January 31, 2007

How come it wasn't a holiday?

Monday should have been a holiday. We all should have had the day off.

I woke up to the realization that one of the more important events in my dog-show life was passing without the world stopping to acknowledge it. Satinka won her first major!!! (For you non-dog show people, this is a Big Deal.)

I've been whining for months that Satinka was becoming my Reserve Queen. She's won 12 RWB awards...12! If I bought 12 cups of coffee, I'd be working on my second punch card! But, then I looked a little deeper...

She finished winning minor points in July, and went Best of Breed at the Burbank Kennel Club show. In August, she got her first RWB to a major. Since then, she had that big one at the Siberian Husky Club of Greater Chicago, another at Sacramento Valley Kennel Club, and the fourth at the Golden Valley Kennel Club. Not too shabby. She's been in the ribbons more than she's been out...and here I am complaining? Sheesh!

But, anyway, she hit the jackpot last Sunday, at the Orange Empire Dog Club show. Winning the Open class is no guarantee that Winners Bitch is yours (see above results from the Sacramento Valley show )...but it's a good omen. Walking out, to the applause from friends who've been watching me since I first started showing 4 1/2 years ago, who've watched and advised as Satinka and I grew as a team...I tell ya, there's NOTHING like that feeling. Well, at least not yet. I'll let you know how it feels when the picture placard reads "New Champion." 'Cause, baby, we're almost there!

January 09, 2007

These Dogs were made for Workin'

Last weekend Sean had the chance to take some of the crew up to Lancaster to go carting out in the desert with our friend Nicole.

Here's a photo of the four that went up to Nicole's last weekend while Blaze, Satinka, Grandma and I did the show thing. There are 4 dogs in front of them (Nicole's Siberian and her 3mals...dogs who are acually trained...seems a good idea to put them infront, doesn't it?) and three foster Jindo's behind them.

Nicole's never run an 11 dog team before (nor has Sean ever driven one!). They're going out again next Monday (I have to work) and Ryder the Lazy will probably be left home and Satinka and Katie will join the outing. And it looks like they'll be going out most every Sunday until it's too warm to run. I know Sean can't wait for snow to take the sled out....and I'm thinking Ryder and I will make a great ski-jouring team...I don't like to go too fast and he doesn't like to pull too hard.

Since not everyone knows each of our dogs by sight , the little gray girl is Frosty (aka The Littlest Sled Dog and Sean's lead dog in training). The red boy beside her is Max, our Los Angeles Pound Puppy who also runs lead with Frosty, or wheel with Ry or Ice and, happily, has 1/2 a clue about what he's doing in harness. The black boy behind him is Ice, aka Born to Pull who runs wheel (when the run kicks in, the ears stop working). Beside Ice is Ryder "I'd rather be Resting" The Lazy, who despite having no "drive in his head" (thank you Karen for that very accurate description of what Ryder doesn't have) won't let Ice or Max out run him - out pull him, maybe, but not out run him.

Momma brought home more dogs.....

.....and we couldn't find them!

Last night, Momma and Daddy settled down on the sofa and turned on the funny window thing. Imagine how happy we were to find out that Momma and Daddy brought home a whole bunch of new dogs for us to play with!

We couldn't find them though. I checked the boxes beside the window where the noise comes in, up and down the boxes and behind them and couldn't find those dogs. I know better than to paw at that window, 'cause Daddy would get REALLY REALLY mad...so I settled down to watch
the dogs play out the window. But then they started calling us to come play. And there were a LOT of them.

We all started looking for those dogs. Katie was the first to think they might be outside, behind the window and ran out, but she came back inside and said she couldn't see them anywhere in the yard...but we could still hear them. Ice stayed on the love seat to watch them out the window, to make sure they didn't leave before we found them.

Aleska stayed near the sound box by the window, to make sure she could still hear them.

The rest of us kept watch in the back yard, coming in to see if they'd come in the house yet...we could SEE them in the window and HEAR them in the boxes next to the window but we couldn't find those dogs. And they were having FUN.

Ice got pretty excited when he saw them being harnessed up to go for a run and we tried to get in line with them when we saw them running...but we couldn't find them. I finally settled down next to Momma to make sure that when they came in the house, they'd know she was MY Momma. And those dogs got to run a LOT.

Finally the dogs went home, Momma and Daddy closed the window and went to bed....we'll have to be alert for the next visit by these new dogs. I know they want to play with us...but where are they?


Mom's translation helper:
Funny window thing = TV
Boxes where noise comes in = speakers
New dogs = Pretty Sled Dogs DVD from www.huskyproductions.net

January 04, 2007

Pedicure time at Kaos

When you've got 10 dogs, someone always needs their nails done, especially when about 1/2 of them have dewclaws (which may be where the retractable thumbs hide, except that Ry doesn't even have dewclaws and if any of 'em have thumbs, it's him :-)

Anyway...over the years, the dogs have caused me to develop different techniques.

Max, Lacy, Ryder, Aleska and Cheyenne will just lay on the floor and let me trim. They're the ones who most often get their nails trimmed, because it's easy.

Frosty requires that I position her so that she can't see the clippers. Unfortunately for her, she jerks her foot, so she's been quicked more than anyone else...resulting in a reluctance to have her nails done. Also, unfortunately for her, her nails grow freakishly fast, needing trimmed at least once a week.

Satinka requires that I work as quickly as possible, only do her dewclaws (she keeps the rest pretty short) or dremel her on the grooming table with someone else holding food. Very rarely does she need more than an evening up of some edges, and her dew claws.

Ice is my nightmare. The pads of his feet are SO ticklish that if I brush against them, nail time is over. It's HARD to do nails without actually holding the foot, but holding the pastern. Last night, however, he let me roll him on his back in my lap and trim his rear nails (fronts were short enough).

Katie hasn't needed her nails trimmed more than once or twice in 2 1/2years...actually most of them don't, given that their yard is gravel and concrete, but when I do dewclaws on the showing dogs, I'm reminded that I need to do them on the stay at homes too, which results in a pedicure session for everyone.

But the most fun is The Baby. He was sleeping on the kitchen floor and I figured since he was getting a bath on Friday I'd do his dews last night. I clipped the first one while he was lying there and he opened an eye, looked at me and said "can you hurry up, I'm trying to sleep here." I quickly trimmed the 2nd one and let him resume his nap. Yep, I can tell he's going to be a handful.