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My Hounds–My Heroes

May 30, 2009
Photo of Big and Little as pups. I don't have a photo of them grown. The one on the right looks a lot like them except my pups were more golden colored.

Photo of Big and Little as pups. I don't have a photo of them grown. The one on the right looks a lot like them except my pups were more golden colored.

Rick, true to his word, came home from work the next day with not one but two Plott hound pups. They were only 8 weeks old so I had a lot of puppy training ahead of me.

Plott Hounds are loyal and intelligent, quick to learn and quick to love.
They are very determined, courageous and proud. Their mode of hunting is to play “chicken” whether it be with a 500-pound bear or a 6 foot Black snake.

Well, right now, this didn’t seem possible with these 2. They were tiny little pups–one short-haired and on the skinny side and one big and fluffy. It was hard to believe they were brothers of the same breed. As time went by, Rick kept calling them Big ‘Un and Little ‘Un, and those names stuck. We never did give them real names. I shortened it to ‘Big’ and ‘Little’ most of the time.

Dang was not happy with these new additions to the family. He wouldn’t go in the house when they were in there and when they were all outside, he would go off, nearby, to the woods and lay out there. He wouldn’t even let them touch him. He wasn’t mean to them. He just gave warning growls and they slinked away like they’d been chewed out.

I couldn’t keep up with all 3 dogs. Trying to keep them close to home was exhausting. We went to the Farm store and bought wire fencing, posts, and 2×4’s for the bottom of the fence so they couldn’t dig out underneath. Rick spent the weekend getting it put up. He made it quite a large area, encasing all of one side of the house where the doghouse plus half of the front with the gate opening right off the front porch. This made it easier for me to let them in and out without having to go out into ‘snake territory’.
Eventually, since all 3 of them were penned together, Dang befriended them and they all became great pals.

Over time and with intense training, these dogs became my sidekicks in my everyday life and my solace, my comfort during the bad times with Rick. They became great guard dogs and I trusted them completely to keep me safe.

In the wintertime, it was easy for me to hear the sounds on the roads above the property and throughout the woods. No leaves on the trees to absorb the sounds and the wildlife was quieter during the cold months. No crickets or tree frogs chirping, no birds singing. It would be so quiet you could hear a fly land on the roof.

However, summertime brought all the wildlife noise, the leaves on the trees would absorb the sounds of the road so that I couldn’t tell when someone was coming. The dogs had great hearing and unique warning capabilities. Rather than bark when someone was coming–which would alert them to the fact that we heard them coming–the dogs would emit a low, vibrating growl. Loud enough I could hear it in the house yet low enough an intruder couldn’t hear it. As soon as someone would turn on to the top of our road–a half mile away–the dogs alerted me to the fact.

One time, the electric company man came down to read the meter. The dogs were out of the fence laying out in the yard and let me know someone was coming. I was nervous until I saw who it was. But, as far as the dogs were concerned, he didn’t belong here. They circled the truck, growling, and wouldn’t let him out. Finally, he drove slowly up to the meter to read it from there. He started to roll down his window to see the meter better but the dogs growled even deeper–more threatening. He rolled up the window and motioned for me. I had been watching from the porch in amazement at these wondrous guard dogs. I walked up to the truck and all 3 dogs lined up between me and the truck still growling. I yelled to him what the numbers were on the meter, then he slowly backed out. When he was away from the dogs, he gunned that truck and got the heck outta there! Hahaha! I loved it!

They knew the sound of Rick’s truck so rather than growling, they would all wait at the fence line with their tails wagging and yipping quietly in anticipation–Daddy’s home!  Later, we had to let them know who were friends and family whenever anyone came to visit so they wouldn’t scare the crap out of them.

By the time they were a year old, they became great snake killers. Dang even joined in with them. I guess he wanted to be one of the ‘Big Guys’. If they encountered a snake, they would circle and growl, never letting up. Sometimes, this would go on for up to 30 minutes. Then when they had the snake entranced, 2 of them would keep up the circling while the 3rd one would come up from behind and sink his teeth into the back of the snake’s  upper back. Voila! Dead snake!

God, I loved these guys!!!


11 Comments leave one →
  1. May 30, 2009 3:44 pm

    What beautiful, intelligent dogs!
    I’m so glad you had them – I’m sighing with relief!!
    As always…looking forward to the next installment!

  2. May 30, 2009 3:54 pm

    Thank you Jonie. I miss those dogs but writing this brought back good memories.

  3. June 1, 2009 11:52 am

    What beautiful dogs, I’m sure Big and Little were great protectors, but I bet Dang was the one in charge.

  4. June 1, 2009 2:26 pm

    Hi Nancy! Actually once the dogs became adults, Dang acted more of a little brother. He usually took their lead in whatever was going on–even if it was wrong! 🙂

  5. Groundy permalink
    June 1, 2009 2:50 pm

    Odd how the abuser finds something to give comfort. Something they lack in humanity.

    I am glad your doggies found that love with you too!

  6. Louna Cee permalink
    June 5, 2009 9:47 am

    I can understand your joy over having these great dogs.

    I recently acquired a puppy for the kids (to distract them of the insanity), and it is a great addition to the family and EVERYONE adores him, now. I can agree w/ Groundy… I was amazed how ‘HE’ could suddenly feel compassionate for our dog…

    I have to admit that they are fun to watch and great for depression! =D


  7. June 5, 2009 1:29 pm

    Yes, Louna, they were my Godsend at that time!

  8. June 11, 2009 1:38 pm

    They are so precious. :=)

    It really makes me miss my dogs (3) but one in particular. (had to leave them when I left)

    I don’t think I can *ever* replace him. I won’t even try.

    This is a happy/sad post. Dang you for making me tear up . ;p

  9. June 11, 2009 2:06 pm

    ATL, I’m sorry I made you cry. Yes, I miss all of my critters and I can’t replace any of them either.

  10. Cathy permalink
    June 16, 2009 4:43 pm

    I just amazes me how much a dog can bring into your life . I could never imagine what life would be with out a dog . I love my 3 with all my heart.

  11. June 16, 2009 5:54 pm

    Hi Cathy and welcome to my blog! Yes, our pets are usually our only true source of unconditional love and devotion! 🙂

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