A blast from the past

Have digital camera, will photograph dogs. The digital Canon Rebel hadn’t even been released. Digital cameras were still in their infancy. I was so proud of my Canon 10d. Loved that camera to pieces and I was always out in the backyard with the camera and the doggies.

I originally wrote this post on May 9, 2009. The photos are all from 2003 to 2004. Blender is the only greyhound we have left from the original pack. Wow, so many things have changed.

I love looking back at some of my old photos, they remind of all of the joy our dogs bring us every day.

Celebrity Sightings at the Garden Bistro


Lucee Fields from The Flying Nun

Phoebe, Edie, Blender and Murphy

Phoebe Quaid, Murphy Harris, Blender Glenn and Edie Shepard, cast of The Right Stuff

Village puppy

And last but not least, Puppy Nicholas from The Shining.

Another race finished, another final sunset

Ten and a half years ago the conversation began something like this, “I would like to adopt a greyhound.”

“I have two beautiful black dogs that were just returned. Would you like to meet them?”

“I was really hoping for a brindle and I only want one.”

“OK. These guys are really sweet, why don’t you just meet them.”


Two hours later, I met Karen for the the first time when I drove the greyhounds down to her work to meet her. The two boys charmed the sox off of her, just as I knew they would. We arranged to screen her house the next morning.

Karen called me an hour later and wanted to screen right then and there.

The minute I drove in her driveway, my life changed, Karen’s life changed and the life of the two boys that had just lost their home changed forever and for the better.

Karen still wanted only one greyhound. Bentley was older and she liked that, but Murphy shared her birthday. They ran around the acre and took in all of the smells.

It took Karen probably 30 minutes to decide which greyhound she would adopt.

She took them both and a few months later my two greyhounds and I joined the pack.

Murphy and Bentley were joined at the hip. They were very happy to call Greyhound Gardens their home. Sadly, we lost Bentley to osteosarcoma two years later.

Bentley and Murphy

Murphy continued to blossom. He was a really good dog. He didn’t demand attention, but quietly wandered up to get his ears scratched.

He loved to lay in the freshly mowed grass and munch on rich piles of grass thrown out by the lawn mower.

He always had a fabulous appetite. Always. In fact, I don’t ever remember Murphy getting sick.

He would stand out in the back yard and bark a few times at the wind and when it was meal time, he would hurry us along with a few forceful barks. He was content, never worried.

On June 1 Murphy turned 14 years old. He wasn’t a kid anymore. His face was completely white and his hind-end was starting to show some weakness.

Everyday we would watch for a dramatic change. But everyday, he would walk outside, get his drink of water, wander around the acre and come in to find his favorite cushion and take a nap.

He was showing a few signs of senility, but overall, he was a trooper.

Today we said good-bye. Murphy started to run for the back door to go outside first thing this morning. When he reached the kitchen door, his hind legs gave out and there was no bringing them back.

With heavy hearts, we fixed him a delicious breakfast of Timber’s meatloaf and took him for a drive in the country.

It was a good last morning with Murphy.

I am certain that it wasn’t long before Murphy hooked back up with Bentley. They are running in the green fields together once again. Their race at Greyhound Gardens is officially retired.

Murphy, we are eternally grateful to you and my heart will forever be filled with the love and joy you brought us.

Premier Smokey – June 1, 1998 to November 8, 2012

Grumpy old men

Barney and Murphy

Barney will be 14 in December and Murphy turned 14 in June. It’s true, they don’t seem to have the patience with the other dogs they once had. Good news, (well sort of), Barney is completely toothless and harmless and Murphy is nearly toothless and harmless.

I am so pleased with how well they are both doing. Murphy has a slight limp in his hind leg but still manages to get around. Barney barrels through the other dogs like a plow through a snow drift. Barney’s appetite is amazing and Murphy licks the platter clean every time.

Guess I couldn’t ask for much more than this from the oldest of the double-digit gang.

Things aren’t looking up here


Things are not looking up around here tonight. Suitcases are out, I’m frantic and da doggies know something is up.


Tomorrow I leave for a week-long photography workshop in Montana. I’m pretty excited. The dogs and Karen, not so much.

I actually grew up in Montana and went to school at the University of  Montana, but I haven’t been back for over 30 years.


I’ve had a little sit-down with everyone. I’ve told them that they need to be on their best behavior for Karen. No fighting, be patient at meal times. Don’t wake her up at 4:30 am like they did me yesterday.

I’m not sure what my schedule will be, so I might not be back until September 1. I’m hoping to take even better photos of the hounds of Greyhound Gardens when I return.

Think positive thoughts for Karen. She’ll be fine, but she might need a break when I get back.

Thank you Karen… this is an awesome opportunity for me, without your support, I couldn’t do it.

Herding cats


Murphy turned 14 on June 1st. I think he is the first dog that as a senior really showed a touch of senility. I swear this guy is just like herding cats now. He wanders here, he wanders there and then he wanders back. It’s kind of sad in a humorous way. He doesn’t know he’s just wandering.

He just recently started galloping across the backyard, something he hasn’t done for years. Some things you never forget and I guess acting your age is one of the things you do forget.

Gotta love a greyhound.

Resting sunset


Murphy is the senior hound in the household now. It’s hard to believe that he was one of Karen’s first greyhounds ten years ago.

Ten years, good grief where does the time go. I sure don’t feel ten years older. However, according to my hair dresser, my hair might be the same color as Murphy’s face. I’ve chosen ignorance is bliss and I don’t wanna know.

Murphy does a great job of getting around and his hind legs don’t seem to be any worse for the wear, but he wins the prize for being the first dog ever to want to lay down for a sunset.


The last of the rotten mommy awards


…comes from Murphy. Now technically I didn’t forget his birthday. Since he and Karen share the same birthday, it should be a no-brainer.

Except, technically, I nearly forgot Karen’s birthday too. Yes, I may have pulled it off by the skin of my teeth, but barely. So instead of doing a post for Murphy’s big 14 (a birthday that I remembered on the same day), I had to pull off a fast one for Karen hoping for some sort of redemption.

So Murphy, here’s to a very happy belated 14th birthday!

48 hours


Welcome to Oregon. 48 hours ago the ground was covered with a dusting of snow and ice. Today, the grass is ankle deep and the sun was shining. Murphy is our hound that is happy to spend hours laying in the sun and grazing in the grass. He’ll be 14 in June, I hope he has many days of grazing ahead of him .