the blogging world. πŸ™‚ You are very welcome, I’m glad you enjoyed it.

    Hi Balisha! Thank you. Yes I have many garden helpers, lol. They give me so much joy and love.

    That’s a shame Cinj. Spaz and our cat aren’t fond of each other, we just keep them separated. The cat likes to either go out front and lay in my flower bed or he naps in my bed. We let him out during the day weather permitting, or he has a fit.

    I agree completely Dave. I couldn’t imagine my life without my pets. They give me joy.

    That’s how I feed MMD. I’ve moved things that were next to a tree so they didn’t get squashed, but for the most part the damage has been minor. Our dogs and cat are members of the family. We will miss them dearly when they are gone. I’m sorry for your loss, I know how that feels. They make us be more active.


  16. Posted by Aunt Debbi/kurts mom on July 29, 2008 at 5:27 am

    Our critters are so much a part of the house and garden. We do have to keep Abby out because she is just too distructive, but she looks through the fence and whines. The cats have free run and the bunnies help with compost. We are just one big critter filled family around here. That video on the other post was priceless.


  17. Posted by Perennial Gardener on July 29, 2008 at 2:15 pm

    That’s exactly how I feel about my pets too Deb. I’m glad you enjoyed the video of Spaz. She is a trip!


  18. Posted by Barbee' on July 29, 2008 at 9:13 pm

    Deer like to sleep in the daylilies, too.


  19. Posted by Perennial Gardener on July 30, 2008 at 1:26 am

    I didn’t know that Barbee. I knew they would eat them. πŸ™‚


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