Tuesday, 30 January 2018

Ross Is 8 months Old

The boy is looking good. 
He currently stands at 64 cms and is 34.1kg. I'd say that's about ideal. 
(Loki was 65cms and 33kg - taller but lighter) 
His coat has improved though we accept he'll never be a heavily coated dog, but he'll have enough to get by. Again his vet visit has had to be put on the back burner .. more sleepless nights of worry for me but right now I just can't face it. 

Walks And Tears In Gyrn Goch

It was one of Tali's favourite places .. a place where we often stopped for a sneaky walk on the way home from the vets. Today it was a different set of dogs who walked there, I hope Tali was with us too
Jezi and Nico
As usual Nico get's in a scenery shot!
Ross and Kaiah enjoying a change of scenery

Yesterday - Today

A large homemade strawberry vodka kept me asleep until just before 6am, sadly now it's finished, I'll have to hint for some more. Waking at that hour is never a great plan, but for me actually getting that much sleep is unusual, I think the vodka works better than Kalms!
This morning life goes on, the guys want breakfast and being another beautiful morning they are no doubt looking forward to walks too! No medication, no special diet, no alarms, I deleted those last night I fear hearing them would have me throwing the phone at the fish tank.
I'll never forget the support given to me yesterday. I never expected to find Tali so ill yesterday morning. I guess for her sake I should take comfort from the fact that she had been fine going to bed on Sunday night. She still had antibiotics to take and I had thought that if the condition, whatever it was, was to return it would be within a few days of finishing the medication. I thought wrong.
Due to some errors of judgement on my behalf  finances are low but neither of us are now well enough to dig a hole and a private cremation wasn't something we thought we could afford. But friends pull out all the stops don't they and one offered to pay the cost up front and let me pay it back as and when. Due to to distance to the pet cemetery/crematorium Steve could not come with me and another friend was kind enough to give up her day off to to give me the company I needed. I have images in my head today that I've never seen before. It was all handled so beautifully and I got to say my last goodbye to Tali lying in a beautiful casket in a lovely chapel of rest ... she'll come home soon and I think we'll bury her next to Mikey, but away from Finlay .. she didn't like Finlay, he was far too much of a dumb blonde for her! 
The support on Facebook has been wonderful, as hard as it was I have honestly read every single comment and private message. When the chips are down the GSD community on there really comes together in support .. and to be fair I have lots of support from George friends too. Here I never know who's reading .. over 80 so far this morning, but hardly anyone says anything. Still I guess that was not what Tali's Tails was set up for, it was really more a personal diary for me.
Tali's Tails - of course the name will stay ... but I may have to change the "This is me" section.
I've just had a call from the vets .. Tali is back there and I'm now going to bring her home

Monday, 29 January 2018

Saying Goodbye

If loosing a dog leaves a hole in your heart then mine must be like a fecking sieve. It never ever gets easier, the heartbreak of loss is so intense that the body feels physically sick. Though people can give you strength and support, nothing can give you comfort. You know you are letting them go because you love them but that nagging doubt remains .. "what if?" Even when the vet struggles to find a vein because the dog has "collapsed" your brain is in overdrive  .. "but if we tried?" But no, you stay strong, it kills you but you know you are doing the right thing by your beloved dog.
They come into this world into my hands and it's my arms that holds them as they leave. I talk to them quietly, tell them I love them, thank them for sharing their lives with me and I hold them close to try and reassure them.. As they drift away to that forever sleep your heart breaks, the tears flow and you feel inconsolably distressed.  Another Blanik life is over, another star that shone brightly in your life goes out forever.
Today I wonder why do I do it? Why do I put myself through so much pain and heartache? Today I feel I can take no more of the pain of loss .. tomorrow I may feel the same ... but in time I know I'll look back at the treasured memories and feel blessed for having shared my life with her ... and so many other wonderful Blaniks.

Nos Da Tali Bach

The hardest part of loving is the letting go.
Goodnight, be at peace my lovely Tali.
Blanik Frankie. 7.1.05 - 29.1.18.
Thank you for keeping me on my toes for all these years .. you sure where a class act, a character, a legend. 

Sunday, 28 January 2018

Killing Time

Whilst Steve went for his Pre Op in the local hospital I went walking in Parc Menai with the youngsters. It has changed quite a lot in 20 odd years but the pathways are the same and it was an interesting change for me and them. 
Loved seeing my fist snow drops of the year - Soon be Spring! 

Saturday, 27 January 2018

Walk Two

I decided to set off round the field then go down the track, that would give Tali the option of coming as far as she wanted or going home straight away. 
 Tali set off happily down the field with her ball, but obviously didn't get involved in the frolicking. 
Asha, Ziva and Sammi having a great time with their toys.
After one circuit of the field I went out through the gate and set off down the track .. Tali turned left to go up the mountain, Hmm ...  somethings never change, but she did then decide to follow us. Rather than follow the track down I followed our boundary wall downhill. Before reaching the bend I turned to look for Tali, she's stopped half way down. With the other girls running ahead I called Tali, but still she stood there. Ok I understood, I called the girls back and as we turned round Tali turned tail and went home. Without doubt this girl knows her own mind, she wanted to come, but she also knew how far she could go. 

Walks One And Three

 As forecast the rain stopped so we set off out - no sooner than we had got off the property than the mist rolled in. The speed at which you loose visibility can be scary and I can well imagine you could loose your bearings very easily on unfamiliar ground.
Walk two has a post of it's own but by walk three the mist had again completely vanished. 
 One good thing as far as the dogs are concerned, after the rain
 the puddles turn into mini lakes. 
These 2 boys, unlike some of the previous generations, really don't mind getting their willy's wet!
So rude .. haha

It's Raining ...

But forecast to clear at lunchtime so it's late walks today.
The youngsters are playing with toys, but the oldies are happy to relax.
Tali on the sofa watching the madness!

Ziva sitting in her normal bored slapper position!
A vet suggested she had bad hips because she sits like this .. 
My reply of 4 /5 .. soon shut her up!

Friday, 26 January 2018


With such wonderful weather again I convinced Steve to go for a run in the car this afternoon and take me exploring. We didn't go far, just to Llanllyfni and back up Lon Ddwr towards Talysarn, with a stop off at the base of Cwm Silyn. I really enjoyed our hour out ... Such stunning views. 
I fell in love with this derelict cottage. Such a lovely spot to live .. amazing views. I could just about make out the name on the gate so when I got back I googled it. ..
"High up on the slopes of Craig Cwm Silyn, Maen y Gaseg is a classic example of the quarryman's "tyddyn" or smallholding.The wages of a quarryman were not enough to support a family on, and most quarrymen in the Nantlle valley rented smallholdings to suppliment their meagre wages. As the slate industry declined and the welfare state civilised the ravages of victorian capitalism, so the workers moved to warmer and more comfortable council houses in the villages.Today, the landscape is graced by the many remains of their smallholdings, slowly returning to nature. Curiously, "Maen y Gaseg in English translates to "the Stone Mare"...I think my rudimentary Welsh is missing something there."
 This is "Craig Cwm Silyn" - we walked here in 2015
Wonderful memories of walking with friends .. and Mikey
We saw Lamas at the top and Alpaca on Lon Ddwr.
So pleased we went out, North Wales is so beautiful and there's so much to see. These days are precious and not to be wasted sitting on our butts watching TV!
But now I need to sleep .. Nos Da!

Back to Four Walks

 Jezi and Nico 
 Nico had a great second walk with the girls.
They are not often together and there was lots of flirting from everyone!
 Kaiah, Loki and Ross
Asha was another to get a second walk and Steve took her out with Tali whilst I did the third walk on the mountain. Tali still needs to go but I think the field is currently enough for her. 

Sssshhh Tali Is Sleeping

err .. no she's not, those eyes are open and she's not missing a trick. The photo was taken last night around 8.45pm so she was on pins waiting for her 9pm fish supper. As you can see she's could make it onto the sofa yesterday too. So Tali is doing well, I guess crunch time will be when she finishes the medication, they are definitely treating the symptoms, lets just hope the cause can also be controlled.
I had an interesting chat with my friend Paula last night. She in't anyone my regular friends know, we met sitting/sleeping opposite each in Walton hospital. She has the most beautiful Ragdoll cat and loves to follow the photos and stories of the Blanik gang. I'd had a particularly bad head day on Wednesday, a day like I hadn't had in a while and it did give me comfort to talk to her and see that she is still experiencing similar days. They tell you in Walton that you have experience a life changing event, but you think yeah .. I'll soon be back to normal.  Well I guess this is now normal, but it's now a new normal for both of us. She has to leave notes around the house to remind her to do things, similarly I have named alarms on my phone to remind me to do things. She experiences debilitating tiredness, I have to sleep most afternoons or I start to feel ill. We both forget things and struggle sometimes mid sentence to remember what we are talking about .. though I have to admit that rarely happens to me now. But what upset us both is people who say "Oh yes that happens to me, I forget things too," or "I get tired and sleep in the afternoon." I don't think people are being unkind, sometimes maybe it's misguided kindness in trying to make you feel better. But the tiredness I feel if I don't sleep in the afternoon or early evening is beyond anything I've experienced before, if I don't sleep I can't function and start to feel really ill. Paula is the same. We have both found ways in making sure it doesn't ruin our lives though. For me I'm lucky that Ian drives home from the shows. Without him I doubt I could continue to go to the Champ shows .. or I'd have to sleep over! The other thing that irritates me, as I've said before is when people ask, "How are you?" and before you can answer they say .."You look very well." I usually say I'm fine, but I'm broken on the inside so no one sees a wound, scar or plaster. Again I don't think people are being unkind .. just lack of understanding maybe?
Ross is still a concern, but I had to put the whole thing on the back burner for a while right now. Tali has taken priority this week. Honestly I'm not sticking my head in the sand, with his symptoms remaining the same I know I need to find out what going on. But as he's still the clown at the party I don't think another week will make much difference. It's a lovely sunny morning here and I'll be off out in no time .. now what do I do with Tali today???

Wednesday, 24 January 2018

"Everyone" Else Out

 Nico and Jezi
 Asha, Loki, Ziva and Sammi
Well I left the door open and the gate, let Tali choose for herself, and out she came! 
I doubt she'll be walking the mountain again but we have 2 fields and a track, so she can choose. 

A New Place For The Young Guns

But not for me, though I haven't been here in years! 

Tali's Breakfast

Two things different to yesterday morning - 
1 she can stand up, 2 she's eating - 
and she didn't notice 5 tablets in her breakfast! 
I know we are on borrowed time, yesterday showed me how frail she is now.
But as long as she's happy and comfortable we plod on 

Tuesday, 23 January 2018

Back From The Vets

Some of you know that Steve messaged me mid morning on Saturday to say she wasn't right, but she had eaten. She seemed Ok Saturday night and Sunday but yesterday alarm bells started ringing when she refused to come for the walk. My stomach churned over, but I felt it was the right thing to not try and convince her to come for a walk. This morning she really wasn't well, she was wobbly, hunched and seemed in discomfort. She refused breakfast but had her pills with some toast and white fish. She then went back to her crate and refused to come out. I had to literally haul her out to get her to the van and had to lift her up into the van. On examination she has a high temperature and some congestion on her lungs, she's had antibiotics and an injection to help clear the fluid. We'll just have to see what the next few days bring now, I know she's an old lady but we are never prepared are we!

Tali's Not Well

Tali is not well this morning. She's very stiff, hunched and wouldn't eat. I've bribed her with some toast and fish to get her medication into her and have had to physically pull her out of the crate. I think she finds comfort in her own space but Steve and I agreed it was better for her to get moving. I know she's very old and this may be the beginning of the end .. but I have made a vets appointment for 10.30am. What ever age she is I need her to be comfortable. I'll post again later. 

Monday, 22 January 2018

A Worrying First

As I often do I took the dogs around the field just the once before going out for the walks today. I sometimes find it useful as it gets rid of excess energy before going onto the track.
Tali toddled around as she does, mooching and rolling .. she does love to roll. But as I crossed over to go through the gate and off the property she paused, looked at me for a few seconds and came home. My stomach churned over, the beginning of different times I guess. Steve was out so I followed her back and let her in to the cottage. It would have been unfair and unkind to make her come for a walk when she made it obviously clear that she didn't want to come, first time ever. We'll see what tomorrow brings ....

More Photos From The Show

Some lovely photos on Facebook today. 
Just had to share - shame nothing great of Sammi .. lol
 Sarah just standing Ross ready for the judge, 
shame photo was not taken 10 seconds later, but at least we can see his shape!
 Love this of Ross with Sophie and Ellie - Sarah's daughter
Despite discussion on Facebook about who the dog is, it is Ross.
I was there when it was taken
 Great shot of Loki
 Kaiah - wonderful - just wonderful 
Sammi - well at least there is a photo of her!

Sunday, 21 January 2018

Yesterday's Show Pups ...

Out in the rain and mud.

Sadly, Yes he was lame after the walk.
I need an answer but I fear what it may be. 
I just don't know if there was a weakness there and the bump in the snow has aggravated it or the bump in the snow has caused a problem .. or maybe it's all unrelated. Anyway I think we need to see a vet mid week. 

First Show Of The Year

Ross looking to see what he's won.
.. and a bloody early start it was too. With rumors of traffic light on the way up to the venue and people missing their classes on the 2 previous days of the show due to congestion on the M6 there was a lot of discussion on which routes to follow. We opted to say clear of the motorway and  go off the A55 and follow the A51 directly to the venue. Yes it took us 10 mins or so longer, but less mileage, no delays and we came into the venue from the opposite direction to the main show traffic. Bloody great! 2,210 dogs where entered yesterday making the entry over the 4 days 9,382.
I was picking Ian up on route and was sad to discover that Bella had had diarrhea over night so had to give the show a miss. Sad really, it's always nice to start the show season at Manchester, but apart from being against rules to show a dog with any illness, leaving her home was the responsible thing to do.
The car park has hard standing areas and grass areas, being directed to park in the second row on the grass I did wonder how we would get out of the soggy grass that was fast turning into mud. But when walking on the road I discovered it was the lesser of the 2 evils as the rain had frozen and the pathways were lethal! I spent the rest of the day walking through the mud and came home looking like I'd been in the woods with the dogs and not to a show.
Loki in second place
Little Ross was in the first class, an entry of 7 MPD, must be the largest class of male puppies in the 6 -9 month group that I've seen in a while. I was so worried he would be lame, but there was not a limp in sight and other than a bit of shouting now and again he gave a great, sound, steady performance. My opinion on how the class was placed is irrelevant, but I didn't feel he was the winner, there was some lovely young boys in there and I was very pleased with his position.
Loki, predictably gave a faultless performance and the first 4 dogs in his class are lovely and regularly seem to trade places. Loki did look a tad "Tall" in the company, but you know it's only one factor of his conformation isn't it. The boy does me proud, looked so the part and even put some extra effort into his gaiting!
Kaiah's class was probably quality wise the strongest class of the day. Kaiah is not yet in full coat and with her light frame it was apparent in the ring. But she still looked super and her outstanding movement could not be ignored. At the beginning of the class I said I would be pleased to see her placed .. and she was.
Now I know I'm bias, but the 4 year old Sammi looks the best she's ever done, she's mature, has great coat and looks so beautiful, but within the show world I'm not blinkered. Therefore I was over the moon that Sammi was second in such a good class yesterday, that's her second second place in limit in 2 shows, but the dream is to win limit and get that elusive stud book number, maybe one day! Sadly as ever there are no great photos of Sammi, I've no idea why but whoever has the camera it always seems to happen .. great photo of everyone else but nothing special of Sammi!
Not a great one but a Sammi pic 
Whilst at the show I had a text from Steve with good news that he's had a pre op date for his eye surgery, so when I had time I rang him to share the good news. But then he told me that he was concerned about Tali. He'd struggled to get up in the morning and then slept all day. Well old dogs do sleep a lot and that was of no concern to me, but I was concerned that he'd struggled to wake her up. Anyway after coming home and hearing all the detail I think/I hope that because Kaiah wasn't there sounding the morning alarm when he got up Tali was simply in a deep sleep and with such poor hearing was oblivious to the goings on of the morning! Any little difference to the norm does churn your stomach but I refuse to let that spoil the twilight years for her and me.
Last night I had the headache from hell, with hindsight I think it was a migraine, but with my previous history, last night I couldn't help but panic .. I went to bed at 7.30pm and lay there in the dark worrying. I tried to keep myself awake incase I died in my sleep, I know how pathetic that sounds with no headache in daylight hours, but logic goes out of the window when fear takes over.
Kaiah has come in season, she couldn't have timed it any better for me. We should be Ok for about 10 days or so, but after that life will be hard for a while. Though Ross didn't notice Sammi's season a couple of months back I'm sure he'll be aware this time, he's older .. and it's Kaiah!
Yesterday someone asked if I would be interested in having a litter from their dog and Sammi. They would love a puppy bitch from the litter. He's a beautiful dog and one Sammi loves to flirt with, sadly I feel the breeding is not compatible .. and even if it were I really don't want another puppy for a while. No point saying I'd have a litter and not keep one, I couldn't do it that's just not me!