Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Celebrating 11 Years of FiveSibes Blogging!

Wow! And in the language of Siberian Huskies, "Wooooo!" Today, we mark 11 years of blogging here at FiveSibes! It all began with my beautiful pack of five Siberian Huskies, hence the name FiveSibes - our first and the alpha queen herself, Harley; my sweet wooly Epi-boy Gibson, and our five littermates, the "Pupsters Wolfgang, Chloe, and Bandit! As a career writer, I took the plunge in February of 2010 and posted my very first blog article on Pet Dental Health Month featuring our alph queen, Harley, and her pearly whites!

Very First FiveSibes Blog Post!


When I first embarked upon writing this blog and writing about daily life shared with my beloved FiveSibes, as well as all things canine, never did I imagine I would be doing for more than a decade! I also never thought I'd be writing this - our 11th Blogiversary - with only one of my original (OG) pack remaining, my boy Wolfie. While this has been an amazing journey, it is hard to believe that the heydays of FiveSibes being part of my family is over, and we are now a pack of one Sibe. But I choose to look at this wonderful anniversary, although very bittersweet, as a celebration of wonderment, love, learning, and caring. I have learned much from raising these gorgeous dogs from puppyhood, and even more when we took on three littermates.

While my blogging has taken a break with each passing of a Sibe, Wolfie and I will still be blogging on! This blog, I always refer to as "our" meaning my Huskies and mine because without them, there would be no FiveSibes blog. Over the years it has grown to include my not only aspects of our journey over the years together and the fun and zany things Huskies can do, it has also become a reliable source of info for the Siberian Husky breed, rescues, and information about Canine Epilepsy after my Gibson was struck with seizures at age three. I hope over the years, we have shared our love and information, as well as some tears with each of you. We have come to know so many fellow Blogvillers, and have shared in the happiness of occasions as well as tears for losses of furfriends across the miles over the years. I cherish each and every friendship I have made here, and hope these relationships last long past our blogging term because that would make our beloved dogs (and cats) whom we all blog about very happy.

The producer of my podcast, "The Sibe Vibe" on Dog Works Radio once asked me on air about the name FiveSibes. He asked me what happens when one day I do not have five anymore, or if I chose to add more. At the time, I had all young Huskies running about, it was hard for me to even imagine not having any of them any more and much easier thinking about adding more, although five was definitely enough! So it was a very good question - especially since I have FiveSibes tattooed forever on my arm (a gift from my daughter). I had to think about it for a moment, and then I said no matter if I have five, four, three, two, one, none, or a dozen, we will always be the FiveSibes because they were the originals, who kicked off this journey with me. Fast forward some 15 years later, and I can say my answer still holds true. We will always be the FiveSibes, I will always be the FiveSibesMom, hence our hashtag #ForeverFiveSibes. To me, whether I get more or not, the OG FiveSibes pack will always be THE FiveSibes in my heart, in my life, online, and on paper. 

I would like to say a special "Thank You" to each and everyone of you--my readers and fellow bloggers who have become friends over the years, for without your support of my blog by reading and sharing, there really wouldn't be a blog! So a heartfelt thanks from me to each of you for making reaching this amazing milestone a reality!

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Tuesday, January 19, 2021

Happy Birthday to Pupster, Wolfie! And a Gift of Snow from Furangel Pupsters Bandit & Chloe


Wolfie is a teenager!
Woo! Today is our Pupsters' birthday! Wolfie turns 13! It's a bittersweet day as it is wonderful to celebrate our boy Wolf becoming a "teenager"...we certainly miss his two sisters, littermates Bandit and Chloe. This birthday gone as all the chaos and excitement of three Huskies sharing the same birthdate together since they were pups! Oh, those crazy fun-filled birthdays! But I am happy my boy is here sharing this special day. It was much quieter, but ice cream cake time still brings the same excitement as it always has with all three.

My grandson, Wolf's human brother and best buddy, excitedly helped me prepare the ice cream cake! 
Then, when the cake was ready, my grandson sang "Happy Birthday, Wolfie" as he brought him his treat! Oh, how this touched my heart. Seeing their bond is something truly special and has certainly helped Wolf heal from his loss of his sisters.
Wolfie and I also took a nice walk and played out on the deck...and you know how I talk about signs from our loved ones? Well, right on cue as I left Wolf out on the deck in the morning, a soft snow began to fall for about 15 minutes. A gift to Wolf from Chloe and Bandit? A sign that they having birthday zoomies north of the Rainbow Bridge with Harley and Gibson and stopped by for their birthday? Either way, it truly is a gift from above and let's us know that our loved ones are never far away.
Woo! Mom, do you see this?
It's snow!!!

Woooo! Thank you, Bandit and Chloe 
for the sign! 
Happy Birthday to you both, too. 
I miss youuuuuuu! #PupstersForever!

Happy Birthday to my sweet boy, Wolfie. While you may be in your golden years, you are always my baby boy. 
And Happy Birthday at the Rainbow Bridge to my other two pupsters, Bandit and Chloe. Your sign of falling snow assures us that you are indeed celebrating with snow zoomies and always walk by your brother, Wolfie's side. You both are missed very much. Hope there is ice cream cake where you are!
 Bonds of Love Can Never Be Broken 
Through Space nor Time
What do you think? Do you believe fellow pupsters Chloe and Bandit sent the snow as a sign?
A Fond look back at past Pupsters' Birthdays:
The Pupsters' very first birthday!

 When they were just wee Pupsters! 
How cute they were!

Celebrating birthdays FiveSibes style in the good ol' days!
The last birthday the three Pupsters' celebrated together: 

Sunday, January 17, 2021

And Then There Was Only One...How's Wolfie?

One sure is a lonely number. When you have spent a portion of your lifetime with five, fun-loving, crazy, rambunctious, howling Siberian Huskies who loved being together every day, you know somewhere in the back of your mind that having five all around the same age--three of them littermates, so three who are the same age--one day down the road, heartbreak was waiting; times five. We are now at four angels, with just one Pupster left, Wolfgang. Dear, sweet, beta-to-the-max Wolfie. Losing Bandit, a definite alpha and boss girl, so suddenly has left our dear sweet baby boy a mess. Being the last Husky standing sucks for him. While I stepped up going for walks and getting in lots of extra hugs and chats, I am not his sister Bandit. I am not his other sister Chloe. I am not his "momma" Harley, and I am not his big bro Gibson. And Wolfie misses snuggling with his pack family. Since September of last year, it has been just him and Bandit. They made the move with us and adjusted so well. They enjoyed exploring our new area together, meeting the new neighbors and their children and dogs. We've had good times just sitting around our backyard campfires together. Eating together. Playing together. And them two sleeping together. 

Now Wolfie is alone. And I am FiveSibesMom of one.

Wolfie has suffered from anxiety issues since he was a young Husky. He came out of surgery for a torn CCL, and the medications made him so loopy, he was never quite the same after for him. That is when he started with crate anxiety, severe separation anxiety, and in later years, a form of Sundowners he has to this day. Over the years, and with the help mostly of his furry mates, he thankfully overcame the separation anxiety. We ditched the crates for all of them (all of them except Wolf loved their crates) and they had their own bedroom to snuggle together in, so that was no longer a worry. But, now in the wake of Bandit's passing, anything can or has made his anxiety come back and come back hard, on top of grieving. And, yes, he is grieving. Dogs most certainly do grieve. I saw it with Harley when Gibson passed, and although they missed Chloe when she passed, they still each other for comfort. But now that it is just one, it is tough for my very sensitive boy...heartbreaking, and just plain sucks.


Wolfie is a lover. He loves his family, especially the toddlers! He adores my grandson; they are best buds! And he loves to woooo to him and my one-year-old granddaughter, who woos back to him! Wolfie loves people to pet him and he loves to see other dogs, but will never ever tug, pull, or try to rip my arm off. He has such wonderful social manners. My pupster is now an old man, I guess. I mean he will turning 13 in a few days! So, he and I are well matched; we both are now seniors and walk at a very leisurely pace. While I am so thankful he is here with me, this birthday will be so bittersweet for his siblings will not be part of the celebration. Oh, all the fun times we had celebrating the Pupsters' birthday together. But, as with life, changes comes and we adjust; we must, while always being thankful for what we had.

 Losing Bandit so suddenly was definitely a shock. Back in May she had surgery to remove a huge growth in her mouth and her recovery went so well. She was our healthy dog. A feisty, smart, survivor. Having her suddenly taken from us from a sneaky, crappy, rotten bleeding spleen tumor, hemangiosarcoma, was a shock. The same rotten cancer that stole Gibson from us five years ago. I know I am not alone in losing a beloved dog or two to this horrid disease, and it seems so many of our dogs are taken down by it. I can only hope that one day there will exist a way of detecting it early, and saving them. For Bandit, she did not suffer like Gibson did. She went out in true Bandit style, enjoying the snow, and then having family hold her as she peacefully went to sleep. It all still makes me cry.

So many of you have checked in on us to see how Wolf has been doing, and we are so thankful to you for that. It's so heartwarming to hear and read all the amazing letters, posts, and comments of support at our loss once again, and for the genuine care and concern for Wolf. It's now been almost three months since our dear Bandit suddenly left us and I believe that finally Wolfie's grief is lifting. He is adjusting to being the only dog. While there is sadness, there is also a perk...he gets all of the attention and twice (or four times total) the amount of kisses from me. It may sound strange, but we have "talks" - mainly I'm talking and he is listening, and occasionally woos back. When I am out, the hello I get upon my return is equivalent to fireworks on the Fourth of July - he is very verbal and so excited that I am home! (I absolutely love it! Not everyone in my house shares that love of a Husky's vocalness, but his momma appreciates it and welcomes it)! 

Wolfie having his "woo" back is big. My FiveSibes were big wooeers...breaking out in howls many times a day, with one caveat--Harley had to be the first to start. The Pupsters would all stand by her and give a little woo or a bark (yes, Huskies can bark, they just don't care to!) until Harley started them off in singing. So when we lost both Chloe and Harley last summer, Wolfie lost his woo. So did Bandit, actually, but she always was on the quiet side. So, Wolf wooing is huge! And my heart swells when he does.

Losing healthy Bandit so suddenly really worried me so I had our vet come and give Wolf a good once over to be sure he was grieving, and not having something sneaking up on him. Thankfully, he seems okay. But, at almost 13, I am aware that is for now. He has had anxiety issues and gastrointestinal issues his whole life, and is going through some bad anxiety and IBS right now as a matter of fact. So sometimes I have to really figure out what is going on with him. The vet will be doing follow-up bloodwork just to check on his liver issues again (he is on meds, and his sister Chloe passed suddenly from acute liver disease that didn't even show up in her annual physical). I know my "pupster" is really in his golden years and has some increasing mental and physical health issues, but I just pray I have him healthy for a long time to come.

So, we are okay, Wolfgang and I. Sort of. All things considering. We are enjoying each other's company and our new routine now is pretty down pat. And, we are taking it day by day. Dogs really are resilient. Way more so than humans, I think. They grieve like us (and if anyone ever says they don't, they don't know what they are talking about). They need us, and they trust us to help them move through it and forward. So we can not ever let them down. And then suddenly, they perk up, move on, and enjoy the life ahead. Such a valuable lesson for us humans. As long at the dawn breaks, we have many blessings to count and be grateful for. Somehow, in their infinite and quiet wisdom, dogs know this.

It's time for Wolfie and I to get back to blogging! It may be slow, and it may not be as often as in the past, but we will be back. My heart is still only partially healed, a hurt that I know will never fully go away after losing four of my furbabies and knowing Wolfie has some chronic health issues and is in his golden years, but sharing life - the fantastic and the heartbreak - with FiveSibes, whether five, four, two, or one, has always been a blessing and a real joy for me. And there is much more Wolfie and I can share, even in these strange pandemic times. With loving our dogs and navigating life with Covid, we are truly all in this together to lean on, to cheer on, to cry with, to support, and to hopefully share some joy.

Thank you all for sticking with us, supporting us, and truly being our caring friends. Blogville has always been a wonderful neighborhood, and we are proud to be part of it.

We will restart our #FiveSibes #FlashbackFriday Blog Hop again soon to share fun and memorable times from over the past years. When we do, I sure hope to see you then on the hop!

Always and Forever the FiveSibesMom

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Wednesday, January 6, 2021

Remembering Gibson on His Birthday



Today is a special date—my furangel Gibson’s birthday. I’ve been thinking a lot about of my very special boy, Gibson—my heart dog—on what would be his 15th Birthday (unbelievably his sixth birthday north of the Rainbow Bridge). This amazing dog inspired me, and so many others, with his zest for life, and his determination and grit to overcome so many health obstacles along his journey with Canine Epilepsy. Diagnosed shortly after his third birthday, Gibson never let having #epilepsy keep him down! He enjoyed so many things—he just loved life! He loved spending his days with the rest of our #FiveSibes pack: his true love Harley (who he was smitten with from the moment he came home and met her!), and younger siblings Wolfie, Chloe, and Bandit. He was their big fluffy pillow they loved to all spoon around! Gib also had a great sense of humor! He was truly a beautiful “old soul” and if you’ve followed my blog, my spirit animal for sure.


Gibson’s journey inspired me to do extensive research on Canine Epilepsy and become my own expert in order to help him live the best life possible. I met amazing veterinarian experts and fellow Epi-dog parents along the way, leading me to write two books and many articles and blog posts about him and dogs living with #CanineEpilepsy. He also inspired me to become an ambassador for Purple Day for Epilepsy and The Wally Foundation~Canine Epilepsy, bringing awareness and resources to others who have dogs with epilepsy.


Gibson’s beautiful face starred on national magazine covers, featured in newspaper articles, online blogs, and Ezines.  He was the face behind two different dog treats—Gibbie Snacks through House Wolf and later after House Wolf closed, Gib Nibs through Sassy’s Goodies, with donations from both benefitting Canine Epilepsy foundations. Gib inspired me to launch the #LiveGibStrong #K9Epilepsy educational campaign, and most recently the #Paws4Purple campaign with The Anita Kaufmann Foundation and Purple Day Every Day to continue to bring resources, information, and support to Epi-dog caregivers worldwide in his name so that folks know a) a dog with the diagnosis of epilepsy does not need to be euthanized, b) caregivers are not alone, and c) help to maneuver this journey is just a keyboard click away.


Gibson accomplished so much in his almost ten years!


Even after he became a furangel, the work continues in his name. Most recently, his beautiful image created by artist Cameo Anderson, highlights a poster I created with vet consultation, to show how to cool down an Epi-dog before, during, and after a seizure.

In the end, Gibson beat the seizure monster—through all the ups and downs and back ups on his journey, with his care management plan and medication he lived his last seven years seizure free!


He will forever be my spirit guide and my heart dog, that very special dog that comes along and resides within one forevermore.


Dear Gibson, 
Happy Birthday, my big beautiful fluffy boy. I hope you are having wonderful birthday snow zoomies north of the Rainbow Bridge with Harley, Chloe, and Bandit. I hope they have your favorite vanilla ice cream cake up there! Your little bro Wolfie is with me, and we are adjusting to life without all of you, a difficult feat. 
I love you my beautiful G-man. Forever and always.



Dear Readers:
We'll be back from our blogging break soon, but today was another special day. As you know, Wolfie and I needed time to mourn the sudden loss of his sister Bandit in October and we are trying to adjust to yet another new "normal" in these very unnormal times.  I look forward to once again sharing stories and our #FlashbackFriday and #WaitingWednesday Blog Hops with you all once again! Thank you all for your patience and for all your love and support during these trying times.  ~FiveSibesMom

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Friday, December 25, 2020

Merry Christmas and Happy, Healthy Howlidays

 Wolfie and Santa wishing everyone a happy, healthy, and Merry Christmas!

Although this year has been so very different for so many, and us with the unexpected loss of our girl Bandit, we are sending all good wishes and positive vibes out into the world for a happy and healthy holiday season and look forward to welcoming in 2021 with hopes of a healthier happier world for all. 


Christmas Eve

Christmas Eve saw Wolfie waiting for Santa to come fill his stocking that was hung by the chimney with care!


Snow for a Snow Dog!

We were lucky we had lots of snow this year! Wolfie was out looking for Santa Paws' reindeer tracks!


A Fond FiveSibes Flashback to Santa's Visit! 

What a fun day this was and now a cherished memory!



Dear Readers:

We'll be back from our blogging break in the New Year. Wolfie and I needed time to mourn the loss of his sister Bandit and adjust to yet another new "normal" in these very unnormal times.  I look forward to sharing #FlashbackFriday and #WaitingWednesday Blog Hops with you all once again! ~FiveSibesMom

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Monday, December 21, 2020

Winter Solstice 2020: Remembering Our Beloved Four #FiveSibes


Fondly missing and remembering our beautiful Gibson, Harley, Chloe, and Bandit. Forever in our hearts.

A candle is lit for our beloved Harley, Gibson, Chloe, and Bandit, as well as all Siberian Huskies who have journeyed north of the Rainbow Bridge.

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Wednesday, December 16, 2020

Gibson's 5th Rainbow Bridge Anniversary

Five years...my how surreal time is...five years ago today my beautiful heart dog, Gibson, earned his wings. He was my spirit guide, my soul dog. He just understood and knew things. He never let Canine Epilepsy keep him down or dull his zest for life. In the end, he beat the seizure monster for seven years! He was truly an inspirational dog, and I miss him every single day. Gibson was a very special canine and I was so lucky he was mine! I know he is with his true love, Harley, and younger siblings Chloe and Bandit, having fun zoomies together in those forever snowy fields, north of the Rainbow Bridge. He will be sending me and little bro Wolfie some snow (maybe a lot!) later today on his Rainbow Bridge date. Love you and miss you, Gibbie, my big fluffy boy, forever and always. #LiveGibStrongForever, my sweet, silly, beautiful G.