Wednesday, March 10, 2010


We had some snow last month which is an unusual occurrence for South Carolina. The dogs seemed to enjoy the time that they spent in the snow--none had ever seen it before. The Labradors thought that it was great sport. The greyhounds weren't so sure.

The snow was gone by the next day, and now it appears that the back of winter is broken and spring is going to be here soon. The dogs are still in their winter coats but shedding is definitely happening. Soon we will be getting baskets of hair off each of the Labradors.

I have to say that the cooler weather is definitely what I prefer. I know that the dogs feel the same way. They are truly cold weather animals. Even the greyhounds don't mind going to dog park or the beach when the weather is cold. One would think that with such low body fat that they would be cold. But they enjoy walking in the water just like a Labrador.

All else is going well. We have had a couple of the girls spayed. Clara is enjoying being inside and Emily will be going to a new home this weekend. Life is just more manageable with fewer dogs and each gets more individual attention. They enjoy watching Charlie work in the garden which has preoccupied him now for several days.

I hope to post some photos of the dogs at the beach soon!

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Hounds getting teeth cleaned today

Sorry for the long time between posts. It seems that time goes by so fast. I haven't decided whether to continue the blog or not since I don't seem to be able to devote as much time to it as I would like. Maybe I will just change the topic a bit to include more about all the dogs that are here. Our number of dogs is now 8 Labradors and 2 greyhounds. That seems so much easier than having around 15 that we used to have.

The greyhounds are getting their teeth cleaned today. Greyhounds seem to have particular problems with periodontal disease, often showing signs as early as two years of age. Symptoms of periodontal disease include:
Greyhound Dental Care
  • Bad breath
  • Red or swollen gums
  • Yellow or brown crust near the gum line
  • Loose or missing teeth
  • Discomfort when the mouth or gums are touched
  • Possible decreased appetite or weight loss due to difficultly in chewing
Our dogs don't have teeth that look like those shown. But we have begun noticing some bad breath from them. So it was time to get their teeth cleaned. This generally becomes an annual thing for greyhounds. Because they are sensitive to anesthesia, it is best to have a vet who is familiar with the breed do the cleaning.

Here are some of the things that owners can do for any breed that will insure good dental care:
  • brush their teeth daily - even twice daily if you find that makes a difference. Experiment with different doggie toothpastes to see if your dog does better on a particular type.
  • get some anti-gingivitis mouthwash and wipe it along the gumline daily.
  • provide safe chew toys that are made especially for helping with dental hygiene.
  • learn how to scale the teeth. It isn't hard to do.
  • feed only dry food
  • check teeth regularly and keep up with appointments to get the teeth cleaned.

Monday, January 04, 2010

To Anonymous

Note: I received the following comment posted on December 25 regarding the death of Tilly. I did delete the comment on the post but wanted to highlight it here. It was sent by an anonymous poster:


I am wondering why you profess to be a dog-loving, ethical breeder when the truth is that your dogs NEVER step foot in your house (oh wait, you consider your attached garage the house) and you consistently sell temperament and congenitally-impaired dogs to unknowing people. Congratulations! You're a true testament to this wonderful breed. Poor Tilly deserved to live out her years in the confort of a loving home, but all she got was the hard, cold floor of a garage. Rest in peace sweet girl. May the gates of heaven show you all the life luxuries you missed living with the Wenners.

Dear Anonymous:
I am wondering whether I know you and how much time you have spent in my home. If you have, I know that you were welcomed hospitably. I wonder what I have done to you to deserve this comment. Maybe you were just having a bad Christmas. I don't suppose you would call me or email to actually let me know what the reasons were, but I would appreciate it if you would.

I'm wondering how often you visited my home over the 14 years of Tilly's life. Since it appears you have been there a lot, then you must know that the "doggy" room is heated and air conditioned, has three large dog beds, lots of toys, and music. You are right that while we were both working during the day, the older dogs spent their day in this room. Once we were home from work, they were turned out and at night come in the house. When my husband retired, Tilly and the two greyhounds were turned out in the paddocks for a couple of hours in the afternoon. Tilly especially enjoyed watching the greyhounds run around.

As far as selling impaired dogs with bad temperaments to unknowing people, I have had few complaints over all these years about the dogs. In fact, I have been most grateful that there have been so few problems. Tilly was a great producer and much of the soundness in the lines, I attribute to her. Again, I would like to talk with you since you seem to have much more information than I do. I think that it's rare indeed for any breeder to never produce a problem. In fact, I don't know of anyone who has not produced some kind of problem when breeding Labradors. These are dogs that we are breeding not machines.

About two years ago, after becoming an AKC judge, I made a decision to not breed anymore. It was a difficult decision. And it largely had to do with the stress of whelping puppies, seeing the bitches in labor, and worrying about the dogs. You probably understand this and know a lot about the trials and tribulations of breeding. It is a difficult and often heartbreaking hobby.

Well, I hope that you give me a call or email me. Maybe we can load up all the dogs and have them come to visit your house.

Best wishes to you in the coming year,
Elizabeth Wenner
Surry Labradors