Thursday, 22 September 2016

puppy news

Well well well, whaddeya know - there is puppy news in the air.  I've been feeling puppy broody for a long time now, so it's very exciting to be looking forward to welcoming puppies from Tuuli and the handsome Arvo before Halloween arrives.

Tuuli and I had a very quick visit to the Netherlands to meet Arvo and his lovely family.  We had a great, if brief, visit and I'm already looking forward to going back someday.  The coffee cannot possibly be better (thanks Ron!), but hopefully the weather, at least, will be as good as it was while I was there.  And the pretty photo above is thanks to Mel.

You can see more photos of Arvo on my website.

See you in a few weeks!

Sunday, 10 July 2016

happy birthday to the mailat puppies

My blog has been sadly neglected for far too long, but as Wimbledon season rolls around, the Mailat puppies come up to their first birthday.  They were born during the men's semi-final matches and thereby earned their baby names of the top male and female tennis players of the time and they will hit one-year-old during the men's final today ....just in case you understand Finnish and recognised the word "mailat" and were wondering why they are called tennis racquets....

Here are the little tennis racquets at one year old.  I have an unpublished half-finished blog showing these puppies going off to their new homes with comparison photos at about 14 weeks old.  However, as I didn't manage to find my way clear to finishing and posting that one, you can have those too for a nice little comparison of 2 months, almost-4 months and 12 months old.

The first puppy out the door back then was Loki, which was fitting considering he was going only 20 minutes up the road, but I'm posting in birth order, as I normally do, so first up is Siinto who was already 11 weeks old before he left because his new owners, Michaela & Chris, had one or two things to do before picking him up.  Like getting married for one.  And like moving house for another.  You can see he was already considerably bigger and more bear-like.

Infindigo Mailat Siinto

Pet name Siinto

Laughing boy



























Infindigo Mailat Koru

Pet name Koru

Koru heading off to Scotland with the Sheas at 8 weeks, growing up and then followed by one year old - he hasn't actually changed a bit!  A wee bit bigger, perhaps...

Another pup having fun at the beach

Ears up!  ... but not for long :-)

Just under 1 year old - a fine handsome Scottish dog

Quite the poser

Infindigo Mailat Loki

Pet name Loki

Loki getting ready to run up the road to Exeter with Heather & Ethan then a couple of rare moments of stillness and a not-so-rare moment of silliness.

A bit less wiggly at 14 weeks practicing his show stand

Visiting at just under one year - good as gold
















































Infindigo Mailat Ulla

Pet name Ulla

Ulla on her way down the road to Plymouth with Tom & Leisha then being cute.

Gorgeous smiley girl

Up to no good with the garden hose

Just under one year old in the bluebells
Looking innocent as can be - another puppy who has lost a coat

Infindigo Mailat Jaakkoppi

Pet name Jake

Jake heading off to his new home in Bristol with two of the four O'Sullivans and then a growing up boy.

Having fun getting mucky at the beach

A couple of hours later at the pub - miraculously clean!

Smiley boy at 12 months

Losing his puppy coat already

Thursday, 31 December 2015

happy birthday to the juhla pups

Today, new year's eve, marks the first birthday of Tuuli's Juhla litter.

No longer puppies, they are all growing into lovely adult dogs now.  Er ... did I say adult?  That might be a tad ambitious.  Rather than a serene adulthood, their owners are more likely to have at least another 12 months of puppiness coming to them.  Looks like some of them are a bit more grownup and mature than others!

Juhla Pikkuveli  -  Tux

 Juhla Eevi  -  Eevi

Juhla Ismo  -  Malaki 

Juhla Kaija  -  Kaija

Juhla Niko  -  Niko


Thursday, 8 October 2015

wheel of life

Inevitably the wheel of life keeps turning. 

I would like to share with you some more of the joy currently in the world partly because of Neka.  Here are her newest great-grand-puppies at 6 weeks old at Arianrhod kennel in Wales.  Their dam is Glenchess Nightwish for Arianrhod and their sire is Infindigo Persikka Kuura.


There is one boy in the litter, wolf sable in colour like his mum:

And there are 3 girls:

Little cuties every one.  Congratulations to Tarja and her owners Vikki & Trevor on a lovely litter.  I am looking forward to seeing them grow up.

Monday, 28 September 2015

goodbye to Neka

Elbereth Onnekas for Infindigo ShCM
25 March 2004 – 28 September 2015

Neka at 2 Years - Photo by Farlap
At 10 Years
I don’t know how to even begin to say goodbye to Neka.  Words are usually my thing, but for this there are none.  They are too dry, too small, utterly inadequate.  I always say that having to let them go is the price we pay for the years of joy our pets give us.  It is a heavy price, but they give us so much.  It is right and fitting that the sorrow of losing them should be profound, but that doesn’t make it any easier.

Neka was my first dog and my heart dog.  She was cheeky, full of fun, so clever and with a great sense of humour.  She went everywhere with me that she possibly could, and I will miss her so much that I don’t know how to face losing her.

As a youngster she was naughty, full of energy and mischief and specialised in escaping out the front door at every opportunity.  Early one morning we had to extract her from the kitchen of neighbours who inadvertently left their door open and had an unexpected visitor join them for breakfast.  On several occasions I caught up with her because she was busy bouncing in circles around the neighbourhood fearless, unperturbed cat.  She was nosey and more than a little stubborn, and she made us laugh every day.
Neka 9 weeks
Neka's First Winter
As a showdog she was always talented, enthusiastic and frequently comical in her performance.  She helped to put Finnish Lapphunds on the map in south west England, doing an enormous amount of winning in Any Variety Not Separately Classified classes when there were few or no breed classes at open shows.  In fact, on 2 April 2006 she became the first Finnish Lapphund in the UK to win the Show Certificate of Merit.  Everyone always knew when Neka was strutting her stuff in the ring because she shouted all about it at every opportunity.  She qualified for Crufts every one of her 11 years and attended most of those she qualified for, her top Crufts win being the best Veteran Bitch in 2013.   

She gave us 16 beautiful puppies in two litters, one of which was a litter of 9 – the largest litter of Lapphund puppies born in the UK to date.  She was a gentle, patient and attentive mother and went on to be a doting granny and great-granny to every litter of puppies we had since.  She was always ready to step in and help out with cleaning up or with keeping the youngsters happy and entertained.  Our puppies have all been immeasurably lucky to have had her in their lives, and they give their families so much pleasure due in large part to her influence. 
Playing with the Puppies - age 11
In middle age, Neka suffered a lengthy bout of pancreatitis.  She almost didn’t survive it, and it took a full 18 months for her to recover.  Nevertheless, she eventually bounced back and went on to take up running with me, a sport she enjoyed until after her 10th birthday when arthritis in one paw started to slow her down.  Her brush with illness did age her, however, and by the time of her 11th birthday, she was older than her years.  In recent months she was declining noticeably, slowing down and becoming rather blind and quite deaf.

While I was in Canada visiting my family, a mild stomach bug triggered another attack of pancreatitis.  Neka fought it the whole time I was away, but the day I returned she worsened considerably.  With suspected tumours, in pain and too weak to stand, she had no fight left.  Our wonderful vets treated her symptoms aggressively with intravenous fluid, heavy pain medication and antibiotics, but she didn't respond and they were unable to get her very high temperature under control.  

I was so grateful that I got back in time to say goodbye and be with her at the end.  I was just sorry I didn't get the opportunity to take her to the beach one last time - her favorite place.  On the 6th anniversary of the death of Anniebear, Neka was given sleep.  I hope Annie was there with her too.

We picked up 8-week-old Neka the day after we moved into this house, so we have never known a time here without her.  It is too quiet now.  Empty.  The other dogs are subdued and don’t even bark when we arrive home without the watchdog of their pack here to raise the alarm.  And they don't even know when mealtimes are anymore because that was her job too.

But Neka will live on in her wonderful puppies, her grand-puppies and through all the generations to follow.  And she will be forever young and full of life in my heart. Run free, my Moo, until I catch up with you.  I hope there are beaches and snow where you are.
Age 6 Years
Age 10 Years Still Loving the Beach