Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Happy Birthday Delta and Antare....

My timid little boys turn 5 today. Normally this would not be a huge deal, but since there was a time I never expected to see Delta again, it is this year!

Delta spent his day laying in the snow and hiding his Kong underneath him! He's still the most timid creature I've ever met, but he is making some progress. He takes food from my hand now and I can catch him pretty quickly most of the time.

Antare has always been the braver of the duo. Still timid, but not quite the same degree of terror.

Antare celebrating by discovering the joys of napping on the futon(which is really a giant dog bed). This was the first time he's ever been brave enough to get up on the furniture.

Apparently, Earle told him it was ok. Antare does love other dogs and Earle in particular. If Earle said it was safe, there's no question Antare would believe him!

Happy Birthday boys.

Friday, October 27, 2006


Anvik is recovering well from his surgery. He is completely unaware that he is supposed to be quiet and calm. He's not good at that. The e-collar freaked him out to no end. That was not happening! He wears a doggy jacket when I can't supervise him. He's blown one stitch, but that might be a good thing.

He was back to the vet on Monday with a collection of fluid under the incision. He potentially needed more surgery to put in a drain. The blown stitch has taken care of that! All the fluid leaked out on it's own. He is on antibiotics for another week.

Chum is also doing very well. My annoying, loud, little nutball is back in fine form!

Hard to tell from this picture, but he's really much more energetic. Maybe a little too much so sometimes. Tonight he managed to instigate a fight! Stuart often says Chum is alive because he's fast and Heyoka can't catch him. Chum got Heyoka wound up, Heyoka went running by Bandit, Bandit thought Heyoka was after his stuff, Bandit lunged, Heyoka responded with teeth, Pingo jumped in just for fun(highly unusual for her). End result, two punctures on Bandit, one on Heyoka both in the exact same spot, right by their eyes. It looks much worse than it really is though. They are both spending the night inside, Ban in the house, Heyoka in the shop. Hopefully by the morning, they will have forgotten all about it, although they will be segregated from each other for awhile, at least when no one is home.

Friday, October 20, 2006

Happy Birthday Muskwa....

Muskwa turns 9 today! Muskwa was the my introduction to the breed that has since taken over my life! I'd never met a husky before he came along. There were plenty of days in those early years that I wished I still hadn't met a husky. That dog drove me to the bottle and to tears repeatedly. Muskwa's puppyhood lasted at least four years! He is too damn smart for his own good! He's mellowed with age and we've worked out our differences! He's still not my dog. I am the food lady, the one he goes to when he doesn't feel well, when he wants something or when he needs some extra attention. I am not and never will be the one he listens to! He is a husky after all. He listens only when it suits him!

Happy Birthday, Muskwa. Even when you're driving me nuts, I do love you!

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Poor Annikins...

A couple weeks back, Anvik developed what we thought was an abscess on his right side. Antibiotics did shrink it, but didn't get rid of it. So Anvik went back to the vet yesterday and the desicion was made to take the lump out. (Anvik would like to note that he had no input into this decision, despite his many attempts to get his point across). Today Anvik had surgery--dogs get quick health care!

The lump is some kind of granuloma, which could mean he had a foreign object that his body tried to encase, like a bit of porcupine quill. He hasn't been into anything like that since he got here, but who knows what he got up to in his former life! It could also be "some kind of mass". Isn't that definitive? The vet saved a piece of it that could be sent out for a biopsy. Regardless of what it actually is, the treatment would likely be the same--cut it out! Dr. Kim was very aggressive in his removal and took wide margins. Hopefully it won't regrow and Annikins will be fine!

Anvik has a big wound that I imagine he will play up for all it's worth for as long as he can! He did treat the clinic staff to the "Anvik Death Howl" all day long, except for the brief time he was knocked out! By his behavior tonight, it's hard to tell he had surgery at all. He very hungry and very noisy. I have been throughly told off for leaving him at the clinic all day!

He'll be telling me off again soon when he's not allowed to come for a run. This was taken yesterday. He's doing alright in lead. Paxil is a good teacher. It's snowing like crazy again tonight. Anvik is not going to be happy with being left behind. His harness would rub on the surgical site so he's not supposed to run til the stitches come out in a couple weeks! He should be completely insane by then--or I will be!

And who did I run into at the clinic tonight? dogsled_stacie We have all paws crossed for Ripper's quick and complete recovery!

Friday, October 13, 2006

Thanks, Uncle Randy...

The dogs' Uncle Randy(who is really not related to us at all!) has provided us with some moose scraps and bones. Mother Nature threw in some snow today. It all adds up to happy, quiet dogs, which leads to happy, not complaining neighbors and an owner much less likely to be heard screaming SHUT UP at 2am! It's a good thing!

Earle likes to chow down while standing up.

Ozzy prefers to save his energy for beating up his brother(Mac)and lounges while he eats.

Franklin likes to surround himself with chunks of meat and settle in!

Preacher may be old, blind and basically falling apart, but he can still eat with the best of 'em! When Preacher no longer wants to eat, I will know that it is time to help him into the next world. God help any of the young dogs who tries to take that bone from him. The ol' boy can still hold his own and he won't hesitate to use his teeth on the upstart youngsters! Age has it's privledges! You can get away with being a cranky jerk much more often when you are 13!

Thanks, Randy! We appreciate it! Nothing buys a couple hours of pure quiet around here like a batch of fresh moose bones!

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Sweet Relief!

Ever been happy to have a vet tell you something is wrong with your dog? Perhaps I should back up a bit....

Rewind to Monday afternoon, running a little five dog team, a mere 5km run. Less than 2km into the run, Chum, a five year old Alaskan Husky who has never had any health problems, collapses. Literally goes from running as well as he ever does to limp on the ground in a milli-second! Slam on the brakes, run up to him. He's already getting back on his feet and seems fine. I let him run loose until I found a spot I could turn the team around. Part way back, Chum starts acting like himself, which essentially means he was being a huge pain in the tail to my leaders. Ok, buddy, apparently you feel fine and you can trot along in the team for the last 1km home. Couple hundred yards later, same thing happens--flat on the ground! Did a face plant that time. I tried to convinvce him that he should sit on my lap on the ATV the rest of the way home, but he was having none of that. Trotted the rest of the way home, much more sedately and slowly than normal, but under his own power.

Freaked out musher, that would be me, calls the vet as soon as I was back in the yard. Since he seems stable and the clinic is already full of emergencies, Chum waits til Wednesday to go in and see what the heck is wrong with him. Intial results are not promising--abnormal heart rhythm, anemia, sore knee. Good news is it's a not a spinal problem. Bad news is it could be any one of at least a dozen things, some treatable, some fatal in a hurry.

The lovely Dr. Candace Marche, who's time I have been monopolizing lately, runs an ECG and a wide array of blood tests. Results are in today. Heart rhythm is a wee bit off, but not concerning, according to a canine cardiologist in North Carolina! I did find it slightly amusing that my dog got advanced testing and a consult from a specialist in a different country with full results back in 24 hours. If I needed those same tests, the wait would be months and who knows how long it would take to get the results back! Anemia is definately there. In dogs anemia is always a sign that something else is going wrong. In Chum's case, his thyroid has shut right down. Although it is rare, sudden collapse during exercise is a symptom of hypothyroidism! As are all the other weird little things that have made me go hmmmmm about Chum recently! That tiny little gland controls a whole lot of other stuff!

The even better news--it's easy and relatively cheap to treat. Earle and Preacher already take thyroid supplements so I already have the pills at home. Chum started his medication tonight and within a month, I should have my yappy, annoying, hyperactive boy back. As bad as those things may sound, I can't freaking wait to tell Chum "that's enough, shut up now" again!

Monday, October 02, 2006

Happy Birthday Felicia..

The mini-mite turns four today! Felicia was born with deformed front legs. She wasn't supposed to make it out of early kittenhood. Once she beat that challenge, thanks to an adoptive momma cat at the shelter, she wasn't supposed to be able to do the things "normal" cats do. Personally, I've never met a normal cat, but Felicia is able to do all the things the other furry meowing freaks around here do. She can get on the cupboard; she runs across the table; she picks on Ivy; chases the big cats, and enjoys a good hit of nip at least once a week.

She just does it all on three legs! Don't tell her she's handicapped, she'll wack you with her deformed paw--it's fused at the perfect angle for wacking humans, bopping big cats on the head and has been used to split a few dog noses from time to time!

Happy Birthday little princess. May you continue to defy the odds for many more years.