Pillars of Strength

Pillars of Strength

There is a blog that I follow called Romping and Rolling in the Rockies. It is a beautiful blog about a pair of labs and their human and their life in the Rocky Mountains. The photography is beautiful and their stories are wonderful.

Not to long ago, K the chocolate lab was diagnosed with osteosarcoma. I know all to well the heartbreak that KB is experiencing every day. But her strength is amazing as she and K enjoy every day to the fullest.

We have lost far too many dogs to this evil disease and the hounds of Greyhound Gardens send white light and strength to K and KB.


Bentley left us first. Osteosarcoma in the right hind leg just above the hock. He had bounced from his first home and it was thanks to he and Murphy that I met Karen. This boy was a true testament to spirit and dignity.


Phoebe was 11 years old when we brought her home. She was found roaming the county roads. A spirited old lady to the end, she had chondrosarcoma,

a tumor on her ribs.


Gracie broke our hearts. We adopted her at 10 years old and I can’t even begin to describe what a wonderful hound she was. Our friend described her as a classy dog. We only had her for 14 months before osteosarcoma of the right shoulder swept her away from us.


Barbie was turned into the Humane Society to be euthanized at 10 years old. They knew we did greyhound adoption and called to see if we would take her because they felt she was much to sweet. A tumor just above the right eye took her much to soon.


Cleo was a hoot and a half. She was 10 years old when she bounced from her home and came to the gardens belonging here from day 1. One day she just quit eating, so completely abnormal because everyday thirty minutes before meal time she would announce it was time. There was never any peace in the house until I fed them.

We gave it the 24 hour rule and took her into the vets. An ultrasound revealed a belly full of tumors. We had just a few days after diagnosis.


Fonzi was my very first greyhound. I adopted him when he was two years old and he is responsible for changing my life forever. At 10 years old he developed a tumor on his spine. A few days after diagnosis I had to say good-bye.


Duncan was six when he was bounced and came to the gardens for being aggressive. OK, he did have a grumpy side but he was also a very sweet and oh so beautiful. We lost him at 11 years old to osteosarcoma of the shoulder.

Sadly, these are only about 1/2 of our bridge babies. Most of the rest of them all made it to be glorious seniors.

An end to cancer would be a gift to all of us.

Painting the town red

Inaugeral Red Hat Society - 2005

In 2005 I decided that the ladies of the gardens needed to form their own Red Hat Society. The ladies over 10 wore red and the girls under 10 wore pink. All of the girls got their hats in Photoshop

Phoebe will forever be the Grande Dame.

Red hot Houndies - 2007

By 2007, the ladies became much more organized and internet savvy. They discovered Bow Wow Bonnets and each lady ordered at hat made especially for her.

They officially named their charter the Red Hot Houndies.

Fast forward to 2011. We live with party animals, what can I say. The girls ordered a few new bonnets and are ready to show them off.

Roxy, currently the queen
Jillian, the party girl
Flo, the fun police

Isn’t it time your girls joined a Red Hat Society?

Party time at the Pet Blog Hop!

It’s time for the Saturday Pet Blog Hop!

Please join us, it’s simple.

The Pet Blog Hop hosted by Life with Dogs, Two Little Cavaliers and Confessions of the Plume. Many, many thanks to the hosts, the Pet Blog Hop rocks.

Please join us, the rules are simple:

  1. Follow your three hosts
  2. Check out some of the our fellow bloggers, leave them a comment and tell them you are visiting from the Pet Blog hop
  3. Add your blog to the Linky
  4. Copy and paste the html code into your html editor


The black and blue crew

 Blender paved the path for our fostering experience. She was a very shy girl. When we went out to the kennel to pick out our first greyhound, she hovered at the back of the kennel, hoping not to be seen.
My youngest daughter, however, was not going to let that happen. As I was oohing and awing over all of the beautiful greyhounds, Holly had all but crawled into Blender’s kennel with her. The president of the group was so impressed, that after I took Fonzi home she called and asked if we would be willing to foster Blender.
 I really credit Holly for making Blender the wonderful do she is today. Holly spent hours and hours next to Blender’s safety spot in the kennel. She read to her, talked to her, watched TV with her.
After about two months in solitude, Holly came out to join us one night in the living room. I’ll never forget seeing Blender peak around the corner and bark. She wanted her Holly girl. It only took a couple of nights of that behavior and Blender began joining the family.
OK, I failed my first foster experience. Blender pretty much runs the roost at 12 years old.
For a little while, we were a revolving door for blue greyhounds. You don’t see very many of them, but as a gaggle of grays, they were really beautiful together.
This is Dezi. He wasn’t with us very long when he joined his wonderful forever mama down in Klamath Falls.
Danny on the right and Gracie in the middle were the corner stones for the blue crew. 
Mai Tai on the left was this spunky little blue brindle girl. She was placed into a home by another volunteer, so I never kept up with her whereabouts. I suspect though that she kept her family laughing all of the time. She was quite the little ham.

Tomorrow, the walk down memory lane takes an unexpected fork in the road. Come on back.

Forever family

Every greyhound that came to Greyhound Gardens was part of the family, lock, stock and barrel. We loved them like they were our own.
I’ve always done my best to keep track with as many as possible. This is Dude. He was young, handsome and big.
He went on to be the best service dog ever and was renamed Gilly. Still is. 
He had this fabulous overbite. Talk about a nice dog.
And then there was Otis. Oh to be da dog. Another young, very gentle giant. Unless of course you were small and furry.
We placed him in a home with a couple in their 40s. Apparently, that wasn’t what he had in mind. He came back two weeks later because he howled all night long. Now that was news to me, he slept like a baby here.
This family with four children came along. Otis wanted kids. He loved those kids. They had a boy with autism and he was the perfect companion.
Shortly after we placed him, we got a call from the mom. She wanted to know if she would ever go to the bathroom alone again.
Oops, open door policy.
Otis totally rocked that families world. Including the dad. One Saturday morning the dad was having coffee on the back deck while Dude was doing his morning racetrack routine around the back yard. He finished running, went up onto the deck, started having a seizure and died before anything could be done. The dad even tried canine CPR.
That was a heart breaker, Otis was young, only 3 years old.
Ah yes, be still my beating heart Danté. All greyhounds are beautiful, but secretly, I adore the cow dogs. There is just something about white and black.
For all of his beautiful white and black, Dante´s personality was a match. What a cool dog. I seriously tried to hide him in my closet. I never ever mentioned his name when I talked to the president of the group, hoping that she would forget I had him.
Wasn’t meant to be. Danté went to a wonderful home, he was a prince among princes and lived like a king. He was renamed Darby. At a very young nine years old, Darby lost his fight to osteo.
I’m not gonna lie, I cried right along with his dads.

The president of the adoption group knew me, knew me well and knew how to work me. She knew it was gonna be hard getting Danté’s leash out of my tight grip.
Very coyly she slipped Gracie’s leash into my hand as she firmly snagged Danté’s leash.
Gracie was ten. She clearly was not happy with her momma’s work situation and made her statement in the house. Since we are such home bodies, we agreed to take her and see if she behaved a little differently. 
She was ours and oh how we loved her. A dear friend of ours described her as a classy dog and she was.
We were robbed, 14 very short months osteo once again reared it’s ugly head. We were devastated and still miss our little Gracie girl.
Hang in there, I have a reason for my walk down memory lane. You’ll just have to come back to find out why.


Bentley • April 7, 1997 – April 6, 2004

November is National Canine Cancer Awareness month.

As I thought back, I realized that the evil beast has taken way to many of our babies.

Phoebe • October 1, 1991 – November 27, 2005

Gracie • September 15, 1994 – March 25, 2006

Cleo • December 22, 1995 – March 28, 2008

Fonzi • October 4, 1999 – February 10, 2009

Barbie • April 16, 1996 – October 13, 2007

Duncan • April 22, 1999 – May 14, 2010

And so, as I looked a little farther, I learned that one in three dogs will be diagnosed with canine cancer.

The National Canine Cancer Foundation is raising money for research grants to help find a cure.

Who knows, maybe if we can find a cure in canines, we can find a cure in humans.

Flight of the greyhound

Years ago, after we sent Gracie to the bridge, a yellow swallowtail butterfly appeared in our yard the following summer. I was certain that Gracie had returned to the gardens.

Just last week I saw a pair of butterflies chasing around the white flower bush thingy that grows so well. Gracie had brought Cleo home with her this year.

Thursday we sent Maddie to the bridge. I was running the dogs on Friday noon, and to my delight, I saw three butterflies chasing around the bush.

I know this one is Maddie. Maddie had the softest coat of any greyhound, ever. Check out the fur around the body of this butterfly.

Hey Mom! When the going gets tough…

The tough get going!

Well almost. We think it makes more sense just to bury our heads in our paws and pretend it isn’t happening.

Let us demonstrate how you too can bury your head in your paws.

And the countdown continues… 22 days.

Pasha prefers the whole schnauz cover up. Nothing can get through, not even the littlest things.

Duncan puts his whole head in a lock. Protecting the brain from the drain is of utmost importance.

Picker has placed his nose in his armpit, a place most people won’t dare to go.

And the forever amazing Gracie has wrapped her little paw right around the end of her nose and over her mouth reminding you not to speak of evil, it just isn’t professional.

And if it gets too bad, Jori recommends putting your head between your knees and just kiss your hairy ass good-bye!

But you had better not ’cause we need you.

December 12

Gracie joined us after having a few house-breaking issues. We brought her home and were quite surprised when on the ride home she pee’d in the backseat. We never had another problem after that, she was the perfect dog.