Friday, January 28, 2011

8.2 miles, still balmy

An enthusiastic six dog team took to an eight mile run like sled dogs to running :) Rob was the driver and the happy team included Zeus and Eos, Buffy and Ruthie, Herman and Kiddo.

Matilda and Sherpa had a day off.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011


From frigid to balmy, today we ran two six dog teams. It was almost too warm. Tomorrow we hope to run to Michigan earlier in the morning. Trails are nice. I took the machine to the bridge to check it out, all looks good.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Nice Snow, Good Run, Deer Collision

Photos: Buffy, Matilda, lead; Kiddo, swing (would also have been Rosie if she
hadn't bitten Yuki); Yuki, Herman , wheel. Herman was so excited he hit Jim
in the nose with his head. Dogs and driver all did well.

We had a great running morning , the photos speak for themselves. Didn't get all dogs out that we had hoped to run, but we'll be back at it on Thursday.

After our runs we went for more straw... we're at 42 bales now... we found some good bales with no foxtails, thank goodness. Enroute a deer ran into the back of our truck... a small dent and some lost paint... the deer ran off as quickly as she hit us.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Toughest Week

Josefina, June, 2003 - January, 2011 Josie didn't want to run in harness but enjoyed leading teams on the trail, ahead of them. Shy with strangers, she had a special niche as a companion dog. She was very fast and had just beaten her sister , Ruthie, in a run for fun two days before she became ill.

We've said good bye to both Quattro and Josie this week, with much sadness. Both the world's sweetest dogs, we don't yet know the cause of Josie's sudden illness, great pain and suffering.

Josie's pen family included Ruthie and Buddy, all three pictured here... Josie, left, Ruthie, center, Buddy foreground.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Dear Dogs

Photos: Quattro, incredibly strong and beautiful wheel dog/best friend.
February 2, 2002- January 12, 2010

Dear Dogs,

We are so sorry that some of you have become ill, some seriously. We especially don't like to report about dogs who have crossed the Rainbow Bridge, but yesterday it was Quattro, age nine, beautiful Quattro, off to meet her mother, Liller, on the other side. Her heart impairment was significant... she couldn't move and stay standing without falling over. She was a great wheel dog, a great racer, (Jackpine 30 and sprints), a great friend (and a great fence jumper). We miss her a lot already. Her father is Skinny, who is fully blind but holding on with spirit. To all of our dogs, we love you! Stay well now!!

Late yesterday we noticed that Josie was ill. (another Liller/Skinny pup). We took her to the doctor, brought her home, and returned her there this a.m. at 6:30. She was in a lot of pain. She had exploratory surgery and was found to have some issues with several internal organs, no diagnosis as yet. She is spending the night in the hospital and we'll know more tomorrow.
In the meantime we are looking for causes, especially for Josie's illness. All of our practices are under scrutiny, as always. We try to give the best food, best bedding, best fluids, best love and exercise, but something is going amiss. We'll keep watching.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Where is the snow?

Some of the dogs have been wearing coats, especially the older ones and the ones with health problems. The past few days have warmed (and softened) the trails, once again. They look out from their pens saying 'let's go!', and, of course we wait for good tra

Saturday, January 8, 2011

With the Territory

With retiring sled dogs comes the time when they are failing. Our house tonight has five dogs
resting . Skinny, age 14.5 is newly blind, so we are learning to guide him, after his years of guiding us as a gee haw command leader. Sierra, age 14.5 is very arthritic and still wants to keep us on schedule for everything... she struggles to stand up or sit down, but once going she is in command. Buddy, age 12.5 has his mouth issues, teeth, tongue, but he does his kennel herding/guardian job well. He loves sleeping inside, but loves guarding Ruthie and Josie by day , outside. Eos, is in with another problem, this time an under the tongue infection, the third dog to have it. She 's pretty much ready to go back out after days on antibiotics, but it's going to
be in the minus teens tonight so we're keeping her in.

The sad one to tell is about Quattro. Today she was diagnosed with a tumor in her heart. She's already fought mammary cancer, but this one is hard to fight, you can't remove it and there's very little medication that would be helpful. We just settled her in the house and she seems to be very grateful for it. She's always been an outside sled dog (racer), but her tongue and gums were gray this morning, so I don't want to risk leaving her out in the cold tonight. She's settling right in, and sorry to say, she is wobbly. We will be able to keep a close eye on her tonight.

My bed is in the middle of four of them so I will be right there with them, as always, tonight.
It would be hard for me to even come close to being as good to them as they have been to us.

Sleep well, old dogs, good friends.
Photo: Quattro is in left wheel in this photo (right side on picture). Leaders are
Buffy and Ruthie. Swing are Medio (deceased) and Matilda. Team, Kiddo, Sherpa. Wheel, Herman and Quattro.

Copper Basin 300

We're watching Aliy Zirkle , Allen Moore and Bridgett Watkins in the CB 300 this weekend
(and, of course, all of their great dogs!) . There is a GPS capability at :
Allen drew Bib 50 out of 51 but he'll pull forward fast.