Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Running over snakes

A few days ago I was on my motorbike going to a distant pasture and I ran over this fellow. I saw him too late and all I could do was avoid putting on the brakes. I stopped and went back. He seemed unhurt, and very angry at me. I was glad I hadn't hurt or killed him as he is a bull snake and an excellent mouser. Some folks value them because they believe they kill poisonous snakes. We have no rattlers here so that's not really a reason for me to protect them.

I called Jack over to see the snake and was very pleased to see that he didn't want any part of it, staying very close to me in the proper heel position and just looking on with mild interest and, I imagined, some distaste. I can smell a large snake myself so I can imagine what it must be like for dogs. Some dogs have to be conditioned to avoid snakes, but Jack has been blessed with some aversion towards them since puppyhood— something I have been happy to encourage.

And darned if the very next day I didn't run over another one on the road, also on the moto-pony. Again he was uninjured and again he was very disappointed in my treatment of him. In both cases the heavy lugs on the tires and the soft ground kept them from being injured. Of which I am glad.

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