Monday, January 12, 2009

All My Children - Part 2

Semper Fi, whelped January 7, 2002 out of GNC Ebony Silk & WD's Salsa. Trigger was in a litter of 7, four males, 3 females. They were all either black or brindle, a pretty typical greyhound litter. I had the honor of knowing almost the entire litter.

Trigger began his career at Geneva Lakes, in Wisconsin, on September 12, 2003. He raced very well at Geneva Lakes. His racing style was suited to that track. He won many races there. At the end of 2004 Geneva Lakes closed and he came to the Woodlands with his trainers, who were also his owners. It was here I met him. He ran his first race at the Woodlands on January 17, 2005 in a Grade B race. He placed 6th. He raced at the Woodlands until September 2, 2005. He retired that day after winning his final race!

The Old Fart decided he wanted Trigger before he ever saw him based on his racing name "Semper Fi", so off I went to talk to Gary & Norma, who I had become friends with while that trained at the Woodlands. They were happy to know that Trigger had a home to go to when he retired! We followed his career while he raced at the Woodlands & were there on his last race day and celebrated his win! What a high note to retire on!

When I would go to the race kennel to see Trigger he would always stand up and give the best hugs. He was a sweet soul then & still is today. The only time he demands is at dinnertime each & every night! I swear he has a watch somewhere under his fur!

When Trigger first came home, he was a total Mama's boy. I nicknamed him "Boo-Boo". That name still stick with him. Now, he loves the Old Fart & myself fairly equally. He has always been drawn to a female house mate for his pal though, first it was Rose and when she passed, he was pretty lost for a while. When we brought Munchie home he got excited again and now they are buddies! He playbows to her and begs her to play.

For Christmas of 2007 we got the most wonderful surprise gift from Gary & Norma, Trigger's owner/trainers. They sent us a package with a video of every race trigger ever ran play some loving playtime footage with Gary & Norma after he had retired! We watched him race over & over again amazed at how well he raced when at Geneva Lakes! It is a gift we will always treasure as he is the only one that we have every race on tape!

Trigger was a great addition to our family and we hope we will have him with us for many years to come.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Fooling The Poop Eaters

All dogs eat poop, face it people. This is something that goes back to when our dogs were wild, they ate their poop to protect them, keep the small away from their attackers. As we have domesticated them, most of that has gone away, but some still do it.

I only have a couple of poop eaters & they do it mostly in the winter. No one has ever figured out why poop eating increases in the winter, but it does. When I worked in the kennel, we had poop cups in almost all of the dogs muzzles, in the summer, maybe 5 had them. Strange, but true.

Our dogs like to graze in the winter too & I am not going out to scoop poop when it's freezing so ours go out with muzzles.

We also have a couple who love to eat dirt, not poop, DIRT! I'm not sure why this happens but I hate seeing them munch on the dark, rich dirt we have. Lord knows what's in that soil. I know bacteria, the same bacteria that lived in Calamity's leg for a year!

I'm sure this makes the neighbors wonder if our dogs are mean & we are protecting people or the stray cats that used to come in our yard (USED to - Trigger & Kade killed a cat in the yard in the fall). I made a tag for Calamity's muzzle that says "I'm not mean, I just eat poop!".

Greyhounds learn to wear muzzles at an early age, so muzzles usually do not bother them. Some greyhounds - Calamity - learn to get their muzzles off when they want them off. Calamity took hers off daily when she was in the racing kennel, drove her trainer crazy! She has learned to take it off as a tripawd too! I haven't seen her do it, but she's done it twice. I believe she lays down & swipes her good paw around the ear & pops the muzzle off. Just a guess.

In the winter, I am glad I have greyhounds are educated to the muzzle. Very rarely, will one come in and have poop on the muzzle because they still tried to eat some. They seem to know that when they have the muzzle on, they can't dine outside!