Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Beaches are not just for people....Dogs love 'em too....

One of the great things about the Outer Banks is the wide open beaches which can provide wonderful running space for Our Family pups and for some the water adds another fascinating element to it all.

Some love the water , the crash of the waves, the feeling of the cool water on their sometimes very warm fuzzy bodies...and then just like kids the sheer exhilarating moments of running in and out of the waves, kicking up sand...trying to save their ball or frisbee from escaping out to see...and finally...the laughter they see on their humans faces watching them have a rollicking good time...

There are some dogs who just don't like the water for whatever reasons , and their humans need to understand that ...eventually with time they may love it but at first it is new and foreign to them...so be kind and don't push it.

Safety rules for dogs at the Beach ...always keep them on a leash long or short...this prevents them from making other people uncomfortable as well as keeps them in hand.  I saw one case a few years ago where a chocolate lab kept swimming out as far as he could...and his owner would swim out and retrieve him. Finally the dog swam out so far the owner couldn't reach him and the dog became tired...the frustrated Lifeguard who had been watching all of this and pointed out to the people about the leash laws , had to swim out and rescue the dog from drowning.   Simple common sense....

Always have a bottle of fresh water with you  , do not let your dog drink the salt water it will make him sick.  and always clean up after your dogs.

I found this great piece by Cesar Milan so have included it here...click the link for other important info, while a bit long very important.

http://www.cesarsway.com/pet-travel/cesars-beach-tips

  • Know the local laws. Some beaches do not accept dogs. Others require that they be on a leash at all times. Find out before you head out.
  • Prepare. You may not be aware that, like humans, dogs need protection from the sun. Talk to your veterinarian about protective goggles and canine sunblock.
  • Be confident in your pack leadership. For a dog to get the full benefit of a beach visit, off-leash (where permitted) is ideal. But remember, the beach is full of interesting scents of the sea life there. This can send your dog into a very primal state. If you don't have your leadership skills down pat, you could lose your dog.
  • Protect your dog from fleas. This is not an issue most people associate with the beach, but sand fleas are prevalent in some areas. Be aware that a wet flea collar is ineffective and can also irritate your dog's skin. Consult your veterinarian to find the best solution.
  • Let your dog dig! This is the perfect spot to let your dog try to make that tunnel to China he's been dreaming of.
  • Check conditions. Sea lice, jellyfish, undercurrents, and rip tides all pose just as much of a threat to dogs as they do to humans. Before you let your dog roam, verify with a lifeguard that the environment is safe.
  • Be aware of your dog's physical and emotional state. A trip to the beach isn't the time to punch out. Your dog may be having so much fun that he looses track of how tired, hot, or thirsty he is. It is up to you to watch for signs of dehydration or over-exhaustion. Sand and heat can make a normal exercise routine more strenuous. Trust your instincts. If something doesn't feel right, call your dog back to rest in a shady spot.
  • Be respectful of other visitors. Whether canine or human, other visitors to the beach may not appreciate your dog's company. Make sure to keep your dog in check.
  • Be vigilant. Remember that many items washed ashore, like fishing lines, litter, plant-life, and dead fish, may not be safe for your dog. When he goes exploring, keep a close eye on the objects he finds.
  • Pick up after your dog! Help keep the water clean and the beach pleasant for other visitors.
  • Give your dog a bath. If possible, give him a good rinse with fresh water before leaving the beach. When you get home, make sure to wash your dog immediately! Chemicals from sea water can be harmful to your dog's coat and health.
So have fun , take your dog or dogs to an area that is not full of people , be prepared to have a good time and be respectful of your dogs needs and the others around.
Coral Rain says " Beach I know you said Beach . we're going to the Beach ? right Mom?  Oh I love you so much Mom"


"Did somebody say Beach?"    JW

Walking to the beach can't get there fast enough...


















This is all mine....mine I tell you ....











Some "Golden" Pups enjoying the ocean yesterday





















"But I don't want to go home' yet "      JW



Bertha at the Beach ,Playing at sunset no better way to end a day.   Photo by Sandi Randi her Mom

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Boy Scouts of Roanoke Island visit Alligator River WIldlife Refuge

March 8, 2014 a group of local Boy Scouts studying wild vegetation rode the tram ride at the Wildlife refuge...the weather sort of cooperated.  Well at least the Sun (we think that was what it was ) came out.  I knew some  of the boys and they are riders on my school bus route so it was fun seeing them enjoy life outside of school or a 45 foot big yellow bus.

I have driven the tram for over a year and I have to say it was the most wonderful experience to take people around that amazing refuge...and see the bears, the birds, turtles and more.  Well most trips we were lucky enough to see such things, this trip not so much , saw a heron hunting in a field...and the scouts did get to see a red wolf track at one of the stops. 

Mr. Bob told them about the different plants, showing them examples and how to tell what from what. 

Ms. Cindy  shared the animal pelts that are part of the tram tour so that people can experience them up close and personal, they are pelts that the animals died naturally and have been processed to use educationally.   

It is a great tour and on good days you can see any number of bears, spring is here and Mama and her new babies should be showing up on the sunny fields foraging for a tasty treat. 

You can visit any time and drive the same route unattended...I recommend cameras, and patience to truly enjoy it . The tram drives at about 7 to 10 miles and hour and so we do not for the most part scare them off.  Drive slow ,,,look past the trees sometimes you will spot a owl or a hawk...or maybe a group of baby raccoons. 

But take nothing but memories and pictures and help the refuge stay clean.







































P.S. this is my final post for this blog and for the Alligator River Wildlife Refuge.  I will be posting all of the trip posts into a separate blog so look for it soon