Wednesday, November 20, 2019

Dog Body Language, Photos, Early Thanksgiving Greetings, and Lhasa Christmas Ideas

Happy Thanksgiving!

I know it is still early for a Thanksgiving post, but it'll be a busy holiday, so I am getting an early start. I hope you enjoy today's post. There are puppy pictures, information about dog communication, photos from friends and puppy buyers.

We have a dog named Henri. Henri is not a Lhasa; he is an Affenpinscher (but we love him anyway!) He is our granddog who came to live with us because he did not appreciate the new human addition to the family that had previously been his and his alone. Henri was a spoiled “only child” and about 6 years old when his human “brother” was born. 

Henri is not too fond of being the odd dog out among our many Lhasas, but he has learned to cope and has maintained his personal identity of being top dog (i.e., he is a legend in his own mind). That is to say, his inflated ego is intact. For the most part, the Lhasas ignore him, mainly because when they were puppies, he managed to cow them in no uncertain terms!

When it is time for me to go to work (or really, anywhere), I tell the dogs, “I’m leaving. It’s time for me to go to work.” They know the word “work” and resign themselves to not seeing me for a while. Henri, however, does not want to give up his resting place on the sofa or in one of the many dog beds that are scattered around our family room. He finds it demeaning that I would relegate him to the same room as the Lhasas.

“Let’s go, Henri!” I tell him. He knows the routine but day after day, he moves oh so slowly toward the door to the dogs’ room, like a reluctant fourth grader who dawdles each morning when it’s time to get out the door to catch the school bus on testing day. When he does not move quickly enough, especially when I am running late, my voice gets louder, harsher, more insistent. “Move it, Henri. I need to get to work. Hurry up!” (Like the mom who is trying to get the fourth grader out the door so he does not miss the bus!) 

Henri continues his slow walk to the door, head down, tail down, ears back. I know what he is trying to tell me, do you?

What is Your Dog Trying To Tell You?

We all know a happy, satisfied, carefree, confident dog when we see one. Likewise, we recognize the message communicated by an angry snarling dog. But a dog’s body language can also tell us other things a dog may be feeling. See if you can figure out from the following descriptions just what your dog is trying to communicate.

1. Dog’s ears are pinned back.  
a)Dog is excited. b) Dog is relaxed. c) Dog is submissive or fearful.

2. Dog is calm and confident .
a) He looks at you with a hard stare. b) His eyes are open wide, probably making eye contact. c) His eyes are averted, making no eye contact

3. Dog’s front legs are flat on the floor, butt in the air, tail wagging.
a) He is inviting play. b) He is being submissive. c) He is being aggressive.

4.Dog is yawning. a)He is tired. b) He just woke up and needs some oxygen. c) He is feeling stress and is trying to calm himself.

5.Dog turns his head away. a) He is watchingfor the mail carrier. b) He is pretending he is not there. c) He is trying to avoid a source of stress.

6. Dog’s lips are pulled back; teeth are showing.
a) He is being assertive, threatening. b) He is inviting play. c) He may be showing submission.

1. C
2. B
3. A
4. A, B, and C
5. C
6. A and C

Actually, there are numerous ways dogs show fear or stress in situations they perceive as threatening. These include yawning, turning their heads away from a source of stress, licking their lips, freezing upon perceiving a threat (before going into a fight or flight mode), pinning ears back, pulling back lips to show teeth, and slowing their walk.

Your dog can also demonstrate submissive and appeasing behavior in a number of ways: avoiding eye contact, squinting, pinning back his ears, lowering his body or cowering, slowing his walk. 

What about dogs that are confident. How do they behave? Their eyes are soft and open wide. They willingly make eye contact. They are relaxed as they survey or move through their environment. Tails are wagging. Ears are relaxed. Heads are held high.

For more complete information about how to understand what your dog is trying to tell you, google “understanding dog body language” and you will find many sources of information. Here is a good one to get you started: Canine Body Language by Victoria Stillwell.

Puppy Photos

The Josh and Greta puppies are growing so fast. They are almost 10 weeks old. They are in to everything now. Nothing at puppy eye level is safe from their curiosity. Puppy battles are short lived. Attention spans are brief...too many things to explore. If one finds a toy to play with, the other two leave what they are doing and try to take it away. Ornery! They make me tired, just watching them! Oh, and did I mention how fast they can move from across the room to under my feet?

This is the female we call Sassy
This is the male, Enzo

This female is called Biscuit

I was up all night last Wednesday/Thursday, waiting to serve as midwife to Jenna as she had her puppies. The first was born shortly after 3AM on Thursday. She has four puppies, 3 gold boys and one cream girl. Their sire is Breaker, 
BIS-Veteran, GCH CH Joyslyn's Heartbreaker ROM.

The new babies, 2 days old

Notes and Photos From Others

Vivian wrote, "LiLea is doing stupendous!! Her stance shows her superior breeding every time she stops and stands. I love her to pieces."

Dan wrote, "Hi Joyce! Hope all is well. Dalai was actually spayed last week and the paperwork is attached. She has been such a joy and fit right in with our family."

Dalai -- with the unique one white and one black leg

Chuck and Steve sent greetings and two photos of their Cooper, who looks very much like Rafe! "Just wanted to hi from Southern Illinois.  Cooper is doing well. The love of our lives. Happy Holidays to you and your family."

Jan sent a photo of her dogs, Lilly and Zoey and wrote about Zoey, "Zoey goes to obedience kindergarten 3 days a week and is of course doing very well.  They say she is very bright , alert and gets along with her other puppy friends well.  They say she is slightly a little too enthusiastic but I think that is a great trait to have in the long run! She gets along and loves Lilly so much!  Lilly mothers her when she is over zealous or rambunctious but is so much happier now that Zoey is part of our family!"

I wrote her saying that the two reminded me of salt and pepper shakers and also of those magnets of a white dog and black dog we kids played with so long ago. I think one magnet was a Westie and the other a Scottie. Memories!

Jan wanted to know if I had heard from any owners of Zoey’s littermate. That would be the Breaker and Onyx puppies born 4/21/19. I heard from Dan about Dalai. So if any of you others are reading this, please send some information and a photo for the blog!

I bit the bullet this morning and got out the clippers. Autumn's beautiful long hair ended up all over the floor. She was not particularly happy, so I did not take her picture. I also clipped Chance. He was happy to be rid of his heavy coat. It made me sad though, his long black hair was a pretty shiny black.

Lhasa Apso Article

The November issue of ShowSight Magazine has a very nice article about the Lhasa Apso, titled "The Almost Perfect Dog." Go to

and flip through pages until you get to page 365, where the article begins. The article is toward the back of the magazine, so start flipping pages from the back. You'll find the article faster. 

Lhasa-Inspired Items for Christmas

If you are looking for a Lhasa-themed gift for a friend for Christmas, the following links should be of great help.

If you are looking for Lhasa-themed apparel, welcome mats, tote bags, note cards, or Christmas cards, you can find all at the McCartney website. He has drawings of many breeds, so it's also a great place to find a gift for a friend who has a breed other than a Lhasa. 

You can also find Lhasa-themed Christmas cards by going to

Just a hint: Many of these cards look great in a matted picture frame!

Also check out Pipsqueak Productions. The site has products for many breeds, including the Lhasa Apso. There you can find cards, stationary, dish towels, pot holders, Christmas ornaments, tote bags, apparel, key rings, garden flags, mugs, trivets, picture frames, mouse pads, and magnets.

Happy shopping!

Canine Chronicle Rankings - September 2019

For being shown only sparingly, the three Joyslyn's dogs that I showed managed to hang on to the rankings through September. Chance's points came from two weekends of wins. Josh's came from one weekend. Autumn's came from three weekends. Not too bad...

So, since they might be deleted from the rankings when the October numbers come out, I decided to take screen shots of the charts and post them here!

Here is how Autumn sits in the All Breed Rankings.

Autumn #7 and Josh #20 in  the Breed Rankings

Chance ranked #15 in the National Owner Handler Series

Autumn again. #17 in Grand Champion Rankings

Yeah, I know it's bragging...but I am really proud of my dogs and their accomplishments. Those of you who have puppies from Chance and Josh can bask in some of the spotlight too!

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving! 

Here is a Thanksgiving Blessing recipe that I thought was kinda cool. In a large bowl, add the following ingredients and mix it all up. No cooking or baking is needed.

  • Bugles that are shaped like a cornucopia or Horn of Plenty, a symbol of our nation's abundance.
  • Pretzels representing arms folded in prayer, a freedom sought by those who founded our country.
  • Candy Corn that represents the sacrifices of the Pilgrims' first winter when food was scarce and settlers survived on just a few kernels of corn a day.
  • Nuts or Seeds to represent the promise of a future harvest, one we will reap only if seeds are planted and tended with diligence. 
  • Dried Fruits that represent harvest gifts of our bountiful land.
  • M&Ms in Fall colors of yellow, orange, and brown to represent Memories of families and friends who came before us and the Miracles of life and love.
  • Hershey's Kisses to represent the love of family and friends that sweeten our lives.
Mix together. Package in 1 quart zip top bags. Add a tag that explains the meaning of each ingredient. Give to friends.

Until next time...


Monday, November 11, 2019


“Kind hearts are the gardens, 
Kind thoughts are the roots, 
Kind words are the flowers, 
Kind deeds are the fruits, 
Take care of your garden 
And keep out the weeds, 
Fill it with sunshine, 
Kind words, and Kind deeds.”

     ~Henry Wadsworth Longfellow 

The Trip to and From the ALAC National Specialty

Where to begin? So much has happened since I left for the National in Albuquerque. The trip there was mostly uneventful until we woke up in Colorado Springs to sleet and drove in it until we got into NM. 

I discovered that I am not a huge fan of mountains and the southwest landscapes. Give me the midwest corn fields!

The weather during National week was unseasonably cold and I wished I had packed my winter coat. Who knew?

The week was a busy one but it passed quickly. We had a low entry this year but those of us who braved the highways, airways, and weather were glad to be together and see each other again. Because we gather from across the US, this week once a year is the only time we get to see friends from other states in person.

If you are interested in seeing photos taken of dogs and people during the specialty week, go to the Facebook page of the American Lhasa Apso Club. 

I took Millie, who was entered in the 6-9 months puppy bitch class. She took 2nd in her class the first 2 days and first place on the 3rd day. She was a bit more comfortable and showy in the ring than Winter was. Winter was nervous about all the people and noise. She disliked walking toward the camera in the corner on the down and back. We have some work to do at training classes this winter!

I gave the Judges' Education Seminar twice, once as a preview to any ALAC member who was interested in seeing it. The slide show and script were revised because of the Standard that was effective October 1. The second presentation was to judges. Both went well and I was pleased that the members who attended gave positive reviews. The next time it will be given will be in Orlando in December. AKC tells me that I have a full house for that one

All too soon we were on our way back home, this time opting to drive through Texas on I-40. I was glad we did. We saw some interesting sights.

We waved hello as we passed the Cadillac Ranch.

We saw the famous "Leaning Tower of Texas" in Groom.

We also stopped in Groom at the Cross Ministries site for an hour or so to see the giant cross and the Stations of the Cross that surrounded it. 

Here are some photos (in no particular order) that my friend and travel companion, Marsha Susag, took while we were there. I included links to the website and stations so you can see all of the stations if you are so inclined. All I can say about it is "amazing." If you ever have a chance to go there, do it!

As we drove through Kansas, we stopped for gas and food at a truck stop and saw a great dog park that was part of the stop. One area was for large dogs (see photos below) and another for small dogs. That section, not pictured, contained agility equipment. What a great idea for tired travelers and  their pets! (Since Winter and Millie had just had a potty break at a rest area a half hour past, they did not get a chance to play in the dog park. They were sleeping and did not even know what they missed!)

I finally arrived home in Macomb on 11/4. Unloading the car and unpacking everything was not nearly as much fun as packing it all up in anticipation of the trip. Unfortunately, the washing machine had sprung a leak during my absence; a part had to be ordered and, of course, had not arrived, so I stuffed dog laundry and people laundry in multiple garbage bags, and off I went to the laundromat. Ugh! Supposedly, the part and the repairman will be here tomorrow.

(For those of you wondering why I just don't buy a new washing machine: The washer we have is under warranty with Sears, and the deal is if it cannot be fixed, they have to replace it. Seriously, with all the money they have spent fixing through this summer and fall, they could already have furnished a replacement.)

The Puppies

The puppies will be 8 weeks old tomorrow. Here are photos we took of them last week when I got home. They are really active now, curious and into everything, suddenly underfoot even though they were clear across the room when I began my step, engaging in puppy battles, barking at the cat (learned that from their mom!), playing tug of war with piddle pads, and being so darn cute that I can't help but love them to pieces!

Notes and Photos from Others

Debra sent these photos of her Seng Kye:

Judy wrote about Gus: "I think God sprinkled Gus with extra gentleness and joyful countenance. He is definitely NOT your everyday Lhasa Apso. There is nothing aloof about him. Or reserved. Or regal. He's just one happy and delightful DOG. Oh, he's a perfect Lhasa Apso in every other way, but he's just so special, and not special in a window-licker way. Although... if he did not ride in his carrier in the car, he probably WOULD be a window licker! LOL" and "It is not just ME who loves Gus and thinks he is FABULOUS! Every single human who has met him is so impressed with his behavior, his happy face, and gentle behavior - and of course his handsomeness! Gus is a great ambassador of the Breed. Although... he is exceptional. I don't think that most Lhasa Apsos would be as FABULOUS as Gus, or as friendly."

Gus is pictured below with one of his buddies from daycare.

From Dianna about Miika: "Hi Joyce, I just thought I’d let you know Miika is doing good.  She’s such a FUN playful puppy!  We love her to pieces!  Her absolute favorite game is to play ball.  She has a hand-me-down ball with a bell inside it, from our previous Lhasa.  She loves to chase it down the stairs and bring it back up to me so I can throw it back down for her.  She’ll chase it like that 15 or 20 times before getting tired and ignoring her ball.  Such a happy puppy!!…Also, she weighed in at 8.7 lbs today at the vet.  Seems like she might be staying petite."

From Michele about Trinket: "I just love her personality and her incredible disposition.  She is such a sweet addition to my life.  We completed the AKC puppy class complete with graduation.  We are looking forward to another session possibly in January.  She understands the sit and down command quite well but continues to work on the stay command which is extremely important. Treats have an amazing effect on training.  Please note that we visit the groom shop once every 4 weeks plus daily brushing in order to maintain the length of the coat. I loved your new puppy photos and enjoyed seeing the photos of Millie and Pebbles (litter mates). Thank you for all your help and excellent advice!"

A photo of  Trinket

Jim wrote about Daisy: "Didn’t mean to send an update so soon but my sister carved a jack-o-lantern of Daisy. She also is very good about wearing boots when it’s muddy; we often hear passerby’s comments on how cute she is and “look at her boots!”

From Pat: "Hi Joyce,  just a couple of pictures of my kids!  Just before Halloween!  Baron is wearing a small neck tie, and Willow has a small scarf.  Sweet babies!!!!"

From Patricia about Izzy: "I want to tell you how Izzy has made us so happy. She has the sweetest personality and is forever making us laugh. She loves to snuggle. Sleeps snuggled up to me or her Dad. She loves my daughter and grandchildren. Jaxon is 7 and she follows him everywhere. Not to mention how many people have commented on her beauty. I say she comes from Royalty. Thank you, Joyce, you have given us another angel."

From Sally: "I thought you'd get a kick out of Ginger's muddy feet. That is how she looked the other day when I picked her up after work...… she LOVES to dig in the dirt whether it is wet or not. Anyway, as you can imagine it took me a bit to get her cleaned up.
      Thank you for all the information in your blog! I have learned a lot and can relate to especially getting made fun of for buying a pure bred dog. I have never felt the need to apologize.
     Ginger is a wonderful dog~ and on the subject of not liking children, she really only fears them as when we meet them on a trail they don't have good manners when approaching a dog. I also have read your articles on grooming and bought a grooming table. With the help of my groomer we are going to let her hair grow long~ not as long as a show dog but longer as it will be easier to groom. Ginger doesn't love grooming but she is tolerant and it is helping to have a table to work with her."

This is a photo of Jan's Bubbles after a bath.

Cindy sent this photo of her Luther.

Mary sent this photo of her trio of Lhasas. Moka, Rafe, and Belle. Rafe and Belle are Joyslyn's Lhasas.

Lest We Forget

Today we honor all of our veterans and their service to our country and its freedoms.

From the 1897 poem "Recessional" by Rudyard Kipling:

"God of our fathers, known of old,
Lord of our far-flung battle-line,
Beneath whose awful Hand we hold
Dominion over palm and pine—
Lord God of Hosts, be with us yet,
Lest we forget—lest we forget!"

That's it for today. Thanks for reading and thanks to those who sent emails and photos. I love hearing from you and am proud to post your photos to share with others.