The Czar regrets his recent absence on the site, but he has been traveling for hundreds of miles, and dealing with sickness. Unfortunately, both these instances happened at the same time when the Царевич brought home something (curse you, school science fairs and your four or five identical exhibits on common household molds made worse by indifference). Within two days, the Цесаревич got it, and then the Czar came down heavy with it.Most of you remember the happy day we rescued little Sally, the time she made Muscovy history, and the sad day we lost her to cancer. A lot of you readers are clearly dog fanatics, which is good. If you ever run through the back of the Castle grounds, our borzois will take favorable note of your awe.
Thursday, as the Czar suffered with a 138° fever and something suspiciously like tuberculosis, we received a message that a dog had become available and that we would be the ideal family for her, given that we have an excellent track record with rehabilitating terrified animals into outgoing, happy family pets.
Indeed, on Sunday evening, we were able to take home little Jasmine. She turns 7 months old on April 1st, and comes with a whole book of international stamps and licenses. Jasmine was rescued off the streets of Beirut, and was identified as a Lebanese shepherd, which doesn’t seem to exist outside of somebody’s imagination. Google that and you get pictures of unwashed, scruffy-looking men with beards and sheep. She looks like a saluki with Anatolian shepherd markings, though.
She’s been doing exactly what you expect a dog to do in a new homeshe went from room to room sniffing everything, exploring an inch at a time. She has already become quite attached to the boys, and has taken possession of her new bed and toys (pictured). She cried for about ten minutes last night when the lights went out, but if you’ve ever been through the First Night with a puppy, you know that’s like ten minutes with your head in a bucket of lava. Fortunately, she cried herself to sleepuntil about 20 minutes later when the Czar coughed up his own pericardium, and she woke up and cried for another 10 minutes.She hasn’t wet the floor (yet), but like many pups is very distracted when taken outside. It’s so hard to concentrate on things like pooping when there’s birds, and leaves, and twigs, and passing cars to suddenly stop and stare at. The entire world is new to her, and she’s been through a lot just to make it this far.
Jasmine received her name over in Beirut, and even though she doesn’t seem to know it yet, we have elected to keep it because it obeys the generally good practice of giving dogs a two-syllable trochee name, is geographically correct, and lends itself well to the obvious Jazzy nickname. She’ll probably learn her name in the next two weeks though, as the boys are very careful to say it a lot when talking to her.
Smart? Well, so far, so good. She’s curious, and her propensity to stare makes her prone to keen observation. The Czar, who likes smart dogs who understand all sorts of commands, is big on training and sees a lot of potential here. She’s also quite hungry and food-motivated, meaning a half-hour and a handful of treats can get her doing all sorts of things.
She’s also very soft, and likes to cuddle. This is important to the Царица, of course, and not to the Czar, who really doesn’t mind either way if a dog snuggles up on a cold night to watch the Blackhawks on television, and kind of burrows her butt into your side to make sure you’re warm. Really, this sort of thing is not that important to us. Even when she whips her head around to make sure you’re still awake, and then dab her tongue on your cheek to make certain you know she appreciates you. Not important at all.
Божію Поспѣшествующею Милостію Мы, Дима Грозный Императоръ и Самодержецъ Всероссiйскiй, цѣсарь Московскiй. The Czar was born in the steppes of Russia in 1267, and was cheated out of total control of all Russia upon the death of Boris Mikhailovich, who replaced Alexander Yaroslav Nevsky in 1263. However, in 1283, our Czar was passed over due to a clerical error and the rule of all Russia went to his second cousin Daniil (Даниил Александрович), whom Czar still resents. As a half-hearted apology, the Czar was awarded control over Muscovy, inconveniently located 5,000 miles away just outside Chicago. He now spends his time seething about this and writing about other stuff that bothers him.