Sunday, October 31, 2010

We Hate Halloween


Only twisted, sick, demented people like this holiday.  

Get a grip.  This is not funny. 

 Only a twisted, sick demented person would do this to their much loved border collie. 

S.T.O.P.  L.A.U.G.H.I.N.G.

Camera Face was at a fun trial all day long and had to use pictures from last year.  It is a good thing, because Ranger said he would pee on her precious camera if she made us dress up like this again. 
Betcha the warranty on that fancy camera doesn't cover dog pee. 

Bonnie is a freak.  She enjoys this crap.  

Camera face giggles and giggles when Bonnie poses with costumes on.  

It must be some sort of illness.  

Really?  I thought dressing your dog up was reserved for Halloween ONLY?  

We cannot escape.  Look at the joy Christmas brings. 


 Again, Bonnie ruins it for all of us....

Why does Bonnie enjoy this so much?   Must be all the treats she wonder she is fat. 

Yes, Halloween sucks.  

It goes against the very essence of a good dog.  

Little monsters and zombies ringing the door bell...and they WON'T let us BARK?  WTF? 

This Tuesday, please vote for an end to Halloween.  

Thank you. 

Friday, October 29, 2010

Photoshoot - Poodles & Raw Diet

Meet Casper! 

And Bo

When this tiny little girl was adopted...her name was Rambo.  It suits her ....uhhhh NOT!  

She is a very loving, & sweet 16 y/o teacup poodle.  

She is a tiny little ball of love.  

Unfortunately Bo is blind. 

Her eyes have grown cloudy over the years, as you can see in this straight out of the camera (SOOC) shot (un-retouched / unprocessed) 

I wanted to give her 'mom' a glimpse of the younger Bo.  So I did some very simple edits (burning) and removed the cloudiness from her eyes.  It is amazing what you can do with a digital image & turn back time.  A few times as I used the 'burning' tool...and watched the grey fade away, her original eye color began to emerge. 

This is her companion Casper.  Casper is much younger than Bo.  

She was busy, busy, busy!  

And ohhhh so tiny! 

Casper's 'mom'  & the vet have been battling a severe skin condition in Casper.  They have tried switching foods, multiple times.  The vet prescribed creams, medications and insisted they feed her a 'science diet' specific for skin allergies.  

Whenever 'mom' would bring up the possibility of a food allergy...the vet said it was not possible,  since they were feeding her the special 'science diet' he prescribed.  The vet kept charging her money to treat the skin issues and at the same time charged her outrageous amounts of money for the special food. 

Below is another SOOC shot of Casper's red inflamed skin.  

Casper's skin is bright red under her short fur.  She has been miserable and her 'mom's heart has been breaking from worry.  

I was able to disguise most of that redness with some texture overlay's, tints and desaturating color. 

Before this photo shoot her mom had started doing research on her own and made a few discoveries about commercially prepared dog food.   She finally threw in the towel and switched both the girls to a completely raw diet two weeks ago.  She wanted total control over what Casper was eating.  
No preservatives, additives, grains...

When I talked to her Mom today...guess what?  

The rash is almost GONE!  

Her energy level has increased & the scratching has stopped!

It is going to be a bit of a challenge for her mom, since Casper is diabetic too.  But she is fully committed to the raw diet now, especially after the changes she has seen in only a couple of weeks.  

Hopefully this bright red, inflamed, painful, burning, weeping, scratchy rash is gone for good....

Instead she will look like this...without the editing.  

She is just toooooo damn cute for anything else.  

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Rollin' Ranger

Remember the television series 'RAWHIDE'? 
The theme song is guaranteed to be stuck in your head for at least a week if not more. 

Every time I see Ranger throw himself on the ground and start wigglin' and rollin' around...
that song comes to mind. 

Please forgive my taking liberties with the lyrics.   I am powerless to resist. 

Rollin' Rollin' Rollin'
Keep a movin' movin' movin
Keep that doggie rollin' 

Dont try to understand 'em
Just watch and laugh and pet 'em

Rollin' on, wigglin' up
Wigglin' up, rollin' out
Rollin' out, wigglin' up

Throw the ball, see him run
See him run, throw the ball
Watch him drop, rollin' in...

He is nuts, yes he is
Yes he is, fully nuts
Certified, yes he is...

Rollin', rollin', rollin  
Rollin', rollin', rollin  
Rollin', rollin', rollin  
Rollin', rollin', rollin 

"Ahhh that felt good!"

"Whaaaaaaaat? "

"Why you lookin' at me like that?"

"Accckkkk!  That tastes funny!"

"Did you throw the ball?"

"Ball ball ball!"

 "I got the ball!  I got the ball! I am so happy I am

rollin' rollin' rollin'...


Do all dogs immediately toss themselves on the ground after catching a ball? 

Or is Ranger just special? 

Ne'er mind...don't answer that.  

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Why I Do This...

We are home from our trek across the state to attend the beautiful Fire Ridge Sheepdog Trial in Milton-Freewater Oregon. What a wonderful weekend! We were honored to stay with our new friends Erica & her very humorous husband Randy at their gorgeous home in Walla Walla. Jaenne stayed there as well & the dogs enjoyed nice long play sessions in their yard.  Friday evening was spent eating the best lasagna I have ever had at Mary Hamilton's house, and Saturday evening more delicious food courtesy of Melinda Eden at a little place in Umapine, OR for the handlers dinner. 

You can read about Jaenne's weekend at the trial on her blog Kip & Mo

Quick Congrats to Dianne Deal for her incredible wins this weekend in nursery, pronovice and open. rock!

Back to our regularly scheduled programming.

The novice/novice course was challenging.  Mary Ann Lindsay swept the field with two lovely runs to a well deserved overall win.   Unfortunately there were only 4 scores out of two complete novice class runs - Mary Ann had two of them.   Our new friend Erica had one with Tate, and I had the other with Brynn.  I had to retire both of Beth's runs, however I was VERY happy with Brynn. She got a 55 the first run despite being handler impaired. The second run was even better - up until her handler screwed her up and the sheep got away from us and she was unable to get them back off the exhaust. I chose to retire to help her rather than struggle with something that was not going to end well. 

Mary Hamilton video taped the runs for me - she cracked me up when she said "That dog saved her ass" on the video. She was right! Brynn did a good job in spite of her idiotic handler. This sport is truly humbling.

Brynn placed second over all, even with one run retired. I asked a friend of mine what it means when you see scores like this. She said it could mean one of several different things, either...

1) Handlers were not ready

2) Dogs were not ready

3) Sheep or course were not what the competitors expected

4) Conditions were too difficult

In Brynn & Beth's case it was #1. Handler was not ready. I am not sure why...we have been working plenty. My confidence level is growing & my dogs were ready. I think, for me, it was a combination of sleep deprivation, low blood sugar and cephaloanaldisproportion (in layman's terms that is "head up ass syndrome").

I need to get over myself.

To be completely honest...I am too damn self conscious about my appearance.  I confess, it is ego.

Not ego about winning or losing.

Not ego about my dogs.

A deep seated embarrassment about my damn weight. I feel like I don't belong. I see all these skinny people and think - what the hell am I doing here? Insecurity is ego.  It is worry about what others think, how they feel, what impression I am making.  It is ego pure and simple...and so easy to allow myself to be sucked into it's self destructive depths.

I need to remember why I do this.  Why am I here?  Remind myself of the postive effects this journey has had on my life.

I am here for my dogs. I am here for me. I am here to learn, to improve myself, my dogs and my life. I am here to grow as a person. To have fun, overcome challenges; make friends.

And for once in my life...not quit something I love, because I don't feel like I belong, or can't be perfect.

I need to focus on what I love & why I am doing it.  Not my waist line, immense derriere or what people think of my frizzy horrible white hair.

I am here for that amazing feeling I have when everything comes together. When you experience that symbiotic relationship between yourself, your dog & the sheep.   A truly intoxicating, enchanting feeling that cannot be duplicated - a space in your head where you let go of the ego, the self conscious thoughts, self destruction and simply slip into a world of  teamwork and purpose.

Why am I really here?

I am here for my idea of Nirvana -  Where I can find perfection in the moment, where nothing else outside the teamwork between myself and my dog exists.  It doesn't have to be peaceful, it can be hard as a pimple on a boar's ass...but as long as we face it together...then it is perfect.