The field at Turtle Hill is beautiful. Late season flowers cater to the late season pollinators. Bees of all sorts, and many other flying things, go from bloom to bloom. Plants wave in the wind. Insects add to all of the motion and commotion. It’s a peaceful scene, and yet […]

A Minute in Maine – Autumn Pollinators

Last week I took Tonka to Tufts (Cummings Veterinary Medical Center Hospital for Large Animals) to get a clear diagnosis about what was causing his front left intermittent lameness. This is the fourth time that Dr. Bubeck has seen Tonka. In previous visits, Dr. Bubeck has diagnosed neck arthritis, bursitis in […]

Lameness Diagnosis and Plan

Tonka and Dr. Monika Calitri discuss his ultrasound results. For the last four years, Tonka has been consistently inconsistently lame in his left fore. Most of the time there’s nothing amiss, some of the time there’s a slight unevenness to his stride, occasionally he’s head-bobbing lame. It’s hard to diagnose […]

The Next Step

For the last four years, Tonka has been intermittently off on the left front. Trotted out on a hard surface and turned sharply to the left, he shows a head bob – a sign that there’s something going on that is ouchy. Most of the time though, that’s it. On […]

Lame in the Front Left

Lately, I’ve been thinking about dogs and dog training. I love my ancient little Scooter, but I miss interacting with an active dog. About 2 months ago I saw a piece in the local paper about how Guiding Eyes for the Blind (GEB) was looking for volunteer puppy raisers here […]

Dog Training!

My ancient little dog, Scooter, likes his routine. Wake up at 7:15. Go out to his potty area to pee, come in, eat a little, go back out to poop, come in. Nap. Have a meal later in the afternoon. If the weather is nice, sunbathe on his ramp for […]

Porcupines Disrupt Scooter’s Routine

Yesterday Tonka and I trailered to meet our friends Maggie and Michele at Pipestave, a gorgeous chunk of conservation land that has horse trails and cross-country jumps. We haven’t seen each other for more than two years. The horses were pleased to reconnect. Note that neither horse needed to stop […]

Tonka Jumps Cross-Country

Here in southern Maine, we have both invasive and native species of thistles. Pollinators love all of them, but not farmers. They render pastures and hay fields useless. Goats are one of the few animals to eat thistles, and even for them it’s a plant of last resort.   Thank […]


Here at Turtle Hill, this year’s resident porcupine is a female that I call Hattie. She has a distinctive band of white across her head. Looks like a hat. You can see her full markings in this photo of her climbing Oak Tree # 1 – a favored place to […]

Name the Porcupette