Mar 102019
 

Alice & Tristan!
by Doranna

AliceCH Luvbug Copper Rose More Than Feeling RN CGC

Alice joined us almost three years ago–already a champion with two litters under her belt, and ready to have her own pack.  She’s a shy, giggly, soft girl by nature, which means training her is a gentle dance.  I gave her lots of time to understand that the training game is a game and she ultimately earned her novice rally title with high scores and placements.

That single rally title (after her CGC, ie Canine Good Citizen) was all we intended for her to earn, although now she hip checks the boys out of training space to take over, so you never know.  Still, her primary job here is to be just what she is by nature–a sweet loving girl who fills the Pack Princess hole in our household.  And did it pretty much from the moment she arrived.

 

TristanCH MACH Albedo’s Song Of Self VCD2 BN RE TDX MXB MJB XF T2B BCAT CGC

Tristan has had some life interruptus, between an ultimately unnecessary obstruction surgery* and some illness/injury on my part, each of which encompassed one of our active seasons.**   Oh, the agility trials we’ve had to cancel!  Wahhh!

*(Long story)
** (Some areas, handlers can trial every weekend without driving too far.  Ours is not one of them. Our opportunities are highly seasonal.)

Nonetheless, at four years old he’s going gangbusters on the Fun Front. He’s crazy to DO things, and to learn, and to be with his people.  He had his VCD2 while he was still 2yo, and is at this point well toward his second MACH as he trains for utility (this is slow going, due to aforementioned human illness) and works toward his VST/tracking championship.  He has plenty of time left for both of those endeavors, human health willing, so I’m not pushing it.

His motto is “Do all the things, all the time, and do them with quivering excitement!”

Tristan also qualified for AKC Nationals even before Dart did. Since Nationals is one (heroic) day of driving away this year and the chance of having two dogs qualified again on a year when it’s that close and I can manage health and work concerns is in the realm of infinitesimal, we’ve decided to take the hermit (me) out of her hidey hole and go for it.  A trip of a lifetime sort of thing for us for which our goal is to enjoy the camaraderie, the dogs, and the bigness of it all.

This, as it happens, occurs soon!  But the story installments are already scheduled and will go on, and surely that’s the most important thing…

Mar 032019
 

by Doranna

As we know, Bob, it’s been a while since I was blogging with any regularity.  Long enough, in fact, that Things Canine have undergone quite a few changes.

Tristan, for instance, was less than six months old when I last blogged.  Now he’s a young man with significant titles on both ends, about to head to AKC Agility Nationals!  So here’s a part 1 re-introduction: Continue reading »

Mar 252015
 

Tristan Beagle continues to grow up faster than I can even type about him.

tb.teeth.469See? Teething!  And between the day I took this pic and am writing this blog, those missing front teeth have largely grown in!

He has a lot of fun stuff in his life, along with the ongoing ball of activity we dryly call the PuppyCat Unit.  He visits my dad at the hospice residence, goes to Connery and Dart’s obedience drill for a few moments of play and socialization, heads to our version of a National Forest to play with scent on our tracking practice grounds, and loves the daily games also known as training.

(Many of those games are simply building body awareness, but he also has an early understanding of sit, down, stay, heel, show stacking, bringing me an object, taking an object from hand, come, go to kennel, stay in kennel until released, wait at door to come in, leave it alone, let it go, and I’m probably forgetting something because these are all just things we DO.)

Most recently, he attended a puppy party. Continue reading »

Feb 172015
 
Even I have to admit this is a pretty good Face of Innocence.

Even I have to admit this is a pretty good Face of Innocence.

Ohh, it seems so easy to see wherein lies the FAIL.

The dog is trained.  The dog is proofed. The dog is in a familiar environment.

So he should know better.

And thus Dart Beagle recently went to obedience drill and wouldn’t. 

He flopped around when asked to sit for the stay exercises.  He got up.  He got up.  He got up. Continue reading »

Jan 202015
 

by Doranna

“Oh, I know!” I told myself, all full of excited optimism, “I’ll blog about Baby Tristan’s learning process!”

tb.profile.297As usual, I didn’t take into account the fact that I’d be so caught up in the process itself that the blogging would take second place.  Or third.  Or fourth, because the other boys are still active, too!  And oh wait, that dastardly Real Life.  Oops!  Well, here I am.

Tristan’s been with us three weeks now, making him eleven weeks old (on the 18th, when I’m first typing this).  His nose has finished unfolding, taking him from baby-face to youngster-face.  His hind end has more leg than he knows what to do with, his feet are huge, and his shoulders are trying to decide just how they’ll sit on his body.  He’s still got baby belly, though! Continue reading »

Jan 122015
 

By Doranna

tris.howl.0052Sometimes choice isn’t choice no matter how hard you try.  Sometimes, it’s all you can do to get close.

Sometimes it’s all about the brick wall.

Last time out with the blog, I’d just spent weeks researching and making choices about and preparing for the best way to vaccinate young Tristan Beagle.  Then I called my vet’s office and had a conversation with the front desk.  This was weeks prior to the actual appointment, so there’d be time to sort out any issues.

In this conversation I defined the vaccine I was looking for (ad naseum), made the desk staff person repeat it back to me (ad nauseum).  Then I had her check with the office manager as to whether the vaccine was on hand or would need to be acquired specially, although they’d had it on hand a couple years earlier when Connery got it for [reasons].  Not making any assumptions, me! Continue reading »

Jan 052015
 

by Doranna

I have an uneasy relationship with vaccines.

On the one hand, I have far too much experience with vaccine-damaged animals.

Far. Too. Freakin’. MUCH.

On the other hand, I strongly believe in the protection that vaccines provide.  And I strongly believe that eschewing them as a matter of fact will create a less safe world.

All the same, I feel that we need to be smart about these choices for our individual circumstances, and not pressured one way or the other by either fear-mongering or authoritative nonsense.

I especially feel this way as I prepare to take nine-week-old Tristan Beagle for his first shots! Continue reading »

Dec 282014
 

by Doranna

Waiting is the hardest part.

Choosing is the second hardest part.

But I’ve been really, really lucky.  I’ve had that opportunity to choose.  That’s a whole ‘nother blog and one I’ve got half written, but for now, just trust me.  It is an honor and a rarity to have a choice—never mind first choice—in a show-bred litter.

Connery's Choosing Day

Connery’s Choosing Day

Continue reading »

Dec 232014
 
Connery's first baby picture--about three weeks old!

Connery’s first baby picture–about three weeks old!

Puppy breath.  Slightly sour, slightly tangy, a hint of skunky.  No kind of smell that a person would normally crave.

At least, not until there’s a puppy in your hands and you suddenly realize how much you’ve missed that very thing.

I’ve always timed my puppies carefully, according to the age and need of the current pack.  I stay aware of who’s breeding the sort of dog I like, occasionally reaching out here and there with the intent to wait if there’s something perfect to wait for.  (I waited two years for Connery, for instance…)

I most recently started serious puppy-planning about five years ago, but things got…complicated.  And a little bit Fate-ish. Continue reading »