My life has a superb cast but I can't figure out the plot.
~ Ashleigh Brilliant

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Baby Mocha plus Larry, Moe & Curly

As I mentioned in my previous post, Mocha turned 22 on Easter Sunday. Here's what he looked like 22 years ago, when he was just a little man with a fuzzy little monkey face. :-) 

Baby Mocha and his proud mom, Sasha
April 4, 1988, Abilene, TX

Sasha was a beautiful four-year old mare who,
unbeknownst to anyone (except Sasha, that is),
was pregnant when I got her. So I got a twofer! :-)

Mocha's cute little baby butt
He's always loved to flip his feed pan upside down.
To him, everything's a toy and everyone's a playmate!

Sasha and Mocha enjoy an afternoon lope together.
Not bad for a brand new mom and brand new baby!

Here's one of my favorite photos of Mocha, all grown up
and playing with Willow in the wildflowers.
June 4, 2009

Click here for more photos of Mocha as a handsome adult.

He very much enjoyed his birthday treats!

And speaking of treats... we'd told the dogs the Easter Bunny would be paying them a visit, so Tess and Willow kept a watchful vigil...

We took the girls for a walk, then made them wait outside while we hid six Mr. Barky's veggie biscuits in easy-to-find (well, WE thought so) locations around the living area. Then we let them in and told them the Easter Bunny had come while we'd been on our walk ;-) and they each had two treats hidden for them. So go find them girls! Come on, my brilliant babies... find your biscuits! Whenever you're ready, kids! Okay... now would be good! Um, how 'bout now? Let's go girls, go find your treats, you can do it!

But they just bounced around BW, waiting for their handout.
Zero concept of hidden treats!
(And zero chance of careers locating buried disaster victims!)

Since one of the biscuits was hidden just to the right of the wardrobe that you can see behind the dogs in this photo, BW maneuvered the herd in that vicinity...

He pointed right to the biscuit, but they just stared at and sniffed his pointing finger. LOL Finally Josie found the treat by the wardrobe, munched it loudly and victoriously in front of everyone, and the Easter biscuit hunt was on!

Willow, a peerless chow-hound, caught on quickly. She followed her collie nose to the opposite end of the house, and without any clues or assistance managed to find the biscuit hidden at the end of the banister. Here she is enjoying her prize...

Willow caught on SO well, in fact, that she nearly found all the remaining biscuits, and would have eaten more than her fair share had we not intervened! (There's always one kid like that in the bunch, isn't there?) ;-)

Poor Tessa simply lacks the knack of finding things. We guided her to the end of the sofa, where you can see the biscuit sitting on one of the dumbbells. (That's a tempting joke setup, but I'll refrain!) ;-)

Getting warmer, Tessa, getting warmer... hotter, hotter...
HOT, Tess, you're HOT!

How could she possibly not smell it?!
I thought dogs were supposed to have a sense of smell
something like 50 billion times more powerful than ours!
Apparently Tess didn't get the memo! ;-)

She did finally find it... they all ultimately found their allotted biscuits and got another treat as a reward for such high-spirited (if somewhat spastic) efforts. I told you... it's like an Easter Egg hunt with the Three Stooges! (But without the dope-slaps and "woop-woop-woop" and "doiiiinnnng!" sound effects. Just lots of slobbery crunching sounds!)

Easter at our house...


  1. Your horse friends are beautiful; what a beautiful place for them to run and enjoy too.

    I love that you had an Easter treat hunt for the dogs...what a fun idea...and I'm sure they enjoyed it.

    Thanks for making my day with your lovely photos of animal friends.

  2. What great pictures! Mochas was adorable even as a little guy.

    I would never have thought of an Easter hunt for the cats. But I may try that next year just to see what happens. At our house all I would have to do is include nori or kelp and they would be all over it. At least, that is what I think....but who knows.

    Great pics and story, thanks for sharing!

  3. My heart just melted when I saw the picture of Mocha & Willow. Oh my goodness, how gorgeous! <3

    I love the biscuit hunt that you did with the girls. So cute! Emma & Rowan wore their bunny collars & pink harnesses. They were looking mighty girly. :)

  4. Rose - I'm glad you enjoyed the photos! We're down to just Mocha now (we had four horses at one point back in Texas), but he's got some horse buddies on the other side of his paddock fence, along with his deer, bunny and turkey friends. :-)

    The Easter treat hunt was highly entertaining. We've done it every Easter for years, and the dogs always seem to find it great fun.

    Ali - Wasn't Mocha an adorable baby? Had a LOT of personality too, very funny and mischievous. He's still very playful!

    I think your cats would enjoy an Easter treat hunt next year! We'll probably use more fragrant treats next time... some of Molly's homemade dog treats would be great, though that might ramp up the competitiveness! :-)

    Molly - Isn't that a pretty photo of Mocha and Willow? It's easy to see why it's my favorite! That was a fun day... I took a lot of photos of Mocha and the girls in the wildflowers that morning. So pretty! (We put up with all the snow - several more inches yesterday - for days and scenes like that!) :-)

    You KNOW I want to see photos of Rowan and Emma in their bunny collars and pink harnesses! Too cute! Your girls always dress so festively for special occasions. :-)

  5. Hey Tex-
    Love, love, love this story about the dog treats. Dumb and dumber....huh? I had one dog that would find a crumb ANYWHERE....and then there's my current little miss who needs tapping toes next to the item for her to find. For the love...I had to teach her the pleasures of an open dishwasher. What cha gonna do?
    Hope you are doing well.

  6. Sue! What a fun surprise to see your comment! LOL, I'll bet you can relate to the Easter-Biscuit hunt, and I can relate to your descriptions of Abby (I'm assuming she was your crumb-finder extraordinaire?) vs. Tula's treat-finding abilities. That toe-tapping technique often works for our darlings, though too often for comfort they're distracted by the tapping toes and don't notice the treat! :-)

    Oh well, they're brilliant in so many other ways! They get top marks in providing entertainment and unconditional love, so we'll happily overlook their treat-locator malfunctions. :-)

    I so owe you an email, Sue. I will write soon!
    xoxo, Tex

  7. Ha! We hid treats for Graeme the first Easter we had him, and it was the same way: we had to get him within a foot of the treat in order for him to find it. The whole event was very frantic. Happy birthday Mocha! Baby horses always look so fragile.

  8. Boy, am I glad to hear that my darlings aren't the only ones who are biscuit-hunt challenged! :-)

    I know, Mary, foals have such spindly legs, they look like they'd go down in a heap at the slightest breeze! But it's amazing how strong those skinny little baby legs can be!


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  • THE HUMANE GARDENER ~ Nancy Lawson
  • THE WORLD WITHOUT US ~ Alan Weisman

There is still strong in our society the belief
that animals and the natural world have value
only insofar as they can be converted into revenue.
That nature is a commodity.
And that the American dream is one of unlimited consumption.
There are many of us, on the other hand,
who believe that animals and the natural world
have value by virtue of being alive.
That Nature is a community to which we belong
and to which we owe our lives.
And that the deeper American dream is one of unlimited compassion.

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