I see the tracks in the snow all the time, and the depressions where they have bedded down for the night - sometimes, you can see from the 'bed holes' in the snow that it was a female with twin calves, finding a cozy spot hidden by bushes. The dogs will dig up the moose pellets and enjoy them as snacks before I can command them to leave it.
I often see Moose on the side of the road, or standing in a field, or just ambling down the street as if it was a moose trail, when I'm driving to and fro, toward town or back to home.
But this morning I was out playing with Gryffon, and all the dogs in the neighborhood where making such a racket!!! I hate noise, that is why I moved out into a rural area, where moose walking down the road is a normal sight. It was a warm, sunny day, the temps just above freezing - very pleasant winter weather. Even though I'm on five acres and we are at the back of the property bordering undeveloped wooded lands, the racket from the area dogs is deafening. I'm thinking how much I prefer the really cold and crisp -20 weather, as this nice warm weather is bringing out people walking down the road, or riding their horses, whipping all the local dog population into a frenzy of barking. At least, it is normally quieter when really cold, nobody ventures out.
Then through the bush I see movement, and a full grown bull moose materializes itself - Gryff sees it the same time I do, and he barks a "You tresspasser! , get out of here" bark and runs towards the moose. The moose turns on his haunches and takes off, while I try to remain calm and recall Gryff - he didn't really seem set on chasing the moose, and seems satisfied that he is gone, and I have his ball on a string so he comes back and gets rewarded for responding with a bit of tug and a lot of praise.
How interesting for me - I've seen Gryffon sniff out and chase rabbits, grouse, squirrels - it is a game for him, and chases them a short distance, but doesn't pursue. But I've never seen him bark and go AT something with so much presence and confidence. He is normally a very quiet dog, more of a wait and see reaction when presented with something new. I loved to see how 'in control' he appeared in this instance. This wasn't about chasing prey, this was very different.
So the moose runs off in the direction it came from, and I give it a few minutes to put some distance on between us. Then I walk out of the wooded area into my field with Gryff, and up the middle of the field comes trotting this moose! Looks like he ran back out towards the road, got the dogs all hepped up in another barking frenzy, so decided that the empty field with the tree cover in the back was the best place for a moose to retreat back to.
Dang! Nice rack though, I notice. He sees us and stops. This time, I saw the moose before Gryff did, so I call him to me and platz him. Now what to do?? He is between us and the way back to the house? I'm wishing I had my camera, but of course I do not - I mean, I just stepped out to play ball with my dog!
Well, I let the moose know this is MY territory and call out loud "HEY! THERE'S A MOOSE
IN THE MIDDLE OF MY
Mr. Moose probably felt ackward for invading private property, he turned off to the left and trotted of at a 90 degree angle back into the woods, going away from us.
Hmmmphhh! Thanks for letting us pass.