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Dedicated to Bart, who had the Most Beautiful Tail

"It's very simple. Dogs and cats and other talented animals have tails; their tails, with their thousands of flourishes, provide them with a wonderfully complex language of arabesques, not only for what they think and feel and suffer, but for every mood and vibration in their feeling tone. We have no tails, and since the more lively among us need some form of expression, we make ourselves paintbrushes and pianos and violins..."

Hermann Hesse

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Ghoulish Welcome!

In 2007 Moe couldn't resist bringing home the Ghoul. It is pretty scary and there are always a few little kids who aren't sure about coming up on the porch when they see it. The pre-teeners all think it is very cool of course! I guess that makes us pre-teeners at heart!

Homemade candy korn! 

Since his birthday is mid-October, Moe always gets something cool for Halloween. This year it was this big, hairy spider. It is about 3 feet in diameter, has purple lights on its legs and the front and rear legs move sideways while the body moves up and down. (Sage hasn't met it yet...that's another story.) Spidee is sure to be a big hit tonight! But for now he's out in the yard entertaining Moe...or vice versa?


Monday, October 25, 2010

Queen of the Water Bowls (RAE2, leg 2)

Starting last Thursday there was a show cluster in Pleasanton, CA. We were entered in Rally on Thursday, Friday and Monday. There was no rally on Saturday and Sunday ended up being a day when it poured rain and was very windy. Was I ever glad we missed that! They had to make an emergency move of the rally ring from outdoors to an inside venue. As Trenton mentioned on his blog, when he was there on Sunday with Cappy in conformation, it was pretty bad!

Interestingly, the Monday show was the Del Valle Kennel Club Show. In 1999 we met Carolyn at this show to pick up our first Cardigan, Kenai. I will always remember that day in great detail. Never did I imagine that I would one day be showing a cardigan relative at that same show! Interesting the turns life takes.

Denali was far more interested in what a pair of schnauzers were doing than in posing for her picture at the end of the show today. As usual, we had the requisite admirers tell me how pretty she is - well yes! (Not that I am at all biased!)

All of the sponsoring clubs were giving portable water bowls as prizes to those who placed. Our RAE entries meant we had the potential to win six water bowls! I hadn't really thought of it that way when I was hoping for a placement.

In the end, we brought home four folding water bowls - at least they were a different color today! Here's the shot of Denali's haul over these few days. Four seems to have been our number this weekend with three 4th place finishes and one second-place finish. Truthfully, after a month off due to her injury, I wasn't expecting placements - or water bowls. I guess we're definitely ready for a road trip now!


Friday, October 22, 2010

Denali does it Again! (Note to Sage)

This morning my newly-crowned RAE Dog took to the Rally Ring again to take her first RAE-2 leg. Today she brought home the red ribbon in EX-B instead of the white one. Not bad for a rusty team that hasn't been training for a month due to her toe injury.

(Side note: We got to see Cappy's dad, Trenton, and Sage's sister, Greta, this morning too! Greta looks a LOT like Sage, in a different colored suit! She's VERY cute! It was cool to see them both and we look forward to the opportunity again in a couple weeks at the Vallejo shows!)

Sage has been training in obedience and informally working on some Rally moves since he was just teeny. He hasn't seen any ring action yet due to his uber-excitability around other dogs. But he's definitely growing up and building confidence in his Advanced obedience class right now. At some point he'll be ready to Rally. 

Just so he knows what to look forward to, I let Sage examine Denali's ribbons from this morning's show.

First the sniff - "'s not fruit!"

"And it doesn't bounce or try to run away."

Awards? Really? 

"Well yea...I can sit, down, call front...Oh, you want it all in a row and I have to pay attention the whole time! Are you sure there's nothing that bounces or rolls in it for me?"

Thursday, October 21, 2010

An RAE for Me!

Check it out...smells good!

Looks pretty too!

Ha...I'm pretty cool, ya know!

Those ribbons are the ones I won today at the rally trial in Pleasanton. I got my 10th leg and my RAE Title!

(Yes, my toe is much better. I'm walking normally and having no trouble with running and jumping - though I've been told to dial that back for now! But Rally doesn't require anything more than I'm doing around the house, so I'm OK to compete!)

So now you'll know me as C-Myste Denali, RAE, CGC

(My little brother Sage is impressed. And it was really cool to do this today because it's Sage's 2nd Birthday - see below for more on that!)

Sage - Year 2 in Pictures (Happy Birthday!)

Happy Birthday Sage - and all members of 
the Oct. 21, 2008 Tree Litter!

Got fruit?
One of the things we learned about Sage during his second year with us was just HOW much he loves fruit! He will take it over anything else - even fresh meat! Accordingly, this year's "cake" will be a fruit plate (photos to come).

Looking at the year in pictures:
Starting with last years birthday celebration and a giant meat cake shared with two of his littermates, Cappy and Fig, and their guests!

Some of the party guests

Sage finally got his coat!

He shares Denali's toy fixation

In fact he shares a lot of things with Denali. 
They've become very strongly bonded.

Enjoying a morning sunbath has become routine.

Still very much the goofy puppy, 
Sage will make a toy out of anything.

Or anyone!

Or any long as it is Moe's!

This is the SWEETEST little boy!

Everyone enjoyed posing for the Valentine's Day shot (NOT!).

Sage is allowed on our bed and one sofa. 
Most mornings he's here, waiting while I take a shower.

Like any good dog, he loves his chew bones. 
I am happy that he likes them more than my furniture now!

Did I say sweet?


in crime? 
("She's never gonna feed us again Denali!" 
"Watch and learn Sage. Just keep staring like this. It always works!")

Goofy puppy!

The best toys bounce and 


Walking on the beach to benefit the 
Multiple Myeloma Foundation.

And just because!

Certainly not a show dog - but so handsome!

Sage as product model as the weather turns warmer.

Paws it Forward - a box for us!

Just what I wanted! (How did Janet know?)

Postal inspector sends his brother, Fig, a box 
and Paws it Forward continues.

It was Sage's idea to make this cup for Fig's mom, Alden. 
It shows a photo of her puppy, Watson, along with his dad, 
Chase, and brother Holmes.

Unfortunately, we also thought it was Sage's idea to eat the other half of this button.

So he got some bread to, the process.
(Never did find the button.)

From the beginning, Sage has been our most oral dog. 
As a puppy he ate everything: our sofa, 
various plastic items, woven baskets, 
and a huge favorite, giant dirt clods.

A common sight, post FRAP.

Everything is a toy!

Yep, Fruit Dog!

One of my many favorite things about Sage, 
his always-happy smiling face. 
Now he's two, but he'll always be our sweet puppy!

(We love you to pieces!)

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Happy Birthday Moe!

Have a Great Birthday!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Denali - Toe Injury - Chapter 3

On Tuesday Denali was supposed to return to the vet to have the bandage on her dislocated toe removed, and an x-ray taken to see if we'd made any progress in relocating it. It was a great plan.

However, being Denali, she managed to remove her bandage (while wearing her E-collar) on Monday at 5:55PM, right after Traci left from a really nice visit with us. Of course she did this because this is the evening when I take Sage to his weekly obedience class. We leave at 6:00PM.

So, instead of putting Sage in the car, suddenly I was frantically driving Denali to the vet, hoping to get in without an appointment before they closed at 6:30PM. We did get in and here's what we found.

Just for comparison we will start with this as a data point:

This is a normal front paw, attached to a fluffy Cardigan Welsh Corgi.

This is the other paw, attached to the same fluffy Cardigan Welsh Corgi. 
Notice any difference in the spacing and orientation of the two middle toes?

How about now? See the difference? Ouch!

OK, how about now...! Ahhhhh!

Unfortunately, it appears that Denali is destined to go through life with one funky-looking foot from now on. No it won't always be pinkish (stain from her licking at the bandage), but her toes will never be the same. Why...?

Not only did she dislocate the toe, but she torn all of the ligaments. There is nothing holding the toe in place and bandaging it really isn't doing anything to help. If we put a pin in it she would have to wear a bandage, and leave it alone for about 12 weeks. That's just not going to happen with Houdini dog.

So the verdict is that we just let it heal as it will. Right now she is walking reasonably well on it. It isn't causing her pain (oddly enough she has never evidenced much pain and never made a sound when we've manipulated it). She favors it slightly when she walks quickly, but she walks at a normal speed, and runs as if there is nothing at all wrong with her.

Because ligaments take twice as long to heal as bone, we're now officially scratched from the next three Rally Trials (all located conveniently near us, so no long drives...sigh) in which we were already entered through the end of October! She might be able to go to the trial on November 7. We will have to review when the time comes.

The projected healing period is 10-12 weeks! That means she will have to be on a leash whenever she goes outside to prevent her from her usual squirrel hunting running and jumping antics. 

In the long run, it will heal, it shouldn't prove to be a problem for her - it will just look funny. But then, she is a Cardigan Welsh Corgi...and they already look a little funny, don't they?