Sunday, March 24, 2013

Vancouver, BC and Snowshoeing

A few weekends ago we made our second trip to Vancouver, BC to visit our friend Carolyn. This trip reaffirmed what we learned on the first trip: that Vancouver is a beautiful, cool, fun city. We met up with some acquaintances (now new friends) Caitlin and Martin and hung out for the day. That evening we got all you eat sushi and then went out for a night on the town.

Caitlin and Martin

The next morning we went to Cypress Mountain resort to do some snowshoeing with a whole crew of people. It turns out it was one of the resorts used in the 2010 Winter Olympics for freestyle skiing and snowboarding.

We have been out snowshoeing a few times now and got the necessary gear (poles, snowshoes, warm/dry clothes). It is a really fun activity. It’s just like hiking except you are walking on snow. I guess that doesn’t make it sound that fun, but it’s more novel than hiking because you feel like somehow you are defying physics by not sinking into the snow.  It was a beautiful day full of beautiful scenery!

View from the top!


Avalanche Danger - "Considerable"

Awesome view of Vancouver from the road up to the resort (only 20 minutes from the city).

After a long day of hiking up and down mountains, we went and got some awesome poutine. This is becoming a tradition for when we visit Vancouver, and I’m fine with that, because it is fantastic. 
Gotta get that squeaky cheese!

and of course we got another Canadian delicacy... Tim Hortons.

The awesome view from Carolyn's primely-located penthouse apartment .

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Our Child: Sagan

I thought I would do a post about Sagan, as several interesting things have happened in regards to him recently. 

First, oddly enough, Sagan’s picture has become the Facebook profile picture of a Vet’s office in Richmond, Midlothian Animal Clinic!  The picture was taken by my good friend Luci while her and Ricky were out here visiting. You may remember reading about our journey into the wilderness of theOlympic National Park. Luci does photography work for this Vet and submitted this picture of Sagan to them and now he is FAMOUS.... and he doesn’t even know!  Sagan never checks Facebook….

Sagan is the Posterchild for a Richmond, VA area Vet!

Second, we had a biopsy done on a re-occurring lesion that shows up on the roof of his mouth (towards the back of his throat). We had spoken to some Vets about it previously, and the consensus was that it was Eosinophilic Granuloma Complex, which they believe is caused by an allergic reaction, presumably to food. It is common in cats, but not too much with dogs. Apparently it can be common in Huskies, which is weird b/c the Craigslist post (where we got him from) mentioned he was part Husky, however we wrote that off, as he grew up to have no Husky-like traits. He has been on a special restricted diet for 1.5 years, since we first noticed it.

The lesion came back again, this time about the size of nickel, so we had a biopsy done. The results came back confirming the allergy hypothesis, showing it is Eosinophilic and Neutrophilic Stomatitis, aka… he probably has an allergy. It's NOT cancer…yeah!  So basically we may end up doing nothing, and see if it goes away naturally, or maybe switch his food again in an attempt to find a protein/grain that doesn’t affect him.

Third, a Vet technician mentioned that Sagan looks like a Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever. I had never heard of it, but I think she may be RIGHT! Upon reading up on it, I think that Sagan is part NSDTR and part Golden Retriever. 

Sagan is gold in color, whereas they are usually are more “red”, and he is slightly bigger/heavier, but other than that, he looks just like them, including the EXACT same white markings, fits the description, and has very similar mannerisms (based on the videos I have seen about them). 

A Google search for “NSDTR will return some pictures that look very similar to Sagan. It is so cool have some idea what he is!
Here is a drawing I found of a Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever that looks EXACTLY like sagan!