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This is the true story of the dog Tedward, a Labrador/German Shepherd mix, and his owner Caryl, who shared many interesting and often humorous adventures in the Colorado Rockies and other areas of the west. This dog was able to strike a bargain with the local coyote pack at Grouse Creek Livery, site of the old Meadow Mountain Ski area, 5 miles west of Vail. He became what one biologist termed an horary pack member, allowed to interact and even eat with these coyotes. The fact that Caryl chased 2 of the coyotes away from Tedward near the beginning of the first summer by shouting and galloping toward them on her horse Joe, probably contributed a great deal towards the coyotes' acceptance of Tedward. Caryl, a naturalist in her own right who has published articles on coyote behavior, believes that the coyotes decided t to kill Tedward out of respect for his human and horse protectors. Tedward thrilled many of the horse-riding guests, who sometimes got to witness this bold and adventurous dog playing with his wild cousins. Tedward possessed a remarkable ability to befriend animals of other species, and often to engage them in play. Caryl writes about her pet rat, Moon, who loved to nip Tedward's toes and leap on his back from the couch. Tedward was also an accomplished thief, as he was observed stealing a thick steak from the Grouse Creek kitchen counter and high-tailing it out the door, much to the anyance of the chuckwagon cook, Dan. He apparently could understand English, as he demonstrated to Caryl when she instructed him to guard the lodge and don't let anyone inside. (He had been banned by Dave from the chuckwagon site due to an unfortunate incident with a dead marmot.) There was positive proof that he followed those instructions to the letter. Tedward also had quite an impact on the people in his life, from Dave, the manager of Grouse Creek, whom he drove to distraction with his mischievous ways, to the frail little old ladies of the nursing homes, who
Caryl discovered her love for nature at a young age, thanks to her Dad and a certain pond on the outskirts of Wichita, Kansas. When a snapping turtle walked into their garage one day, Caryl's world was turned upside-down, not just because the turtle was so awesome in itself - which it definitely was, to a 4-year-old - but because of a whole new concept that arose in her mind when she asked her Dad, Who takes care of the turtle? and her Dad replied, No one, he's wild, so he takes care of himself! The idea that animals roamed free on the earth and didn't need human help was fascinating, and Caryl spent most of her 62 years increasing her knowledge of wildlife and the natural world in various ways. She majored in Environmental Studies at U.C. Davis, and worked for the National Park Service, the U.S. Forest Service, the Oceanic Society, the California Marine Mammal Center, N.O.A.A., Wolf Haven International, and other agencies, in addition to working on her own projects, such as an 18-month harbor seal behavior study in La Jolla and Pacific Grove, California. Her first animal-related story was published in the Los Altos Town Crier when Caryl was 9 years old. She has more recently written a set of articles called Harbor Seal Highlights, an article for Wolf Haven entitled The Coyote - Our Adaptable Genius, and 4 other articles on coyotes that were published by the Oklahoma Nature Conservancy Tallgrass Prairie Docent Newsletter. She has also written several children's stories, featuring Carlos, the Coyote Who Wouldn't Eat Meat. Caryl says the 2 authors that most inspired her are James Herriott and Farley Mowat. Currently Caryl and Poppy, her Irish Collie, and Honeydew, her cat, are enjoying the coastal environment and stealth camping while waiting for senior housing.