It was a long, long drive from New York to Maine stopping at almost every rest stop to take a break but we finally got here, did a few circles, found the house, threw down the futons, grabbed a bedspread and crashed.  I didn’t even bother with finding the box with my PJs in it.

The next morning we didn’t want to go through the entire truck so we decided to find a place with a cup of coffee.  Who cares if we didn’t brush our teeth?  Although I thought I knew where the house was we still had to make a few circles to get to the main street.  We skipped the cafes and went up the street to get a cup of coffee and dog food, and up the street, and up the street, and up the street.  Finally finding a little gas mart we got what we needed and came back and circled and circled and circled until we found the house.  I think there must be something the matter with the map that I have.

Right on schedule the unloading crew came.  A very nice pair of young men.  One had a baby that I offered to buy but was turned down.  It only took a few hours to fill up the house will maybe a few to many things and off they went to another job.  You have to give these guys credit because you know that their backs are going to be way bad when they get older.  After that, the computer  hook up people were here and got that taken care of.

Then came the “finding out which room things go into” game and after we were exhausted we decided to get some groceries.  Oops, too late, everything was closed so it was tuna sandwiches and potato chips.  Nothing wrong with that.  Since the bed was up, at least we didn’t have to sleep on the floor.  The only problem was that the mattress was a spring mattress and with two people and four dogs in a strange house it was …… well……. strange.

Monday morning my hubby decided to crack the whip and we really unpacked some boxes, moving the ones for sale to the cellar.  In the evening we decided that we were hungry.  Surprise!  So, circling around several times to find the main road we remembered that restaurants are closed here on Monday.  After another half hour of circling around to find the house we found something to eat and crashed again.

The next morning hubby had to return the truck and then I had to take him to the car rental to pick up a car.  After circling around to find the main road we got lost going to both places but finally he was off.  I realized that I forgot my purse to went directly home.  Was I tired or what?  I then hit the sack.

This morning, after listing all the things I found wrong with the house, the owner (?) came over and is still working on them.   He is another nice person and works hard.  Meanwhile I am unpacking and wondering why the heck I brought so much stuff.  Since there are no curtains on the bedroom windows and the room is small the dogs are mesmerized by all the people walking their dogs by the window.  I have a feeling there is a little curiosity in the neighbors about this person that circles their neighborhood once or twice a day!

So, more unpacking while I wait for him to finish so that I can finally get some groceries!  Again, thank you to my hubby for all the help he gave me.  Had it not been for him and my friend here in Maine I would have had no help at all.

Now…to take care of the dead battery on my car (I still have no groceries) by pulling the name of a garage out of a hat!

Getting there

Oh my!  I’m glad I planned one day per room for packing!  I start at one corner and go around the room picking what I can’t go without for a year plus when I get to the windows I stop and put in those horrible metal storm windows that you have to slide up but they don’t slide up.  I think that takes the longest time of all!  Then I sweep and make it look like nothing is missing to make it a bit easier for hubby and that way he doesn’t have to run around like crazy if someone wants to look at the house.

As advised, when you sell a house you should remove the clutter and make it as light as possible so at least that was all done.  When and if we sell the house at least about 2/3 is boxed and we will be able to put it in storage.  I sure hope it isn’t very soon though because I am beginning to fade, fade, fade….  I want to take everything.  Now I know what happens with downsizing.  We have always upsized!  I’m not quite ready to sell our stuff though.  I had an offer on my desk but I put the price so high they just gawked at me.  How can I sell my favorite things when I haven’t even decided on where I will be?

Hubby, of course stops working when he hears me cursing at the windows since I’m working upstairs now which is very nice of him.  I do have to admit that he has been my star supporter during this even though he is very depressed. (please don’t call the help line for him).

The plumber came over last night and removed all the roots from the pipe to the sewer, which was what was causing the problem.  That guy can do anything!  Except get up on a ladder.

If you are wondering why I have time to write this blog it is because I am now out of boxes and I can’t find my tape.  Grrrr.  I did the spare bedroom, which is what I am taking with me and the closet was horrendous.  Did we really ever use all those coats and single gloves?  And I thought I had just cleaned the house in September.  Does two months really make all that difference?  So, bags to the thrift store, which I hope my daughter will do because sometimes she can fit into my clothes and bags of trash then to sort through the coats.  Going to Maine?  Well I really need my bear coat and my rain coat and my jackets and my mukluks, and my high rain boots and my boots and my spikes and my shoes that are great in snow.  My gloves for riding horses (just in case) my super warm mittens and my regular gloves.  How to pack for a year?  No bikinis though, people would run away from me and I wouldn’t make any friends at all and what would they say at Meeting?  I HAD to pack one wash bowl and pitcher that was from my hubby’s family because the one from my family had too many pieces so you do see I am trying.  Now carry and pack the stuff in the last boxes, sweep the floor and the guest room is done.  If my husband has company he will have to have them sleep on the floor because I also took the futons for when we first arrive.

We are getting a 17′ truck and the manager came today and said if we want to get out of here Saturday then we will have to have three people.  One to pack, two to carry.  Up goes the price.  Actually, I am going to pay to have the manager here because we have a 10 hour (at least) drive ahead of us.  Hubby will get the truck, back it up to the barn, they will load it, move it to the front of the house, then add to the load and off we go.  It is supposed to be good weather, amazingly enough.

My dog just stole my pizza from my hand!

Speaking of dogs, Spider is doing much better.  She was off her food when I started packing.  She is old and doesn’t like new things.  She is the love of my life and leaving her here, although better for her, will be very hard.

I have decided to take my collection of jade flowers with me.  They were easy to pack and were in a corner cupboard that will fit nicely into my office.  I will paint it white and some other color (depending on what the floor is) which will brighten the room up nicely.  I’m not really crazy about knotty pine walls because they darken the rooms and I do like light.  This will, unfortunately be the only collection that I will take although my daughter has offered some red and white enamelware to match the red and white enamelware table that I am going to borrow from her.

Everything seems to be fitting together.  I don’t yet have a new neurologist nor have I selected my veterinarian but that should come in time and am not as frightened as I was.  Actually with all the support I have been getting, I am beginning to think that perhaps the Creator created this crises to make me move on to be happier.  I’m sure I will continue to have ups and downs and will always be angry at my family’s reaction and lack of sympathy for my problems but now perhaps I can start working on the forgiveness part (while I am shoveling the driveway!)

Rainbow Bridge

This post is to all the dogs I have lost through Face Book. All the dogs that I have come to know. Their actions, their looks, their quirks, their illnesses and the love that their owners give them. This blog is the most painful I have ever written because I am thinking back, although I am trying not to. Face Book has such a plus by letting me know the dogs and their owners and their happy times. Their celebrations, their birthdays, their wins if they show. Their people that love them, their silly outfits, how they look when they are a mess and how proud their parents are when they are groomed. All the times that an owner wants advice and all the replies that are received, right or wrong and when one gets sick how everyone kicks in to help and how everyone feels so helpless because there is nothing they can do but give advice. This blog is for all the old ones that have had a wonderful life and all the young ones that have had something horrible happen to them and their friends get sick to their stomach and think, “what if that were my loved one” or “remember when that happened to my baby?” This post is to all the friends that hurt for dogs we have lost through Face Book.

WE’RE HOME AND IT COULDN’T BE WORSE

The dog show is over and Karla and I are back from Colorado almost safe and sound.  My brain seems to be functioning again after two weeks and Karla now thinks she is Queen of the pack (but she still takes a wide berth around Sam who is REALLY cranky lately). 

We met new friends and old friends and only one really stupid person (which I brought to her attention).  I was sure I wouldn’t recognize anyone after so many years but guess what?  They didn’t recognize me!!!  Am I that much older looking?  Everything went as per usual.  Since my feet hurt, we took the easy way and asked for a wheelchair.  Why doesn’t everyone do that I wonder?  For a tip they zip you right to your gate thank goodness.  It has been so long since I have flown from a large airport I just couldn’t believe that you had to take a train to a plane! 

I had sedatives for Karla thank goodness!  I put her into her Airpod which slides over the handle of the suitcase.  The wheelchair pusher parked us at the gate.  I let go of the handle.  Karla wiggled.  The case and Karla fell over.  I grabbed for her.  The wheelchair fell over.  The entire terminal ran over to stare at the poor disabled lady on the floor who was helped up by the stewardess who stood beside me until I was on the plane.  I then gave Karla a sedative and ate my portion of the three peanuts shared by all the passengers.  At Chicago where I changed planes I noticed that Karla had her head stuck between the metal bar in her bag and the mesh and was just hanging there.  The company has yet to answer my letter.

Theresa and Chris came to get me which was very nice of them because I forgot the time change which made it at 10:30 pm and everyone had to get up early in the morning.  They were even nice enough to drive through McDonalds so I could eat.  I shared my burger with Karla and that was the end of her eating kibble…still.  (By the way, I absolutely love Chris and his son!) 

Monica was my chauffeur.  I think she wanted to put a tag on me with my name and address because I was so exhausted that I could never remember where her car was or make any decisions.  The only decision I made was that I WANT ARCHER!  He is absolutely adorable and could do one of Beamer’s tricks.  That was jumping back and forth from bed to bed.  I was in stitches.  I think though that he was as nervous as I.  Archer’s arrows go straight to Monica’s heart so I doubt she will let me have him.

Karla turned into this thing.  Here is this shy dog that I was worried about even taking into the hotel that saw a Great Dane and tried to attack it!  Good grief!!!  She was even patient when it took me about five tries to get my door open and pretended not to hear what I said when I broke my coffeepot.  The maid left a nice note:  1.  Turn on power, 2. put thingee in thing.  Leave thingee in thing because the hole you made is not to pour the coffee into the where the water goes, 3. pour water into water hole (they could label them) and press “brew”.

One of the shows Karla and the other undocked Aussie were dismissed from the ring.  I was so angry that I cried because I could see that yes, having a tail is not in the standard but I guess having feet pointing in all directions and a head on backwards is just fine.  Pamela saw that I was about to go in and kill the judge so she made me sit down and talked me into just asking the judge if they were dismissed because of their tails.  Of course the answer was “OH NO!”.  I actually smiled, shook her hand and left.  None of the tailed Aussies did as well as I expected.  Karla won her class but that was about it.  Karla felt like she had to ride in the back of the bus and drink out of a special water fountain just because her spine wasn’t amputated.

We had a wonderful party with the dogs and people running together at a beautiful house hosted by Katrina and David.  The next door neighbor came out of his door with a black lab, saw all these Aussies coming around the corner one by one non stop, turned around and went back in his door.  It really was hysterical.

Finally sad goodbyes and I go up to the desk to pay and they charge me over $100 per night!  I still have to straighten that one out.  Luck was with me again with Pamela walking up at the same time to tell them it should be just $80 something.  Of course the manager wasn’t there.  So later.

Got home smoothly due to wheelchair pushers and crashed.  In the middle of the night I wake up screaming because my back hurt so much.  I stood up and my feet didn’t hurt at all.  You figure that out.  I gulped one of  Hubby’s back pills and went to the foot doctor as scheduled and found that I had plantar fasciitis (sp).  So, he molded little ballerina shoes with COLD water and I will get the insoles in the mail.  I set up an appointment for the back.  Next day I thought I had the Camel flu but half-way through the day realized that I forgot to take my pills.

I’m not even going to mention what happened with my wonderful historian job and hubby and I decided to go up North tomorrow for the rest of the week so something else could happen bad to me (aside from the fact that we are having a difficult time selling our house and now they are putting a machine shop next to us).  This is in an agricultural zone.

Well, now that you all know that things have been normal with me I bid you adieu and warn you that you should probably stay as far away from me as you can!

Facebook Groups

Reading my favorite Facebook posts which are “Down East Portuguese Water Dogs”, “Dunham Lake Australian Terriers” and “Australian Terrier International”, I am realizing that each page really represents the the owner of the page more than the group. All three pages love dogs, have good information on them and are involved in the showing of American Kennel Club registered dogs. But yet, all three are so very different.
DownEast Portuguese Water Dogs is mostly involved with breeding and showing of their dogs in many different categories. Obedience, rally, conformation and many things that I know nothing about. I joined this group because I love both the managers of the group. They are experienced, they love their dogs, they are careful about where they place their puppies and they work with them in all sorts of ways. I don’t have a Portuguese Water Dog so I’m somewhat confused as to why anyone would want to go out on a boat and throw orange things at the dogs. Actually, I can’t even swim. Perhaps they could start a life saving training program for them. Maybe there is one already! However, what I do notice is that everyone in this group is totally involved with their dogs. None are chained to doghouses and all are worked with and loved and watch TV on the couch with their owners. These are people that love their dogs and want them to excel in what they were bred for. The people that are involved and communicate with each other in this group are not Presidents that bought a PWD just to be a family member taken care of by an employee. This is a group that is serious about their dogs and I applaud them.
Dunham Lake Australian Terriers is a group that is more social. Although there are many “show” people that contribute, there are more “pet” people. The pictures are more from proud parents and if you are in the group you better darn well “like” the pictures of some of the homeliest Australian Terriers that you have ever seen. Since many of the people don’t know everything about the health and care of dogs and many of the people actually DO know much about the care and health of the dogs intelligent questions are asked and people that have been through the same problems or have read something about the problems are more than willing to share the information that they have so that the answer seeker can have some help in solving the problems. Not all people know that their Vet is trying to help but does not know everything and hints and suggestions from the group that are passed to their Vets can help a great deal. There is a lot of love in this group also. When someone’s dog passes that we have seen pictures and heard stories about for years passes, it hurts us all. When someone is having personal problems and shares them with the group, again we give advice and encouragement. When someone shares that they are having a litter or going to a dog show we all share the excitement and thrill of new puppies or a nice win. (or even a “no” win but a great effort and performance).
Australian Terrier International is a group that has been needed for years. I do have and love the Australian Terrier because I think they like all four feet on the ground (or in the ground) just as I do my two feet. None of this diving off piers into ice cold water to pick up an orange thing. Because the Australian Terrier is not one of the very popular dogs there is a small gene pool. Combining this gene pool CAREFULLY with European, Russian, Australian, etc. gene pools perhaps we can get back to healthier dogs. When I bred Aussies 25 years ago, no one was willing to fess up to the problems in their lines (what, start over?) and artificial insemination was not common and was very expensive. 25 years later I come back to the breed with the thought of breeding again and I see HUGE Aussies with the same problems only with a bit more confessing going on. The question is whether we are going to combine the gene pools and have the world’s Aussies have health problems or are we going to combine the gene pool and cull out the health problems. I pray that it is the later. There are some absolutely gorgeous Aussies out there (with health problems) and unfortunately, because people want to win at dog shows, the don’t care as long as they get the ribbon.
Australian Terrier International (ATI) is a way to get in touch with people worldwide and listen to their stories and the health problems with their pet dogs so that you can avoid those breeders that have the health problems. Again, unfortunately, you rarely hear of health problems in the show dogs. Although we need the judges to tell us whether we are “kennel blind”, the judges can be persuaded just as politicians to choose an unhealthy (or just plain ugly) dog and can also just not know of the health problems of the dog they choose.
At the moment, I have an Australian Terrier bitch that is way over the standard size but she is healthy, she has the best head I have ever seen, the largest ears, the best front and rear and her tail has not been docked. I have had other Aussies that were beautiful and then had a nightmare litter. So who do I choose? The one I have and breed her to a smaller, healthy dog. It has always been a rule of mine to have a Championship on any dog I breed so that I know that a third party has looked at them and approved them. I now believe that it is frosting on the cake to have a Championship. I just want them healthy. To me, at this time, this is the most important issue because I love the breed.
So, going back to Facebook, I truly believe that the groups that are on Facebook are what the owners want. I give credit to all three of those owners. They keep in touch and read the postings so that they can keep troublemakers out of the groups, they join in with their knowledge, and for whatever reasons, they are the ones responsible for making those groups successful and my hat is off to them. Thank you, you three!

Ahhhhhhhh!

Oh My

Please everyone; take a deap (ha, ha, I like that spelling. I must have been thinking of Johnny Dep). Let’s start over; take a deep breath, relax and then exhale toward Wolcott New York because I am about to go insane. My worry stone has imprints in it from rubbing it so much, I’m out of Lorazipam and now have even MORE wrinkles on my forehead. Too much is happening too fast and of course with me there is always a wee little glitch in everything. Not too bad this time but always a wee glitch.
As I’ve told you, there are probably about 7 towns in this county but it is amazing how roads compare from location to location. I grew up here and lived here until around 21 and I would say that I knew where all the towns were and how to get to them and even what shortcuts. They were all two-lane highways, mostly countryside. All were pretty much straight and perpendicular to each other. So I moved to Los Angeles and refused to drive. I’m sure you have seen on television what the highways are like. Once you are in a lane, you stay in that lane and you move at about 75 miles per hour. Too bad if you get a flat tire. Actually, Los Angeles is a bit like Boston.

So I move to Maine and it takes a few years to not get lost all the time. You get used to the fact that the roads are arcs and circles going around rocks and trees and up and down hills and that everyone drives in the middle of the road because for some reason the roads are made with a hill in the middle (to have the water run off?) but people travel pretty much at a reasonable speed. Just watch out for turkeys and cows crossing the road.
Then I move back to the exact same place I started out from. Same roads. Same towns. Same countryside with straight and perpendicular roads only now everyone is is a BIG hurry. And, I keep getting lost! Trees are larger or missing completely. New houses have been built, old ones painted, curves straightened out. Point is you plan a time limit to get somewhere and are always late! I know where I am but I don’t know how to get there! You get halfway there and you wonder how the heck you got to that place and why you are going in that direction. So, guess who was late for jury duty (all though, just in time to have my name called to be interviewed). Then I ask to affirm rather than swear and they start asking all these questions that don’t make any sense. And, you have to tell all this personal information and everyone can hear it. Jeeze, even my Dentist was there! The limit was when the attorney stated “now remember, this trial is just for rape, not forcible rape. We are not judging if the rape was forced”. I wait for one of the pod people in the courtroom to say something. Not a thing! So I say “excuse me but how could you consider it rape if it wasn’t forced?” All hell breaks loose, everyone in the courtroom starts laughing and rolling on the floor. When things calm down the Judge tells me that I am not to ask the attorney questions, I am to ask the Judge questions. Anyway, I wasn’t chosen so that’s over with.
Then at 7:30 is the Town Supervisors Meeting. Another Lorazipam. Big mistake because it was a very, very long boring meeting mostly about hiring someone to cut the weeds in the bay this summer, buying a new truck and which account to take the money out for each. Finally, at the end it was the unanimous decision to hire me as the Town Historian. HOORAY!!!!! And, to make it even better, I’ll make $.69 per hour!!! I was elated but didn’t have a hard time going to sleep.
This morning first thing I had to go into the town hall with my social security card and my driver’s license. Driver’s license – no problem but the last time I saw my SS card was years ago when Paul’s bank that employed him was purchased by a company in India and there was a chance that he would have to go over there for a couple of weeks and I was darned if I wasn’t going over with him. So I got the SS cards, the Birth Certificates (which took a few weeks for me because I was born at a Military Base) and the questionnaires together, clipped them and put them on his desk for when he had a chance to go with me to get our pictures for our passports. Of course, Paul didn’t even remember India much less where the folder was. Now, his office and the upstairs bathroom which are his are not entered by me unless there is an emergency. He puts his dirty clothes in a basket by the door, I plug my nose, reach in to get them and quickly close the door and that’s it. So, no SS card. I took the piece of paper that your SS card is ripped from and my letter from the SS with what I will be getting which luckily had my number on it into the town hall and they took it. For now. And that doesn’t help with our birth certificates.
Then since my Mother had a stint inserted last week I went over to see her for a while and my whole day is shot.
I have homework to do on a web course that I am taking that is due soon.
Saturday my daughter is taking us to dinner for our anniversary and we are going shopping.
Sunday I’m going with a friend to see Hamlet.
Next Sunday is a Handling Seminar that is about 3 hours away.
Remember that this is an Agraphobic speaking that never leaves the house. SEND CALM PLEASE!!!

Breeders Choice or Breeders NoChoice…What a Choice!

I have joined a new group on Facebook which is called Breeders Choice. I am interested in anything regarding Australian Terriers (almost) and I already know most of the people that are in the group and also know that they are a wonderful group of people. This is the nice thing about Facebook. If you don’t like a person you can just “zap” them and they no longer exist for you, you don’t have to worry how they are going to take things or hear their opinions. I do worry how my friends take things I say and I do listen to their opinions but luckily, since they are my friends, their opinions are usually quite similar to mine.
If I understand correctly, this group is mostly concerned with being able to show their dogs in AKC events without having to surgically alter their tails or remove their dewclaws. According to the Australian Terrier Club of America you cannot do this without getting penalized. Which means, in effect, that an undocked dog can be as good as a docked dog and lose just because it is docked.
The American Kennel Club consists of many breed clubs. Each breed that is shown and is recognized by the AKC had a club which developed a “standard” for their breed and which had the AKC approve that standard. It actually is quite a hard task and big deal to get a breed accepted into the AKC and to develop a standard that the entire (or at least the majority) of the breed club approves and that is then approved by the AKC. Sometimes it takes years and years because when starting to be recognized by the AKC it is hard to have all the dogs of that breed look alike. For instance, in the southeast they may have broader shoulders and in the north east they may have longer hair and in the Midwest they may have flatter feet, etc. etc. etc. and the people of the club must all come together and decide which characteristic is best for the dogs to be able to perform their reasons for being. Most of these standards were developed years ago when the dogs worked for a living. I’m not saying that there are not any more dogs that work for a living but the standard states what their purpose was/is. I just watched a special on TV about Siberian trappers and they actually rely on their dogs to keep them alive in the wilderness at times.
Most standards, though, are obsolete because of changing times (such as real fox hunting). Still, in order to keep the breeds as close to their purpose as possible, the standard is used by breeders when they or AKC judges evaluate their dogs and their dogs are bred in accordance with and try to get closer to that one perfect dog that absolutely matches the standard. However, in getting a shorter back, for instance, you may breed with a shorter backed dog but that dog has longer legs so you end up with a shorter back but too long legs! Very frustrating.
Now we get to “Breeder’s Choice”. I believe that what the Facebook group wants is just to be able to let their dog’s tails and dewclaws be natural and to not be penalized in the show ring by the judges or their fellow exhibitors that are judging the dogs. This is an excellent start in having the people in the breed club realize that there is nothing wrong with having a natural tail – it is just a deviation from the standard at the moment and MAYBE, our group hopes, will be the standard. The more people that want that to be, the more chance that there will be that the Australian Terrier Club of America will put forth an effort to change their standard and to get the changes approved by the American Kennel Club. After all, docked tails are outlawed in Europe already.
However, where does it stop? Breeders Choice. Does this mean that if some breeders prefer their Australian Terrier’s color to have white in it that they should be able to have white in their coats? I don’t think so but our group really doesn’t specify which choice. Any choice? I, personally, think that the group should be named Breeders Advocating for Natural Tails and Dew Claws because I, for one, would not like to see an Australian Terrier with white spots or five legs or two tails. Although, if one of those things got rid of all the health problems that are in Aussies I would take it.
I am a very literal person and tend to get everything all convoluted because I take things so literally. I qualify everything I say. If asked a question, I answer it with “well if….but then if…, etc” so I’m having a problem with our group’s name I guess. I don’t want Breeder’s Choice. I don’t think that each Breeder should have a choice. I think that a movement should be made to talk with the parent club and discussions should be had with the members and non-members of the parent club and then the whole kit and caboodle should get together and agree. I think it is time for a change on this issue but I’m not going to get into a discussion THIS TIME about the ATCA and the people who control it. I’m sure many Australian Terrier people already know how I feel about the “powers that be”.
My thoughts, convoluted or not do not lie in the hands of PETA or HSUS. They belong in the hands of me and I would much rather see the parent clubs change their thinking than see either of those two groups lobby and make another law for us to follow or what else will come afterward?. Oh dear, Breeder’s Choice? I’m so glad that I’m not a breeder right now.
Have a wonderful 2014!!!

DISTRACTED AKC JUDGES

Today, I feel like ranting and raving about the AKC in general. Now that I have caught up with everything and am ready for Christmas I can concentrate on something that I truly love and that something is dogs. In 1984 I obtained my first pedigree dog (or he obtained me) by me feeling sorry for him and stealing him from the neighbor. I thought he was a large Yorkshire Terrier and kept waiting for his hair to grow but it never did. I then found out he was an Australian Terrier (who ever heard of an Australian Terrier?) while looking through a dog book and finding a picture of Robert and J.F. Kennedy playing with one when they were children. He was the King of the Block until I got him at which time I had him get a vasectomy. Yes, a vasectomy, because I still wanted him to think he was “king of the block” even though he was on the end of the leash after I got him.
I decided he needed company so after doing A LOT of research I found a breeder who was having puppies and purchased a female “not for showing”. Then I started taking her to obedience classes and hey, as long as I was there, conformation and showing classes (much to the Breeders embarrassment). The first show she went to, we walked up to the Judge and she rolled over on her back to have her tummy rubbed. Needless to say, although the Judge was very nice by asking if this was our first show, Lucy didn’t come in first. Eventually, Lucy got her Championships in both conformation (beauty) and obedience but I have to admit that it took a lot of money and time to do it.
Meanwhile another Breeder must have either felt sorry for me (there were some tears when the Judge didn’t even look at her) and said she would get me a good puppy if I wanted. So, I got the pick of a wonderful litter of beautiful puppies. This one had the right attitude for showing. Perhaps he had a little too much of the right attitude because when he would be posing for the win he would also be ripping the ribbons from the Judge’s hand and knocking over the sign and I got blisters on my hand so I hired a handler. But, he was beautiful and he got a Best in Show and was invited to Eukanuba and was in the top 10 and went to Westminster twice. (All stories in themselves).
After obtaining some more females and finishing them (getting their Championships) I decided to become a breeder and did well for several litters but, as usual, disaster struck and I had a litter of puppies that I don’t even want to think about. Two survived but I spayed and placed the females and neutered my male. My last show dog was in 2005 and he obtained his championship when less than one year but had to be euthanized at the age of 2 years. That was it. The gene pool in Australian Terriers was too small and I was not getting any straight answers (or any answers at all) from other Australian Terrier breeders (even those belonging to the Australian Terrier Club of America) so why would I want to repeat my mistakes and go through that again? My thoughts were that perhaps other breeders had had litters like mine and since the malformations were obvious when the pups were born they just disposed of the pups and said they had small litters. Why would they want to give their breeding programs a bad name? Especially when they had been working on them for years and years?
Knowing how wonderful the Australian Terrier breed was I just couldn’t keep away from them and I found a couple of groups on Facebook that had them and kept talking about them and then there were the Breeders on them that were having puppies and people were getting puppies and I was just dying! So I decided on a breeder and told her I would like a show pup in 2015 but would like it to be a pup whose parents were from out of the United States. No problem. Then a Breeder in Sweden had a litter and I couldn’t stand it so I asked for a pup and she said yes! But, I got strong again and cancelled the order and told her I couldn’t get one until 2015. This past July a litter was born that was mostly from out of the US and my Karla is sitting beside me now. See how strong I am?
Now comes the ranting and raving:
When you show a dog you try to show one that is as close to the standard as possible. A standard is a description made by the individual breed clubs of the perfect dog, in this case made by the Australian Terrier Club of America. This standard is to be read by the judges of the American Kennel Club and learned by heart and who are then allowed to judge the Australian Terrier. Our standard has explicit descriptions of all of the dogs parts, how they move, how they are put together and their personalities. Not only do they have descriptions but they specify what deviations from the standard are more important than others. They tell you how the Australian Terrier should be and in that description certain things are to be PENALIZED, such as “in any color, white markings on the chest or feet are to be penalized. In other words, if you take a dog in the ring with other dogs and your dog has white it can still win but the other dogs would have to be much worse than yours.
WORSE than penalized is a FAULT, such as light colored or protruding eyes, cobbiness, too long in loin, straight, loose and loaded shoulders, down on pasters, lack of muscular development or excessive muscularity, all black body coat in the adult dog, tan smut in the blue portion of the coat or dark smut in sandy/red coated dogs, shyness or aggressiveness toward people. A FAULT is worse than a penalization and in my opinion you shouldn’t even embarrass yourself by bringing a dog with a fault into the ring and wasting the Judge’s time with it.
Karla has a tail. A beautiful wagging, just the right length with just the right amount of hair and just the right color of a tail. However, Australian Terrier tails are described as docked. It is not something to be penalized and it is not a fault but it is in the description so if I were to take Karla into the ring against two other dogs and they were all the same, Karla would lose because of her tail. If she was a bit better then she would win regardless of the tail.
In Europe it is illegal to dock the tail of a dog. You cannot show them if they have docked tails I believe (I’m not sure about this). So if I were to purchase a dog from Europe it would have to be at least eight weeks old and would still have a tail when it got over her. At this time I would consider that tail to definitely be a part of the spine and I would NOT dock it and I would look down on any veterinary that would dock it for me. The argument that tails get injured is hogwash. I suppose if a leg got hurt you would amputate it. Same with a tail. But remove it for no reason except that some person thinks it looks better shorter? The same with ears. Actually I like the looks of people with smaller ears so I think they should go to the doctor and get their ears docked please so that I don’t have to look at big ears.
Here we go: In the last Australian Club of America (ATCA) newsletter under “Corresponding & Recording Secretary Reports” it was stated that a letter from a Judge (I assume it was an AKC Judge) was received as follows: I am a newly approved terrier group judge. Like all judges (I certainly hope) I want to do what the parent clubs feel is right for their breed. I recently had an entry of 5 at an all breed show. Several had undocked tails which I found to be a terrible distraction to proper outline. None of these dogs possessed what I would call a “distinct keel” called for in your standard. I also judge dachshunds, and maybe I am expecting too much. However a hollow front is offensive to me in your breed.
I did not place the Aussie in my group simply because of the lack of a “distinct keep”. I felt the lack of a keel impacted the right outline and front assemble. Please help me with both the tail and the keep issues. I would like to have parent club understanding on these issues. I have placed a fine specimen of your breed group 2 at least twice recently. Thank you.

It was reported that the Judge’s Education Chair responded describing again for the Judge the correct front assembly for the Australian Terrier and quoting additional references regarding the same and then requoting the standard that states that the tail should be docked.
Had I been Corresponding Secretary of the ATCA I would have responded to the Judge that perhaps before he/she be allowed to judge, he/she should aquaint him/herself with the breed standards that he/she will be judging. I would ask how this person got a license to judge when he/she could be so distracted by a tail. Does this judge also get distracted by the person holding the lead of the dog? Or, perhaps, what that person is wearing? I know that these things do happen and it is VERY discouraging to the owner of the dog that has put time and money into training and transporting their dog to the show. The dog is in the ring for only a few minutes and receives (we hope) even less time of the judge’s attention. It is unfortunate that that time is spent not looking at the dog but being distracted by a tail, or by a nice leash or by a spectator waving their arm.
However, luckily, I will never be the Corresponding Secretary of the ATCA (more about that later perhaps), because if I were, there would be a mass mailing to all judges stating that they should try to remember that all dogs should have tails, eyes, ears, noses and at the very least….kisses!

KarlaPoop11-13 (2)

Nothing

So many things to think about as to reasons so many people in the North East U.S. are somewhat racial and why my tolerance level is getting lower and lower…like, the longer I am away from Southern California, the less I can tolerate real Mexican food. It’s just too darn hot! The older and less agile I get the less I like rap. Another reason is that I’m the person that if a sales person approaches me without me asking for something, I leave. And because of the bass in this music and because the people who play it assume that everyone likes it they force me to listen to it when they drive by. Even in the winter, with the storm windows on and the wind blowing. I’m becoming less patient as I age and I can’t listen to the complaints people are making about the economy, the weather, the roads and on and on and on are Obama’s fault. What? Is he God now or something? I find myself wanting to slug people saying “Oh! Another dog to show. It must be so nice to have so much money” as they drive by in their new cars with their trailers loaded with toys of all kinds or people saying “well the reason you can’t sell your house is because you over paid for it in the first place”. Why do I have to explain that we are not handy people and this house was in excellent condition and would only have optional projects to spend money on, that the acreage was what we needed for the horses and the barn was in perfect condition.

Good things that other people in my life and I feel? Yes there are some! I LOVE Mexican refried beans, burritos, rice, and guacamole that isn’t hot. I love gospel, blues, alternative and classical music that I choose and play for myself and no one else. There were only two choices for the presidential race and of course, neither of the choices were telling the truth or the wouldn’t have made it that far. At least one had a brain. I ADORE my new puppy whether I show her or not. I know exactly how big she will be when she grows up, the breeder sends me emails when it is time for her shots and you get what you pay for. (FYI I have three rescues also, one of which cost much more in the long run than this one). Our house is perfect for us with the updates we have made. We have lived her for seven years and have not had to fix anything other than the water heater which just went and we don’t have the horses any more so we could divide the lot if we wish.

So, are things bad? No, just exciting as in:

Karla’s first trip to the Vet:

Popped her into the Air Pod dog crate which I used on the plane and converts to a car traveler. No fuss, no muss. She was great all the way to the Vet’s which was about 25 minutes. I love that Air Pod, it flattens down to nothing has pockets and fleece that comes out to wash and has straps for seat belts. I recommend it highly for travel. I wouldn’t use it as a crate in the house though because it’s too small.

When we got there she was great. We went inside and there were cats and people (no dogs) and I’m not worried about her top line any more. She was gorgeous. The ear is a problem and I will tape it but Now that I’ve seen her natural alert pose, I think she is beautiful. Her rear may correct itself but I don’t think that it is so bad that I can’t correct it by grooming. She looked striking but it was kind of funny when you looked at that stance and then the ear flopping. LOL

Same Vet Practice as I took Spider and Cady but a different Vet. Her smug attitude really put me on the defense, also the technician. The Tech came in first and said OK, check up, last of the puppy shots and rabies, right. I said no rabies and no lepto. She said “well, she has to have rabies” and I said “not today with the rest of these shots thank you” and she said the Vet will be with you in a moment with her brows raised. Vet comes in (very matronly younger woman) and said – “So, it’s a 5 way and rabies right”. “We don’t give lepto unless a client asks. I told her “good for the lepto but NO rabies at this time” She started defending her position and I said “NO rabies at this time. This doesn’t mean I won’t get a rabies because I will, but not at this time.” She had a really nasty smile. Then I said that I wanted the shots that didn’t have the mercury in them. Another nice smile and “that would be this one”.

You would have thought Karla had just had her leg cut off. What a wuss! Was she like that with you? Or didn’t the Vet know how to give a shot slow and easy? Yipes, and we had the microchip to go yet. Karla was even worse for that and whined all the way home. I surprised she didn’t try to faint on the table.

Then I asked the Vet if she could tape up the ear for me. And she said (which I already knew) we don’t dock tails or ears in NY state. I told her that was good and neither did I but could she TAPE the ears. She gave me another pained look and said they didn’t have the equipment because they don’t dock. I said “right-o”. Then I asked for a prescription for the heartworm and she said that they sold it cheaper than online and they had online services. So, I said “fine, no prescription”. The other Vet there had given me a prescription for Spider’s thyroid no problem. Then they noticed all the bleeding from Karla from her microchip and were wiping it up like I didn’t see. I’ll be surprised if the thing didn’t come out with the blood. That has NEVER happened to me before.

Then back to the counter but Karla was still wagging her tail (and she has a very nice one by the way. I didn’t notice the way it was set but she has a nice moderate neck. Much longer and nicer than Beamer”s but certainly not as long as ? (Woody).

Up to the counter, mortgaged my car while Karla planted one on their rug naturally. I almost stepped on it and I think she did that on purpose. Luckily, they are solid now.

Going to the car my hands are full of receipt, sample packages, tag, purse and Karla and the plastic snap on Karla’s collar undid. I dropped everything on the pavement and dove for her. Got her, no problem except my heart then went back, got my stuff on the ground, drove home with no problem, went inside, locked door and here I sit hoping not to have to go anywhere for the next month.

Do We Have To Be Crazy?

I actually think that I have made a new human friend. You may not believe how important this is to me because I very rarely go out of the house. The last time I went out of the house was yesterday when I called my Mother and asked her if she would like some scalloped potatoes and the said “yes”. So, I decided to do all my errands at once. I needed a piece of plastic to go over my quilt and rack because my Husband doesn’t realize that it isn’t a table; so hardware was #l. Of course Jim Beam at the liquor store was #2, prescription pick up at Rite Aid was #3, Mom was #4 and then the blissful drive back home.
Well, I’m not in the habit of stopping at the hardware and I multitask way, way too much and I had Karla to show her off to my mother so I completely forgot the plastic. (Next time). Then to the liquor store for the JB and I could take Karla out for that one because they have a miniature Terrier and actually know what an Australian Terrier is. We chatted for a while and I forced Karla back into the airpod carrier, strapped her to the seatbelt, got in, inserted keys, started car and couldn’t get it out of park. For 15 minutes I tried. My arm actually got sore. So, back it was into the liquor store to ask if I could use their phone. “sure”, so I called Paul, he answered and said he would be right there with the Jeep. Five minutes later they got a call for me and it ws Paul asking where the key dish was. Well I had just cleaned and rearranged for company so how was I supposed to know? It was close so he said he would walk. However he did find the keys.
This was good because there was a very old tramp that fell in love with Karla and was cornering me into two buildings.

"Ha Ha, I'm sleeping on the coooouuuuch!

“Ha Ha, I’m sleeping on the coooouuuuch!


Paul did find the keys on the other table. duh! and started my car with the first try which really really made me angry. This happens all the time in front of the liquor store! Do you know how embarrassing this is?
Well, on to the Rite Aid which went without a hitch although I did remember that I had forgotten to bring the scalloped potatoes. Home again and on to Moms. Food delivered and home to collapse. And you wonder why I don’t leave the house!
Of course, even when I stay in the yard things strange happen. One time I was chasing papers in the spring and putting them in a plastic bag and there was a plastic bottle in the ditch and one of our wastecans that had blown down the hill. I gently stepped into the ditch and went to my waist. I had purchased hip waders for this special purpose but I guess I should have purchased a boat. The hip waders filled with cold, cold water and I couldn’t get my feet out of them because of the suction.. Also I was sinking further and further. Well, I thought about it after a while and realized that no one knew I was there and no rescue was going to happen, I leaned over the trash barrel like it was a horse and slipped out of my boots. Safe! I could have died out there and Paul would never have knonw.
Anyway, back to current fall weather which is actually beautiful this year (late or not) I have decided that this year I don’t need to rake or carry wicker furniture or do anything at all except follow Karla around the house to take things out of her mouth. Paul and I looked at each other and he asked me if maybe we were getting too old to have an aussie puppy. Unfortunately, I told him that she was absolutely perfect and would get her Championship in one show and I was going to breed her when she is three and I was sure she would have at least 20 puppies.
Today, now that I have semi-recuperated from picking her up in WI, I actually go back to two of my computer classes. One is about preserving materials and the other is called “canine thereogenealogy”, which may give you a clue as to how I am doing. Can they not speak in laywoman’s terms or at least have two different classes? One for Vets and mds and one for dummies? I also got a corner of my computer desk cleared.
Actually all I want to do is work on my vintage handkerchief quilt. I saw a BEAUTIFUL one today but it was machine stitch. This means that my hand-stitched one will take much longer. Also, did I tell you I have a new cell phone? Now if I can only figure out how to get my 69 messages from it..
Another thing that is a problem this week is that I have familiar/essential tremor (although I don’t look like Katheryn Hepburn, and I went to a neurologist because I thought it was Parkinsons. He said that it was tremor and put me on phenobarbital and that I may have some side effects in the beginning. I looked it up between naps and realized that one was sleepiness and another was seeing crosseyed so pray for this spellchecker to work.
Since my hubby is figuring out his new Nikkow 7100 I don’t have any pictures but you wait. You will be so sick of Karla that you will love her as much as me!
Noodles!