Monday, August 30, 2010

News from the Vacation Front

UHM and I are taking a quick, 4 day vacation in Bar Harbor, ME.  Or, if you are a local, "Ba Ha Ba."  It's a lovely little seaside town that's also very dog-friendly.  Makes me sad we don't have a single member of The Horde along but, I sort of think the town might not be so dog friendly if there were a Horde invasion - even a small scale one.

BTW, you know you are becoming completely obsessed w/dogs and dog shows when the majority of things you buy on a vacation trip you justify with, "I can wear that to show...."  I've gotten a very cool, olive green dress and am contemplating a longer, raisin-colored skirt for showing Miss Georgia.  Only problem?  Neither has pockets.  So I'll either be doing the armband bait holder or the "cheek pouch" - which really grosses UHM out.

UHM is out on a boat this afternoon, attempting to see whales.  That was the point of this whole trip - so she could see whales.  We went out yesterday morning and saw 1 finback whale.  She's hoping for more today.  Cross your fingers!

Be home tomorrow evening late.  Can't wait to see Sam, Ginny, Moira and Mr. B!

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Recap of Greensboro Results

Wednesday - 1st 6-9 puppy bitches
Thursday - 2nd 6-9 puppy bitches
Friday - 2nd 6-9 puppy bitches
Saturday - BISweeps puppy
                 4th (out of 4, WTH?) 6-9 puppy bitches, regular classes
Sunday - 2nd 6-9 puppy bitches

Georgia and her great niece were at the top of the 6-9 class every day but Saturday so it was a good weekend for the family.  As Georgia's inaugural show, I'm thrilled.  Liz said she was an evil red dog on Saturday, pulling at her skirt on the down and back :)  Today she was better behaved, probably because she got a stern warning as she was coming off the table.  Judge's comment on her today was "she's adorable."  We already knew that but, it's good to hear it from a judge too.  Cathy Ochs-Cline, a very well-respected breeder judge, was judging today.

Georgia "comes home" on September 4th.  After that it will be a match on Sept 25th, a small show on Oct 2-3, a trip to Ohio for a herding clinic w/Dana Hasemeier Oct 9-10, and then the CCWCC specialty and supported entry on Oct 16-17.  After that, we'll have to see what happens.  November and December are super busy months at work for me so any more showing might have to wait until after the first of the year.  Who knows though, I might try to find some sort of performance class for her to take in that time.  Anything to keep that little mind occupied and learning.   I'd love to train her to do modeling work, like her daddy and half-brother, Logan.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

News from North Carolina

Miss Georgia was Best Puppy in Sweeps!  Judging was breeder-judge Cindy Bossi!  Wahooo!

Liz - Georgia's breeder and most excellent handler this weekend -  says she got a picture so, as soon as it arrives I will post it.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Miss Georgia

Miss Georgia, the soon-to-be newest Horde Member, is making her breed ring debut this week at the Greensboro, NC cluster.  So far she's placed 1st, 2nd and 2nd in the 6-9 month puppy bitch class.  It's killing me that I'm not down there to see but Liz H. and Karen L. have been wonderful about my calls and texts begging for results.  Liz says Georgia is having a great time and already has this show dog thing figured out.  I think that's great - then she can teach me how to be a handler.

Rumor has it that Sister Scout is also doing well down south.  I think she'll probably get her Grand Championship this weekend.

More results as they are available!

Friday, August 13, 2010

Cat-Permeable Barrier

Ginny and Moira have a habit.  A nasty habit.  A habit that, when I really think about it, makes me wretch.  They like to clean the cat box.  Not having opposable thumbs, well, I can't even type it.....  So tonight I finally got my act together and set up a cat-permeable barrier to the room where the cat box resides.

I went to Babies R Us (torture for some of us) and purchased a baby gate.  I brought it home and installed it in the doorway to the laundry room.  Then I cut out a cat-sized opening in the gate.  Five minutes later, Grace wandered into the kitchen and sauntered through the hole in the gate like it had always been there.  The gate is only 2 feet tall so UHM can step over it with just a little effort and now I can be the one to clean the cat box - in a sanitary manner.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Beach Read

We're home from the beach and everyone is getting settled back into "normal" life.  While I was vacationing, I managed to get through one book and I thought I would share it with you all.

I read Merle's Door:Lessons from a Freethinking Dog by Ted Kerasote.  It's the story of Ted Kerasote and his dog, Merle, whom he found wandering the Utah desert as a 10 month old puppy.  Merle lived to the ripe old age of 14 and Ted tells the story of how he took a different approach to training and living with this dog.  The book cites a lot of scientific studies and then refers back to the author's experiences that either prove or disprove the results of the study.

There were things I agreed with and others I didn't.  One of the passages I really liked dealt with the book Active Years for Your Aging Dog by Dr. Bernard S. Hershorn, DVM.  In it he suggests 6 questions that dog owners ask themselves when considering euthanizing a dog.

1)  Is the condition prolonged, recurring or getting worse?
2)  Is the condition no longer responding to therapy?
3)  Is your dog in pain or otherwise physically suffering?
4)  Is it no longer possible to alleviate that pain or suffering?
5)  If your dog should recover, is he likely to be chronically ill, an invalid, or unable to care for himself as a healthy dog?
6)  If your dog recovers, is he likely no longer able to enjoy life, or will he have severe personality changes?

If the answers to all 6 questions are yes, then the dog should be euthanized.  If the answers to questions 3 and 4 are no, then maybe the dog should be allowed to pass naturally.  However, if that is the case then you need to ask yourself 3 more questions.

1)  Can you provide the necessary care?
2)  Will such care so interfere with your own life as to create serious problems with you or your family?
3)  Will the cost involved become unbearably expensive?

Your answers to those questions may mean it is better to let your friend go than prolong his or her life.

As someone with senior dogs and a senior cat, I spend some time thinking about what's going to happen in the years to come. I fervently hope that Sam, Ginny and Grace pass peacefully in their sleep but having this list of questions to ask myself both now and if I find myself needing to make a decision at some point in the future gives me some peace of mind too.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Traveling and Technology

Bright and early tomorrow morning I head to the airport to catch a flight to the beach.  Most of my luggage caught a ride with UHM last week so I just need to bring a carry on with a few things.  One of those things is the little MP3 player I bought last year.

It's tiny - 2" x 1.25" - and holds all the music I like to listen to.  I don't need a device that holds 500,000 songs and a bunch of videos, thank you very much.  My little 2.5 gig do-hickey is just fine!  Tonight I bought a new CD - Zac Brown Band "The Foundation."  I LOVE IT!  I don't think there is a bad song on the disc.  So, I decided it needed to be added to the MP3 player.

Over an hour later, I've managed to load the ZBB CD, unload all the other music that was already on the darned thing, and reload all the music that was already on the darned thing.  Sometimes I really hate technology!

Now, I'm wondering if I should do on-line check in....  With my luck, I'll cancel the entire flight!

No posts until next week!  I will be sans-computer with "my toes in the water, my ass in the sand."

Monday, August 2, 2010

Squeee! Fresh Mulch!

When I got home tonight, the landscapers were just finishing up the day's work.  We are about 1/2 done - more mulch and gravel to go in as well as the picket fence but here's how it looks so far.  I panned the yard from left to right, stopping at the margin where more work needs to be done.  Can I just say that I LOVE the smell of fresh mulch!  Especially if I didn't have to shovel it into place :)

The rocky path that roughly bisects the yard is a dry creek bed to funnel off rain fall.  The dogs are loving jumping over it.  In the last 2 pics, the path is dark because they've put down landscaping fabric.  That area will be filled in with gravel roughly the same color as the creek bed.

I'm guessing we have another 3-4 days of work to go but everything will be put on hold after tomorrow.  We don't want any work being done while we are both out of town.

(Pardon the terrible photos - taken with my phone as the camera is at the beach w/UHM)