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   The Terrier Tattler
August/September  2007

Hello fans and friends -

What can I say…  You know my situation.  Until I can HIRE a dedicated, full-time assistant, I’ve got to make do with my current assistant, Tracy.  She does a nice job, when I can get her time.  But that’s the problem.  She has this ‘job’ which seems to be a higher priority than my newsletter.  I know… it’s hard to imagine.  So again this month I’m apologizing for not having an August edition, but hopefully you will find this Aug/Sept Tattler worth the wait! 

Wesley wanted to write an article for this month’s edition.  I told him I would allow it, but only if he did NOT mention ANYTHING about butt sniffing!  I also wrote a short article about my recovery...  Enjoy your end to Summer – and I promise we will have an OCTOBER edition of the Tattler!




If I Were an 'Only' Dog

By Wesley McDuff

 Since Bianca’s activity level has been limited due to her recovery, she’s had to stay home for some really fun stuff.  This means I get to go with Tracy ALL BY MYSELF – no pesky sister!  I know once B fully recovers she’ll be joining us on many of these excursions, but in the mean time I’m lovin’ it!!! 

 Here’s a diary of some of the fun I’ve been having while Bianca recovers:

Ghost Tour in Naperville – who knew there were ghosts in downtown Naperville!  Well, on weekend nights there is a walking ghost tour and on Saturday nights in August dogs could join in on the tour.  I went with Tracy and wow – there are some pretty creepy things that happened in the past in this little suburb!

Lure Coursing – since I didn’t get to lure course at camp this summer, due to the rain, Tracy took me to Lure Coursing Fanatics one Sunday morning for a couple of runs.  It’s SO MUCH fun, I can hardly contain myself.  I just want to chase that darn lure through the field and catch it! 

Run Mary Run – my ‘sister’ Mary loves to run.  She’s kind of like the Energizer Bunny  – she just keeps goin' and goin'...  I got to go to her first big Cross Country meet of the season.  It was on a beautiful Saturday at a Forest Preserve.  There were a zillion kids there, lots of them wanted to pet me! and it was pretty amazing to watch them run so far.  Mary was awesome (probably due to my cheering!).

I hope to go to the Naperville Doggie Dip on 9/8.  Since Centennial Beach has closed for the season, they allow dogs for one day of swimming.  I know B would love it, but she’s not allowed unsupervised swimming right now.  I’m hoping for sunny weather so Tracy will take ME! 

If there are any other cool activities you think I should be doing while Miss B is out of commission, let me know! 


Thanks for that great article, Wesley.... but don't get too comfortable being the 'only' active dog....  I'll be back to normal in no time..... 


Summertime is CAMP TIME!

You may recall that every August Wesley and I join several of our friends at summer camp: Dog Days of Wisconsin.  This was our third year and we just have the best time.  It was unfortunate that it rained pretty much non-stop for Saturday through Monday, but we had some dry time on Friday.  Due to the rain some of our favorite activities were cancelled: Lure Coursing, Canoeing & Kayaking, etc.  But there were still lots of fun indoor activities to participate in.  It was all just as well for me, since with my recent knee injury, I would not have been allowed to participate in my favorite outdoor activities.  Wes did go for lots of hikes with Tracy, in the rain.  Neither of them care about a little water and since I shouldn't walk too far, I had to stay behind.  The good news is I was always left with a treat - Kongs filled with all kinds of stuff or a tennis ball.  So it wasn't too bad.

It all begin with a PIRATE night on Friday - we had pirate games: walk the plank, catch the pirate's eye, etc.  Tracy and I won a prize - a toy called the Big Mean Kitty.  I gave it to my friend Ernie, since he really liked it and besides I already have a Big Mean Kitty at home (Isabella).  It was a fun theme and many of us were dressed up like pirates or, in my case, a wench (see photo at left!).


Everyone dressed up:  Here's pirate Shell (in a puffy shirt) and fierce pirate Skippy.



Below are pirate Fiona and pirate Wesley who was thrilled he didn't have to wear an eye patch!  ARRGGGH!










As you know, Wesley is enjoying his 'alone time with Tracy' and he got lots of special attention.  He even got to hike down to the lake.  Because of the drizzly weather, they were the only ones down at the lake and Wes loved running around like he owned the place! 






Our cabin had some pretty cool costumes for the contest night.  We had a 'circus' troupe - and boy were we cute!   Miss Linda was our Ring Master and she introduced each of the circus performers.  She had really cool music on her iPod that she mixed just for each of us!   We had Gretchen (and Janet) the clowns and Gretchen even jumped through a paper hoop!  Very impressive.  Then I was a trapeze/gymnist - here I am leaving the stage after my act, where I found a box of tennis balls beside the stage - I'm sure they were left by one of my fans.  (You know how stars sometimes get flowers after a performance, well I figured someone had brought me balls!)  I am still disappointed that Tracy didn't let me keep any of them!




I was followed by Fiona the Circus Horse, she did several horse tricks including rearing up in the air while a monkey was riding on her back. 

Then came the fierce animals - a tiger (Skippy), a lion (Breezy - who was not a coward!) and last, a sad looking elephant (Wesley). 











We had a ball and we won first prize!!!  The whole camp was fun - even with the lousy weather. 












The gang got together for meals in the lodge, and it was a really good time.  I'm looking forward to next year and, since my knee will be all healed by then, I'm really going to cut loose!!! 




My Recovery!

There’s lots of talk in the news about people going to ‘rehab’ for ‘recovery’.  It seems lots of famous people on TV do it.  Hmmm… is their rehab like mine?  For me, it’s a lot of hard work, but it’s also kind of fun! 

As many of you know, I injured my knee (torn cruciate ligament) and had TPLO surgery at the end of May.  The bone they cut and repositioned is healed, but I’m still afraid to put too much strain on that back leg.  To help me get back into proper condition and use, I have special exercises I have to do at home and I go to rehab at Integrative Pet Care (IPC) twice a week to work with my PPT’s (Pet Physical Therapists – my term, not sure what the official title is).  The home exercises are BORING, but the workouts at IPC are awesome!  Sure it’s tough work, but my friends there make it fun.  I usually work with Anna. (You may recall she and I were featured in Crain’s Business a few months back.)  We start with under-water treadmill, a little swimming and some therapeutic exercise.  She’s so good to me – she’ll put some heat packs on to help me warm up and ice my leg after our workout. 

I’m recovering well, but did have a little problem with my front tendon that attaches the knee cap to the tibia.  It was a little inflamed – probably from our recent visit to Iowa.  I didn’t get to have much activity on that trip, but there were a few times when I chased a couple of critters into the fields (deer, cows and of course, cats!).  I may have overdid it.  So we’re being very focused on the workouts and exercise.  My goal is to be back at Agility in November, which Dr. Julie thinks is possible.  I would LOVE to go to Long Beach, CA again in December for the Agility Invitational.  But that means I need to be back in tip top shape. 

Speaking of being in great shape – it’s important for all agility teams!  IPC is having some really cool conditioning seminars later this Fall – for agility handlers and dogs.  There are sessions focused on both – the DOGS and the PEOPLE.  How cool is that!  Unfortunately, my assistant will be traveling on business so we can’t attend (once again that other job comes first).  If you’re interested, you can find out more at .



Farewell my Friend :-(

My friend Pacey has been an inspiration for many.  Agility just didn't come easily for him, he really had to work at it - and he did!  With his partner Maribel, they were dedicated to learning new techniques and practicing, practicing.  That commitment paid off - they received many ribbons and titles (you've no doubt seen their pictures many times in the Ab Fabs column).  One thing Pacey didn't share with many of his agility friends was his health struggle.  He had severe seizures and several other issues that proved to be very frustrating for him (and painful at times).  Well, this past month my friend Pacey, with the love of his partner Maribel, left us here and made the trip to the Rainbow Bridge.  I will miss him, and seeing the great example that he and Maribel set. 






Shall We Dance?

My friend Lucy competes in Agility but her first love is dance.  She and her partner Jan are Freestyle experts and not only do they compete they also share their love of this sport with others by teaching classes and workshops in this fun sport. 

You've probably seen the video of the woman dancing with her Golden Retriever to one of the songs from Grease.  They are awesome, but there are a lot of people having fun with this sport:  Canine Freestyle: a piece of Americana  Tina Humphries Crufts 2007  fun video-2007  “So You Think You Can Dance 2007  TV Show in the UK, 2007

If any of you are interested in more information about Freestyle, let me know and I'll be happy to get you in touch with Jan & Lucy.


Pup Pics




Shell Bell has BABIES!!!


My dachshund buddy Shelly (Blond Bombshell is her real name!) had her first litter of pups.  Here they are with mom at two weeks old.  Could they be any cuter?  Shelly is a really nice pup, although she will try to be the boss of me once in a while and you know how that goes over.  Wes absolutely loves her - the likes to play whenever he's with her and of course sniff her privates.  Big congrats to Mom Shelly (and Sharon too!).












Ab Fabs

Absolutely Fabulous Canine Accomplishments!

Please send your accomplishments to



Born to Earth Dog!


You may recall that in a prior Tattler my friend Alex (Jack Russell Terrier) and his mom Joan had a very cool article about Earth Dog.  Well, Alex may be 13 years old but he's not slowing down when it comes to Earth Dog.  He just got his Junior Earthdog title!  A dog needs two qualifying scores to receive the title and Alex got his on it on his 2nd and 3rd attempts.  The first time he qualified he was the only one of 12 dogs to do so!  Today he was one of three qualifiers in a class of 22.  Pretty impressive!  One of the others to qualify was my friend Ty, who was the fastest to get to the quarry.  The dogs are allowed 30 seconds to find the rat and Ty got there in 13!   This is what this breed is made for and it sure shows! 


Big congrats to Alex!!!! 


And of course, those Riccelli girls had a great August...

August 19th obedience event St.Joe Valley: Bella did well in Rally with 95&leg 2.
Blitzen Agility August 24,25,26 in McCook Ill.Bella earn 2 Novice agility legs in Standard,with 2nd&3rd place, her JWW was good,but no Q's.
Also Bella did 2 UKC obedience trails at TCDTC 8-18-07.  In the second trial she got a 191 and 2nd place. 

NOW  DB has been GREAT....(same dates as Bella above) she got Rally leg1 Advance with a score of 92.  In  Agility she had 3 good runs with legs in EXA P JWW with two 2nds & a 1st with perfect scores and a title!  In

Open  P Standard she got 3rd place & her title.

Shadow is recooping from a psoas pull,will be back in action in October.