Well, am finally back from a really long hiatus, it seems! Been very busy and had no time to update, but we have a litter of Papillons, our first arrive exactly a month ago, sired by Dalton out of Mirai. We have two boys and a girl, all VERY nicely marked with lovely heads! Very excited about them, here are some pictures at 23 days old:
I have a favourite, of course... I know we aren't supposed to, but we can't help it! Am in love with little Freddie. He's just the littlest puppy ever; born at just 104g and now at 4.5 weeks only weighs 570g. But he has just the most inquisitive, laid-back nature in addition to the most beautiful head! The three of them are named after the Harry Potter Weasley twins, Fred and George, and their only sister Ginny. Their registered names are inspired by some of my favourite Jane Austen works: Persuasion, Northanger Abbey, and Sense and Sensibility.
In other news, the final shows of the year will be happening this Sunday at SS2 Mall, so drop by if you have the time! Monroe and Juno will be making an appearance... it'll be Monroe's first show and we've been training hard. So far, he's doing just great! Like a pro already, even though I barely had him on a lead before this. Both are doing stellar on the table and free stacking SO well on the ground. Am incredibly proud of my two puppies!
Will have to take a video of Monroe moving one of these days... I'm so happy with him -- he has such superb movement, and he's just such an elegant dog overall. Very appreciative to his breeders, Markus and Klaus of Bonitos Companeros in Germany for letting him come here!
Anyway, I hope it won't be another 8 months till I update again... gotta get my ass off this chair more often!
Finally, after the longest wait ever... we have 3 boys and a girl in the house! Been keeping this under wraps for the past couple of months because I'm superstitious about "counting your eggs before they hatch" and wanted to wait until the pups arrived and were out of the woods before saying anything about it.
Actually got confirmation on day 31 when I brought Lyra to the vet's and we saw 4 puppies on the ultrasound. All with good heartbeats and formed legs! I monitored the pupppies' heartbeats with a fetal doppler through whelping and it was a lifesaver! But alas, Lyra was in labour far too long... Stage 1 started at 7.30am on Thursday, and didn't progress to stage 2 till 11.30pm and I could feel a stuck puppy so it was off to the vet's at 4am for an emergency c-section.
Luckily, said stuck puppy was just fine and thank GOD, because when I opened the sac and saw her, I knew she was the ONE! My perfect little girl, with her perfectly marked body and cutest face ever. Things were rough to start with because she kept losing weight although it looked like she was latching on to mom pretty well, so it was hand-feeding for about 8-9 days with a special puppy milk replacer formula that I have, and she thankfully quickly gained weight on it and is now almost caught up with her brothers.
Anyway, the puppies are now 12 days old and Juno was the first one to open her eyes 2 days ago. Well, it was just one eye at first, but now both are open while none of the 3 boys even have any of their open yet!
Here are some pictures of the puppies, taken a few days ago:
I can't believe I neglected to make a birthday post for Dalton, who turned one on 22nd October. I did, however, take pictures of him that weekend! It was quite a feat, stacking, baiting, and taking the pictures by myself, but all done pretty easily thanks to how much technology has progressed. I used the WiFi on my Canon 70D, and downloaded the EOS app on my Galaxy S3, so I could snap pictures, focus, and zoom in and out from my phone. Cool, eh?
Doesn't he have just the loveliest outline? From his pretty, absolutely correct head to his quality coat, angles, and that perfect tail set and tail carriage! Let me tell you, his tail comes right off his back when it's not covered with all that fur, and it's carried in a perfect arch--that's one of the things I love about all my Papillons. None of them have flat tails! They all carry their tails in beautiful arches. Makes for a lovely picture!
He just can't wait to get off the table in this picture! Anyhow, time sure flies. Happy birthday, little man! He's just the teeniest dog with the biggest attitude ever, don't mess with him! Wonder how he stuffed all that fire in a 9.5 inch tall, 5-lb package?
Got a brand new Canon 70D last week--it just hit the shelves a couple of weeks ago, so I brought it out to be tested on the dogs, of course! Love it. It's leaps and bounds better than my old 550D. Burst mode alone is awesome--I don't have to shoot in JPEG anymore! It's capable of 7fps, and love the articulating touch screen. Never thought that touch screen would come in so handy, but you know what? It totally is.
Was hoping for better high ISO performance, but sadly, it isn't much better than the 550D or 7D so, am gonna have to stick to using ISO3200 or less. Decided to get a Tamron 24-70 f2.8 VC lens. Hopefully I'll be able to get a copy in a couple of days! Tested it out at the store the other day, and it was actually pretty impressive. AF was better than I expected--just a little bit slower than my wicked 85mm f1.8, which just has the fastest AF ever.
So anyhow, on to pictures! (Click on them to enlarge)
Yikes. Sorry I was gone for so long! Life was getting the better of me. In interesting news, Cadence turned 4 on July 2nd!! I can't believe this naughty boy is already FOUR. WOW.
Somehow, I still think of him as a puppy. I'll never forget the day I went to pick him up from his breeder--he was so tiny, he fit inside my little carrier bag. He was a whirlwind of activity, and never sat still for even a split second.
Happy Birthday, Cadence buddy! And thanks for gracing my life with your antics. My life would've never been the same without you.
Without Cadence, I would've never met some people whom have become some of my closest friends. I would've never known how awesome it is to have company all the time, who never leave your side no matter what. They're there rain or shine, whether you're having a bad day or not. The best part is, they're ALWAYS happy to see you after a long day's work!
I love my dogs. But Cadence was the first one to waltz into my life, and for that, he will always be special.
Lyra turned 2 last weekend, and we threw a pool party for her! Her cousins, Bella & Mocha were born just one day before she was, so we celebrated their birthdays together. We had the party at Bella's owner's home, which has a nice yard and swimming pool for the dogs. Here are some pictures of all the doggies in attendance (and some humans, too)!
We had so much fun! The humans, and the dogs alike. I still can't believe that Lyra is TWO. Wow. She's still a puppy in my head (and she certainly still acts like one). Here's to hoping that we have many years ahead!
Just a preface: Coat Handler wins, hands-down (this is for the benefit of those who are too lazy to read through the entire post.
I've been using these three brands for the past year, and here are the different shampoos and conditioners that I tried out (click on the pictures for more info):
Funnily enough, every single shampoo and conditioner that I've ever used on Cadence.... has yielded pretty much the same results. It might be because Papillon coats are different from Cavalier coats, or because he has no ear fringe, or because he doesn't have red fur. Red hairs are more brittle and prone to mats and breakage than any other colour. So, for the sake of comparison, I'm going to review this based on results I got with Lyra.
Her coat mats HORRIBLY. Especially her ears, underarms, and sometimes chest. So conditioners are of utmost importance. By far, the worst conditioner on the list is the Isle of Dogs Heavy Management conditioner. It is also the most EXPENSIVE!! It stinks, too. The scent is overpowering--smells like roses, which I am really not a fan of. Every single time I used this conditioner, Lyra's fur would mat the very next day, and keep on doing so until her next bath. It is really no fun at all, trying to get out mats day after day.
All the shampoos were pretty much the same. None of them were especially adept at removing stains off fur (the only thing that does this well is hydrogen peroxide 3% mixed in with cornstarch). My favourite shampoos on this list are the IOD Lush Coating shampoo and the Coat Handler Clarifying Shampoo. I try not to use clarifying shampoos too often, since I bathe the dogs once a week, so on regular days, I use the IOD Lush Coating Shampoo, and right before shows, either the Coat Handler clarifying shampoo or the IOD White Coat.
Sadly, all of the conditioners here are awful except for the Coat Handler. It is an AMAZING conditioner that's reasonably priced! It can be diluted to be used in spray bottles (which I do when I brush Lyra's coat), and works well when you're trying to remove mats. For the few months that I was using it, Lyra barely had any mats at all, to my amazement. The Coat Handler shampoo and conditioner smell like baby powder, and it goes away after a day or two. I usually prefer a longer-lasting scent, but it's a good tradeoff, I guess.
The Chris Christensen shampoo and conditioner were both average. The shampoo was pretty good at cleaning dirt and mud, etc., but there was nothing special about them. I'll also review this Biogroom shampoo and conditioner since I'd used it on Cadence a couple of years back.
The shampoo is pretty strong, so I definitely don't recommend using it too often. The conditioner smells REALLY nice, and the smell is very long lasting... it's an okay conditioner, but nothing special. I've only used it on Cadence, though, so not sure how well it gets rid of and prevents mats.
Anyway, hope this review helped! I am definitely sticking to the Coat Handler conditioner from now on. As for shampoos, I think I'll just play around and find out which one smells best! I always use a clarifying shampoo before shows, though, so I think I'll always have a bottle of Coat Handler shampoo around.
People often have trouble telling the difference between the types of breeders that are out there. I once read this article written by Veronica Hull of Telvara Cavaliers, and have always found it to be so true!
This was originally posted here, on Chatterbox. I aspire to always be first and foremost, a great dog owner. Whether or not my dogs are shown doesn't matter. The most important point is that they are pets first before they are show dogs. I will never have more dogs than I can adequately care for, which in my case, means 6-8 dogs. They will NEVER live in cages or pens, and they will always be a part of the family. They will all be housetrained (really, this is the most important point for me. Any housetrained dog can have free reign of the house), and they will all know basic (and not so basic!) commands like sit, stay, come, stand, wait, etc.
One of these days, I'll go more in depth. But for now, I'm happy with the way my dogs live! They hang out with me whenever I'm home, watch me cook dinner, get to EAT some of my dinner, sleep on my bed, and go for daily walks. I reckon they are a couple of very satisfied dogs!
Nothing much has been going on lately, so decided to get some new pictures of the dogs. Tested out this Canon 100mm f/2.8 L macro lens the other day, and what can I say? It's amazing! Completely blew me away. Here are some fun photos of the dogs, just running around the park:
I know it seems like Cadence is rarely featured in my photos, but the truth is that, he HATES being photographed!! Everytime I whip out the camera, he refuses to come when called, and would rather go and check other things out. Worst of all, he doesn't even play fetch, so I can't get his attention by throwing a ball. GRR. So yeah, more pictures of Lyra as usual.
I ran out of my old ear cleaner that I brought back from Canada 2 years ago lately, so I had to go hunting for more. Went out and bought this German-made cleaner:
The brand is Hagen, and it has boric acid as a part of its ingredients. This is what I used to use:
It's just a basic, store-bought ear cleaner, but I loved it. It didn't stink, and there was no boric acid in it. After I started using the Hagen ear cleaner, it became obvious that Lyra is allergic to the boric acid. The ingredients were similar, with the exception of that one product. I started hunting around the petstore for something without boric acid, to no avail. So, I decided to make my own! There are a TON of different recipes out there, but this is what I use:
Hydrogen Peroxide 6% and isopropyl alcohol (rubbing alcohol). You can get these two at the pharmacy, usually at the "wound cleaning" section, as both are used to clean wounds.
The other two ingredients that you need are tea tree oil, and water!
I have no idea why, but tea tree oil is VERY expensive. A tiny bottle (10ml) costs more than RM20, which is ridiculous, but I guess it's acceptable since only a little bit will be needed for this mixture. I don't really have a specific recipe for this ear cleaner--I kind of just estimate the volumes that I need.
Basically, I get a small bottle with a sharp tip, sort of like the vinegar bottles, and fill some water in. After that, I pour some alcohol in, and then add in the tea tree oil. Maybe a couple of drops is enough, depending on the size of your bottle. I don't add in the hydrogen peroxide until right before I want to use the cleaner, because mixing H202 with the water will make it oxidize.
Shake the bottle and pour into the dogs' ears, rub the base, and let him/her shake it out! That's it. Simple, isn't it? Be sure not to use this on ears with open sores or cuts because the alcohol will irritate it. I don't use much alcohol, it's just needed to help the ears dry naturally. Tea tree oil is supposed to help kill bacteria, and it smells pretty good, too, so I like it.
So that's it! Simple recipe. You can do a google search to check out other recipes. Most of them will include things like witch hazel, but I couldn't find that here, so had to skip it.
Blog for the Dogs
Here's where I chronicle the dogs' daily lives, write reviews on dog products, and share tips on everything under the sun.