Polar bears are coming

Olivia Fowler

Olivia Fowler

On The Way

By Olivia Fowler

o you think the polar bears are as uncomfortable in warm weather as we are in cold? Although polar bear sightings are allegedly rare in South Carolina, or nonexistent as some claim, we are waiting to spot one in the woods.

The dogs apparently are convinced there’s something strange out there. At least that’s what they have told us three nights in a row.

If the polar bears follow the path of the Arctic blast we’ve enjoyed, they’re probably out there right now looking for seals and other things with a high fat content.

Don’t be surprised to see one going through the drive through at McDonalds, loading up on fries and shakes.

I’m not a fan of cold weather. We all expect it during the winter months but we fortunately live in an area where we complain of the cold when the temperature is in the 40s. We are not made to survive in the Arctic. Our blood is too thin.

And it isn’t only hard on humans. Animals have a hard time coping also.

Fowler has done everything possible to keep our animals warm and watered. There are heat lamps in the dog houses. Sebastian and Red Dog share an insulated house on the front porch. Inside the house are retired saddle blankets which they burrow under. There is also a heavy plastic flap over the doorway to keep out drafts.

Dabby and Kewpie share an insulated house in the backyard. In addition to the heat lamp, which is on 24/7 for the duration, their house is full of cedar shavings. They also have a thick door flap protecting them from drafts.

They come out of their house at intervals to bark at the polar bears. Sebastian does not. He barks from inside his house while lying under his horse blanket; Just enough to let us know he is on duty but is not going to kill himself.

We keep water for the dogs and cats on the front porch, in the backyard and at the tomato shed.

Those water bowls have to be refilled often. Fresh water is poured into the bowls after the solid cakes of ice are removed.

One of the best things Fowler has at the stable is a piece of equipment that keeps the water in the horse trough from freezing.

It plugs into an electrical outlet and has a metal rod that is placed into the water, keeping the temperature above freezing.

In the past, Fowler has had to use a hatchet to break up the ice so the horses could drink.

The horse trough is actually a retired bath tub set on blocks. It has served for many years in its repurposed capacity. The horses are not the only creatures to drink from this when everything is frozen solid. The dogs, cats and birds also take advantage of one of the few unfrozen bodies of water in the area.

Tractors don’t like to crank in this weather either. So it just takes a lot longer to move hay bales.

On the bright side, we haven’t lost electricity or hot water. We have heat and enough to eat. And maybe this weather will wipe out fire ants. It could happen.

We are looking forward to spring. We can hold on until then. And no matter how hot it gets this summer, I promise not to complain.