One of the many fun things about "being in dogs" is all the interesting people you meet, people who you would normally never meet. Going to the National every year is rather like going to a reunion, a chance to get together with people you rarely see otherwise. People you might email back and forth with, or who might be Facebook friends, but people you would never actually be able to get together with. Many of my puppy buyers also stay in touch with me, and some of them have become good friends. Unfortunately, Minnesota is not really a "destination" for most people, but some pass through on their way to other places and take the time to drop in for an hour or a day.
Last Saturday we had company on their way from NJ to California, doing a month long vacation. (Ah, to be retired and able to do that!) John & Loretta own a silly 6-year old Dal girl, a daughter of our silly 9-year old Josie. We tried to take pictures of the two together, but Cheyenne was more interested in rolling on the grass than sitting nicely for a picture! Loretta always sends Josie something at Christmas, and this time brought along a Wubba Kong which Argus and Josie are really enjoying.
This is the week to get some work done on the house, before Pauli's puppies arrive. The ceiling fan in the family room is making ugly noises - I guess they don't last forever, and that one has been running since we added the addition about 25 years ago. (Although we refer to that as the "new" part of the house, it's merely younger than the 100 year old part of the house!) We found a company called "My Husband Is Amazing" and they do great work on project like this that will also include fixing the light switch. The employees are musicians, who do handyman work on the side, and have given us excellent service.
Our gutters also need cleaning, and because this is a TALL 2-story house, it is not a home handyman job. We need some patching done too, although the gutters are actually in pretty good shape otherwise. My father paid to have gutter, soffit, and fascia installed on this house the summer David & I purchased it, almost 40 years ago. 40 years in July, the month before Jess was born. Guess the gutters have given us good service too, and we'll use the same company we've been satisfied with in the past.
Pauli has settled in well, but I don't think she will have a huge litter. Although she's hanging very low and everyone is guessing lots of pups, she's not very wide, not a lot wider than usual. I don't normally do it, but she'll go in for an x-ray this weekend. Just in case she runs into difficulties, I want to be sure we can get her into that clinic, rather than having to go to an emergency clinic. I use two different vet clinics, one for the day to day stuff, and one for reproductive work and more complex issues. Pauli has never been to the latter clinic and I want to be sure she has a record there. Because my first Dal died during a botched Caesarean, I always get nervy before a litter is due. Although I love raising pups, I do not like whelping pups.
Question for the day - why do stud dogs always seem to become "better" after they are dead? I'm always amazed how many people will use frozen semen from dogs they probably would not have bred to when they were alive, and why they never take the time to ask the right questions first. A dog that was used at stud in the past has a "record" (of more than just his show wins) and there is information available about both the good and bad things they produced. Oh well.