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Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Moose and Shyla's Spirit

The much-heralded snow storm fizzled into a small storm that gave us only about 4" of fresh snow. When Shyla and I headed out into the forest this morning, we were met by a familiar trio of moose. They include the mother moose who charged me last week, this year's calf, and last year's calf. Last year's calf is distinctive - he's a male but only his left antler developed correctly so he's easily recognizable.

This morning, I saw the moose early so I got Shyla and me well away from them and took a few photos as they made a semi-circle around us. This is mom - the moose who tried to kill me last week. Actually, it only felt that way - if she'd truly wanted to kill me, I'd be dead.
This is her yearling calf with one prominent antler.  I don't know how common it is for a yearling calf to be hanging out with his mom and her new calf. I know from my trail cameras that he spent the summer on his own. He explored in several directions from our neck of the woods but always returned. He seems to be helping protect the calf. Every time I see the trio, mom is in front of the calf and big brother is behind the calf. It seems like great added protection for the youngest family member.

I couldn't upload my photo of this year's calf because my internet is barely working. However, it's a male who is about 2/3 of the size of his mom and older brother. He and his older brother appeared to be playing together, head butting each other gently and then the calf galloping like a happy puppy.

I actually wish that this trio would move along. They scare me because the mother is so unpredictably aggressive. I am constantly scanning the forest for moose, and I've been requiring Shyla to stay next to me - no exploring off to the sides of the trails - until I figure out where the moose are each day.

Today, after we saw the moose trio and moved far away from them, Shyla could play in the fresh snow.
I thank my lucky stars for Shyla's amazing spirit these days. I've been in so much pain that having her make me smile every day is a gift.
I love her more than I ever dreamed I would which is sweet solace for my spirit.

I am still working on how to reduce my pain (no oral medicine or PT has helped). I'm setting up spinal steroid injections, and I'm meeting with my surgeon. The wheels of the medical machine turn slowly. Meanwhile, I am gradually being beaten down by the seven weeks of intense pain I've experienced.


  1. Oh KB, these photos are sooo beautiful and clear.. Its almost as though we are right there,, hearing the momma moose breathe!
    I think big brother moose is doing a good job,,, of protecting baby and momma.
    Of course were glad when they move on too. The photo of Shyla- reminds me of long ago when I was a young pup, and could run like that too.

    We hope something helps you KB,,, something to help your pain.
    We love you

  2. We love the joyous look on Shyla's face as she bounds through the snow! It's easy to see why she brings you such love and happiness. You must be a very strong person to endure that much pain—we hope your latest treatment brings you relief.

  3. Nothing wears you out like constant pain. I'm so sorry that you are having all this. That yearling moose is a handsome guy.

  4. I love the photo of Shyla. And the moose who doesn't want to kill you is beautiful too. Hope you get an answer to ease the pain in your back

  5. I love seeing Shyla in the snow having fun. We don't get snow where we live so I can only imagine what my two Golden Retrievers would do.

    I hope you find something that reduces your back pain soon.

  6. Shyla is so beautiful and wonderful...!

    I hope you'll get relief from new treatments, and soon. I'm keeping you in my thoughts. Take care --


  7. 7 weeks, seems like a lifetime. and any new ideas that might help will be so worth trying. Have you had the steroid injections before? Bit busy down here, well, VERY... is more like it, Hugh's cataract surgery went well, no driving for 3 to 5 weeks( oh dear) until he sees the surgeon. Very bloodshot and swollen, all done in 30 minutes. Hugs and more from down here.

  8. I'm glad you've got the snow to help keep track (literally) of the moose...and I hope VERY much that the steroid injections will bring relief. Seems to be a very popular treatment these days, so it must work for many people. I will be keeping my fingers crossed that you will soon have relief.
    Well done, Shyla - you have an important job and you are doing it brilliantly!

  9. You have a gift, too, of being able to smile at things even when life has handed you some terrible things. It is so admirable.

    It hurts to hear that the pain is beating you down. Having serious mental health problems means that it's the emotional toll that chronic pain causes that scares me. (I have seen others have to live with that every day.) I am so sorry, KB.

  10. Are moose only a worry at this time of year because of calves, or is it all year? I'm glad you have Shyla to love you! :)

  11. Thank you, Shyla, for always making your mom smile. We sure hope something works soon for you, KB.

  12. isn't that the best when you are the furst dog wo leaves some pawprint in the fresh snow? that's a little like being a great discovereer, like Mr. Columbus :o)

  13. We are so sorry you are having rouble finding relief from your pain. Hopefully the injections will help. So glad Shyla helps you smile
    Mr Bailey, Hazel & mabel

  14. You better stay away from those darn moose. Beautiful Shyla!
    Lily & Edward
    Pee S how about acupuncture? No riding for 2 weeks, Epsom salt baths

  15. Shyla ALWAYS brings smiles with her! We sure hope those medicine wheels start turning faster and in the right direction for you.

  16. It is truly amazing and terribly frustrating at how slow the medical wheel can turn. We hop the injections or something can be done to relieve your intense pain.

    Those moose would scare us too - so glad that Shyla is so well-trained.

  17. I'm glad you have Shyla and your lovely home to distract a bit from your pain.

    I would be even gladder is you DIDN'T have to deal with the pain. Pain is exhausting and kinda terrifying. Thinking about you with love, concern, and good wishes.

  18. KB, so sorry to hear the pain is currently winning. I hope you can turn the tables soon. Am glad you had a less stressful moose encounter today!

  19. I'm so sorry you're having so much pain!

    I would be terrified with those moose near. I don't plan you for being spooky!

    Shyla is so, so gorgeous. Seeing her makes me smile!

  20. So sorry to hear about your pain. Shyla is doing all she can to lift your spirits. Millie & Walter have their paws crossed that you can get some relief soon.

  21. I'm so sorry you are in so much pain. I've recently found out about PEMF which is supposed to be good for pain. Have you ever heard of it?
    Glad you were able to find a space away from the moose so Shyla could play.


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