Winding down …

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Dinky

… for the year and, yet, here we sit, still trying to figure out what happened to March!  The last four months of 2016 were a whirlwind with dog shows in Minnesota, more shows in Colorado, the American Lhasa Apso Club’s National specialty held in Loveland, Colorado the end of October, yet another dog show and then the holidays. Whew!  No wonder I didn’t get my usual holiday preparations and cards done.

Unfortunately, I also received word that two of our fosters passed away in December. Dinky, the little dog that blew kisses and Mae-Mae, our little puppy mill survivor.  That on top of Boo passing away in September.  All had long lives in loving homes and one certainly can’t ask for more than that in the grand scheme.  Still, the loss is felt deeply.

We have a page on Facebook … https://www.facebook.com/LhasaApsoRescueColorado/ … it’s a public page so one does not have to have a Facebook account to access it.  A large variety of content there for the fancier.  Visit, like and get updated postings!

Bringing this post up again … Night Tigers … to remind everyone that raptors pose a real and deadly threat to our little ones.  A cat was taken in a neighboring subdivision a couple weeks ago by a large hawk.  Last night, something woke me up at 2:30 a.m.  Not sure if it was one of the dogs stirring in its crate or the house settling with a creak.  What I heard after that, however, was the hooting of a Great Horned Owl (GHO).  It was either on the roof above our bedroom or in the tree right outside the bedroom.  December/January is mating season for the GHO  with February/March being the hatch … which means they will be looking for easy prey to feed the baby owls.  It is estimated that up to 40% of raptors’ diets are household pets, depending on the area.  Check out this information … Great Horned Owl.  Fair warning!

Night Tigers …

Bet you’re wondering what fits that definition.  And I’ll bet you’ve probably had one (or more) in your area whether suburban or rural.  While you may not be aware of their presence, they are definitely aware of you and what’s wandering around in your yard at dusk, midnight and dawn.

The Night Tiger … also known as  the Great Horned Owl … is common and the second most widely distributed owl in the Americas.  With its six-foot wingspread, it is capable of hunting and carrying off a great variety of animals including porcupines, dogs and cats.  In some areas of the country, dogs and cats are used as a readily convenient food source.owlperched

Hubby found owl pellets in our yard about a month ago … a sobering find as we had two small foster Tzus in residence at the time.  Weighing in eight and nine pounds, they are prime prey for the winged predators in our neighborhood.  Both owls and hawks have been spotted flying low over the yards; last year a hawk family was fledged in a neighbor’s trees.

For more information, please tune into this YouTube video prepared by East Mountain Pet Alert in New Mexico and friend and artist, Katy Widger

Birds of Prey Attack Small Pets

Be safe, be aware!  And keep those small pets under your direct supervision.

 

Sabbatical …

After a year off the blog, it’s time to return.  Suffice it to say that a herniated cervical disc drastically limited after work computer time for most of 2014.  By a stroke of luck, acceptance in an FDA study for an artificial disc and a surgery in September finally stopped the chronic neck pain/arm numbness when nothing else worked.  So, here we are again.

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Daisy n/k/a Piper

Last year was slow for rescue with only one intake, Daisy.  Daisy came from a shelter in Aurora, Colorado via a family who quickly realized their lifestyle didn’t mesh with dog ownership.  Thankfully, they took the time to search out rescue to ensure she would be placed appropriately and find a good home.  A darling little thing at only eight pounds, she made up for her petite size with a big personality.  Daisy was placed with a family in Casper, WY who adopted Kersey from us many years ago.  Promptly named “Piper,” I have it on good authority that she’s spoiled rotten by Jan and Neal.

Christmas brought news of Lucy doing well in Westminster … Bubba n/k/a Max is living the good life … Murphy, our long-legged boy is enjoying life with his family.  Mary reported that we’d lost Kalsang to age … I know with certainty that the best years of his life were spent with Mary.  John, Neil and “the boys” are doing well in their new home in Oregon; Andy, our puppy mill survivor, has positively blossomed in their care.  As a foster home for rescue, their presence is greatly missed here in Colorado!  PippyDo and BellaToo were getting ready for a move to Covington, Louisiana to become real southern belles.  Judy advised that Magoo is doing remarkably well despite his blindness and advanced age.  Katu and Emmy are keeping Trudy amused with their antics.

Best of Opposite Sex
Best of Opposite Sex

On the show front, Teller completed his championship in August and went on to pick up Best of Opposite Sex in the Maturity classes at the American Lhasa Apso Club’s National Specialty in St. Louis this past October.  While there, we visited the Missouri Botanical Garden, the oldest botanic garden west of the Mississippi.  We could have spent the entire week wandering the grounds!  Teller is now retired from the ring, preferring to ride the couch rather than the show circuit.

Rescue is ramping up with an intake here very shortly.  Unfortunately, due to a death in the family and other circumstances, Sammy, our little black Tzu, is coming back into rescue.  And he’s bringing a friend with him … Budha, another little black Tzu!  Ideally, we’d like them to go together but are all too aware of the realities of placing a pair in the same home.  In any event, we’re off and running for 2015.

Spicewood SaltAs if all that wasn’t enough, we recently launched our e-business, SpicewoodSalt.com.  Some of you know the product as “Little Lion Dog Master Salt Blend.”  With a new name, new logo, new packaging, two new products, a website and a Facebook page, we’re officially open for business!  As part of the global community, a portion of our proceeds will be donated to rescue.  Visit the Facebook page and say hello or just browse the website.

 

Of Yard Guards and Bird Dogs …

Spring has arrived here in Colorado … one day it’s almost 70 degrees and then we have a 50 degree drop in temps and snow falling.  Warmer weather brings to mind getting out in the yard, even if only a tease through February, March and April — typically our major snow months.  Like the human residents of the household, the dogs also enjoy spending more time in the yard, especially when the x-pen “snow fencing” comes down and they have run of the entire grassed area.  High on their “to-do list” is grabbing a Frisbee on the way out the door as one can always coax Dad or Mom to throw it for them.  The fact they actually bring it back and drop it at your feet certainly makes it easy to oblige their happy request.

On duty ...
On duty …

Frankers was our first “retriever” and, in later years, got to where snagging the Frisbee and then laying in the grass playing with it was more fun than having to chase it down again.  You want it … you come get it!!!  Summer days were spent checking out his pee mail and generally being lazy.  Unless you were a bird or squirrel.  Varmint visitors and nuisance birds were cause for a race across the yard to chase them from the premises.  Many years ago, he actually injured his sacroiliac joint bouncing up/down at the base of the ash tree in the corner of the yard and/ or chasing them down the fence line (the vet advised that this is an injury very common to the “treeing” breeds).  One of the reasons we put the x-pen fencing up, keeping the dogs confined to the grass areas only.  While he had a decent recovery from the initial injury with the use of anti-inflammatories and acupuncture, the injury would follow him down the years.

He was my first ever male dog.  He arrived as an 8-month old “home school” project.  I was to work on his house manners and then help find him a home.  Ali, however, had other plans.  She had been with us a year and was completely bored with the human company despite our many activities.  The bond forged between the two of them secured his place in our home.  A sweet boy.  A quirky boy.  A little old man even as a young dog.  My velcro dog, he could always be found just steps from wherever I was located.  Second to being near me, his favorite place was the yard … his self-claimed dogdom.

frankali
Tramping in the Tetons …

His passing on March 14th marks a sad milestone.  He was the last of the original “family” … Boogins, Ali and Frankers.  Memories rush in but cannot replace his quiet presence.  My second shadow.  Sleep well little one … you’ve earned your rest.

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Summertime … and the livin’ is easy

Soapbox …

The following post has been making the rounds on Facebook … couldn’t have said it better myself.  And, yes, I own three dogs from responsible breeders.  Dogs who have the qualities and characteristics that make an Apso “an Apso” … something that can’t be said about the dogs coming from the mills or backyard breeders.  And, yes, I know this first hand from my work in rescue, taking in dogs that were produced in the mills and backyards.  There really is a difference …

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“Neither Of My Dogs Killed a Shelter Dog” – Our favorite Facebook status update in awhile [from Showsight magazine].

A big thanks to dog lover (and Facebook friend) Michelle Gonsalves, for this well worded commentary on “purebred dogs creating shelter dogs”. We couldn’t have said it better ourselves. Over the years there’s been a growing number of uninformed voices rallying against the wonderful LOVING world of dog shows and ANY form of dog breeding. We thank Michelle, and any other people brave enough to speak up on the subject!

“Neither Of My Dogs Killed a Shelter Dog”

A Facebook Status update by Michelle Gonsalves – Reprinted by permission.

I am NOT ashamed to be the owner of two responsibly bred dogs.  Neither of my dogs killed a shelter dog.  Neither of my dogs took a shelter dog’s home.  Neither of them added to pet overpopulation.  If I didn’t have them, I just would not have a dog.

Do you know what kills shelter dogs?  Irresponsible owners kill shelter dogs.  They kill them when they don’t do their research and add the wrong dog to the wrong household, then ditch it to die at a shelter when they can’t or don’t care to properly care for it.

Let’s not forget that in many breeds, it was responsible breeders who started their breed’s national rescue club.  Not to save their own dogs (which don’t need saving), but to save the dogs that they never bred.  To save the ones that don’t have safety nets.  Responsible breeders did that.  They did that in IGs [Italian Greyhounds].  I was interviewed more intensely to buy my two responsibly bred dogs than I ever interviewed a rescue candidate.  I had supervised visitation … multiple times.  I don’t even own them outright, they are on co-ownership, so that if anything ever happens to me they will go back to their breeder (yes, even the neutered one).

How do I know this will come to pass>  I’ve seen her do it with another of her dogs when the owner died unexpectedly.  And I saw her do it with my own dog when I nearly died myself.  No questions asked, she opened her home to him for as long as I needed her to … potentially forever, if it came to that.  Because that’s what responsible breeders do.  And trust me, I researched until I found a responsible breeder.

Added to that, I am PROUD of the responsible breeders in this country who work SO hard to preserve our wonderful breed.  Without them, the IG would be an unsound, neurotic, unhealthy creature.  Not the elegant, sweet, healthy blessing that I love so much.  Without responsible breeders, we’d never have gotten the amazing genetic health tests for enamel hypoplasia, the vonWildebrand’s test, the CDA test or the PRA test that are on their way.  Without breeders, the domestic dog would CEASE TO BE!  I do not ever want to live in a world without dogs.  What a terrible place that would be, yet so many professed animal lovers are campaigning through shaming to create just such a world.  Because that’s what it means when you say things like “adopt don’t shop,” “don’t breed while shelter dogs die,” and “people who buy dogs from breeders should be ashamed of themselves.”

What do you think will happen if we sterilize all dogs?  What do you think will happen if all breeders stop breeding?  You’d very quickly lose the rare breeds and the giant breeds FOREVER.  Wait a bit more and you’d lose important genetic diversity, causing untold suffering for dogs that have to come from increasingly small gene pools.  And then, the dog — man’s best friend — would become extinct.  Gone the way of the Dodo.  Gone forever.  So shame on YOU!  Shame on you for hating dogs!

I am not ashamed of my dogs.  I am not ashamed of their breeder, who is an amazing person who has given so much of herself for this and other breeds.  I am not ashamed of my extended family all around the world in the sport of dogs.  And I am not ashamed of myself for daring to want a responsibly bred dog that fits my lifestyle.

Blaming me for the death of shelter dogs is like blaming a parent for the death of orphans in Uganda because she chose to have a baby through pregnancy, rather than adopt one. I have never surrendered an animal in my life.  I have never caused the death of a dog in all my life.  So why don’t you focus your ire on the people who did — the people who dumped those dogs at the shelter.  They are the ones who left those dogs to die.  Not me.  Stop bashing your allies.  Stop the shaming.  We ALL need to work together for the good of dogs.  Because there are scary people out there who want your dog gone.  Who want your cat gone.  Who want the horse out of your paddock, the guide dog out of his harness, the chicken out of the coop and the cow out of the dairy.  Keep shilling their slick propaganda and shaming your fellow animal lovers and you help Animal Rights militants erase your dog from your very own home.

If anyone has a problem with that, feel free to unfriend me.

Musings for the New Year …

Tanqueray & Tonic in hand, I wander back to the computer this snowy, cold day.  Granted not really either when compared to friends in Minnesota or Canada but, certainly cold/snowy enough.  A trip to the computer also serves as an excuse to get away from the football blaring from the TV in the front room.  A sometimes fan, today isn’t the day.   A pan of brownies is cooking in the oven to go along with the pork tenderloin, steamed broccoli and stuffing to be fixed later for dinner.  It’s been a reading-by-the-fireplace and dog weekend … Teller got brushed/bathed/trimmed Saturday; Frankers and Dante were brushed out today in anticipation of a trip to the groomer sometime in the coming week.  Hopefully when it’s warmer as I always feel bad when they have a spiffy new short ‘do and then the temps drop and the snow flies.

The time since my last posting has been hectic, to say the least.  A major surgery the third week of November, trying to keep Teller mat free during my recovery with him having a major coat blow and then getting ready for Christmas was, ummm, interesting.  Hubby informed me the surgery was karma for taking so many fosters in to get spayed … I say it was good karma for warding off some more-than-likely major problems in the future.  The three weeks off work has been dubbed my “spaycation” … hmmph, some vacation!

For the second year in a row, one of our adoptive families (Judy and Magoo) made a Christmas donation to rescue.  The only “condition” was that I write a letter to her great-granddaughter telling her what it meant to rescue and how it was used.  The back story … Judy had inquired of her grandson what the baby could use for Christmas.  He replied that the baby had more than she could possibly use and that if Great-Grandma wanted to do something, make a donation and then explain what that donation meant to the receiving organization.  The letters would be kept and read to the child when she was of an age to understand giving and sharing.  Kudos to these parents for instilling empathy and compassion early on in this child’s life … and thanks to Judy for including rescue in her holiday charity.

Best buds ... Sammy & Budha
Best buds … Sammy & Budha

We also heard over the holidays that Bubba (n/k/a Max) was doing fine and that Sammy’s family (f/k/a Wrigley) added a new Tzu named Budha.  Little red Tess in Golden continues to do well and pretty much rules the roost at that house.

Senghe … adopted in 2007 and n/k/a “Peanut” … continues to do well in his new home even with some major changes.  Here’s what his Mom has to say …

I thought you’d like to see Peanut’s big transformation today!  We had been growing him out and while he looked so adorable with his topknot (I took it out for the before photo for dramatic impression), it was obvious he is much happier with his close puppy cut.  As evidence of that he has been a complete ball of happy energy ever since I picked him up from the groomer this afternoon.  He even gets to wear his sweaters which he absolutely loves – weird, huh?  He will follow you all over the place if you have one of his sweaters in your hand and will hound you (no pun intended) until you put it on him.  He wasn’t able to wear them with his longer hair since they had a tendency to mat him up and he really hated the unmatting process!!  He also wasn’t real fond of the topknot so that was a constant battle.  Oh, well, now he will just look like a puppy all the time!

Senghe n/k/a Peanut
Senghe n/k/a Peanut

We got married this summer … Peanut absolutely loves his new dad and pretty much ignores me when Christopher is home Christopher has been awesome for him too – he is very structured and does not let that little darling get away with anything.  Peanut is his first ever dog so I’m quite surprised at his ability to handle him – I’m sure you remember that Peanut is quite the strong willed little thing.  I think Michelle would be shocked and amazed at the different little man Peanut is now.  He has learned so many new commands of which the most amazing is wait.  He will wait for quite a while even with a treat right in front of him on the floor and he waits for his dinner quietly until you tell him he can go eat.  Another cute thing he has started doing all on his own is to put himself away.  He is way too curious for his own good so he has to go into his kennel when we leave the house.  We used to tell him “kennel” and he would go in and sit down.  Now…all I have to do is grab my purse and he runs to his kennel.  I think the treat he gets when the door closes has a lot to do with it!  It is awful cute though – although sometimes I am just grabbing my purse to get something out of it and then you have to convince him you aren’t going anywhere.

Unfortunately, our little ones age right along with us and I got word that Oscar lost his battle with Cushings.  He was such a nice foster with a sweet, sweet face!  I know he is greatly missed by his family.

On the home front, Teller is being shown on a limited basis … and probably even more limited (read that “not”) until his side coat gets longer :::sigh:::.   Dante sired a litter here in Colorado in August and his two daughters (BeBe and Lily) will hit the ring sometime this spring.  Frankers is, well, Frankers and at 13.5-years old, he’s entitled to his off days.  He’s still pretty spry, all things considered, and we’ve had really good results using Dog Gone Pain (DGP) as recommended by my vet.  Definitely something to consider if you have older dogs with arthritis issues.  And while we’re on the issue of older dogs, studies have shown that it is easier to prevent joint problems than fix them after they develop.  For this reason, I start my dogs on glucosamine/chondroitin once they turn 7-years old.  We’ve had really good luck with Glyco-Flex II, a half caplet every Mon-Wed-Fri.   Don’t be put off by the price … a 90-caplet bottle will last you a year+ on a Mon-Wed-Fri schedule.  And, yes, Frankers gets the Glyco-Flex as well as the DGP.  He injured an SI joint several years ago chasing squirrels and this regimen keeps him both comfortable and mobile.

Wishing everyone the best of the coming year!  May the snows fall lightly on your winter … and may you always find a heartbeat at your feet …

Farewell, old friend …

… hard to believe you’ve graced our lives for double the time of an “average” marriage.  And what a “marriage” we’ve had all these years!!  Typical independent feline … a clown in a cat suit … teacher for the Apsos and foster dogs.  At 16.5-years old, you’ve had a long healthy run and for that we’re grateful.

Dementia and chronic kidney failure now claim these fleeting last hours.  I can see in your face and movements that the day no longer holds any comfort for you.  Sleep well, my beloved companion.  May your journey be swift, your memories bittersweet solace …

Boogins 1997 ~ 2013
Boogins
1997 ~ 2013