Saturday, January 15, 2011

Another Long Weekend - Of Work?

Josie can cuddle like this for hours.

The last long weekend for quite awhile.  Things have been hairy at work, and I could use a weekend to relax, but I probably won't be doing that!

Off to Mason City in a bit, to deliver Eddie to Lisen & Jerry.  He'll be staying for awhile, being an only Dal (living with a Brittany) and freeing up some time around here.   He looks pretty nice, and will eventually be for sale.  I won't keep him permanently, but want to run him on for awhile until I decide where he should end up.  Excellent temperament & personality, and as cute as can be.

With Eddie out of the picture for awhile, I can take down the puppy pen, scrub the tile, roll out the area rugs and have my basement back for puppy training.  Mariah really needs to work on her baiting and stacking if I hope to have her ready for the spring shows.  She's growing up in "one piece" rather than going through stages, as Janey says Mariah's brother is doing.  Remembering what a noodle Argus was at 4 months, I am not surprised that Boca looks the same way.

Good news that the girl in the newest Argus litter out in Oregon has two brown eyes and hears.  Spotting looks good too.  So far, so good.  If she comes to me as my stud fee pup, I'll probably also get her brother to sell, so if you might be looking for a handsome, but colorful puppy boy he may be that dog.  Stay tuned.

We're delighted that one of our favorite liver girls is scheduled to be bred to Argus this spring.  Again, we will do this for a puppy.  She has a terrific personality and has had a great career and will hopefully produce something extra nice.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

The Eyes Have It

Rough life!

Wish I had a better digital camera with a different flash.  Am so tired of the eye reflections on the liver Dals.  The supposed "red eye corrections" on my software and as a camera setting are totally useless.  Hard to justify the expense though, just for taking "fun" pictures.  I DO need to get a good sitting shot of Argus with a couple of his rosettes, and Ginger is going to have a clock made from it, but I'll probably have to schedule a sitting somewhere for that, now that Ron no longer takes pictures with his good cameras.  Hmmmm, maybe I can take pictures with those cameras - but do I want to fool around with a film camera?  Do they even make film?  Haven't used it in many years.

Will be glad when Eddie leaves this weekend and I have a chance to start working with Mariah more.  She really needs the attention (and training).  Eddie is a great little guy, but the puppy yapping when he and Mariah are playing is getting on my nerves.  She teases him and he yaps back.  I like my dogs quiet, especially before I have had my quota of morning coffee!

CERF exams scheduled for a week from Saturday.  Handy to have a clinic in the neighborhood two Saturdays a month.  I get Argus rechecked once a year, Josie is due for a recheck, and Mariah needs her first eye exam.  We got the Dal folks started on doing eye exams, but most of them did just one exam but never did a follow up.  Eye problems can develop at any age, so one exam really is not sufficient.  Also, eye exams can provide information about other health issues.  Because one of my former Vets did a very careful eye exam on Josie, he noticed something suspicious and suggested that I do a recheck with a Veterinary Ophthalmologist.  Josie's eyes had been done at 2 years  but by the age of 4 there were some changes.  The Veterinary Ophthalmologist followed up on what he was seeing, suggested that we have Josie's Vitamin E level checked, and we eventually found out that she had a problem with Vitamin E metabolism.  A very obscure problem, but easily treatable.  Josie was put on an inexpensive daily supplement and was spayed, just in case this was a hereditary problem - which it does not seem to have been.  There could have been serious consequences for this untreated problem, but Josie's done well and I just want to see what the VO thinks now.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Ready To Run

Get this pup off my treadmill!

Although Argus is not being actively campaigned this year, we try to keep all the dogs in good condition.  I like to think that my house dogs could go from sofa to show ring, with only a bath and perhaps whisker trimming.  I keep them all at the correct weight, and they get walked every single day.  Even when the snow is deep and the temps in the deep freeze, the dogs still get walked, if only around the block.  After I broke my ankle last year, Argus had to use the treadmill for real exercise, but Ron took over and walked him around the block everyday.  It's important for both their physical and mental health.  Trotting is the appropriate gait for conditioning a Dalmatian, especially for showing.  Heavy duty running is fun, but doesn't really develop the long easy trot that is a Dalmatian heritage, the one that allowed him to go with the horses for 8 to 10 hours a day.

Argus found a prize last night, a pound of butter still in the wrapper.  Must have dropped from someone's grocery bag.  I let him keep it and he carried it home with him and buried it in the snowbank at the corner of the block.  If I had called him to me and he had tried to hide what he had in his mouth I'd have known it was his favorite find, a cigarette pack!

Took my first fall on the ice last night but no damage done other than a slightly sore wrist this morning.  After the broken ankle ice event of last February, I have vowed to be extra careful, and fortunately the roads have not been very slippery this year.  I managed to find a bit of ice last night and am reminded that I need to wear my the ice grippers on my boots.  They aren't perfect but they help, and Ron Always wears them in the winter when walking dogs.  I find they slow me down, but another broken ankle would slow me down a lot more!

Chicken & veggies in the crockpot overnight, so the kitchen smells heavenly.  Broccoli salad in the fridge too.  I felt domestic last night, must have been the weather.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Dog Shows & Rumor Mills

Lucy's first American point.

Hope everyone enjoyed the YouTube link yesterday.  I thought it was absolutely hysterical, and it hits pretty close to home as I know of one vet who changed his career path because the clinic he worked at expected him to do precisely what the "vet" on the video was doing - to sell the clients products and services that they did not need and often could not afford.  That's one of the reasons we tell our puppy buyers NOT to consult with their vets about nutrition - they will sell you the product that is carried and promoted by the clinic, and there are far superior brands available for less money elsewhere.

It was a fun show weekend, with Lucy picking up her first points, handler by her Junior handler owner.  We were delighted with Lucy and are looking forward to bringing her down to show in a couple of months.  Pauli also went Best Of Breed on Sunday, against some top competition, handled by Jess. 

I did OK standing at ringside, but just sent in some entries for Argus for upcoming shows.  Both he and I need to get out before Westminster, and Argus adores staying in motels and laying on the bed watching TV.  Argus is also the target of a rumor being spread by people who should know better, and is supposedly the victim of some obscure crippling disease.  Although he hurt himself doing something stupid (either leaping off the deck in pursuit of squirrels, or trying to climb trees after them) last summer, he's totally mended and in fact won the Group his first time back in the ring in the fall, and followed that up with his 100th Best Of Breed and a Group placing.  Bad weather and lousy judges kept up home for much of the rest of the year, not any kind of health problems.  Why waste time and energy, or risk having an accident on ice covered roads to show to bad judges?

That is one of the downsides of dog shows, probably of all kinds of competitions.  People love to tell tales about other dogs and people, especially successful ones.  As we always say, "consider the source".  I find that rumors are often started to cover up or distract from other issues the rumor monger would rather you not wonder about.

Sunday, January 9, 2011


Too funny not to share.  I suspect that far too much of this is true, at least in some practices.