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Friday, May 3, 2013

The Labraduo

We've had an incredibly snowy springtime, as you've seen from my photos. It has been a record year for spring snow but it's not as extraordinary as you might think. We rely on spring snow to feed our forests and flowers, and to help prevent forest fires. You might remember the terrible fire year that 2012 was in Colorado. We are all hoping that these big spring snows will help mitigate that danger.
In that spirit, we mountain dwellers appreciate the snow, even if we are (secretly) eagerly waiting for warm and sunny spring weather!

The Labraduo and I took a sunset hike through the snowy meadow and forest last night. Due to the stormy weather this spring, I've rarely had good sunlight to photograph them together in the evening. And, as you know, R goes on the trails with the Runner in the morning so he's "unavailable" for photos then!

The two of them have developed a strong bond. It seems as if they've worked out their small differences, like Shyla's intense play style, and they love being together.
Shyla has remained a petite Labrador. Indeed, most people who meet her for the first time assume that she's a mix of Lab and something smaller. You can really see the difference between the two in these photos. R weighs 13 pounds more than Shyla, and R is not a big Lab (he's 58 pounds).
It's been a little tough throughout R's enforced restricted activity to let his elbow heal. It's taken close to 6 weeks so far, and we are just now starting to allow him to be off-leash for short periods. Shyla seems to miss playing with him in the forest immensely.
Indeed, this morning, Shyla suddenly launched herself off a boulder when she spotted the Runner and R approaching from a distance. She was hoping that R could play with her... but the footing was too tricky with the partially melted and frozen snow so R remained on leash.
We hope that R's return to full speed will be soon. I stretch his elbow daily, and I've taught him to wave with each paw to help maintain his range of elbow motion. We're giving him regular glucosamine injections plus oral glucosamine and other supplements daily. With all those things in his favor, we're hoping to put off an arthroscopic "clean-out" surgery for his elbow for a long time. I'm cautiously optimistic!

Now, perhaps, we can have some springtime!


  1. They are such a gorgeous pair of pups and seem to have a great regard for each other.

    Your photo skills with them are just excellent! The first one with R resting his head on Shyla is wonderful! Oh, all of them are!


    Jo, Stella and Zkhat

  2. Fingers crossed for R!

  3. Here's to "R"'s elblow fully healing and to your spring finally arriving! It's been gorgeous here in Central Ohio the last few days-sunny, clear and just about 70.

  4. Photography superb!!They look so good together, the icicles, and snow to give spring fluid to all things growing,I hope R's arm heals to 100% very soon ( nearly put the $ sign there!!). Greetings from Jean.

  5. We were thinking about you with the bad fires in the LA area. We hope the snow has done its work to help keep the fires away.

    R and Shyla ARE small labs, but oh how handsome and beautiful!!!

    Woos - Phantom, Thunder, Ciara, and Lightning

  6. What a pair! I love the outline of R's ear highlighted by the sun.

    Bart had a hydrotherapy/treadmill treatment today which he loved - sore hips. He LOVED it! Ruby has a bad elbow and we may give her a shot at the treadmill, too. Both are getting the glucocimine injections as well...

  7. There is quite a difference in their sizes!

    XXXOOO Daisy, Bella & roxy

  8. Wow we didn't realize the size difference. We thought they were almost identical.
    Benny & Lily

  9. I am so happy that both R and Shyla can enjoy the beautiful snow- each in their own way.
    We keep our paws crossed for R to keep getting better.

  10. Such beautiful photos,
    I love the last one. I love the motion shots you get....

    Bert and My Vickie

  11. Great Pictures!
    Hope they can play soon again.
    Our puppies grow very fast and they will open their Eyes in few days

  12. The two of you are so handsome together, Shyla and R ♥

    Love ya lots,
    Mitch and Molly

  13. Both your labs really are on the small side. A good friend has a large field-bred chocolate lab and in his prime, he weighed close to 100 pounds! And he was reasonably slim compared to most of the labs in my area (that don't have the benefit of a mountain-biking momma ;-) ) Shyla is only a few pounds heavier than my larger corgi!

  14. It's nice to see them bonding. I'm sure as Shyla matures that she and R will find a good playtime balance. Such a long recovery for poor R. Thank goodness you have the patience and dedication to enforce low activity and allow him to heal.

    Mango Momma

  15. Fingers crossed for your boy R! But it's always such a joy when 2 pups are connected to one another--It's always my biggest wish when we have newcomers to our household, that they find a connection with one of the dogs.

  16. We can't stop smiling over here. Seeing the two of them together just makes us want to shout love, love, love from your mountain tops!

    We too are hoping that Spring arrives soon for you. We're eagerly anticipating and waiting to see what your camera lens will find. We just love the photo journey you take us on.

    Lily Belle & Muffin

  17. I never realized the difference in size before!! Sure hope that R's elbow is feeling better and better!! I apologize for not being by lately...we have been on the road and just got home! Hope you get some springtime soon!!

  18. Those of us south of you appreciate, too, the benefits of this snowfall as we are already experiencing fires. But coming from Chicago, the idea of snow into May gives momma a bit of cabin fever.

    We love the photos of R and Shyla together. Always makes our hearts sing to see the interactions of a balanced and loving pack.

    Are you giving fish oil as well? The WDA has been on it for about 2 months now and it really seems to help joint movement.

  19. I wish you springtime and healthy dogs for a while! I am sure R and Shyla are hoping for the same thing!


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