Thursday, March 22, 2018

Gus update

Gus had his heart procedure yesterday.  It took 5 hours but was considered a success.  He will probably have to stay on his beta-blocker for his whole life but hopefully no other meds.  He has a recheck in 3 months and then hopefully can be neutered and adopted!  He is recovering with a foster home in Columbia for the time being.  It's closer to the cardiologist if needed and also Frisco doesn't like Gus so it's easier for me. 

Sunday, March 18, 2018


Last week we spent in Vegas. Jerry wanted to see the 311 day concert and it coincided with a CE conference so we killed two birds with one stone. The conference was ok. We got to spend one evening with Kelly, and lots of time exploring the different hotels and casinos. A weeks is a long time to spend in Vegas though. We had fun, but it was nice to be home. 

We stayed in the Luxor-close to conference and concert. 

We had dinner at the Bellagio one night with an inside view of the fountains. 

Some dog statues we found. 

The New York New York was our favorite hotel. It’s like New York meets Vegas meets Hershey!

Shark Reef at the Mandalay Bay

A Nashville writers show

Cool bar lights at our hotel

The conference highlight!


A lot has been going on around here. But I’ll start with this. A certain not so little person turned nine years old and is nearly as tall as me!

Sunday, March 4, 2018

Gus and the broken heart.

As I mentioned before, Gus was surrendered to rescue because he had a significant heart murmur and couldn't be used as a working farm dog.  From the time he arrived he has been exercise intolerant and has episodes of staggering and turning blue.  Friday he visited the cardiologist to get some answers.  The news was not really what we were hoping for. 

 Gus has two congenital defects.  The first is a VSD which is fairly common and is a hole between the left and right halves of the heart.  His defect is small and by itself was not likely to become an issue for him.  The second defect is a double chambered right ventricle.  This means he has a fibrous membrane dividing this chamber of the heart in two.  This causes the pressure to increase in this half chamber, which causes the heart to work harder, which causes the wall to thicken, which further increases the pressure in a vicious cycle.  This increase in pressure also pushes the blood through the VSD and into the opposite side of the heart before it has had a chance to circulate through the lungs and become oxygenated.  This non oxygenated blood is then circulated back through the body causing his symptoms.  

There is a (very expensive) surgery that can correct this by inserting a specialized balloon that breaks down the membrane.  This surgery has the potential to give him a normal life. Although significant complications directly related to surgery are rare there is the risk that the membrane won't be broken down enough to improve his clinical condition and that the membrane may grow back.  Because the condition is so rare there are no meaningful statistics on the likelihood of this.  However, without surgery he will not have a normal quality or length of life.  At this time the rescue has decided to pursue surgery and give Gus a chance at a better life.

He’s looking sad in this picture because he peed in the house.  I’ll be glad when he’s healthy enough to neuter. We probably could now, but have elected not to take the risk. 

Saturday, March 3, 2018

Full Circle

It has been almost a year since the shelter pulled Epic and the other animals from a severe hoarding situation. Today he ran his first 5k race to benefit that same shelter. And despite the hills and my cold we first in my age group. I think he’s very proud. He sure has come a long way in life!

Monday, February 26, 2018

Runs with Dogs

Saturday I did my first 5k of the year.  We did the polar bear run which has been historically dog friendly.  I took Legend with me and we finished in about 28:30 which was good enough for 2nd in my age group, and not bad for a 12 year old dog!  We were about 3 minutes faster last year but I didn’t push either of us.

Today Epic went on a 5.5 mile run with me.  It was a bigger step up than I had planned so we took a walk break in the middle but overall he seemed to do ok.  Plus it was a little warmer today.  He gets to run his first 5K this upcoming weekend.  I think he will be a big help in my half marathon training this spring. 

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Silly things he does

Epic has so much character and creativity. 

He sees absolutely nothing wrong with hanging out on the cat tree. 

He enjoys working reception at the clinic. 

Also likes to work on his core. 

He enjoys some pillows and blankets as well. 

Monday, February 19, 2018

AKC scentwork

This weekend Legend made her debut in AKC scentwork. It’s kind of similar to UKC in the titling structure except you need three legs in an element instead of two. The other big difference between this and UKC or NACSW is the use of buried hides instead of vehicles. For the lower levels they are buried in containers of sand or something similar. We have practiced a little at home and Legend has been getting used to it. 

Overall she had a great weeeknd. She passed all 8 searches and places 1st and 3rd in containers, and 3rd in buried. There were some hide placements that were atypical for what we usually see in UKC and NACSW so that was really good for us. We had fun, enjoyed the chance to spectate and look forward to next time!

In other news, Penny got adopted. This was one of the few times we’ve had a family with kids (age 8 and 11) adopt and it was so much fun to see their excitement and reactions. She’s going to be a very lucky girl!

Thursday, February 15, 2018


Paisley got adopted this weekend and is doing great. But her crate didn’t stay empty for long. This little guy was out of time at a local animal control so I picked him up yesterday. I’m not sure what he’s mixed with but he’s pretty cute. I think he will be a lot of fun. He got neutered today but once he recovers we should know more about him. 

Sunday, February 11, 2018

Whole room makeover.

A few months ago our “cat” room was a hodgepodge of older unmatched furniture, the paint dirty the woodwork a mess, and the dog ribbons in disarray. 

I got the furniture painted and it looks much better. I decided to take the plunge and finish the rest of the room. The walls got new paint in a color that complements the furniture. And all the woodwork got painted, which made a huge difference.  You can see some close up before and after here. 

Then I sorted the ribbons. Cleaned, organized and rehung the ones that were new, special, or unique and tossed the rest. I took down some of the older photos and certificates and added some new ones, as well as a few pics that were in a different room. The black frames I just cleaned. But the brown ones I repainted in gray to look more consistent with the room. I’m really happy with how everything turned out. Still have a lot more rooms to do but this is a good start.