Monday, October 31, 2016

Sunday, October 30, 2016

Happy Hound-O-Ween!

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Wowee! The biggest day of the year for our Greyhound buddies has arrived! 
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Large Photo: Drena and Jeremy with their super pups Honor, Valor, Freedom
Upper Right: Veronica with her Team Unicorn - Bettina and Dennis
Middle Right: Billy and Shannon with the debonaire duo of Trouble and Sugaree
Bottom Right: Carol with her super hip trio of Melissa, Stari, and Love
Bottom Center: Pat and Rick with Elvis and his groupies: Flash, Gabby, and Jester
Bottom Left: Bille and the beautifully fashionable Skyy.
Hound-O-Ween was celebrated in big fashion, as all the greytest hound models in the fashion industry showed up to have their portraits taken. Our feature models are the newest members of our Hound-O-Ween gathering.
Umm... all I can say is that it is a good thing this group doesn't drink!
Oh yes...I almost are the goofy duo of Laurie and Drew with their equally goofy pups, Lady Flame and Toby.
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Ahh...that's better! Even though this group didn't walk the runway, they still represented the greyhound species suitably well for Hound-O-Ween. 
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Have you ever wondered what it takes to get divas to pose? Well your questions should be answered by the photo series of Team Unicorn. It sure is a challenge to get everyone looking in the same direction!
"Phtttt"...says Trouble. "Let's go play some more!"
And, then there's Trouble. He said, "Enough already with the photography. I just want to run wild, run free, and bark!"

I don't know about everyone else's pups, but ours seem to be a bit over tired and restless tonight. I don't know how much sleep we are going to get with all this sleep-yipping and sleep-growling, and sleep-barking going on!
Click on the photo for a larger view.
Enough sleep already! Drew found a group picture that I took that actually had Flash in it (he was hiding in the official group photo, and Toby's face was showing (he was looking at Shannon in the official group photo.)

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Hound-O-Ween Eve Apparition

'Tis Hound-O-Ween Eve, and all is quiet...all is calm... Aughhhhh!!!!!!! Grrrrrrr........
What the heck is that rising from the ashes of the wood stove? Something scary is reflected in the glass!
The Apparition of Hound-O-Ween has risen and is haunting the hallowed hound ground of Bowdoin. 

Calling all hounds! Calling all hounds! Converge at Caesar Pond, on Hound-O-Ween, to help chase the apparition back to the evil underworld...Wear your scariest costume and howl, howl, howl...

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Toby v5.0

It's not every day that a pup turns 5 years old. Toby partied hardy today and is going to sleep well tonight! His daily activities were, in this order:
  1. Peeing
  2. Pooping
  3. Eating
  4. Sleeping
  5. Walking along Starbird Corner (they made it about 1/2 the way due to it being so hot outside.)
  6. Peeing multiple times and pooping multiple times down Starbird Corner Rd.
  7. Sleeping
  8. Snack (1/2 of a carrot)
  9. Sunning himself on front deck
  10. Snack (1/2 can of French cut green beans, salt-free)
  11. Snack (slice of a banana)
  12. Sleeping
  13. Brief play with Lady Flame (her present to him was to engage him in play, which, by the way, rarely ever happens;-)
  14. Dinner
  15. Sleeping
  16. Peeing
  17. Sleeping through the night in his jammies

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Toby's GQ Photo on the Androscoggin River Bank

(Click on the photo for a larger view.)
Toby said that it wasn't fair that Lady Flame should have all the glamour! So, back to the river we went for another quick photoshoot. Toby went leash-free this time. Drew was nearby in case Toby started to walk forward.

We have decided that we'll have to do this in the mid-morning next year to get optimum light. 

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Lady Flame on the Androscoggin River

Lady Flame on the bank of the Androscoggin River
(Click on the photo for a larger view...go on...she is gorgeous!)

Papermill Trail Walk to capture autumn colors

(Click on any photo for a larger view.)
We took another walk down Papermill Trail to try and capture some stunning autumn colors. There was the threat of rainfall, so our walk was cut short. And, the dark sky, along with the lateness of the day, made it difficult to capture nice, clean shots. I had hoped to get photos worthy of a calendar, but was not very successful. The photos are incredibly grainy as I had to shoot at a minimum of ISO 500, and then had to pump the ISO up to 1000.
The pups did sort of pose on the rock for me. Lady Flame has learned to avert her head while I photograph her (thanks to Bettina, for teaching Flame this trick to frustrate any well meaning photographer;-) 
Drew took the pups to the edge of water. What a beautiful backdrop!
Toby is incredibly photogenic. He is our star model for autumn.
See what I mean about Lady Flame avoiding the camera? She is such a spoil sport. Getting long schnoz shots is always fun! At least Toby can't see me, so he cooperates just fine, thank you very much;-)
But, Drew did catch Flame unaware for a microsecond!
Why the long face, Toby? Is it time to go home? Our biggie boy is so expressive.
Back home we go! We ended up getting a bit damp on the way back, but had a great time. The dogs were so pooped after having been on two walks today;-)

Starbird Trail Walk

Drew and the pups went for a nice, long walk on Starbird Trail this morning. Due to the cloudiness of the day, the autumn colors were very rich.
And, the pups were really into walking. The leaves were falling, the trail was relatively dry, and the air was cool and damp.
The trail wound around under thick and thin canopies of a wide variety of trees, which lead to an air of mystery as to what stunning scenes would appear over the next hill or turn.
Lady Flame posed amidst the brilliant colors of the understory.
Someone did a bit of rough rock balancing on a stone wall the lined the trail. It's not pretty, but it did add a bit of interesting texture to the wall.
They passed some rather sluggish bumblebees who were congregated on several flower stems. Drew said that Toby's leash brushed across the stems, and the bees were not disturbed in the least.
The trail lead on and they all enjoyed over an hour's worth of walking and sniffing until it was time to drive home.
And, the roadway was as colorful as the forest, with rich yellows and reds as far as the eye could see.
This season is way too fleeting, and it's too bad that our fur kids don't appreciate the views as much as we do.

Monday, October 10, 2016

Papermill Trail

The trail is beginning to get colorful!
Wowee, it is one cool and blustery day outside (the temp. is in the mid-50s with a 14 mph wind.) We decided to celebrate Columbus Day by going for a walk along the Papermill Trail. There were lots of other like-minded people out there with us, and the trail was one busy place;-)
We were pleased to see some nice color along the trail.
The riverbank has a ways to go before peak color occurs, but there were some patches of brilliance. I peaked over this boulder to see some colorful trees across the Androscoggin River.
It was certainly a challenge photographing Drew and the hounds, due to the harshness of the light and uneven shady spots all along the trail. 
Purty Lady Flame
But, at least it was colorful. We'll try again later in the week and hope for a cloudy day with more even lighting;-)

Saturday, October 8, 2016

Popham Beach Group Photo

Left to right:
Sheila and Skyy, Veronica with Bettina and Dennis, Kristin with Herschel,
Drena with Honor?, Carol with Love and Melissa, Drew with Lady Flame,
Kent with Stari, and Jeremy with Freedom and Valor
(Click on the photo for an enlarged view.)
Photo by Bille Axell, Axell Photography.

Popham Beach Greyhound Meet-up

We had a wonderful Greyhound Meet-up at Popham Beach. This video is dedicated to Sheila, the energizer bunny of the Meet-Up, as she frolicked with the pups in the surf! Kristin also braved the water for a quick foray into the surf with Herschel and Skyy;-) Fun, fun, fun! The video ends with a "Happy Birthday Howl-Out" to Bettina!

Present were the following Greyhounds and their people:
  • Freedom, Valor, and Honor who brought Jeremy and Drena.
  • Herschel who brought Kristin.
  • Stari, Love, and Melissa who brought Carol.
  • Bettina and Dennis who brought Veronica.
  • Skyy who brought Bille, Sheila, and Kent.
  • Lady Flame and Toby who brought Drew and Laurie.
This adds up to 12 hounds and 10 humans.

2nd Annual Popham Beach Meet-Up

Drew, Veronica, and Carol untangle the first hounds to arrive at the beach!
This was Dennis' first beach visit and he was pumped to the max!
Bettina, Stari, Melissa, Love, Lady Flame, and Toby are
old hands at being beach bums!
(Click on any photo for a larger view.)
Whew! We met up with a bunch of our friends, both 2-legged and 4-legged, for an awesome walk on Popham Beach! (All photos are by Laurie and Drew Haines unless otherwise indicated.)
Kristin and Herschel arrived next. It was a pleasure to meet them on their
first visit to Popham Beach.
Bille, Sheila, and Kent arrived next with Skyy.
They were followed by Jeremy and Drena with their 3 loverly patriotic hounds:
Honor, Valor, and Freedom.
The hounds were so happy to see each other and we enjoyed welcoming new people to our big extended hound family. Bille (our favorite professional pet photographer) organized this shindig. We had a lovely expanse of low tide beach to walk, and walk we did!
Carol, our hound mentor (along with Veronica), has been walking the beach with various hounds for many years. She is like the pied piper of hounds...
Sheila adds a ton of spark and life to any party. She took it upon herself to run lots of hounds through the surf. Skyy is an old hand at running through the waves, but Lady Flame wasn't too sure about it;-)
We made our way toward Fox Island, which is located at the end of a sand bar at low tide.
Our goal was to climb up Fox Island for a photo shoot by Bille. The first stop was on part of the island that overlooked the beach. You can see Bille already at work;-)
Veronica, Bettina, and Dennis were the first to be photographed. Bettina happens to be one of Bille's first Greyhound crushes, and she absolutely adores him back! (Mind you, this is my quick snapshot, not Bille's professional one. See his on Axell Photography.)
Even Toby took a turn at being photographed! Bille got a great photo of our biggie boy;-) But, this was as far as we could take Toby on the rocks. It is too difficult for Toby to navigate all the uneven surfaces, as he is mostly blind, and he cannot see where his foot placement is. So, back down to the beach we went.
Lady Flame's coloration and patterning make her blend in perfectly
with the sand and rocks of Fox Island. She is our super model!
Toby is the most gorgeous greyhound we have ever seen.
He should be on the cover of GQ (Greyhound Quarterly;-)
So, we went down on the beach to photograph our pups and to get some video of the ocean waves. I love photographing our hounds. They are both easy on the eyes, and I practiced holding onto their leashes while using my new wide-angle lens to see if I could get their entire body into the shot.  Success;-)
Kent assisted Carol with her hounds up on the island.
A gaggle of hounds on the island granite. They get along so well that
they don't hesitate to rest their heads upon each other's backs;-)
After a short time, Drew took Lady Flame back up onto the island to hobnob with the rest of the hounds. He got a few snapshots and participated in a greyt group photo by Bille.
Then, it was time to head back down to the beach for some water time! 
Skyy and Stari were the first to romp in the waves with Sheila.
Skyy is an official water dog!
Sheila had a blast with more hounds as she frolicked through the waves. She had us laughing continuously...
Dennis and Bettina lead the way back along the sand bar.
We had to keep an eye on the incoming tide as the sand bar gets covered at high tide. So, it was time to start heading back to the "beach proper."
This horse was incredibly tolerant of the gaggle of hounds.
Stari is fascinated by the horse.
We met a gorgeous horse on our journey along the sand bar. The hounds were fascinated with this big 4-legged beastie!
Stari couldn't contain himself and had to sample the horse's big schnoz, much to everyone's surprise;-)
Freedom and Valor were especially interested in the horse, and were better behaved around it than Stari;-)
Our lunchtime feast was calling to us, so we headed back down the beach to the picnic area.
Happy Birthday, Queen Bettina!
We were being constantly reminded, by Bettina, that it was her "barkday" (birthday), and that we were supposed to celebrate it with gusto, which we did!