I’m excited about 2012 and I hope you are too!

I would like to thank all my clients for bringing their fabulous poochies to the Lodge in 2011. It was a fun year and I know 2012 will be the same.

I mentioned this on the Lodge Facebook page, but it bears repeating:

Dogs give us the gift of knowledge that we didn’t have before, and we can share that gift with others. In this way, our dogs live forever, giving in ever-widening circles.

I find the above especially inspiring when dealing with my blue Schip Tripp who has a multitude of health problems that include congestive heart failure (CHF), pulmonary hypertension, and seizures. I have joined a CHF on-line group that has helped me understand (and feel less alone about) Tripp’s health issues. There’s another great group – the Guardian Angels Epilepsy site — www.canine-epilepsy-guardian-angels.com/site_map.htm — that is also very helpful. If you have a dog with any of these problems, check out these groups. They are great resources.

Rescuing dogs can bring a wealth of surprises, both good and not-so-good (but personally, I think that rescuing is fantastic and worthwhile no matter what the surprises). Tripp is a rescue from a horrible puppy mill and I knew of his health problems before adopting him. Some folks aren’t so lucky. But even purebreds can have health issues, which is why it’s SO IMPORTANT to do your research before buying a purebred dog. Tripp was used as a stud dog, and his health issues are genetic, so who knows how many Schipperkes are in the U.S. with Tripp’s same health issues. It upsets me to even think about it . . . for me, being involved in the “dog world” via the Lodge, agility, and volunteering with the Whatcom Humane Society is all part of that ever-widening circle of education. It’s important to share knowledge and contribute day-by-day to the welfare of dogs (and other animals as well). We are lucky to have so many caring people and groups in our area: WHS, Old Dog Haven, WeSnip, AHS, Seattle Purebred Dog Rescue, and others. If you’re looking to widen the circle of care, please join me in contributing to these groups via time or money. Thank you so much, and have a fantastic year.