Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Shepherd X

This is my latest portrait I painted for a client.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Dog Park Fun???

Zack was just visiting some dogs at the dog park

when the next minute the white dog turned on him and he was running for his life!!!!!

I was about to have a coronary and put the camera down and started screaming at the dog when the owner of the white dog called it off and thank god it listened and immediately ran back to her leaving Zacky unscathed - Phew!!!!!!! Blimy, I don't think I will be going to the dog park for the next little while as I don't think my nerves can take it. Next time if that happens I think the EMS will have to get the paddles out and restart my heart!!!

Poor Zacky he was only trying to have some fun.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Crazy Sunday!!!

Took Zack for a lovely walk this morning knowing that there was a wind warning out but at 10 a.m. the wind had not picked up and we had a great time with my friend Liz and her little ShihTzu, Zoe. About 10 minutes after we got home the wind gusts began and haven't stopped. It has been 120km an hour winds which are Category 1 Hurricane. There were all sorts of buildings damaged, trees down, trucks blown off the highways and warnings all over the TV and radio to stay indoors as it was too dangerous to really be out. Downtown Calgary (a big city about 2 hours from Lethbridge) was actually closed downtown because windows from the skyscrapers had blown out and debris was everywhere - very dangerous. The winds there were 149km per hour. We normally get strong winds here but this is even extreme for us.

Then at about 4 pm this afternoon a huge grassfire started up just west of Lethbridge and is out of control as it is being fuelled by the strong winds. It has been very scary to say the least - there was so much smoke. We are lucky to be at the opposite end of the west side from where the fire is and don't think we are in any immediate danger but there are roads closed, and portions of the west side are on stand by to evacuate and others already evacuated as the fire is heading for the houses. I hope everyone gets out who needs to and takes there beloved pets with them!!!!

The wind is supposed to die down later this evening and hopefully the firefighters will be able to get the fires under control.

I will not be able to sleep very well tonight that's for sure.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Ball Within a Ball Within a Ball?

Zack was so funny the other day I think he gave up on trying to get the ball out of the ball by trying to put another one back in!!!!!!

Friday, November 25, 2011

The Mat

Sheer bliss for Zack & Asia.

Thursday, November 24, 2011


Yesterday I took Zack out twice as his odd hop now seems to be better.

First thing in the morning Zack and I walked with Paisley and Constance and the wind was not too bad so actually the walk was nice. In the evening was my scheduled run session. The wind by then was blowing 100km an hour - like gale force. I really didn't want to go out in it and thought the treadmill looked way better but my friend said come on we will just stay out of the wind. Yeah right.

So I got ready, got Zack's running leash round my waist and off we went. OMG, I struggle as it is with my learn to run program and when you are facing that wind I was gasping - it was bloody awful. I swear good job Zack was tethered to my waist as he probably would have lifted off in that wind. The last turn home we set off running again and finally the wind was behind us and what a difference we flew down the road and it felt way better.

Crikey never again am I running in that strong of a wind tho - I must have been completely doolally. When I got home I had a bloodshot eye - not sure whether it was the wind or complete lack of oxygen!!!! LOL

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

First Visit

Both Zack and I have a uniform we have to wear for our Therapy Dog Visits. Zack has a bandana and last week he did his first Therapy Dog visit at the Heritage Lodge to visit the seniors there. He did really well and I think enjoyed that he was centre of attention. He was so good with the seniors and definitely brightened up their evening. He got a couple of old ladies giggling in their chairs as he wouldn't stop wiggling his behind and he sat on the lap of another gentlemen licking his face all over - luckily he didn't mind a bit. What was really nice was that there was a little old lady in a wheelchair who we were told doesn't like dogs and thought they should be all outside on a farm. By the end of the visit she had crept over in her wheelchair, bent over and wouldn't stop petting Zack. He licked her ankle and she laughed. She was surprised by his wiry coat and started talking about the dogs she had in her life - it was so amazing how she came out of her shell.

It was a rewarding experience and Zack was great :). Maybe being a Therapy Dog is his calling.

Monday, November 21, 2011


Memories - then and now.....

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Lazy Saturday

Zack had a very lazy Saturday he didn't get to go out for his usual walk because of the cold and I am trying to rest him a bit because of his weird hop. I don't think he minded too much as every time I looked around he was either sprawled over the couch, on the mat in front of the fire or on our bed.

Zacky took advantage that Fat Cat is shaped like a pillow.

But I don't think she minded too much.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Friggin Cold

Woke up this morning to a bit more snow and it is -20 degrees with a wind chill of - 30 degrees. Absolutely bloody awful, it is definitely a shock to the system. Zack certainly didn't hang about in the back garden this morning he just did his business and was back within 10 seconds!!! I reckon that must be a record. When he did come back in from being out in the cold it set off his zoomies he started tearing round the house shaking the devil out of his toy, pouncing on fat cat trying to get her to move (no such luck LOL), the whole nine yards but as soon as I said the word "breaky" his madness stopped and he was soon chowing down.

I don't think we will be taking Zacky too far today it's a good time to keep him in I reckon I am sure he won't mind.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Holidays Over

I am back at work today but have so enjoyed having the extra time this past week to take Zack for romps in the fields during the day rather than the normal roadwork after work because it is now dark. I think Zack has enjoyed it too. Here are just a few pictures from our Tuesday afternoon walk

as usual he is always on the hunt

he didn't find a bunny but he found a stick

as soon as I went to get it off him

he took off!!!!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Hop A Long

During our walk this morning with Paisley we noticed Zack was hopping along on his right hind leg on and off. He has occasionally done this since he was young and I have had his knee caps checked several times and have been advised they were just fine each time. It is weird as Zack is not lame, walks just fine, runs, jumps nothing seems to hurt, but he hops sporadically on that same leg only when we are out for a walk. It doesn't happen in the house. However today he was hopping more than usual so off we went to the vet again to make sure nothing else was going on. After a thorough exam Zack's knees were given the all clear but he was a little sore on the top of his right hind leg/ hip when she pushed he flinched. To cut a long story short Zack's vet thinks that he has a bit of an ache from where he had his bone marrow biopsy done when he was a sickly puppy (which thank god came back negative for leukaemia) she advised any time bones are messed with in any way it can cause aches in the future so she thinks that his odd hopping all this time and more today is from that. It certainly makes sense and the extra exercise he has been getting with me on holidays and the cold weather probably didn't help either - poor boy.

It is not serious but something we may have to live with and if it becomes really bad just give Zack some pain relief but for now just some R & R.

Oh No A Cold Front

The inevitable happened on Monday a cold front blew through, we had freezing temps, a skiff of snow and biting winds so it was time to bring out the winter woolies for our walk. Dam it.

Zack's new sweater is a little big but the next size down was too small and in any event it served the purpose and kept him warm and that's all that matters anyway I guess. This weekend we are supposed to get to a high of - 10 degrees and over night down to - 20 so I think winter has finally arrived.

Zack and I are now off for our morning walk with Paisley the Poodle and Constance from four doors down. It's about - 5 and windy right now so better bundle up again.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Popson Park - Back to the Car

On the way back to the car from the River I pulled out Zack's favourite toy, his little raspberry.

He was certainly ready for a game of fetch and was soon running back and forth

I had laid down on the ground to take some pictures of Zack playing fetch and while I was rolling around and making squeaky noises I heard "are you alright?". I turned and saw a couple looking down at me. I stood up quick, my face as red as a beet, and after they saw my camera and I explained myself we all laughed, but I am sure they thought I was having a seizure or something. Cor Blimey talk about embarrassing. I guess I better remember when we are at a public park there are people about!!!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Popson Park - The River

After Zack's earlier escapades with the dogs at Popson Park we continued with our walk down to the river passing some lovely gnarly trees on our way.

Once at the Oldman River Zack was in heaven

he scampered up and down the river banks for ages on the hunt to find little bunnies

then headed down to check out the River and all the smells along the shore

Luckily he didn't find anything dead or smelly to roll in this time. Phew.

Finally it was time to head back across the golden fields and make our way home.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Popson Park

This morning for Zack's walk I decided to take him somewhere different for a change. We went down to Popson Park in the river valley near where we live. It is truly beautiful down there at this time of year - everything is so golden.

We don't normally go down there because of the chance of running into a rattlesnake but this time of the year they are hibernating
and not out so it is good and safe.

After being on the trail for a while Zacky got mobbed by a pack of dogs - yep he is in the middle there - see his little leg. My heart sank for a split second

but all was fine as he soon popped out none the worse for wear

they actually were all lovely dogs and after a quick play session with the Golden Retriever

Zack came running back to me

and we continued on our walk down towards the river.

It's too bad there are not more little dogs at the dog parks as it seems Zack is always the smallest of the dogs I see and that is why we don't go too often as he has been bowled over too many times. Today however the dogs we met were fine and it was lovely to go somewhere different for a change.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Dodged Another Bullet

Last night there was a weather warning out for a winter storm with high winds, white out conditions and lots of snow so we were bracing for the worst this morning. So when I peeked out the window first thing to my surprise there was no snow or wind!!! There must have been a little rain but that was it. The forecast was wrong again!!!! Perfect.

With the grass in the garden being fresh and damp Zacky was full of spit and vinegar and he went totally bonkers with his balls and got the zoomies. It is unusual for this time of year to have the grass in the back garden so green as usually either the cold or snow has covered it up by now and turned it brown but I am not complaining it is lovely.

After his doolally session in the garden, I then I took Zack for my "run" (which is still a struggle but I am hanging in there) and then finished with a bit of a walk. He is now off with my hubby in the truck to get a Starbucks. Talk about the good life for Mr. Wiggles - but he is so worth it.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Time Off

Nothing much to say today other than I am off work and on holidays for a week!! Woo hoo.

I intend to spend extra time with Zacky and get in extra walks, paint, relax and just enjoy!!! I have been playing on the iMac and turned one of Zack's photos to black and white - not sure I like it but it is different and makes a change I guess.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

A Champion Lost

I couldn't believe it when I heard the news that Eric Lamaze's horse Hickstead died suddenly of a heart attack in the ring at the World Cup in Italy. It is very very sad.

I couldn't imagine seeing it happen live right in front of me but that is the way it happened to lots of poor people and Eric Lamaze - there are just no words. I go to show jumping events all the time and have never seen such a thing.

In September Pete and I were at Spruce Meadows in Calgary where Eric Lamaze and Hickstead jumped and won everything. I am glad I took these photos while we were there as he truly was a great horse in the show jumping world.

Hickstead was a World Champion and Olympic Champion and I am sure was a horse in a lifetime for Eric Lamaze. Rest In Peace Hickstead.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Making the Most of It

Luckily the snow storm forecast for last Friday didn't amount to anything except a little skiff which was great but we know we are on borrowed time before the weather changes so every day we are making the most of our walks while we can.
There is not much green grass left in the fields anymore it is mostly brown and Zack does "blend in" which can be a problem

but on the whole it has been a great Fall and we have had lots of great walks although Zacky always manages to have a good roll in stinky unmentionable wildlife deposits before I can get to him little bugger. LOL.

Monday, November 7, 2011


As Zack can't have rawhides or the like because of his iffy belly we give him these Nylabones. They look and feel like rock hard plastic to me and so unappealing but thank goodness Zacky loves them and he will knaw on the Nylabone for hours leaving pools of drool behind him and very wet whiskers.

When Zack was having a check up recently at the vets they asked if I gave him bones. I said "no" but I do give him Nylabones and then they showed me how great it had been working to knock off the tarter on his toofums. Zack's teeth were great and you could seriously see the tarter that had been scraped off!!! It's nice to come away from the vets with some good news for a change.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Flower Power

When the sun came out after a frosty couple of mornings Zacky was game for anything

He took great pleasure in running through my frozen flower bed and knocking off the dead flowers. The holly hocks were his favourite.

He would toss them around like a cat with a mouse and then eat it!!!!