I gave up on waiting for more snow today and took a little team out. Usually I wait for enough snow to set a snowhook reliably, but that could be awhile with the way things are going around here! So I took a little team out, just five dogs.
This was Tehya's first on the sled run. She had a very good time and even seems to be figuring out that she has to run on the right side of the trail. She's very dominantly left-pawed and she'd like to run on that side all the time!
All things considered, the run went fairly well. My quick release broke before I got out of the yard, but the snub line(also known as the HOLY *&^&%%$@^!& rope) held so there was no loose team racing down the trail! We passed a loose dog without any trouble and when we were almost home we did a head on pass with my neighbor and his big team! It wasn't flawless, but it was pretty dang smooth, especially considering that my dogs haven't seen another team in a very long time! Thank doG Paxil doesn't want to retire yet! She's pretty good at that passing thing!
Hobo had a great time! He might even be quiet for an hour or two this afternoon!
Things to never say out loud..."They'll be fine", "That'll never happen" and "Heyoka's been really good lately". The last one I said on Saturday when Stuart got home. Sunday afternoon, Heyoka beat the crap out of Anvik! It's always Anvik who looses these battles, mainly because he coudn't fight his way out of a wet paper bag. He just doesn't have it in him. It was a short, quick fight since we were both home to break it up in a hurry. Anvik still spent yesterday at the vet getting the holes closed back up.
Anvik won't wear an e-collar. He freaks right out and actually injures himself. Somewhere in his past, he must have had a bad experience with one of those things. He has figured out the bite-not collar and won't keep it on either. Right now, he's wearing a t-shirt with a kitten on it! He looks silly, but the stitches and drains are staying in place and he's not freaking out about it!
It will be awhile before Tehya is allowed to play with him again!
Mushing season may be about to begin, but football season for me ended Sunday afternoon. Yah, I grew up in Saskatchewan and come from a long line of proud Rider fans. No, I am not one. I am a Stampeder fan, a die hard Stamp fan; the kind of fan who can recite the roster off the top of my head going back to the early 80's; who someday is naming a dog after Ken-Yon Rambo(because he's a great receiver and that's just a fabulous name!); who's brain is full of useless trivia about Stampeders players no one else can remember(Did you know Marshall Toner was the UofS male athlete of the year in multiple sports? Do you even know who Marshall Toner is without using Google? Didn't think so); who's parents called early today cuz they knew I wouldn't answer the phone after 2pm; who's most treasured possesions are a collection of autographed pictures and a practice football signed by the '86 team that my Mother somehow managed to get me for Christmas that year. Yup, she was the coolest Mom ever for that one! 21 years later, I still think it's amazing that she got me that ball!
I could probably type ten pages of why we lost today; I could blame Henry Burris for not showing up, for his inconsistency, for his damaged left shoulder; or Tom Higgins for sitting Brian Clarke as a healthy scratch; or for releasing damn near every veteran on the defensive line during training camp; I am still bitter that both Abdullah brothers were gone this year; maybe the defensive co-ordinator should have been fired months ago; for not using Joffrey Reynolds today; Maybe Ben Sankey should have come in; but in the end as it been all season, the Stamps did themselves in with penalty after penalty(Trey Young, you got lucky when the ref missed the retaliation call). Would they have got into Sandro D'Angelis range if the on-side kick had worked with 53 seconds left? It's unlikely, but this is the CFL and anything's possible; that's the great thing about the CFL! And Sandro does have one heck of a leg on him!
Potentially the greatest offense in CFL history, a receiving core with depth other teams can only dream about and for the third year in a row, watching games on CBC with the rest of the country in late November. One man will wear the blame for that. Tom Higgins lost his job today. The team just hasn't made it official yet. He knew he lost his job earlier this week when it was leaked to the media that John Hufnagel was already hired. That's not fair. I like Tom; I've defended his coaching strategy for years, but this is pro sports and eventually all coaches get fired. Tom Higgins is a class act and it's unfortunate he hasn't been treated with the same class by the organization. Good Luck, Tom.
I was a Stamp fan in 85 when we went 3-13 and almost folded in the off-season. I will be a Stamp fan in 2008 with a new roster to memorize--makes yelling at the TV so much easier. You know Burris can hear me if I yell loud enough, right? But for the next two weeks, I am returning to my Saskatchewan roots. GO RIDERS. If you are going to beat my team, the least you can do is win the Cup.
Neurotic or a little obsessive, either term could be used to describe me and my critters. It's also why Kayleigh spent Thursday at the vet clinic. Because I swear Wednesday night her right front leg was swollen and she was limping. I was not imagining that! Despite the fact that she had a full range of motion, pain free, and no swelling by the time the vet looked at her!
It did eventually turn out that I am not completely crazy! Kayleigh has a fatty lipoma under each front leg. Yah, she's a little hefty which isn't helping with those things. Her first owner starved her and food is still a very big deal to Kayleigh. She still worries that someday I am going to forget to feed her. Anyhoo, the lump under her right leg blocks lymphatic fluid from draining when she lays in certain positions. That causes her leg to swell and messes up her gait. It also vanishes when she moves around a bit. Which is why I saw it and why it had disappeared by the time Kim saw it!
Kayleigh went to the quarry to celebrate her "it's not serious and my Mom's not completely nuts" diagnosis. Nothing like a good roll in the snow to celebrate, at least when you are a malamute!
Pingo's not stiff, not sore, and not interested! She's done one training run this fall. She ran nicely, as well as she ever did and looked happy enough doing it. She was 10 in May. I don't think she's too old. She has a ton of energy when it comes to her tennis balls. I think she's just lost her drive. Maybe she'll show more interest when the noisy ATV can be parked and the sled comes out. She's a little spooky and the ATV has never been her favorite thing. It's never been mine either! Otherwise, I guess she's retired and can spend the winter lounging on the couch or her doghouse! Which means Tehya's leader training might be sped up and I'll have to catch Pingo's kid soon.
Sundin hasn't done a single run yet because he won't let me touch him! Happiest dog in the yard when left to his own devices; a confident, pulling machine when I can get him into a harness and a spooky, freaky little dog who much like some of my cats would prefer I just feed him and leave him alone! I do love the little freak!
Sitka the little wandering dog was returned to his owners this afternoon. He must have been playing in the green belt and got disorientated. His house is almost directly behind ours, if you could walk through the mess of fallen trees for a few kilometres!
He went home with a spiffy leather collar on. I hated that choke chain. He was thrilled to see his people, jumped all over them and then made himself comfy in front of the woodstove. Given the amount of noise he made last night, I'm sure my neighbors will be glad he didn't stay any longer too!
Never let the little things get you down, at least not for too long.
Two days is plenty of time to recover from surgery! A conehead and a couple dozen stitches are no reason not to enjoy some time with your best buddy!
If only humans could recover as fast and with as little complaining as dogs do!
The other lesson learned again--Leaving Ozzy in the main yard when no one is home to supervise his little troublemaking butt is a bad idea! Something bad will happen and it will usually involve a vet bill!
Sunday morning, I was awoken by some very noisy huskies who were very excited about the first snowfall of the season.
By Monday morning, it looked more like this! Actually, this was after running a couple kilometres.
The team looked more like this coming out of the yard--all messed up! Hook-up was a bit of a gong show, but once we got going, the run went quite well. It's much easier to leave smoothly when someone is home to help!
The little nutball is learning to lead and doing fairly well. She still has puppy brain so occasionally Paxil has to tell her off! Paxil does not put up with much from her leading partners!
Just coming back into our yard.
I need to increase their mileage very soon. Tehya wasn't tired for a second by a five mile loop. She was harassing Anvik before I even got his harness off!
Muskwa opted to stay on the couch, which he has claimed as his own recently. He's a little put out that Stuart left him behind this time!
I try to shop locally as much as I can. It doesn't always work out and Ebay is my friend, but I do look locally first!
I don't weld, unless one weekend course counts, but some of the stuff needed to make beads can be found in welding supply shops. For some weird reason there are several of those in Whitehorse. Apparently there's a lot of welding going on in this town!
Most of those suppliers have not been terribly helpful to me, with one notable exception--Yukon Explosives. I've spent alot of money there recently and probably will again--although not for awhile since I bought enough stainless steel welding rod today to make mandrels for at least a year!
I don't know the two guys' names that I've been dealing with, but I like them both! They never make me feel like I disturbed their day and more importantly, they never make me feel like a dumb girl--even when I'm asking dumb questions! For that reason alone, the next time I need more tools or my hubby needs more safety gear, I'll be heading back to Yukon Explosives.
Ooops, I haven't updated in weeks! Has been a little busy around here! My Mom came for a visit.
We went to the Yukon Suspension Bridge. The Tutshi is much more impressive up close than it is from the road!
The rapids right below the bridge--why I have a sea kayak and not a whitewater!
We saw some bears! 5 in one day including this little family.
We went to the Fox Lake burn to see how the forest is regenerating.
We had lunch at the Braeburn Lodge, where my hubby mysteriously showed up after spending the night in his broken down van on the side of the highway! After 20 hours with no food, ya gotta love a burger that's bigger than your head!
Now we are rushing around trying to get the yard ready for winter. Busy, busy, busy....
Tehya went for her very first run with the team tonight. Look at my little BabyDog go! She didn't have a clue what all the chaos was about when I got the ATV and harnesses out, but it took her a nanosecond to figure out the whole pulling thing! I need to do some work on the finer points, like staying on her side of the gangline and not snuggling up to Pacer, but the most important part is there--she pulled and she had fun doing it!
A tired puppy is a good puppy!
Thirsty little sled dog!
Pacer, my patient, calm, fabulous puppy training partner! Who would have ever thought that he would go from scared of his own shadow and untouchable to teaching a puppy how to be a sled dog!?
There was no getting out of the yard without Hobo. He may be 10 years old, but he is still the Psycho Puppy and he was one happy dog when he saw his harness!
And my precious Paxil who has made it clear that she is in no way ready to retire yet! She was flawless tonight, a feat made more impressive by the fact that she's spent the last five months napping beside the woodstove, doing nothing more strenuous than chewing a rawhide!
In a bizarre series of events, Milo, the handsome wandering dog, has found his way home. Turns out he escaped from a dogsitter who had some trouble retrieving the messages I left at his actual home. We ended up at the ER last night after Stuart tipped a Bobcat while doing some yard work. One of the ER nurses was the dogsitter Milo escaped from! His owner is a local doctor who has actually operated on Stuart before! The dogsitters are very good friends with our neighbors. So I dropped Milo off over there before heading back to the hospital and the nurse picked him up after his shift!
I think Milo enjoyed his stay with us. I'm sure Anvik enjoyed the break from Tehya's chewing! Given all the connections between our world and Milo's, I'm sure Tehya will see her new friend again!
This is what the Bobcat looks like this morning. I won't post a picture of my hubby's head--it's nasty! He's still in the hospital, but might be able to come home this afternoon. He will have a major headache for a long while, but other than a funky scar in his scalp, it doesn't look like he did any permanent damage this time!
I picked him up yesterday on the Alaska Highway near the Miles Canyon road. I watched him almost get run over and then he froze in the road. Not the safest place for a dog to hang out! He was quite happy to follow me to my truck! He's been quite happy the whole time he's been here. He's playing with Tehya right now. He's friendly, sweet and has his basic manners down pat. He was quiet all night, only woofs and woos when he sees me coming to visit him. Good with other dogs, neutered, has a collar on, even had a phone number on the collar--no answer, no response to my messages. He has an owner, I'm sure of that. I'm hoping they are just out of town and not ignoring me because they don't want him back......although, I kinda like the nameless little wandering guy.
The dogs, actually just Tehya, came up with another new reason to visit the vet on Friday. Tehya sampled some foxtails. Given the sheer number of those damn things around this summer, it's fairly amazing that this has never happened before. She came in the house gagging, trying to eat anything that fit in her mouth, pawing at her face. Outside she frantically ate dirt, grass, and guzzled water. I dropped her off at the clinic on my way to work after a long night of trying to settle her down.
The notes from the vet say "a large number of foxtails" were removed from Tehya's throat, tonsils and tongue. No wonder she was unhappy! She's on a major dose of prednisone for a few days. They got the foxtails all out, but her throat is very inflammed now. The pred will take care of that. Course it also makes her thristy and she peed in the house for the first time in months today!
She's still a little sedate today--for Tehya anyway. Other than that she seems to be wondering what all the fuss was about!
I didn't think she'd grown very much, but she has gained ten pounds since she was spayed in April. She doesn't fit in the big cat cages anymore. She actually got a dog kennel at the clinic!
Just when I think the dogs have thrown pretty much everything at me, they come up with something new. I've been to the vet plenty o'times with overweight dogs, which most often has turned out to be a thyroid issue. Ozzy has recently developed the opposite issue--skinny, skinny, skinny! No matter how much food I fed him, he just kept getting skinnier. I put him back on their winter, working kibble. No help. I fed him more than I feed the 130 pound malamute! Nothing. It was embarassing to take him for a walk. He looked like a stray who'd been starving for months! Given that Ozzy had parvo as a wee puppy, I was a bit freaked out that some horrible aftermath was lurking so off to the vet we went. Poor new Dr. Jessica! She must be sick of me already!
Ozzy is a timid little guy so he was quite happy to see a soft-spoken, lady vet. Still freaked out, but not nearly as bad as he has in the past. He didn't hide under any chairs and she was able to do a full exam. He even spent the day getting some extra tests done.
Ozzy's problem, as it turns out, is basically me! Despite a dramatic increase in his food, he still wasn't getting enough calories! So now wee Ozzy eats a Satin Ball for breakfast(a disgusting mix of high fat hamburger, oil, eggs and fiber stuff frozen into a ball!) and FOUR cups of Acana Extreme for dinnner. Approximately 5000 calories a day! It's insane! The lady at the Feed Store said they rarely stock the Extreme in the summer, cuz sane mushers(if there is such a thing) wouldn't feed it! It's meant to be fed to dogs are working their butts off at -40 or running the Quest or some other crazy amount of work. It is not meant to be fed to dog lounging around in the summer doing basically sweet bugger all! Ozzy loves it! Wolfs it down and I can get more calories into him without a big increase in volume.
Two weeks after his initial vet visit, Ozzy has gained 5.5 pounds! He needs to gain a few more to reach the "low end of normal", but he looks better already. You can't count his ribs from across the yard! He has to go in to get weighed a couple more times, just to make sure the weight sticks. There is a possibility that his thyroid is messed up, but hyperthyroidism is very rare in dogs and almost always means they have cancer. I'd rather not know if that is the case since I couldn't do a damn thing about it anyway. If he starts loosing again, I'll do more tests!
Now I'm going to have to figure how much he needs to eat to maintain his weight and how much MORE he'll need when he's actually working again. Good thing they don't all need to eat this much!
Because things are fairly calm right now! Nothing exciting to type about, unless my new washing machine counts. Are you officially a grown up when you are excited about new appliances? It's a Whirlpool and it has all kinds of buttons and lights and options....I've always been easily distracted by shiny things!
Speaking of shiny things and since new washing machines are very expensive! ....check out the new buttons on the sidebar--links to places I'm selling beads and jewellery. (Locals can check out the Westmark KI, Westmark Dawson and LillyPie Lotions too.)
And cuz I have to throw in a dog picture every chance I get:
Chase, Earle and Daisy ripping down the trail. (Daisy actually belongs to my neighbor, but don't tell her, she is quite sure she lives here!)
Because I am apparently a glutton for punishment, I brought another senior kitty home a few days ago. Meet Puff:
Doesn't she look freakin' thrilled to be here?
Actually she is doing better than she was in the shelter. She's eating and using the litter box, grooming, all that stuff that stressed out kitties just don't do! She's very sweet with people. She's gonna knock herself out giving headbonks! Not so sweet with the dogs. She reminds me of Kasha when she sees a dog. No canines are allowed direct eye contact and she is not adverse to splitting a nose or two open! For an old girl she's pretty quick with the claws. She tolerates the other cats, but I wouldn't say they are buddies yet!
Puff ended up at the shelter when her owner had to go into a nursing home. A good reminder for all of us with pets to make some kind of plan for their care in case we can't take care of them. (Bud, they are all yours! heee, heee) Her shelter papers say she's 10 but I suspect she's a few years older. She's very scrawny and her coat is in lousy shape. She just acts like more like a 13 year old kitty. Glacier, my very first kitty, is 9 next month and he acts nothing like Puff. Glacier still acts like a kitten pretty frequently.
Under that ratty coat is a gorgeous smoke grey furball. Hopefully a few weeks of good food and less stress will get her into better shape.
I'm not sure where the time went, but today is Earle's 8th Birthday.
Earle was my first husky. Muskwa was around first, but he wasn't then and never will be my dog. Earle is mine. He lulled me into a false sense of security. If all Huskies were as easy to contain, train and manage as Earle is, there would be no need for seven foot fences, locks on gate latches, dig proof fence bottoms, leashes, and there would never be an emergency trip to the vet resulting from a dog fight. Earle does none of those things. He likes every other dog on the planet; he likes every person he's ever met; he is incapable of fighting; he shares his treats and toys; he even likes the cats! Life would be much simplier if they were all like Earle! Happy Birthday sweet-pea! And to your brother too. I wish he was still here to grow old with you. And that's the only even kinda sad thing I'm typing tonight...
Sundin decided to tonight would be a good day for a little breakthough. Sundin has lived here for 19 months. In that time, not once has he approached me and of his own accord let me pet him. Chained up or cornered or in harness, Sundin is quite approachable. Untethered, he's a spooky, shy, timid little dog who wants next to nothing to do with humans. He was never abused, much of his behavior is genetic and wasn't compensated for when he was a wee one. He's seven years old now and progress is slow!
Tonight, Sundin trotted up to me, let me pet his ears and for a solid minute acted like he was enjoying it even! Those of you with normal, well adjusted dogs will think this is minor, but it almost brought me to happy tears. Then Ozzy stole Sundin's bone and he had to go get it back!