Well, Inkwell won't be having puppies any time soon but there are puppies to be considered....http://elfaussies.blogspot.com will take you to a page belonging to good friend with some really nice puppies that are about 5 months old now. Sired by a handsome fellow named Ch. Heatherhill's Shock and Awe (Shocka), their dam is Joann Beavers' Holly . There were 'mismarks' (excess white for the show ring) but absolutely no health concerns associated with the pattern of white they exhibit. NICE NICE puppies and ready to go as soon as the right homes come along, companion and/or performance (they are well made and sociable). . Contact info is on the page. Located in St. Michaels MD.
In other puppy news, Debbie Mills, Milwin Kennels, has just had a litter of 10 healthy puppies out of her Blossom (Milwin's Wild Flower) and sired by Ch. Aliyah's Semper Fi of Joywalk. These puppies would be ready to go in mid February, Debbie's contact info is firstname.lastname@example.org . Her website is NOT up to date. These puppies are located near Culpeper VA.
Saturday, December 21, 2013
We have had a couple of small snows this past couple of weeks and naturally the dogs are delirious with joy. So photos are in order, I think!
|Left in the dust|
I also made a trip tot he Jersey shore to a gallery last week and took Satin and Thumper, neither of which had ever experienced salt water. The beach was empty and the temperature was chilly, perfect for the dogs.
|First contact with salt water|
|Satin flies a LOT|
|Winter light is the best|
|Love the converging footprints|
Saturday, November 16, 2013
'Thumper's issue' of the Aussie Times arrives this week, earned as a result of his being #1 in final standings for the ASCA year in conformation competition. It is a bittersweet celebration after a year of highs and lows.
Beware, this is a self-indulgent read, avert your eyes if you aren't a dog person.
Posting this gives me a sense of finality I would so much prefer not to face, but it is what it is.
Dogs can break one's heart. Or more accurately, our hopes and dreams involving them can set us up for heartbreak; the dogs don't do anything except continue to be their wonderful selves, but sometimes what we plan with and for them just doesn't work out.
Thumper is 4 years old now, successful in the ring and in my opinion at least, a really good example of the breed. No dog is perfect and there are things I’d change to make him better, but nonetheless a good dog.
|a week old?|
Month by month he got better. Test by test he came back normal, or negative/negative, or 'good'; in other words, no issues in areas we traditionally do health screening for. Even color testing came back in favorably (Yes! Red factored! No! NOT yellow Factored!).
Temperament to die for sweet, deferential to other males without being fearful, sweet and goofy if maybe a bit distractable); smart and drivey.
|10 months old, in the asca ring|
He went into the show ring with me, showed without any reservation from the get-go, finished quickly with me in both AKC and ASCA rings, out of Bred-by classes. Yes, fat ME handled him and won all his championship points. (*Well my friend Raechelle helped wrap up in ASCA when I had a prior obligation one weekend. Thanks Rae!).
Meanwhile he was looking better all the time. So off he went, at age 2.5, to spend a year showing with one of the most talented handlers in our breed (Maria Neff). I wouldn't have sent him out if I didn't think he was going to do well, but he did better than that, and so onward we went (they went, I sent ) to make #1 in Breed Standings in ASCA for the year. Oh and he was Best of Breed at the Canadian National Specialty in July, as well.
So he came home in June at the end of the ASCA year, back to me, for the next chapter, which was to include training in Competition obedience with occasional forays into the AKC ring (want to get his Silver Grand Championship) and ASCA rings (would love to make top 30 for NEXT year's invitational). Also to include standing to selected bitches. He has had a lot of inquiries (many casual of course but several nice, serious ones as well). I'd always planned to limit him, be selective about crosses, and therefore be able to see how he was producing gradually. I mean he is young, right? Plenty of time. And some wonderful breeders I'd trust with my own dogs planned to bring girls to him.
Except that he 'missed' two bitches in April/May. This, along with an observation by a breeder who judged him in May that raised some questions.
Of to the repro vet we went, to find that he had a very low sperm count and poor motility, +Lymes and a white blood cell load.
He was treated immediately for Lyme of course, and put on a course of antibiotics for the apparent infection that grew out MRSA by semen culture. A sonogram showed all normal structures except for a small lesion in a normal-sized prostate, presumed to be the source of the MRSA.
Subsequent followup in September showed all normal chemistry labs, all normal hormone levels, normal thyroid, no more bacterial growth by culture, and now a normal sonogram. In short, nothing whatever wrong with the dog expect for, now, virtually no sperm production at all.
|Yeah, they're pretty. Dammit...|
At this point his prognosis is very poor for any return of fertility as there is really not a way to reverse autoimmune attacks like this. I haven't completely given up all hope but I am a realist. I don't have to 'do' anything anyway, no real reason to neuter him at this time and we will continue to evaluate him eery few months for the time being. But the damage is most likely done at this point.
A lot of people in the breed already know about this, or have heard talk (almost certainly, LOL) about it, and I have been very open about it from the beginning to the people who needed to know (mainly breeders inquiring about using him in their breeding programs). But because of the interest in him I felt it time to be sure info was offered that is accurate.
|UKC Ch. Milwin Monarch of Dove Creek|
|ASCA Ch. Ninebark Dancers and Dreamers|
|Ninebark The Gypsy Run, working on agility, rally and OB titles.|
|AKC GCH/CKC CH.RBIS Ninebark Cops and Robbers|
|mini-family portrait from a year ago.|
|ASCA Ch. Ninebark Cowboys and Indians|
I hope if anyone has questions, they will ask me. So much more accurate than asking anyone who doesn't own the dog, about it. Really. Ask ME.
Friday, October 4, 2013
It all started with Birds in Art, my annual trip to Wausau WI for the flagship art exhibition put on my the Woodson Art Museum there, showcasing 100 of the best sculptors and flat artists in the world in their juried show. I was included again this year (my 18th in 20 years, I do believe) and an added incentive for attending was the induction of my dear friend Terry Miller as the 2013 Master Artist for Birds in Art. I got to hang the medal around his neck after making a 10 minute introduction to our fellow artists on Friday, Sept 6.
Well, it was SUPPOSED to start with Birds in Art. Due to an unfortunate development regarding Thumper, followed by a generous offer from a fan of his, it actually started with my driving down to Paris KY to leave Thumper for a couple of days of veterinary workup (for an issue not affecting his health specifically but needing workup). Won't say much more until all is said and done. So Paris, overnight, where I got to visit a son of his, 'Lock', and see my hosts' lovely horse operation in Bluegrass Country.
|They also breed Short horns|
|Hoping the fame can be shared.|
Then BACK to Paris Saturday to get my dog, then on westward to the front range of the Rockies. On the way I stopped over at an artist friend's to se her and her marvelous Border collies.
|Joni's 'Asher' with new BFF Thumper.|
It started raining about the time I was arriving in Loveland and it kept it up until the rivers were overflowing, all week long. We wee fortunate; though we never got up to Rocky Mountain Natl Park, there was no house flooding where I stayed and only the inconvenience of a few road blockages. So many in the region fared far worse. We left Loveland for our planned trip up to Yellowstone and Teton as the rivers were really cresting and had quite the detour that day to get far enough south to find an eastward road that could take us out past the cresting sections of the South Platte river so we could head north. That little detour added 3 hours to the 1 hour we'd normally need to get to Cheyenne, WY, from Loveland CO.
|The South Platte River. 2 minutes after we crossed it, the bridge was closed.|
|Dreamer, Deja and Thumper after a little run before entering the park one day.|
In WY the weather was fine, if a bit warm, and predictably the warmth made wildlife sightings scarce. the elk remained in the high country (except around Mammoth where they are permanent lawn ornaments), the moose remained hidden, and even bison were in smallish herds scattered about. We actually saw more wildlife outside the park....
|Grizzly yearling between Dubois, WY, and the eastern park entrance|
|Very habituated raven|
|Female Harlequin Ducks|
|The Lewis River, heavenly|
|The Chief Joseph highway. On he way to Cody, and incredible scenery outside the park.|
|Bison near Tower|
|Female Harlequin ducks|
|National Forest road, perfect for an off-lead dog session|
|A favorite spot in Yellowstone, willow flats.|
But we (or I and my dog) had a date with the ASCA Nationals specialty show in Greeley, so back to CO we came. Most washed-over roads were reopened but washed-OUT roads will be weeks and months to restoration. Fortunately my commute betweenLoveland and Greeley required no detours.
|Quick shot of Invitational judges and ribbon|
|Premier under Jennifer Cannon|
|Zoe, a Thumper daughter.|
|Getting their games on.|
|In the ring|