Sunday, August 13, 2017

........but she is mighty

The smallest member of this this family is by far the most sporty and athletic, she loves to ride bikes, to swim, to skateboard well I think you get the picture and doesn't particularly care how hot it is. When Lily's boss asked if she could help every day for 3 weeks straight with a triathlon camp she said yes. After the first couple of days I knew Rosie would love it and signed her up over her objections of, but mum camp, but mum do I have to go without you, but mum, but mum, but mum why am I going to camp, BECAUSE YOU ARE GOING TO LOVE IT. And of course she did. Because mama really does know best.

It wasn't a full day camp it was just a couple of hours in the afternoon. This coach is not like any of the coaches that used to coach the girls to swim he is so much fun. He teaches the fun aspect of sport not the competition. OHMYGOD what a difference. It was hard to get my head around in the beginning cos I am a type A and I get the job done and don't have time for people poncing about but after a little while I could see that ALL the kids were loving it and were having fun and that was what it was about.

Since this is the cliff notes version, straight to pictures it is
Day one: who knew there was such a thing as triathlon laces. lesson learnt.
Listening to the instructor
I LOVE LOVE LOVE this photo
triathlon laces in place which means lace up shoes become slip ons. very important when your feet are wet
runing in the pouring rain. the kids loved it
it poured for 2 hours striaght but no lightening
why yes, she really is this skinny and this long. BUT SHE IS VERY HEALTHLY
but why do I have to go to camp...because you WILL love it!!!
skinny little sprinter
sidewards running
swimming: her favourite part. If this cap looks familiar it is an actual cap from the British Olympic team thanks to Mad uncle Anduy and Crazy Auntie Sally
Looking tired
skill practice
their faces make me laugh. this is her friend that she met at camp. she is another little expat from the UK and they got on like a house on fire.
Im not sure if the circus was in town or if this really was coach Nick!
getting sorted
I loved camp mum and made friends!!! 
as you can tell these photos were in no particular order just random ones from here and there. I just might catch up eventually

Friday, August 11, 2017


The biggest changes around these parts have taken place with Houndish, as she is affectionately known. She is still afraid of her own shadow and still a scared of everything but now she is willing to go to new places and loves to meet new people. A couple of reassuring words and we can usually get her moving, sometimes it takes a little more like a reassuring hug and then she is fine and sometimes she still has no intentions of moving whatsoever. We have to spell the word C.A.R. as riding in it is her absolute favourite thing in the world. She leaps into the back like a boss and will stay there all day if need be.

Thunder is the enemy and after many loud tropical thunderstorms and many horrid reactions from Luna we headed back to the vet for some advice and help. Since the weatherman are thoroughly useless guessing the time of our daily tropical thunderstorms is a crap shoot at best and getting this poor pathetic dog medicated in time is a game of Russian Roulette. I hate to see her medicated for no reason but if she isn't she tries to jump out of windows and since this house has 2 stories it can get hairy.

We have much more fun than we do worrying times and we recently took her to a friends house with a pool. She showed a huge interest in going in so we let her.

Greyhounds typically can't swim as they have no body fat and are not buoyant. Houndish did OK, nothing stellar but OK.
But she LOVED being in the pool
she just kept getting in and out and swam a bit and got out again
rinse repeat
and the kids loved it too
and when the girls raced she raced up and down the length of the pool howling like a nutter
And then she decided they must need help so like a first class lifeguard, Houndish dove into the deep end of the pool to rescue her peeps and she a lead balloon and needed her cute little self rescuing. Thankfully the girls are strong, not only strong swimmers but strong and were able to get her to the side so that I could pull her out. We had a couple of hours minutes of scary stuff but she recovered quickly and after a few short moments she resorted to tearing around like a mad thing all over again. However her swimming days are done, done I tell you and it's a bit sad.

However she still runs around the pool area and still races the girls from the other side of the pool fence. She has hung up her bikini at least for now.

Racing on land is more her shtick
those ears ❤
her baboon bum as it known in the greyhound world is filling in really well but we can safely say that it is never going to go away and will remain a scar of her racing and kennel days. we find it endearing...well that's what we tell ourselves. 
Lily discovered a website where we can watch all of her races. She was a machine and insanely fast, which would explain why she raced for 4 years. She must have heard the word retirement being tossed around the kennel in the latter part of February as in her race on March 6th she literally trotted around the track like a geriatric. She wasn't even in the frame. She went from wonder hound to old lady and that proved to be her last race and she came to us 2 weeks later. She was done...............luckily for us.

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

my name is dawn and i suck at blogging

I can't believe I don't do this anymore. It used to be my morning ritual but then came the hound and the morning ritual changed and now involves going out for a walk. Maybe once school starts again but then again probably not. The girls are asking that I keep it going but I am feeling very luke warm about it.

Let me see what has happened since April...OMG seriously, APRIL?

Lily continues to teach swimming.
Rosie attended and had a blast at triathalon camp
Both girls finished the school year with a flourish.
We are loving having a hound.
Hound loves to run.
Hound loved to swim...once. she jumped in the deep end of a pool and scared the bejeezus out of herself. end of swimming career.
We have had visitors, lots of them
Having fun and loving life.

so, this can't be done in one post. go figure!

If I'm going to make a come back it will have to be soon.

Sunday, April 23, 2017

more learning

I might be an over thinker when it comes to some things and the dog is on the top of the list. This trait can make things overly complicated. Things were going swimmingly and then we hit a snag so I called the rescue and we all got some much needed training.  Luna went to "doggy jail" for a few days and we went to boot camp.

Things have gone swimmingly since her return. I am the boss and she is, after all, a dog.

We have met dogs in the neighbourhood and thankfully she ignores them, every last one. Yesterday some man with a fluff ball decided to push his luck, and even though I said she is very timid and doesn't really care for animals he knew best and marched up OUR driveway with his fluff ball. He then allowed his dog to sniff her and push her buttons. she backed away and I followed her. Luna at that point showed that she has mouth full of teeth and snarled at the dog. He still didn't flinch. You can't fix stupid. This is a prey dog, trained to hunt small things! 

Yesterday we went on a grey-date, it's a play date for greyhounds. As absurd as this sound, hounds only recognise other hounds. They have only ever lived in a kennel with 50-60 of them and have never seen other breeds. On our first trip to the vet she sat shaking at my feet surrounded by other nosey dogs and some free roaming cats, she hated it but as we left the exam room she saw another greyhound and gleefully trotted up to him as he cowered in the corner and they became stuck to each other.

Her first meeting with her new friend went exactly the same. Leslie and her dog, Fave, wandered in to a very secluded park that she told us about and the dogs were instant friends. It's very odd and quite amusing, who knew a dog could be a breed snob.

Luna and Rosie running ahead to check that the gates were closed so that the leashes could be taken off.
Why are we standing here doing nothing?
Fave. he is huge and so gentle
and that was that, fast friends
a walk to get things started
Now that I know I'm not the boss I don't even try to boss around my dog friends. 
I'm cute and very pretty.

Saturday, April 8, 2017

learning how to dog

I haven't had a dog since I was 16 ~ in case you aren't aware, that was quite some time ago. My parents had one after that but I had already moved away and I wasn't very fond of him since he growled the first time we met. I have managed to forget all the important stuff, like nail clipping, bathing, flea and tick control, heart worm meds, so much so that I am sure that we didn't do any of this. Lily informs me I must be wrong. Note to self, ask the daddio. I know they went to the vet regularly or the vet would come to us, I also know they were very well cared for so Lily is probably right.

This past fortnight has been one of lots of learning, specifically learning about greyhounds, who are, without a shadow of a doubt, quite unique and very very comical.

Luna doesn't like to walk, she really doesn't. I have been on forum after forum reading about this and all I can do is throw my hands in the air and say, when she is ready she will but in the meantime she keeps freezing. I have better luck than Lily as I just take my phone with me and give myself plenty P L E N T Y of time. When she freezes I read and then she gets bored so off we go, sometimes only 2 steps.

This was this morning. I think the entire neighbourood heard our laughter.
Lily hid her face as if you wouldn't know it was her.
I can't even look without laughing. Don't you just love how Luna is all relaxed? Rosie is in her jammies as it was very early when we left but then the sun came up. oh my.
The first time I picked her up she went as stiff as a board and it was like carrying a baby giraffe but after a second, or two, she decided it was lovely and she went all limp. Another note to self: dog is nuts.

This conversation was overheard by yours truly.

Child L: I'm going to check her for ticks.
Me: she is up to date on all her meds;
Child L: OMG I've found a tick, I've found a tick.
Child R: urghh That's not a tick that's her nipple!!!
Child L: oh, no wonder she was so resistant to me pulling it off.
Me: OMG you tried to pull her nipple off?
Child R: Yeap.
She wasn't injured, just her dignity. I gave child L an anatomy lesson and saved her from phantom tick scares.

Luna had her first vet visit this week and she is up to date on everything, they took out her dissolving stitches cos they hadn't dissolved and gave her a clean bill of health. She is much to skinny as she is still at her racing weight so at 4 yrs old she is on puppy chow as it is very high in calories.

She also had her her first bath and I can't say she was overly impressed.

Please excuse the old gate in the background I need to get to the tip
Why are you doing this to me?
I repeat, why are you doing this?
Oh my look at that fancy new gate that I BUILT...yes I did!
those eyes melt hearts
She appears to be getting smaller by the second, maybe she shrank!
Lily is so good with her, Rosie too but Lily is bossy so Ro got to hold the lead
And here are some random photos cos I like them.
always sleeping
furry little toes
Lily calls her Pirate due to her snaggle toof
Nice and clean after her bath and looking playful
Those ears! I call them her play ears. 
When she has a mad five minutes you better watch out cos she hauls arse around here, Lily calls it the zoomies, I call it time to dive for cover. She reminds me, in many ways, of the Weimeraner we had when I was growing up, she was my favourite favourite dog.

Tonight the girls are at their dads and someone isn't going to bed, she is keeping a vigil, I fear this is going to be a VERY long night.

Sunday, April 2, 2017

meet the hound.

This post will probably shock some of you and appall a few others but it is what it is and we are thrilled to bits.

For quite some time I have seriously been contemplating getting a dog. No one is more surprised by this than me, myself and I. I blame a lot of it on my clients and their wonderful dogs and of course the fact that growing up we ALWAYS had a dog and I loved it. But as with all good stories there is a but and this but was I was never sure if I could be the strong alpha type due to being bitten and that underlying fear.

I researched and researched and I knew we needed something small as we don't have a big garden....but I don't like little dogs. More people are bitten by small dogs than big ones. So on and on we went. I kept being sent to greyhound pages in my research. You can fill out, the perfect pet for you, questionnaires and they guide you through some choices.

Greyhounds are the least aggressive dog...hmmm. Retired racers don't like a lot of exercise as they are done with that nonsense and if you can find a hound that is being retired the chances are it will be put to sleep because frankly it's not worth anything anymore to it's owner. Greys are people pleasers and very very sensitive. You never raise your voice to a grey hound you lower you tone and use the hand signal for stop. And finally they are perfect apartment pets, well I don't live in an apartment but if they are fine there they will be fine here. Here we have every kind of rescue known to man, in fact I didn't even know there were so many breeds of dog so I looked for a greyhound rescue, and found a lot of them. We have more dog racing in Florida than in any other state. sad sad sad.

A few weeks ago I joined the Friends of Greyhound newsletter and when they had an event we attended. There must have been 30 hounds in a huge run and I wasn't even nervous, it was weird. We talked to people and dogs kept coming up to us for a lean and again I was fine with it. The more we talked to owners the more I realised this dog was for us. There were some available dogs for adoption there, all rescued racers. We met a dog called LuLu and she sealed the deal. We filled out an application. We had to read a a manual and pass a test. she was delivered to the house and the fun began.

In her 4 years of life LuLu had never seen a house EVER. She walked in quite happily, with Michelle from the rescue and promptly smacked in to a sliding glass door. Michelle whipped from her pocket some post-it notes and placed them at greyhound eye level. Then we toured the house and tweaked some more things. If you have never seen a mirror it is terrifying as there is a dog and you can't get to it and it's confusing. Never had toys or love or anything..sad sad sad. And now she has a name forever and it is Luna.

We have gone online and matched her tattoos with her racing history and know so much about her. She was raced heavily. She must have been good as she seems to have raced more than most although her stats didn't prove so impressive.

Things went well the first night, she slept in her crate with us close by but then, then there was a horrid evil bad storm and she freaked. And it was horrid but we have all recovered but as I am typing this another one is rolling in and she is terrified. A client gave her a thundershirt so I put it on her but possibly not fast enough. She is upstairs and has no plans on coming down again....EVER. I have learnt since that first night that it is best to ignore her when she gets like this but to offer her a safe space.

One step forward, 2 steps back.

This is Lunas impression of a statue. What she is doing is actually called freezing or statueing. It's a greyhound thing. We can be out for a walk and all of a sudden she hits the brakes and nothing, NOTHING can get her going again. You can't pull on their necks but you can push from behind but Luna just goes in circles when we do this to her. The other day I was stuck in one spot for 45 minutes. It will get better with time but right now she scares easily. Yesterday was a huge improvement in the statue arena. 

Shortly after arriving hence the panting, trying out her bed.
her nose is a little crooked, apparently her racing muzzle was too small. grrrr
greyhounds are typically very large, not Luna
This is called roaching, it's how greyhounds like to sleep. Hah they look like dead cockroaches.
I can't put in to words the joy she has brought to the girls

Greyhounds are complicated and it's funny. They get scared easily and look for love all the time. They cannot sit but they can lie. They don't typically lie on their chests. their thyroids are different than other dogs as are their temperatures. Their skin is super thin and they lack oil. They do not smell doggy and barely shed. She can get injured very easily. She is a 60lb toddler.

 So before you say, she is a tie and we won't be able to travel, YEP, you are right and we are OK with this. I didn't know how much we needed her.

We are still waiting for her tail to wag but she is starting to greet us as we walk in to the room. Her life on the track has been void of many things but I can look at her and tell her from the depths of my soul, that it's only good stuff from her on out.

Welcome Lunabellabunababoonbutt~ we think you are all that and a cup of tea.