Sunday, January 31, 2016

Love is...ever blooming, ever changing.


We thought it would be fun to bring back our "Love is" theme.  So if anyone would care to join us, Sundays are now going to be "Love Is" on our blog.

Friday, January 29, 2016

Flashback Friday - Holly's turn

Since Westminster is only a couple weeks away....

Flash Back to when my daughter and Holly competed at Westminster!

Thursday, January 28, 2016

For the love of a collie...

They say that art mirrors life, and I have found this to be true in many cases.  In Albert Payson Terhune’s books you will find heroic tales of canine loyalty.  While the acts of those gallant Sunnybank collies may seem exaggerated, those stories originated from tales of the real hero dogs of Terhune’s day.  He would take the stories from newspapers and magazines of real dogs saving people, and of accomplishing other amazing feats, and incorporate them into his stories.  He also included his collies’ own acts of bravery in his stories.  

Terhune with Bruce, Wolf, Lass and Lad

Collies are amazing creatures, as are all dogs.  They love us even when we are less than perfect, they are always happy to see us, and they forgive us when we fail them.  I am a dog lover, but collies in particular hold a special place in my heart.  My family has a history with this breed that now goes back generations.  My uncle first fell in love with the collie breed, and he gave my grandparents their first collie, Jade.  Because of Jade, my sister also fell in love with the breed as did I.  My mother has had three collies in her lifetime, and now my daughter is devoted to this breed as well.  She has grown up showing collies at dog shows and competing with collies in junior handling.  She is now an adult, has recently become a veterinary assistant, and is handling collies for other collie breeders as a professional dog handler.  So dogs play a very important role in all of our lives, which I guess is obvious to anyone reading my blog.
Grandpa with Jade

Collies in particular have captured the hearts of many of my family members because they are special.  They are beautiful and graceful animals, but that is only part of their appeal.  They are sweet and caring, and they are extremely loyal.  Collies also have the ability to make us laugh, and if you look into their eyes you can see a sense of humor and how they delight in making us happy.  Collies were bred to work with humans, to assist us.  They were bred for a purpose, and because of this, they are intelligent dogs who love to please their families.  

My uncle actually wrote a true story about one of his collies, that was published by one of the collie magazines back in the 1960’s.  He was camping on the Cape with his children and his 2 year old daughter wandered off and became lost.  The family collie, Dove, found my cousin and alerted my uncle to her location.  Dove was a beautiful, rough coated collie, and she was devoted to her family.
Pretty Dove

My sister’s first collie, Reggie also showed remarkable intelligence.  Reggie was a smooth, tri color collie.  As a puppy my sister brought Reggie over to our Grandmother’s house to visit.  The distance between their two houses was about 3 miles, and my sister drove Reggie to our Grandmother’s home for the visit.    A few months later Reggie, then about eight months old, escaped my sister’s fenced back yard.  We know he wandered down to the beach, as her neighbors reported seeing him heading down there.  A short while later my Grandmother heard her dog barking in the back yard.  When she went out to see what was happening, she spotted Reggie on the other side of her back gate, standing proudly and wagging his tail in greeting.  Even though he had only visited once, and arrived there by car, he had somehow found his way to our Grandmother’s house and was waiting to be invited inside.  My grandmother called my sister, who drove over to pick up her happy, albeit sandy and wet, collie boy.  We still do not know how he managed to find his way there.
Handsome Reggie

Collies really are incredible dogs, with a great capacity to love, a sense of humor, uncanny intelligence and an inherent loyalty that guides all their actions.  And these are just a few of the reasons I love this breed so deeply, and why they have captured the hearts of so many families over the years.  I am always surprised when people tell me they never see collies any more, they are such perfect companions.  If you have a favorite dog breed, what drew you to your chosen breed?

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Wordless Wednesday - collie love

Do you give your dogs a Valentine treat or toy?
Ryder wants to know, will you be his Valentine?

Scarlett just wants to know where the cookies are!

Saturday, January 23, 2016


The snow is still falling, the wind has picked up and the temps are dropping.  Now we are all inside, staying warm and snuggling with the collies.  But earlier today the collies had fun outside playing in the snow.  So we thought we share some videos from earlier today.


Collies, like most dogs and children, LOVE snow.  They just can't get enough snow.

Watching them frolic and play in the snow reminds of when I was a child, I would stay outside playing until my mom made me come inside.

This little girl is 6 month old Kelsea.  She is visiting, and this was her first experience with snow.  She was so happy and had so much fun!

Baby it's cold time to do a review!

Today a storm is hitting our town, and as the snow is falling outside, the collies are bored.  They want to be outside playing in the snow, but we are making them take a break, to warm up.  Which means it is the perfect time to do a review!  We were asked by to review a treat dispensing toy made by Outward Hound.

Kori is wondering what is in the box!
Scarlett is patiently waiting for the pictures to be over!
Can we be done now Mom?  This looks like fun!
Let's see if they can figure it out...

Kelsea gave it a try...
And Scarlett is the first to figure it out!
As you can see the collies enjoyed this Outward Hound Kibble Drop Toy, and they were all willing to play with it together.   It is made with durable food-safe plastic, and it's BPA, PVC, & phthalate free.  Because it is an interactive toy it helps entertain your dogs when they are stuck inside the house by providing mental stimulation through play.  They are on sale at, and you can find them here: Toys!

We were given this product free of charge from for our honest opinion, and we were not compensated in any way. (other than all the fun we had)  Thanks Chewy and thanks Sydney for sending us these treats!

And we are happy to announce we have just hit 75,000 page views!  Thanks everyone!  Now on to hit that 100,000 mark!

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Tuesday Tails - Sparky needs a special home

It's been a long time since we joined Tuesday Tails, the blog hop designed to help homeless pets find homes.  We have been thinking about featuring this dog's story for a while.  It is a story that is heartbreaking, and one that happens all too often.

Sparky was brought to New England from down south by a rescue group.  He was adopted by an older woman, who loved Sparky very much.  She knitted him his own sweaters, and he was her devoted companion, residents of their town would see them taking drives every day.  Unfortunately, last April Sparky's mom passed away in her sleep, and Sparky's life changed dramatically.  His mom's family didn't want Sparky, and they dumped him in an animal shelter.

Sparky was very scared and stressed while he was at the shelter, he lost his mom and his home.  Like many dogs, the shelter environment was not good for Sparky.  It took a long time, but eventually, Sparky was adopted.  But sadly, Sparky was returned soon after.  You see, Sparky is a dog with issues.  He becomes very attached to his person, and becomes very protective of him or her.  While he was living alone with an elderly woman, it wasn't an issue, as his mom was his whole world.  But when he became protective and snapped at people to protect his new owner, he was returned.  He was adopted twice more, with the same results.  He needs a single, older owner, who lives alone and wants a loyal companion.  There just aren't many of those available for a little dog alone in the world.

Now Sparky is at a new shelter, and his future is very uncertain.  He doesn't understand why he keeps getting returned and each time it happens he becomes depressed.  He is not a bad dog, he is a dog that needs someone to work with his issues and who understand his complicated background.  Sparky's mom was elderly, and I know she expected her family to take in her little dog when she passed, but it didn't happen.  This is why it's so important to include your dogs or other pets in your will, you need to make sure they have a place to go and someone to love them when you can't.
You can check out Sparky's Facebook page by clicking here:
Sparky Hines


Friday, January 15, 2016

I'm no poet...

But in honor of our friend Sugar who is having surgery today...

A dog named Sugar, is a sight to behold,
She brings smiles to our faces, with her heart of pure gold.
The first to befriend you, the first to say hello,
She spreads sunshine and happiness, a pleasure to know.
A joy to her family, a joy to all of us too,
Get well soon sugar, we all love you!

(I did tell you I wasn't a poet, it's the thought that counts, right?)

Good luck with your surgery, you are in our thoughts and prayers!

And here is a happy collie smile, for Sugar!

Thursday, January 14, 2016

A collie history - part 2

If we look back at the most influential collies in developing the American collie, there is one collie who made an outstanding contribution to the breed - Ch Parbold Piccolo.

Ch Parbold Piccolo

Piccolo was imported in 1904 by J.L. Behling, to add to his kennel, Bon Ami Collies.  Sadly, Piccolo was never used as a stud dog in our country, as he ran away and was lost shortly after arriving.  But he did sire two sons while he was living in England, Ch Anfield Model and Parbold Pierrot, and both of these collies would greatly contribute to developing the American collie.

Ch Anfield Model

Ch Squire of Tytton (Ch Balgregie Baronet x Helle of Boston) was out of a Piccolo daughter.  He was imported to our country by Greystone Collies.  Tytton was a big winner, and was known for his exceptional temperament.  And he went on to influence the American collie through his sons, Grimsby Squire and Seedley Squire.

Ch Ormskirk Foxall was descended from Parbold Pierrot, a Ch Parbold Piccolo son.  The Foxall line of collies were known to be aggressive, but they were also known for producing collies of greater size and refined heads.  Two of his famous descendants were Ch Seedley Stirling and Ch Magnet.

Ch Southport Sample (Grimsby Squire x Hilda of Moreton) was a grandson of Ch Squire of Tytton, and Tytton was out of a Ch Parbold Piccolo daughter.  He was brought to this country by W.E. Mason, of Southport Collies.  Mr Mason had both an American kennel and a kennel in England.  Sample was known for "excelling in overall type and for having a profuse coat."  He was also known for his wonderful temperament, at a time when so many show collies had questionable temperaments.  He produced a son, Ch Southport Sceptre and a grandaughter Laund Lily who also contributed greatly to the development of the American collie.  Laund Lily was the dam of Laund Limit.

Ch Southport Sample

Ch Parbold Picador (Master Willie x Moss Hill Vera) was a linebred collie, from Model.  Master Willie was sired by Model, and Ch Anfield Model was a Ch Parbold Piccolo son.  Ch Parbold Picador was imported by Tazewell Collies.  Picador was a known for producing quality stock, and he produced Ch Laund Limit. (Ch Parbold Picador x Laund Lily)  Picador also produced a daughter, Southport Seal, who was the dam of Ch Magnet.

Ch Parbold Picador

Also in the early 1900's another important collie was imported, Ch Seedley Stirling.  (Parkside Pro Patria x Ch Seedley Sylvia)  Stirling was imported by Knocklayde Collies.  Stirling was considered a prime example of correct Collie type.  He was known for his "wonderful head, eye and expression."  He left no surviving Sire line, but his bitch line flourished and through them many of us can trace our collies back to Stirling.

Ch Seedley Stirling

***Most of the information and dates listed here were obtained through searches online, which can be a great resource.  When gathering this information, it appears that most of the sites used Gayle Kaye's book, "A collie In America" as one of their main sources, without crediting her for all her hard work.  Ms. Kaye is an invaluable source of information on the history of the collie and her book is priceless to collie lovers

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

All natural flea repellant

Here in North America our Winter is in full swing.  So this post isn't exactly timely, but we have a question for all of you.  When Spring arrives, what do you use for flea and tick prevention?  We are looking to go the all natural route, as we want to avoid pesticides.  There are so many different suggestions online, we wondered what have you found to be the safest and most effective?

I know many people use the leading topical flea treatments, and they are happy with the results.  And I'm not criticizing those that do choose to use these products.  But after going through the heartbreak of losing a dog to cancer, when he was only 7 years old, we have become very particular about which foods, treats, vaccines and medicines we give our dogs.  Losing a dog is devastating enough, without losing them before their time.  With collies having issues with so many drugs, we already have to be super vigilant anyway.  (See Here and Here). #overprotectivedogmom


And two bloggers already kindly responded to my inquires, but I lost the links to your responses.  Sorry, I didn't want you think I was ignoring your suggestions.

Edit to add:
Our friends at Keep the Tail Wagging just posted about what works for her.  You can find it here -

Monday, January 11, 2016

The American Collie, you've come a long way baby! - A history of our collies, part 1

I've always felt that to understand the present, you must consider the past.  And when I look at my collies, when I study their pedigrees, I can't help but be fascinated by how far back I can trace my dogs' ancestry.  But before I get into my own collies' pedigrees, I want to discuss the history of the American collie, as I love learning about all those collies from long ago.
CH Anfield Model

The first English collie was imported to the United States in 1879 by Allen Apgar.  When his imported collies began winning at dog shows, other breeders followed his example and began importing collies as well.  So the foundation stock of the American collie were collies imported to our country from England.  A famous collie breeder, W.E. Mason established his kennel, Southport Collies, in New Jersey.  While he began breeding his own family of collies, he started importing English collies to his kennel.  He was responsible for importing more high quality collies to this country than any other breeder/exhibitor.  He imported four famous collies to our country, Ch Anfield Model, Ch Squire of Tytton, Ch Parbold Picador and Ch Southport Sample, and these collies changed the breed.

Because lines of American collies were still being developed, the collies that were imported from Britain were of higher quality than what was being bred here in the United States.  So when these imports stepped into the show ring, they won.  The high demand for these collies led many English kennels to sell their top winning collies to American kennels.  With the importation of these, high quality collies, the American collie "made rapid progress between 1900 to 1920."  The American collie was originally a farm type specimen, and all the British imports helped to develop our collie into the beautiful dog we now see in most American kennels.

What I find interesting is that when I look at pictures and videos of the collies being shown in England and other European countries today, and compare them to the modern American collie, I prefer our collies.  The European collie has changed quite a bit in appearance and temperament over the years.  They are shorter, heavier, and have a wider skull and a more pronounced stop.  They don't resemble the top winning collies of the past, many of which were imported to the United States.  And if you compare the American collie with those British imports from the turn of the century, they still look very similar.  I think that the American collie now surpasses European collies in beauty, grace and elegance.  But that is just my own opinion, and I'm sure many European breeders prefer their collies to ours.  However, I have seen breeders from England, Japan, and many other countries attend the Collie Club of America National dog show.  They come to evaluate our collies, and they offer exorbitant sums of money to purchase our collies to add to their own breeding stock.  The American collie has come a long way from it's original working stock, but they can still herd sheep and other farm animals just as their ancestors were of long ago.

Kori loves herding!

Saturday, January 9, 2016

Fromm's Four-star Nutritionals low fat Liver treats, our first review of 2016

We were asked to do a new review for of one of the many products they sell, Fromm's Liver treats.  And Holly and Kori asked if they could help with this review, since Ryder gets to be featured in so many of our reviews they wanted a turn.  (What can we say, the boy knows how to pose!)   Now Fromm is a company we know and trust, so we were happy to do this review.  Fromm is a family owned company and all of their ingredients are made here in the USA.  With so many dogs getting sick from treats made in China, or from treats made in the USA but with ingredients made in China, this is something that is very important to us.

"Hey Kori, what did Mom say?"

"She said dogs are getting sick from some treats!"

With these sweet faces depending on me to take care of them and provide healthy food and treats, the quality and taste are equally important.  Because let's face it, if the treats don't taste good, the collies won't eat them.

"Can Ryder top this pose?!?"

With Fromm dog food and treats, you know they care about your dogs' health.  These treats have limited ingredients, so you know exactly what you are feeding your pets.  (While these treats do contain wheat, Fromm also has a line of grain-free treats.)

Fromm Four Star Nutritionals Liver Treats - Ingredients

Wheat flour, fresh turkey liver, salt, garlic powder

"Have we posed long enough, can we have some now?"

And these treats are small, and low in calories, so they are perfect little rewards while training your dog!

Key Benefits
  • One calorie per treat
  • 100% USDA-inspected ingredients
  • Made in Wisconsin in a USDA-plant

So the final test was the taste.  And after sampling the treats not once, not twice, but three times....the collies all agree, they are yummy.  While I am happy about the small size, to keep the collies at a healthy weight, they would have appreciated a slightly larger treat as some of the collies swallowed the treats whole, without even chewing them!  Would we recommend these to others or buy them again?  The answer is yes, they are a high quality treat, perfect for use as a training reward, but just be careful if your dogs are voracious eaters.

We were given this product free from for our honest opinion, and we were not compensated in any way.  Thanks Chewy and thanks Sydney for sending us these treats!

2016 Pet Blogger Challenge


We are joining the 6th annual Pet Blogger Challenge, hosted by Go Pet Friendly It's the perfect way to get to know other Bloggers and get useful feedback about your own blog.  For those of you who do not blog, this post may not be very interesting, so we included lots of pictures!  BOL

Thanks for visiting!  All of the dogs featured in this post have passed away, and since I wrote this on "Throwback Thursday" they were all on my mind.  They were each very special to us, so we wanted to share them with you.

Join the Pet Blogger Challenge Jan 9th, 10th and 11th