Tuesday, August 4, 2009


I hope I will be able to convey my sense of frustration without sounding critical or blaming, but I wanted to share yet another difficult part of being a breeder -- the loss of control. There is such an investment in trying to produce quality puppies, and then the raising -- well, that is eight weeks of nothing but work, as you know. And then you must open your hands and let go -- trusting that the puppies will be okay in their new lives.

In the past six weeks or so, we have had some really unfortunate medical situations with puppies. For example, two G Litter puppies had surgery -- but neither had the condition for which surgery was recommended (note: both of the surgeries made complete sense based on what their vets were saying so I am not at all blaming owners!). An owner of another puppy was advised that her puppy had elbow dysplasia and would likely need surgery (sending us all into a tizzy) -- but the OFA and an orthopedic vet found that the elbows were fine. And so on... there are others but I will spare you all the details...

If I sometimes sound skeptical of veterinarians, it is because I am. The recent string of unfortunate incorrect diagnoses does not help my confidence level in the veterinary profession, even as I know all of us make mistakes. And yet what can you do? I am not there to hear all the info and I am not the one living with the puppy or paying the bills -- and I willingly sent off a piece of my heart and in doing so, I gave up control.

And, of course, everyone thinks their vet is the BEST (except me, who cannot seem to find a decent new vet in Montana) and so I have to be so careful. But to be honest -- sometimes I feel like I am watching a train wreck and there is nothing I can do and little I can say without jeopardizing relationships. My life would be so much better if everyone just thought exactly as I do!

Well, that is my version of a rant -- I know we are all doing the best we can and that an armchair quarterback does not really have all the necessary information. But the past few weeks have been hard on my breeder heart and remind me of yet another reason why our litters will remain quite limited.

And now for some news and pictures. If you have not already watched Maize and my niece, Elizabeth (age 10), run agility then you will want to check it out at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zHY5B-txjNc

Elizabeth is visiting from California and so I entered Maize in a class at the agility trial this past weekend just so Elizabeth could have a chance to run a dog; not only did they do a great job but they won the class! You should have seen her face when she picked up her blue ribbon :)

Here is Elizabeth and Cadi on our walk to the river yesterday.

Sydney is thinking hard about becoming a vegetarian after learning the future fate of her friends...

Here are Girly and the cat formerly known as Karma and now Karnage -- do not be fooled by her sweet innocence...

...because here is her most recent victim... (she will be getting a loud bell soon)

Cadi got her Novice Agility Jumpers title with a first place! She got this toy, which she cannot have because of her tendency to destroy and eat stuffed things. However, Asia and Syd enjoyed playing with it -- under supervision!

We are officially in Fire Season here in Montana, which means it is smokey but what amazing sunsets! Kim was up for a fast visit last weekend and now my sister, brother-in-law and Elizabeth are here for the week. On Saturday Elizabeth and I will be going in the local town parade with Maize and Cadi as a brace team -- how cute will that be?!

I hope you have nothing to rant about but if you do, it goes better with chocolate.

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