Monday, September 28, 2009

Meet Astro!

No, not the Jetson's dog. :-)

We came up with the name Astro a while ago (okay, it was before he was born). We really liked it but I was a little concerned that it was kind of goofy and of course everyone would think of the Jetson's dog (who is actually pretty cool too). So I went in search of a more dignified sounding name on the Internet. First I checked the Greek and Roman gods because Zephyrus is the Greek god of the west wind that brings spring. Well, I found a really nice god named Astraeus (or Astraeos) and of course Astro fit perfectly with that. Here is what Wikipedia has to say.


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For the airline, see Astraeus (airline). For the genus of earthstars, see Astraeus (genus).

In Greek mythology, Astraeus or Astraeos or Astraeos (Ancient Greek: Ἀστραῖος) was an astrological deity and the Titan-god of the dusk. His original Greek name, Astraios (Ἀστραῖος), translates as "dawn of the stars" (astra- meaning "stars"; the -eos portion meaning "dawn"), the time when the stars come out, or simply dusk. In Hesiod's Theogony and in the Bibliotheca, Astraeus is a second-generation Titan, descended from Crius and Eurybia.[1] However, Hyginus wrote that he was descended directly from Tartarus and Gaia, and referred to him as one of the Gigantes. Appropriately, as god of the dusk, Astraeus married Eos, goddess of the dawn. Together as nightfall and daybreak they produced many children who are associated with what occurs in the sky during twilight. They had many sons, the four Anemoi ("Winds"): Boreas, Notus, Eurus, and Zephyrus,[2] and the five Astra Planeta ("Wandering Stars", i.e. planets): Phainon (Saturn), Phaethon (Jupiter), Pyroeis (Mars), Eosphoros/Hesperos (Venus), and Stilbon (Mercury). A few sources mention one daughter, Astraea[3] ("stars", fem. personification. Sometimes: "justice"), but most writers considered Astraea the child of Zeus and Themis. He is sometimes associated with Aeolus, the Keeper of the Winds, since winds often swell up around dusk.

Greek Name: AstraioV; Transliteration: Astraios; Latin Spelling: Astraeus; Translation: Of the Stars (astraios)

We'll probably include Astraeus or Astraeos in his registered name. Zephyr is Cebar Winter Solstice Zephyrus (born in winter and Zephyr brings spring after winter) so I am thinking maybe ...... Summer Solstice Astraeos .... (born in summer, nights get longer after the solstice, and Astraeos brings night). Okay, I am kind of a nerdy science type.

Everything went extremely well with his flight to Las Vegas on Saturday morning. He flew with Continental's PetSafe program, which is how Zephyr came to us. Both times the plane arrived a little early and they get dogs off the plane and to the pick up office very fast, like within 10 minutes. We were all there to meet him when he arrived. He was wagging and giving kisses right after the delivery.

After leaving the airport we drove to Boulder City and had lunch at a nice park. Zephyr and Astro got along from the start, but it was a little too hot to do much playing.

After all the excitement everyone was tired and slept on the drive home. Yes, that's a pillow Zephyr's head is on. :-) We had camped the night before picking the puppy up.

When we got home the boys explored the back yard together.

Astro really started to relax and play. He loves toys like Zephyr.

Zephyr really, really wanted to play with Astro right away but Astro wasn't so sure at first. When Zephyr got too excited about it all he did a few crazy laps around the yard. Later they were playing and Astro would duck in to the bushes when he got overwhelmed. It was really cute.

Is that my twin? Annie was the first kitty that he met. He has been doing really well with the cats and they with him.

The next morning Zephyr and Astro were up early and ready to play. It was so cute! Once Zephyr laid down to play they really got nutty and started to play tug.

After playing tug Zephyr was smelling Astro and grooming him all over. No, he is not a perv, he's just really happy to have a new brother.

Later that morning Astro met his cousin, Buster, and went on his first short hike in the forest.

So, he is Astro, and he is so sweet and cute and smart ...... ! Thanks to Dani Edgerton and family, Robert Greene, and Andre' Fairfield for doing this breeding and raising such a happy sweet boy. We couldn't be happier!


Wednesday, September 23, 2009

It's A Baby Boy!

I am so excited to announce that this little boy will be joining our family this Saturday!! Someone who will remain nameless is so excited to meet this boy she can hardly sleep. He is expertly shown by Elizabeth in these pictures at eight weeks old.

A happy little boy who is ready to have fun with his new big brother! Zephyr has picked out some nice toys, treats, a blanket, and a bed for him.

He's quite a looker too! I love his brindle markings. Those feet look like they are ready to go for a hike and do some coursing. ;-)

Look at that face and those eyes!! It's like he is saying "Hi Mom, can't wait to see you". It's going to be a rough couple of days, like the past few months. Patience is not always one of my best virtues. I've spent a lot of time in a trance drooling over "puppy picture slideshows" the past two months. :-)


Saturday, September 5, 2009

Crazy PackHounds

The weekend of August 29 was the big overnight backpack trip for the dogs to earn two legs towards their Packdog certificates from the Greater Swiss Mountain Dog Club. We started training last spring to get the dogs used to carrying at least 20% of their weight for at least 5 miles. The trip was great and all the dogs earned their two legs! We hiked along the Arizona Trail between Sandy Canyon and Marshal Lake. Here are some highlights from the trip.

This picture is actually from the morning after we hiked in, but I didn't get a beginning group shot. From left to right it's Zephyr and me, Friday and Dan, Kenda and Tammy, Twix and Cristine, and Linus and Chris.

Starting out on the hike Zephyr carried about 18 pounds, more than 20% of his weight actually. His bed roll fit nicely on top of his pack.

Most of the group at a water break. All the boys had crushes on Kenda the Blond Bombshell Bearded Collie and Twix the Sexy Svelte Visla.

Cruising along the trail. Zephyr carried 6 liters of water, all his food and snacks, his blanket, and our camera in his pack. After we got on the trail we let the dogs off leash and they did a great job. Although, one of the biggest challenges while hiking was keeping the dogs from breaking out in to all out play. They would zoom around even with their packs on.

Once we got to the campsite the dogs decided it was time to let loose. We camped in the trees next to a big grassy meadow that the dogs had an absolute blast running and playing in. The blur on the left is Kenda.

Kenda, Linus, and Friday having fun.


And Lots,

And Lots,

And Lots,

And Lots of Fun was had in the field! We were worried about the dogs making it back out the next day. Twix was a little unsure of what to think of all this craziness at first, but, by the next morning she was out there having fun too.

Finally it was time for bed. Although, Zephyr really did think that it was unfair that there wasn't a special Dogs Only tent.

Zephyr proclaims, "This is the best trip of my whole life!"

A break on the way out the next morning.

Friday coming up the trail. He had to carry the most weight, 26 pounds at start, what a trooper!

We made it! Everyone made it back with no problems and lots of fun was had along the way.

Back at the camp ground all the dogs received two really nice qualifying ribbons and a special yummy biscuit. Chris, Dan, and I met up at Baskin Robbin's for ice cream back in town.

Zephyr crashed out when we got home. He had lots of dreams that afternoon and night, hopefully he was back in the meadow with all his friends.

Riley and Annie had fun in the back yard and tried some agility while Zephyr slept on the porch that afternoon.

Thanks to Chris for organizing our trip, we can't wait for the next one!