Category Archives: Berners

3604 Days

The Unsinkable Molly Bonk RN CGC
The Unsinkable Molly Bonk RN CGC

Today, we took the longest drive with Molly. Today we put her to rest.

We’d been tackling structural problems with Molly for several months, and after many exams to see what could be going on, she stabilized. However, she started having other problems, and we started looking into what was join on.

On Friday, we took Molly into the vet, and had a specialist do a sonogram on her. The news wasn’t good. She had an inoperable tumor that was taking up half her bladder, along with creeping into other parts of her. Essentially, we were talking about days of time left before she would descend into a really painful life.

After talking with the vet Friday, we set an appointment for this afternoon to let her go, and avoid the pain and suffering that was just around the corner. By far, this was the hardest thing I’ve had to do since Dad died almost ten years ago.

So today, Becky and I took her to the vet, and sat with her while she slipped away. It really was as peaceful as the vet described, and she just slowly went to sleep on my foot, eventually leaving us.

This afternoon’s been really tough, with four fewer big paws stomping around the house. We know she’s better off though, as what was in front of her was miserable and agonizing.

There’s an old Swiss saying: “Three years a puppy, three years a good dog, three years an old dog. All else is a gift from God.” With Molly, we had all that, but for us, it was 3,604 days as a gift from God.

A New RN

Becky and Trulli's Scrumptious Bailiwick, RN, CGC
Becky and Trulli's Scrumptious Bailiwick, RN, CGC

Yesterday, Beck and Bailey went Purina to show for her third and final leg for Bailey’s Rally Novice. From what Becky described, Bailey’s performance wasn’t exactly stellar, but it was enough to get the needed leg to get Bailey’s RN title. In fact, Becky didn’t even go look at her score, thinking they’d missed the cut. That’ll teach her to doubt herself!

Becky told me that Bailey once again kept her nose on the ground once she got in the ring. That’s gonna be a challenge as Becky starts to work with Bailey on obedience and other titles. Knowing them, they’ll get through it, although it may take a trick or two.

They went back today, and Bailey scored much better, and got another ribbon for her work. Just a little insurance. 🙂

Congrats gals — hard work well rewarded!

Becky really liked this photo, and I do too. Instead of mugging for the camera, the photographer (not me) caught them in a very tender moment, Darla to Smudge. That’s what photography’s all about — not just documentation, but capturing the emotion of a moment. Way cool.

Bailey Graduates!

After many weeks of class, Bailey passed her CGC (Canine Good Citizen) test yesterday. She’s been in heat for the last two weeks, so she’s got mush for brains right now — I am really surprised that she was able to pass given her lack of attention span right now.

So now both her and Molly have their CGC’s. I’m betting Bailey adds an RN (Rally Novice) this year to follow in Molly’s pawsteps.

Congrats Bailey!

Farewell, Old Friend

This morning, I got a call from one of the Berner folks that one of my favorite dogs, Too-Morrow, had left us quietly in his sleep overnight.

Too was a really cool dog, and a gentle giant. He seemed to like everyone, but when I’d show up, he’d light up like I’d hung the Moon. He was massive, and when asked, would stand on his hind legs, put those big forepaws on my shoulders, and let me snuggle up. Those were great hugs. Because of the way To behaved around me, Sio always contended that Too had a “man crush” on me. Maybe so.

Over the years — we’ve known Too for as long as we’ve had Molly — we were fortunate enough to have Too over for some sleepover time. I also had all kinds of opportunities to photograph him just chilling out, as well as performing on the agility field. The photo to the left is my favorite image of him though.

Becky got to see him just ten days ago, and he seemed like his normal self. We got a call yesterday, though, that he’d been diagnosed with prostate problems, and in examining that, a nodule had been found in his chest. Kris (Too’s owner) was advised to take him home, and keep him comfortable. Of course, Kris was and is devastated, and rightfully so. This was so very sudden and unexpected.

Farewell, old friend. See ya on the Rainbow Bridge someday.

More Awards

Last week, I got a package that held a little surprise for me… two of my images from the BMDCA Speciality, and two 4th place ribbons! These images were from the “puppy” category and the “computer enhanced” category. I’d seen in the bulletins from the Specialty that I’d taken a couple of 4th places, but I wasn’t expecting ribbons. More stuff for the dog walls!

BMDCA Photo Contest

Coming up in May, the National Specialty for the Bernese Mountain Dog Club of America will be held in Wisconsin. Darla will be going, and taking at least one of the Berners with her. Molly will be marching in the Parade of Veterans and the Parade of Titleholders. We’re pretty proud of our girl.

They also have a photo contest, and I’ve dropped thirteen images on them for it. Here they are. Enjoy!

A Tough Dog Weekend

Molly had a surgery a week-and-a-half ago to remove a growth. It was sent off, and was found to be a cyst, not cancer. That’s great news. However, this weekend, her stitches weren’t quite holding well, and she’s gotten an infection in the sutured area. It’s not a big, big deal, but it was another visit to the vet for her yesterday morning.

Fast forward to last night. Bailey started being ill around midnight, and after a quick phone consult with our vet tech, we thought we were out of the woods. Just a short bit later, she was ill again, and it was obvious that something was wrong. Beck took her to an emergency vet hospital, and it was good that she did. Somehow, Bailey’d gotten hold of two socks, and had swallowed them whole. Her stomach was full of them, and they were starting to work their way through her system. This was nowhere near as bad as it could’ve been, but it meant a surgery. Bailey’s still at the hospital, and we’re hoping to bring her home tomorrow or Tuesday. She’ll have a week or more of recovery, and I don’t know how we’ll keep her still, given her six-month-old puppyhood, but we’ll find a way I’m sure.

Not a very cool weekend, but it could’ve been a lot worse.