I just re-found this group of images - like so many photos, they were sitting on my hard drive, edited, but not shared.
Does that mean they existed?
They were taken in May 2019, and I believe Heather holding her hands up in the first photo is illustrating that she dropped Chester's leash and let him walk without tether... although his leash was still attached to his collar... just in case.
I realized there are more photos of Saru the Shiba, Chester's brother, than the other dogs. Going beyond his photogenic-ness, maybe I was trying to show him some extra attention as we were all so smitten with Chester and his ability to figure out jumping logs (it took him a few moments to figure out what to do!) and the fact he didn't run away.
There's even more of Saru than my own dogs, Mister Coco + Bella Boo.
It was a peaceful walk with four very different dogs all at various stages of their lives, just getting to be dogs.
my dad turned 90 years old today... although he's not really old.
he still gardens, mows the lawn, mixes cement and build houses for his mason bees
he's also very social so the last few months have been hard, but today my mom organized a drive by/pop in for him on their front lawn so he got to see some friends and family in person
i asked him for the photo wearing the hat, he asked me to take one of him 'sleeping'...
the sleeping has nothing to do with age, he's been doing it for as long as i can remember
Happy birthday dad!
Ollie and his new l'il brother Luke came by for a photo session.
These two weren't really into "sitting" for portraits, and even less so, sitting for portraits next to each other as there was too much fun (and napping) to be had, but I'm all about embracing what dogs want to share when in front of my camera, and then finding a way to capture what I see so I can share it with their humans.
I know my studio can get warm, but this day was weirdly hot and muggy so I was wiping the sweat off my brow as my glasses were fogging up... photography can be so glamourous.
The dogs were cool though and they took turns in front of the camera and got lots of breaks and had a big bowl of water so they also helped wash my studio floor... all in all, a win win!
It was a hot day today, but we ventured out and met this wee one... but more on her in a bit!
The first stop was to visit my father-in-law. We haven't seen him in person for at least a couple months - since before the pandemic hit - and because he lives in a senior-oriented building, we haven't visited inside, but the weather's been nice so we planned a visit for outside.
We met up in the park across from his apartment and baked in the sun for a bit while we chatted. It was short, but sweet. As we walked back to the car through the garden, we stopped for a photo op. The rhodos and irises were beautiful and the light was being filtered through them just perfectly, even in the hot afternoon sun.
Next stop was a short drive away to meet 11-week old Soji. We'd left our dogs at home as they're older and not very stoked on puppy energy. Soji was trying her hardest to play - she would have bursts of energy running and chewing on whatever was close, then pancake down in exhaustion. Hot day (even in the shade), new people, so much excitement.
She has these long beautiful eyelashes set into her dark mask - with dappled sun and no reflector or flash it's a bit tough to see her eyes, but really, they're only a one piece of her overall cuteness.
She was a bit nervous when I brought out my DSLR, but she is such a sponge that it took no time for her to feel more at ease with it in her face... with the help of some treats. But she also seems to take her treats quite seriously, and you'll see her steely gaze of focus in the photos where I was holding the camera in one hand and the treat in the other.
It's a big, new world for this little one, and I wish her all goodness and love.
I was able to tear myself away from wee Soji to also enjoy this friend's beautiful yard and koi pond where the fish swim into your hand... and sometimes even do a soft nibble.
My first written magazine article and cover photo in one!
I came across Wunderdog on Instagram when they put out a call for submissions to the first issue of their new magazine. So I did some research to see if I thought it'd be a good fit for my story following former sled dogs since the 2010 Whistler sled dog cull, and I really liked their messaging, so I submitted.
Nina, the editor, and I had some back and forths to flesh out how the story would fit and in that time the first issue was launched. I thought maybe they'd moved on, but Nina reached out again and we got to work... the best part about the delay was then getting the cover!
I'm not gonna lie - condensing the last nine years of this project into 400 words was tough. I'm not a writer so I agonized for days and weeks trying to include a mix of everything I've learned and photographed over this time. I submitted a whole bunch of photographs and let them choose - I just couldn't. And the cover... it was tough to decide about using an existing photo or getting something new, but we went with new (and it was an excuse for me to visit and photograph Chich again!) I had no idea which image they'd choose, but am in love with the one they did. This wee dog with the big eyes and perky ears not only draws you in, but when you learn she was a sled dog, it's an opportunity for learning about sleddies.
Thanks to Wunderdog Magazine for helping share the plight of sled dogs as well as sharing the stories of the sleddies on an international scale!
This magazine is just beautiful to hold and it holds so many interesting stories from all over the world featuring pet art therapy to what rescues are doing globally during the pandemic - and the paper it's printed on is thick and matte and showcases the photographs perfectly.
It's a piece of art in and of itself.
Wunderdog isn't available in Canada, but you can order direct from www.wunderdogmagazine.com.
For more on former sled dogs: www.iwasasleddog.com
Started 2020 off with some forest bathing, mud bath style... a walk in the woods with dog friends and human friends...
As part of my on-going advocacy work for sled dogs, the full photo set can be found on my sled dog blog!
My friends Heather + Chris adopted Chester, the greyt earlier this year and recently began fostering another retired racer, Lincoln.
I got to meet him yesterday.
He came bounding into the room - all legs. There was no hesitation, no fear, but lots of awkwardness in his gangly movements!
He's sort of the opposite of Chester, who, although can be silly, is a bit more reserved and sensitive.
Saru, my main buddy and snuggle partner came to hang with us for a bit too.
Then we went outside and Lincoln sort of fetched the ball, Chester chased Lincoln and then they got all amped up and Lincoln started barking at me. Then the two minutes of energy expending was over and they were done.
Lincoln (sporting the red collar) is adoptable through the Northwest Canadian Greyhound League.
Fingers crossed someone I know adopts him so I can come visit him again!