Ode to Two Small Puppies

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Published on: January 16, 2018

 

In memory of Sally & Leia Ison, the original Two Small Puppies.

They spent their entire lives together, and now will be together forever over Rainbow Bridge.

We passed so many milestones with Sally and Leia by our side – we bought a house, we got married, we moved house, we sold a house, we bought a business. They travelled interstate with us in a Mitsubishi Mirage, a Subaru Forester and a Hyuandai iMax. They learned tricks to entertain visitors at pet expos. They showed us the pure happiness of Beagles off-lead at the beach. They kept a dozen foster dogs company, they welcomed another 7 dogs in to our lives, and they did it all together as constant companions.

They were meant to live so much longer. They were supposed to get old together, get cantankerous together and start telling off the young whipper snappers together. But cancer took them from us too soon.

We take solace in the fact they remain together.

We miss you Wally and Bear.

They are meant to live forever…

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Published on: January 3, 2018

 

Life can be so cruel. I can’t believe here I am, 4 months after losing Leia, that I’m now paying tribute to our beautiful Sally “Wally Wals” Ison. Our beautiful sisters. The ones responsible for all this.

On the Thursday before Christmas, Sally was devastatingly diagnosed with Lymphoma. The vet informed us she had 4 to 8 weeks to live. We never had the chance with Leia to do her favourite things before she passed. In this sad time, we were thankful to be given an opportunity to make that up and give Sally some great days doing her favourite things. These things included snacks (she was a beagle after all), the beach and running the car.

Unfortunately, the universe had other ideas. We were fortunate that we were able to take Sally to the beach on Christmas eve with her friends, and Christmas Day with her pack. During Christmas day, Sally deteriorated. I was hoping she was just not happy with the approaching storms on Christmas night. Wouldn’t it have been nice if that was the case.

At midnight, she woke me up panting and trembling, and I knew what this meant, but I didn’t want to believe it. I just couldn’t believe after 4 months, we were going through the exact same thing. I tried to offer her food to take a pain killer, but she turned her nose up. We wanted to say goodbye to Sally at home, surrounded by her family, but that wasn’t meant to be.

If I had of known we had days, not weeks, I wouldn’t have let you go. I would have hugged you and kissed you endlessly so you knew how much we loved you.

Sally was the beautiful, dignified lady of our pack. She was top dog and led the morning chorus for breakfast, was always first off lead at the beach, loved her toys, and as each new generation of Asalei beagles was introduced, she was first to teach them manners.

She was a loved member of the family and she will be greatly missed.

It’s been three months…

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Published on: November 28, 2017

… and the pain is still unbelievably strong. When people spoke about their “heart dogs”, I just thought I loved each of my dogs. Well, I do, but maybe in different ways. Andrew and I both feel a huge sense of loss with Leia being gone. It’s so quiet at home, our arms don’t have scratch marks from wanting demanding to be patted. Our bed is empty from where she would stretch out and snore her little head off. But, we must move on, right?

I wish I could get over the loss as easily as our pack seems to have. I think they’ve grieved and just moved on. Whilst I have grieved, and I have moved forward, the sense of loss is like nothing else. I miss her so much. Time doesn’t stop for no one.

On Sunday, it was their 11th birthday. As hard as this day was, I put on my big girl pants, my brave face, held back those tears and we went to the beach for a sunset run. I love being able to take these photos and capture the memories our minds will one day forget. Sally and Leia loved the beach, so what better way to celebrate Sally’s birthday than a trip to the Spit at Southport, Queensland.

My happy place, my heart.

Happy birthday Sally and Leia <3

My Bears – I hope they had a beach, a remote control car and grandma’s cupcakes for you over rainbow bridge.

 

No matter when it happens, it’s always too soon…

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Published on: August 22, 2017
Leia “Bear” Ison – 26/11/2006 to 17/08/2017

Where do I start?

The past few weeks have been tough, and at no stage did I think we’d have to be saying good bye to our sweet heart Leia, or Bears to us.

On the 17th August, 2017, the shining light in our lives, left us for Rainbow Bridge. Leia was 10 years, 8 months, and 27 days old. Of that, we got to spend 10 years, 7 months and 3 days with the most amazing dog.

She had a quirky personality, she was very vocal, her internal alarm clock for 4pm was just amazing – it was spot on every time!

When we went to pick out a puppy, it was Leia we chose. On the drive home, Andrew and I decided that we wanted another one and there were two left. Ricky and Sally. We decided to choose Sally and from then, they were together every day of that 10 years, 8 months and 27 days Leia lived on this earth. When we went to pick them up as babies, we asked which ones were ours and Belinda exclaimed “that one over there escaping, and the one sitting there barking”. Great we thought, what have we got ourselves into! Everyone told us we were stupid for getting a beagle, and crazy for getting two!

Fortunately for us, Sally and Leia were amazing dogs. They taught us so much, and their love and devotion for us was second to none. People always told us to get them used to “being apart” so they wouldn’t rely on each other. But, us knowing so much more than other people with our first ever dogs, decided we knew better and we let them be together. We got them so they could be together, it seemed stupid to separate them. The bond they had started from babies when we were told from Belinda that they were always together and she was glad they went together.

On the 19th January, 2007, our adventures into beagledom started. Sally and Leia are responsible for a lot of our life choices. We had to buy a bigger car and move from our inner city house to acreage. We’ve met some amazing people along the way, who we regard as wonderful friends. There was one particular special person who once told me, “Once you get two, then comes three, then four, then comes the van, then a bigger house, and before you know it… ” Here we are.

As Leia lied on her favourite bed from Grandmas in our back yard on a gorgeous winter’s day, we reminisced about her adventures in life, the beach trips, the farm visits, beagle walks, beagle camps, lurecoursing, Christmas in July in Gympie…  I told her she was responsible for all of this as I kissed her gorgeous little face. The Beagle Bus, the acreage and the 9 other dogs that were lying around her as if they were forming some guard of honour. It was all for you Bears.

My fondest memories will always be of Leia at the beach and how happy she was. She was in her element, the wind blowing her ears back, trotting along through the water. It was her happy place.

I hope you had the time of your life Bear Bears, I miss you so much it hurts 🙁

 

Introducing…. CH Dins!

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Published on: August 3, 2017

If you’ve been following my posts on the blog, our little “Tan Head”, or Dinnies to us, can now Officially be know as Australia Champion Asalei Monkey Shenanigans (AI).

Dinnies is a very sound dog, with lovely sound movement, reaching side gait, solid topline, gorgeous pleading expression, and a gay tail. The gay tail let him down, and whilst it is a fault in the standard, no dog is perfect. I felt Dinnies had a lot of things right, that others have wrong and deserved to gain his title. I just needed to find those judges who saw his positive virtues, over his gay tail. The challenge points he did receive were quite large ones and he earned his title in style with a Best of Breed over his mother, and Australian Bred in Group under Mr Graham Kerr. Mr Kerr has previously had beagles and exclaimed how gorgeous Dinnies head was and the pleading expression he has.

I decided to keep Dinnies and continue showing him, as while yes, he does have a gay tail, he has many other great points, along with the best health testing results out of all my dogs.

Here’s to 🌟Champion Asalei Monkey Shenanigans (AI) 🌟! Abby’s second champion progeny and our second home bred Champion!

 

More great results!

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Published on: August 3, 2017

Keeper and Oscar have both continued their winning ways recently with classes in group and Keeper converting one to a Reserve Neuter in Show under a Beagle Specialist!

Oscar continues to consistently receive the reserve challenges behind two Supreme Champions and has on a few occasions, beaten his Grandmother for Runner Up Best of Breed!

I’m so extremely proud of how these two boys are showing! Oscar took a back seat while I was showing Dinnies (… more on that soon!) and hasn’t really been shown much. But lately he’s certainly making his presence felt! I look forward to what the future holds for Oscar!

Abby and Noosha are on a roll with winning the Bitch Challenge points and we are edging ever so closer to her Grand Championship Title!

Keeper winning Neuter in Show at The Hound Club of QLD
Keeper winning Reserve Neuter in Show under Beagle Specialist, Mr Peerapong Pisitwuttinan
Oscar winning 1st in Puppy Sweepstakes under Ms C Gunn

The power of photography

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Published on: July 14, 2017

 

Photo by Alicia Adamopoulos

Being behind the camera most of the time, there are never really photos of me with my dogs, other than selfies and dog show win photos.

Nearly 10 years ago, Alicia and Alex Kennison from (then) Savvy Studios photographed our wedding on the 07/07/07. I desperately wanted our little girls in the photos, but family and friends said that was silly. What if they barked? What if they jumped on my dress? My response was “who cares!” So I never got those wedding photos with my girls on our wedding day.

Nearly 10 years on, Sally and Leia are still here. While they are aging, and ailing… they are still here. I wanted to capture them in their senior years, and how I want to remember them for eternity.

When they are gone, photos are all you have. Don’t wait, go out there and get those photos done if you want them!

I can’t thank Alicia enough for creating these amazing photos and giving me some wonderful memories that I will treasure, forever.

 

It’s Show Time!

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Published on: May 4, 2017

Now the weather is starting to cool down, it’s time to start hitting some shows! We ventured to Durack last weekend for the Western Suburbs Kennel Club shows under an international panel. My boys did me proud and came away with some frilly ribbons.

Ch & Neut Ch Beagelee Keep The Spirit “Keeper” was Neuter in Group under Mrs P Lanctot (Canada). Mrs Lanctot had lovely words to say about my beautiful boy and wondered why he had been neutered. Sometimes, we just have to make those decision, for the health and well being of our babies. Keeper is now such a happy dog who’s enjoying life and due to Neuter Classes, I’m still able to exhibit this beautiful boy for Judges to look at. I always wonder what he could have been capable of achieving if he were still entire…. But at the end of the day, we still have our gorgeous boy in our lives to enjoy and love for the rest of his life. THAT is worth more than any show wins.

Ch & Neut Ch Beagelee Keep The Spirit

 

Our young boy Asalei Golden Keepsake “Oscar” also had a great weekend, being awarded Puppy in Group on Sunday under Ms Mary White (USA) and Reserve Challenge Dog against older competition on Monday under Mrs P Lanctot (Canada). Oscar is still really only a baby at under 9 months of age, he’s only had four shows where he’s been eligible for the Challenge and has walked away with two Reserve Challenges. I’m very proud of this boy! He will take time to mature, but I’m willing to wait. He still shows the great promise he did as a baby! Oscar is the Grandson and Nephew of Keeper.

Asalei Golden Keepsake – 8.5 months

 

Thank you to Stephen Uebel for the photos of our boys.

What’s Easter without the NSW specialties?

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Published on: April 13, 2017

This year will be the first year in 7 years that I haven’t made the trek to Sydney for their specialties. I do kind of feel like I’m missing out, but I can’t selfishly expect my husband to drive to Sydney and back over 4 days when he’s been working 60+ hour weeks for quite a few weeks now in our business. Sometimes, there’s other things that need considering before a dog show.

I’m sure our dogs won’t complain about not having to sit in the car for 12 hours! We usually do the trip through the night, so the dogs can sleep as normal.

I thought I’d share some wonderful memories of Sydney that I’ve had with Abby over the years. From her very first specialty in NSW where she went Baby in Show under Mrs Sally Kimber, to her numerous class in shows, many best headed bitches, and class placements in big classes.

 

Good luck to all those showing over Easter!

Our amazing results for 2017 continue!

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Published on: March 29, 2017

Our second show for 2017, and another fantastic result for our beagles. Poppy (Ch Houndmaster Gold Threads) was awarded a 17 point Best of Breed, and then went on to win Runner Up Best In Group (Group 2) from 108 hounds entered under hound specialist, Ms Liane Horne (QLD).

I haven’t shown Poppy much since she arrived 12 months ago, but the times I have shown her, she’s done very well and exceeded my expectations.

I look forward to what the future holds for Poppy!

Thank you to Patrik Berger for these wonderful photos of Poppy from Saturday night.

Ch Houndmaster Gold Threads – Photo by Patrik Berger
Ch Houndmaster Gold Threads – Photo by Patrik Berger
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