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January 31, 2012

History of Frankie Caves

History of Frankie shelters, i.e. Frankie Caves.
Baby Frankie's first "cave" was a cave.   

Frankie outgrew his second cave. 

Frankie's first Rubbermaid cave.  Frankie used it for five years
until he could no longer turn around inside.   
Frankie gets to come indoors during inclement weather.  Boxes were useful.
Box is too small but Frankie could care less.

Frankie Rubbermaid cave #2 is very elaborate. It even survived a tornado.  

We still used boxes if Frankie has to come inside.  This box fits a little better.
Frankie's Dogloo is great indoors or outdoors. 
No box? No Dogloo?  Under a table is fine. Warm cat is a bonus.

January 24, 2012

The Best of Morning

Day after the next round of Alabama tornadoes.  We did not get hit but we all did wake up wondering just what was blowing through the yard.

And the public tornado alarms in our area didn't go off again.  Again.

Frankie was outside spending the night in his hut.  He slept through it.

As a testament to what it takes make a tornado possible, the next day was so warm that Frankie spend the day wandering the yard, basking in the sun, and grazing on what grass and weeds he could find -- in January.

But I did insist that he sleep inside last night....just in case.

Frankie sleeps outside - we get tornadoes.

Frankie sleeps inside the gecko room - quiet night. 

This morning it was so nice that I didn't want Frankie to miss a thing.  It was not quite warm enough to go all the way outside so I opened the garage door.  Frankie, Rosie and I all basked  in the sun that shone into the garage.

My sister, Kelly, was so tickled by the sight that she took a picture.  That is me on my computer, and Frankie and Rosie basking.  Best of mornings.

January 15, 2012

The only solution is an old solution

One would think, looking at the recent (or not very recent) Frankie Tortoise Tails, that not much is happening with my buddy, Frankie.  One may even believe, that I've put Frankie outside for the winter and he is living in complete isolation in his warm and comfy outdoor Frankie Hut.

Greg planned for that.  After all, Greg spend many hours and $$ making Frankie's outdoor hut a place of safety and happiness for Frankie so the 85 pound tortoise would not need to come inside at all for the winter.

The new Frankie Winter To-Do list is simple.  Much more simple than last winter when I was bringing Frankie inside the house every night. 

In the morning we check the Frankie Hut temperature by looking at the temperature gage that is hung by the kitchen sink.   As long as the temperature gage says 55ºF to 75º F, Frankie is happy in his hut.  The evening Frankie chore is to go outside and double check that Frankie is inside his hut, safe and secure.

Inside the hut Frankie sleeps snug in his hay.  Frankie won't wander outside unless there is sun and the temperature is mild.  When the sun is out Frankie comes out to graze and bask even if the it is low as 45º F.  When he gets cold or the sun goes down Frankie returns to his hut.   Frankie is reliable about that.

Winter care of Frankie is pretty simple.  His kitty pool has water for when he needs it.  The yard grows winter type grasses and weeds for Frankie to graze.  For the most part, Frankie is completely self reliant.  There isn't much to do.  At all.

My sister, Kelly, stays here part time at our house.  She is the Frankie Sitter when we happen to get lucky enough to get to go out of town.

And Greg and I did get lucky to get to go out of town.

Kelly did not have a lot to do for Frankie.  For four days Frankie stayed inside his hut.  For four days I got texts saying "Frankie did not come out of his hut," "Frankie did not come out again," "Frankie still not come out," and finely "Isn't Frankie ever coming out of hut?"

So I called Kelly.

"Is he alive?"  Yes.

"Is he awake when you look inside?"  Yes.

"Have you tried carrots?"

Kelly tries carrots to lure Frankie outside of his warm cozy hut.  Not gonna work.  Frankie is not gonna be lured out of a perfectly warm and cozy hut.

Maybe I should have though of this.

When Greg and I get home several days later Frankie has yet to make an appearance outside of his hut.  A full check proves that Frankie is just fine.  He just doesn't want to get his feet cold. 

Would Frankie possibly spend the whole winter in his hut?  I miss Frankie. I can't stand the thought of seeing so little of Frankie so a whole new winter plan is made. 

Dragging him out of his hut is not easy but I drag him out.

Frankie's temporary fence from the backyard to the garage is put back up.  The old Dogloo is cleaned and brought inside the gecko room.

Yep.  I am prepared to walk Frankie back and forth every day from the gecko room just so I can spend time with Frankie.  If it's too cold outside, Frankie can spend the day inside with me.

Nope, Greg does not understand.  Frankie has a perfectly good heated outdoor enclosure. 

What can I say?  I love spending time with Frankie.