Tuesday Garden Party 04.01.14 {It Wasn’t A Mouse…}

Welcome to the first Tuesday Garden Party for April! And it’s starting off with a bang at our house since we woke up to this a few days ago:

Dog Destruction - An Oregon Cottage

Some of you may remember something that looked very similar to this from last year – only slightly less destructive, as you’ll see in a moment. Yes, our dog Samson again went crazy in the mudroom/laundry where he sleeps at night. We couldn’t figure out what it was last year, but after happening twice in a row (agh!!) we concluded it was a mouse he was after.

Oh, and after posting this on Instagram and getting a comment about the dog, I should point out that this dog is the sweetest, gentlest dog there ever was – and I’m not just saying that. The only time he was destructive was in the first year we had him and he chewed everything he could find – but that’s not unusual in young dogs. He’s 8 now and doesn’t chew at all.

More Dog Destruction - An Oregon Cottage

And while I was relieved to see that the tomatoes managed to stay upright {though two were only left with stems} I was not so happy about what we found in the little clothes-drying closet next to the washer and dryer. That’s it on the left above {please ignore the dust, it was behind a dryer vent!} – you can see where the dryer vent came through the opening…and the blood left on the walls from Samson completely tearing up the dryer vent and metal wall attachment-thingy. Can you believe it? {He’s fine, amazingly – we never could find and injury in his mouth, we’re thinking it was a gum bleed that stopped pretty quickly.}

Since this is a whole new thing – attacking the vent – we can only conclude that it’s not a mouse. Especially because Samson’s done nothing even remotely like this since the last time a year ago…when there were seedlings. My new theory is that it has something to do with the shop light coming on – it’s on a timer for 6:00 am – and that there’s a high pitched sound that the fluorescent light emits that drives him crazy. We see a little of this whenever our smoke detectors start beeping, and it’s all I can think of, especially since the overturned seedlings were not wilted at all by the time we found this at 7:00am.

So – no chances anymore, his new sleeping arrangement is in the hallway until the seedlings are safe in the garden. And yes, I will have another year where I don’t know the exact varieties…sigh. But I was able to salvage most of the overturned seedlings – after 1-1/2 hours of clean up and repotting.

How about you share something a little more, um, upbeat? Maybe some beautiful flowers or, hey – even intact seedlings? You can probably guess I could use it!


  1. Sakura says

    Wow, that’s crazy! I’m glad your dog is ok. Maybe he just couldn’t stand the thought of sleeping one more night with those veggie starts in the same room! Dogs are the best!

  2. says

    I’m so glad your dog is ok. I hope your seedling make it too. We just got ours planted last week and they are still trying to sprout on top of the refrigerator.

    • says

      Well, I’m trying no to be grumpy about the 2 I did lose, since one is a hard to find “honey bunch grape” tomato that I grew a few years ago and loved. Of course it couldn’t have been one of the early girls that are a dime a dozen at the nurseries, ha! :)

  3. says

    Holy wow! All that because of a light kicking on!? It does look like he was after something. What a mess. Glad to hear the blood was superficial. I’d have been fuming while cleaning it all up!

  4. Mary Jamieson says

    Have you thought that it might be a smell in the soil? A few years ago, I had a similar experience. I had used some fish fertilizer in the soil in some colorspots. Our dog destroyed each pot that had the fish fertilizer in it. Do you use any organics, manure, etc in your soil?

    • says

      I hadn’t added any fertilizer yet, Mary, and there is none in the potting soil I used, so probably not that, though it’s a good suggestion. :)

  5. says

    oh, gosh, I’m so sorry! It’s crazy that he just started doing that.
    I actually thought about you a couple of weeks ago. We had a huge wind storm and it knocked all my squash, melon, winter squash and ornamental squash seedlings to the ground. We lost most of them but the ones that are left will just be a surprise, right?

  6. Petmom says

    Dogs are pack animals and genetically programmed to need contact. Perhaps he would do better sleeping closer to his pack. (The family)

    • says

      That is true, but all dogs are different and ours actually chooses to be by himself a lot of the time. He’s always liked small places that he can curl up in – maybe it’s the den mentality, too?

  7. Leslie says

    Whoa, that must have been awful to walk in and start piecing together what had happened. I’m sorry about your plants, though I’m very glad that Samson’s okay. I love my gardening, but I love my critters more. 😉

    I’ve never heard of a clothes-drying closet before, but I’d like to see pictures if you ever have time for that.

    Sending good wishes for your plants.

  8. Michele Laughlin says

    Sorry for your trouble Jamie! My Yorkie liked to sit in our plumeria plant when we left the house…we lost all the leaves and we couldn’t figure out why she jumped in the potted plant only when we were gone. Then, we realized that it was the highest point she could reach to see the garage door entrance to the house! The plumeria is safely perched on top of our spice pantry in the sun and the Yorkie has to sit on the back of the couch to see us as soon as we walk in the door! DOGS!!! Can’t live without them, but sometimes you wish you could!

  9. says

    Well at least you have hopefully figured that out! I would be beside myself if anything happened to my seedlings. It is disheartening to have to start over. Good luck!


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