HOME sweet HOMEFrom the Happy Trails Kennels blog
We have been enjoying our few days at home before Round 2. Martin took several runs with the nonQuest dogs and is very happy with their performance. Our Vet, Dr. Beatsle, came out to the Kennel to do our official Iditarod VET check. We always depend on him to provide an objective, medical perspective of each dog. He was happy to see the recovery of the Quest dogs and in fact, said he probably couldn't tell who had gone and who had stayed home, had Martin not told him. Quest dogs weights are within +,- 2 pounds of their PRE Quest weight. He did find some minor issues to disqualify 2 or 3 dogs but we wanted him to do that since Martin can't take them all. His thorough evaluation finds any little weakness. Martin noted that DeVille had a strange bob of his head and the doc checked his eyes, even took him to the clinic to stain the eye to look for any problems and concluded that Deville was good to go and may have had sensitivity to light at some time in the past. We are always impressed with the care and attention our athletes get from Dr. Beatsle and the entire staff at the Big Lake Susitna Veterinary clinic. Their team is and has been for a long time, an invaluable resource to our kennel.
I've been doing last minute preparation for our departure, cooking the base for the moose stew for Open House and following up on the email and mail due to our absence on our Quest adventure. Nikolai will be 21 on March 21st so I had to get a birthday package in the mail to him before Martin and I leave. I almost had Nikolai in Nome and had to be medivaced back to Providence Hospital in Anchorage for his delivery. He was born right after the Nome Finish Banquet. he once even sang the Iditarod song on the stage in Nome.
Sadly, this is our first Iditarod without the boys at the start and/or finish. We miss them lots. However, we are so happy that both boys are very independent and are enjoying college life.
Today, Martin gave a presentation for the Iditarod Teacher's Group here at the kennel. It's always fun to see such widespread interest in the race. Tomorrow night is the Iditarod Banquest where mushers draw numbers for their starting position. Will let you know how that all ends up!!!