Tuesday, 7 January 2003

January 7, 2003

Good morning! Phew, what a busy few days – and things only look to get busier! 

Sunday Mark spent the day on the band saw. He got lots done and all the meat I need for the trip north is now ready. Once I leave, he will still have to do another day or so of cutting to get everything ready for Iditarod. I’ve included some pictures below of ‘Band Saw Day’. 

Click on the images to view larger versions.  I have purposely left the originals large, so that details will be more easily visible for those who car to view them.

Mark slices salmon into snacks for the dogs. 

TakeOut, the cat keeps a close eye on the proceedings.

600 lbs. of tripe waiting to be cut into meal sizes. For those of you that don't know what tripe is - it is the stomach lining of cows. Aren't you glad you wondered??? It is certainly alittle stinky!

TakeOut tries to figure out a way to make a meal out of the pile! Actually, TakeOut is very spoiled and refuses to eat meat scrapes. It's either commercial cat food, freshly killed squirrel or bird, or nothing for this boy!

Working the blocks down to meal size. Each meal block is about 8 lbs - that will be one feeding for the 'A' string. 

Preparing the meat for a race.

The blocks are sliced into these thin slices for racing, as they will thaw very quickly when hot water is poured on them. These meals will be used for the shorter races I'm planning on doing in Alaska in January and February. 
While he was busy in the garage, I took a team out. Still doing shorter runs to help Draco get back with the ‘program’. He continues to look good. He has his ‘final exam’ today – a 30 mile run. If he is sound tomorrow he will go to Alaska with me. 

Loki is now my ongoing concern. He is in great spirits and working great, but his blood work did show a slightly high white blood count when we did it on the 23rd. A follow up yesterday showed an even higher count. He is going in this morning for more testing. There is obviously some sort of infection in him; we just have to find it. First test will be getting a urine sample – not tough to do with Lok – he pees on everything he can! 

I’m not really that concerned about this, obviously if it was a serious infection, we would see signs in his overall attitude and health – but it is definitely something we want to get cleared up. 

Breezy (multi BIS Ch. Chuchinka’s Dance in the Wind SDX) was in the vet yesterday too. She is one of my retirees and has been having some troubles of late. X-rays on the 23rd made the vet want a closer look, so yesterday they opened her up and took some intestine and digestive tract biopsies. They are thinking Inflammatory Bowel Disease or something similar. That is actually good news, as it is a manageable condition. I also had her spayed while they had her on the operating table. She is resting comfortably in the house. 

For those of you that are not on the NorthWapiti News mailing list, we announced a new ‘Lead Dog’ Sponsor last week - Stuffed Animal House of Langley, B.C.. You can see some of their very neat stuffed huskies (and other critters) at www.stuffedanimalhouse.com . We are very pleased to have them join our ‘team’!!! 

Denise Linley tells me that the 2003 limited edition print is now heading off to the printers. The print is titled “24’d and Ready” and depicts my team and I getting ready to leave the McGrath checkpoint after our 24-hour layover in the 2001 Iditarod. I will get a copy of it up on the site as soon as I can and mailings will happen as soon as I get home from Alaska at the end of March. My apologies to all for the delay on this this year. 

That’s all for today!

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