Musher Sebastian Schnuelle [first in the 2009 Yukon Quest, 2nd in the 2009 Iditarod] rocks the earflaps-up look at the Iditarod restart in Wasilla. ADN photo by Bill Roth.
The official Iditarod site is awful, and not just because of a certain inescapable quitter. So ditch the official site, race addicts, and click on this link for awesome Iditarod coverage courtesy of the Anchorage Daily News. Feature stories, a blog, tweets, interactive maps: ADN wins it in a walk. I'm cheering for DeeDee Jonrowe [and her mom] and Colleen Robertia:
Several dogs in Robertia's Rogues Gallery Kennel — mostly "runts, rejects, retirees or rescues," she said — were rescued from the Kenai Animal Shelter and Alaska's Extended Life Animal Sanctuary in Nikiski. Others weren't wanted or needed by area mushers.Penny, Colleen's lead dog, weighs a whopping 29 pounds — all of it heart. [That's Penny, top left, from the ADN.] Go, Colleen and Penny!
"I think they ended up taking two or three dogs from us," Tim Colbath, founder of the sanctuary, said of the Robertias.
"I hope she can finish it. To be able to take the time and knowledge to go through the rescues and get them to work together like that is just phenomenal." [Source: ADN.]
A few fave photos from the ADN:
The dangerous Mr. Mackey
OMG, this is begging for a caption
Karen Ramstead's gorgeous Siberians
Have an elderly Rottweiler? Dr. David J. Waters [pdf] really wants to meet you. Actually, he wants to meet your Rottie. Dr. Waters is traveling from coast to coast in order to see as many geriatric Rottweilers as he can:
The complete itinerary of the tour includes: March 11, Harrisburg, Pa.; March 12, Holliston, Mass.; March 13, Philadelphia; March 15, Keysville, Va.; March 16, Columbia, Tenn.; March 19, Cambridge, Wis.; March 20, Riverside, Iowa; March 21, Alma, Kan.; March 23, Red Oak, Texas; March 24, Castle Rock, Colo.; March 27, Colorado Springs, Colo.; March 28, Tijeras, N.M.; March 29, Waddell, Ariz.; March 30, San Diego; April 1, Pacific Palisades, Calif.; and April 3, Seattle.Read more here, from Jennifer Viegas at Discover News: Oldest Rottweilers Inspire 'The Old Grey Muzzle Tour'.
Waters leads a research team that studies aging and cancer in pet dogs. The research includes the study of exceptionally long-lived Rottweilers - individuals that have lived to at least 13 years, which is equivalent to a human living to 100.
"These exceptional dogs have lived at least 30 percent longer than average for their breed," Waters said. "They have dodged cancer and other life-threatening diseases of aging. We believe studying them can shed light on what it takes to live well."
Over the years, Waters and his team have tracked the lives of more than 140 long-lived Rottweilers. Today, however, their database is down to just 15, hence the tour to meet these exceptionally aged canines.
"From questionnaires completed by owners and veterinarians, my team has validated dates of birth and collected a mountain of information about these dogs, including medical history, diet and dietary supplement usage, and parents' longevity," said Waters, who is also associate director of Purdue's Center on Aging and the Life Course and professor in the Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences.
At each stop, he will perform a physical examination, collect DNA samples, and record measurements such as height and chest and belly circumference. He will observe each dog in its home environment and query owners on what makes their dog exceptional.
Keep. your dog. on a damn. leash. [H/T: DeltaBluez Stockdogs.] Heather points out that a little training wouldn't hurt, either. Speaking as one who has owned sheep: most people who say their unleashed dog has a reliable recall are either delusional or lying.
Canadian dude needs some viral help for a worthy cause. You got it, dude.
I love Local Commercials salutes Butt Drugs of Corydon, Indiana.
OK Go - This Too Shall Pass - Rube Goldberg Machine version. Yes, 20 billion people have seen it already, but maybe you missed it. I'm here to help.
A journey through Asia. Moving and beautiful.
What an 8.8 [and the ensuing tsunami] can do, from The Big Picture.
- Conception, Chile, shifted 10 feet to the west.
- Santiago, Chile’s capital, was displaced about 11 inches to the west-southwest.
- Buenos Aires, the capital of Argentina, moved about 1 inch to the west.
Seriously folks, those of us along the southern [strike-slip fault] San Andreas will never experience the kind of subduction zone thrust-faulting they have in Chile [and in Alaska and the Pacific Northwest]. San Andreas — big-ass quakes. Subduction zones — frikkin' humongous quakes.
Last, but not least — if you plan to be in the San Diego area in late March, you might want to attend Safer Pet Vaccination and Health Care: An Educational Seminar and Benefit. You'll spend the day with pet vaccination experts Drs. W. Jean Dodds and Ronald D. Schultz, and proceeds will go to the Rabies Challenge Fund. The seminar/benefit will be held at the Del Mar Hilton [across from the Del Mar Fairgrounds and Racetrack] on Sunday, March 28, 2010.