September 28, 2009

Hardest Worker award

Teiko vom Streicher received the highly-coveted Yooper Work Ethic Certificate this past weekend in Michigan’s Upper Pennisula. Dogs of only the highest working caliber are considered for the prestigious certification. Vom Streicher nailed a perfect score of 100 points by assisting his handlers, Todd Streicher and Jon Alvarez, by spreading over 1,000 lbs of sand in under two hours, a feat never previously matched. International Judge Wedekind announced Teiko Vom Streicher the most “dedicated, focused and handsome German Shepherd Dog” she’s ever had the pleasure to watch in action!

note: We had lots of holes to fill in from the settled earth with the foundation of the future house at beatons. Teiko who loves shovels of any kind was glad to offer his paws to spread the dirt...

September 22, 2009

I was on TV....

My temporary foster, Ezra and my legs are briefly seen on TV. Channel 27 came out to our Band to the Bone fundraiser event last Saturday for German Shepherd Rescue. We had a great day and raised almost $4,000. All the proceeds go to providing medical care to our rescued dogs.
While up at Beatons a few weeks ago, I asked Bonnie if she had any liqueur to top off my evening coffee. Bonnie, being the ever intrepid Yooper, had a box of liquor from a neighbor who had stopped drinking and gave away the liquor cabinet. Not to let anything go to waste, She figured she'd find some use for it so stored it away.

Imagine our surprise to find among the box, a bottle of Courvoisier and Hiram Walker whiskey. Both had numbers and year stamps from 1946.

There was 60 year old whiskey just waiting for us! And let me tell you, the whiskey was beautifully smooth, just like a cognac. What a find! And the best damn Irish Coffee, I've ever had.

Teiko's Mini Me

Our good friends, Al and Susan brought their new puppy, Tonka to town last weekend. Tonka is a three month old Cairn Terrier. And is he just full of himself. The little Napoleon held his own against the great master, Teiko.
Teiko did his usual herding of the puppy around the pool until an unfortunate bunny rabbit entered the territory. Then it was "adios puppy" and a full out chase by Teiko to get the intruder. To everyone's absolute surprise (well, mine...), he actually caught the rabbit.

There was some thrashing of the bushes, but alas, I think and hope the little critter made it out alive. And since Teiko didn't bring me a "present", I'll hold to that thought.

The scary thing. The rabbit was about an inch shorter than Tonka. Good thing Teiko knows the difference....

September 19, 2009

Where has the summer gone?

It feels like I just turned around from planting the garden beds in May and now I'm getting ready to prepare the garden beds for winter. Where the heck did summer go?

I know I spent a lot of time with the foster dogs; Midnight, Gage, Mira and Cujo Cara. I know I spent a bunch of time working in the gardens. I know I spent a few long weekends up at Beatons. I know we've been very busy at work.
I also know that my new camera kinda sucks and my trusty pentax point and shoot took a dump, so hence I haven't been too inspired to shoot photos of which I usually write about here. So over the summer and this morning... I did take some photos with the camera function built in my iphone.

Totally hit or miss with that one....

I wanted to capture at least some of what was happening around me during the summer of 2009. As you can guess, the photos are mostly of the yards, the dogs and a few miscellaneous odd shots.
With high hopes this Spring of a bountiful garden, we got there, pretty much. The herb beds did wonderfully. Raine was harvesting them weekly for her cooking job at the IronWorks Cafe at the Goodman Center. We pulled the basil from the garden last week. Raine made about a gallon of fresh Pesto. If anyone wants some, we've got lots!
A few weeks ago, Todd, harvested the hop vines. We have several gallon bags of hop flowers. It's Todd's hope to start brewing beer again this fall after a 10 year hiatus. There's just so many good breweries in Wisconsin and our friend Paul is a great brew master it was hard to justify the time. But everyone needs a hobby....I need to pick the tomatoes this weekend. Something killed and or damaged the plants a couple of weeks ago, but the tomatoes themselves are just fine. I heard that there was some serious tomato wilt going around. Not sure if it was that or the freezing nights we had three weeks ago.

Am going to buy another camera. I can't stand not have a good point and shoot!

September 2, 2009

Catching up.....

This is probably the longest I've gone without posting to my blog, ever.

Where to start? Nothing earth shattering to report. Just too busy dealing in the real world and a broken camera doesn't help.

I've had my first foster failure. As you might know, I've been fostering German Shepherds since last December. I've met some incredible dogs and have learned so much in both dog and human behavior. I am humbled.My first failure was Cara, my seventh foster dog since December. She came from a really hard background. No family, living in an outdoor kennel for the past few years at a pet "sanctuary" which was busted by officials. In the beginning of August she was transported to me from Kentucky.

And oh boy, did I have my work cut out for me. She needed to relearn that people are good. She needed to learn how to use stairs. She needed to learn she had a name. She needed to learn the word "come". She needed to learn how not jump up on the dining room table at dinnertime.....She needed learn my carpet wasn't her potty space.

 All that I could deal with.

It was the attack on my sweet boy, Teiko, to the point of serious wounds to his legs and face, when I realized, "Holy crap, I'm totally out of my league!"

To make a long story short, I had to keep her for a few more weeks as there was no other place to send her.  That meant we always had to keep her separated from Teiko in different rooms, separate walks, separate potty time, etc.  ALWAYS.

Finally, she was moved to a great home with a professional trainer who could help this girl. And within a few weeks,  she had found her forever home.

The moral of this story:

Even with all of Cara's issues, she really touched me. She needed a friend. And that I could do.

I was able to show her that humans can be kind and good. And she, bless her, believed. I will always remember how she would come up to me, stick her snout between my arm and side and just stand absolutely still and calm, breathing me while I lovingly stroked her.

I'd tell her what a great dog she was. And then she'd look me in the eye and give me a tentative but sweet kiss on the cheek.  I could see the potential in this dog.

I hear you are not suppose to "humanize" your experience with animals. But damn, I think it's the animals who teach us how to be human.

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