Friday, April 30, 2010

Our trip to the vet!

You may remember Mum talking about Wiggy and how he had the Big D and was throwing up. Well, just a few days later Gracie came down with the Big D too!

We talked with our new vet, and our local house call vet, and they think Gracie came down with Giardia (it's a nasty little bug that is transmitted via feces and in streams that contain feces from other infected pups). Mum remembered that Gracie had had a nice drink of water the day before from the stream that separates the two big pastures down the ridge. Mum did the usual stuff...fasted her for 12 hours, then started giving her boiled chicken and rice, but it just kept coming, and then started turning red, OMD! Blood in stool, not good. We're beginning to wonder if we need to look into life insurance rates for the Gracie, just kidding, of course!

We got some meds for Gracie, and then just as she as getting well, you won't believe what happened. She got it again?

Mum was working with me and the Grace-ster on some tricks near the fenced in horse pasture, which is up the ridge from the stream. Well, I broke my stay, ooooopss!, and took off for a squirrel down the ridge with Gracie right on my heels.

Mum ran down the ridge, got Gracie in her sights about 300 feet away, called her and she came running for Mum. Mum was proud! Until....Mum was going to put her in a sit, and give her a treat, but Gracie, you see, had that stream on her mind because she was hot and needed to cool off and get a nice big drink of water. She ran full throttle around behind Mum and plopped her belly right into that stream, and started drinking her face off. Sheesh! I would have at least gone for the treat first, silly girl.

So Gracie had to take meds again.

Gracie got well very quickly after the second set of meds, thank DOG, but Mum thought it was time to get us all a good annual checkup, make sure we didn't have any other lurking bugs, get me a chiro adjustment, get us all titers, and an update on our three year rabies shot, she made an appointment with our new holistic vet. That following Wednesday all five of us piled into the Rover and headed to the University of Tennessee in Knoxville for our annual checkups.

We thought it somewhat odd that Mum booked us for a three hour appointment on the recommendation of Dr. Raditic, our new vet. But we did need a good checkup and stuff, and all that takes time.

Just that morning about an hour before we were to leave, Mum went to take a shower and found out we had no water. So Mum got some water from the fridge, and some water from our neighbor, and took a sponge bath. We ended up being late for our appointment, but they were super nice about it.

Mum unloaded the kitties and then came back to the car and got us. Then we finally got to meet our new vet, Dr. Raditic, and she helped carry the kitties, while Mum grabbed us to head for the exam room.

The kitties went first since they get very edgy waiting and are prone to get nasty during the checkup if they have to wait too long. Mum was so proud of both of them, they sat quietly in their crates with the tops off (well, pretty much anyway) while they got checked out. Wiggy is now 11 years old, and Wolfie is 12, so they are getting on in years. But Dr. R said they looked super good, in great health, may need some help with their teeth (which we have a plan for), but they passed with flying colors.

Then it was my turn and Gracie's turn. They drew blood for the titers, which came back great, so we didn't have to get any shots except our three year rabies. Both of us got a chiro adjustment, and we talked at length about our diet, and the kitties diet. Since now we have a source for most of our organic meats and veggies (we're going to be writing about that next week on Raise A Green Dog, we'll be getting back to our raw diet pretty soon.

Dr. R has been feeding her 'crew' raw for a long time and had some great ideas about how we could plan some menus, percentages, and more. We are going to be taking some Omega 3's and some vitamins. Mum is also putting me and Gracie on a different glucosamine supplement, since the last one didn't agree with our tummies. She also said our teeth look spectacular (puffy chest:)!

Since I have been through some major injuries, Dr. R and Mum talked a lot about how to help me. Mum has had a theory for a while now about why I keep getting tight in my iliopsoas after pulling it a couple of years ago.

I don't know if I ever told you, but when I was just about one year old I was attacked by another dog. He took a big chunk out of my backside, so they had to stitch me up from hip to hip in an X pattern. Over the course of healing there was this one spot that, no matter how much Mum rubbed away, the skin layers just wouldn't separate correctly.

She told Dr. R about this and so Dr. R checked me out and yep, just as Mum suspected, Dr. R thinks that's why I pull and get tight in my groin area too. She said it's kind of like if you wrapped a piece of Saran Wrap around my lower back and groin, and then took a portion of the wrap just left of my spine and twisted it - that's what my skin feels like, why I get off kilter all the time, why those muscles back there get tight, and why, sometimes, I'll favor the left side by turning a bit that way.

So Mum and Dr. R talked a long time about how they could both help me stay loose and flexible in that area, since surgery to unfuse the layers wouldn't be an option. Dr. R gave Mum some massage techniques beyond what she had already been doing, and will be giving Mum more as she learns more. Dr. R even gave us a cool chart and made notes on it for Mum.

Have to say the new exercises and massage techniques, in addition to the ones Mum was already doing, are helping a lot.

They also talked about iliopsoas pulls in general since Dr. R has seen them a lot in her practice, and why they happen. It was a great talk and Mum learned a lot. We're just glad that we have a good plan of action.

We got to go to an agility drop in class (more on that later) the following week and Mum worked with me well before and after running with warm up, cool down, and a good massage when we got home. Had no tightness at all from the class.

After the exam, we loaded up in the car and headed home. It was a pretty full day, but Mum was proud of all of us. Even the kitties didn't let out much of a peep during the entire trip! And Wiggy is a known howler from way back!

We sure want to thank Dr. R for everything. We actually had fun going to the vet, what's up with that! Oh and we got to do some tricks for her, that was fun too :)

Hope you all have a super weekend! We're hoping it doesn't rain too much, so we can get some good hiking in.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Lava Lake Lamb, oh my!

Oh, Gracie and I are such lucky pups!!!

Before our big move to Tennessee the nice folks at Lava Lake Lamb sent us some of their pawsome new pet treats!

The Lava Lake Ranch where the treats are made is located just southeast of Sun Valley. That's where they raise over 500 acres of certified organic hay for winter feeding of the lambs.

Being the green dog I am, I love that the folks at Lava Lake Lamb are ranchers and environmentalists, committed to restoring and preserving their land because of its history, its beauty and its biological diversity.

Not only can you get their pawsome treats, but they have organic, free range lamb that would be really healthy for your pup too! We saw they even sell half and full lambs, and can deliver them right to your door!

Raised with care by their experienced shepherds, their lambs are truly "free-range" and are never given antibiotics or hormones. They spend their days grazing right along with their mothers, in one of the most beautiful pieces of land in the country.

Since this is a very large organic working farm, they have lots of BCs, Great Pyrs & Akbash out moving and guarding their herds, and keeping the shepherds company on long nights. As a matter of fact their ranch dogs inspired them to create their new Lava Lake Pet Treats.

The treats are made from 100% grass-fed all-natural or certified organic lamb and all-natural potatoes and vegetables, with no hormones or antibiotics, and no artificial colors, flavors or preservatives to flare up my IBS. We love the texture of the treats, little round slice like treats that stay together, but break apart in small pieces, great for agility and trick training.

They were very kind to send us two bags, one for me and one for Gracie. They kept very well in the fridge after opening. And Mum was super nice to save one of the bags for us to use at our agility practice drop in class last Wednesday, more on that later :)

Thanks again to Lava Lake Lamb for letting us test drive your new treats, we love them!!!

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Around the dog agility blog-o-sphere!

Purina Incredible Dog Challenge

The annual Purina Incredible Dog Challenge got underway April 16th & 17th with the Eastern Regionals in St. Petersburg, Florida.

Here's a nice little overview video of the event.

Winners included:
  • Dee Anna Gamel and Kelsi - Small Dog Agility
  • Debra Willey and Dinah - Large Dog Agility
  • Dee Anna Gamel and Kiz (sheltie) 1st in the 30 weave pole challenge, with Rafael Quinones and Indy (BC) 2nd
See all the winners here!

June 11th & 12th marks the dates for the Western Regional in San Diego, CA as part of the San Diego County Fair at the Del Mar County Fairgrounds. The finals will be held October 1st & 2nd at Purina Farms - outside St. Louis, MO.

See more videos here on YouTube from the St. Pete event!

European Open 2011

The UK Kennel Club announced this week that the UK has been selected to host the 2012 European Open Agility Championships. The event will take place August 2-5 at Kelmarsh Hall, Northamptonshire.


The AKC announced yesterday that they have finalized the site and dates for the 2011 AKC National Agility Championships. They will be held April 1-3, 2011 at the Virginia Horse Center in Lexington, VA. Read more here.

If you'd like to get a peak at the 2010 AKC National Agility Championship winning runs, the AKC has uploaded some of the vids to their YouTube channel. See 'em here.

The AKC World Team Tryouts for the FCI World Agility Championships being held this coming October 1-3 will be held May 8-9 at the Leatherdale Equine Center University of Minnesota Campus in St. Paul, Minnesota.

The AKC will take a team of 12 dogs to the FCI World Agility Championships, to represent the USA at this event. Tryout practice is on Friday, May 7, with the competition held on the 8th and 9th. Judges will be Scott Chamberlain and Mark Sjogren.

Agility Vision will be live streaming the event again this year on May 8 & 9. There are several packages available:

Live + VOD + DVD $44.99
Live Stream only $19.99
DVD only (preorder) $29.99
VOD only $19.99

More info here.

Other stuff

The new book Agility Right from the Start is really getting a lot of buzz. We hear it's great and Mum's even going to order this one! If you'd like to get a little preview, here's a sample chapter.

We heard from Susan Garrett's email newsletter list that she is working on a new ebook, that includes 60 pages of content from Susan Garrett, Susan Salo and Greg Derrrett.

Purchases of the ebook entitle you to a 'ticket' for entry into a chance to win a complete library of DVDs from Garrett, Salo and Derrett. Proceeds of the sales will support the Canadian World Team competing in the IFCS and the FCI World Championships. More info to come, or watch her website for details.


Silvia Trkman is planning seminars in the US end of January, first of February 2011 in Florida, Michigan, Minnesota and, I believe, Virginia. Watch her new website for more info. The rumor mill says the Florida dates are: Jan 24-28, 2011.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Spring has sprung!

Spring has sprung here in Tennessee!

The neat thing is that all of Mum's favorites are all growing here too, including Tulips, Irises, Daffodils, Forsythia, Redbuds, Bradford Pears and lots more. We get to see them on our trips and hikes. Here I am checking out some of the tulips. Nice color!

We also get to see more species too, including lots and lots of Dogwoods. Mum planted a Dogwood in our yard before I was born, but being away from the woods edge it just got too much sun and dry and didn't survive. But they are everywhere here!

Here's a little close up of one of the flowers from one of the Dogwoods we see on our hikes. The bark of the trees have lots of mossy stuff on 'em, looks like they need an acne cleanser, BOL!!!

There is also a Redbud on the property that we are enjoying!

And out on our hikes we see lots of woodland flowers. We couldn't yet identify this one for certain, but think it's a Dwarf Cinquefoil.

Here's a blue one - we think from research this is called a Common Blue Violet. Guess we coulda guessed that one :)

Best we can identify, these are Glade Bluets, and they are everywhere!

The woodland ferns are starting to pop up. Mum remembers these from the woods behind the house she grew up in during her pup years.

We saw these blooms yesterday on a deciduous tree. Don't know if it was a vine running through it that was blooming or they were the blooms of the tree, but they were all over it!

We are having so much fun seeing all the blooming here just like we did at home.

Oh forgot!!!

We spotted this little guy in our backyard a day last week, pecking away at a dead log that's now used as a border where we park our Discovery. We found out that he's a Pileated Woodpecker, and that we were very lucky to see and catch him on camera!

Then a couple of nights later, we were hanging out on the couch, Mum was working on the 'puter, I looked at the window and saw a big (heck, didn't know what it was) guy flying around outside, and started barking my fool head off. First I thought it was a bat...but at closer look we discovered it was a Luna Moth.

None of us had ever seen one. They are big and very beautiful! Here's a photo we found on the Internets!

Very cool! Hope you are enjoying your Spring!!!

Dogs dog Britain's Got Talent!

Last Saturday night the new season of Britain's Got Talent kicked off with some amazing, fun and oh, yes, weird acts. But the best part is that the dogs are taking over!

It's been reported that 10 dogs tried out for the reality series, including a dog that plays football and one that talks. But the reported best dog act is a former Crufts Heelwork to Music and Canine Freestyle winner!

Tina Humphrey and the amazing rescue dog, 10 year old, Chandi, got a standing ovation on the first episode and four 'yeses' to go on to the next round. Here's a clip of their 1st performance.

Wee can't wait to see what else Tina and Chandi have in store for us in further episodes! Maybe we'll see Tina dress up in one of those designer ties, and do a take on their famous dressage routine! Cool!

You may remember that in 2008 Kate and Gin made it all the way to the finals. Can't wait to see how the dog 'acts' fare this year!

Thursday, April 08, 2010

Around the dog agility blog-o-sphere!

The Americas Championship Agility and the Caribbean - A&C 2010 Chili is being held this weekend in Chili. If you'd like to watch live online checkout their online transmission (thanks to below, or here is the direct link to

Live Broadcast by Ustream.TV

Silvia Trkman has updates on running contacts on her website, scroll to bottom of this page for a note from Angie Benaquisto discussing her retraining of running contacts for Dylan (winners of the 16" class at the 2010 AKC National Agility Championships, and lots more.) They have amazing running contacts, good discussion.

In addition, Silvia has a new website here, where you can leave comments and questions for response. Here is a link to the running contacts discussion going on now. She says more on her website will be coming soon...and shares she is working on a training center, where plans are to hold agility, puppy and tricks classes, privates, seminars and camps. Cool!

Also there is a new agility book available at Clean Run , called Agility Right from the Start. We hear this book is fantastic....from authors Eva Bertilsson & Emelie Johnson Vegh who share the training system that made them leading agility teachers throughout Norway and Sweden.

Also check out what's on sale and closeout at Clean Run - we saw lots of our favorite socks from SmartWool, a couple of pairs of shoes from Inov-8, tug & slip leads and more.

Hope you all have a great weekend!

Wednesday, April 07, 2010

Big congrats to the US team selected for the European Open 2010!

Big congratulations to the just announced new US Team for the European Open 2010! The event will be held in Liberec, Czech Republic on July 24 & 25!

  1. Nancy Gyes & Ace
  2. Susan Cochran & Ryder
  3. Channan Fosty & Icon
  4. Silvina Bruera & Maja
  5. Elicia Calhoun & Bree Sea
  6. Linda Mecklenburg & Wonder
  7. Stacy Peardot-Goudy & Maze
  8. Ann Zarr & Skylar
  9. Elicia Calhoun & Nika
  10. Lisa Bowers & Slick
  11. Robert Michalski & Wings
  12. David Skvorak & Dan
  13. Roger Anderson & Sweep
  14. Sarah Dow & Facet
  15. Wendy Pendleton & Cheetah
  16. Kathleen Desvigna & Vivian
  1. Janneke Case & Binkie
  2. Anne Stocum & Breeze
  3. Marcy Mantell & Wave
  4. Nancy Kleinhans & Jimmy Dean
  5. Janneke Case & Roo
  6. Katie Trachte & Miley
  7. Melanie Miller & Smitten
  8. Tracy Sklenar & Export
  9. Suzi Cope & Jib
  10. 1Mary Jo Johnson & Sully
  11. Della Sliker & Jazzmine
  12. Anna Ericsson & Harry
  13. Lisa Jarvis & Reebok
  14. Deborah McBride & Chase
  15. Stacy Bols & Krusher
  16. Lori Borrowman & April
In addition, Agility Vision will be live streaming the event, more info to come!

Monday, April 05, 2010

More hiking and bugs!

The past few days have been super nice weather-wise. In the 80's and sunny, cooler at night.

So of course we've been hiking, again! Yesterday we decided to take a longer hike, about 1.5 hours, but I think we only went about 3 or so miles. Tennessee hill hiking is a lont more strenuous (on Mum anyways) than Indiana flat land hiking.

Mum got us to sit still for a bit for the obligatory pose...

It was just beautiful up on the ridge, especially with my pretty sister in the shot, BOL!!! Ok, Mum made me say that...

We walked on and got to the creek, such a gorgeous site...the photo just doesn't do it justice...

Mum let go of the leash and let me take a quick dip to cool off, felt good on my belly. Gracie wasn't that much interested this time in the creek....she still gets nervous, all these unfamiliar wide open space are still so new for her.

After the creek is was a big climb up the other ridge...

We made our way clear around to the open fields, and saw much more hiking in our future. But Mum thought we may get overheated if we kept on. So we headed back toward the cabin.

Up the final hill toward the cabin, Mum let me drag my leash since we had been there many times now. Little did she know I had a squirrel in my sights and climbed up the big hill after it. But the darn thing climbed a tree, so I just watched Mum climb up the hill via the road and met her on the top side. I kinda scared her, but I was just fine :). She says I'm getting really good at off leash stuff, or at least dragging my leash.

There are different bugs for us to get used to down here. The day we moved in we were warned about the scorpions and how they may show up in our kitchen sink next to the Moen kitchen faucets or in the bathroom sink or shower. Well, this is what Mum woke up to yesterday when she went in to clean the kittie litter box in the bathroom. It was a baby, perched on the wall, so she smooshed it.

Then Mum immediately went online to see what effect a sting would have on her and all four of us. Seems they aren't the same scorpions that live in AZ. Here they are much smaller, and their sting doesn't pack the wallop that ones in AZ would.

The Internets says it will hurt like a 'son of a gun' if she should get stung, but it should go away in about 15 minutes. And on a dog it may swell like a bee sting, so it's good to keep some Benedryl on hand. That is if you aren't allergic, if you are they can be very dangerous. So, we're going to check with our vet this week, to get more opinions, but it seems that it's kind of rare that a kittie or dog will get stung. But we want to be better safe than sorry right?

Then after our evening walk yesterday, Mum found a tick on Gracie, then another one on me. Seems they are a couple of weeks early down here this year, so Mum is going to check with our vet this week on keeping the ticks at bay too.

Down here the ticks are so prevalent that our vet (that's our new extreme holistic vet) during our initial talk recommends we get some Frontline. You know how we feel about those topicals, don't like those yucky chemicals. But ticks can carry some nasty diseases and she says other 'green' ways of combating ticks just don't work down here. But we're going to explore all the options with her this week, and make a decision.

Hope you all had a great holiday weekend!

Friday, April 02, 2010

Great runs from AKC Nationals!

Some super pawsome runs from the AKC National Agility Championships, last weekend. Here are the winners from the regular class. Great running contacts!

Thanks for sharing this Agility Vision! And don't furget there's still a chance to pick up your DVD of the event.

Spring Festival of Dog Agility this weekend!

This weekend clubs in the Mid-Atlantic Region will be holding The Mid-Atlantic Showcase and South Central Texas Hill Country Agility & Bexar Regional Agility Team come together to offer The Hill Country Agility Showcase, both three-day USDAA extravaganzas where competitors in both locations run head-to-head across some 1,500 miles competing for prizes and top honors.

The two events are dubbed the Spring Festival of Dog Agility®.

According to the USDAA website, the showcase tournament will consist of three classes in an individual triathlon event, where points are accumulated from Team & Performance Versatility Standard and Jumping classes and culminating with a third and final Showcase Standard run each for the Championship and Performance finals.

Courses will be identical in both locations and scores combined to determine the winners from the two events. Cash prizes are being offered in both events and an overall award to be determined will be provided to the winner in each program. Titling and other USDAA tournaments will round out the three-day schedule.

Good luck to everyone competing! Safe travels to and from, and we don't want to hear about any motorhome towing, K? BOL!

Both events will be shown on the USDAA website via free live stream. For video go to the USDAA website, log in and click on competitor services and then video services to view the live stream. The livestream begins at Noon ET on April 3, Saturday.

We got a big tour!

Yesterday afternoon we got a big tour of almost the entire property via a little Jeep!

Here I am enjoying the views and the tour in the back of the little truck, secured safely with my Mum of course :) Gracie didn't like the ride as much as I did and got a little stressed, but Mum worked with her and by the time we were done, she was pretty much enjoying the ride.

The best part of the tour was that we got to see all the trails that we can enjoy for our long hikes.

Even with just our two longer hikes that we've done so far, we haven't even scratched the surface of all that's available!

It was in the 80's here yesterday and is going to be in the mid 80's today, cooling down about 10 degrees over the weekend. Mum got out her shorts and I got to lick her white legs, BOL!!!

This weekend, we hope to get in a little more hiking, and a trip to Chattanooga to stock up on food and other supplies. Good thing Mum doesn't have to check her credit report first, BOL!!

We also hope that we can investigate some other dog friendly places when we're there! And Mum may look into supplies to put up our temporary fence. I really miss my fence, can't get my zoomies on!!!

Hope you all have a pawsome weekend.
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