Photo credit goes to xeriscapeaz.org
On Monday morning Jack woke early and had plenty of time to play with Cassie in the backyard before school. I was inside making Jack's lunch when I heard Cassie's Alert Bark, so I went outside to investigate. She was barking ferociously at the resident herd of javelina, passing through the wash behind the house, trotting on their ridiculously tiny hooves. "Jack! Come see the javelina!" I said.
He ran over and leaned against the wall by the lemon tree, where the wall runs shortest. "Here pig pig!" he called. And what the hell? The big ones started coming over, and the little ones followed. "Oh-ho!" Jack was delighted when the entire herd of seven javelina---five adults and two babies---walked over to stand just on the other side of the wall, lifting their round wet snouts and sniffing our air.
"Someone's been feeding them," I said, over Cassie's barking, and turned to go inside to get the camera; talk about a bloggable moment.
But before I took my first step Cassie hoisted herself over the wall and into the midst of the herd. They scattered. Two adults ran east through the wash, the babies ran west through the wash, two adults ran across the street, and Cassie chased one adult across our neighbor's front yard. I hollered for David, ordered Jack inside, and ran barefoot across the decomposed granite side yard to retrieve my dog. The javelina charged her and I tried to grab her, Dave yelled at me to come back, Jack was suddenly in the middle of the melee.
When Dave said to us, "Get back here. Cassie's protecting you," I saw the truth of it and retreated. Cassie came back to us and the javelina ran off. The whole incident lasted maybe two minutes total, but sure was an exciting way to start the week.