Senior Dogs

I find myself thinking more and more about my senior dog and her brother; Riva and Reveler will be 13 this July.

It is hard to wrap my head around that! How could it be almost 13 years since we saw these little burr heads come into the world??

Riva came home with me when she was 8 weeks old and I knew immediately she was going to be very special. At 8 weeks old she looked at me and gave me a huge Chessie grin as if to say, “you better hang onto your hat because I’m going to be a handful”!

Riva puppy2  Riva puppy (2)  Riva & Jimmie puppy1

My niece, Hailee, grew up with Riva. She is her dog for sure. Hailee doesn’t like to talk about Riva getting old, she’s a very emotional girl when it comes to the dogs. She was the first dog she showed, albeit only once, but they had a good time and did very well with each other. Hailee has always been my dog helper.

Hailee & Girls

Hailee & Riva  the retrieve    Hailee and Riva    Hailee and Riva first show

In my 25+ years having this breed and eight dogs I have only had two that were true counter surfers, but Riva holds the title of “Counter Surfer Elite”. This girl can manage to get to things you thought you had well-hidden and pushed back out of reach. Over the years she has eaten half pans of brownies, ate half my special apple pie that was for my Smiling Rivafamily reunion, cinnamon rolls, and breads just to name a few. One of the most memorable counter surf incidents was when I was visiting my friends for the weekend and Riva stole the butter.  My friend Michelle’s father was preparing dinner for all of us and the dogs were roaming around. He placed a stick of butter on the counter, turned around to stir something on the stove, turned back around and the butter was gone (wrapper and all), he had his hands on his hips and a look like “I could swear I just put a stick of butter there”. This was years ago and we all still laugh about it to this day. She never has any true guilt or shame about what she does, oh yea she gives you a sheepish grin with the ears back because she knows she looks cute and you will just laugh and say, “well I should have done a better job putting things away”. Even at almost 13 she still steals things off the counter.

Riva also has selective hearing. Now according to my nephew when he was about eight years old this is a real disease, lol. There was one time we were camping at the same friend’s house for a big Chessie event; another friend, Jan, was in her camper right next to our tent. Well somehow Riva got out of the tent in the late evening, so it was starting to get dark. Here I am out there with food trying to get her to come just close enough I can grab her collar. Not even once did she acknowledge me and look back, she just kept sniffing around making sure to keep just enough distance between us. You would think this food motivated dog would be easy to catch with food. Finally, after about 15 minutes I managed to wrangle her. The only comment Jan had to say, “only a mother could love Riva”. So,  from that day forward that comment has stuck.

She also thinks if the door opens she must exit! I can’t tell you how many times this girl has taken herself for a walkabout around the neighborhood with me and sometimes others following. One particular incident that stands out in my mind was just a couple years ago. I came out of my bedroom to the living room and I just knew immediately she was not in the house. So, I grab my shoes, a leash and treats and rush out the door only to see my brother rounding the corner with no shirt or shoes, Riva in his arms, yes, he was carrying this 75-pound dog back home.

Riva had one litter of pups, which is where Maia and Titan came from. She wasn’t a bad mother, but she wasn’t what I would call maternal. She would feed them just fine but Chesapeake Bay Retriever Puppies (1)when it came to cleaning them she looked at me like “I am not licking their butts”, so that job was left for me for the most part. When they were old enough to be weaned I could tell she was glad to be relieved of that duty. She never even noticed when they started leaving for their new homes. I think she might have been a little disgusted when two of them stayed behind.

I tell you about all this, so you can have a sense of who she is; a dog with her own agenda! Some of you might say, “well you should have trained her better”, believe me I did my best with her. But honestly after several years I just resigned myself to this is who she is. You all might think this is strange, but I find these qualities endearing because at the end of the day I knew she loved me when she would snuggle up close to me and want me to put my arm around her while she slept. It’s Riva’s world, I just live in it!

When I look at her now graying face and watch her moving a little slower and stiffer, I remember all the antics she has done and how I would be so frustrated with her at times and think, what I wouldn’t give to have that young dog back and do it all again. It’s these memories that really fill my heart with joy even though I know her days, months and maybe even another year or two or waning. Dogs live in the moment and I would like to be like that with her, not thinking about the future but just enjoying the here and now with her. Living each day in the moment with my special Riva Diva!

Riva Fall Photo Shoot 2016 (3)

Riva Fall Photo Shoot 2016 8-3

Tina & the Brown Dogs

Little Treasures

So I thought I would introduce you to the two newest members of the pack. These Little Treasures came about from breeding Maia last May to a very nice boy!

Maia had nine live little beauties, sadly we had one stillborn very small girl, but the nine were very healthy. Five girls and four boys. Misty-Shores-Maia-20_thumb.jpgMisty-Shores-Maia-17_thumb.jpgMisty-Shores-Maia-18_thumb.jpg

My niece, Hailee,  stayed the whole summer with me to help with the whelping and rearing of the pups. Maia’s pregnancy was very normal with no real problems. On July 12 Maia went into hard labor about 1:30pm and had the first pups, a little girl at 2:00pm. She continued to have pups between 20 minutes – 1 hour through the first five, then she took a break until 8:50pm delivering four more pups by 12:30am. We watched her for a few more hours just to make sure, by 3:30am we figured she was done since my vet had seen 9 on the x-ray and she wasn’t in active labor any more. We were all exhausted, Maia had settled in with her new family, all were doing great. So my niece and I decided we would get some sleep…Maia had other plans! At 4:06am number 10 was born, a big beautiful girl. Hailee’s girl!

The next several months were very busy caring for Maia and her babies. The whole time I could see that Hailee had a very special bond with the last little girl, who was called Orange (collar color) and she with Hailee. So she was going to be our keeper.

The plan was we were keeping a girl, and my friend was keeping a girl. However, what you plan at the beginning is not always how it ends.

As the pups grew and developed their own little personalities I saw something in one of the other little girls that grabbed my heart, Green girl. My friend, Robin, came pretty regularly to watch the pups and try to narrow down which girl she wanted. But as the weeks went on she started thinking she liked some of the boys as well. She has an older dog, Reveler, Riva’s brother., and wanted a pup that would fit in with a very senior dog.  So in the end she went with the pup that worked best with Reveler, little Dark Blue boy.

Please meet our Little Treasures

Misty Shores Dancin In The Moonlight


Misty Shores Dancin In The MoonlightMistyShores-Zelena_thumb.jpg

Misty Shores Lil Blossom


Misty Shores Lil Blossom..MistyShores-Thalia_thumb.jpg

We are looking forward to having a lot of fun and adventures with these two!

Tina & the Brown Dogs

New Beginnings

I have decided I will be more diligent in my blogging. I find writing a great pleasure and resource to get out my thoughts, my frustrations and just plain venting.

Now for my thoughts, those are the posts that make it to the public.

My frustrations and venting, well those never make it to the public but I find it a great way to get things off my mind without becoming the person I strive not to be.

So with that being said, 2017 was a VERY busy year for us!!

Just  a preview of some of the events, and then I will endeavor to do a post on each event at a later date, hopefully not six months from now, lol.

Little Treasures

Dock Diving

Trick Dog

Active Dog Club Member

A little sneak peak at a future post…

MistyShores ZelenaMistyShores Thalia

 Tina & the Brown Dogs

Decal Mania Studio #decalmaniastudio

We entered another give away on Facebook. This one was for car decals from Decal Mania Studio. All we were required to do was share group/page with others. It was a breed specific give away for Chesapeake decals, so you know I shared the heck out of it.

Lori offers decals in many different categories:

Dog Decals, Sports Decals, Monograms, Rhinestone Car Decals, Cat Decals, Hobby Decals, EAT SLEEP …., Word Hearts, Hope/Cancer Decals, LOVE Decals, Holiday Decals, Pop Culture, Business Car Decals, Faith / Angels, Stick Family Decals, Military, On Board Decal, Province and States, Life Decals, Professions, INFINITY Decals, Heart Beat Decals, Country, Camping / Outdoors

So I won 3 decals and bought an additional one. I was very impressed with the quality and design when I received them. They were exactly as featured on her website.

Decal Mania Studio (4)I love them all but this is my favorite! Perfect for my Heart Dogs!!Decal Mania Studio (5)This one I gave to my brother for his truck.Decal Mania Studio (3)Decal Mania Studio (2)

The directions were straight forward and the application was a breeze! I have only put one on my car so far, my favorite of course.

Decal Mania Studio (7)Decal Mania Studio (9)They are a nice size and I think it looks great on my window!

Check out her website here and Facebook here.

I don’t find many Chesapeake items so I will definitely order in the future. These not only are great for myself but for gifts and trophy items for dog shows.

Thank you Lori, I love them!!

Tina and the Brown Dogs

We Won! #pineappleleads

On February 9th I won a beautiful show lead from a company called Pineapple Leads. Pineapple Leads (2)

It arrived in this cute little bag.Pineapple Leads (1)

I found this company on Facebook through a flash give away they were doing. I have been entering for over a year and was so excited when my name was announced!

The rules are always easy, for this flash give away they just asked…

1) Write the number of years you have been showing;
2) LIKE the Pineapple Leads Page;
3) LIKE this post;
4) Please, feel free to get the word out if someone you know might be interested in our show leads / competitions!

Number one changes, they may ask your breed/s, your heart breed Red heart, your country, and so on.

The leads are beautiful, the photo does not do it justice. From their website…

Shipping WORLDWIDE! Strong satin dog show leads for all breed sizes, handcrafted in Finland. A true labour of love from a multi-breed show home.

I have not had the opportunity to try it out yet but it feels nice in my hand and it does seem very strong. I know this color is going to look great against the brown Chesapeake fur.

If you are a dog show person check them out on Facebook here their website here or Twitter here

Thank you Pineapple Leads we love our new show lead!!!

Tina and the Brown Dogs