Sadly, and anyone who has had to lay their dog to rest will know how sadly, on November 24, 2018, I had to lay my 7-year-old Malamute to rest. Ike’s Hope, ‘Ikey’, our cuddle monster, was suffering from bone cancer.
Within a month, December 23rd, 13-year-old Yukitu died in my arms, of stress and grief.
For 25 years I’ve had Malamutes, (our Indigenous sled dogs) two at a time. Their ashes are scattered on the trails at Little Creek Wolf Range and buried by two inukshuks at the beginning of our driveway. They are the ‘wolves’ of the Wolf Range.
I estimated I’m too old to raise more Malamutes. If I died before them, they are too big and difficult for most people to give a good home to. But I want to keep on supporting Canadian dog breeds. I decided a Nova Scotia Duck Toller would be a good size and breed to have on our 50-acre country property. There’s a pond for them to sport in. I contacted breeders but no pups would be available for over a year. I can’t live that long without a dog!
I went to our local shelter and came home with a northern rescue dog. Piji, I call her, ‘my mutt from Nunavut’. She’s a lucky find. Almost as smart as a Malamute, a super-fast runner, persistent, thinks she’s my security guard. She’s happy as can be, running free, with daily food, shelter and companionship at Little Creek Wolf Range.
I’ve been distracted by major changes in my life over the past few years but am back into working on Bear With Me.