Thursday, May 29, 2014

Memorial Day Weekend

It is hard to believe that we began the month of May with temps   in the 30's and are ending it in the 90's!  We made a quick transition from winter to summer!   The puppies and I had a wonderful Memorial Day weekend at a friend's lake cabin south of Duluth.  We have so many wonderful memories of Princess, Dee Dee and Elvis swimming in the Great Lakes, so I was eager to teach Scarlett and Zak to swim.   I held Scarlett's collar for about five seconds and she took right off!   Zak was more tentative.  He desperately wanted to get the stick but couldn't muster the courage to get his nose wet.  My friend tossed him in once at the end of the dock and he paddled to shore; a look of abject terror on his face.   He didn't let her get near him again!  He loved the water though, and I have no doubt he'll be swimming by the end of the summer.
Scarlett learns to swim!

 Zak has been limping on and off  the past few weeks so I took  him for an Xray on Wednesday.   I expected to learn he had a bad sprain or maybe had sustained a hairline fracture when he jumped off the bed a while back.   Unfortunately, the news was much worse than either of those things.   Zak has a  condition known as premature growth plate closure, which occurs  most often in short-legged breeds.  I am waiting on a second opinion, but we are  almost certainly facing at least  one surgery; quite possibly  more.   It was a devastating  blow and has turned my summer  upside down.  The timing is  especially bad, as we had looked  forward to some summer fun, after a long, cold winter.   The hardest part will be keeping Zak quiet.  His favorite 'toy' is a chipboard mailing tube and I have accumulated quite a stash, thanks to a co-worker who works part-time at WalMart.  I'm hopeful that they will keep him happy and entertained in his post-operative recovery.


Thursday, May 15, 2014

Yunker Farm Dog Park

Spring has been slow to come this year as is so often the case in this part of the world.  But we have gradually been warming up, and the mud at the dog parks has been drying up.   We enjoyed about a week at the Midtown Dam park (the closest, and our favorite) in April before the rains came and flooded it.   Since then, we've been going to the Yunker Farm Dog Park which would probably be our favorite, if it weren't so far away.    We have met some great people - and canines, too! - at both parks.   One night recently, we met a great young couple, Jake & Jade, and their two dogs, Eleanor and Rigby.   It turns out that Jake is a talented photographer, and he took these great shots of my puppies.

Photos by Jake Blotter Photography

Zak and Scarlett are extremely friendly and sociable with other dogs, no matter what size, breed or temperament.   We usually go to the 'big dog' side because corgis are really 'big dogs with short legs'.  They do seem to gravitate towards other dogs in the 'herding' family ... Australian shepherds, border collies, shelties, blue heelers.   Scarlett can keep up with the big dogs very well and often is the the first to get the ball or stick or whatever toy has been thrown.     Zak enjoys playing with the other dogs too, but he enjoys the people even more.   He is particularly drawn to men, and one night recently had a great time playing with a young boy (10-12 years old) who had long legs and let Zak chase him for a solid 30 minutes.  I don't know who had more fun!   I enjoy the dog park because I know when we get home, the puppies will be tuckered out, I'll have the rest of the evening to myself and we'll all sleep well.