Monday, March 23, 2009

Iditarod - YUCK

I am getting sick of emails forwarding news about this race. The latest was about 2 dogs that died most likely having frozen to death during a storm.

I don't care who runs, wins or tries this race. As far as I can see, with 20+ checkpoints to restock, a huge purse for the top runners and all the media it is a race that promotes terrible dog care. Why? Because people are motivated to win, and when people want to win they compromise ethical, compassionate care of dogs.

Too much breeding - where do all those extra puppies go? Where do all the dogs who did not make the cut go? From all the stories some PEOPLE IN ALASKA SHOOT THEIR UNWANTED DOGS AND PUT THE POOR DEAD DOGS ON THE POOP PILES. From all the shelters and rescue groups there are also massive quantities of dumped dogs, especially in spring. There are breeders from Alaska who ship dogs to who-the-hell-cares-anywhere-else-that-pays. They do not take these dogs back when the purchaser decided that it is not working out. Some don't even take the time to really know how their dog will be cared for. So these dogs get passed on and on.
Some breeders, both Alaskan and non, Iditarod running and non, BREED DOGS TO MAKE MONEY. I feel that unless you are putting enough effort into breeding and raising pups to displace a full time job, selling pups to pay for your racing habits is pathetic and evil.

Too many dogs per kennel - do they get the love and attention they deserve? Dogs who work their hearts out for you deserve to be loved every day, to be known for every quirk and special thing about them. Anyone who owns any amount of dogs should go to hell if they do not love and care for their dogs to the utmost of their ability and heart.

Too many compromises
- how do you feed dogs for a healthy full life when all you care about is the the performance over their peak running years? Who of these top runners keeps their old dogs and watches them enjoy comfortable retirement??? And I do not mean a favored few. I mean ALL the dogs who raced and worked. How can they afford to feed the best when there are 80+ dogs in the yard. The feed "the best they can afford" and call it "the best". I would in fact avoid like the PLAGUE any dog food most large kennels feed. Many mushers feed a disgusting raw meat called 4-D meat. That is DEAD, DISABLED, DOWNER AND DISEASED animal meat. How does that make for health???

So...these are my thoughts on this blasted race. With 4 weeks to go till I pop out my baby... I feel like I need to hurry up and scream out my thoughts for someone to hear before I am cocooned in baby love for the foreseeable future.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Jesse is coming back!

Jesse is coming back to Barking Brook to help out during the new baby phase!

I am due April 16 and have been struggling to keep up with what I consider to be basic dog care (what others might consider perfectly great care ... I know...) So we are all rejoicing, since we miss him anyway. Hubby bought him an adorable 26 foot camper for his own space and is working on a spot by the barn. Jesse used to use the upper story of the barn as a workshop, so we are hoping he will enjoy the location. Hopefully we can also provide some great, safe play space for Bud and Sikko too, one the snow melts off our pile of fencing. We still have a good foot out in the fields and yards.

So hurray and hallelujah, the dogs will be perfectly cared for and I can spend some time just enjoying the new baby to come and learning how to house break, um, I mean care for a tiny human baby.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Spring Cleaning ... dogs???

The first day of spring has come and many kennels are clearing out dogs. It always makes me sad, all these dogs that are not good enough, fast enough, eat enough, cute enough, young enough, breedable enough, healthy enough.... and the excuses are staggering.

I just hope and pray all the dogs are lucky enough to go to homes that will love them and cherish them and never let them down again.

And to all those of you who stand by your dogs... through thick and thin, young and old, fast or not, PLEASE keep talking about what you do and why... so not everyone entering this sport thinks that dogs are upgradable equipment.

Sweet Yuki

Here are a few photos of Yuki, from Blossom's first litter last summer.
She has two boys of her own, lucky girl! Zack and Jonah.

As you can see....she looks SO MUCH like her dad Smudgie it is not funny! Down to his fancy parti-eye.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

10 and 11 week photos of Handsome Wolf

Things are good, though I await an adoptive home.
I live inside and get special toys, sleep in a crate at night and am learning important stuff like to go out the dog door to go to the bathroom, walk on a leash, not chew things that are not mine and which couches are for dogs (only 1!!!). I get to go to the kennel during the day and play with my big sister Tart or my mommy Blossom. I like that ok. I really like to be in the house with my uncle Boomer. He is fun to play with and teaches me a lot of stuff.

This is me snuggling with Blanche. She is nice to me and I am of course, polite and nice to her!

This is what it looked like before I knew our photos were taken... I was napping. See how big I am getting??? I've grown a lot since my siblings were adopted out.

I was only about 10 weeks here. I am growing fast.

Here I am in my favorite spot with a special toy. I understand that this used to be my great-grandfather Ranger's special spot. Boy I wish I could have met him.

Next to me is the bucket of big dog bowls. I still eat out of a small dish... someday I will b a big dog though!

Well, that is all for now. You'll have to look for more updates and my cute tiger stripped nose later!
Lots of love,

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Wolf at 9 Weeks playing with Big Sister Tart

Here is Wolf, a handsome fellow with dramatic markings and adorable ears. His coloring is similar to Moon, but his bone structure is different. He is much more angulated and a tad more fine boned. Wolf is very athletic. He is the pup who leads out the farthest on our walks in the woods. He is also the pup who is the most independent, and not until he is tired do you find him at your ankles.
Wolf has told me his real name is River, so I call him that most of the time.

Wolf was the was shyest of all the pups, but has become mush less shy with his siblings gone, it was almost as if he got lost in their chaos. He still is self entertaining - and prefers to chew a toy versus chew on a person. We'll see how that changes now that he is the only puppy left!!! He already has signs that he gives when he needs to be taken out of the house to go to the bathroom.

This first photo is Wolf playing with a toy, his sister Arwen asleep next to him.

Here he is playing with Tart. Tart is a good big sister.

Blossom Puppy Round Up

The pups turned 9 weeks this past weekend and got their first shot at 8 weeks.
They are ready to go!
Over the next few days some of them will be going to their new homes.
People will be asking - which pups are still available. I will be able to post that information by Thursday night.

Some notes to the brave viewer who wants to look at all the photos below:
Wolf: (available) sable and white male. Really coming out of his shell with his siblings gone, less shy and much more cuddly, sensitive, sweet, likes to explore, becoming more responsive and interactive. Very handsome with his slight tiger striping on his nose.

Arwen: (taken) black and white female. Gentle, big boned, sweet. The perfect snugler. Very pretty.
Aragorn: (taken) buff and grey male. Very friendly and bold, inquisitive and responsive. Likes to cuddle and socialize. Dashing good looks.
Buttercup: (taken) ginger/blond and white female. Very sweet, easy going, cuddly, friendly and fluffy. Pretty girl with adorable nose.
Diesel: (taken) sable and cream male. Gentle, quieter, cuddly and fluffy. Extremely handsome.
Moon: (taken) sable and white male. Active, friendly, cuddly, bold. Handsome and also flashy.

Juniper and Stihl in Vermont

Juniper and Stihl live with the Branchofsky's in Vermont.
They are well loved and very content.
Here are some of the cute photos I've gotten over the years they have been there:

Winter Bliss:

Fall Bliss:

Friday, March 6, 2009

"Rev" and "Sherpa" in their new home!

Here are Sherpa (Diesel) and Rev (Moon) in their new home with Jessica, Russ, Eric and Lief (plus older brother Mud Pie and many other good doggies)!

Looks like puppy heaven to me... Snow play, kitchen play, Eric time... happy puppies!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Moon at 9 Weeks

Here is handsome Moon. He has rather dramatic face markings and a lovely rangey build. He is super friendly, and really wants to kiss people. Also chew on them too! His build seems to promise some sturdiness, he has got nice long legs, big paws and a thick muzzle. His two blue eyes are sometimes wide open in wonder, and sometimes are heavy lidded giving him a sultry look!

Diesel at 9 Weeks

Here is beautiful little Diesel pup. Or as Lidia and I have truly named him:
Diesel Cat Weasel the Hedgehog Pup!

He has beautiful and LONG black whiskers. He is a more quiet and gentle pup, but playful and bold all the same. He does tend to retreat under the table when he finally gets a toy he wants to himself. Clever boy! He has an extremely fluffy coat. His caramel face color is fading, revealing more of a dark bar down his nose. So pretty! His dark brown eyes are full of love and mystery.

Buttercip at 9 weeks

Buttercup taking a nap under the chair. She is still the most playful yet easy going of the pups. Her big fluffy coat hides her petite frame. She has the cutest little nose I have ever seen, and such dark and loving brown eyes. Funny little fact about Buttercup, she always seems to be the puppy who either falls in the water bowl in the kitchen or gets rolled in a puddle of puppy pee. Poor wee lass! She will be needing a batch sometimes very soon!

Aragorn 9 Weeks

Here is Aragorn. You can see how dark his face has gotten! He is in a rare moment of napping in these photos, so you cannot see the devilish twinkle in his pretty blue eye and brown eye.

Arwen 9 Weeks

Here is Arwen, crashed out after a great day of play. She is usually the first pup to be sleeping after an hour or so in the kitchen.

8 week puppies...did not catch all pups

Not sure what happened, but I missed photographing a few of the pups.

Diesel, with his extra long dress-up whiskers. He is a gorgeous caramel color and every so fluffy and round! He is a playful fellow with an easy going independent personality. He loves to be loved up, he loves to curl up with a toy and he will play and run and frolic like the rest of the pups.

Arwen, our black (smokey topaz) and white girly. A sweet puppy, friendly and calm. She has a short tight coat, huge long legs and my what big ears!

Arwen with Wolf behind her. Arwen likes to get in baskets and boxes.

Moon with momma Blossom. Moon is a very friendly puppy, puts his paws right on you to get close to your face and let you know how much he really wants you to play with him and love him. He is a bigger boned boy than his twin, Wolf. His face markings, which really are not coming out in the below photo, are very striking.

Another photo centered around Arwen. To her left, but view only, is Buttercup. Behind with the caramel face is Diesel. To her right is handsome Wolf.