Monday, August 29, 2005


"Rambunctious, rumbustious, delinquent dogs become angelic when sitting."
Dr. Ian Dunbar

Scotia Nivienne of Hibou

Our 8 year old Maine Coon doing what she does best.

Do you mind? I'm trying to sleep here...

Friday, August 26, 2005

Covenant Run to the Battle

Run to the Battle
by Steve Camp

Some people want to live
Within the sound of chapel bells
But I want to run a mission
A yard from the gates of Hell
And with everyone you meet
I'll take them the gospel and share it well
And look around you as you hesitate
For another soul just fell
Let's run to the battle
Run to the battle

Do you have your armor on
We're in the middle of a raging war
We've been training for so long
Have we learned to use His sword?
We may not be ready
But we serve a mighty Lord
And He's made us more than conquerors
So what are you waiting for?
Let's run to the battle
We got to run, run to the battle

He has trampled down the enemy
And has given us the victory
When we pray we learn to see
That His army
We are marching on our knees

There'll be times when we grow weak
Let's keep our faith alive
Let your faces shine with glory
For He's helped us to survive
And in that final hour
When you feel like you're ready to die
Will you hear the trumpet sound
Will you hear the warrior cry
Run to the battle
We got to run, run to the battle

Steve Camp
© 1981 Word Music (a div. of Word, Inc.)(ASCAP)

Thursday, August 25, 2005

Epilepsy - Humble pie

I know the previous epilepsy log was a bit dramatic, but it's also realistic and honest. It was inspired by some breeders on a Belgian Shepherd list after a woman's 2 year old dog started having seizures. This is a dog she was hoping to start her kennel with, it was her dream. The woman was freaked out, understandably so, and asked for help.

It's funny how some breeders started chiming in and getting defensive. You start to notice the same names over and over again. Guilt maybe? Something to hide? I know who NOT to get a Belgian from, not that I'd ever get another one. The words "an epi dog can live a happy, normal life" are repeated over and over again as if that makes everything OK.

Advice like "Let the dogs be happy members of your family, eat this huge piece of humble pie that the breeder has given you and take the dogs out for a nice looooooooong walk" is given. Anger is discouraged. Silence is encouraged. Certain people... breeders.... comment on how "the subject is getting old, let's move on." (Those are direct quotes, believe it or not.) I was appalled by what I was reading.

Guess what? The woman apologized. She had nothing to apologize for, and it was wrong that she felt the need to in the first place! Her breeder was not honest with her from the start, turns out the dam has seizures along with other dogs in her litter. This was before she was bred.

The woman has neutered her dream and is eating her humble pie in silence. She hasn't mentioned epilepsy or seizures since.

I never did join in on that conversation, the log below was created but not sent. The reason I posted it yesterday was because my friend's Giant Schnauzer has just started clustering. She's now going through everything that we went through, and my heart goes out to her.

Yes, I realize that breeding isn't easy. When you put two dogs together you never know what you will get. That's life, you deal with it and move on. What I don't find acceptable is the lack of honesty. To find out about yet another Giant who died before the age of three from uncontrollable seizures, and then to have a 'respectable' breeder tell you to keep silent, they don't want people to know?! I'm sorry, that's wrong. To see breeders continuing to breed the same lines because they are winning in the show ring, then sell the puppies to unsuspecting owners for large amounts of money? In who's world is that OK?

My questions are these:
Why should the pet people be the ones eating humble pie that is served to them unknowingly?
Why aren't the breeders eating what they serve?

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Bullet - 11 weeks

Winn-Dixie smile:

A baby Bullet in action:

I'll only sit still for a split second, better shoot me quick:

What else can I get into?

Epilepsy - It's no big deal, right?

Canine epilepsy effects everyone differently, and when people tell you it isn't that bad I tend to disagree. I cried many times, and it WAS a big deal to me. Nobody can tell me otherwise. And I don't consider myself a sappy, over-emotional person. But I also realize that not all canine seizure experiences are like Coda's, and unless you've experienced it you can never truly understand. Each person’s experience is different. Here’s mine.

So what's the big deal, anyway?

It's a big deal because it can get expensive for the bloodwork, tests, medication, vet visits, neurologist visits, emergency vet visits, valium drips, overnight observations, more bloodwork.

It's a big deal when you lose sleep. You lose days of work. Your emotions get drained, you get physically and mentally exhausted.

It's a big deal when you watch your dog collapse in front of you, froth at the mouth, scream, knash its teeth and pee while slamming into the floor, and there is absolutely nothing you can do for them. Afterwards you balance keeping the dog from hurting himself while pacing with keeping the dog from unintentionally biting you. Then you have to give an ataxic dog a bath because he's peed on himself again and his furnishings stink. Yes, you learn to deal with it and adjust, but that doesn't make it better.

It's a big deal when every time there's a bang you notice. Your dog has an innocent neck scratch and you run and see if it's a seizure.

It's a big deal when you come home to a wet beard, pee and the smell of expressed anal glands and you know he had one when you weren't there. When you do leave the house, you wonder if he'll be OK in the crate. You wonder if you should leave or maybe stay in that night.

It's a big deal when people tell you it was vaccinations, or what you fed that caused this... or what you should do to make it all better. Logically you know you did nothing, but inside you wonder if you DID cause it? You second guess everything. You play it over and over again in your head.

It's a big deal when you feel you need to get video footage of a seizure before you tell the breeder because you are afraid he won’t believe you... Then you have him tell you that it isn’t a big deal.

It's a big deal when someone tells you that maybe your dog was just dreaming. (It's also disturbing to read on a list that when a dog dreams and moves its eyes or legs it's probably having a seizure... there is a HUGE difference between a seizure and REM dreaming)

It's a big deal to read a post about a dog with odd, disturbingly recognizable behaviors... you know what's coming next but you can only wait and pray it won’t be the case for them.

It's a big deal when you need to develop a way of carrying 80lbs of ataxic dead weight up and down stairs all by yourself using a wide collar, a towel around the dogs stomach while propping their body against yours.

It’s a big deal when your dog doesn’t recognize you, when it stares at you with hard, glowing eyes and starts to growl. You wonder what you can use for protection if he comes after you, and wait for him to snap out of it.

It's a big deal when you lie there listening to your dog whine all night long, waiting for the next seizure, wondering if they'll make it through this cluster, wondering if you'll be rushing to the emergency clinic in the middle of the night.

It's a big deal when you hug your best friend for the last time before he's put down in your arms.

Monday, August 22, 2005

My Bullet

Introducing Bullet, once known as Big Red.

Sire: Jasso v. Hatzbachtal
Dam: Leika v. Hatzbachtal

Born June 7, 2005
2 males, 5 females

Breeders Gregg & Soo Barrow
Covenant Kennel

11 days old:

4 weeks old:

10 weeks old:

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Changed my mind... getting a pug instead!

Yeah right, just kidding. This is the newest member of a co-workers family, her name is Bella: