Spring and summer 2018

Spring took a long time coming here in North Idaho, making growing our garden a bit difficult at first.  The starts all had a difficult time as we tried to harden them over.  If you’re interested in our “homesteading” efforts, you can see them on this Facebook page.  The dogs show up there from time to time:
https://www.facebook.com/bkhomestead/

The dogs did fine through the winter, as usual.  The truth is, we probably keep them too warm in their  ‘big dog house’ (they have their own wood-burning stove and two  backup electric heaters that we can deploy if necessary, or if we’re out of town.  Now, just so you know, the word “kennel” has legal and business meaning here in Bonner County, so please note that the word “kennel” here is not meant to describe a business – it’s just the big dog house.  We call their crates their kennels, we  call the building a kennel, and basically anything they’re told to get into, we tell them to “kennel”.   So, Dear Bonner County, please note that!  The kennel is so well insulated, that it maintains the heat very well, and mornings show all  of the dogs coming out to lay on the snow, either because Labs love to lay in snow, or because they need to cool off.  Heating the kennel is necessary for the water pipes.  We try to keep the dogs a comfy 55 degrees, which is the temp they do best at (warmer makes them pant).

We have had he dogs to the river.  Because of various surgeries and company this summer, we were not able to get them for a swim until recently, and boy did they have a ball!!   To see images of the seasons each year, be sure to click on our “images” link at the top.  I’m also adding a direct link here:
http://www.blueknightlabs.com/kennelcam/spring-summer2018/spring-summer2018.html

I REALLY have to get Mariah and Luna’s DNA’s sent in.  I’ll be doing this soon, so that we have them by the fall.

Believe it or not, Dan and I are in winterization mode already.  We’re not getting any younger, and it takes us time to have several cords of wood ready to keep the kennel warm.   We also want the split wood to have time to dry more.  One never knows how hard a winter nature has in store for No. Idaho.  Best to be ahead of the curve.

One Crazy Whelping

A Facebook friend recounted a harrowing adventure in whelping a litter, and it caused me to recount one of mine.

My most/least (you pick) favorite whelping memory started fine. She went in to labor, and delivered one puppy without ceremony, …and then nothing! Secondary inertia seemed likely, as she did nothing for hours. Absolutely nothing. Dan and I drove off our hill in the middle of the night, headed for the E-Vet, with me in the back with my bitch, sure we were headed for a c-section. Half way to the vet, she decided the time was right to start pushing. We pulled the car over, and a nice healthy puppy was born. We turned the car around, and started for home. She started pushing again. As she did, a car zipped past us in the fast lane, zig-zagged into the slow lane ahead of us, lost control and rolled over the embankment. The resulting dust looked like an explosion!

As all of that was was happening, I failed to see it, because I was assisting the puppy from the birth canal.. but of course, I felt the braking, heard the gasps and swearing from Dan. I had that puppy with its placenta still in hand, and I looked up and saw the billow of dirt to our right, as Dan pulled our car over. I now had two wet puppies, one still in my hand, one in my lap in a towel, and one older sibling in the warming box, and my bitch starts pushing yet again. Now, I was an ER Nurse, and should have immediately leaped from the car to rescue the driver, but that accident looked like it had to be a fatal crash, and I had lives counting on me where I was. I yelled at Dan to go see just how wounded the driver was, because if he/she was already dead, I wasn’t leaving my dog! He could do CPR as well as me if necessary. If anyone was alive, I would assist.

Just as I said that (as I was trying to cut the cord on that puppy before the next appeared), a woman runs up the embankment and runs almost into our car. Dan and I both yelled “how many in the car, and do you need an ambulance?” She screamed “just me, don’t call the police” and starts running down the freeway in the center of the slow lane on foot, drunk as can be. We called 911, and a CHP Officer nearly materialized before our eyes. I yelled for Dan to call my neighbor to come get me and leave her car for Dan because he had to give a witness account. I told him “You witnessed this, I didn’t!!! I need to get out of here!” Dan called Leslee. I helped deliver puppy number 4. Momma relaxed. More were coming, but she clearly needed a break from her jet propelled prior three.

Think this story is crazy enough? As Dan is talking to the CHP, who had run after the woman and returned with her, my neighbor’s truck almost screamed past us. She pulled over in a cloud of dust just a ways ahead of us. I swear she opened her door and piled out before the dust settled, and ran toward us in her nightgown, robe, and slippers. She runs almost headlong into the Deputy screaming “WE’RE HAVING PUPPIES!!!” She tossed her keys at Dan, and without so much as an adios, jumps in my car, and drives us home, leaving Dan, her truck, the very confused looking officer and the drunk behind.

Hi-Yo, Silver! Away……..

—-

We lost Leslee some years later to cancer. Gosh I miss her, but remembering this story gave me a great laugh and a wonderful memory of her.

Our Silly Luna

Luna Never fails to make us laugh! She comes in the house and one-by-one removes her favored toys from the toy box. As she removes each one, she will parade it around and show it off, then lie near it, admiring each in turn, before she goes on to the next.  She covets her toys.  If her toy of choice is below another in the box, she’ll move the top one aside, then choke herself to get the lowest one. Some we keep outside, and she has her stash there too. This takes most of the day, and by the end of the day, the den is filled with toys, and a contently sleeping dog!

LEGAL STUFF

Website Built by Blue Knight. All graphics , photographs, and original articles are the property of Blue Knight.  Permission must be obtained for use on other sites or for other purposes.

Another K-9 Road Trip

It’s never easy knowing you’ll be driving for two days with a puppy. It helps to have an older dog along.

We’ve been on the road with Luna and 15 week old Riley since yesterday.

It is hard for a puppy to get the hang of going potty on leash, walking on the leash, and being crated in the vehicle for long periods of time, but this little girl took to it all quite naturally. We let them be together in one crate some of the time for company and comfort, and in separate crates for eating and rest.

In the hotel, they co-inhabited, and we’re the perfect hotel guests. Quiet and using good manners:

If you are traveling with a pet (or two), be sure to follow a few steps, so that hotels that are pet friendly will remain that way!

  1. Pick up after your dog (a plastic bag in your pocket will assure easy waste pickup)
  2. Keep them quiet (no barking, which will disturb other guests)
  3. Keep your pet in a crate when you are out of the room, to prevent damage to floors or furniture.
  4. Never bathe a dog in tubs or showers!
  5. Make sure not to leave evidence of dogs behind (clean up fur or wood shavings that may have escaped your crate).

Traveling with a pet can be fun and rewarding.

 

LEGAL STUFF

Website Built by Blue Knight. All graphics , photographs, and original articles are the property of Blue Knight.  Permission must be obtained for use on other sites or for other purposes.

Dog Show Road Trip-Day7

12 hour drive to Klamath falls, spend the night, then 11 hours or so back to Idaho.  We’re all tired.  The girls (dogs) are being very good.  Mariah and Rumble both asked for a bit of one-on-one cuddle time when we first got in our room.  Now they’re both fast asleep.  FYI, The Shilo inn in Klamath is dog friendly, and very nice.   We stopped about four times for the girls today, to stretch and potty.  The baby is being stubborn about going potty.  I hate it when they hold it too long.

 

Goofy Marian wanting some snuggle time:

Their dorm rooms:

Dog Show Road Trip-Day5&6

3/9/17 –  Dahlia did very well today.  She had more competition, and still pulled out a 1st.  We got a very nice comment from the judge.  Mariah simply did not want to move, and that was sad, since she was doing well free-stacking.  Shine seemed “done” today also.  It’s wet, raining and cold.  The club worked so hard on the specialty, that it’s sad when your show gets so much rain that everything turns to mud.  The winners were lovely.  We’re cold and tired, and did not stay for best of breed, as we just had no energy.   We found a dog park for the girls to get out and stretch their legs.   An early bedtime for all of us seems the thing to do.

Here are a few images from the day:

 


2/20/17  – After we all got a very good night sleep,  we took off for home.  We drove about three hours, and realized we were simply exhausted.  Another storm is headed in, and we decided that fatigue and bad weather is a bad combo.  This evolved into an idea to just lay low one more day at our daughter’s house, and set out tomorrow for our trip home to Idaho.  The girls were very happy to find themselves being let out in our daughter’s back yard, and ran themselves silly.  Tomorrow will be a long day for all of us.  We hope to make it to Klamath Falls, Oregon, then home the next day (which is a 10 hour push if it is good driving).

Dog Show Road Trip-Day4

Last night, the storm named “Lucifer” hit the So. Cal area.  We were lucky that all we got was a downpour of rain, and exciting, and sometimes tragic, news to watch on the TV.

2/18/17. 8:00am

We’re on the show grounds.  The girls are doing great, although none of them wanted to potty in the downpour.

Practice stacking for the baby:

Dahlia and her brother, Chase, went first in their sweepstakes classes.  That was easy for Dahlia, as she was the only one in her sweeps class.   She’s a little nervous, as this is her first time out of the kennel and on leash.  She did well.

A dog we bred (GCH Blue Knight Silent Alarm  “Andy”, owned by J.Jace  went best in Veteran sweeps.  So our morning has gone well.  We have a full day ahead of us!


Mariah.  For  her very first time out, she did well.

 

Rumble was pretty rusty today, but we had fun:

Dahlia went Best Op-Sex Puppy.

“Chase”, bred by us, and owned by Julie and Kim, went 1st in his sweeps class:

Rictor got back in the ring with Joe.  Both of them are a bit rusty.

We had fun today, and the rain stayed away all day, making it a much better experience for all.   The dogs had fun, and now most of them are snoring.

Dog Show Road Trip-Day3

2/17/17  7am -12pm  – last night and this morning,  the dogs were able to stretch their legs and shake off the cobwebs, at the home of our family in Palmdale, CA!   Baby Dalhia is doing great!  She’s such a good girl.  


12 noon, we’re on the road to San Diego again.  The weather is awful.  Travel is very slow.

 

 

Dog Show Road Trip-day2

Up before the sun.  Potty and food for the three dogs.  They’re doing very well, especially the baby!  14 hours to go!   We’re headed into more rain.  Pottying dogs in the rain is way too much fun (I need a sarcasm icon).

Potty stops are the most important parts of a road trip with dogs.  It prevents accidents in the crate, which are lengthy to clean up, thus adding time on your trip, and can result in having to find somewhere to re-bathe the dog and clean out a crate. Urinary tract infections are also a risk of waiting too long between breaks.   So, successful/frequent potty stops are good for owner and dogs.

With that in mind… 10:00 2/16/17:

Rumble knows the drill:

Dahlia notices the grass is greener on the other side of the fence:

Yay, baby Dahlia!!  Potty on command!

Dan and Mariah


1:00

Sometimes, the owners of the dogs have to treat themselves!  Leave the dogs alone in the car?  Nope! Pizza  in the car!

Dog Show Road Trip-Day1

AKA – Xanax. I’ll take two, thank you!.

With luck, we’re leaving in the morning for a dog show.  Last minute issues could prevent us from leaving.  We’ll be driving from Idaho to San Diego, California.  What does it take to show a dog?   Initially training a dog to stack for examination is a good place to start, but our weather has been very bad, and with 4 feet of snow on the ground, there has been little place to train.  So, I am praying.

Entries made for Rumble, Mariah, and Dahlia.  Why them?  Rumble is easy to show.  She could do this dog show thing without me on the other end of the lead, and I love showing her.  Mariah is two now, and it’s time to get out there and see what she can do.  She has never set foot in a show ring before.  And then there is baby Dahlia.  Why her and not her sister?  Well, good question.  I did not want to take two babies, hoping someone could show one for me, and right now, I think Dahlia has the best topline of the two, but Rose has the best head.  I just decided to pick Dahlia.   Three is enough!

What’s involved?

  • Making entries – Fill out the entry form for the girls, with the pertinent information, select the classes they will go in, and pay the entry fee: $200
  • Examine and bathe the dogs.  That was fun… Dahlia had never had a bath or blow-dry.   it was a mildly traumatic event.
  • Pack
    • Three hard crates for travel
    • Three soft crates for ringside
    • exercise pens
    • food for three dogs
    • bowls for three dogs
    • toys for three dogs
    • show leashes and collars/ travel leashes and collars
    • blow dryer
    • brushes
    • show clothes
    • show shoes
    • casual after-show and travel wear
    • canopy
    • chairs
    • towels
    • rain gear and muck boots

This looks a lot like our truck once we’re packed <grin>:
Image result for over packed van

.,and now, today, the day before we leave,  the change filter light came on the truck after dealerships have closed.  We really don’t want to do four days driving with a filter alert.  I wonder if Dan can get it fixed. <sigh>

I will add to this fun-filled trip as we go..


2/15/17 – 11:30am  Day  1

with a ten hour drive ahead of us, the girls are finally packed, and a ton of gear loaded.  There is hardly room for the two of us humans in the car.   Driving conditions here in Idaho are ice, ice and more ice, so we’re slowly sliding out of town!   We hear we’ll be getting 2.5″ of rain in one day at the show grounds.  Dog shows are never cancelled for rain!

———

Potty stop #1  Dalhia has no idea what we want her to do.  It is pouring rain of course!  “Go potty” means nothing to her (yet).  She’ll learn!

6:00pm:

Dahlia finally got the idea on this potty stop!  Success!   ONWARD.  We’re hoping to make it beyond Shasta.

—–

11:30 Klamath Falls, OR.

Done for the day.  A successful end to day 1.  Dahlia’s first experience in a hotel room.  She’s doing well on her first trip!

Lights out!  G’night all…