Three of the six puppies were picked up the day before we arrived, with just our two boys and the girl the breeder kept still there. Little Martok was a bit suspicious, but soon played with us and his siblings with great enthusiasm. I even got to watch Chris' reaction to a house of ten adult border collies racing around...after that, four seems pretty calm!
Martok took to us pretty well, as evidenced by this photo of a man and his puppy. :) We put collars on the boys for the first time, and their sister thought this was great as she could grab the collars to drag them around without them being able to do much about it! After a few hours of playtime and chatter, we packed up the two boys into their carriers to begin the journey back to Seattle. Neither one of them were very thrilled about this state of events, and there was a lot of shrieking in the van on our way back to the airport. Luckily for us, this abated once we got to the airport (I think they tired themselves out), and they were well behaved going through security, and both slept through our dinner in the terminal.
As we boarded the plane, we let them stick their heads out of their carriers, which got lots of "awww" remarks from our fellow travelers. We were lucky enough to have a row of three seats to ourselves, so even with the puppies in their carriers we still had room. Poor Sirius was very hot, with his double coat inside that carrier, so once we were airborne we picked up his carrier and put it on the seat between us, where he quickly passed out and slept through the whole flight. Martok snoozed through the whole flight as well, including takeoff and landing - a welcome change from the shrieking his aunt Ezri treated me to on her flight home!
We did have a few days with both boys in the house, and one night that week while they were both sleepy I was able to get the above picture. Curzon did play with Martok a good bit in the few days they were together, enough that I have video of it, and the photo shoot we did with Artis produced some incredible shots as well.
Much to our surprise, Martok managed to convince his sister/aunt Ezri to snuggle with him on the ground level of her princess castle - most of the time she hangs out on the upper level, which he's too little to reach just yet. I had to sneak around in the garage to get this photo, but it was worth it!
Ezri has had to play auntie quite a bit recently, such as last Saturday when we took both of the puppies to swim for the very first time. There's a place in Woodinville called Mega-Dogs, which has a small indoor pool that is available for therapy swimming at very nice rates. That's where I took Curzon for his rehab swimming last year, and it's the best choice I could think of for a warm pool where we could swim with the puppies to teach them how. It didn't go quite as well as we hoped, neither of them immediately took to the water, but they did well and had no problems swimming, so now we just need to convince them it's fun.
The boys definitely have fun playing together, even something as simple as playing chase-and-bite while racing around the pool. This is a great picture, especially with the expressions - Martok is definitely up to no good, while Sirius looks a little too innocent...
This week has seen a lot more puppy discipline in our house, as shown by Ezri's Mad Teeth in the photos above. Much more growling, removal of toys, and general loss of patience has been shown by both Ezri and Jadzia - nothing out of the ordinary or dangerous, of course, but amusing to us humans all the same. Ezri is still willing to play with Martok a little bit, but she does not want him chewing on her toys. She's actually rather devilish, and if he has something she wants, then she'll go play with something else to get his attention, let him take the second thing, then go get the original item (or spot!) that she wanted. Smart girl.
And of course, we've been taking Martok to puppy classes once a week at Ahimsa in Ballard - the same school I where took Ezri through puppy kindergarten. Part of this week's lesson was body handling and grooming, including putting clothes on the puppies - Martok did really well with that, even if he does look sad in this photo. He actually ran around with the clothes on without a care in the world until he ran right out of the socks!
It's been eleven days since we lost Curzon, and while I'm not over it (and may never be), it is just starting to get easier. I can breathe better, and thinking of him doesn't automatically mean tears every time, just some of the time. This afternoon we will go and pick up his ashes from the vet on our way home from work, and bring him home where he belongs. I know that one day we will scatter his ashes, probably in the ocean where he so loved to swim, but I don't think I'm going to be ready to do that on our vacation this year. For now, having his physical remains home with us will be a comfort, as odd as that sounds, and hopefully it will help us continue to heal.