Thursday, May 31, 2012

Dog (less) Days

"The dogs are fine.  They went swimming this morning, and had elk and eggs for breakfast."

Even leaving our dogs for a few days is hard.  Luckily, my bff in the mountains, Mandi, rivals my love for animals and usually watches our two black mutts for us.  She has two of her own and her and her boyfriend are such troopers when it comes time to tolerate four dogs for a week.  We watch their dogs also, and while it is always fun, it is always chaotic.  Ernie Banks, a chihuahua mix and Chester, an English pointer get along famously with our dogs.  EB and Hannah could play all day long if you let them.

Honestly, I was more worried about the sanity of Mandi and her boyfriend Cory when we left our dogs with them, but it is still always so diffucult to leave our two mutts for very long.  When Mandi texted me this weekend (a few days into our trip) that the dogs had already been swimming at the dog park, were given elk and eggs for breakfast, and were now sleeping on the couch all my irrational fears switched from Hannah and Titan missing us to a worry that they might never want to come home!  All elk aside, they were so excited to see us when we picked them up last night.  Vacation was amazing and so-so-needed but I am so happy to be back at home in the Vail Valley with our dogs!

Hannah, Titan, Ernie Bank and Chester
All four dogs, and all four humans enjoying the Fat Tuesday parade and concert in Vail this winter.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Puppy Fostering

I have not had puppies for a long time.  The last puppy I had in my own care for an extended amount of time 10th grade when my parents brought a Bernese Mountain Dog home.  My mom had wanted a Berner ever since she lived in Vail, but we always ended up with strays and rescues.  When our older dog died in my early High School years, they decided to compromise by getting a rescue (older BC mix) and a puppy Berner.

This brother and sister pair, named Bramble and Sitka, were coming from Texas on a transport with a wonderful man by the name of Doug.  He has an air conditioned Stock trailer, and this time around he had 40+ dogs.  There was a family from down-valley who was ready to foster-to-adopt these two, but at the last minute they decided they really wanted to see them before committing so I got asked to pick them up.  Two puppies, and only for a few easy and fun it sounded!

Doug was supposed to arrive in Denver around 4, and be up to the Vail Valley around 6.  Over the course of the drive, he got delayed having to walk so many dogs and did not end up arriving until 11:30 at night.  Doug was so tired he could barely talk, and I had to turn on my headlights on to shine some light on the trailer and make sure I had the right dogs!  I verified the names on their collars, but was still a little unsure if they were really puppies or tiny goats as they smelled EXACTLY like a petting zoo.  Fritz woke up a little bewildered at the racket that bathing two small, furry and unwilling creatures can create.  By 12:40 AM both puppies were clean, put to bed in a crate next to my bed, and I was exhausted.

The next day the family came over to the house to meet the duo.  They have a college-aged son who is home for the summer, and is so excited to help take care of them.  Bramble and Sitka put on quite the show, climbing in their laps and playing with a ripped-up tennis ball.  They did great just hanging around in the yard, chasing after my two dogs.  It ended up being a blast but everything I had been saying to Fritz all these years about how much work puppies were was totally confirmed!  They ended up taking them home that night!  

Friday, May 18, 2012

Foster Dog #1

I can't imagine a foster being much easier than Sierra.  Maybe she knew she was our first, and went easy on us.  Sierra, or Victoria as she was previously known came from a animal shelter in Little Rock, Arkansas and was the Director's favorite.  When adoptions got pretty slow, they decided to send her out to Colorado through Mountain Dog Rescue!  

I picked her up in Denver off transport with two Sprinter vans full of dogs.  When the guy in charge handed her to me, she instantly melted into my arms leaving me covered in huge patches of soft blonde fur.    After a tangle with the dog brush in the parking lot, and a romp in the Boulder Foothills dog park with friends Patty and Kyle we headed back to the mountains to settle in.....

Which took about 5 minutes.    She slept through the night, was a total sweetheart and played famously with our two dogs.  

One week later she went to a lovely couple who live at 10,000 feet with another husky mix in need of a play-mate.  They came over to meet her, took her to a park for a little bit, and when I came back outside had her loaded up in to the car already.  I not surprisingly shed a few tears, and I think Fritz was sad too.  After a few days with her they decided to make it permanent, and renamed her Katy.  My first foster and first success couldn't have made me happier!

Sierra at home, in the backyard, and playing with Hannah and Titan.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Two Black Mutts

Animals have been a way of life in my family.  Cats, dogs, horses, and even a rabbit somehow weaseled their way into our lives and never left, and strategically at that.  I think at some point word on the street got out that living at the Buse house was a pretty sweet gig.  My mom has always been this way, and whether through genetics or environment has passed this insatiable desire to help animals on to me.  It followed me to college (stories for another time), and eventually to Vail where I adopted my first dog

Every single animal that shared our home
 was given love, shelter and stability until the day that they died.  Even the evil rabbit, who drew blood from my ankles on several occasions, died with a two-story cage and a lengthy vet bill from trying to save him.

My wonderful fiance, Fritz, has accepted his fate with a life full of animals.  We now have two black mutts, who are goofy, loving, and of course trying at times.  Hannah, the first picture is some sort of setter/retriever mix.  She is a bit too smart for her own good and crazy athletic.  Titan, the second picture, kind of reminds me of a panda bear.  Not the brightest crayon in the box, but you wont find a more affectionate dog on the planet. The four of us live as much of life outside as possible from hiking, to biking, camping, and swimming.  Every day is an adventure in one way or another!

Monday, May 14, 2012

One post down.

I have decided to start a blog.  This my first blog post.  

Whether many people read this or no eyes see it but my own I came to the conclusion to start blogging for a couple of reasons:
  • I want to document the many notable moments that happen in relation to my life with animals (at least moments I find notable).
  • Helping animals is one of my biggest passions.  Life of late has provided more opportunities to exercise this passion, which leaves more thoughts in my head than I know what to do with.
  • My writing muscles are out of shape and they need a work-out.

I conclude with an image of myself, my dogs and one of my favorite places in the Vail Valley - Beaver Lake.