Archive for the ‘Tuisku’ Categoryby Northernmost on October 29, 2013 in ACTIVITIES & WORK, Agility & Rally, Carting & Bikejoring, Hilary, Leia, Thunder, Titan, Tuisku, Wilder with No Comments
That pretty much sums up October here on the northern coast. While waiting for snow and winter to arrive we keep ourselves and the dogs busy by attending training sessions at the dog club and going for runs with the wagon or bicycle.
When working the dogs in the evenings we use a dead-end forest road that has a locked barrier at the start, that way we can be certain not to encounter any traffic. Occasionally an elk or two cross the road but they always see and hear us long before we see them.
It’s been a rainy October and the roads are wet and muddy. Needless to say, we have some very dirty dogs at home 😉
A couple of times each week we go to the club to train together with other dog owners. In addition to the regular training sessions we have joined a group that specialises in rally and trains with the goal of becoming competitive. If things go well maybe we’ll be able to enter a dog or two to some competitions next year.
Wilder is a fast learner and his food motivation makes him “easy” to train. At the same time he’s an easily distracted teenager who cannot focus on one thing for too long. Thus, we try to keep training sessions short and make sure they always end while we’re still having fun. Patience and consistency is my mantra...
Hilary made a new friend at the club – a 4-month old Golden Retriever girl whose owner had brought her along for socialisation.
Hilary loves to play with puppies so I think this girl had a very positive experience 🙂
In the weekends we go for long walks to soak up as much daylight as possible. Titan and Wilder love to run back and forth on the beach and in and out of the cold water.
The sun sets early in the afternoon and it usually gets dark before we are back home.
The boys looked a tiny bit tired after their romp on the beach.
While Wilder is in adolescence we return to training basic things, like encouraging good indoor manners for example. Right now he is going through the second chewing phase so when he visits indoors we practise the “leave the shoes alone and chew on this toy instead” routine. I think it will take some time before we can trust him with our shoes in the hallway but it has worked with all our other Mals so I’m confident it will work with Wilder too. Eventually 😉
Lyra completed her first WPD-leg last weekend, hiking 23.6 kilometres on a round trip on the Furuögrund Trail on Skellefteå’s northern coast together with her buddy Tuisku. It’s been a warm and sunny end to August here in northern Sweden and last Sunday there was hardly a cloud in the sky and we worried it may be too warm for a packing excursion. Luckily the trail followed the coastline closely and the dogs were able to cool down in the sea from time to time. We have been building up the weight gradually during our evening walks this summer and this was the first time that Lyra carried full weight (30% of her body weight) in her back pack. She did a great job and showed how much she enjoys being out on the trail and performing a job.
Sledog Dream Leaper, aka “Lyra”, at 2 years of age.
Crossing the Salmon Bridge over Byske River at the start of the hike.
For the most part the trail hugged the beautiful coastline between Byske and Furuögrund.
Being so close to the waves, Tuisku of course had to go for a swim…
Lyra relaxing on the beach, enjoying the cool breeze from the sea.
She took a brief nap during our lunch break…
...and Tuisku too.
Part of the trail was marked by wooden walkways.
We climbed up to the top of a lighthouse to admire the view.
When we returned home in the evening a thick fog had rolled in from the Bothnian Bay.
Well done Lyra on completing your first WPD-leg!
We’re hoping to explore more of our local trails this autumn, as one of the many great things about the AMCA Working Dog Program is that you can most often carry out legs towards your dogs’ working titles in your local area (depending a little on where you live) and do not need to spend hours (or days!) in the car to reach the location of a centralised test. This way, the AMCA program truly encourages people to work their dogs and that’s what a working program should be all about, right?
Back in May I painted the dog houses in the puppy pen and this week I’ve painted three more dog houses in a deep red colour. Since our home and guest house are painted red we’re using the same paint for the dog houses. This colour is very effective in preserving wood and since it allows the wood to breathe it minimises the risk of rot. In addition it is very simple to maintain; As the paint ages, you can brush it off and repaint without using a scraper. I think the dog houses look very neat in red, if I may say so myself 🙂
To be safe, we have not painted the parts of the dog house that the dogs may chew on, for example the entrances and corners, as most paints can be poisonous for dogs.
Pretty Lyra says hello from inside her house. She usually shares pen with Tuisku.
A freshly bathed Tuisku in his prime, at 8 years of age.
I still have three more dog houses to paint and after that we’re going to scrub the wooden decks that the dog houses are built on and put on some new (non-toxic) oil on to make the wood last longer. Only a couple of months left before the start of autumn so we better get going with our summer chores!
Tuisku’s handsome son Tulisalon Northern Shaman, aka “Joiku”, became Finnish Champion today when winning Best of Breed at Hyvinkää, Finland. He gained his title on his 3-year birthday – what a way to celebrate!! We extend a big congrats to Joiku’s breeder Susanna Kauppi and to his owners, Jenni Holopainen and Jarmo Leppänen. Joiku finished the day by going Best in Group-2!
Tulisalon Northern Shaman “Joiku” new Finnish Champion under judge Raisa Savander in Hyvinkää. BOS was Lyybek Soul Wilhelmina.
Joiku Best of Breed at Hämeenlinna two weeks ago, under judge Juha Putkonen, Finland.
This week our hay has been harvested in preparation for winter. After a couple of warm and sunny days the hay was ready to move into the barn, where it will continue to dry in the loft.
We have been thinking of possibly making this space into a play area for the dogs next year. Our other play area (you can see the fence in the background) is in a more shady corner of the garden and it would be nice for the dogs to have more sunshine, especially during winter. But fencing is hard work so it’s not exactly a project we’re looking forward to…although I’m sure it would be worthwhile.
Our beautiful boys Tuisku and Wilder are celebrating their birthdays this week; Wilder turns 6 months old today and Tuisku turns 8 years old on Wednesday. Below are some recent pics of the two 🙂
The weeks are flying by right now and we’re busy from sunrise to sunset. I haven’t been able to keep up with my email lately due to a busy schedule at work, but I promise to get back to each and everyone as soon as my summer holiday starts. Below are some pics from this weekend’s agility fun with the gang. All dogs took part except for Thunder, who spent the day being pampered at Grandma’s. Our best jumpers are definitely Leia and Hilary who have great technique and fly effortlessly through the obstacles. But everyone did their best and had FUN! And that’s all that matters 🙂
Sunday is funday here in Nedre Bäck and yesterday was a perfect day to train agility in the garden. After a cloudy morning the sun came out in the afternoon and for the first time in weeks there wasn’t a single mosquito in sight! Yay!! We have a handful of very basic agility obstacles that we bring out just for fun in the weekends. Our goal is not to become competitive but to keep our Malamutes active and happy during the summer months. Like most dogs, our Mals love agility!
Who is there??
Wilder started off by watching the others, then he tried some of the obstacles himself.
The closed chute was a bit strange at first…
Agility is a great way to build a dog’s attention and contact. We only train each dog for short sessions at a time, making sure it never becomes boring or too hard. This is especially important when training puppies. We strive to always end the training on a high note!
And the obstacles are of course adjusted to suit puppies 😉
Hilary was third out and was whining a little in her dog pen when she had to wait for her turn. Hilary is normally a very quiet dog but she loves agility so much that waiting around wasn’t easy.
We finally let her out so that she could show Wilder how to jump through the ring…
…and after we had adjusted the height a little, Wilder completed the jump too 🙂
Tuisku also did some agility but he still has a lot of coat so yesterday was a bit too warm for him. Hopefully, after his next bath what’s left of his undercoat will be gone.
With a new puppy at home we spend a lot of time on establishing good relationships between the new pack member and our older dogs. Hilary has done a wonderful job of welcoming Wilder and they are already the best of friends. On Monday we introduced Wilder to Titan during an evening walk in the woods and yesterday it was eight-year-old Tuisku’s turn to spend some one-on-one time with our new boy. Wilder is a cool kid who doesn’t get overly excited about things. He is keen to make friends but at the same time has a streak of independence about him. When he meets new people he is curious and likes to give kisses, but in a calm and polite sort of way. I think he’ll have many different pet names as he grows up, but right now we call him Mr Cool 😉
Hello, what’s your name?
Maybe we’ll just sit here for a while and smell the dandelions together.
We’re having an early summer here on Sweden’s northern coast. 25ºC (77º F) and hardly no wind.
Tuisku is more comfortable now when most of his underocat is gone. It took two baths and lots and lots of brushing, as his winter coat was really thick!
As always, Tuisku got the zoomies as he just looves being near water.
Looks like Wilder is a Water-Mal too. Hopefully he’ll be equally happy about having a bath at home. Tuisku has always loved to swim in lakes, rivers and the ocean – but for some reason he loathes the bathtub!
We stayed at the beach till sunset. The world is so incredibly beautiful this time of the year. I’m having “press pause moments” at least once every day ♥
We’ve been away on a wilderness adventure with Lyra, Hilary, Tuisku and Thunder, travelling on the ice of the frozen lakes of Tjaktajaure and Laitaure and making daytrips into the magnificent Sarek National Park in Swedish Lapland. Fantastic weather, amazing views and happy, hardworking dogs – what more could you ask for? The only hiccup on this trip were our sleeping bags that didn’t perform when the temperature dropped down to around -20ºC (-4ºF) at night. But with a warm dog to snuggle up to it wasn’t a huge problem. We learn something from every trip; about ourselves and the gear, and what needs to be improved before we set out on our next adventure. We can’t complain about the dogs though, they went like clockwork from day one, displaying the drive and stamina which we have come to expect from them, even though they always manage to amaze us just a little more on each trip. Without our Alaskan Malamutes, we’d sure miss out on some great adventures in life!
We had fantastic weather during most of our trip…
…but we started the journey in an almost complete whiteout which forced us to rely on the map and compass for navigation as we couldn’t see much of the surrounding landscape, just snow and mist and a myriad of trails to choose from.
The next morning, and during the rest of our trip, we had brilliant sunshine and temperatures around -12ºC (10ºF) – ideal conditions for the dogs who could work at a good pace without getting too warm.
Lyra and Tuisku with the Sarek National Park in the backdrop.
We set up camp in the woods near the mountain of Tjahkkelij where we found a spring with crystal clear water for us and the dogs. Having access to water is a luxury on winter camping trips as melting snow for drinking and cooking can be a time-consuming process.
Our dogs took turns sleeping in the tent and did a good job keeping us warm at night.
After setting up camp we were able to leave our gear behind and go on fun day trips to explore the landscape. In this photo Fredrik is on his way to Nammásj – a holy mountain in the Sámi tradition.
Hilary and Thunder, with Skierffe’s peak in the background.
We could have stayed on the trail for many more days, continuing the trip further into the Rapa Valley, but unfortunately work and other duties called us back to civilization.
While most people probably prefer to have their holiday during the summer, our ideal would be to have the whole month of April off, to be able to go on longer journeys into the wild. Maybe next year?
To view more photos from our trip, visit our Aktse April 2013 Gallery.
We woke up to fantastic weather today and hurried to change into skijoring gear and hit the trail. I Skijored with Tuisku and Fredrik with Thunder and Lyra. A fast, fun and sunny day with the wind at our backs. I fell over once and dropped the camera in the snow (glad it’s waterproof) but apart from that we had a fab day! 🙂