Monday, June 25, 2018

By baby brother--Jack

This weekend Lada and I made our semi-regular trip to Tenn to see my family.  Besides getting to see my parents & brother, I get to see my favorite little brother Jack.

My family has had him for  close to 14 years and he was about 3 when they adopted him. So his last few years haven't been all that active.  However whenever I come in the door, he comes to me to greet me.    Love the spoiled little dude.

His health has been in decline and he recently was recovering from surgery to remove cancer.   In spite of that, it was time.   He no longer could jump up on the couch or chair (His favorite things) and he couldn't get in the car to go to the park (his favorite potty place ). 

I said goodbye to him yesterday morning and today he crossed the rainbow bridge. 

I love you Jacky Jack and hope you're having fun with Max & Rusty!!!

One of his favorite positions

Car Ride!!!


Trying to sleep here!


Sissy...leave me alone...



Find another place to sit.

Yes, I'm gorgeous.

Dinner time!!!

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

4th Annual Cattle Dog Campout and Picnic (3rd year of attendance)

Photo by Laurie Sydorowicz
Another year in the books folks.   This past weekend we attended our 3rd Annual Cattle Dog Picnic.  Mama in her cast and all.

This year was by far the largest attendance. Additionally there was a guest speaker and performer with Eric and Angelyne-The Amazing Deaf Cattle Dog.  Amazing!   

Cooling down in the pool
This breed is definitely like no other.  As I've mentioned in a previous post or two, I have always loved dogs. Day 1 of my life there was a dog.    When it came time to get my very own, I had always thought I'd end up with a Golden Retriever.   Alas that's not what happened.  When it came time for puppy child number 6, it wasn't planned to get a Heeler, that was just the breed of the puppy we were getting.   

And that is all they wrote.   Nothing against any other breed, but this sweet, faithful, incredibly smart, and loving breed is the best.   This weekend there were close to 100 cattle dogs and while each is different, the similarities are quite obvious as well.

The one down side of this trip was my cast.  Last year we walked around and spoke to so many different folks.  This year I was stuck in my seat and was lucky enough to talk to a few that stopped at our tent to chat.    

My favorite part of the whole time is watching my kiddoes play in the water. I've been wanting to take them to swim for weeks, but the cast limited my being able to go.   So it brings me such great joy to see them have the time of their lives playing fetch in the water.    Little Girl didn't quite get as into it as Baby Boy because Mamma was on the outside of the fence, but she did have fun.

I really get a great sense of joy watching my little ones have so much fun.

It would have been fantastic if my older 2 could have been with us, but they are not travelers and the ride down would have driven me insane.

And they're not as comfortable around a large number of people and dogs as the others are.  There would have been lots of barking. 

I'll need to take them all to the dog beach nearer to us.

Should you ever consider adopting or going to a breeder for an Australian Cattle Dog, I beg of you to do your research.   These 2 have been the toughest to adjust to, but OH SO WORTH it.   (when I don't want to kill them).

If you stumbled upon this by chance and have a Cattle Dog, definitely look up the Annual Cattle Dog Camp out and Picnic.   It really is wonderful to meet up and talk about this breed with those who understand.    Oh and the dogs you meet.   
I loved loved cuddling with this girl

Most of the sweetest ACD's I've encountered are the deaf and blind ones.  Oh, they melt my heart.   If you don't fall in love with them after cuddling with one of're a lost cause ;)

Speaking of, a few things before I end ...First check out this wonderful organization.   If you have a few extra bucks, donate.  For $20 donation, get their 2018 calendar. My kiddoes make an appearance.
This is a wonderful organization and when the time comes, we'll most likely go through them or a similar one to add to the family (Four is our hard this won't be for awhile)

Second, our kids are up for June 2019.  If you have Facebook, follow the link to vote for them. Voting ends midnight of June 30.

Also above I gave you the link to Eric & Angelyne's webpage. Here's the link to their Facebook page as well.  Seriously check them out.   Angelyne-the Amazing DEAF Cattle Dog

And finally if you're interested in attending a future Cattle Dog Picnic, follow here : Annual Cattle Dog Campout and Picnic.    Now let's check out some more photos...
Lada says SMILE!!!!!


Loves that ball!!

This little dude -too cute

making new friends


This crew was pretty awesome.

Skye and Millie

Saturday, May 19, 2018

May 2018--sorry we've been away!

HI!!!! Hi. Hi. Hi. HI!!!!   Thanks for checking in!  We're sooooooo happy you're here. Well I know I am.  For those of you who are new- I'm going to introduce me.  I'm Lada. I'm the youngest and happiest and the one who loves my Mommy the mostest. I have the bestest Mommy in the whole wide world. 
I have 2 big sisters and 1 big brother. I love my sissies and my big brother.    They are the funnest and awesomest brother and sisters any dog has ever had.
Uhmmm my Mommy says that I'm supposed to tell you all about what we've been doing in all these months and months.  My Mommy is the bestest person ever.

Duchess had an owwwie and had to go to the doctor and he got rid of it.  She was all whooo whooo and then she got better. She looks better now.

Many times a week Mommy takes us to play care. It's this awesome place with other doggies and these really awesome ladies who love on me ...well some of the time.

Also we all go to this big park that is just sooo awesome cause we gets to play with our ball. Peryn and I go all nuts-o.  We love it soo much and can't wait to get there. We know the way and we just get so so so happy.

Athena- i love my sister. She wasn't allowed to go with us to play care for a little while.  She was hurting and her leg bothered her.  She's feeling better and was at play care with us again. Yay.

Duchess tries to have fun without me when we're there.   I mean you can't have any fun without me. I get yelled at when I try to bug Duchess when she plays with her friends.   Why?  I"m fun.  I love my big sissy.

I have a pretty good life though. Me n Mommy go on car rides a lot. The really really really long type. We usually end up with Gwamma and Gwampa when we go on those rides.  I love Gwamma. Jack-my uncle is ok. Uncle Davey is cool. Gwampa ...makes me nervous. But we're getting better at coming to an understanding.

I have cool friends at play care and at home. There's Master Chief and Bridger. Then there are my hooman friends like Kara and Emily and Jennifer and Marlo.

And always Peryn is my best-est friend (after Mommy).   I love my Daddy too.   Don't get me wrong, after Mommy he's pretty darn awesome.

HI!! I'm back. Momma says I have a bad attention span.   This is ....Mommy says 3 ...This is taking me three days to write cause I have to keep my eye out on Momma. When momma leaves, I do too.

Today Momma took me to the store with her.  We went to that big place with all the stuff... I have been there a lot and they usually give me treats and love on me.

OH! OH! OH!. Mommy gots this machine for us. It throws balls.  IT's like the awesomest.  I stand right there and wait till I hear it get ready to throw the ball and then I catch it really quick.   Peryn gets mad cause he can't chase it then.    It really is awesome but takes forever between throwing balls. 

so anyways I think that's all ...if not I"m sure Momma will tell you all about it.

 Hello Everyone.    Thanks to Lada for giving everyone a quick rundown. 

It's been a busy /crazy few months for both the humans and the canines. 
Let's begin with Ms Duchess..She continues to thrive. Playcare has done wonders and she is more interactive all around. 
She's still a bit stand offish in not wanting to give any affection, but she's willingly coming to get said affection.

She landed in the vet's office twice for injuries/surgery.   In January, Duchess was "sliced" on the side -in two places- by what we believe to be a frayed steel tie out cord.  She required stitches and had to take it easy for a bit. 

Her hair is still growing back from where they shaved it, but she's good to go otherwise.

In March, we had a skin tag that was growing by her eye removed.  She healed quickly from that and is her normal demanding self. 

She still has a thing for her Boyfriend Oscar and often plays with another dog Kavik (Husky--her peeps).  We really believe she's blossomed into a wonderful dog the past year and a half. 

She unfortunately still gets picked on quite a bit by her baby sister (Lada), sometime full on body slams, but she never bites her or hurts her.  She's a sweet soul and we both adore her. 

She's very demanding about getting treats. She expects them in the morning, when we come home, when we get up, and anytime we're in the kitchen.  She doesn't always get them, but she tries.

She loves 2 of our neighbors..well 3.  She adores our neighbors Lissette and Mike. Anytime she's out she's always over trying to check out if they're out.  She will always say Hello. 
Then there's Kara. Duchess loves her (all the kids do).  She helps us out with checking in on them when our schedule gets wonky and she spoils them.   Therefore, they love her.

I see her age creeping up in small ways.  Her jumping up on things these days is more cautious. Her zoomies around the yard aren't really a thing anymore because of little sister, but when she's not around, Duchess tries to do them.

We started taking the kids to a  new dog park this year. Duchess loves it to death. It's large enough that she can do her perimeter sweep, run -run-run, and not be too bothered by other dogs.  She is a beautiful dog when she is there. Happy and free.    There is nothing like it.

She still loves to sunbathe and when I can, I make sure I let her out to do so.

Ms Athena

The whole reason this blog was even started.   For the most part, she is a happy dog.   Loves her pack and loves going to the park and day care.

However, her history and her age are catching up to her.
She frequently is over doing it or getting beat up.  Watching her limp or run awkwardly at the park is heartbreaking.
She tries so hard.

Recently she over did it at Play Care and a few days later we were at the park where her 2 younger siblings knocked her down.  Then she went down playing with other dogs.

We limited her activities for 2 weeks-which included not going to play care.  She healed and is back to having fun.

Now either she is ignoring me or she's starting to lose her hearing.   I have to nearly scream for her when she's outside.   Even in the house you need to speak loudly to her.   
She looks healthy and has a glow to her, so you can't tell how old she is other than watching her.

She really is a sweet and happy dog.   That being said, she's always been a barker.   She vocalizes her emotions and has since day one.  Whines and barks depending on the circumstances.
Lately it's all bark bark bark.   It is high pitched and annoying. She gets yelled at by her dad a lot because she just barks away and makes it difficult to have a conversation.   
And Lord if the little ones start playing with anything or anyone, the barking starts.   It is VERY VERY ANNOYING.

However she never takes our yelling at her to calm down to heart.   She just continues to be a happy girl.

The dog bed pictured was won in at a fundraiser.  ALL the dogs love it and they often lose their spot if they get up..but Athena enjoys it the most.  She will lie next to it if it is occupied.  In fact, she's on it as I type..

Peryn. Peryn. Peryn.   Lord do I love this boy.  He's such a handsome dude.   HOWEVER now that he's older, I can tell you more about his personality.

First, he's not overtly affectionate.  He does not want you to cuddle with him or pet him unless he deems it.   Its on HIS terms not yours.   We try to cuddle up with him when he's lying on the couch and he'll get up and leave.   However there are days where he will climb up on you and pin you there while he licks you to death.   Only then may you pet and cuddle.

His first love is his toys. Balls and tugs.   He will ignore food, dogs, and people if you have one of those items in your hand and are playing with him.     There are times at the dog park we won't bring one of his toys because we want him to play with other dogs.   He does like playing with other dogs, but he HAS TO have a ball in his mouth if he does.

He and Lada love to play with their herding ball at the dog park.  They go nuts with it.  They've destroyed all of our landscaping and landscaping lights playing with that dang ball.

We have a drawer of confiscated toys because he DOESN'T LET UP!!!!  Don't worry he has a tub full of more toys.  The little devil has even broken into drawers and storage cubes to pull out the new and unopened toys.   Dude is serious about his toys.

I finally took the plunge and purchased a automatic ball thrower.   HE LOVES IT.  Outside I got him to drop the ball into the machine after he returns from fetching it.   Inside he becomes an idiot and I am the one to load the balls. 

Lada loves it too.  She irritates him by staying right at the opening and getting the ball as soon as it comes out of the machine.

He still loves his family and kind of acts like the protector of the pack. He waits till they're all in or going up stairs or whatever they're doing as a pack.   He reminds me of Galen when he does that.

He definitely keeps Lada in line.  If he doesn't like what she's doing or we're yelling at her, he snaps at her to stop.

He and Lada are still BFFs.   Lada ADORES him.  He adores her.

 Here they are playing with his tether tug.   He loves that thing and has since he was a pup.
She won't touch it unless he's playing with it.

They do have a lot of fun together. 

He really is such a good dog. He's also extremely sensitive.  If I yell at him, he takes it to heart. If I yell at the other dogs, he takes it to heart.   He does not want to disappoint us and it breaks my heart when he gets bent out of shape when I'm yelling at another dog.

The other half -Lada.   As you read up there, Lada is a bit high-strung. She doesn't do anything in moderation.She is go-go-go-go. all the time.

I call her Psycho or Wild Child.  She has a big prey drive.   Where we used to allow her off leash so she could play with her neighbor pals, she's now on leash.   She tends to take off into the woods  and runs fast and wild.  She comes back muddy, wet, missing tags, etc... She ALWAYS comes back, but it's irritating when it's crappy out and we can't go after her. 

She does NOT like to be ignored and she DOES NOT like to share her Mommy....especially in bed. 

Peryn loves to climb up me when I'm in bed and lie right on top of me to lick me while I love on him.   Lada gets all up in arms and starts making these sounds--whiny low pitched sounds when this happens. Sometimes it's nothing more than the whining. Other times she will crawl in between him and my face to prevent him from getting any more loving.   Cracks me up.

She's now 25.5 lbs.   So she's grown a bit.  She's ALL muscle.   She defies gravity and she loves hard. She is a big brat to Duchess and her and Athena got their own bond.     She often will find a toy and play by herself and it looks like she's having a blast. 

She is a sweet girl , but again VERY HIGH STRUNG.  I've given up on training with her because she can not concentrate to do it. 

She's super stealthy, so she tends to sneak out when we aren't careful. 

She is a WONDERFUL travel companion and made several more trips to Tenn with me. When she's down there, she is the perfect dog.

She is a lot of work, but I adore her.
At play care she's made some new friends of her own size.   She looks like she's having a blast in all the pics they post.   Makes me happy.

So that's what's what with the pups.   Will have more pictures soon as we're heading to the 4th Annual Cattle Dog Campout and meet up!!

Thursday, December 14, 2017

SPOTLIGHT ON......Duchess-the (no longer) loner

Been meaning to do this for weeks, but I get so tired at the end of the day --when there is time.

SO I'm going to talk about Duchess.  
Duchess on PetFinder

 We adopted Duchess into our tiny pack that consisted of Galen & Sheba. She was a very good addition to the family.   She was very non-responsive to the older two and was accepted rather easily.

I would brag about Duchess as being "chill".  She was laid back and there were no issues.

First pic of the new pack
Eventually as she became accustomed to the family, she began to show her true colors. She would often try to get Sheba to play and would often be found playing with her food.  She was a doll and made me smile often.

As time marched on and nature took it's course, we lost Galen and it was just Duchess and Sheba.  Duchess was the perfect companion to Sheba. She definitely helped her through her grief of losing her Life mate.   

Next came Athena and Duchess liked her as well. In the beginning the 2 of them would be wrestling and playing in the house.   It made me smile knowing Duchess had a playmate.  

We began bringing the girls to the park and Duchess would go off by herself. She would sniff the entire perimeter, stay by herself, and would not play with any dog.   She was "fence aggressive" to new dogs entering the park and we had to watch for new people entering all the time.

As Athena became more socialized, she gained new friends and didn't want to play with Duchess.  In fact, these two just didn't seem to click the way any of my previous dog combos had.   

1st family photo with Athena
Any park, any time that we took them to, Duchess was off by herself.  She might interact with a bigger dog here or there, but nothing ever came from it.

We started taking them to this awesome park in the country that was almost always empty and huge. Duchess LOVED it. She loved to run free and do her own thing. The happiest I'd ever seen her was at this park.

Duchess and Athena

Along comes Peryn.  The girls were NOT happy when we first brought Peryn home.  Duchess loved going to pick him up as she got to run with a pony, but the actual coming home..not a fan.

Yet, within a week, Duchess had a playmate.  Not just any who took her on. It didn't matter if she towered over him, Peryn would dish it out as much as he took it.   

Still at parks, Duchess did her own thing.  She may allow her siblings to tag along on her perimeter searches, but she still didn't participate.     We joined a husky group because she was a husky, but our husky NEVER played.

At the beginning of this year, right after adopting Lada, we began sending Duchess and Athena to daycare with Peryn.   I was concerned at first due to her disinterested attitude.  At first, I felt my fear was a bit justified.  In the photos they posted from daycare, she was just lying there. She never looked like she played.  

Through 2017 a few other things in addition to daycare came to play.
First,  Lada is obsessed with her big sister. She might antagonize her and interrupt her play, but Lada adores Duchess.  And I really think Duchess loves Lada.  In spite of how they play, she's never "attacked" Lada..and she's had reason to.

And with the 2 puppies, more park visits were happening. The most shocking thing started happening. 
We like this blue dude.
At the dog park & at meets, Duchess didn't necessarily go off on her own.  She'd be right there in the middle of the chaos. Now, she wasn't necessarily playing, but she wouldn't be off by herself the whole time.   She would occasionally play a bit with the right dog, but she wasn't really a longer any longer.  

The big change is when I went to drop them off at daycare one morning.  Normally the hub would do it, but for whatever reason, I did this morning.  Duchess started getting super excited and howling in the car on the way to day care.    Then it eventually turned into going nutts in the drop off area.   Then it was knowing it was day care day.

Big Sis & baby sis

Duchess & Lada

Duchess & her shadow

The BIG change is when the owner of the daycare tells me she's got a "crush".  Duchess actually plays with other dogs and especially one she likes to follow around. 

 So you're reading it right here. Duchess, once a loner, now has a boyfriend!!!  

Playcare and her little annoying sister have forced this loner into a participator.    Who'd of thunk it?

I think I love you
near the boyfriend
She's becoming a stalker
Duchess and her love