Saturday, December 9, 2023

Hectic (No, I Mean HAPPY!) Holidays!


“We are better throughout the year for having, in spirit, become a child again at Christmastime.” 
~ Laura Ingalls Wilder

Well, November passed in a hurry and before I knew it, Thanksgiving descended. We had no company for Thanksgiving and I was not in the mood to make a turkey dinner for just the two of us, so as we did last year, we decided to eat out. Ooops...the joke was on us. The restaurant - all of them - were closed. So we drove home, and Lynn made pasta with arrabiata sauce. It was yummy!

Suddenly, the calendar said it was December and supposed peace and joy of the season became a whirlwind of setting up the Christmas tree, getting Christmas lists from the kids and grandkids, ordering, shopping, wrapping, donating, spending, spending, spending.

But I am pleased to say that the craziness was not as bad as it sounds. I love getting ready for Christmas and having family here to celebrate. All the prep is worth it. And I am happy to say that I'm done shopping and that once a few more items arrive from Amazon and I have them wrapped - ta da. I can relax for a while.

That's a joke. Relax?? We have puppies so relaxing is a bit difficult right now.

Ebony and I were supposed to go to the dog show in Belleville the first weekend in December. I decided not to go. Ebony needs the practice but she was the only class bitch entered and I knew that at least one of the males entered was also not going to be there, so we stayed home. I was also concerned about the new respiratory flu that has been taking the lives of many dogs. Better safe than sorry at this point. More on that later.

Last month I wrote about two Lhasas, a male and a female, that had to be re-homed because their owner was in the nursing home and not expected to live. I went to the boarding kennel where the dogs were housed and picked up the dogs from the owner's friends who had called and advised me of the situation. Fortunately, only a few days later, the dogs were leaving for their new home. I was so glad that their new owner opted to take both of them. At last report, they were settled in and doing well in their new environment.

I thought it was so kind of the new owner to take them both. They had been together since puppyhood.

Here are their pictures. First Willow and then Baron.

 Speaking of puppyhood, here are pictures of our current puppies.

These three were sired by Chance out of Emmy. They were 6 weeks old when the photos were taken. All have been reserved. The one in the middle is the male. The other two are females.

These two were sired by Chance out of Pearl. Age 5 weeks when the pictures were taken. The first is the female. The gold one is a male. They both have also been spoken for.

Autumn and Josh had one puppy, a male. As a singleton puppy and a younger one at that, he is put off by the older puppies and seems to prefer sleeping. He loves his fluffy bed, as do all our other dogs. If your Lhasa does not have one yet, it would make a nice Christmas gift. I have found a good source for the beds at where the prices are quite reasonable and the beds have held up very well in the washer and dryer. (I was warned not to use fabric softener when washing the fluffy beds.)

We also have Deacon, who just turned five months old on the 6th. His sire is Josh and dam is Millie. We are hoping he will be our next show dog. Right now he is a shaggy puppy! His AKC name is Joyslyn's Legacy of the Wind.

So, in the midst of all this, our Russian Blue cat, Boris, died. He was always Lynn's special pet and tolerated me only when (1) Lynn was not around to give him attention, (2) He wanted something and I was the closest human, (3) He knew I would be irked when he sat on my chest while I was reading a book, so he did it as much as possible! He was a beautiful cat and would have been 16 in a few days. We miss him a lot.

Notes and Photos From Others

Thanks to all of you who sent photos of and/or notes about your Joyslyn's Lhasas. I enjoy sharing them on the blog.

Jessie sent this picture of Qat and wrote, "Here is Qat's first haircut.  He looks like a different puppy...He has been a great puppy and is getting along well with the other dogs.  The two young ones play and wrestle all day.
And also this picture of Qat with San, Jessie's other Joyslyn's Lhasa.

From Julie T. who now owns Jenna. "I hope you are well. I purchased Jenna from you in 2020 (I renamed her Linda). She is doing great and I love her so much. She’s a very healthy dog and I feel lucky every day we are together."

Nanda wrote about these photo of Ty and Gigi: "Always chewing on the same toys at the same time. We call it team work ❤️"

Shelly posted this photo of Tucker.

Stacy and Lisa sent Thanksgiving greetings from themselves, Lola (12 years old), and Enzo (age 4).

From the Johnsons: "Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family!! Hope you have a wonderful day filled with blessings. Nick took this picture of Snickers today as that was one of his Christmas presents but the boys caved in LOL!! You and Snickers are our blessing as we love him so much!!

Doreen wrote about Henry: "Here is a handsome fella fresh from the beauty shop wearing his Xmas bandana ❤️. The groomer says Henry has the thickest hair she has ever seen on a Lhasa…he feels like the fur on a stuffed animal. He’s kept some of his red.. it has lightened up. Nightly, he sleeps on my pillow on top of my head 🤓I guess it’s our own version of Daniel Boone. He’s a sweet boy who gives the lightest of kisses-just a soft touch 💋 Hope you and your family have a wonderful holiday.

Gigi wrote, "Thank you so much for sending your blog. I look forward to it and enjoy it every month... I just wanted you to have my baby, Cinder’s picture! She just had her hair done. “Don’t I look pretty in my holiday bling?” She liked it and kept it on for almost a week!

Debby sent this photo of Archie, watching attentively as as she played monopoly with the grandkids. (I crop photos that have children in them. I know my daughter does not want her kids' photos on the internet so I do not put others' kids pictures on the blog.)

Once in a while I get an email and photos that are a "blast from the past" when a puppy buyer from years ago sends me photos and a message about their Joyslyn's Lhasa. This came from Tom and Penny: "Joyce, greetings from Griffin on his 12th birthday.  Following are some recent pictures. Griffin has been a wonderful boy, a treasure for Penny and me.  We have taken very good care of him. He is still handsome and has never been sick.  You had him for his first three months and we believe your initial care for him contributed to his good health. We are very thankful to you. Tom and Penny."

Another "blast from the past" from Kyle and Trish, who  wrote about Fin: "It has been way too long since we sent you an update on Fin, he will be 10 in January and we wanted to send along a note and some recent pictures! ... we’ve moved from our condo in Chicago to a house in the suburbs... Fin loves having a yard to run around in and guard. It’s hard to overstate how much we’ve loved having Fin as a member of the family. He’s just as protective as he was several years ago, when he would plop down next to the kids as newborns. He has a real talent for snuggling up to your lap or leg (really anywhere) to steal a few pets or rubs...he is a great companion in the office on work from home days."

Michelle posted pictures of her Sunny, celebrating birthday #4!! Here is one of them.

Lisa wrote about Duncan, "His personality is confident (indoors at least), playful and at times — stubborn.  He continues to be increasingly affectionate, climbing into my lap for some attention. I have been trying to curb his desire to play his latest “game” of throwing his toys or treats off sofas and beds on purpose so I will have to pick them up and return them to him. Hard to believe this time last year I was getting ready to make the 8 hour drive to adopt Duncan. I already cannot imagine life without my little “dark haired warrior.”

Mary R  sent Christmas greetings from MN and these photos of her three Lhasas. Rafe (middle) and Belle (right) are her Joyslyn's Lhasas. Rafe stills holds a special place in my heart. He and I had some wonderful times together at the shows.

Judy G wrote about Winter: "she is loving the cold weather and running through the leaves. with Nyx. We have Rally class tonight as we are preparing to test for Virtual Intermediate. The vet said that Hobart Vet has not seen any of the new strain of respiratory problems. That's good to know but I have cancelled Nyx's December trial.  With 3 senior dogs in the household I need to be careful. The head vet from Purdue  Emergency in Westville said that they had 2 cases of young dogs and one passed away. She trains in agility with Nyx."

And that brings us to the next topic: 

The Latest Health Concern for Our Dogs

A new respiratory strain is killing many dogs in the US and Canada. Information about a fairly new canine respiratory disease is all over the place. I listened to a webinar and the vets on the panel seemed to downplay the problem as if it were not a problem. They blamed the media for the hype about the illness.

One article I read recommended getting your dog to the vet ASAP as soon as symptoms were evident. Great idea. But in many towns and cities it is nearly impossible to get an appointment at a vet clinic unless you schedule well in advance. Emergency clinics cost a fortune.

AKC posted this information:

Here are two links to articles about the illness if you want to read more about it.

It is a time to be sensible and take precautions about going to dog parks, letting dogs sniff hello to other dogs on walks, etc.

So while I am looking forward to 2024 and going to dog shows again, I also am hoping that going to shows does not cause harm to my dogs. They are more important than champion titles and ribbons.

What I Do to Relax
I don't want you all to think that I am all about Lhasa 24/7, although it often seems that way to me, especially when we have puppies.

My favorite way to relax is to pick up a good book. I have been an avid reader since I learned how to read many many years ago. My usual preferences are mysteries, detective stories, maybe a light romance or historical romance once in a while to lighten things up. I also enjoy fantasy fiction. My daughter recently convinced me to start reading the seven-volume Throne of Glass series by Sarah Maas. I just started book 7 and, although I really want to know how the saga ends, I sort of dread the end because I have grown fond of the characters. Why am I telling you this? I don't know! 

A Good Thing For My Husband

Many of you are aware that my husband Lynn, besides being a huge help with the grooming and care of our Lhasas, is both an award-winning playwright and an author of an award-winning detective mystery series featuring a Chicago detective, Joe Erickson. The series is gaining popularity, and his next book will be out in the spring. He is currently working on one for 2025 release.

So, yes a bit of a brag here. He was recently interviewed for a publication in the UK and, after I read it, I asked him if I should go get a tape measure to see if his head had grown any bigger! Here is a link to the interview, in case anyone is interested in reading it and perhaps becoming a Joe Erickson fan. Hmmm...maybe put one of his books on your Christmas list! (Over the years, I have managed to get him to mention a Lhasa in the books.) 

And with that I will bid you farewell for 2023! May you have a wonderful holiday season whichever holiday is yours to celebrate.

Always remember:


"The story of Christmas is the story of God's relentless love for us." ~Max Lucado

Saturday, November 11, 2023

So Much To Be Thankful For


Halloween has come and gone. I am glad. It was never my favorite holiday. As a child I was always disappointed that my costume did not turn out the way I expected (although the neighbors were still generous with the treats.) I fondly remember the houses where a kid could get a full-size Snickers bar or a popcorn ball, or a caramel apple. As a mom, I dealt with kids who loved Halloween and wanted to go all out -- and they did! We had costume disasters, kids' meltdowns, parental meltdowns, too much sugar...I confess to raiding their bags for Snickers. Now it is easy for me to be a Halloween Scrooge because we live in a neighborhood that has no young children.

Can You Help?
I think every dog owner has bad dreams about what might happen to the dogs if they (the owner) died, became too ill to take care of the dogs. We tend to think that "My kids will take the dog," "My friend loves my dog. She will take him," "The breeder will take her back." But does that always happen? No! Often the dogs end up in a shelter and, if they are too old for someone to adopt, they end up euthanized.

We like to think that we'll outlive our dogs, but age has nothing to do with the problem. Anyone at any age can become ill and die, be killed in a car accident, get shot by some idiot with a gun. Where does that leave your dog? Here is a link that might help you plan for your dog's future should you be unable to care for him/her.

All this leads up to why I am asking for help. Those of you who own Joyslyn's Lhasas know that the sales agreement says I will take a dog back if something happens that its owner can no longer care for it. That will work for now, until I am too old to take in other's dogs!

I recently received a phone call telling me that a person who owns and loves her two Joyslyn Lhasas has fallen, hit her head, and, as a result, has brain damage and is now in a nursing home. A friend of hers called me and asked me to take the dogs. They will be coming to me sometime next week after having spent the last two weeks in a kennel at the vet's office.

I will be looking for homes or a home for them. Both are just 5 years old. There is a female born 3/21/18, sired by GCH Joyslyn's Inherit the Wind (Rafe) out of CH Joyslyn's Heart Song (Kimmi).  The male was born 7/9/18 and was sired by CH Joyslyn's Moon Shadows out of CH Joyslyn MLS Dakota Je-Na Sais Quoi.

If you or someone you know can open heart and home to one or both of these Lhasas, please get in touch with me at or 309-837-1665.

Thanks in advance for any help you can give.

(P.S. If you call, please leave a message. If we are home we will pick up the phone as you begin your message. We had to give up answering the phone because we have been getting as many as 12 robo calls each day! Disgusting!!)

Puppy Announcement
I am pleased to announce that the end of October brought us a "Treat." We have puppies! I admit that things were stressful for the first two weeks. I guess that was the "Trick" part, and it was not a nice trick either. But all is well at last, and the babies are nursing well and growing. Their moms are taking good care of them. I'll post pictures next month.

In the midst of taking care of new moms with their new puppies, I have been busy raising and training our new puppy, Deacon, who was born in July. His parents are Josh and Millie. Here is a picture of Deacon. Evidently, he was bored and needed an outlet for his energy! See the innocent look on his face!

Deacon likes to chew on my shoes. I have since learned to pick them up and put them away! He is also hearing "no bite" frequently as he has a habit of giving soft kisses that often turn into little nips. 

Here is a link that offers advice to those of us whose dogs are teething. Bitter Apple is product that is helpful for discouraging/stopping a puppy from chewing on items that you don't want gnawed.

One of the funniest photos I have received from a puppy buyer was a picture of a beautiful dining room table whose legs were sitting in colorful plastic buckets. No explanation necessary! Actually, that was a great idea for protecting such a lovely table.

Here is a depiction of how I perceive my life lately. And I know that most of you who are reading this probably feel the same!

Our beautiful Archie has a new home. He now lives in Indiana with some great people who are spoiling him (in a good way). He gets to sleep on their bed too. Here are a couple photos of him.

Before the haircut, standing in the driveway with the wind blowing through his hair.

This one is after his first haircut. He is so, so darn cute. And I imagine he feels "free" having all that heavy coat gone.

We also had Rusty here as a guest for a few days while he was recovering from his neutering procedure. He was not happy with the cone! I think he blamed me because he was really happy to see Paul and Pam when they came back to pick him up. He also gets to sleep in their bed with the other 2 Lhasas.

Notes and Photos from Others
Many of you have told me that you enjoy the photos I post of the Joyslyn's Lhasas that their owners have sent to me. I love getting the pictures and enjoy the comments people send about their dogs. I always enjoy sharing them with my readers.

Lisa sent this picture of her Duncan sporting his soft "cone" following his neutering surgery. Lisa wrote that her other Lhasa, Dresden tried to get Duncan to play and when he did not want to play. "Dresden then laid down on a dog bed. Duncan went and scooted up to the back side of the dog bed as close as he could get to Dresden. Dresden is keeping a close eye on his little brother. He realizes he is healing from something. It is amazing the bond between these two..."

We all know that our Lhasas each have their own quirks and personalities. Some are serious, some are clowns, some are so smart it is scary, some are fearless, some are big babies.
In a later message, Lisa wrote this about Duncan: "It is official - Duncan watches tv just like my first Lhasa Apso “Alex” that I got in 2000. Duncan places his front paws over the rolled arm of the sectional sofa to face the tv. 
However, unlike any other dog I have had, Duncan reacts to musical scores on tv. When the music is playing for a suspenseful or spooky scene, Duncan definitely responds! When the opening credits of Edward Scissorhands was playing, Duncan jumped caddy corner on the sectional sofa to land between me and his big brother Dresden. Duncan was sitting upright, staring straight ahead at the tv the whole time - as if to say I don’t know what is about to happen next but I want to be between the two of you when it does!"

LOL cracked me up!!

Nanda wrote about Gigi, "Gigi is almost a year old now. Time flies. She is the sweetest puppy God has ever put on this earth. She’s super happy too. She thinks she’s older than Ty and she bosses him around. We adore her. Thank you for this wonderful gift you have given to our family."

Nanda also had this to say about Ty, "I can’t describe in words how much we love him! He's filthy from running on grandma’s backyard but still the most handsome dog ever. Pure beauty ❤️"

Sally sent pictures of Ginger and Jaxon and wrote, "Hi Joyce! I loved your blog- it was perfect timing talking about Lhasa love. I was sick most of the week and Ginger and Jaxon either laid right beside me or on top of me most of the time 😄 I'm not normally lying on the couch so they weren't quite sure what was going on. Everyone should have at least 2 Joyslyn's Lhasas! They made me feel much better.

On the subject of the drama trauma - it's a life saver. We had a big afternoon thunderstorm last week and normally Ginger would go under a bed or in the basement. But! I sprayed some and put a little on her ears and she curled up in her favorite bed in the living room instead! It's fantastic!"

Here is a picture of Rebecca's Corso. He is Archie's litter brother.

The Johnsons sent this picture of Snickers and wrote: "
We just love watching your posts. Snickers just loves his toys. Collin bought these 3 small bones that squeak and Snickers didn’t want any of us to grab them while we were playing with him.  So he grab all three in his mouth.  LOL  We all laughed so hard. He is just the most amazing dog!!  He always makes us smile and laugh.  He is so loving ❤️and going to be 11 this December but you would never know it. He keeps us young."

Hiam and Sheri wrote to tell me their Teddy passed away. They wrote, "We had a very loving dog for the last 17 1/2 years and were fortunate to have him, thank you." 

Raquel sent this photo of Minnie and also a video of her running at full speed down the stairs to retrieve a toy. Maybe Raquel should rename her "Flash!"

Judy G wrote about Winter's new title (Rally Novice). Winter is one of the retired adults Judy bought from us. Now Winter (thanks to Judy) has a title at the back of her name as well as the front! CH Joyslyn Mon Ami Winter Wind, RN 
Judy wrote, "We just got home from 2 Rally Trials in LaPorte, and Winter now has an RN title after her name. There are 40 rally novice obstacles and she can do 37 of them. So in the first trial there were 2 that she doesn't do well. So 20 points off and I had one point off for a tight lease. She scored 79 and received 4th place. In the second trial there were different obstacles and she scored 96 and received first place.!
I can't believe that in 8 months she has earned a rally title. She loves to go to class!
Love from Winter and appreciation from me. She is perfect!"

Then a few weeks later Judy wrote, "Winter and Nyx completed the 5K to earn a Turkey Trot fun medallion from AKC  Fit Dog. Ty needs another 3/4 of a mile before Thanksgiving to earn his medallion. Winter will ready to virtual test in Rally Intermediate during the holidays. She is a little show off in the ring. She prances and dances through the courses. She is a one in a million!!"

LaVonne sent this picture taken of the beautiful Misti at the 2023 ALAC Regional Specialty. Misti, shown as a veteran, was given an Award of Merit. Misti is the mom of Judy G's Winter. Misti is co-owned by LaVonne Bennett and me. AKC knows Misti as GCH CH Mon Ami 'N Joyslyn Shades of Summer. 

Judy L posted Halloween pictures of Gus and Lippy. She wrote, "Gusto Spitz and Lippy Maverick Jones participated in Boo Barn Ranch’s Halloween Extravaganza. Gus was a ‘King Bee’ and Lippy was a T-Rex. Lippy was supposed to be a ‘Kissing Booth’ but he kept removing his costume. Back up costume switcharoo! Gus tied for 1st Place in ‘Cutest Costume.’ You can’t see much of his costume in this photo, but he was danged cute!"

Julie sent this photo of Bekka and wrote that "She is doing fine and we love her a lot." 

 Just as an aside, Bekka is Ty and Gigi's mom. Can you tell?

Jim sent this picture of Daisy and remarked, "She sort of looks like one of the baby's rockers."

The Holidays - Some Advice
The holiday season can be a joyful one, but those of us with dogs need to be extra cautious about what our dogs eat, whether we purposefully feed them something as a "treat" that they really should not eat or if they manage to snag some food that was accidentally dropped during food preparation.

Here is an article that offers helpful advice about foods that we should not be feeding the dogs anytime.

Yes, the end-of-year Holidays will soon be upon us. We'll all be super plate-spinners during those holidays as we plan, prepare, put the plan into action! Let's keep in mind why and what we are celebrating and not let the craziness take away from the purpose of Thanksgiving. 

Why do we need a day to remind us to be thankful? I think it is because setting a day aside does serve to remind us to stop and count our blessings.

Even when things don't go the way we want them to go or think they should have gone, we have to look on the bright side and find something -- even one small thing -- to be thankful for and not let despair take over our thoughts and actions.

Just so you know, I give thanks for all of you who have trusted my husband and me to provide you with your beloved Lhasa Apso. Some of you were on a waiting list for a long time, but you stuck with me and waited. I am so glad to have met so many nice people over the years as they have come into my life because of the Lhasas. God has blessed me in that way and I am grateful.

And now, I think I will take a tip from these two and go chill out for a while...

Thanks for reading to the end!

Have a Great Thanksgiving!


Joyslyn's Lhasa Apsos is dedicated to raising happy, healthy, loving Lhasa pets and show prospects that conform to AKC's standard.