Tuesday, April 29, 2008

More morning walks

We've been very busy at work lately so I haven't been able to get out to do much on the "fun" front. We also had to take a break from our morning walks while Tilly's stitches were still in; I just felt too guilty taking Dora and leaving Til at home...and I don't trust Tilly all by her lonesome either! We did go to the beach with Tilly on a lead once, but it was a lot of work and we decided to just skip it for a few more days. I took them down again a couple of days later with the intention of having Tilly on the lead again but she squiggled out of my grasp and immediately went into the water. So we've just been walking, stitches in and all. Mary tried to take the stitches out the other evening, but Tilly threw an impressive hissy fit and we were only able to get three of the seven. Vet is up next Wednesday and we're going in to have them deal with it LOL

It's been fabulous walking in the morning before work again. The conditions have been perfect - perfectly flat Gulf, beautiful light rising in the sky and just a hint of breeze to relieve the stuffiness. I'm always amazed at how different the light is from day to day and from the beginning to the end of our walks.

The turnaround point for our walks usually

Looking to the West this morning

The dogs are really loving getting back out, too. Tilly has been exploring the dunes and yesterday she found a whole spine that she dragged back to us. Dora promptly started to take it off her and Til ran around and around, losing vertebrae after vertebrae until she had this very small, sad prize!

Today the prize was a skanky cuttlefish bone

Dora is always very pleased with herself

She's always the first one in the water

...although not for long!

The car is still a source of many cute moments

As usual, Tilly is finding many ways to get into trouble at home. She is a total counter surfer, a well known Ridgeback trait that neither of our other girls have had. We were so spoiled! So now we have to barricade the kitchen or she pulls stuff off the counters in search of just one more morsel

She daily tries to convince us that the barricades really aren't necessary

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Cats RULE...and a wedding

Our cats are teaching MatildaLily her right and proper place in the household and she is actually beginning to learn. Boof is a right little dictator and puts up with nothing from her, but allows her to approach him and give a cuddle when she is being calm.

I was trying to take a photo of Tilly, but Boof kept coming over and pushing her out of the way!

She played nonchalant and pretended like she had an itch that needed scratching - she didn't really get pushed aside by a CAT!

Dora and Boof have no such power plays

Til then thought maybe she'd go see Lobo, who was relaxing on the spa. As soon as he saw her try to get her paws up he was in action and booted her off.

He then paced along the edge, reclaiming his throne

Tilly may be growing up and finding her own way a lot of the time, but ultimately, she has a favourite place with her big sister

Hard to believe that she can also be this naughty

This past Saturday I had the huge pleasure of photographing a wedding for an excellent couple, Jeni & Matt. The Exmouth weather was perfect, the couple were wonderful, their guests were fabulous and the locations were dreamy. The whole story is on my Kristin Anderson Photography blog

Friday, April 18, 2008

Fresh fish & a Roadtrip!

It's not very often that one of our cats get a mention all to himself lately so thought I'd share Harry's newest happy place - under the bush in front of our front door. He'll snag his claws into the stem and just kind of hang there for hours, watching the world go by. He's too cute!

Dave brought home a big snapper the other day for our dinner. It's the first time we've had fresh fish in quite a while. One of the downsides of our busy season is that we don't have much time to hunt.

The kitties know when Dad has fresh fish, though, and beeline for the kitchen where they look pathetic and cry incessantly for tidbits. In this mood, they even let Tilly come in close!

Wednesday took the Girls, our friend Mary and me to the garden spot of Carnarvon. For those who haven't been there, I can't recommend never going enough. It's just not an attractive town, has a bad vibe, is kinda icky and generally unpleasant. It does have some lovely plantations and you can buy local fruit and veg there, so that's an upside, I guess. But if I never have to go back, I'll be happy.

Why did we go? Dora needed to have an xray to make sure that she didn't have any bladder stones. The vet can't do them up here at the moment as the head vet is very much pregnant with twins and doesn't come up to Exmouth now and the second vet only does basic consults every other Wednesday (more or less). It's a little frustrating to have to drive 4 hours each way for something that should be able to be done here, but there you are. Since we needed to go down for Dora, I asked if we could also have Tilly desexed while we were there. She's still shy of six months, but they said it wouldn't be a problem, so at least we only had to head to Carnarvon once.

We left Exmouth around 0530 so we could get to vet's as early as possible in case Dora, too, needed surgery. It was pitch black when we left but the sunrise brought beautiful light and made the newly green areas beautiful. It looked like there was still a lot of rain bands to the East and the cloud cover provided a gorgeous ceiling.

The Lyndon River, just south of the Coral Bay turnoff, is still running pretty hard across the road.

Dora is a great car dog - she simply lays down and snoozes most of the way. Tilly is not a great car dog - she constantly runs around the car, chases imaginary beings across the back window, sits on Dora, barks at Dora when Dora won't play, chews whatever she can get a hold of, pushes into the front, cries, whines, talks...for four hours. She even convinced Mary to let her sit on Mary's lap for a little while!

She found our "puppy proof box" a great place to stand to drool on me, too - I guess next time I should flip it over!

Once we dropped the dogs at the vet, Mary and I headed into town to do some shopping and browsing. There is a Target Country, a Woolies supermarket, a newsagency and a Rockman's clothing store LOL I did buy a new pair of shorts for work. After an hour of cruising the shops, we decided it was time for a coffee so hit a sidewalk cafe. The scenery and passersby weren't interesting enough to dawdle so we wandered back to the car and decided to go to lunch!

One thing I will say for Carnarvon is that they have an excellent restaurant out at the working marina. The Harbourside Cafe is top notch with a menu that even I found multiple mouthwatering items on.

We ended up not being able to make a decision so ordered three or four things and just sat there in the pleasant early afternoon indulging in a feast. Everything was excellent and we totally overate - but it was worth it!

The restaurant has a lovely view across the canals and even the parking area has a swaying palm.

After lunch, we headed back to vet's as we hadn't heard anything. They had completed Tilly's surgery and she was recovering on a comfy dog bed, but Dora had just been put under GA for her xray. I was a little concerned as we did want to drive back that afternoon and it was already 1pm. The vet had told us in the morning that she was going to do Dora's xray first thing in case they needed to do surgery and I don't know why she didn't do it that way.

They also clipped Dora's nails and weighed both girls. Tilly is growing fast and is now 23 kilos (about 50 pounds!). Dora is doing great and is down to 44.28 kgs. She's got another 8 kgs to go, but we are on the path.

We also found out that Dora will have to go on a very strict, special diet as her urine test showed things were all messed up...she had a ph of 9+ when it's meant to be about 5. So she begins a very strict new regime of canned prescription food starting on Wednesday and running for four weeks. She's not allowed to have even a morsel of other food during that time. After four weeks, she changes to a different Rx food and the vet says she needs to be on that for life...it's a huge change and we'll see how we go.

Her allergies are also acting up because of all the pollen in the air from the masses of vegetation that's popped up due to the recent rains. So she's back on special shampoos three times a week, ear drops (which is always a joy) and special lotion every day to try to alleviate some of the discomfort. My poor multi-million dollar, spotty girl!

On the upside, luckily Dora did not have any stones so ended up being able to simply wake up and come home. She was a little groggy in the car

and Tilly was much better behaved on the way home, gotta love those drugs!

Once home, Tilly was not happy. She ran away into the backyard and promptly laid flat in a mud puddle. Since the vet said it was important that she not get the stitches wet or dirty, I was really impressed. It took both Dave and I to corral her so I could scoop her up and carry her inside. Once there she was much better, so I don't know what got into her.

Dora slept all night and most of the next day, but Tilly showed no signs of being sore or slowing down Thursday - she was back to her energetic, crazy self. We are trying to keep her a little calmer than normal for at least a few days to give the stitches some chance of surviving!