In a Sow’s Ear 7-5-10
Oh, give me a home where the deer and the antelope play. Especially antelope.
Bailout the Cowdog learned about mama antelope the hard way. When you see a doe antelope off by herself in May or early June, you can pretty much assume she’s not being stand-offish. Without benefit of HMO, insurance or P.E.T.A. she’s probably about to birth a fawn, maybe twins. Mama antelope will leave her newborn offspring lying low in the grass among the sagebrush. Baby stays put, blending in with earth while mama strolls about eating lunch.
Unless you stumble across a fawn, you’ll never see it till it’s older and can keep up with its speedy parent. Even Bailout the Cowdog can’t catch a running antelope, though she tries. (She’s a doggie optimist).
So, while galloping along after me on the 4-wheeler, Bailout spooked a pair of fawns out of the brush and the chase was on. Two babies scuttled away, terrified of this furry monster snapping at their heels. And then the scene changed.
Mama antelope (I’m sure her name was Beatrice) came boiling over the brow of a low rise. Beatrice took after Bailout.
“Huh?” said Bailout. “Hey, Ms. Antelope, you’re supposed to run away. I’m supposed to chase you.”
Now, an antelope isn’t a very fearsome looking creature unless you’re being chased by one. But this was one mad mama. Her tiny hooves tore up the turf. Bailout was looking at her hole card when over the rise appeared another mama antelope (I’m sure her name was Beulah). Beatrice and Beulah bore down faster than two proverbial speeding bullets. Their dainty antelope hooves scarcely touched the ground as they closed in.
If ever you’ve wondered what “turned tail” looks like, you would understand had you watched Bailout the Cowdog make a roaring Wiley E. Coyote about-face. She turned into a hairy rocket close to lift-off.
Beatrice and Beulah drew almost near enough that the next couple of steps would have put them antler-to-canine rear end. Bailout’s yipping reached a crescendo an opera diva would be proud of. She reached the house, zoomed around the corner into the carport and literally dove into her doghouse which has a curtain over the door.
Beatrice and Beulah halted a few yards away from the carport, but for several eons they remained – eyeballing the area like a pair of SWAT team snipers. You could almost hear them daring Bailout to emerge.
Beatrice and Beulah retreated only when I drove up on the 4-wheeler. As they did so, they each looked back once – kind of like a pair of movie stars glancing over a shoulder. I didn’t know antelope faces could register disdain. I think I saw one of them raise an eyebrow.
Quite a long time later, Bailout the Cowdog crept forth. I wondered if I would have to take her to a doggie therapist to rebuild her self-esteem, but a couple of days later, she happily took up chasing antelope again … the ones way, way over there, say half a section or so.