Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Pup and Pidoodle

There is an unbelievable amount of stuff you can by for a new puppy.  I've been out pricing dog kennels.  And my oh my, all the other puppy paraphenalia I have come across.  There are mega varieties of puppy food... 
And food bowls...
And chew toys...
And balls...
And doggy shampoos...
And more chew toys...
And still more chew toys...
And even clothing!!!
So far, the only purchase I've actually made was a dog kennel that I bought on the internet.  But, I think it's the wrong size,  and the door latches are way too tricky.  Unfortunately, the free shipping only applied to the outward bound shipping, and not the return. 
I haven't yet bought the fluffy pink liner, but I just may have to!

Monday, March 28, 2011


I guess it doesn't matter if you're the expectant mother of a baby or puppies, the nesting instinct eventually kicks in. 

I have been cleaning, cleaning, cleaning.   I've been doing the kind of cleaning in the past week that is so not typical for me.  I've removed furniture from the rooms so that I could really clean our hardwoods.  We could, if we felt so inclined, eat off our our floors right now.  I've dusted every little nook and cranny of our house. I've planted new flowers in the pots.  My husband even got a little nesty and did some power washing on the outside of our house!
So clean we can eat off of it!
Or, if you'd rather eat in the hallway, it's super clean too!

Here's my newly straightened up studio!
Power-washed sidewalks and freshly potted plants!
I used to vacuum nearly every day, just very quickly, because being Siberian Huskies, Zoe and Scout shed ridiculous amounts of hair year around!  Now, whenever I find a little furball they left behind, I feel such a longing for them.  Who would've ever thought I'd miss picking up all that hair?

But now that the house is spic and span, I think we're ready for those new little puppies!  And I'm pretty sure we won't be able to eat of the floors this time next week.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Creepy Guy on the Playground

Lately, I've visited my nearby dog park.  A lot.
At first, I went just because I was missing Zoe and Scout so much and I needed a dog fix.  I'd sit on the bench and just watch.  Occasionally a sweet dog would run over to me and give me a little much needed kiss.  Other times, a dog being chased by another would run under my bench as an escape. But mainly, I just sat on my bench and watched...

If I had been on a children's playground, some people might have been suspicious of me.  I came alone.  Without any dogs of my own.  And I just stared at all the dogs playing.  Sometimes I even got my camera out and took a few pictures of some of the ones I thought were especially cute.

Then I started thinking about what kind of dogs we might want next.  

One day, while I was on a run near the park, I saw the most beautiful Australian Shepherd.  I had already started really honing in on that breed after several weeks of visiting the park.  On that lucky day,  I went inside the park and found that dog's owner.  She told me all about her 11 month old dog, Jasper, while he sat at her feet.  She also told me a lot about how she raised him, which explains why he's growing up to be such a great dog. 
The very handsome Jasper.
I got the name of the breeder Jasper came from--  a breeder that doesn't have a website.  So if I hadn't have met Jasper, and his sweet owner, Ashley, I wouldn't have met my puppies.

All of my days of creeping paid off!

Friday, March 25, 2011

Litter Mates

I got an email from a perhaps well intentioned man today that warned me NOT to buy the littermates I had posted on my blog- or any littermates for that matter.  My gut reaction was simple.  To ignore his warning.

Because, after all, I've had my own experience with littermates.  Of course it wasn't easy.  There was at least twice as much craziness as having just one puppy.  But there was at least twice as much love too.  I think my girls lived to be 15 partly because their deep friendship and love for one another kept them healthy.

When I found them so many years ago, there was no Google.  If someone had given me a similar warning then, I wouldn't have Googled it.  But it's 2011.  And by now, it's instinctive.  So I went against my gut, and went to my computer instead of ignoring the advice.

I Googled "raising littermates".  And just like when I've researched medical conditions and other things I know better than to research, I got scared.  Over and over I read how trying to raise two puppies at once is a great big mistake.  If raised together, the puppies will never bond with the humans in their family.  And the dogs will turn aggressive.  Blah, blah, blah.

But then I took a deep breath.

We've done this before.  My girls didn't have an aggressive bone in their sweet little bodies.  And we all certainly bonded, as I have never bonded with pets ever before in my life.

I'm going into this with my eyes wide open.  I'll do everything I know how to do to make both of my new puppies grow up to be the best dogs they can be.  Fermin and I will make sure they know we're the pack leaders.  They'll get their one on one time, but also their time together.  There's plenty of love, time and patience to go around.

So please, no more unsolicited advice telling me I'm making a big mistake.  We've got this one-- I mean these two!!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

How Could I Resist?

I mean, c'mon!!!
Well, the streak I referred to in my previous post continues.  I bought the first puppies I went out to see!  But I thoroughly researched the breed, met a girl with a great dog who then directed me to her breeder, and I just know I picked the perfect dogs for us!

I went out to meet them today.  There were nearly 20 puppies to choose from- 2 big litters arrived within 4 days of each other.  And they just became available to look at.  So I got lucky, and got first dibs. 

They aren't actually littermates, but 1/2 brother and sister.  Same daddy, different mommies.

They're a little young to leave the pack, but I get to bring them to their new home next week.
I am in love already...

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

The Streak

It started when I was about 6 years old.  We already had a couple of sweet family dogs.  I knew Mom and Dad wouldn't let me have a third.  But I wanted a pet that I could call "mine".  Because I guess, some 6 year olds are like that.

So I asked for a kitten.  I begged.  I implied to my parents that I had thought long and hard about it and I knew I really wanted a white fluffy kitten with blue eyes- oh, and I wanted a girl kitty.  Somehow, I got them to go along with my plan.  We went and looked at a litter of kittens.  None of them white, or fluffy, or with blue eyes.  But I begged and I pleaded for one particular kitten there that was black, short haired, and green eyes.  Oh, and he was a boy kitty.  Somehow, I also convinced my parents to go along with this decision.
A few years later, when we had lost our dogs and it was time to find some knew ones, I told my parents that for my birthday, I really really wanted a Lhaso Apso.  A white one!  The first litter we went to see didn't have any white ones.  So I came home with a dark tan one with black markings.  She was the "runt" of the litter, and looked completely different than all the rest.  Once she grew into adulthood, it was clear she wasn't actually a Lhaso at all.  Which also explains why she was the "runt".

Then, fast forwarding about 15 years, Fermin and I went out looking for our first family dog.  We were interested in looking at Siberian Huskies and Golden Retrievers.  We were going to look at several litters of each and then find someone to love.  We never made it to any Golden Retriever litters, because, as my usual practice, we bought the first puppy we saw.  A Husky!

My streak.  Bringing home the first pet I look at.  It's hard to resist any puppy or kitty. 

And you might say, "Well, hey!  You found sweet pets, it all worked out, so stick with that streak, Kerri!"  But let me tell you, the kitty became a disaster of a cat.  He was mean, mean, mean!  He would sit in a pounce position on top of the dog house and wait for me to come outside.  He would then jump on me.  And not in a loving way at all.  I ran inside the house many days crying with bloodied arms.

The fake Lhaso also grew up to be a mean adult.  She would lay underneath my bed and growl and show her teeth as I tried to get out of the bed.  I had to make a flying leap to get out of my bed to avoid her bites. 

But the 3rd time was a charm.  I found my first Husky, and have been in love with the breed ever since.  And that first sweet Husky, Chloe, led me to Zoe and Scout.

Today I'm off to look at a litter of Australian Shepherds.  Thankfully, they're not yet old enough to be available.  I'm just looking.  I'm taking a friend with me for support.  There will be no snap decisions.  Lord, give me strength!!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

A Dog's Purpose

Not only have a been reading informational books about dogs, and perusing the internet for shelters and breeders, but I've even been reading some memoirs and fiction books about dogs.  

A while back, I read and loved the book, The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein.  Sometimes, when I'm looking for a new book to read, I'll go to Amazon and put in the title of a book I already know and love, and I'll take the suggestions they give where it says,  "Customers who bought this item also bought..."  That's how I found A Dog's Purpose by W. Bruce Cameron.
Like The Art of Racing in the Rain, A Dog's Purpose uses a dog as the narrator.  Actually, one dog soul, in several dog bodies.  This dog is reincarnated about 5 times during the course of the story.  And during his second life that we read about, he lives his happiest life with a sweet boy.  The dog's lives following that one are really all about him finding his way back to the boy.  And not to spoil anything here, but well, eventually he does. 
It's a beautiful book that I can almost guarantee if you're a dog lover,  you're going to thank me for recommendeding it to you.  Have your Kleenex handy tho, because there are some moments in the book that you're going to need them!

I especially loved reading this book right now.  Reincarnation seems to make sense to me, and of course, I love the idea of it.  I like to think my girls will find their way back to me someday.  Hopefully sooner rather than later.  Who knows, maybe they've stepped into some new little puppy bodies already and they're just waiting for me to find them!

Saturday, March 19, 2011

The End of the Line

We had the best Siberian Huskies in the world for the past 15 years.  I think if I were to try find new dogs of the same breed, I would be constantly comparing them to Zoe and Scout.  And really, how could they ever measure up?

I do worry that in years to come, any time I see a person with a Husky, I'm going to ask to pet their dog, and then be unable to resist blubbering about the two we used to get to spend our days with.  Will it make me sad, and just make me yearn for them all over again?

Those girls broke the mold.  They were perfect.  I don't want to try to find replacements.  I think it's best for us all that we let Zoe and Scout be the end of the line as far as Huskies go.

So that is why...the search is ON.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Welcome to Puppy Tracks!

For the past 15 years, my husband and I were the lucky owners of Zoe and Scout.  We lost our sweet companions February 21, 2011.  They had long and happy lives together, but still the time didn't seem long enough for us.

As any dog lover knows, losing a dog is losing a member of your chosen family.  It's heartbreaking.

The house is a quiet now that I don't like.  And so, the search begins, for our new puppies.  I realize that when I start thinking of the puppy possibilities, my heart feels light and happy.  Zoe and Scout taught us so much about love. Because of them, our hearts are full, and hopefully we'll get lucky again and find two more wonderful companions we can share our home with.

I've decided to keep a blog about our search and find of our next 4-legged companions.  And then, this blog will morph into a chronicle of the life and times of some new best friends...