I ran 6 miles this morning–3 laps around Silver Lake. Running past the dog park where I used to take Tasha, I noticed 3 Siberian Huskies playing–standing on their hind legs like horses do and then getting into a friendly wrestle followed by a chase. All too familiar. I remembered Penny Scott-Fox from Pasadena Humane Society lecturing one time that Siberian Huskies should only live with their own breed, because they would benefit tremendously from their innate understanding of each other and that they are true pack animals in the way the wolves are. They recognize their own kind, which I have witnessed a number of times with Tasha whenever we came across other huskies.

We had a difficult night. I am now clearly confronted with a decision to make. Every movement demands too much of this old dog even though she has this powerful instinct to step up to the challenge. I don’t think I can ever own another husky after Tasha. Our life together was filled with an array of daily and weekly activities that (hopefully) satisfied her physical needs as a husky, but it also made it very clear to me that the Siberian Huskies truly belong on a vast snowy field where they can run endlessly until their faculties give out. To own another husky in a warm climate would be like owning a caged bird. Don’t get me wrong. They adapt really well. That’s why Tasha lived well past her life expectancy. So, husky owners of SoCal, take heart. I’m just talking about me.

According to my running chart, I was supposed to run 2 of my 6 miles at a marathon goal pace. I did that. It was my fastest 6 miles, but it wasn’t so that I can put another check mark on the chart. It was for my Mighty Siberian on the route that we have ran so many times together. You are such an amazing dog.



Post a comment
  1. July 13, 2012

    I’m sorry about your beautiful Tasha. It’s so hard when our furry companions struggle toward the end of their lives. This post was a wonderful ode to your beloved companion. Thanks for sharing.

    • July 13, 2012

      Thanks for reading and an encouraging comment.

  2. July 13, 2012

    I know how you are hurting! My Tala is my BFF, she is always with me and goes everywhere with me. She has a thyroid problem and some metabolic issues. She is fed less than the others but still shot up to 92 pounds! She has lost almost 20 on her thyroid meds but she is still too big and I see her struggle. I know I will lose them all someday but Tala is special, like you Tasha.

    I feel the same way as you, about owning a husky in warm weather! It seems so selfish. This is why we adopted four, because four other idiot’s somewhere here thought North Carolina was a great place to own a siberian husky… and they ended up abandoned to fate or the compassion of others. But, I know of some dryland mushers in Florida who do all their mushing at midnight!

    I have a silly dream of buying a deserted island off the coast of Maine and letting them run free… but I don’t buy lottery tickets, so that isn’t going to happen.

    Bottom line, if you adopt a rescue, you give the best they can hope for -wherever you are! You are both in our hearts as you make your decision, you will know what is best for her and she will trust you to follow your heart. All is good over the rainbow bridge!

    • July 13, 2012

      Thanks for kind words. I never tried land-mushing with Tasha, but had her pull me on my roller blades a few times. She had a time of her life, but I had to stop eventually. It was getting too dangerous, because I had to take a fall deliberately every time I needed her to stop. :-)

      • July 15, 2012

        OMG you are brave! I ripped my knee up by myself rollerblading! I did see Cesar teach a woman to rollerblade with sibes, he looked like he needed medication when he got back! R didn’t do any mushing this year and I can only imagine what Mukki and Quinn are thinking about that!

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