I must make a confession.
It’s about a mule deer doe I have named Dot. I call her Dot because she has a conspicuous white spot on her forehead.
Dot emerges almost daily from the heavy sage and bull pine below my house. She is quite friendly and allowed me to approach her early on.
Here is my confession: I have been doing bad things with the deer.
Those of you who immediately went sexual are either from East Helena, Montana, or you need to spend a bit more time watching the Disney Channel.
I’m not talking about sex.
I have been feeding the deer. I know all the reasons that feeding deer is bad. It removes their natural fear of humans, skews their lifestyle in unnatural ways, and so forth.
Thing is, Dot started this. One of the first times I saw her, she came right up and sniffed at me as I sat in my hot tub. She regularly approaches the house, even if I am standing on the deck.
As far as the feeding goes, I throw apple cores, broccoli ends, carrot ends, and that kind of thing out back so she can have them. And then, of course, there is an assortment of fruit and vegetables Kevin and I have scattered around the place when we shoot the potato gun.
I have not seen Dot for a couple days. She comes and goes on her own schedule. Hunting season is just around the corner as I write this. Honestly, I hope she sticks around here for the whole of the season—stalked by nothing more than my incompetent 40 pounds of housecat.
I am fond of her.