We are excited
to be sharing the experience of training dogs with our new friend Celeste! She and
Rhonda have been getting up at 6am in order to take advantage of running the dogs during
the coolest portion of the day. Without her assistance, we would be falling behind
Unfortunately, September was punctuated by SAINT passing
over the Bridge. We knew this was the season of his retirement, just did not expect
him to decide he'd rather leave us than sit on the bench. SAINT was truly an
amazing sled dog! Never injured, invisible on the team; earning tight tug
awards every run! He is now buried in the woodland garden next to his mother. Rest in peace our dear friend and may you sing
to your hearts content!
Attended the annual Northern
New England Sled Dog Trade Fair. For 8 years we have been using Taiga harnesses and honestly Love them.
The collared neck seems to fit well on our Siberians vs other manufactured styles.
Apparently, alot of other folks also love the Taiga harnesses, because the past few years
production has been regularly backordered. So, while at the trade fair, we
asked Amy Dugan to take some custom measurements of our dogs. We look forward
to trying out Mountain
Ridge's harnesses this season.
The TK x DHARMA pups are maturing nicely. At 5
months of age, JESSIE (our cowgirl) clocks in at a whopping 30lbs.
CURLY and JASPER are showing great promise. CURLY is a nut case in
harness.. all attitude... so much like his grandfather it's not funny.
He also has the habit, like KOBE did,
of talking while running in harness. JASPER on the other hand, takes after his
father; quiet, more reserved, wants to please. Since we are training two 8 dog
teams right now, 4 dogs get a chance to run in lead each time we go out. The usual
crew of dependables are being paired up with RHONE, GRANITE
and RUBY. ALLAGASH and JELLO refuse to
retire! They both have impressed us with a few rocking runs in lead next to HALLEY!
All 4 of our intact females are in season. Assuming they are on a 6
month cycle, we'll have plenty of breeding options for consideration come April/May time
For the past few weeks, New England has been plagued by a crazy weather pattern (no doubt
a sign of Global Warming). The South Eastern and Central coastal region of New Hampshire
is recovering from the aftermath of a tornado. The roar of the storm reverberated like a
jet engine as it passed; scary considering we live 8 miles from where the twister first
touched down. In addition, we have been enduring daily afternoon thunder/lightening
storms. Thankfully... mornings are starting to cool off and the air has notes of that
exciting fall essence!
Our prior handler and someone we call friend, is Director of the 4H camp at
Bear Brook State Park. Chris has been prodding us for a few years now to conduct a sled
dog related presentation. Well, who doesnt LOVE puppies?! So Dharma and the pups
enjoyed a few field trips up to Allenstown. The pups had the opportunity to free run,
drive in the dog truck, hugged by strangers and learn to swim.
This year after Rhonda participated in the annual Sandown 5 Miler,
Bob drove the dog truck with RAVEN sitting proudly in the
passenger seat, in the Old Home Day parade. As a follow up; we submitted to an interview
and kennel tour for our local Tri Town newspaper.
Small projects around the house/kennel and yard have pleasantly kept us busy this summer.
On a side note, we adore this house! When we purchased back in 1999, the home started as a
simple log structure with a walkout basement and a lot of character. Since then,
weve added two additions and just recently renovated the main floor bathroom. Our
home is set back from road and surrounded by pine trees.
Its quite serene sitting out on a summer night around the fire pit or in the screen
room enjoying a book. Price of gas (auto and home fuel) is at historical record highs. We
will sleep with the thermometer set at 55 degrees this winter, run up the credit card
bills and eat Spam (no offense to folks who love the stuff) before we would ever resort to
selling off the dogs as a means to make ends meet. Keep the dogs Happy and Healthy, and it
has been said, they will return the favor 200% when it's time to hit the trail.
Since our truck was scheduled as a float in the town parade, the dog box
extension project to accommodate 4 more dogs, was put off until last. Many thanks to MuShield (any guesses what hobby the founder is
involved with :-?) for their detailed CNC machining.
While filling out Can-Am applications this month, it was not surprising to notice an
obvious disproportionate level of experience when comparing our resumes. For
the past three seasons, Bob has done most of the racing whereas prior to 2006, we
typically would have entered two teams in each event. So this coming season, we are
planning to mix it up a bit.
While making plans for breeding DHARMA we considered a number of males at stud, one of
them being JELLO. Even at 10 years old, that boy is simply
beautiful! So, when TK x DHARMA produced for us, a few pinto patterned / bi-eyed pups, we were thrilled!! Mind you, we dont really care what color our Siberians are, since its
performance which we consider first and foremost. However, like most breeders, we have
developed an eye for, and started to favor, various phenotypes and coat coloration's.
While making breeding decisions, if the various combination reproduces that which is
attractive to our eye, and eventually performs phenomenally well in harness, than
weve successfully done our homework.
One breeders preferences vs another should not be misconstrued by the outsider and or a
newbee to the Breed as avoidance or 'admittance' that various faults or
dishonesty exists within a particular parentage/line. Preferences vary widely among
breeders; without such diversity, the genetic make-up and gene pool of the Siberian Husky
would stagnate. Despite all the research, Nature may throw the genetic cards up in
the air and surprise us. Its what keeps the process of breeding, a constantly
evolving education and adventure.