On the phone last night, I tried to convey to my mom the horror that was Farmer H insinuating that my sweet, sweet Juno had attempted to eat the groceries that I put in their Devil's Playground bags on the side porch while I fetched more from T-Hoe. "Get away from there, Juno!" he had bellowed while I was out of sight. Trying to frame her, I'm sure. To drive a wedge between us.
"Juno has never bothered those bags. The Pony and I put them there all the time. She only tries to get closer to me when I deliver another batch. She must have stepped on one and crinkled it."
The Pony was on the couch listening. "She gets in the bags all the time! You've seen her!"
"No I haven't. She never gets in the bags."
"She sticks her nose in them."
"No she doesn't. You're making that up."
"And she chases the chickens, too!"
"That's a lie! Oh...she chases them off the porch. That must be what you mean. She doesn't want them in her food dish."
"She chases them though the yard, and she pulls out their tail feathers!"
"Bite your tongue! I've seen her run at them. When I throw out bread. But she does NOT pull out their tail feathers."
"Yes she does."
That is so hurtful. The Pony must have been repeating what his dad tells him. I'm sure. My sweet, sweet Juno is high-spirited, but she would never bite the chickens. Even if her favorite toy IS a plastic brown chicken with one yellow foot chewed off that squeaks when she chomps on it.
This morning, I told Farmer H that I saw a german shepherd run across the front yard by the road. "Of course, our dogs barked their fool heads off while sitting on the porch. But Juno took off through the trees after him. I hope he didn't eat a chicken."
"Juno chases the chickens, and pulls out their tail feathers. Yesterday she was chasing the turkey. She had him by the tail."
"I don't think so. Unless she was doing it for sport. She's a herder. She needs something to occupy her time. It's not like she kills them."
"Grizzly is the one who killed the chickens. Now that he's dead, they're fine."
"Oh, Grizzly didn't mean to kill them. He was just playing with them."
"He killed two of the first three chickens you brought home within an hour of you letting them out of the cage!"
"He was playing."
"We came home that time and caught him with Survivor in his jaws! That's how he got his name...Survivor."
"Yeah, but he let us pry Survivor out of his mouth."
"We thought he was dead."
"Then he jumped up and took off, and Grizzly ran after him. Grizzly was playing."
I swear. Juno will never get a fair trial around here.