Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Raw Dog goes Hollywood! (sort of)

Well, here I am in Los Angeles, with weather as gray, cloudy, and drizzly as I left it back home--I couldn't have asked for more ;0).

We're off today for dim sum, then to see the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles, the LA County Art Museum, and possibly the La Brea Tar Pits if time and weather allow.

Tomorrow it's a tour of chi-chi Beverley Hills and West Hollywood pet boutiques for ideas and networking. Am hoping to find some kind of crazy ethnic food for lunch and dinner--ideally something to delight the senses and make my innocent Western intestines anxious!

Left Arion with my falconry sponsor after an incredible series of 60-70 foot flights in the G-street park where a little cluster of gaping teenagers gave us an audience. He's spending the next week in Callan's weathering yard with the shrieking Zia and lovely Gyr, Magic.

More updates to come!

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

World, meet Arion.

From the Illiad: "The great Arion, the swift horse of Adrastus [king of Argos], whose birth is from the immortals"; sired by Poseidon and foaled of Gaia, the Earth herself.

Day 3 finds us jumping quite comfortably ten feet for bits of cottontail. He's a bit edgier today as the shock wears off and he's assessing his new situation. He had a huge feed yesterday, which he worked for, every bite. Today he's at 27 oz. even, having gained .6 with yesterday's full crop. He takes less today, he worked in the morning for about two ounces, and this afternoon for about another half-ounce, jumping twelve feet to the end of a short creance, three times. At that point, he was comfortably fed and paying more attention to the environment than the glove, so back to the mews we went.

On the Raw Dog front, life is good if a bit nutty. I had some issues getting a good-quality side of black latigo, so my deepest apologies to those folks still waiting for six-foot black leads. I am extremely choosy about my materials and I will not spend my money or yours on poor quality leather. I ended up sending back two subsequent shipments because they were extremely dry, had a weird, slick finish, and were far too light. My hide supplier takes good care of me, though, and ended up shipping in a side from a different tannery entirely. Anyway, the black latigo siege has ended and I picked up the new hide late today. Leads are cut and prepped and will be stitched and finished tomorrow. Thanks worlds for your patience.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007


Just a quick update--the last two days have been something of a blur.

Sunday evening I became the owner of a 30.2 oz tiercel red-tailed hawk. Spotted just before dark in an area we'd trapped over probably a dozen times, he sat calmly on the trap and allowed himself to be picked up with little fuss.

We spent a few hours the first night getting to know each other. He is remarkably calm, and has only bated (jumping from the fist and flapping around) once in two days.

He ate readily the next day, now down to 28 oz. Took three bites from forceps then did a face-plant in a quarter quail. Success!

This morning we worked on jumping to the glove for bites of food, which came with no problem.
He was down another two ounces to 26.4 this morning, even with the meal last night, so he worked for three ounces of food this AM and he's still looking around eagerly for more. Part of this morning's meal was a quail wing for "tiring"--not much actual food, but satisfying because it takes some work to pick apart. Left calm on perch at 6:30.

He still hasn't told me his name. I keep running through every source I can imagine, and haven't come across it yet. Will keep you posted!

Friday, December 7, 2007

Holy Buckets!

So I just, now, for the first time, have gotten a second to stop and breathe.
It's been a nutty couple of weeks. The Holiday Market is keeping me mighty busy, as are orders through the site--between the both of them I'm running myself a bit ragged. Call it ragged in a tremendously joyous way; if I'm a little sleep deprived because I'm doing good business, well... who can complain about that?

In the last two weeks we've shipped orders to four different countries and eight states, met Portuguese Water Dogs, Havanese, and a Pharaoh hound owner, though unfortunately not the pooch himself--I've still never seen one in person. It's been quite a run so far, and not halfway over, yet.

On the falconry front, things have pretty much come to a stand-still. The weather's now so bad that even in the spare moments I have to go out trapping, there aren't any birds out hunting. I've more or less spent every spare hour I can scrape together roaming the area and there just isn't anything to be had. After the holidays I'll have more time to take myself to the other side of the state or up to Washington. My trapping permit is good through February, so time's not out yet!