My dog needs a job.
She's an outdoor dog and she seems, I dunno, fairly happy.
She's got a half acre to roam, a small collection of toys, and birds to chase.
But there's something missing. I can sense it.
Anytime I approach the back door she jumps to attention. She's eager to do something. Anything.
And I'm at a loss for what to do.
I wonder if animals have dreams of doing more in life.
Does my dog dream of Lassie-like adventures?
We don't have a nearby mine-shaft... so she has no one to rescue.
My dog clearly wants a job. And...
Until I figure out what that job can be I'm looking for clues.
And I now have something to show her.
America's cities are cash strapped. That's no secret.
America's cities have landscaping issues... these include keeping our roadsides beautiful. Weeds grow... it's something they do very well. We can pull them; that's labor intensive. We can spray them; that can be bad for the environment. Another problem- some weeds grow in those hard to reach places.
Facing this challenge, the City of Mesa has hired goats. That's right- goats are the new weed depletion crew.
They'll work for food.
And, humble employees that they are, they don't stand by the roadside with a sign, advertising the fact.
The City of Mesa, according to a Fox News report, has a six month contract with Arizona Herdsman Eco Goats. Up to 80 goats will patrol retention basins and thin out the thick vegetation that is so challenging.
"Utilities Department Water Division Director Bill Haney says the design of the retention pounds and the amount of vegetation at the site make it difficult to use machines and to keep down the weeds. Officials hope the goats can do a better job, saying in a statement they'll "eat just about anything resembling a plant." Besides, Haney says goats are a "more sustainable and environmentally responsible form of weed control.""
Here is a summary of benefits, according to the Mesa Tribune:
- Unlike landscape machinery, goats don't pollute (unless you want to count methane)
- They like to eat (and don't request overtime)
- They can get to those hard to reach places (Click on that link- it's an awesome picture)
- They're a pesticide/chemical free solution
If ever you're in Mesa and want to see the goats at work, travel the red mountain portion of the 202 until you're near the eastern portion of the 101. You'll find them on the south side of the road.
I may strap the dog into a seat belt, show her what they're up to and see if she has any creative ideas.
Until then, she's been polishing her resume.
When not giving career advice to family pets, Chuck Willman performs real estate in the Phoenix Metro area.
NOTE: The dog featured above is not mine... it's stock photography. You may have noticed the dilemma... my dog is female and I couldn't find any photos depicting a feminine canine in smart/business casual. So... dog-wearing-a-tie was the best I could do.