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Friday, October 8, 2010

Power of the Paw

K and I started slowly this morning, first snuggling, then playing some games, and finally heading out for a walk into the first morning that felt like winter. K stood next to a 10 year old aspen that is starting to change colors. I noticed its tiny sprout poking out of the ground a decade ago and protected it with a rock ring. Look how tall it is now!
K and I walked slowly, scaring up a gregarious flock of robins from an aspen grove. Their sudden fluttering and calling alarmed K but she calmed down for a photo by an aspen tree.
When we arrived home, we played our "pick out the toy" game. K has learned to pick out "octopus" very reliably, and today, she suddenly seemed to recognize another toy as well. Here she is surrounded with a plethora of toys before I asked her to pick up one specific toy.
Then, I said "ring", and she made the right choice!
K seems to love the attention that I shower on her while we play these mind games designed to keep her sane during this long recovery. Our time spent playing games and going for tiny little walks tells her that she's still my special girl.

Today, she reached the 2 week post-surgery mark and had her cast changed by our vet. Fortunately, her sores and skin infection had cleared up. Moreover, her paw looked normal, unlike before surgery when one toe jutted upward at an unnatural angle. That's all such encouraging news, helping buoy my spirits. It seems almost silly how much the angle of one of K's toes can affect my mood!

After spending time with K, I took our black tornado, R, with me for a short mountain bike ride. We climbed up high to Hug Hill, and the sight of the first snow on the Divide awed me. It's the beginning of a long season of the mountains being cloaked in snow.
While I gawked at the view, R busily tried to corral a chipmunk who was stuck in an island of juniper bushes. This chipmunk has made the same mistake before, ending up far from his burrow with R focused on him, wagging his tail at warp speed while tracking the rodent. To my delight, I discovered that our training is paying off - R responded to a "leave it" and then "come", abandoning the chipmunk chase to get rewarded by me. Behind R, the chipmunk scurried to his hole.
Then, in this very exciting spot for a rodent-obsessed dog, we practiced a stand-stay. R held it rock solidly, and appeared to gaze at the snow-powdered mountains. In reality, he was probably contemplating the chipmunk. R's chances of catching that chipmunk may be over until next spring, for the chipmunks go into hibernation very soon. In fact, the forecasted chilly weather for the next few days may send them into their burrows for the next 5 months.
Soon, I left R at home and rode a little further by myself. I pedaled up to a favorite ridge to see the Divide. During my climb, a wall of clouds enveloped the Divide, almost totally obscuring the gorgeous mountains. Indeed, as I pedaled along the spine of the ridge, first hail and then "snail" (hail-snow mix) fell out of the skies, freezing me to the bone. I think that our Indian Summer is over.
Just like yesterday, during my ride, a vision of K running next to me kept shimmering in my mind. I'm finding the positive attitude that I need to have, for K's sake, to help her heal. Thanks to my friends out there in Blogville who have been so kind over the past weeks.

Here's to the Power of the Paw!


  1. Great kjob K that game sure looks like fun. Hope your feets are getting better
    Benny & Lily

  2. CHEERS from 'Paws'ylvania for K!

    What great pics and news -

    Have a great weekend!

  3. I knew K was smart enough to pick out the toys by name! I'm betting she knows all of them by the time her cast comes off. By then she'll be mobile enough to go fetch your drink of choice from the refrigerator for you! ;)

    I love your autumn pictures! It's just beautiful there. I'm envious until I hear the talk about snow!

  4. Great news about K's paw - we just knew there would be a good report today.

    The three pups here would love for some snow to make its way here, but the Mom is hoping to stretch out this awesome fall for as long as is possible.

    Here's to a great weekend for all.

  5. We in Sunny Minniesnowda, had 85 degrees today! Unbelievable for October! I'll settle for 72 for the next year, but 80s is just too warm for me.

    Great foot report! Yippee!


  6. We are stopping by to send the power of the paw K's way.
    She is one of the most beautiful brown labs I have seen.
    I hope her recovery is successful.

  7. Dear K, we just learned of your surgery. We wish you a full and speedy recovery. Hope you're able to run the hills again soon.

    Jed & Abby in MerryLand

  8. I am asking the POWER OF THE PAWS..
    to make a miracle happen for "K".
    I am a friend of the OP PAK... and I wanted to come visit you.
    I started to read your bloggy and I was blown away by your world.
    My wish is that you lives will get back to what your heart is longing for,,, and that is to share the awsome beauty and living experience, just like it used to be.
    OP PAK is right,, this is the most beautiful blog I have ever seen,

  9. Hi! Lovely photo of K up close. Very sweet! We know K is on a great path of recovery. Aw, R is seeming to be a wonderful riding pal. Can imagine R's tail on high speed!
    Snow capped mountains! Wow, weather is a changin'. Time is flying by.

    Hugs and snaggle-tooth kisses,
    Sierra Rose

  10. Very encouraging news about K, I think. She will be okay, as long as you help her to heal - which you are!

  11. I read about K over at The OP Pack's blog.

    K is beautiful as is R and your blog.

    I really hope K recovers very soon.

    I will be back to check on her progress.

  12. We sure hope K is healing up quickly. We are sending lots of healing vibes her way!

    Holly and Khady

  13. Snow and hail ! Don't really know what to say. It's a shock to the system.

  14. The OP Pack sent us over. We read about K's injury and surgery. She is so beautiful and brave. We are sending you the Power of the Paw from France (we have 4 woofie paws and 12 kitty ones). May your beautiful girl heal completely and once more romp with you in that spectacular setting!

    Woofs, Purrs and Hugs,
    Tommy, Tama-Chan, Sei-Chan, Bibi-Chan and their #1

  15. We are friends of the OP Pack. Our paws are crossed for K!
    We just love your blog header photo!

    Love ya lots
    Maggie and Mitch

  16. Great news about K - and, yes, it is awesome how the Power of the Paw comes together.

    Unfortunately, for us, the cold weather just has not settled in yet. All of our scootering gear was organized last night ready to run before dawn this morning, but it is simply too warm to try and do so. Maybe tomorrow . . .

  17. What a beautiful place you life in and what a caring Mom you are to your dogs.

    Lilly, Piper, Carrleigh and Ruairi

  18. Your post reflects your positive attitude..."black tornado" & "snail" (snow & hail mix) made me smile.
    Good wishes for K!

  19. The OP Pack led us here to your wonderful blog. We just love your photos. You and your dogs are truly blessed to be surrounded by such beauty. I hope K makes a full recovery and can go back to her usual routines with you.


  20. Sorry (for ourselves!) that we haven't visited in so long. Your photos are just magnificent - makes us miss the mountains so much! We just read about K on another blog and wanted to come over and give moral support. Our brother Jake broke a toe a few years ago, so we kinda know what you're going through. It was really tough on him 'cause his favorite exercise was swimming! We hope K makes a speedy recovery! Take care!
    The Road Dogs

  21. Hi there K,

    We just read about you from Holly and we are happy to meet you here.

    We join our furry friends in keeping our paws crossed for your recovery. You are doing a great job with the Pick a Toy game. Do keep yourself busy and you will be up and about in no time.

    Do visit us when you have time.

    Piappies Fudgie, Princess, Frappie, Mocha, Sugar, Wai-Pai & Wai-Max

  22. The OP Pack and Stella sent us over -- we are sending you tail wags and purrs for K's quick recovery!

  23. You and Bella have similar toys - she loves that Octopus (and the yellow ring looks familiar too). So many squeakers! Great photos... have a wonderful Saturday!

  24. That is some awesome toy selection there. Oscar has his "tickle trunk" full of stuffies. One can never have too many. Happy Pet Bloggers Hop Day!

  25. Hi I've just come over from The OP Pack where they told us about K, positive vibes are coming from the UK, beautiful place and photos, I'm following you so will pop in from time to time to see how you are all getting on.
    See Yea George xxx

  26. Hi KB,
    Glad to see that K is in good spirits and healing well. I liked your snow on peaks photos. I returned to Breck just in time for the snow on our peaks, too - but none yet in my yard. I'm in Denver now - it has finally cooled here, too. Bob fell of his bike and was unconscious just before our trip.

  27. The Power of the Paw!!! Hi, my name is Sasha, I found you through my pals, the OP pack. I hope we can be friends. I was sad to read of your surgery, but it seems you are doing better, so now I am happy. My Mommy has always dreamed of visiting Colorado. The pictures are so incredible. We can't wait to visit you soon. Take care and we will pray for a speedy recovery.

    licks and sniffs, Sasha

  28. wow. 2 weeks went by fast! go K!

  29. Hi there! I just heard abouts your K's hurt foot from my furends, the OP Pack. And I wanted to come over and tell you that we have ALL our paws crossed here (all 16 of them!) for K that soon she is back romping and rolling in the Rockies just like she used to! Plus, I'm sending my very best brindle wishes...and those are Most Pawerful!

    Oh, and guess what? I live in Collie-rado, too. Not up in the mountains like you but gosh, that would just be my dream come true! I could help R hunt down those pesky chipmunks!

    Wiggles & Wags,

  30. I think we've lost our Indian Summer, too. But there are awesome things in winter, too.

    I love the brain games your are doing with K during recovery. Didn't know if that would be adequate, but she seems to be doing just fine!


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