Good News in Threes!

Wednesday I got the best email ever! A note from Dr Amy Lane (Oncology resident at MUVH) to say that Raven’s results from the FNA (Fine Needle Aspirate) came back clear cytologically – there are no lymphocytes in her lymph nodes currently. This combined with her clinical remission is considered full remission from cancer. This is an email that will be kept forever! She still has 7 more chemo treatments to go however currently she is as well as she can be. It is not a cure of course, by it’s very nature a cure is often not identified until the dog dies at a normal old age of natural or non-related cancer causes. I’m of course hoping for the best and thinking positively – Raven and I, in a combined vigilant approach via her chemotherapy/nutrition and other supplements/alternative therapies, will beat this monster back for many years to come. Whilst I can take a very relished delight in her wellbeing, Tim and I both know that we cannot let up for a second on doing everything we can to help make this remission permanent! I examine Raven every day (and whilst she is incredibly stoic about it I know she’d rather I didn’t!) for any kinds of changes in her – from her lymph nodes to her commonly itchy areas to her nails to her skin to her joints. She saw Liz Franks Monday and Liz was absolutely amazed at how well she was doing. When she asked about whether she was competing still, I very proudly informed her that just that previous Saturday Raven had run in Masters Agility and won, coming 2nd in Masters Jumping. She was obviously feeling very good and responding well to all that we were doing for her.
So that has been a number of positives this past week:
Saturday at the GSDA Trial Raven wins Masters Agility and Cypher comes 2nd!
Raven comes 2nd in Masters Jumping – both passes help inch us that little bit closer to Agility Champion.
Cypher also runs clear in Open Jumping and Masters Jumping.
Tuesday – Cypher is the sire of 10 brand new bouncing baby Border Collies (6 boys 4 girls) to Hotnote Good n Sassy (a litter sister to Karen’s 3 yr old Riot – Hotnote AsGood Asitgets ADM JDM ADO JDO SPDX GD SD ET)
Wednesday – I get the email informing that Raven is in full clinical and cytological remission! So good news all round….we also managed (via Tim’s ability to get on the internet at just the right moment) to secure two 6th row tickets to see The Police in Feb 2008! I, having been a fan of Sting and The Police since I was 14, never dreamt that I would ever be able to see The Police live. They broke up well before I was of rock concert going age and of the financial means to do so! They never looked like they would ever get back together! So to say that put a smile on my dial all day was an absolute understatement!
Wednesday afternoon I took Spryte and Cypher and we bundled into Robyn’s van and went down Mandurah way to play with the sheep. This was the first time my two had ever seen them and I had no idea whether they would show any interest or not. I must admit we made it a little difficult for Cypher – he was made to travel in a crate sitting right next to Brydie who had just come in season the day before so I did not have any great expectations for him! Spryte went in first and after she had carefully accessorised her ruff with the latest most recent Eau de Sheep Shit (a lovely dark green/brown colour it was too) which took the first three minutes she noticed these woolly things I was playing with actually looked quite interesting. Within another five minutes she was circling around them, watching them closely and completely mesmerised by these sheep! Yep she’s got the instinct! So after another couple of dogs had a turn I took Cypher in. He spent a bit longer then three minutes checking the pen out I must admit. He decided he needed to pee and poop first (numerous times) and then he finally noticed I was getting very excited about these funny looking animals. He showed bursts of interest I suppose is how you would describe it. He’d want to chase them for a minute or so and make them move and then he’d go sniff. To be honest I was pleased just to get this as I did have a sneaking suspicion that he wouldn’t have any interest at all! By the time he had a third go he was showing more consistent bursts. Considering he spent most of his down time lusting after Brydie I did end up having hope for him! By Spryte’s third go I was having to figure out how to walk, which way to turn and what I should use the rake for. I am still in two minds about whether I should go the herding route. I know it would be fun and I’m sure I’ll enjoy it but I’m still not sure about the Herding Vs Agility thing. I think one could get addicted to Herding quite quickly. My first passion is (and always will be) agility. I love it, love training it, love trialling it and everything to do with it. I want to be good at it; I want my dogs and me to be the best that we can be at it. Does this goal conflict with playing at herding at the same time? I’m not sure. I will no doubt probably try and get some herding titles on Spryte at least and maybe Cypher. I’ll play it by ear I think and see what happens. I still have so much more work to do with Spryte’s training and yet I have to be careful not to overface her in this training. There is a herding trial this weekend, Steph (our herding instructor) told me I could enter her on the day if I wanted and she would pass her Herding Instinct test no worries. There is nothing else on, I must admit I am tempted! We’ll see though, must get some piccies, if it is nice weather maybe I can talk Tim into coming with me and taking some herding photos.



  1. Steve · August 5, 2007

    Simone,Congratulations for Raven! That is wonderful news.I too am slightly conflicted about herding. Around here it ends up being a pretty expensive hobby and requiring long travel times. It seems to be challenging in another “dimension” since you have to learn about how sheep think and behave too. But it looks like our two youngest have a lot of instinct for it. We’ll give it a try. I figure if they end up liking it more than agility I can learn more about herding. I always say I do flyball for our Milo and Milo does agility for me. That way we accomodate each other’s likes.Here’s to learning new things!Steve

  2. Elf · August 6, 2007

    Congratulations on a wonderful week, especially the Raven news.-ellen

  3. PAW Blacks · August 13, 2007

    Excellent news, I have been checking in every now and then. You must be very happy and excited. cheers Peter dw from NZ

  4. Cedarfield · August 21, 2007

    What wonderful news! I’m very happy for you and also very jealous of the tickets to see the Police.

  5. Yoda · August 23, 2007

    Congratulations on the wonderful news! On the herding front, it looks awesome. The pics are great. When I got my golden, I wanted to do hunt tests, tracking, obedience, everything! But limited time and money…

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