I walked out the front door and we both froze, looking at each other.
After a moment, she walked calmly off at an angle, then paused. Traditionally, that means she was trying to lead me away from a pup. Interesting!
Usually, when I encounter an animal near the house, I try to be cool and low-key toward them – generally, they’re my neighbors. The only encounters that make me a bit nervous are the bears, because bears are territorial, grumpy, and dangerous.
I was heading to the shop, so I hopped in the truck and started down the driveway, but then I saw a little movement. Fox pup! Poor little thing must have been very new to the world because it didn’t know to run oblique to the driveway, and started running ahead of me. I was just idling along, waiting for the poor thing to make a sensible move, but it took a while.
As I idled past, it turned and popped its head up to watch me, looking absolutely adorable, but I had already stowed my phone and I lost the chance for a good portrait.
I’m never sure what to do; the photographer in me wants to chase after the critter waving my phone at it, but it doesn’t seem respectful and I guess I always hope that if I’m not threatening I may get another, better, chance to say hello. That actually happened a few years ago with the bobcat. I saw it a few times down by the pond and was always distant and non-aggressive. Then one day I came out and it was sitting tucka-paw like a housecat, on the hood of my jeep. I turned slowly (not looking at the cat) and went back into the house and got my good camera, then stepped back onto the porch and started taking pictures of the cat, who fairly quickly decided I was being uncool and slid off down the side of the car and slunk into the tall grass, keeping the car between itself and me and my camera.
When I looked down at the camera to see if I had gotten any good shots, it was blinking “NO CARD” at me.