Tag Archives: Agility

The Gift That Keeps On Giving…

February 26, 2016

During the FeHoVa 2016 international Dog Show in Budapest, Hungary, I’ve noticed that one dog owner specifically kept pulling away her dog from me when my amorous Kaffogo Agyag has kept pulling after her male Pumi. First I thought she was simply unfriendly, however, once her dog was in a “safe distance” under control, she was open to engage in  conversation with me.  When I asked  her why she did not let her dog to play with Agyag and Fruska, her answer was, that she was worrying about canine herpes virus… We’ve all heard of the disease, however, for many breeders and dog owners CHV remains in the realm of the abstract.

So we started talking….

As a farmer who have bred horses, sheep and goats I’ve known about rhino, or “Rhino pneumonitis”, the equine herpes virus. Due to the size of horses, rhino caused abortion is a truly dramatic experience.  Ovines (sheep) can also host the Ovine Herpes Virus 2 that causes an inapparent infection, a condition that we closely monitor here on the farm so we can prevent it.

Canine herpes virus is also an ugly disease. Those who are not so familiar with the details of CHV, might be able learn something from this article. I know, that I certainly would have been able to use a collection of more readily available readings on a website or the advice of  seasoned breeders on breeding and  health related issues in the past and even today.  Hope this article can help to point to the right direction for further readings and to change behaviors when dealing with communicable diseases.

New born puppies are exciting news. Dog pregnancy is a relatively short event and through social media we can closely follow our  “friends'” pregnant dogs and new born litters. With the help of the internet, we are right there in the breeder’s living room or barn… witnessing the pregnancy and new lives.

Unfortunately, sometime, we also witness abortions, stillbirth, pups born weak and die unexpectedly with no previous signs within one- to-four weeks.  We express our condolence and mourn along based on the pattern of the 24-hour news cycle and then move on.  We do not follow up,  and do not go back to ask the question, “what happened…?”  It is considered inappropriate in the eye of public opinion, as opposed to considering it as a learning opportunity and possibly helping others.

In the age of our sanitized virtual relationships across continents, objective discussions  have been considered as impolite.  A friend of mine who is older than Marshall McLuhan’s phrase, “the medium is the message” and who ironically also  happens to be a Canadian (like McLuhan), after she got acquainted with Facebook not long ago, asked her newly acquired Facebook friends for their phone numbers so she could call them instead of  communicating over FB – it seemed less complicated, more effective and goal oriented to her…I guess, she just did not get it… “I thought we were friends after all…” she often told me when talking about her FaceBook friends…

So some fetuses get aborted, or just never fully develop and born or the newborn puppies simply die after birth in a short period of time. Among those who survive, some remains weak and lethargic and perhaps appears to have respiratory or organ problems, nerve damages, mental and behavioral issues.  The cause of the incident does not get tracked down by the breeder, the question remains open, and most likely subjective logic gets applied to explain the misfortune.  This is one way how  taboos and myths born in dog breeding circles.

Canine herpes virus is a frustrating highly contagious diseases that is more frequent than one would think of. 80% of kenneled dogs can come into contact with the virus while among  “in home” kept dogs, the infection rate is much lower, 20-25%.  Ironically,  pet dogs that have been kept in homes as opposed to kennels, when contracted the virus, have shown more severe symptoms  than dogs that are frequently kenneled. In contrast, show dogs who are exposed to low levels of the virus on a regular basis, can develop certain resistance to suppress flare ups.

When talking about Canine herpes virus, a certain cultural bias is unavoidable. I’ve read some studies about canine herpes virus infection rates in England, Belgium and Turkey. (“A serological study of canine herpes virus-1 infection in the English dog population” Reading MJ et al. Arch Virol 1998, – there was a similar  study published in Belgium  by Ronnse V, et. al. Reprod Domest Anim. 2002 – and in Turkey  by Yesilbag K et al. Res Vet Sci. 2012)   Before reading these articles, my prediction, based on my short experience in these countries, listed Turkey as probably the most affected one by the CHV among the three countries listed.  I imagine, many of you would assume the same outcome. Objective reality however, turned out to be different. The studies have basically shown a very similar CHV infection rate  in all three countries.

Dogs can get infected  with the virus anywhere anytime through nasal, oral and vaginal secretion. Most frequent places can be dog shows, like the annual  Westminster Kennel Club Show (to shock you!) or the annual AKC Eukanuba Agility trial (another place where the ELITE appears…) for the “menu chiens” simply dog runs, dog training places, even vet offices can be “ideal” locations of contracting the disease. In short, CHV do not discriminate…

What can tip the scale in favor of countries with a higher puppy survival rate  is, the so called” higher dog culture” ( for lack of a better definition…) that is basically a higher quality post partum care.  If the fetus did not die before birth, CHV can also be transmitted to  the pups through the birth canal and oral or nasal infection. Because puppies cannot control their body temperature before three weeks of age, the virus that thrives in lower temperature (97-99F), infects the young pup’s body due to the body’s inability to produce fever.

Questions one might ask, can or should the dam be bred again after a breeder experiences a CHV infected litter from the dam? if yes, would the dam’s next litter show signs of CHV too?  Can the stud dog  get infected?

Unfortunately, most veterinary information focusing on herpes in puppies and it is hard to find articles about management of herpes in adult dogs.  The percentage of CHV infected adult dog population is staggering. It is btw 30%-80% anywhere in the U.S (Wikipedia puts the number even higher, 40-93% in certain dog populations.)   Adult dogs rarely show signs of herpes as it tend to go dormant in the body, however, stress can trigger a flare ups. Therefore, careful  planning of a litter of a CHV infected bitch  is very important.

Stress management is key. How can a breeder avoid putting stress on a dog that is going to be bred?  What can be the stressors for a bitch?  Mary C. Wakeman D.V.M., summarize it in the following list:

  • hormonal events which temporarily impair the body’s ability to fight infection,
  • shipping , boarding, breeding and shipping again should the bitch travel to the stud dog,
  • possible concurrent bacterial vaginal or uterine disease,
  • lyme disease in certain part of the country when traveling there,
  • decreased thyroid level that is especially common in bitches five years or older,
  • certain vaccinations
  • other issues such as temperature stress.

The presence of stress triggered herpes can explain failed pregnancies, and unusually small litter sizes. In one test,  where strict pre-pregnancy work ups showed no infections around half way to whelping, the  presence of live fetuses have been established.   Later, serum samples were taken for herpes titer about two weeks apart.  Those who have been exposed to shows, kenneling, groomers, flying  and previously showed no signs of infections, the CHV test results suddenly have shown positive herpes titers, in about 80% of the bitches tested.  This outcome should be self explanatory why previously infected bitches especially should avoid stress before breeding and during pregnancy.

It is also important to know that CHV can appear in a form of a respiratory disease, that can easily be mistaken for kennel cough, can manifest as a conjunctivitis, cornea infection of the eye and sinusitis according to the Merck veterinary manual.  Dogs can be exposed to repeat infections by going to kennels, dog runs, training places where they can be exposed to higher or lower level of infective particles from the environment that has a relatively high presence of dogs, They can also flare up as their own dormant infection might resurface.

Breeders who cannot avoid these contacts, because they train other dogs, run  boarding kennels, go to shows and trials, still can reduce the probability of literary taking the disease back home through preventative measures such as regularly changing clothes before entering their own environment.  One can also reduce visitor’s access to the breeding kennel and establish higher sanitation measures for visitors (usually a high percentage of visitors already have dogs who might carry CHV on themselves from home.)

Ironically, pet dogs who do not or rarely visit dog shows, trials, kennels groomers etc are more susceptible because they have no regular low level contact with the virus as show and performance dogs do.

What about male dogs? They may get infected or not. The Belgian pharma company Merial who produces herpes vaccine Euricas 205 suggests that  vaccination temporarily stops the spread of the virus.  Testing at the time of breeding is pointless according to Mary C. Wakeman, especially if the dog is from the same environment as the bitch. Dogs from the same kennels,  will be in various phases of the infection. One thing to keep in mind, however, is that boarding kennels, groomers that primarily cater to pet dogs, contains a much higher level  of infected aerosol particles than breeding kennels in case the bitch has visited one of these sites outside of her kennel. Consequently sanitation is extremely important.  According to the Merck Veterinary manual, CHV is relatively unstable outside the host and sensitive to lipid solvents, ether and chloroform and in general to most disinfectants. With regular cleaning the transmission can be reduced.

Another useful advice is, not to leave the bitch in the dog’s environment at breeding, rather traveling back and forth by car  that most dogs are used to and staying in a hotel with the owner/handler. To further reduce stress and travel related exposure, the use of artificial insemination is also viable alternative.

There is no treatment (curing the disease) available for HCV. There is no vaccination available in the United States. Euricas Herpes 205 vaccination is available in Europe to “manage” the infection. There is an interesting scientific discussion how the vaccine had been developed step by step,  it is certainly not your ordinary non-fiction but I still found it fascinating what a serious work and details goes into developing medicine.                        “http://www.ema.europa.eu/docs/en_GB/document_library/EPAR_-_Scientific_Discussion/veterinary/000059/WC500066409.pdf

About puppies and CHV: the seriousness of the illness depend on the age of the dog that contracts it. In the prenatal stage of development the disease virtually starves the  fetus from nutrients. This is the reason why reabsorption, abortion or  stillbirth  can occur. Pups born with infection contracted in the prenatal period are usually severely damaged.

Puppies that get infected in the utero from vaginal secretion or the saliva or the nasal secretion of the dam during or after birth, often remain under weight, weak with damaged organs. These puppies often suffer from “fading puppy syndrome due to the inability to nurse.”  They are usually in discomfort with pain and  diarrhea. They produce eye and nasal discharge. internal hemorrhage is also a frequent syndrome of CHV pups. Since a puppy under three weeks of age cannot control his body temperature, he cannot produce fever and the virus simply thrives below 98F.  Once a CHV infected puppy reaches 3-4 weeks of age his chances of survival can increase dramatically.

Vaccinations, if it is available,  with proper timing will help the bitch to develop antibodies and reduce or temporarily prevent flare ups during mating and whelping induced stress.  When vaccination is not available like here in the US, strict preventative  measures can improve the puppies surviving rate.

Heat lamp and heating pad can help to elevate the puppies’ body temperature to reduce and prevent CHV replication in the body before three weeks of age until the pups can control their own body temperatures. While antibiotics are ineffective for controlling the virus, it can prevent and eliminate secondary bacterial infections.

Proper sanitation using household disinfectants can eliminate CHV shed by the dam to prevent further infections in the pups. Limiting outside visitors and the use of increased protective measures to introduce outside pollutions are also essential.

According to secondary sources, the pharmaceutical company Merial stated that “the virus, (CHV) does not come from bad kennels – it is already everywhere.”

Can we do something about it together?






Last Week Tonight

February 22, 2016

The FeHoVa dog show hall

The FeHoVa dog show hall

It’s been seven busy days in Budapest with the girls, Fruska and Agyag.  In this short time, I’ve managed to squeeze in a family reunion, a four day international dog show, some city hopping/shopping  and a three-day long  un amour de chien. By the way, Kaffogo Agyag justified her amorous attitude with a  quote from the  famous romantic  poet, Ashley Madison, a contemporary of Jane

Austen NOT…,  “Life is Short, Have an Affair…”

Ashley Madison

Ashley Madison, – stories of discretion

Jayne Austen

Jayne Austen – stories of indiscretion

Meeting my family is always a passionate affair...

Meeting my family is always a passionate affair…

Meeting my family is always a passionate gathering and my sister’s high-rise flat seemed a bit tight at times…

Starting on Thursday, February 18, we’ve participated the FeHoVa International  Dog Show at HUNGEXPO, the Budapest fairground. Five shows in four days. Dog shows are a different  kind of animal in Europe than in the U.S. One is better to cancel any other plans on a dog show day (the day really goes to the dogs.)  The organizers certainly give you all the time for your entry fees.

Agyag's result less one CACIB

Agyag’s result less one CACIB

I was glad that I entered Kaffogo Agyag to the shows.  I had a chance to get a partial inside look at the Hungarian Pumi field.  Partial, because, unfortunately, there has been a major schism between the Hungarian Pumi aficionados.  There are breeders and dog owners who are members of the official Magyar Pumi Klub (Hungarian Pumi Club) and than there are the “others” who refuses to recognize the official Club. If you thought that the partisanship in the U.S. Congress is serious than you ain’t see nothing.  It is a sad state of affairs, because there are good breeders and great minds on both sides.  Members of the opposition, with a few exception, do not enter to dog shows organized by or associated with the official Club and vice versa.  As a result, I had a chance to see approximately  70% of the Pumis of those who tend to participate at dog shows and a handful of foreign breeders.

The tram in front of Eifel's Budapest West Railway Terminal than...

The tram in front of Eifel’s Budapest West Railway Terminal than…

...and now (sort of...)

…and now

Since the 2013 Budapest World Dog Show, I’ve noticed some changes. Some Hungarian breeders/handlers started following the Nordic countries and have been experimenting with a more dramatic grooming than what we used to see earlier. Shorter hair and sculpting becoming a more frequent appearance. Interestingly, even some of the judges seemed to prefer the more sculpted Pumi look. In fact, I’ve heard some judges suggesting to some handlers whose dogs entered the ring with a  more natural coat that they should groom their dogs better. I am hesitant to go either way, however, one of the disadvantages that I can see is that much shorter cuts will reduce the importance of the quality of the Pumi coat because it simply won’t be possible to check it. Attitudes and customs have been changing.  One thing however, most handlers seems to be resistant to is, wearing former attire in the ring.

Gray has become the dominant Pumi color. Fawn, unless it is white or off white looking, appears to suffer some set backs.  I had a chance to talk to some of the foreign participants and it sounds that they’ve experienced similar tendencies in their countries too.

IMG_4527The Teddy Bear Syndrome:  I had an interesting discussion with some breeders and “off duty” judges about the increased number of Pumis on the smaller end with softer denser hair with more curvy angles than one would think of the Pumi after reading the breed standard. They are certainly cute and huggable, however, they are missing the size and stamina necessary for the breed’s original function, herding.  I’ve noticed this trend  the past few years in the northic countries and now in Hungary too. Some voices have also raised concerns about this issue in the U.S. too.

in front of the beautifully restored Central Market Hall

in front of the beautifully restored Central Market Hall

The update on Friday’s story is that I filed a formal complaint with the MEOESZ, the Hungarian Kennel Klub, about Judge Istvan Laszlo’s action of withholding the CACIB certificate from Agyag, because she was in “heat.”

photo from upstairs

the market indoor

According to FCI rules, the judge’s decision is final an cannot be reversed. However, if the MEOESZ rules in my favor, the judge can get sanctioned or disciplined.  I was  surprised how much support I’ve got from people. Surprisingly, there were also some supporting opinions from the opposition Pumi camp.

the cholesterol department

the cholesterol department

fruits and veggies

fruits, veggies and the famous paprika

Even though the dog show has consumed most of my time and energy,  I managed to have a nostalgia ride with my sister on the number 6 tram on the ring around the center of the City. The line is 8.3 km long has 19 stops in 29 minutes and it runs 24/7. The tran stops 225 times at each station during the day in both directions during the school year and 210 times when schools is out. The tran starts and ends on the Buda side of the city, however, rides the longest on the pest side.

Now that Agyag’s love affair and the dog show are over, I am ready to catch up with myself.  I am starting my spin class in the nearby gym tomorrow.

ready for my tomorrow spin class

ready for my tomorrow’s spin class

ready for my tomorrow's spin class

ready for my tomorrow’s spin class



WTF…?! (World Trade Fenter…)

February 19, 2016

The four-day long FeHoVa International Winter Show has begun at HUNGEXPO, the Budapest International Exposition site yesterday. The show is becoming a rather peculiar event.

There have been 25 Pumis from 13 kennels and 4 countries yesterday.  The judge was Mrs. Szabo, Katalin Ivanyi.  Kaffogo Agyag placed second in her class with Excellent 2 and Res. CACIB. Well done Agyag!!


Excellent 2 Res. CACIB good job Agyag!

Excellent 2 Res. CACIB good job Agyag!

Before I start to tell today’s bizarre experience in the ring with judge Mr. Istvan Laszlo, Let me congratulate to Nyirsegfia Tuske/Pityke/ BOB and Heczendorfer Jozsef, his owner/handler.

To make the story short, I’ve noticed that Mr. Istvan, the judge, has made some not exactly complimentary statements about a fawn (fako) male Pumi  to the dog’s owner in the ring earlier. He also asked the handler/owner of the same dog that who was the breeder of the dog.  When later we walked into the ring, he also asked me whether Agyag’s breeder was the same person as the fawn Pumi dog’s earlier. I told him that no, my bitch comes from a different kennel.

IMG_4469.JPG Excellent 1

Excellent 1 No CACIB… reason, Bitch in heat! I am pleased with the description but to deny a dog  of CACIB and to advance further because she is in heat, that is kind of…

Judge Istvan overall complimented Agyag and gave her first place in the Class,  “Excellent one, ” however, withheld the CACIB from Agyag by saying, “I cannot give her the CACIB because she is in heat….” (it is on her official written record)  Mr. Istvan Laszlo also did not allow Agyag to advance and enter the ring for the BOB title, even though, she won her class.

I admit, I was unpleasantly surprised. I looked at him, and nonchalantly told him that, how funny this was because three years ago this was not an issue when he, Mr. Istvan Laszlo selected Agyag to be the first Junior Raisits Cup winner in a much larger competition and Agyag, was in heat just like today. He stared at me with wide eyes and open mouth, (I think his tonsils have been removed..)and after a short pause he composed himself again and said, “yes, but she was close to finishing it back than…”

Nyirsegfia Tuske BOB today,

Nyirsegfia Tuske BOB today,

Since we did not have to show again, thanks to the judge, it gave me plenty of time to check the FCI rule book. I copied out the relevant sections for our situation. below is the direct copy of those sections.


…Bitches on heat are allowed to participate subject to the show regulations of the organisers.


…CACIB – Certificat d’Aptitude au Championnat International de Beauté de la FCI

The only dogs which can be taken into consideration for the CACIB are those which have been awarded “EXCELLENT 1st”. A CACIB can only be awarded if the dog in question has been assessed as being of superior quality. The CACIB is not automatically and compulsorily linked to the “EXCELLENT 1st”.


So yes, indeed, he has the right to withhold the CACIB, even though, the dog got Excellent 1 and won her class.  The rule book does not give examples of reasons why the judge might withheld the International Certificate.  The unfortunate part is that he also withheld the Res. CACIB from Annika Linden’s dog, Akkinaz Rams who got Excellent 2 and second place.  He won our class and also BOS yesterday.

To be clear, I am not questioning the fact that Mr. Istvan withheld the CACIB because he has the right to do that.  What I do not understand  is, his reasoning, that “the dog was in heat.” He did not say  and wrote that she was not a “superior quality” for the following reasons…(and listing the reasons.) He said that the bitch was in heat and that’s why she cannot get CACIB and go for the BOB.  The rule book clearly says that “…Bitches on heat are allowed to participate subject to the show regulations of the organizers “ based on the information at the time when I checked, there was no stipulations by the organizers that while bitches in heat can enter the conformation show, they cannot earn CACIB and advance for the BOB title (because they are in heat.) I am not sure that when a bitch is in heat what that has to do with her conformation. (I think it is safe to say  Mr.  Istvan Laszlo  would not vote for Hillary Clinton for the same reason… but that one is for another blog…)

This story might finally makes me one of  the “official” whiners and complainers of the Pumi breed, (now internationally too,) but you know what, someone has to stand up and ask the uncomfortable questions for the integrity of the “game” while the rest  of the group hide quietly in the bushes.  By the way, those in the bushes, watch out  for dog poops.

“Budapest Budapest Te Csodas…”

February 16, 2016

“Budapest Budapest You Wonderful…” The title is a popular Hungarian song, I think back from the 1960-70. For Hungarians it is sort of the equivalent of Sinatra’s “New York New York.” https://youtu.be/TIsXvH-e6bU  (it is heavily edited and appropriated sorry original content owners….)

I am so thrilled to be back again…


Catskill Pumis waiting to board at JFKIt is that crazy time of the year again when we travel to Europe to check out the royal and not so royal Pumi houses of Europe to make some holly alliances between the Pumis of the New World and some of the Ancient Regimes of the continent.


It is that crazy time of the year again when we travel to Europe to check out the royal and not so royal Pumi houses of Europe to make some holly alliances between the Pumis of the New World and Pumis of the  Ancient Regimes of Europe.

Catskill Pumi petting ZOO at JFK every one loves the Pumis

Catskill Pumi petting ZOO at JFK every one loves the Pumis

I’ll spend six weeks traveling in Hungary and a few other countries. The plan is to enter some dog shows, visit breeders, get some unofficial breeding and health history on the breed.  I will put  my light blue NATO helmet on and try to do my best to clean off the dirt that comes with all the information from the various sides…  and we also try to breed if all works as planned.

The Catskill Pumi Teddy Bear Collection - I WANT ONE!

The Catskill Pumi Teddy Bear Collection – I WANT ONE!

We had a very orderly departure that is usually a pretty  rear occurrence. Left on time from upstate, made it to the airport without incident, checked in dogs and luggages, I even get to check in an extra duffle bag without paying a penny. The early arrival to JFK gave us some extra quality time with the dogs. They could eliminate, hang out and get used to the new environment without any tension so when they were hauled away to load them on the plain, they did not care too much.

We let Mommy off leash for a pit stop

We let Mommy off leash for a pit stop…

The flight was uneventful. In Helsinki I changed plane to Budapest.  While boarding, the captain assured me that the dogs were  transferred to the second flight and so we went.  After the brutal cold spell of of Upstate NY (we had -40F windchill Friday night) I did not mind the unseasonable warm temperature at my arrival in Budapest.

Agyag and Fruska are checking in at Finnair

Agyag and Fruska are checking in at Finnair

We walked through customs like middle eastern migrants enter to Europe; no one checked my papers or really cared about me or the dogs.  I picked up my rental car and we were on our way to my sister’s house. The station wagon I rented is a blessing because I can fit both crates in the back so I can keep the car clean from muddy dog paws for six weeks. It was funny to see the dogs when we got out of the car and entered the lobby of the high-rise building where my sister lives. As we were waiting for the elevator, they kept looking and wondering why the sheep live in vertically stacked stalls and why they have so many shepherds around.  I needed to pull through the day without going to sleep until the evening so I can manage better the jetlag aka desynchronosis (a fancy word for you).

The Catskill Pumis are ready to board the subway

The Catskill Pumis are ready to enter the Budapest subway system

Today we took it easy. I bought a monthly public transportation pass so I do not have to drive in Budapest traffic unless it is necessary.  I also bought a gym membership to a fancy gym just a few blocks from my sister’s house because even though, i promised myself that I keep my relatively healthy diet while in Europe, I am afraid I will get tempted and breaking down within minutes after walking into one of those famous indoor food markets where they sell all those mouthwatering insanely delicious food creations.

My sister Zsuzsa with my Pumis

My sister Zsuzsa with my Pumis

The rest of the day we are off to the central shopping district on the Pest side of the City.  Lets see what the fancy boutiques of Budapest can offer comparing to Delhi’s “Tractor Supply” selection or Oneonta’s “Walmart” back home in New York. Do not tell this part of my trip to Laszlo…

Dogs and owners need to know a lot before entering a dog run you have to pass a "dog body language test" study material is available at the entrance. Turid Ruugas would be pretty proud

Dogs and owners need to know a lot before entering a dog run. Everyone has to pass a “dog body language test” Study material is available at the entrance. Welcome to Dog Run University… Turid Ruugas would be pretty proud


Rat King and Strawhenge…

December 5, 2015

En route to Florida, we stopped for a barn hunt trial at “Tailwaggin’ Events” in Robbinsville NJ.   The weather was glorious. Blue sky and radiating warm sunshine. Climate change at its best!

The rat King Installation by Katharina Fritsch

The rat King Installation by Katharina Fritsch


..and a real rat king from the collection of Naturkundliches Museum Mauritianum in Altenburg, Germany. (if you do not know about rat king, you might want to check it out)

Have you ever been at a barn hunt event? The course is built of straw bales where the dogs must navigate through tunnels, ramps, and other straw structures to find the rat in a tube somewhere under or between the straw bales. By looking at these straw bale structures that appeared so similar to the structures of Stonehenge, I thought, I just solved the approximately 5000 years old great mysteries of Stonehenge. Those New Stone Age (Neolithic) stoners must have played barn hunt. Rats should have been abundant and therefore, good farm dogs, had to be in great demand…

Stonehenge, the real stuff...

Stonehenge, the real stuff…

Anyway, the place was packed with people and tons of dogs.  It always makes me wonder what makes dogs so special in our lives that we create crazy events and form organizations to entertain these four legged beasts… Four Pumis entered out of 12 (!) present! With such a rate, the unique Pumi cuteness fast will turn into everyday delight.

Strawhenge the real stuff...

Strawhenge, the real stuff…

There were 43 entries in novice class and two of the two Pumis have stolen the show. My Kaffogo Agyag has won second place. It has been the happiest second place I can think of, because, the winner was Catskill CAVU from our B-litter (owner Sandy Mainardi).  CAVU recently recovered from a serious knee surgery after an unfortunate accident during agility training.  No wonder, I was so happy that she beat Agyag. It was nice to see him happy and healthy again.  Marika Foreman has also entered her two Catskill Pumis, Csibesz and Bikfic.  This event was their barn hunt debut.  Both dogs  were very excited  and Csibesz passed his rat instinct test.

the villain of the barn hunt - the rat...

the villain of the barn hunt – the rat…

Barn hunt is in great demand... handlers' meeting

Barn hunt is in great demand… handlers’ meeting

The rest of the Pumis were cheering from the sideline.  People could not stop smiling by looking at the cutest and biggest herd of Pumis in Robbinsville today.

The Hero and star of the story, Kaffogo Agyag...

The Hero and star of the story, Kaffogo Agyag…

There was even a rat bar... The rat wrangler recommendation was, Rattus Norwegicus on the rocks...

There was even a rat bar… The rat wrangler recommendation was, Rattus Norwegicus on the rocks…

After the event, we are back on the road today.  We plan to spend the night in Virginia and tomorrow  to complete the last leg of the annual Eukanuba pilgrimage to Orlando Florida.

No one can resist barn hunt...so why don't YOU try it next time...?

No one can resist barn hunt…so why don’t YOU try it next time…?

She, Who Gets Up Early Finds Gold…

June 9, 2015

a cute well behaving farm Pumi in the cwnter of Milan, Italy from upstate NY. She licks her mouth after chasing the local pigeons away and eating their food...

a cute well behaving farm Pumi in the cwnter of Milan, Italy from upstate NY. She licks her mouth after chasing the local pigeons away and eating their food…

The title of my entry is a Hungarian proverb.  Even though, I hate to get up early and in fact, I believe in long cozy beauty sleeps, I truly live by the meaning of this proverb…

our balcony. Anka loves to watch people walking by below us. It is a treat for a farm dog who most of the time sees only the mailman on the farm back home.

our balcony. Anka loves to watch people walking by below us. It is a treat for a farm dog who most of the time sees only the mailman on the farm back home.

It is hard to write about Italy, anything new or different. It is one of the favorite tourist destinations of many. History, arts, architecture food and wine have been written and rewritten about from various angles by hundreds of gifted writers, historians and food critics .  So what else new can I add and write about that does not make one fall on his face because of repetition and boredom.  I do not know. I’ll be here for eight days and try fatefully report you my Pumi girl, Catskill Apacatancos Anka and my Italian (Milanese)

in the wine store museum

Anka hit the floor in the Enoteca Ronchi wine store/museum.  Wondering what she had upstairs  while I was tasting wine with Luise Ronchi in the basement.

adventures. Who knows, it might turn out to be different that you used to read about Italy.

Ciao Italia!  So we finally got here…! New place and new adventures with one of my great dogs, Anka.  I love to travel, I love to meet new people and immerse myself in the respective local cultures, the  history of the people and the places I visit.

original Chagall wine label. When viticulture gets high(er) brow...

original Chagall wine label. When viticulture gets high(er) brow…

I prefer to explore new places step by step. I never mean to be pushy. ( I call it friendly…)  When I arrived to Milan, it was different.  I skipped the introduction and found myself in the middle of Milanese life.  After all, I have only eight days to spend here.

Luise Ronchi

Luise Ronchi

My strategy is always to establish my perimeters. So first thing, I walked into a wine store/museum that happened to be “Enoteca Ronchi,” the wine sanctuary  of Milan’s oldest five-generation wine merchants, the Ronchis. Being a friendly girl, I started chatting with the person in attendance who turned out to be Luise Ronchi, the current proprietor.  I got a tour of the store, the cellar and was offered some delicate tasting.  Luise has also introduced me to a few wine bar owners in the area who invited me to their establishments for the next few days to come.  What a way to overcome jet lag, start a trip abroad and save on your wine budget…

the courtyard of the building where I rent my flat

the courtyard of the building where I rent my flat in Milan. It reminds my so much the building where we lived in the heart of Budapest with Laszlo before leaving Hungary.

Photo Jun 09, 6 19 22 PM

Luise Ronchi’s hand written notes for my Milanese wine history education

Oh, I almost forgot. Tomorrow, I am invited to Loise Ronchi’s home to further explore Italian viticulture, sharp at 11 AM.

Now back to my beauty sleep.  I’ll write about Italy later…

detail of my flat.  It is cozy and close to everything.

detail of my flat. It is cozy and close to everything.


hmmm... why would anyone install the bowl to chill wine next to the toilette... well, it is a small apartment.

hmmm… why would anyone install the bowl to chill wine next to the toilette… well, it is a small apartment…lol


Seven Pumis In Seven Days…

May 30, 2015

Hello World, We Are Here

Hello World, We Are Here

Hello World, We Are Here…  We were happy to land on Planet Pumi during Memorial Day weekend, make it sure that everyone will remember us.

FYI, we are more than color coded cute monkeys, we are Pumis with real names… if you think you have speech impediment after reading our names, either ignore it or set up an appointment with your speech pathologist.

So here we go!

Hi, my name is Csucsai Csinszka or Csinszka from Ciucea. I am one of the pups from the Catskill Pumi C-litter.  I will be the narrator of our first seven days today.

Sneaky little guys

Sneaky little guys

My name comes from the romantic story (blah blah blah…) that Csinszka was the wife of one of the greatest Hungarian poets, Endre Ady. Unfortunately, he died of syphilis just before penicillin was available in 1919…  (Sorry, I am a pup and sometimes not sure about appropriate comments or unnecessary extra information…) Anyway, since I started it, let me finish it… As a new born pup, my take away of this story is, that greatness might shields one from the consequences of getting in  to trouble, however, not necessarily from contracting trouble…The wife, Csinszka was from a small town in Transylvania, Ciucea or Csucsai, that is between Oradea where our mistress, Ildiko was born and Cluj Napoca where Ildiko attended her undergraduate studies, so she was riding through Ciucea a lot.

The second girl’s name is “Csendes Csobanka” that translates as “Quiet Shepherdess.” I think this name is self explanatory. We were born into a herding kennel, and while anecdotes say that Pumis must bark when herd, our elder kennel team mates have proven that a good herding dog can work in silence.

“Cseresznyes Cio-Cio-San” is the third girl, that stands for “Cio-Cio-San with Cherries.” This name is a testament that we are from an artsy fartsy family, and supposedly  when Laszlo was growing up, his family had permanent annual ticket to the Budapest Opera House… (I hope you  got the Cherry connection…)

“Cserfes Csacsogo,” or Gossipy Chatterbox” is the fourth girl’s name. I do not want to be a party pooper, so I cannot identify the person she is named after… Pumis are certainly known about their chattery personality and gossip is also an important social tool  getting to know your allies and enemies…

And  here come the boys…

AKC's Most Wanted

AKC’s Most Wanted


“Cifra Csaszar” or “Adorned Emperor.” A name that jumps out from the gilded history of the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy, folk fables, national operas, Francophile poets and the rest.

“Csipos Csuzli” or “Pinching Slingshot” is the perfect name for the perfect underdog, a peasant underdog I might add, recalling a biblical hero from the Old Testament.

Finally the last of us is “Csatakos Csoma.”  His name can be translated as “Soaked or Muddy Csoma.” Either way, when you’ll see him, you know that he is just an adorable lovely dirty Pumi.

We’ve had a busy loud and camera flashy first seven days, so I think I am happy that I cannot hear and see for a few more days, otherwise, I would have a serious headache.  We were photographed and showed around the world, I felt like a Kardashian Pumi or one of “AKC’s Seven Most Wanted…”

We also had a visit at the vet office that has become a subject of an international crisis, “dewclaw or not to dewclaw…” However, thanks to the twenty four-hour news cycle, FIFA took the center stage right after us.

dewclaw or not dewclaw an international Pumi crisis

dewclaw or not dewclaw an international Pumi crisis

Lately, we are subjected to some weird experiment, created by a person named Dr.Bataglia.  Honestly, it is quite uncomfortable.  We have to hang upside down, resting on cold surface, they push Q-tips between our paws and other weird stuff. It is supposedly  good for us.  The only thing I am concerned about is that a few decades from now some revisionist historian might come up with the idea that we were part of some weird Eugenist exercise, the “Post-Letterman Stupid Pet Tricks”. 

So what will we become? I do not know. Words go around in the whelping box that they will send us to the four corners of the world, so I guess, we will be missionaries. Wait a second…, can we be Mormon Pumis?

From Planet Mars to Planet Pumi in 62 days...

From Planet Mars to Planet Pumi in 62 days…


Yes, She is Ready to be a Mom…

May 15, 2015

Did Snow White eat the seven dwarves...? we've found six... Agyag's belly on the x-ray image

Did Snow White eat the seven dwarves…? we’ve found six… Agyag’s belly on the x-ray image

Day 54 from the first breeding.  We went to x-ray Agyag’s belly to find out how many pups we can expect.  The image has shown six heads, but it can be more pups, because these images are not precise. Well, I guess, we will find out the exact numbers in less than a week.

"The Bagpipe Band"  with the six baor more(?) band members inside the bag. It reminds me  "The Turk," the hoax chess playing machine that actually did hide a chess master inside the machine.

“The Bagpipe Band” with the six or more(?) band members hiding inside the “bag.” It reminds me “The Turk,” the hoax chess playing machine from the late 1800’s that actually did hide a chess master inside the machine.






"The Turk, " Wolfgang of Kempelen fake chess machine with a chess master hidden inside...

“The Turk, ” Wolfgang von Kempelen’s fake chess machine with a chess master hidden inside…

http://youtu.be/8oO2v-6TZkM<—-Click on link

After a few days of feeding frenzy, she seems to loss her appetite again. I am back to my canine culinary juggle to please her pregnant palate.   Otherwise she is in a good spirit. I have to keep her on leash because she is ready to herd when we are outside during the day and she wants to make a nest outside after dark.  Before I leashed her, she really scared me the other night when she started squeezing herself into a culvert pipe.

I looked up the the antonym of "bareback" on the internet.  For my surprise, most entries brought up this photo.  I guess the news is out...

I looked up the the antonym of “bareback” on the internet. For my surprise, most entries brought up this photo. I guess the news is out…


We have less than a week to go…

The Burdens of Pregnancy

May 4, 2015

Nibbling on cat foot. Catskill Anka waiting for some kibbles to drop in the background...

Nibbling on cat foot. Catskill Anka waiting for some kibbles to drop in the background…

Less than three weeks to go. Agyag is in a good shape and excellent spirit most of the time, however, when it comes to food she becomes so capricious.  One day she doesn’t eat at all, then the next day she eats a few bits here and there, and when it is the least expected, she gables in  of beef liver.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UjGSStCXo_Y <—–Click on link

I buy a wide variety of food for her trying to please her. Of course the kibbles, and canned food for ideal nutritional balance ( she cares the least about these).  I bought her chicken. It scares me because of the raging chicken flu in the midwest. Chicken is suspiciously cheap these days.  I dehydrate the meat. I also try raw gizzards and chicken liver. I got beef liver, fish, of course we give our lamb and goat meat. Sometimes she craves for lamb kidneys and raw tongue. I also caught her several times crunching on dry cat food kibbles. The other day we also located  green tripes.

In short, she drives me nuts.

part of the food selection

part of the food selection



The Preparations Begin

May 2, 2015

Agyag's belly looks like an intercome call button panel. You press anipple and can talk to one of the pups.

Agyag’s belly looks like an intercome call button panel. You press anipple and can talk to one of the pups.

We are lining up for landing.  Kaffogo Agyag has approximately three more weeks to go until whelping. Her belly is swelling, and her nipples are protruding.  She just rolled over and comfortably stayed on her back while I was shaving her tummy.  What a girl.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fXSwE18fTWo  <—-Click here…

I am getting so excited.

Quiet please, I am taking a large pizza order

Quiet please, I am taking a large pizza order