October 8th 2013 8:02 pm
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I look at my dear companion of the past 13 years and am simply amazed at how the time has flown, memories recorded and emotions experienced through all these days & nights.
I try not to notice or show her I see when she misses her step and has a hiccup in her normally fluid & graceful gait, the more frequent accidents or the raspy bark that has replace the crisp ones all these years because once in awhile I swear she looks at me to see if I've notice or my reaction because she is a proud and lively girl, always has been.
I have also been reaffirmed again recently the universal power of the pet companion. Being the rebellious daughter/only child and out of touch with my brave mother who has off and on battled cancer for years, we are mending together.
My mother recently lost her beloved cat whom she got during the first diagnosis 14+ years ago and has helped her through not just this battle but the empty loneliness of a damaged relationship with her child.
I too came across Lena Malik in a similar time with the need for unconditional love, acceptance and connection through my own trials. She has been my family when I felt like had had none (through my own decisions/mistakes/personal sabbaticals).
My mother's losing her cat a few months ago affected her health, appetite, sleep & spirit and I honestly knew her devastation through it all. Her cat gave her comfort and love all the time I was absent and gave her the strength to keep hoping every new day was a possibility and deal with the numerous treatments necessary.
I shared with her and my father that honestly I think I will need therapy when Lena needs to leave me and she totally understood just how meaningful this one simple furred living soul means to me and it was another step shared and treasured.
My Lena has had her missteps and minor health issues but she is truly still thriving and I cherish every day...no actually every- single- moment. I embrace her new oddities and habits, freshly discovered fears and eccentrics actions because we both know I am there with her every step of the way.
How can anyone discard a living being that just wants to belong, be a part of a family or simply be recognized? Politics, economy, resentment or anger should never dictate the way humans treat so called lesser beings because they are not distracted by what we have been influenced by, they simply want to exist, be loved & cherished....belong and at the root of it all that is what we humans want and need yet sometimes have to be reminded of.
My pup has given me so many life lessons and all I have ever wanted and tried to be is her worthy companion.
I salute her today amongst every day yet today reminds me that my little special gift was born today, 13 years ago....just for me and for the bond we have. Thank you Lena Malik -beebin pie, princess of the pines, you have truly enriched my life and made me kinder, more patient and showered smiles.
August 9th 2012 7:18 pm
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Dogster has never been far from my mind even though we hardly pass through anymore. I know many others have moved on to other social medias but Lena Malik and I have moved on to simplifying our lives being "old school girls" lol, yes!!!, letter writing, postcards, phone calls & emails if we can't meet face to face, pup nose to nose. Still Dogster enabled me to find the kindred of souls who empathized, sympathized...love their pups with an unabashed appreciation and would leap to help those who needed a helping hand or a cause that needed a brave & selfless/tireless soul to champion.
I finally felt at ease for knowing all my pup's mannerisms, quirks & habits were not all that strange and that we could all think our very own pups was the best/coolest pup on the planet w/out getting into to hairy debates...yes we all love out pups and share in the joy & fascination they bring.
I have been spending some time on a wonderful blog called "Life with Dogs" and before it went viral the article of the man and his 19 yr. old pup in Lake Superior surfaced. It brought forth all the angst, trepidation and some sort of denial I have with Lena Malik entering her final chapters and I just had to write a bit to express my anxiousness.
I had no idea anyone was listening anymore and to read the responses has been overwhelming.
Sweet, familiar faces leaving a paw print and letting us know we are in their thoughts & hearts has really impacted me/us.
Flicka: you live up to your breed...your perseverance and determination to let us ALWAYS know you care and love us, the loyal friend 24/7 thank you!
Margo, let's celebrate being the grand dames together and count our blessings for being able to share more memories w/ our humans than most!
Rain/KJ & Teresa: S. is still volunteering for wolf orgs. and she slaps her hand that we're neighbors and yet have never crossed the state border to meet, your open range home is pup heaven and we wish all pups had that slice of freedom!
Dakota Rose: I am so glad you overcame your illness, it seems like yesterday when you had to deal w/ Gnarly Marley and I viewed momentous wedding pics!
BREE: aww Bree & Zeke my not so little warrior pup & Queen, we still have BLUE's pic/magnet on our fridge and people still ask, we have been through so much together and recognized the power of the paw because of your pack!
Nadya Snow White: folks say I am a looker but secretly humom always thought you were the husky covergirl and yet w/ your delightful personality you didn't take it too seriously which makes you even more beautiful. I am sorry we were not here for you when Sasha Belle passed, I know shes eagle eying every move you make now and keeping watch, hugs beautiful girl!
Robin Hood: you have still waltzed through our page and let us know we're in your thoughts for years, thank you for this..your name & chivalrous heart suits you well!
Jambalaya: I have to address you even know I love your entire pack to bits, your a mini me, or at least a younger version. We are so proud and amazed by all your humom has accomplished and even though we don't keep in touch as much now, to know a dear friend continues to press forward with important causes gives us added strength to continue in our little corner of the world!
Suika: ahh girlfriend we never made it to DQ but I know you are using your charm to get out of trouble like I am trying here, you were always the calm sensible one but but gorgeous face probably gave you some leave;) !
Bodie: my unrequited caunck sweetheart & friend, I am very sorry that my humom wasn't their for yours to lean on, you sweet boy, your departure must of brought such sorrow for your humans. I do believe you will be one of the first faces to greet me & show me the way when I cross and I am grateful we were able to cross paths here, extra hugs for your humom from mine ♥
Montana: &Bailey & pack, not so fearful of what's on the other side to know good friends are there to greet me. Reading what your humom wrote has us in tears, I am sorry I was not there for your family and the pain of your passing. You perfected the husky smile you beautiful boy, we'll meet one day and I guess Husky Heaven really does exist!
Jessie: howllo! thank you for the sweet pup mail, humom never made it to New Zealand but she might be not too far from there in the future, everything on hold since I am still & always her top priority. I hope you are enjoying life in your prime beautiful girl, run...like I used to ;P !
To those who I don't know that well but were kind enough to leave a bark, thank you, I appreciate it and realize that you must share the special connection w/ your pup/pups to let me know you understand the emotions which made me write them.
Lena Malik had picked up some really odd habits the past couple years but this post is long enough for now.
I'm going to post a couple recent pics, the muzzle & eyes are much whiter but she still has those perky ears and stare...thinking about that sweet 19 yr. old pup relaxing in Lake Superior (whose not that far away from us)...at almost 12, I', almost a spring chicken, might have to write him a fan paw mail.
Thank you, thank you for dropping us a line and having us in your hearts, it means the world coming from this collective of people who have shown me in the past their love of not just their own pups & family but trying to make things right for all....we've been putting up a real good fight, let's keep marching forward!
Love, Sasha & Lenal Malik♥♥♥
August 3rd 2012 3:47 pm
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Lena Malik is almost 12,
This extremely hot & humid summer in the Midwest has us relishing the AC and enjoying the few frequent opportunities outdoors as much as possible.
I rub/massage down my little trooper's legs every day (w/ an occasional children's aspirin to ease the discomfort) and at times I have to help her up on her favorite deck chair or on my high log bed for some quality snuggle time. Less control of her bladder and a few minor accidents ensue, her pride always in the forefront which makes me act like it's no big deal and simply move along.
All her friends from puppy classes have crossed the Rainbow Bridge, given most of them were large breed dogs but still some of our regular walks have a tinge of sadness of empty yards & gardens which she still insists on marking to let them know she was there and other yards where we pause and she waits not actually correlating that a pup pal is going to bound out the door or at least let out a social bark.
Yes indeed my Lena is grand dame of the neighborhood and sometimes she has a bounce to her step or the puppy like gait which in turn has strangers ask how old my "pup" is.
I know we are in her golden years, I know I have yet to experience what my friends of had to of a dear pup passing and still cannot fathom.
For now we still charge forward, greet each day with enthusiasm and I am still constantly delighted and amazed by my companion. She is still living the high life and reminding me the value of companion pets, their loyalty & love and we should never undermine the lessons they teach us of if we take the time to open our eyes & hearts and appreciate each and every moment.
December 22nd 2009 6:48 pm
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The "old lady" as I have recently nicknamed her is getting up there in years. Sure Lena Malik is agile, full of life and as trusting & appreciative of life and experiences as she was in her youth to the point people still ask "how old is your pup"?
They don't know she's started to have more accidents or adopted strange new habits like barking and pushing her food bowl around or whipping around to chase a ghost squirrel or rabbit. The slight misstep or aching feet and bones after a long hike. I start to honestly freak out...getting somber at what the supposed "golden years" hold, all the people I have tried to support through a loss and darkest times. I don't do morbid well but I prepare because of slight nuances I see in my beloved pup and reality catching up with us.
What I have learned through my dog and relations with others who have strong & cherished bonds with their pets is, their lives are simplified which in turn reminds us the basic golden rules to attain.
To wake up each day appreciative of living and with an open heart to possible adventures, experiences and delights. To be as loyal as you can be to those you hold dear and most importantly to be grateful, kind and trusting in the possibilities no matter what you have been through.
We are a good pack of two...Lena Malik & I
We wish everyone the warmest hugs and comfort this holiday season no matter how high or low the emotions flow.
We relish the times we have and yet my heart aches for those friends we lost and their humans who bear an empty & aching place in their hearts.
The best all of us can do is keep pressing forward with what time & resources we have to ensure our pets and their peers are protected, honored & recognized. That means continuations of cross postings, petitions, donations of time & money because we are not only their voice but those who are not lucky enough to have a human or family to look to or call home.
Everyone at dogster & catster obviously has much more so let's try to take a step beyond.
Blessed wished & happy holidays from Lena Malik & Sasha
November 12th 2009 6:48 pm
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Tribute to all my friends who have truly left their mark.
So many paws have veered off on another path/journey here at dogster and at home.
Glancing sideways, expecting to see their familiar faces and easy banter that comes with friendships grown over time, all the milestones...celebrations, holidays and even the dark hours when we would pick each other up and start again.
We with paws know it's just a matter of time til we converge and continue where we left off, with each other and of course our humans but they sometimes ignore or try to forget their journeys are longer and more intricate than ours even though deep in their heart they know we wait patiently beyond.
The reason why we exist is to provide companionship and an unconditional loyalty, to try to be daily reminders to humans that if you simplify your life and realize what is important, you have much more time & heart to attend to really appreciating the opportunity to LIVE and not just breathe....we often teach give them lessons or reminders how to treat other humans no less.
We lost our friends here in Minnesota, Bailey & Sarge recently to cancer the past few months and our mind and thoughts are here with harleyboy & Campeche and their families.
Poking my nose around I see many more who have crossed recently like Juneau, Jazz and Smiley, and even through time the edge hasn't softened in missing my friends QUANNAH and ELVIS and I just found out my friend Molly sought out the bridge as well...
I worry about mom 'cause I find her mind wander over there, to rainbow bridge since I guess I can officially be classified as an old lady or at least a few husky toes into senior citizenship. She scrutinizes over the added white hairs to my muzzle which you can hardly notice if you don't know me that well and because of my coloring. I like to throw a wrench into her thoughts & notions by still being as spirited in gait to the point people still ask her how old of a "pup" am I, when she tells them, their voices drop an octave and the Ohs" come out as the reminder of time and mortality cannot be ignored.
As I lay here in good health and give her the same loyalty and joy I have provided these past nine years, in the emotional nest of comfort & support, her heart goes out to my friends and most of all their humans, she can relate to.
(message from humom Sasha)
We invest in relationships, whether human or pets to take that leap of faith that our rewards will far surpass the sacrifices, sorrows and pain that feeling so deeply can bring.
People who don't have pets, especially dogs like to think or label us as crazy or eccentric at times but I take pity on them, those who have never experienced the joy of a beloved pet or being as simply, truly loved & adored as in the eyes of our pups here and now, beyond, forever.
We write this for all of you and know someday actually the message will ring the same for us. Know that there are others out there that have bearded similar grief, have experienced or are experiencing the bittersweet joy of walking down memory lane and that would do it all again to have known you and call you family.
November 10th 2009 7:18 pm
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Dogster is a highway, full of pups coming & going, an endless parade of dogs & humans with so little time to choose who you meet & get to know.
Some of us gather by region or breed or by other common interests. Many meet by chance and from those a few make a lasting impressions and perhaps a friendship or two.
harleyboy was truly an original...his looks made many of us fawn and coo because truly he was a looker, combined with the charms of his spokesman human, he left a trail or curious, interested and at times broken hearts because being social & extremely charming was natural to him.
But for a stingy gal like me, more is needed to impress and what really welcomed my heart was his love & zest for life...the endless curiosity and joy he found in LIVING. So many of us dogs are lucky to have a home and human guardian to care for us but there's a few who really excel at showing what a truly contented dog can share.
I cannot bring myself to look at harleydog's videos right now, the same ones that brought me such joy & laughter are remembrances of a one in a million special pup and it's hard to glance at that missed spirit.
harleydog for me was synonymous with dogster along with a handful of others and one of the pillars/cornerstones & fine ambassador of this site is now gone.
The hardest part to deal with is that harleydog exemplified life, joy & spirit. With him gone I feel dust in my lungs & breath, the continuous wave of energy is not complete down here, he was the one who tried to make you smile or laugh when you were crying inside so where do I turn to now?
All I know is somewhere up there at the Rainbow Bridge, it just got a whole light brighter...harleydog is lighting it up, I know it to my bones & husky paws. My friend sure knew how to live & liven up wherever he went and I am certain he is bringing a whole new ray of sunshine & energy beyond us.
The tears flood the vision of the keyboard and it's hard to type, but thank you friend for being such a light, a gift to those who crossed your path, til we meet again, love LM.
June 7th 2009 8:26 pm
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I cannot rest tonight without adding a small tribute entry for one of the grandest wolves which my humom was lucky enough to meet.
Her name was Lakota and she was the omega of the original ambassador wolf pack at the IWC/International Wolf Center in Ely MN founded by "Dr. Wolf" himself David Mech.
She was the reason humom enlisted in volunteering for IWC and for wolf orgs across the country. The reason she got more steadily involved in wildlife conservation, rescue and naturally in animal rescue.
In human society Lakota would of ruled...she was not only gorgeous & photogenic, she was a larger wolf, largest in her litter but in wolf society, larger doesn't always equate to alpha status and she never had the attitude nor the drive/will to achieve it. She witnessed a younger , beta birth sister die at a young age and she also outlived her brother the alpha male Lucas and MacKenzie the alpha female.
I have a youtube dedication clip on my page, take the time to view and witness the wonder of Lakota... there is a shot that breaks my heart of Lakota on the defensive and frenzied surrounded by four other wolves...much of her life was this yet she played a key part in the dichotomy of the pack, even when you least expected...when a wolf was brave enough to challenge authority & alpha and the wrestling became dark, Lakota would scoot in and break the ice and become the sole victim of torment, no contest when the omega was around but most other lowly wolf members would try to find a safe corner or lick the alpha's face in submission, Lakota would break up scuffles and sacrifice herself to ensure peace in her pack.
A most amazing wolf, a beautiful creature whom humom would of loved nothing more than to coddle and to love but we recognize and respect what is wild.
I am proud to share lineage with such an amazing creature and a noble being.
Rest in peace and in knowing your spirit truly lives on in us runts,underdogs & omegas.
June 7th 2009 7:10 pm
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So much to share I don't know where to begin so I think it's best to start at the present, and I mean very present.
Humom came home a few hours ago and greeted me with funny smells...as in funny OTHER dog smells. I leaped around and did the husky butt wiggle, acting like I hadn't seen her in a million years and yet I smelled the weirdness. BUT as a mature 8 yr. old, confident pup I got over it (actually I recognized the smells, my girlfriends down the block Mischa, a husky lab mix & Ellie a white shepherd husky mix, both we're trying to enlist onto dogster, so if you gals are visiting my page, get on it!) Both my galfriends are rescues like me and I love how we are all living the high life now and ruling the neighborhood...yes we do gossip about the strange boy pups strutting on our territory but we are definitely a handful as a collection (a blonde, a strawberry blonde & a redhead BOL!) but none would ever hold a candle to my *Bandit*, seriously, how many male pups appreciate morning glories yet possess a stare & glare a wolf would pause at ?!!!, and a poet's heart...sigh.
Anyways, I currently have such challenging duties to attend to such as being chili taster last night and helping humom maintain the garden and greeting friends and neighbors, picking out treats and toys at the store for rescue groups and hauling firewood & equipment when we are out of town. but humom mentioned dogster and I woofed it's about fricking time! I miss my friends, I miss the camaraderie and most importantly I know there is always work to be done and never enough hands and paws to meet the requests & demands.
Now the tricky thing about dogster is love, friendship,all the paths offered and tempting, time consuming little threads, perks and whatnot and so little time. Last night we spent over 4 hours simply saying howllo and trying to catch up a little. It hurt to only be able to glimpse a friend's page for a couple moments, perhaps leaving a message or a gift because everyone has so much going on in their lives and some are major that racked us emotionally, others who had such wondrous reasons to celebrate...all that left us feeling guilty and saddened not to have witnessed or be there in the times of greatest joys and deepest sorrows.
For this I want to apologize friends because I do know how much it means to have friends who truly are compassionate and will be there to be your strength when you need it and also are sincerely happy and joyful in celebrations.
So for now I will leave you with a little something to think on,
we will pass through, come and go in so many various degrees and places but our sole duty and purpose as pups is to be there as companions and the unconditional love & loyalty humans need and have not managed to generally possess like us. We are there at first dawn and in the darkest times of unsettled rest and moments for our humans, through all of it. We were also the reason they found their way to dogster, the reason why they stay or come back after absences...through it all we are always there and it's the humans that may need to take a step back or tend to other things but friends, I have always been here, my spirit, my concern & love but I know you understand this too and are constantly taking care of your humans as well and that makes me sleep well at night. Still it's good to be back.
November 17th 2008 9:23 pm
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We lost my wild furkin Simon/Simone to a hawk 6 weeks ago but that tragic tale is for another time.
My squirrel friend (too premature to designate it's sex, thus the duel names) taught both my humom and I many lessons in it's brief life and on this morning it may have saved one of it's kind it's owns precious little life.
Humom has had an ongoing turf war with the squirrels and her garden the past 8 years, heated enough for her to acquire a slingshot (she has wicked aim but only goes for the thickest part of the body as a reminder we have territory we're willing to defend). Finally this year she forewent the numerous tomato and other vegetable plants...gardening should be a pleasure, not a basis of so much stress,strife and combat. We got very little sympathy from friends when Simon/Simone came into our lives after years of complaint but it was the sole littler mate of "little squirrel boy" that mom tried to save and we mentioned in a previous diary entry, this squirrel I am confident in proclaiming was one in a million and will never be forgotten and forever missed.
I have been patiently waiting for winter, yes at times the Minnesota cool air plays tricks on us all but isolated snowflakes here and there makes me grumble since snow is one of my favorite things in life and the true sign ushering in winter. So the first thing I liked to do after the morning potty duty walk is to be let outside on the back deck which I have taken over, especially a very famous chaise lounge that Lindsey Lohan sat on in the movie "A Prairie Home Companion". My poppa worked on the movie and purchased it from the set for my humom but once I lounged on the chaise, it became mine. Every morning I jump up on the chaise and circle 5 or 6 times and curl up into the expected husky ball and enjoy the cool mornings. This morning the temp was about 20 degrees but my winter coat has been in place for a few weeks and I set about dreaming of snow, the last great race and what humom might cook for dinner. She can see me out of her bedroom window and catches me occasionally lift my head to sniff some exotic aroma passing me by. Just now this morning, out of the corner of her eye she saw a tiny, flashing gray movement on the deck floor. It was one of the tiny baby squirrels, of the very late litter born the end of this summer. Humom has been worried they may not make it for they are so tardy in producing their winter coat and insulation, not to mention all the bullying neighbor squirrels. I think this one braved exploring our deck because there are some seeds and pods left from our garden that humom is waiting to dry out for harvest. Needless to say, being the wildlife chaser and warrior I am she was a little frazzled when it ventured to the end of my throne/chaise and hiked up on it's back legs to peek up. I lifted my head, sniffed the air which led me to see the little one about two husky tails length away. I don't know if it was the naivety or pure fear & horror that made the little one freeze and Sasha/humom gasp. She ran to the deck door and by then the little one had scampered a safe distance away and humom threw out some stale sesame crackers and called me in. I had to remind her that I learned in the brief and blessed time we knew Simon/Simone I could defer what was acceptable and welcomed and what wasn't...even when my humom changed her mind so often in regards to those gray entities. It truly wasn't some twist of fate nor fancy trick that I would recognize our friend and let it wander into our kitchen if we were late with snacks or treats. Nor was it acceptable for the others to bully it around in circles leading it to safety of our deck or Sasha's voice. Numerous times she witnessed me chasing every gray tail except Simone/Simone because it was willing to take a chance on us like I did with my human early in our own personal venture. Sometimes going against the grain or nature reaps the biggest rewards and now humom keeps a vigilant eye on the tiny, tardy squirrel babes and she knows I join her as a champion to ensure they get a chance....those others can risk my bad side/innate wild hunting skills or humom's wrath but Simon/Simone recognized a kin in the underdog role we respect and are drawn to and took a leap of faith which in turn taught us well. For her ( human and all) it may be more expected or recognized but I am constantly proving to her (even being the husky dog) I can and am on the same wavelength at the moments when it truly counts.
I learned my lesson well, I know Simon/Simone along with sibling little squirrel boy witnessed all of this somewhere up there and are proud of us and perhaps guiding those in the gray tribe that need an extra hand to deal, exist and survive in this world full of so many challenges...that a human and more surprisingly a dog may be listening for and hear the call and rise to the unusual challenges that may come our way.
RIP squirrel boy and beloved Simon/Simone.
November 15th 2008 8:08 pm
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Presently I am celebrating two major events.
First is the glorious life encumbered by love and devotion of my friend QUANNAH You may read more about this amazing soul on his page and get a glimpse of the wonderful life he had, special humans and his valiant battle with
Like some of my brave friends, his humans are still fighting, in honor and dedication for loved ones lost by this terribly devastating disease. PLEASE, just look into your pups eyes for a second and you will realize how important it is to educate yourself on this horror with a moment as quick and easy as answering your phone or feeding us pups...IMHA is not picky, no breed , sex or age deters it. One of the biggest champions in battling IMHA is our friend Angel Mica-the wonderpup Mica's diary explains more of the situation and also how your humans can get involved....act instead of react!
Back to my friend QHANNAH. He set off for the Rainbow Bridge a year ago today. I remember last year at this time, everyone was abuzz, getting ready for the holidays and to give thanks when this news crashed our world. I remember being so delighted and proud that he had recently passed his AKC Good Citizen trials and what a long way he had come from his humble and tragic beginnings. I would glimpse at his pictures and know secretly behind that strong, stoic stature laid an open, trusting heart of gold. He like way too many left us too soon but it comforts me to know his humans opened their hearts even wider in a time of grief to a loving and needy pup QUANNAH's pack kin ELI. They share a wonderful fursis MOLLY MAE Rest in peace dear friend and our hearts,paws and arms stretch out to your family & pack.
I also want to mention my utterly gorgeous (even with mud on her face) and noble friend Oakley is celebrating her woofday tomorrow, Sunday. She's still just a kid/young pup compared to me but her poise and wisdom perks my ears to listen whenever she utters a woof or sound and if there is ever a true and kind friend around, she is one of those gems at the helm.
Life, death, life. The endless circle, the never ending tributes and celebrations.
I wish everyone health & happiness and the true gumption for our humans to act, prepare instead of waiting and reacting when forced to for the love of us dogs.
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