Saturday, July 23, 2011

Calling Jenny Craig

So back in April, I decided I should downsize some of my terriers. Tessa went to a home in Edmonton. The lady (I use that term loosely) never paid, first it was she lost her job, then her boyfriend and her were moving to a new place and couldn't take her. Then she could take her, but she needed time to pay. I, being very understanding, said she could pay in installments. My patience wore very thin when she emailed from Utah on a holiday. How could she pay for a holiday if she couldn't pay for a dog. Long story short, I got her back....but I am very disappointed.

Tessa jumped out of the car, remembering me, but I can barely recognize her.

I told her she was like a 450 pound man - morbidly obese. Everyone knows the shape of my terriers, and fat is not in their vocabulary or on their body. I told her I fed her 1 cup once a day, she fed her twice a day. Tessa will NOT say no to food.
Guess it is a weight loss program now. When you see me at the next trial, she will be the terrier bringing up the rear. Or the one stuck in a hole, and I do mean literally.

Friday, July 22, 2011

As The Wool Turns

Well it has been a couple of weeks now, but it almost seems like yesterday that we were at the Stampede for the World Stockdog Championship.

The woolly girls were all ready to give the handlers the run of their lives.
This was Creed's first year in the competition, and thought I would throw him in. If truth be told, the position would have been for Fly, but I don't think you are allowed to bring a megaphone in the competition so your deaf dog can hear.

Gin was one of the first ones to run, and one of the first pens.

The time was 2:28, good enough for 6th on that first run. Competition was stiff.

There were the likes of Randy Dye and Tuck (which happens to be Creed's half brother). Tuck thought he was still in the setout mode - thinking he had to grab them to make them move.

Jimmy Walker was down with his two dogs, Angie and Mitch. As an aside, both of Jimmy's dogs were in the Triple Crown Event - taking in arena trials and the Wild Rose Classic field trial. Jimmy, like myself, believe that these dogs can do it all and be competitive in all. Jimmy proved it last year when his Mitch won the Triple Crown and $1500. It was to be seen who would be the 2011 winner.

Most of the pictures taken during the Stampede was done by 8 year old nephew Joey, who took this picture of Kristi Oikawa and Rex. He may have a career in the making.

My twin sister Holly was down as well.

Chris was able to remove himself from the ponderosa down in Mankota and run Jill and June. He had a pretty fair first run with Jill, but forgot to take his valium for his second run.Then there was the Ewe Box. Christine Jobe (my new best friend), found us a cozy spot, with refreshments to watch the evening's performance. Then there was the performance in the Ewe Box itself.

I've got friends in low places, and even in the bathrooms.

The night is sort of a blur, I think there was something bad in the refreshments we had available.

There is many pictures to prove that it must have been a good time.

I do remember my designated driver (Joey) drank my coke and rye by mistake(?). We gave him a stiff coffee after and he was able to drive Chris and myself home.

We did see other things besides the dog trial - cattle penning, heavy horse hitch, men flying through the air by a big cannon, and this chick with the worst sense of fashion ever. Some may remember her - it appeared she had sat in a vat of bleach, and ate the backside of her pants out and only thing showing were her bright pink panties. (Sorry boys, I didn't take a picture of that sight!)

When the two runs were done, the lucky people and their dogs going forward included Louanne Twa with Meg and Isla, Dale Montgomery with Ben and Zip, Valerie Kerik and Win, Diana Gauthier and Skor and Kip, Dave Claypool and Glen, Chris Jobe and Fly, Jimmy Walker and Mitch, Lee Lumb and Chica, Lisa Wright and Hope, Milton Scott and Bud and myself and Gin.

One of the happy winners that night was Jill Brodie - winning the Sponsors Choice trailer.

Now we will see a yellow truck pulling this baby around!

This year they made us do a grand entrance - all that was missing was the smoke!

Smithbilt hats were the sponsors this year - all of us receiving new hats (now I have two new hats!)

Milton Scott should have the award for most times getting into the finals....I think he is happy he got a new hat and not a new jacket.

Louanne seemed to be calm-or perhaps she was praying to the sheep gods.

The sheep were wily, and difficult to pen.

Many of us had good times to the pen, and may have won it if we could have got the darn things in!

Denae Frew and Bram did their best, as did the rest of us.

Diana Gauthier was one of the first to pen, and be on the leader board.

When the dust settled, Dave Claypool and Glen was Reserve....

......and Dale Montgomery and Ben was the Champion.

The other winner that night was Gin for the Triple Crown Event (and Creed won the Nursery portion of the Triple Crown) - it came down to the wire between Jimmy Walker's Mitch and Gin. Another successful year was accomplished...running dogs, running around and running up a tab. The Calgary Stampede has become our mini holiday every year, meeting old friends and having a great time.

Can't wait until next year!!!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Prelude to As The Wool Turns

Soon the shenanigans from the greatest outdoor show on earth (or rather the greatest fun had in the ewe box) will be here. However, before that reporting is done, I must do ramblings from the vet world. I have been working in a small clinic the past few days as the owner went on a well deserved holiday. We as vets wait for that one case that we know will come every year. Mydriasis. Yes, sounds like a foreign disease doesn't it? Only thing foreign about it was the client who owned the patient. Maggots, yes, maggots. Little rice particles moving as fast as they can to the depths of dead tissue (anyone for Chinese food tonight?) A clip job done, and a little salt poured on the 16 year old dog, and he felt as good as new....gone is that tingling sensation.
Being a general practitioner, you see and do many things. Yesterday was a retained placenta in a mare (always a favorite - love those foals), a few spays, a few vaccinations, cows with sore eyes, horses that have wounds, cats that have hairballs...these are a few of my favorite things (you can break into song at anytime now).
Sometimes it isn't always glory...this morning was a sad morning...two (different owners) old horses had to be put down. The old grey mare, she ain't what she used to be. The owner surprised me, being very matter of fact about things. She said that was one of the better euthanasias done (which leads one to ask, what is an unsatisfactory outcome..the animal living?) However, the other euthanasia was much more emotional for all involved. Fred was over 30 years old, and his joints just couldn't do it any longer. His pasture mate - a 27 year- old Thoroughbred, couldn't understand why her friend was being led away, frantically calling him and racing up and down the fence line as several other horses munched on their hay. Fred passed away peacefully, and we let his surviving friend into the pasture. I truly believe animals have feelings, and it was proven this morning as that old gal came up and sniffed Fred, and then stood by his side quietly, ignoring the lush grass all around. And the humans cried.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

These Boots Were Made For Walking.... the Wildrose Classic. This was a first trial hosted by Don Grant and his family, and it was going to be the one in history for the muddiest. It started with a great bang after a hail storm on the night prior to the trial - of which I was not in attendance...thank God. But, the storm allowed us all to show off our fashionable footwear.

The ever popular Muckboots were everywhere.

They come in all colors as well. In this family, it helps prevent people from mixing up each others boots.
For those people wanting hide from the others, they brought out their camo-boots.

Of course, there were the old standbys...I remember when I was 6 my first pair of boots were this kind. Shiny black and red ones.

They now come in different colors now, tan...

.....and green soles.

The red ones outnumbered the rest.

Then there were the ones that were quite more fashionable. Reminds me of That 70's Show. I feel like a brownie.Expect a cover spread in next month's Vogue...or perhaps Working Border Collie.

I promise I will shave my legs for the photo shoot Bruce Fogt.

Being the first trial in Alberta this year, it was time to reminisce with old friends.

The sun did come out momentarily throughout the weekend.

Being the social butterfly I am, it was hard to spread my time evenly between all friends.

The ghost ewe showed her presence fleetingly during the trial. Perhaps she will be found next year.

When it got too cold outside, Jaimie VanRyn and I kept warm, and hydrated in the warmth of Dora (the Explorer).

I ensured that my drink was the healthiest possible. The nectar of the fruit flowed freely.

Jaimie and I rocked to the tunes of Sugarland. I also showed her my prowess in drumming. A skill I never knew I had.

Of course, we couldn't go home that night (due to the mud of course, please tell that to my mother). Chris Jobe graciously put us up in her trailer. Chris got up 5 am to graze the sheep, and at 5:10 I heard her trying to get her truck out...the purr of the diesel led me back to sleep. At 5:55 I awoke the the sound of the diesel again, albeit a lot quieter. I thought to myself, "Did Chris get stuck again?" Then I realized that growling of the motor was actually Sleeping Beauty (aka Jamie VanRyn) in the bed beside me.

The next day was a warmer day. Fly did her runs from the sidelines.

Many of us went up and helped set out. By the second day all glitches were worked out, and the sets were brought out quickly.

Don and Randy discussed how well the trial was going, and how much fun it will be to do the next year.

Looking west from the setout, I am sure Don was not looking forward in pulling everyone out of the field.

I ran Floss, Creed and Gin on the weekend. Floss did not do spectacular - forgetting her flanks, cutting her flanks, and not doing her flanks. Back to the drawing board with her. Creed did quite well. Of course I can say this, since I did not get any pictures of him.

Gin did her best, and got 3rd overall (behind this Scott Glen fellow and his dogs). However, Gin did beat Don (yes, whipped his sorry ass) on the second day. (Sorry Scott, I get to say this so rarely, I have to announce it to the world. I will expect an ass whipping at the next trial. The ass of course being me!)

After the trial we all packed up, I packed up my new dog (well really it is old...his name is Dan, and in a year's time he will be the spitting image of Gin...and with his attitude I also will be spitting up blood from the ulcer he will cause me.)

Don Grant had to pull each and everyone of us out. We didn't get home until 12 am....time enough for a quick 4 hour sleep so we could pack up again to head to Calgary to the Stampede.

Red Bull, the reason trial people are in the vertical position. I may sell them next year the first morning of Stampede. I could make a killing.

Stay tuned for the ongoing saga of .....As The Wool Turns.