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Current blog look inspired by and dedicated to Chance, Blaze, Fiona and Zappa who all kicked ass against cancer and liver disease.

Brut Quote

Brut Quote

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Sneak attack!

 While Mommy is busy with birthday candles (and believe us she's got enough) we decided to sneak in and take over the blog and show you what Mommy really does around here.  

This is Boxer.  Boxer is about to get a sneak attack.    

And we always get in trouble for teasing the cats!
Where does she think we learned it from?
Gotcha Mom!!

Monday, November 29, 2010

Monday Memories-The White Pack

Brut and  Silver had 3 mini-packs in their litter:  3 puppies in the Husky-looking pack, 3 black puppies with white on their chest and paws pack and...

 the 4 puppies that made up the white pack, all hanging on to Mommy at one day old. 

Saturday, November 27, 2010

THANK YOU DADDY! and the Sat. Blog Hop

Thanksgiving may be over but the spirit lives on. 
Fiona is always grateful because every night when Daddy gets up from his chair...

She's the first one to the peanut butter that he leaves out. 

And tonight there was an extra treat because...
You can't have peanut butter without crackers!


Friday, November 26, 2010

Brut's Answer for Everything

Sometimes in life you just got to dig!

Hope our everyone had a Happy Thanksgiving.
Enjoy the weekend. 

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Thanking Alex

“Sittin’ on the Dock of the Bay” by Otis Redding is Alex’s song. I find myself humming the song when I realize I am missing Alex. Holidays seem to do that to you. Thinking of those that have gone before and feeling the need to bring them in close.

Alex was given to us by a friend of my husband’s. It was during a period of my life when I didn’t know if I was ready to have another dog. My husband knew the dog well and always spoke of what an amazing dog Alex was. I had met Alex once, right after we got married, never knowing he would end up being ours someday.

My husband was right. Alex was an amazing dog. His beautiful flowing Collie fur and deep thoughtful eyes that had a wolf‘s edge made him stand out. He had a mouth that wouldn’t quit and for some reason the word “cow,” would send him into a barking frenzy. How quiet the house was when he was gone.

We used to live on an open hay field where we could watch the Aurora Borealis or the Northern Lights. During these beautiful dances of light, we would both sit in silent awe as the energy pulsed through the sky. Our spirits connected with each other and the spirit of life around us. We seemed to be able to interpret each other thoughts and senses as we united within the universe.

Alex and I bonded over many special moments together. Seeming to know what the other was thinking. Understanding that primal need to be part of nature and the Earth. During these days of gratitude, I give thanks for Alex teaching me the ways of a canine spirit.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010


Blaze watching the Back Dog action

For those who don't know, our six dogs are divided into two separate packs.  In this post How We Became Two Packs, I have explained how the Front Dogs and Back Dogs came to be. The short version is when Blaze and Chance (from our own litter) came back home the Back Dogs, Brut, Silver, Zappa and Fiona didn't get along with them and Chance and Blaze became the Front Dogs.   We have to keep them separated and that is how the Front Dogs and Back Dogs became who they are.

There is a double fence that divides the Front Dogs and Back Dogs yard.  A tarp covers the Front Dogs side for all of the dogs protection.  About three weeks ago we had a horrible wind storm that tore the top part of the tarp down, leaving some exposure between the two packs of dogs.  We decided to leave the large hole in the tarp and let nature take it's course bringing it down.

Chance and Blaze are able to stand and see the Back Dogs happenings.  It has been a success.  A little barking and some taunting, then everyone goes their own way.  Right now I am impressed with the reactions I am seeing between the two.  It becomes another step in integration.  I had been thinking of making hole in the tarp, but never got around to doing it.  Instead Mother Nature did it for me!  She obviously thought we were ready.  So here we go...the next phase of the 24 Paws of Love!  

Monday, November 22, 2010

Monday Memories-Brut bonding

This is my absolute favorite picture of Brut at 6 weeks old, when we first got him. He looked so sweet and innocent in this photo, I'm glad I was able to captured the moment.

Today is Brut’s Gotcha Day. He was born on Oct. 11, 2006.  We picked him up Nov. 22, 2006. 

Our first real connection started with this board that Brut is pictured standing on that divided the kitchen and living room. I needed to be in the kitchen and he was causing quite a raucous in that living room. So I led him to the couch, had him get up on it and gave him a treat. When I was back in the kitchen, he came to board and started barking again, I stood with my back turned to him and as soon as he was quiet, I lead him to the couch and gave him a treat. We repeated this several times, until he stood on the board, and when he saw me ran to the couch, I followed and gave him treat. There was nothing like that gleam in his eye when he figured out the game. He was so proud of himself as he ran to the couch and jumped up, waiting for his treat, like he was really outsmarting me!

That moment still bring me to tears and make me laugh out loud. He was such a difficult puppy, unlike any I’d ever had and to finally make bond with him was one of the best moments of my life.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Make a Caption and the Sat. Blog Hop

  We loved to here your thoughts on this crazy scene!

p.s. thank you for your warm wishes, mommy is feeling much better.  
The power of doggy love!

Join in the fun of the Saturday Blog Hop!

Friday, November 19, 2010

Cash for Comments


Mommy's not feeling so good, but we wanted to make sure we give a big bark for Noah who is asking for you to post on comment on their Cash for Comments and they will donate 50 cents for every comment they get to their local Humane Society. Please stop by and show your support, all it cost you is a comment!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Brut Cuddles

Brut has always tolerated being cuddled for about a minute or two. Being the independent alpha dog, he just can't bring himself to do it. He always had that look that said, ah, that's enough.

This past year as he has gotten older and his aggression and dominance are in check, I have begun to notice a difference. He is craving our touch. He wants to cuddle and he doesn't mind us falling over him. He has become more affectionate than he has ever been.

Brut has always been lovable and playful. He loves attention and getting petted, but anything that involved more closeness would make him take off after a couple of minutes. When he would be lying on bed, I would give him a quick belly rub, until I would get "the look." Now we can cuddle and share our affection. I am so amazed at how soft his fur is because he would never let me pet him long enough to remember. Now he can't get enough and he is eating it up.

Brut is happier than he has ever been. The transformations I have witness with him have completely blown me away. The dog that wanted to terrorize the world is letting the sweet, lovable creature in him show what an incredible dog he is. For the first three years of his life, I never would have believe that with his aggression and dominance we would ever reach any level of happiness and peace. Brut will always be Brut, but I love this softer, beautiful side he is showing. What the miracles of love can do.

We are giving a shout out for Noah who is asking for you to post on comment on their Cash for Comments and they will donate 50 cents for every comment they get to their local Humane Society. Please show your support, all it cost you is a comment!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Walking with Angels

My highlight for the day was taking Fiona and Zappa for a walk.  I was having a rough day and it was time to just get out of the house and walk.


First I took Fiona and her guard instantly came down.  Her tough girl attitude suddenly became quiet and loving.  Her body trembles with happiness.  She was perky and lighthearted like a giddy school girl who can't believe she was chosen for this special time together.  Her gratitude shows by nose bumping my hand or thigh for thanks.

Next I took Zappa.  Zappa was being more comical than usual.  He usually gets in his serious stance as if he knows there's business to take care of.  Like in my story Who is Zappa?  Instead he was quite bouncy and silly.  His guard was also down.   His whole body wiggle with happiness as he pounced from one spot to the next.  He was letting his playful side out, a side he rarely shows.  He was such joy to walk with.  He too was grateful for this special time together. 

The treat was equal for all of us.  They were grateful for this time and so was I.  There was nothing I needed more than to spend that quality time with them.  Their happiness was contagious and their loving sweetness melted all my problems away.  What could be better than walking with angels?


Tuesday, November 16, 2010

What's your favorite part?

We love everything about our dogs, but Daddy and I have a few different opinions on which part of a dog's body is our favorite.

One of Daddy's favorites are the ears.
Brut's pointy ones and...

all the lab-looking ones.

One of my favorites is their eyes.

But we both agree, there is nothing like a Husky tail that wins our vote!

We love how it just seems to float and bobble as if suspended in air.

We love that half moon curve.

  And how soft and fluffy they are. 

There's just something about their tails that give you the warm, fuzzy feeling with that silly bounce that means  fun.  

So how about you?  What part of your dog's body do you love the most? 

Monday, November 15, 2010

Monday Memories-Chance and the boy

Chance's first six months home with us.  This is his story:

He stands at the corner of the fence, waiting, staring at the long road looking for what he has lost.  His eyes hoping to see the boy again.  He continues to wait.  He will never give up.  For it doesn't matter what happened to him, the neglect and abuse, all he cares about the boy.  No one can question his love for the boy.  His loyalty is fierce.  He waits every day.  The day ends with sad eyes.  He has come back home where he was born. He knows he is loved here, but he always looks back for the boy.  Lost and confused at the turn of events, he never gives up trying.  Where is the boy?  He wouldn't just leave him. 

For months he continues his empty search.  He struggles to understand.  He finds comfort in new arms that understand his pain.  He slowly begins to accept, the boy is gone, fading into the distance like a sunset that will never rise again. Unlike the boy, Chance never stopped loving him.  He sometimes sits and listens to the secrets of the wind that carries his love to the boy.

Chance's story here...     

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Dog Talk and the Saturday Blog Hop

After four years Brut, how much more information do you need?
Don't you trust me by now?

Check out Life with Dogs for more info on the Hop

Friday, November 12, 2010

Hunting Season Warning

Rifle and Muzzle loader season for Whitetail Deer is fast approaching in our area. While I do not hunt, I once lived with an avid hunting family. They warned me of one thing:

Hunters have been known to shoot loose dogs while hunting. Whether it be by accident or from chasing and scaring off their game.

This is a subject that I feel very strongly about. I have not ever experienced a tragedy of this nature, but I'm so thankful I was made aware of this and would like to share this with others who may not know.

Prevention is key:

The most important precaution is to avoid hunting areas, forest, fields and swamps during these times. Go to a park or other secure area.

Find out when local hunting seasons are from your DNR or other local source.

Keep your dogs secure in your home and yard.

If you walk through hunting areas:

Have you and your dog wear Hunter Orange.

Keep your dog leashed. It only takes a second to loose sight of your dog and it may be too late.

Stay on a designated path.

It is unfortunate, but sadly it happens. I've heard several stories of hunters shooting themselves or another by being startled, because they have fallen asleep or have an itchy trigger finger. I have nothing against hunters and I know this does not pertain to every hunter, but I would like let others know it can happen.

Lets keep every one safe this season and most of all our furry friends.

Is this enough Hunter's Orange, Mom?

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Paw Prayers Crossed

I've come to rely heavily on our dogs for so much in my life, I can not imagine being without them or having to make heartwrenching decision about their health and well-being.

I had a terrible day.  A program I volunteer for seems to keep putting a monkey wrench in itself.  It can be very disturbing at times because I don't really feel like I'm really able to help the person I am there for.  Being a volunteer, I have very little say so and even though my vote might be heard, it would do little.  I couldn't wait to get home to the dogs.  I spent all afternoon and most of the evening with them.  I was grateful for their love and attention and the dependability that they were there. 

I read two different blogs and my heart stopped.  Rolling and Romping in the Rockies, K is having her toe amputated tomorrow due to cancer or infection and Grey Hares on My Sofa had to let go of her beloved Greyhound Dixie.  I don't know how we do it as dog lovers.  Loving our dogs to pieces and then having to let them go or make decisions that affect their lives.  Neither of these dog lovers had easy decision to make and I can only imagine the range of feelings associated with making these choices.

If you haven't already, please stop by both of these blogs and give them your warm thoughts.  Dog lovers are a rare breed. and because of this wonderful love we share, we are empathize with other owners and understand their pain.  We've all had to make difficult choices with our pets and know far too well, they are not just animals.  Our pets are our friends, our confidants, and are full of unconditional love.  We understand how our pets become a part of you and you them and how we always want to do what is right for our best friends.

For K and her family and Dixie's family we would like to give a warm hug and Paws of Prayer for them.
We are thinking of you.   

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Who is Zappa?

Who am I?

I asked myself this question on a walk with Zappa.  Just him and I on the trails of the forest.  I have seen the cute, puppy-like face, with that adorable expression and wise old eyes always giving kisses and hugs.  A heartwarming dog, gentle in manner, sweet and lovable.  His other attributes are outsmarting his father, Brut and defending himself against the sinister Fiona during playtime.  He tends to be a bit of a loner, like his mother Silver, which is how he comes to be pester by Fiona.  She wants to play.  He is all mouth and always starts the "Howling Choir" performance.  He can be tough when he needs to be but truly is more of a lover and an intense thinker, pondering the world around him.  This is the Zappa I see every day, until we are alone, pacing through the forest or streets of our neighborhood.  It then I begin to wonder, Who is Zappa?

The Bad Boy comes out

As we hit the trails, I began the notice the change.  Zappa seems to stand taller and his shoulders are broader, as if he's finally fitting into his own skin.  His nose is on fire as he calculates every scent he encounters.  His coat is bristled as if taking every sight and sound is radiating through the tips of  his fur.  He is electrified with the rush of the tale that is being filter through the collection of his senses.

I watch this metamorphic transformation as his primitive senses override the sweet, innocent puppy dog I know and witness Zappa come into his own.  His manner becomes brusque, like I am walking a bear.  His eyes dare me to question him.  He wants to be the one in control.  His demand is subtle but this proud dog is asking for my respect.
Respect me

This rebirth of Zappa happens every time we are away from the pack.  Most of the time it is difficult to detect.  It hasn't been until recently that I have picked up on his clues.  This walk he didn't hold back.  Everything in him was alive and charged.  The true Zappa ringing forth.

I have come to realize that I have a family of independent dogs and they are always asking my respect.  Whether it is as demanding as Brut and as delicate as Zappa, and I know I have a long ways to go with all of them.  Zappa taught me a valuable lesson, I have to earn my respect with him, just as much, if not more than I did with Brut.  Zappa showed me who he is, now it was my turn to show him who I am.  And I thought dogs were all about sit and stay...BOL!!  What an exciting journey to embark upon.

Earn it!

Monday, November 8, 2010

Monday Memories- Puppy Clean

Modern appliances are wonderful tools, but sometimes they don't as good of job as one might like. 
Take it from the puppy experts.  They are never as clean as you think. 

I think we'd better help Mommy with these.

Look, I found a spot right here.
I've got one up here.
It's everywhere.

Better call in the troops!

Why does Mommy even use this thing?
When is she going to learn?
It's only clean if it's PUPPY CLEAN!!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Saturday, November 6, 2010

The First Snow and Saturday Blog Hop

We had our first snow of the season.  It was more like tiny snowballs of hail, but it stuck around for the day and activated the dogs play mode.  Especially Silver. 

Come and get me, Big Boy Brut!!


Join us the Saturday Blog Hop.

Go to Life with Dogs for more information on the Blog Hop.

Friday, November 5, 2010


Now sing if with me...R-E-S-P-E-C-T find out what it means to me...

You can't have any relationship without respect.  I believe this includes your dog.  Where did I learn this valuable lesson?  Yep, you guess it, Mr. Brut.  That boy demanded respect from the time we brought him home.  He commanded to be heard, acknowledged, and the freedom to be the proud dog he is.  

Respect blew doors wide open between Brut and I and taught me about equality in a human-dog relationship. While I have always had a high respect for animals, Brut helped to take to another level.  I have never been comfortable with the master-slave relationship, but didn't honestly find the total freedom from this idea until we got Brut.  He taught me the true meaning of respect.  Loving unconditionally, trusting with affection and giving him the space to become the dog he is today.

Conventional training suffocated both of us.  It never gave us the space to grow or be ourselves.  It bound us. Our spirits are too restless and creative to conform to standards not to mention we weren't being true to ourselves.  Which I find is the key, being true to ourselves.  Being who we really are and accepting each other as we are.

I have struggle with this most of my life.  I have struggle with accepting Brut for how he is.  Dealing with his dog aggressions has not been easy.  I have hated that part of him for a long time.  The day I looked into those eyes and saw the aggressor in him, I didn't see a killer.  I saw a dog full of hurt and immense pain that made my heart stop.  He was suffering.  I understood his pain for it was my own.  I never looked at him the same again.

From there it took our relationship to another level of respect.  He taught me to give him more and he gave it back in return.  Each step leading us closer to healing with a higher regard for each other.  We were both trying to break free from that box of rules that others were trying to shove us in.  There is a deeper meaning to our relationship that can only be explained with our eyes.  I have carried this value on to each puppy that was born from our litter, each of our dogs, our cats, our duck, and every creature I have encounter.

Life is too short not to savor every precious moment.  To learn to understand and accept another.  There is nothing sweeter than a meaningful relationship that encompasses respect and love.  When Brut looked me in the eyes that day, I did not deserve the respect he gave me, but he gave it to me anyways.  I was humbled, because I hadn't earned it and he still gave it to me.  The ultimate love.  I believe he knew far greater my struggles with him than I knew and because he understood, he gave me what I needed most, respect.

To understand how my hate towards Brut came about you can read A Little Bit About Brut and Me.         

Thursday, November 4, 2010


This is Mr. UH-OH Man

He lets you know if there is anything wrong.

Here's Chance playing with Mr. UH-OH...

Looks like Mr. UH-OH is in a whole heap of hurt!
He even got a case of the hiccups!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Our Silver lining

Silver at 7 weeks old

I have always had a fondness for Huskies.  I didn't know very much about them, but loved their wolf-like features.  When Daddy saw the ad for Lab/Husky puppies, we were thinking Silver would be more Husky looking and were rather surprised when she looked like a Black Lab.  Since we were both interested in more of the Husky features, we wanted to breed her with a Husky.  Well, that's where Brut came in and then we had a litter of ten Husky-looking puppies. 

We found that we were hooked.  Their character, wit, and their playful ways were just what we needed.  This all started with Silver and a Husky hope that I don't remember Daddy or I ever speaking of before, she just fell in our lap.  In fact I don't think we ever discussed the breed of dog we wanted or were thinking of, until Daddy saw that ad and everything seemed to fall in place.

Personally, I have always wanted a Bloodhound or a Great Dane, while my husband mentioned later that he was interested in a Newfoundland or a St. Bernard.  Funny how we never mentioned either of these things before to each other.  I remember when he came bursting through the door and told me of the ad he saw for puppies.  We jumped in the car and raced out there, somehow knowing this was just the dog we were looking for.  I remember how we looked to each other with slight disappointment as the entire litter looked like Black Labs and taking a moment with our decision.  Daddy saw something about the little one, staying behind all her brothers and sisters who wasn't begging for our attention.  When he picked her up, we looked at each other and smiled, we knew she was the one.

Silver at 7 years old

And so began our journey with Huskies.  Having no idea what we were getting into, we fell in love with their beautiful and conniving ways.  We think it is simply amazing how we never planned for anything and got everything we needed and then some.  24 Paws of Love.         

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Beware of the POWER


The feeling will be intense
At times it will overtake you.
There will be no stopping it.
It will come from out of no where,
For no reason at all.

Will you be able to handle it?
Can you survive all this emotion at once?
It will change your life forever.
Are you ready?
For the power of unconditional dog love.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Monday Memories-Fiona and Zappa-4 months old

Our last Monday Memories with Fiona and Zappa, Eva the Sheltie wanted to know more about Zappa and  Fiona.  You can always read more about Fiona and Zappa on their pages.

Fiona and Zappa were and still are the best behaved of the bunch.  After the last puppy from the litter left, they were three months old.  While they were rambunctious and crazy as a couple of puppies should be, they had a life of love from conception to birth to current.  They have never known any abuse or neglect and grew up well cared for.  Since we choose them from the start they have never experienced anything else.


Zappa and Fiona are the best of friends and do everything together.  They depend on each other.  They never fight, except for maybe a quick spat.  Fiona quickly claimed Zappa even before the last of the puppies from the litter were gone.

You, big brother, are MINE!!

Always together! 

Fiona taking the top.

The time with Zappa and Fiona as puppies seemed to fly by in a blur.  Training, walks and playtime seem to take up all our time.  Looking back, I wish I could go back and hold them a little longer and tell them how much I love them.  The time was so short before Blaze came back and everything turned upside down. 

I wouldn't trade Blaze and Chance coming back for anything in the world, but I miss that time before when it was just Zappa and Fiona.  They were perfect examples of puppies who were loved.