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Wednesday, January 20, 2010

A better day

K and I headed out into another dim day on the Front Range. The absence of blue skies for two days in a row constitutes a rare event around here.
We're taking advantage of being on foot, rather than on a bike, by exploring nooks and crannies of our world that are not next to trails. As we took an easy gradient up a hillside with no trails, K's body language suddenly broadcast an alert that an animal was nearby.
Her sinuous muscles tensed and her nose sampled the breeze. I looked up the grassy hillside and spotted two coyotes purposefully trotting away from us. They squeezed under a barbed wire fence, trotted some more, squeezed under another fence, and disappeared into an aspen forest. K found them more exciting than yesterday's elk, let me tell you!

After leaving the meadow-like hillside, we wound our way through a boulder-strewn ponderosa pine forest. I was specifically looking for scent posts of bobcats or lions that might serve as good wildlife camera sites. We found no scent posts but we found a rocky promontory that K conquered! The snowy mountains are barely perceptible in the gray sky behind K.
This rocky pinnacle marked the start of a steep north-facing ravine that wildlife loves. I wanted to explore the ravine but my body isn't ready for such rough terrain. Soon enough, it will be. For today, K seemed obsessed with looking down the ravine in a nervous way. I wondered what she sensed. I didn't see any tracks that alarmed me.
When I stood on the tip-top of the rocky pinnacle, I saw a view of our mountains that I haven't spotted before. The high mountains in the background have a deep covering of snow, and the ski area in the foreground looks inviting. I think that we'll visit this spot again!
On a later walk, R joined us, adding a spritz of high voltage energy to our outing. I just love watching that boy run! His exuberance makes me grin.
On our arrival home, K seemed a bit subdued. I have the impression that she feels left out when R can romp while she's leashed due to the vet's orders. Since having a job to do for me always cheers her up (even when it's an awful job like picking up keys :), I asked her to pick up an extra-long shoe horn that I'd dropped. No problem, she said!

Now, lucky me, I have a Labraduo watching over me. K stays right by my side, quietly watching and waiting to see if I need her. But, she sometimes dozes on the job! The tee-shirt is to keep her from scratching her itchy incision on her belly. The vet will remove the staples on Friday, making K a much happier pup!
And R stays close by also. Since my surgery, I've learned even more about the sweet soul residing within this happy-go-lucky boy. A few times, I've retreated to bed to regroup my body and soul, and R gently snuggles up against me. I've never seen him be so gentle so it makes me feel special.
Thanks to all of you for your advice and uplifting messages yesterday. I kept up with my pain meds today, and, although I hate the goofiness and fog that they cause, my spirits are higher when I don't have such piercing pain in my neck. I'll stick with them for a while longer.


  1. Glad today was better. Excellent work, Miss K, picking up the shoe horn. It's so nice to hear that R has figured out that now is different from before and acts accordingly.

  2. Another day
    Another great post!

    AND another day closer to your recovery!

    Thanks for sharing as always!

  3. Not that I would ever wish this time recovering on you, KB, but it IS opening up a new world to you........of views never seen before R behavior newly noticed...and I would bet we are going to learn new things from you as you see your world you walk instead of ride for awhile as you recover...

    Hoping for a a pain free night for you !

  4. Awwww! K just looks so docile there, picking up that shoehorn! Bless her heart! I'm glad things were better for you today. At least every step from here is a step in the right direction!

    To answer your question about the greyhounds, I believe that most greyhounds are good with younger children, once they're mobile and if they have dog savvy parents. They don't tolerate kids climbing on them too well and some get hurt from that. Many adoption groups won't adopt greyhounds to families with toddlers because the risks are there. They haven't had to share their space with anything like a toddler, and sometimes it doesn't go well. When a dog growls in warning, which is what they're supposed to do, and they get reprimanded by the adults for growling, then some learn to deal with the problem in other ways. I don't think that makes them unique from any other breed of dog. Of the five greyhounds we've had, three were or are wonderful with young children and will even seek them out. One is as happy with them as she is with any other human and Hawk was scared witless of them. He could never have lived with a child. He was afraid of anything that was smaller than he was (including greyhound puppies, which was probably wise) and if he couldn't escape them, he had a lot of anxiety. I think it's really about the magic of finding the right dog to go with the family, which is probably also true of most breeds. A greyhound with a four or five year old and up is usually a very good combination, once the child is old enough to understand certain issues about how a dog needs space at times and what to do and not do. If that makes sense. They are generally very docile, gentle dogs, and they are not high energy at all! Most sleep more than they're awake. I hope that answers the question for you! Most of the time it's a good fit, but individual quirks of dogs and families always play into the situation.

  5. Glad it was a good day today. That's the nature of healing...some good days and some not so good. Here's hoping for more of the good ones.

  6. K is a great "Therapy" dog! Both she and R have such glossy coats. Keep smiling, KB! My friend, Pete, who runs Marathons visited me today - he puts the screws you talked about yesterday on his running shoes.

  7. I am glad you are in less pain today - hopefully you won't need them full strength for too long.

    The veiws from your walks are so beautiful - it is just amazing that you are out and about so quickly! And it must be exciting and fun to be finding all these new places - at least that is a good thing to think about right now!

    R and K are just such beautiful dogs - and K is just so impressive with her helpfulness and abilities. I forget what good helpers dogs can be but she is a great reminder!

  8. I'm happy that you're doing better today. I, too, don't really like taking medication, but in your case it sounds like sticking with it until your neck starts to feel better is the best choice.

    K really is awesome - it's so easy to tell how much she loves you. I can't wait to see her romping around like her old self once again.

  9. Very proud of you and your decision to give the meds some more time:) If you have time, go back on our blog to late June/early July and read about Phantom's reaction to his shirt when he had surgery - he hated his shirt and he was so depressed. But it was what he needed even if he didn't agree.

    Keep up the good work, we are all pulling for you.

  10. Sounds like you had a good day. It looks so pretty there.

    Pugs & Kisses,

    Yoda & Brutus

  11. Spending these quiet times w/ your best buddies can be the best medicine! (of course keep up the pain meds as needed).
    I can see the love and concern on R's face!
    I'm posting an audio of our resident coyotes on tomorrow's post!
    I hope you continue to grow stronger each day!

  12. Seems that labraduo attention is just what you need. I guess that old saying 'I try to take one day at a time but sometimes two come at once' applies.

  13. the views are gorgeous...i am amazed at you and your fierce determination!!
    ya, pain meds suck...but, you need them for now...
    K is so talented, and R...such a sweet boy who tries so hard to be like his big sis...
    glad you had a better day....hope you see the sun today!

  14. Glad to hear you had a better day. It is so uplifting to hear how positively you are tackling this recovery.
    I am sure that these quiet and loving moments with your two devoted companions are speeding that recovery time along as well.

    Byron's Mom

  15. More rain here today - so it may creep your way by tomorrow.

    Curious - what kind of harness do K & R wear?

    Love your shots. All dogs are therapy dogs, in their own way!

  16. All I can say, yet again, is that you are quit remarkable! I am sure that you are going to come through this experience with specialised wisdom of this particular fight. Keep it up, KB - we are all routing for you!

    As always, your doggies are gorgeous and so beautifully tuned into you. They too are a testiment to your spirit!

    I know this is now going to sound really random, but please bare with me. Here goes...

    I recently was paging through an amazing book, called "LIFE". For some reason it reminded me of your appreciative spirit. It was simply a collection of photographs, but at microscopic level(to the n'th degree). It generated such wonder in me as I realised that there are so many things around us which we can't see but are indeed there.

    Perhaps this time of immobility is the very opportunity for you to investigate that particular angle??? (if you wish, of course!)

    I suppose 'keeping your chin up' is not too difficult to ask? :)


  17. Great detail and photos on your adventures, KB, and I'm greatly relieved to hear you'll soon be back in the saddle riding.

    You might be interested in our mountain bike trip over Rollins Pass, "the mountains in the background." You might enjoy the trip, but it was too far for my boy Conor O'Neill to tackle. He's almost eleven now, so he's at that stage in his life where his spirit is more than willing but his ole body fades a lot sooner than he wants it to.

    Anyhow, if you're interested, check out

    I've put a permanent link to your site on Mountain Runner, and get news each time you post.

    Thanks for sharing!

  18. K does such a good job picking things up for you! I'm amazed because I can't get Java to understand what I want when I've tried to teach her the same. But I'm inspired now. I'll have to try again.

    Once again, you have a great perspective. I truly admire that.

  19. Thanks to all of you. You have no idea how inspiring your messages are.

    To Brenda, those are Gentle Leader Easy Walk harnesses. The leash attaches to the front of the harness so the dog can't pull so hard. It's a good idea that works with all but the most strong puller.

    Max: I'm going to check on that book. It sounds cool. Just my type of thing.

    And, OP Pack: Thank goodness that k isn't as depressed about her tee shirt as Phantom was!


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