August 30, 2013

Oops...she did it again.

Miss Libby just could not stand it.  It has been too long since she's had one of her "accidents".  Here we go again.

Just to recount "Lucky", as she's known in some circles, has had:
-broken jaw at 8 weeks
-broken leg at 9 weeks
-almost had her tongue partially amputated at 11 week
-EMERGENCY spay at 16 months
-qualified for Canadian National with 10 staples in her side as a 2 year old

Libby came off the truck limping on a hind leg today.  First terrifying thought was a torn ACL, but a quick exam by me led me to believe she had broken a toe.  No big deal, right?  Wrong.

I took her to the vet and this is what they saw.

An outside toe on one of her hind feet is fractured in 4 places.  It's smashed.  (The crooked toe to the left of it is no deal-they just moved the toe there for the x-ray).

The vet said they would splint it, consult an ortho vet and we would go from there.

We have NO idea how she did that.  Playing in the yard in the morning?  It happened before she had any field training for the day.

The ortho vet consult result is that they are suggesting amputation of the toe.  It is a non weight bearing toe and apparently she will be no worse for wear after the skin flap heals.  Side effects of not amputating is that her toe may never heal properly, re-fracture easily and have a long, slow and potentially unsuccessful healing process.  Not to mention the arthritis she will get in that toe some day.

I've been given my options.  Amputate or splint and hope for the best.

Apparently Libby won't even know that her toe is gone...but I will know and it's hard for me to fathom.

I need to digest this all over the week-end.  It hasn't really sunk in yet.

August 25, 2013

Gordy on the list!

Miikka's kid Gordy made the US Derby List!  If you remember he's the pup I kept from the Arson x Miikka litter and his "official" name is Elmingos Controlled Power Play.

I raised Gordy up until about 5 months old and then he went to his forever home.  He was a delight to raise and continues to be a delight to be around.  Such personality!!!  He's a spitting image of his dad and his Dad was an awesome specimen.

Gordy has a very bright future ahead of him.  I think he's on 9 Derby finishes in a row and has one left before he ages out.  He's a very bright and consistent young dog that doesn't make many mistakes.

Miss Libby and I made it to the last series of the Open this past week-end at a trial in Montana.  She had run a great trial up until then.  She was the only 3 year old in the last series and it certainly was not a 3 year old test.  I needed to get Momma Darbi off the truck to pull that test off....years of experience and wisdom.

Trust me when I say Momma D would have been very happy if that was the case.  She's been driving me a little bonkers lately with her...ahhh...exuberance.

Libby tried her little heart out, but she got confused.  Very happy with her effort.

August 15, 2013

Sun Goddess

Hattie is growing up.

She's 5 months now.  She loves to sleep like a cat with both her front feet curled underneath her and loves to sit in the sun on the bench seat.

Hattie has been a delight to raise and other than having an affinity for wicker baskets, for some reason, she has been very easy.

I see a lot of Hattie's mother (Meg) and grandmother (Darbi) in her, but she also has some of the Chopper mannerisms through her dad Juice coming through.  I love it.

August 14, 2013

Dock Dog

As you know, I gifted my little Ahti to my nephews after she decided Field Trials were not for her.  

A better home one could not ask for.

Ahti and one of my nephews had a chance to practice at a Dock Dog competition before the competitors started.

Certainly not the world's biggest jump, but great fun was had by all.

August 5, 2013

Go Zink!

Congrats to "Zink" (Elmingo's Little Man - Shaq x Miikka) for placing in TWO Amateurs the past two week-ends.

Zink got a third two week-ends ago and a second this past week-end.

Way to go Zink and Rett!!

August 4, 2013

More puppy raising

One point that I forgot to make a couple of blogs ago when it comes to raising puppies, is about pups and water.

I remember I had a young pup at a Field Trial once and he was only about 9 weeks old.  Someone, who thought they were important, came up to me and asked if I had introduced the pup to the water yet?  I responded that I had not.  They told me I was making a big mistake and I needed to hurry up.  Huh?

Different strokes for different folks, but I doubt this certain pup's ability to get off the point at a trial in October when it is 5 years old has anything to do with how quickly I put him in the water out of the womb or not.

My belief on pups and water is that they will get in when they are ready.  Yes, I don't make a big deal about it.

Everyone is in such a hurry when raising pups.  It is as if some people think they will have a better dog if they can do water retrieves at 3 months vs 5 months vs 7 months.  I know people that put little life jackets on their tiny puppies, put them in the water and then they send me videos of the puppy swimming around with a terrified look on its face.  Yes, your puppy got in the water before my wonderful.

I start taking pups down to the water's edge as soon as I can, depending on the weather.  And when I get there I don't do much.  I don't wade out up to my knees and I don't make a big fuss about it.  I may toss a twig in the water, or invite Miikka with us to show us how it's done, but it's a low stress, high fun  environment.

Some pups swim early and some swim late.  I've never had a problem raising a pup this way and invariably they start swimming around on their own sooner or later.

No pup that I've raised has been "bad" in the water fact they have all been quite good water dogs.  Is this because of how I introduce them to water...maybe, I doubt it...I think what I do is teach them not to HATE the water though.

Dogs are good in the water for a variety of reasons.  Pre-disposition/genetics, early training, never being allowed to cheat (throwing cheating marks before we have the tools to deal with a cheat) and a CLEAR understanding of the water in Basics.

Again, how a pup is raised and how well it's Basics are done will determine a dog's water attitude for the most part.  We can make a great water dog hate the water if are not careful, but we can also make an average water dog good and reliable with thoughtful training.