After the snake bite incident of 2020, we started thinking and also acknowledged that Sequoia was coming up on eleven years old and had a penchant for tempting death as she’s on her fifth or sixth life I think. As summer drew to a close, we started thinking that we would consider getting a third dog so that Tikka would have an established partner puppy for when the time came to say farewell to ‘Quoia Puppy. We agreed and also agreed and decided to go through a breeder rather than adopt.
Now I want to establish that we 100% support adoption and Cedar Girl was an adopted pupper. That being said, there is something that needs to be addressed regarding a good, responsible, caring and dedicated breeder. When it is done right, you are investing in your dogs health and in a way you are prepaying for an insurance policy of sorts. You know that both mom and dad are genetically tested and are suitable for breeding and with a responsible breeder, you are having the best care possible.
SO remember the friends that we were able to make through dock jumping with Tikka? We had kept in touch with the facebook page she maintained for her business. I reached out and indicated that we were going to be looking for a puppy in the near future. Needless to say, we got in touch really quickly and discussed what we were looking for in a puppy, something a good, responsible breeder does in order to make sure you are a good fit and suitable to provide a home to one of their puppies and to familiarize yourself with the practices of the breeder. After discussing options, we placed a deposit for a fox red female puppy. I was so happy and it seemed like everything was falling into place; we would have a chocolate lab, a black lab and the fox red color is technically a yellow lab so we would have one of each flavor how fun!
Now when it came to naming the puppy, it was my turn. With my first two puppies, Cedar was actually the name that she came with from the humane society. It was meant to be as she was a “present” of sorts from my best friends who knew I was looking for a dog and wanted to buy her for me when I was ready and their last name is homophonic of my Cedar girl-It had to be and she was meant to be mine, especially as I was the fourth on a hold / wait list for her.
Sequoia was named as I wanted to continue the theme of trees. I had a friend with a dog named Aspen…I heard that poor pup’s nick names and that was a no go. Willow? Megh…and I eventually narrowed it down to two names: Sitka and Sequoia. I actually greatly preferred the name Sitka, but I didn’t want to confuse the poor girl so I defaulted to Sequoia / ‘Quoia.
So what about Tikka? I really wanted to continue with the theme of trees, but Tikka is the first dog that the Dogfather and I had as a couple and I really wanted an equal say in what we would name her. We brainstormed a lot, circled back to Willow, Pine, Maple, Cherry, Teak…Teak…hmmmm this, Dogfather lit up…Tikka, one of his preferred manufacturers of rifles. So Tikka is a combo of my Teak tree and Tikka rifles.
So while it was a consensus on Tikka, I pulled a little rank and with the relationship that Tikka has with the Dogfather, I was adamant that this new puppy would be MY puppy and that I WOULD be the favorite human. I’m not jealous, you’re jealous to the relationship they have. (Tikka does love me too, I feed her, hahaha!). This puppy was going to be mine and I would name her. So while I took a break at work and walked along the North Platte, I pulled up on my phone a list of dog names and stumbled on a classic one…Lady.
I could have my little red ladybug!
I was fixated and convinced this was perfect and also honored another dog in my family history. Way back before I was born, my family moved and worked a dairy farm in New York Mills, Minnesota. On this farm, they inherited a black lab / something mix and named her Lady. From every story I heard Lady was the epitome of the perfect farm dog and was elegant and graceful as well. But when you compared to the other inherited / adopted farm dog of Boo-Boo, the clumsy accident prone Saint Bernard, it wasn’t hard.
I never got to experience the Lady of the Past, so we would have our Lady now! So the time came, and Momma puppy delivered her litter of potatoes and only had two females. I was a little heartbroken as I was so excited for my little red ladybug, but we have to let the puppy gods lead us to the right puppy for us and a red puppy wasn’t it. Now what was great for me but not great for our poor breeder is that it seems that everyone cycles together and she had five momma puppies all due to give birth within roughly three weeks of each other if I recall correctly. All litters are born happy and healthy with proud momma puppies.
While checking the facebook page for the breeder, she announces that one of the hold for her rare dilute litter fell through and there was a female on the hunt for a family from this litter. I immediately jumped on it. Luck and opportunity are there for you to seize, the puppy gods can lead you to the right one, but you are still responsible for the action. We were then able to secure our puppy and the timing would be absolutely perfect. My fall season is jam packed working six days a week on average officiating volleyball for the schools. We would be able to get her the week after all volleyball ended and we would have the time available to dedicate to raising and potty training a puppy.
But we now have to try and figure out which of the puppies we would get. I really wanted to let the Dogfather have a strong say in which puppy is the one for us and we fall back on our previous methodology as how we selected Tikka got us an one of the best, sweetest, happiest dogs anyone could ever ask for. We looked and found the puppy with the bolo spots. What are bolo spots? These are the white spots that sometimes appear on the paws of Labradors which supposedly harkens back to one of the “original” Labrador Retriever, Banchory Bolo. We’ve heard that they are not as desirable but we love our spots!
On November 11, 2020, our Little Lady came home, but she came with a little emotional baggage. You see, at some point, and we completely can see how it happened, Lady had the tip of her tongue bit off by a littermate. She literally has a forked tongue and it does inhibit two of her abilities. 1. She is a messy drinker as she can’t make a cup out of her tongue as there is literally no tip to it and 2. When she gives kisses, her tongue rolls in on itself and you get a super slimy under tongue kiss.
But I digress, because of the missing tip, we were warned that she might be a little clingy and needy for attention which is perfect as I was adamant to make this puppy all mine (and I succeeded) Sequoia is over puppies though at this point in her life and while all Lady wants is to give and receive affection, Sequoia especially wants absolutely none of it. SO the air kisses that Lady gives to Sequoia out of respect that she doesn’t want full on kisses and the trauma of having the tip bit off are typically met with barks of get away.
Tikka while definitely still the alpha dog of dogs, she it the most motherly and tolerant dog ever, she cuddles, teaches and corrects Lady and Lady has been one of the easiest to train dogs we ever have experienced. That being said she is also 100% a puppy…holy energy puppy, this girl is non stop and LOVES her tennis balls. But the cuddles and love she gives is without comparison and is quite the athlete as well. We can’t wait until all the COVID shenanigans stop and we can travel to take both Lady and Tikka Dock jumping again.
SO that everything in a nutshell for all three of our pups we have right now and hope you enjoyed our sharing about our children, we hear that our listen better than the more conventional version. We’d love to hear you brag about yours, furry or human in the comments below!
Bye All Y’alls!