No really, this is interesting:
So Momma the dog seems to have a boyfriend. He’s been following her around patiently and very intently, waiting for her to put her guard down. When she does, he immediatly tries to mount her and gets a very upset Mama barking and snapping at his face. She sits with her butt to the wall now.
Her suitor does look a lot like the puppies and they don’t seem to mind him around, so maybe he is Papa. I was pretty surprised he’d be here for another round so soon with the puppies only recently off the teat, until I read that dogs can have two litters a year (of up to 10 puppies!).
So now I’m thinking, no wonder dog overpopulation is a problem here. Apparently people here deal with the problem by occasionally poisoning the strays. Back in the day they used to shoot them, but upset tourists started to complain, so now they stab them with a poisoned dart on a bamboo pole, or (worse) leave out poisoned food. Either way it is a painful and slow death. :(
There is an animal clinic on the island that brings in a vet once a month to spay dogs. It doesn’t seem like our place to take Momma in when we’ve only known her a few months and she still spends a lot of time at the neighbor’s across the street. But if we get a chance to talk to them about it we will.
Also, Momma has (at least) four puppies, not just three as we’d believed. The one we call Timmy that was alternately super shy or super licky is in fact two dogs. We’ve dubbed the super licky one, a girl doggy it turns out, Ivy. Ivy enjoys nothing more than to jump on my back when I’m sitting and chew my hair.
The lot of them seem to be pretty comfortable with us now. We kick them out at night but Momma and Brave sleep on the deck outside. The others spend most of their time across the street but come around (excepting Timmy) every day to cause puppy havoc. I don’t know if they are teething or what but they chew every damn thing they can get in their mouths, including (and particularly) fingers, skirts, our doormat and their siblings ears. We bought them some rawhide sticks which they go to great lengths to steal and guard from eachother.
The puppies have been locked outside today due to horrendous newyears-related hangovers and low tolerance for fast-moving objects. I’ve spent the whole day reading blogs and writing journal entries in the comfort of cranked air conditioning. Not that it’s hot out today, but it just feels nice, like a special treat.