Tuna patrols his turf the same as Hunter Bunter always did. Hunter is on his way to doggie heaven if all goes well at his graduation from Furgatory this spring.
"What's that Louisa?"
Excuse me, my sister is saying something.
Louisa said there is not a separate heaven for dogs. Heaven is all inclusive.
Anyway, Hunter, the most famous King of the jungle, never cared for anyone with four legs to walk upon his ground, Tuna included. But there was nothing he could do about Tuna because that cat just moved in.
And being the new kid here in the black hole just outside Harmony Grove who always dressed in a tuxedo, Tuna followed that old dog everywhere and except for Hunter's signature bark, he copied all of Hunter's moves and even threw in some of his own.
The two used to sit out on the front deck making sure that all creatures stayed away.
Poor Cuggly, the lone opossum who tried to move in under the Stephen King bush in the front yard. When that didn't work out he decided to make a home under front the deck. The barks echoed terribly under there and Tuna could slip under the deck just as easily as he had been able to get inside the Stephen King bush.
After a week of nothing but harassment, Cuggly, was seen walking in the direction of the the wood shed, suitcase in hand, never to return.
Moles were barked out of their underground tunnels with severe hearing losses and migraine headaches. Tuna was right next to Hunter helping out with any digging that needed to be done for final evictions.
When the three of us, as in yours truly and the two hooligans would go for our morning walks, Hunter would stop to do his business and Tuna would do the same.
Once they both almost ran me over while chasing a deer. I survived the near fatal crash, but my coffee did not.
With Hunter here in spirit only now, a lot of wildlife are finding the gossip to be true and they have been working their way back into his old and forbidden jungle.
Mr. Cleaver and his bride with an overbite as bad as his own, have taken over the pond, dammed it up and are constantly rearranging the landscape out in the back. Tuna does not seem to be able to control them any more than anybody else can.
However, when it comes to the front yard, that is a whole other story.
I have run into more headless mice and rabbit guts than I care to, just bringing in the groceries.
One recent afternoon, I noticed out my kitchen window a couple deer were visiting the bird feeders.
And then I spotted Tuna sitting in front of the garage doors silently studying them.
His body language spoke of displeasure.
If I was reading him correctly he was not okay with these freeloaders helping themselves to the bird seed that his mother put out there for the birds.
That guy is so sweet.
But I was fine with it, really.
I watched Tuna straighten up from a crouch and then he strutted loudly and clearly on official business toward the two very tall bums.
The startled deer froze mid chew as this guy in a suit marched out to tell them to, "Scram!" with nothing more than a pair of googly eyes and a tail waving in the air.
The doe eyed girls jumped across the driveway hastily.
And then came the stand off.
"Sven," I hollered. "You might want to see this."
The braver of the two decided that this man in a tux was no more than a cat who was too big for his britches.
She came forward and stomped her foot.
Tuna held his ground.
She stepped forward a couple more feet and stomped her foot a few more times.
Tuna backed up a couple feet and held his new ground.
She came forward again with her chicken friend behind her and Tuna backed his ass under the Stephen King bush.
The deer stomped her foot several times to show that she was boss of his mother's bird feeder.
The very tip of Tuna's tail could be seen sticking out a hole in the top of the bush.
All three stood there.
Nobody knew what to do for the longest time.
And then Tuna sprang out of that bush at them all puffed out.
The surprise jack-in-the-box attack made the deer shit-your-pants-skittish. They trotted away, a little embarrassed and pretty nervous, the brave one turning around to stomp her displeasure a few more times.
An hour later Tuna was seen scanning the field in the direction the deer had disappeared, with a satisfied smirk on his face.