Categories
Photos

The Leonberger at the Mountain Top

We are visiting Sweden, specifically the High Coast. I am originally from here. This is a beautiful area with fjords, mountains and forests. We took a ski lift up to the top of a mountain called Skule Berget/Mountain. At the top there is a cabin that’s open for tourists.  You can also walk up the mountain on a steep long trail. In addition to visiting the cabin and watching the views from the mountain top we climbed down a cliff to visit a cave and after our visit we walked down the trail. It was a day filled with exercise. However, the highlight of the day was that we met a Leonberger, Amie, and her owner at the top of mountain.

Amie a female Leonberger at the Skule mountain top.
Amie at the top of the Skule Mountain.

We shouted, “look a Leonberger”, and Amie started wagging her tail and running towards us. She obviously loved attention. Her owner let us pet her and take a few photos of her. Amie was very playful, she rolled around and wanted to be petted. She was very friendly. She reminded us of our late Leonberger Bronco, but being a female she was a little bit smaller and more feminine looking.

Photo of Amie, a female Leonberger. She was playful but well behaved.
Amie was playful but very well behaved.

Amie is nine years old, which is old for a Leonberger. We were impressed that she walked all the way up to the mountain top.

Photo of view over the High Coast in Sweden
View from the Skule Mountain top
Photo of the cabin at the Skule mountain top
The cabin at the Skule mountain top
Photo of us walking back down from the Skule mountain
We are walking back down

Finally, I would like to promote my book about Bronco and Leonbergers. It has a lot of color photos, amusing Leonberger stories, and Leonberger information that has been verified and it is also based on personal information.

Photo of the book "The Life and Times of Le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle". Click on the image to go to the Amazon.com location for the book.
This is the front cover of the book “The Life and Times of Le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle”. Click on the image to go to the Amazon.com location for the book.
Photo of the book "The Life and Times of Le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle". Click on the image to go to the Amazon.se location for the book.
This is the back cover of the book “The Life and Times of Le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle”. Click on the image to go to the Amazon.se location for the book.
Image showing the endorsements for the book. Click on the image to got to the Barnes and Noble location for the book.
These are the endorsements for the book. Click on the image to got to the Barnes and Noble location for the book.

Below is a list of where you can find the book. Click on the links to go to the respective store. However, if your favorite bookstore is not listed below you can search for it using the ISBN or ASIN numbers.

ISBN number for printed edition: 978-0998084954 ASIN number for the e-book edition: B0B5NN32SR

Categories
Book Reviews

A Prehistoric Woman and her Loyal and Brave Dog

This blog is primarily about Leonbergers and our late Leonberger Bronco as well as the book I wrote about him and his dog friends. However, sometimes I review other Leonberger books and on occasion other great books. This time I am reviewing Born in a Treacherous Time, the first book in the Dawn of Humanity series – March 8, 2019, by Jacqui Murray. This paperback is 381 pages, ISBN‏‎ 978-1942101451, item weight 1.23 pounds, dimensions 6 x 0.96 x 9 inches. You can buy it from, for example, Amazon or Barnes and Noble, as a paperback or e-Book. The paperback version is currently $15.99 on Amazon.

Photo of front cover of the book Born in a Treacherous Time by Jacqui Murray. Click on the image to go to the Amazon page for the book.
Front cover of the book Born in a Treacherous Time by Jacqui Murray. Click on the image to go to the Amazon page for the book.

This book, “Born in a Treacherous Time” is the story of a Homo Habilis woman, Lucy, who lived 1.8 million years ago in Africa. The book also features a large, loyal, and brave dog “Ump” who reminded me of our large, loyal and brave Leonberger dog Le Bronco von der Löwhenhöhle.

Lucy suffers many great losses, she travels across a great rift, she is very resourceful, she is a huntress and a healer, and she survives many potentially deadly challenges. She interacts with many interesting characters and experiences many harrowing adventures. She is a survivor but a survivor with a good heart. The characters in the book are compelling, and they will touch your heart despite being of a primitive human species. The many action-packed adventures in the book, makes it difficult to put it down.

The depiction of life in the early Quaternary is realistic, which some may have a problem with. The characters in this book hunt and kill, and they are hunted and killed. They don’t eat pizza and hot dogs with relish and mustard. Life back then was brutish, cruel and short and food was raw and whatever you could get. In this book there’s loss, sadness, starvation, violence as well as a lot of adventure. So many of us hide behind our modern comforts. We eat meat without considering the destructive environmental impacts of factory farming or that the animal providing our meal was treated much more inhumanely than any free running animal killed by a hunter. We forget how harsh life used to be. I prefer realistic depictions over Disney like fairy tales.

The same is true for Ump, the friendly and brave prehistoric dog that became one of Lucy’s companions. Their friendship began after Ump’s tragic loss of his family. He did not want to move on but Lucy, having suffered so much great loss herself, encouraged him to move on. Ump was very loving and fiercely protective. Perhaps he carried a Leonberger gene? Fossil records show that prehistoric dogs and hominids came across each other in Africa 1.8 million years ago. Any domestication might have been unlikely but that doesn’t mean the story about Lucy and Ump couldn’t have happened.

Just like some of Jean M Auel’s work was made into a film, I think this book and the rest of the series could be made into a film, or a TV series. There are so many fascinating stories in this book. I should mention that Jean M Auel wrote about a time period about 20,000 years ago towards the end of the last glacial period and it was taking place in Europe. Jacqui Murray is writing about a time period 1.8 million years ago at the beginning of the ice age (Quaternary) and the first glacial periods and it is taking place in Africa. So, the setting is quite different. Like Jean M Auel Jacqui Murray did her research. I highly recommend this thrilling and enlightening book of adventures and I am looking forward to reading the next books in the series.

Finally, I would like to promote my book about Bronco and Leonbergers. It has a lot of color photos, amusing Leonberger stories, and Leonberger information that has been verified and is also based on personal information.

This is a photo of the front cover of the book "The Life and Times of Le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle". Click on the image to go to the Amazon.com location for the book.
This is the front cover of the book “The Life and Times of Le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle”. Click on the image to go to the Amazon.com location for the book.
This is the back cover of the book "The Life and Times of Le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle". Click on the image to go to the Amazon.se location for the book.
This is the back cover of the book “The Life and Times of Le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle”. Click on the image to go to the Amazon.se location for the book.
This image is showing the endorsements for the book. Click on the image to got to the Barnes and Noble location for the book.
These are the endorsements for the book. Click on the image to got to the Barnes and Noble location for the book.

Below is a list of where you can find the book. Click on the links to go to the respective store. However, if your favorite bookstore is not listed below you can search for it using the ISBN or ASIN numbers.

ISBN number for printed edition: 978-0998084954

ASIN number for the e-book edition: B0B5NN32SR

Categories
Book Reviews

Leonberger Dog Complete Owner’s Manual

Followers of my blog probably know that I sometimes review Leonberger books, and on occasion other types of books. This time I am reviewing Leonberger, Leonberger Dog Complete Owners Manual. Leonberger book for care, costs, feeding, grooming, health and training. May 31, 2015 by George Hoppendale (Author), Asia Moore (Author). The paperback is 186 pages, black and white, ISBN‏‎ 978-1910941003, item weight 9.1 ounces, dimensions 6 x 0.41 x 9m inches. You can buy it from Amazon and Barnes & Noble and it exist in both printed version (paperback) and e-Book (kindle). Currently the paperback version is $12.58 on Amazon and $13.97 on Barnes and the kindle version is $8.97.

Photo of front cover of Leonberger Dog Complete Owner’s Manual by George Hoppendale and Asia Moore. Click on the photo to go to the Amazon page for the book.
Leonberger Dog Complete Owner’s Manual by George Hoppendale and Asia Moore. Click on the photo to go to the Amazon page for the book.

Our Leonberger Bronco lived a long life for a Leonberger. He was the sweetest most loving and brave soul I’ve known, and he was quite intelligent. The average life span of a Leonberger is 8 years and Bronco was two weeks short of 13 years old when we had to put him to sleep. I read this book while we still had Bronco and later on, I read it again. The first four chapters of the book are fairly specific to Leonbergers, including a description of Leonbergers, how to choose a breeder, and some vital statistics. The next five chapters apply to any dogs but still contain some information about Leonbergers regarding health problems, feeding and care. Chapter 10 to 18 apply to any dog and describes training, grooming, medical care, poisonous food and caring for aging dogs. The book also lists rescue organizations, resources and references.

Photo of page 6 of the book Leonberger Dog Complete Owner’s Manual by George Hoppendale and Asia Moore. Click on the photo to go to the Barnes and Noble page for the book.
Page 6 of Leonberger Dog Complete Owner’s Manual by George Hoppendale and Asia Moore. Click on the photo to go to the Barnes and Noble page for the book.

I should say that the authors did not own a Leonberger and they wrote a lot of dog books for many different breeds containing similar content. However, a lot of dog book authors have done this. They basically mass produce dog books reusing material. In some Leonberger books the breed specific information minor and incorrect, as if the authors had never seen a Leonberger and copied their information from an online source focused on Pugs. Yes you really have to watch out when you buy a Leonberger book. It might not be about Leonbergers at all. At least the authors of this book included substantial Leonberger information that was mostly correct. Another consideration is that if you write about Leonbergers you have to include some information that is apply to all dogs or the information will be insufficient.

The book is fairly basic, but it contains useful and important information, some of it that I did not know before reading it. The book contains an error on page 120 where they are referring to Leonbergers as “smaller dogs”. I believe that is a copy and paste error, maybe from their Pug book. However, the book describes Leonbergers as being big (120lbs to 170lbs) everywhere else in the book, so this is obviously just a typo. The book was well written, easy to read, and as a (former) Leonberger owner I think it was a good introduction to caring for a Leonberger (as well as other dogs). The fact that the paperback version was in black and white was a little bit of a disappointment, but the color printing cost is quite high. There are better Leonberger books, but I still recommend this book because it contains mostly correct information, and it is inexpensive.

I gave it four stars on Amazon.  Some people may think that four stars might be high based on what I’ve said. However, based on all the Leonberger books I’ve read, and I’ve read many; if you go any cheaper on your Leonberger book you are going to get a book with nothing but nonsense.

Finally, I would like to promote my book about Bronco and Leonbergers. It has a lot of color photos, amusing Leonberger stories, and Leonberger information that has been verified and is also based on personal information.

Image of the the front cover of the book "The Life and Times of Le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle". Click on the image to go to the Amazon.com location for the book.
This is the front cover of the book “The Life and Times of Le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle”. Click on the image to go to the Amazon.com location for the book.
Image of the back cover of the book "The Life and Times of Le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle". Click on the image to go to the Amazon.se location for the book.
This is the back cover of the book “The Life and Times of Le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle”. Click on the image to go to the Amazon.se location for the book.
Image showing the endorsements for the book. Click on the image to got to the Barnes and Noble location for the book.
These are the endorsements for the book. Click on the image to got to the Barnes and Noble location for the book.

Below is a list of where you can find the book. Click on the links to go to the respective store. However, if your favorite bookstore is not listed below you can search for it using the ISBN or ASIN numbers.

ISBN number for printed edition: 978-0998084954

ASIN number for the e-book edition: B0B5NN32SR

Categories
Leonbergers

What Is A Dog Breed Standard

A dog breed standard is a description of the characteristics of an ideal example of a dog breed. The description may include physical characteristics, genetic criteria, behavioral characteristics, or criteria of athletic or productive performance. Breed standards are devised by breed associations, and are written to reflect the use or purpose of the dog breed. The Federation Cynologique Internationale regulates breed standards for dogs internationally. However, the American Kennel Club, does not belong to the international body and uses its own breed standard format. In practice the breed standards are very similar.

For the AKC, the breed standard, and any revision thereof, originates with an AKC parent club. For Leonbergers the parent club is the Leonberger Club of America. It was very lucky that it became that way. To read about the history of the history of the Leonberger breed standard, Leonberger Club of America and the great dog wars, click here.

Below is a visual depiction of the physical aspects of the Leonberger breed standard. To find out more click on the image.

Image showing the physical criteria of the Leonberger breed standard. Click on the photo to read more about the Leonberger breed standard.
Physical physical criteria of the Leonberger breed standard. Click on the photo to read more about the Leonberger breed standard.

Finally, I would like to promote my book about Bronco and Leonbergers.

This is the front cover of the book "The Life and Times of Le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle". Click on the image to go to the Amazon.com location for the book.
This is the front cover of the book “The Life and Times of Le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle”. Click on the image to go to the Amazon.com location for the book.
This is the back cover of the book "The Life and Times of Le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle". Click on the image to go to the Amazon.se location for the book.
This is the back cover of the book “The Life and Times of Le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle”. Click on the image to go to the Amazon.se location for the book.
These are the endorsements for the book. Click on the image to got to the Barnes and Noble location for the book.
These are the endorsements for the book. Click on the image to got to the Barnes and Noble location for the book.

Below is a list of where you can find the book. Click on the links to go to the respective store. However, if your favorite bookstore is not listed below you can search for it using the ISBN or ASIN numbers.

ISBN number for printed edition: 978-0998084954

ASIN number for the e-book edition: B0B5NN32SR

Categories
Leonbergers

The Life Span of Different Dog Breeds

As I mentioned before, our Leonberger Le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle, or as we called him, Bronco, was an unusually long lived Leonberger. Leonbergers live on average 8-9 years, but our Bronco almost made it 13 (by two weeks).

Photo of our old Leonberger Bronco going on 13. He loved walking into his old age but needed breaks.
Our Old Leonberger Bronco going on 13. He loved walking into his old age but needed breaks.
Snapshot of website where you can lookup the life spans of hundreds of dog breeds.
You can look up the average life span of hundreds of dog breeds by clicking on the image. As you see, smaller dogs live longer, the giant breeds have the shortest life spans.

Scientific veterinary research has shown that large dogs have a much shorter life span than small dogs. This is not controversial, yet so many people are surprised by it. For example, one day after Bronco had just visited the veterinarian and I was walking him around the shopping center, a woman came up to me and asked about him. I told her he was twelve—old for a Leonberger. She said, “Twelve isn’t very old; my Chihuahua lived to be sixteen.” I explained to her that big dogs, especially really big dogs such as Leonbergers and Saint Bernards, don’t live as long as small dogs do, so for a Leonberger, Bronco was indeed really old. The look on her face told me she didn’t believe me; excuses, excuses, excuses. So this fact is far from intuitive to people, especially considering that big animals tend to live longer than small animals in the wild.

The cliché that one human year corresponds to seven dog years is a myth. For example, the average life span of a Great Dane is eight to ten years. For a Chihuahua, it is twelve to twenty years. Dachshunds and Pomeranians live between twelve and sixteen years, and pugs live between twelve and fifteen years. The average life span of a Leonberger, by contrast, is eight to nine years (some sources say seven years*). You can look up your dog’s particulars online: the product-review website Goody Pet features a life-expectancy calculator for hundreds of dog breeds.

Knowing the expected life span of your dog has value. When a dog reaches three-quarters of it, for example, he is considered a senior and needs to be treated differently.‡ You should get dog food that’s especially made for senior dogs and visit the veterinarian more often—ideally, twice a year.

To take Bronco’s temperature, we used a thermometer that we could insert into his ear canal. However, you can also do it the old-fashioned way: coat a thermometer with petroleum jelly or baby oil and gently insert it about one inch into your dog’s anus. Wait sixty seconds, then remove the thermometer. It should be noted, however, that the old-fashioned approach may lead to protests.

It’s also important to keep careful track of your Leonberger’s weight. Obesity in dogs is a growing problem: according to the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention, in 2018, 56 percent of American dogs were obese. Obesity, by definition, is a condition in which a person—or an animal—weighs at least 30 percent more than his ideal weight. In the photo below, in which Bronco is sitting on Claudia’s lap, he weighed 167 pounds—thirty-two pounds above his ideal weight of 135 pounds. Soon after that photograph was taken, we put him on a diet. Obesity can cause a lot of health problems, including diabetes, heart disease, early-onset arthritis, and joint pain. It can also put a strain on the body’s vital organs.

Photo of our Leonberger Bronco sitting in Claudia's lap. Bronco was a loving dog but 167 pounds in your lap might be a tad much.
Bronco was a loving dog but 167 pounds in your lap might be a tad much.

Finally, I would like to promote my book about Bronco and Leonbergers.

This is a photo of the front cover of the book "The Life and Times of Le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle". Click on the image to go to the Amazon.com location for the book.
This is the front cover of the book “The Life and Times of Le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle”. Click on the image to go to the Amazon.com location for the book.
Photo of the back cover of the book "The Life and Times of Le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle". Click on the image to go to the Amazon.se location for the book.
This is the back cover of the book “The Life and Times of Le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle”. Click on the image to go to the Amazon.se location for the book.
This image feature the endorsements for the book. Click on the image to got to the Barnes and Noble location for the book.
These are the endorsements for the book. Click on the image to got to the Barnes and Noble location for the book.

Below is a list of where you can find the book. Click on the links to go to the respective store. However, if your favorite bookstore is not listed below you can search for it using the ISBN or ASIN numbers.

ISBN number for printed edition: 978-0998084954 ASIN number for the e-book edition: B0B5NN32SR

Categories
Bronco's Adventures

Baby Protects Bronco from Dogs Walking Off Leash

This story is an excerpt from the book “The Life and Times of Le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle” (see below). This story is about when our German Shepherd Baby protected our Leonberger puppy Bronco from dogs walking off leash. It is a violent and scary story, but also a story about the mother instinct and of bravery. The moral of the story is; always use a leash when walking your dog in public.

Baby was our second family dog. She was a German shepherd and was also a rescue. (Although we were told that she was a purebred, we didn’t have a certificate.) First Claudia’s sister Marianne adopted her, but when Marianne moved to France, we adopted Baby. Baylor and Baby became good friends, but sometimes Baby got annoyed with Baylor when he stole food, especially when it was hers. She liked to lie at the entrance to the kitchen and tell the other dogs, particularly Baylor, “You shall not pass.” It wasn’t because she wanted the food for herself. She just didn’t like other dogs stealing it, so she tried to prevent it, like a good kitchen police dog.

Photo of our German Shepherd Baby at the dog park.
Baby was always a little wary at the dog park.

Baby was quiet and well behaved. She was well trained and easy to walk, but she wasn’t fond of noisy places. She was a bit anxious and less social than our other dogs, and she didn’t like dog parks, though she tolerated them. We were told that she had been mistreated by her first owners, and the first months of a dog’s life are very important for his or her mental health.

Photo of our German Shepherd playing with our Leonberger puppy Bronco.
Bronco, at the age of four or five months, would soon outgrow his playmate Baby.

Even though Baby was a shy and anxious dog at first, once we got Bronco, her personality changed. She loved Bronco, and she took on the job of being Bronco’s adoptive mom. She played with him; she watched him; she was fiercely protective of him. Bronco was her puppy. She seemed rejuvenated, as if she had found an important job to do—a purpose, if you will. It was beautiful to see her take care of Bronco and play with him. She became happier and more confident, and Bronco loved her.

Photo of our Leonberger Bronco from when he was around three months old
This photo of Bronco was taken when he was around three months old, soon after we got him.

One day I was out walking with Baylor, Baby, and Bronco. Bronco was very young, maybe four months old. We met a man walking two medium-size black dogs off leash. Suddenly, one of the dogs attacked us. There was nothing I could do. As I watched helplessly, the black dog made the monumental mistake of going for Bronco. If the dog had attacked Baylor or Baby, either dog would certainly have put up a courageous defense, but going after Bronco was nearly suicidal, not because of Bronco himself but because of Baby.

I heard a loud explosion of barks that lasted only a few seconds, and then I saw the black dog flying five or six feet up into the air. Baby had bitten him in the side and tossed him skyward. It was surreal. I almost couldn’t believe what I was witnessing.

The black dog lay in the street. The man knelt before him and started crying. He said his dog’s back was broken. I was mortified, and I said, “I am so terribly sorry.” He said, “It’s not your fault. I was the one walking my dogs without a leash.” It was gratifying for me to hear that under the circumstances, but it was no less tragic.

Then, to my astonishment, the black dog stood up and quickly walked back to the other side of the street. The dog was in shock, but he was fine. The man calmed down, and we said goodbye to each other on good terms.

It wasn’t the only time Baby protected Bronco, but it was the most memorable. Thinking about it still sends chills down my spine. Years later, after Baylor and Baby passed and we got our small dogs, Bronco would take on the role of their protector. He would save lives.

Picture of the front cover of the book "The Life and Times of Le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle".
This is the front cover of the book “The Life and Times of Le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle”. Click on the image to go to the Amazon.com location for the book.
Image of the back cover of the book "The Life and Times of Le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle".
This is the back cover of the book “The Life and Times of Le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle”. Click on the image to go to the Amazon.se location for the book.
Image showing the endorsements for the book.
These are the endorsements for the book. Click on the image to got to the Barnes and Noble location for the book.

Below is a list of where you can find the book. Click on the links to go to the respective store. However, if your favorite bookstore is not listed below you can search for it using the ISBN or ASIN numbers.

ISBN number for printed edition: 978-0998084954

ASIN number for the e-book edition: B0B5NN32SR

Below are a few of the places where you can buy it. Click on a link to buy it from your favorite store.

Categories
Book

Print Version and eBook Bundled

Here is one more post about the book “The Life and Times of Le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle”. This time I am announcing that the book is now available on the Nook and the printed version and Kindle version has been bundled on Amazon and the printed version and the e-Book version has been bundled on Barnes and Noble. Therefore, it is not necessary to list e-Book versions separately (see links below). I would also like to take the opportunity to thank those who have written reviews or have rated the book. Thank you very much!

This is a picture of the front cover of the book "The Life and Times of Le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle". You can click on the image to go to the Amazon.com location for the book.
This is the front cover of the book. Click on the image to go to the Amazon.com location for the book.
This is a photo of the back cover of the book "The Life and Times of Le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle". You can click on the image to go to the Amazon.se location for the book.
This is the back cover of the book. Click on the image to go to the Amazon.se location for the book.
This is an image of the endorsements for the book. "A wonderful tribute to the author's beloved Bronco. The stories are heartwarming as well as informative - a true glimpse into life with a Leonberger" - D'Nae Wilson, President, Leonberger Health Foundation International -- "A lovely tribute to Bronco, with lots of resources for general Leonberger information" - Julie Schaffert, LCA breeder since 1992. You can click on the image to got to the Barnes and Noble location for the book.
These are the endorsements for the book. Click on the image to got to the Barnes and Noble location for the book.

I have updated the list where you can find the book (see below). However, if your favorite bookstore is not listed below you can search for it using the ISBN or ASIN numbers.

ISBN number for printed edition: 978-0998084954

ASIN number for the e-book edition: B0B5NN32SR

Below are a few of the places where you can buy it. Click on a link to buy it from your favorite store.

Categories
Book

Lets Do Le Bronco von der Lowenhohle

On social media I’ve been posting faulty book covers with Bronco’s full name misspelled. A Facebook friend of mine pointed it out. Thank you Guido! Well, it’s not the first time Bronco have had an issue with his name being misspelled, just look at his original birth certificate.

Image of snippet from Bronco's original certificate from LCA “Lets do Le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle”.
Bronco’s name on his original certificate “Lets do Le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle”.

You may have figured out from the title of this book that Bronco’s full name was Le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle. However, his name on the original pedigree certificate from the Leonberger Club of America was even more interesting: “Lets do le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle”—yes, without the apostrophe. How did that happen?

The Leonberger is a noble and relatively rare breed, and purebred Leonbergers typically have a long pedigree that can be traced back to the beginning of the twentieth century. This means that if you buy one, you and your dog will become part of a special community, and your dog’s name will reflect that. Bronco’s last name, von der Löwenhöhle, means that he originated from Kennel von der Löwenhöhle.

During an email exchange with the person writing up Bronco’s pedigree certificate, we were informed that because our dog was born in a litter identified by the letter L, his official name needed to begin with an L, too, even though at home we could call our dog whatever we liked. We knew we wanted to name him Bronco, which we thought was appropriate for a Leonberger, so later Claudia wrote, “Let’s do Le Bronco,” intending that the dog’s name would begin with the word “Le,” fulfilling the kennel’s requirement.

But when we received a copy of Bronco’s pedigree, we saw that our correspondent had misunderstood and included the words “Let’s do” as part of the name! Well, “Let’s do” starts with an L, too, so it fulfilled the pedigree requirement. And that’s how Bronco’s official full name came to be Lets do le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle.

There were other mistakes on the certificate, too: Bronco was classified as female, and our last name was misspelled as Wickman. We later got these mistakes corrected in the Worldwide Independent Leonberger Database, and some mistakes were corrected on the registration certificate from the American Kennel Club, which we got in 2010, after the Leonberger was recognized by the AKC. But none of that mattered much to us: we knew his name; Jacob knew his name; Bronco knew his name. Plus, we got a good story out of it.

Photo of Bronco's original (birth) certificate from LCA. We were surprised to see Bronco’s official name as it appeared on his pedigree as well as the other mistakes.
We were surprised to see Bronco’s official name as it appeared on his pedigree as well as the other mistakes.

So, what about my social media faux pas. Well below you can see the two front page covers that I have been using for front page cover images and I did not even notice the difference. The one that says: “The Life and Times of Le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle” is the correct one. Luckily the book has the correct front cover. It is just my social media posts that got messed up. Another difference between the two front covers is his photo. On the correct front cover his photo is from when he was 12 years old. On the incorrect front cover his photo is from when he was a month short of 13 years old.

The correct front cover of the book "The Life and Times of Le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle".
The correct front cover (click on the image to go to the Amazon page for the book).
The faulty front cover of the book "The Life and Times of Le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle". Löwenhöhle spelled Löwenhöle.
The faulty front cover (click on the image to go to the Amazon page for the book).
Back cover of the book "The Life and Times of Le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle".
This is the back cover of the book. Click on the image to go to the Amazon.se location for the book.
The endorsements for the book "The Life and Times of Le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle". 

A wonderful tribute to the author's beloved Bronco. The storiesn are heartwarming as well as informative - a true glimpse into life with a Leonberger - D'Nae Wilson, President, Leonberger Health Foundation International

A lovely tribute to Bronco, with lots of resources for general Leonberger information. - Julie Schaffert, LCA breeder since 1992.
These are the endorsements for the book. Click on the image to got to the Barnes and Noble location for the book.

Below is an updated list of where you can find the book. If your favorite bookstore is not listed below you can search for it using the ISBN or ASIN numbers.

ISBN number for printed edition: 978-0998084954

ASIN number for the e-book edition: B0B5NN32SR

My email is : thomaswikman@msn.com

Below are a few of the places where you can buy it. Click on a link to buy it from your favorite store.

Print version

E-book version

Categories
Book

Bronco on Barnes And Noble

Last week I published a book “The Life and Times of Le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle” and it has been available on Amazon in print format and on Kindle, not just in the US but all over the world. However, I’ve had issues with Barnes and Noble. It was available on Barnes and Noble too, but the front cover image refused to upload. Well, it is finally there. The book, both the print version and the Kindle version, also got added to the Amazon stores in Australia and Japan. Another change is the category. You can have two categories on Amazon as an independent publisher and I chose “dog breeds”, and that makes sense. However, “US State and local history” snuck in there, and I don’t know how. Perhaps, Bronco is part of Texas history? In any case I changed this to “dog training”.

Front cover image of the book "The Life and Times of Bronco von der Löwenhöhle". Stories and Tips from Thirteen Years with a Leonberger.
Front cover of “The Life and Times of Bronco von der Löwenhöhle”. By clicking on the image you go to the Amazon.com page for the book.
Back cover image of  the book "The Life and Times of Bronco von der Löwenhöhle". Stories and Tips from Thirteen Years with a Leonberger.
Back cover of “The Life and Times of Bronco von der Löwenhöhle”. By clicking on the image you go to the Amazon.se page (Swedish page) for the book.
Endorsements for the book "The Life and Times of Bronco von der Löwenhöhle". Stories and Tips from Thirteen Years with a Leonberger.
Endorsements for “The Life and Times of Bronco von der Löwenhöhle”. By clicking on the image you go to the Barnes and Noble page for the book.

I have updated the list where you can find the book (see below). However, if your favorite bookstore is not listed below you can search for it using the ISBN or ASIN numbers.

ISBN number for printed edition: 978-0998084954

ASIN number for the e-book edition: B0B5NN32SR

My email is : thomaswikman@msn.com

Below are a few of the places where you can buy it. Click on a link to buy it from your favorite store.

Print version

E-book version

Categories
Bronco's Adventures

Rollo Rolls In

Bronco grew up with several other dogs, a Labrador (Baylor), a German Shepherd (Baby), a Japanese Chin (Ryu), a Pug (Daisy), and finally a mini-Australian Shepherd Rollo. The book also describes some of the adventures of Bronco’s siblings and his interactions with them. This post is focused on Rollo and Bronco’s great patience with Rollo.

Picture of a mini-Australian Shepherd puppy on grass.
A frightened puppy at his new home.
Mini-Australian puppy on blanket.
None of us could resist Rollo when he was a young pup.
Bronco the Leonberger and his new little mini-Australian puppy.
Bronco and Rollo

Six months after the passing of our Japanese Shin Ryu, we decided to get another dog. Rachel really wanted a miniature Australian shepherd, so we got one from a breeder in East Texas. We named him Rollo, after the Viking who was the first ruler of Normandy. In 885–86 CE, Rollo led the Viking siege of Paris but was fended off by Odo, the count of Paris. Our Rollo may not have been quite as brave as the medieval Rollo (or Odo), but he was cute and full of energy.

Rollo was not a big puppy, and at the beginning he was afraid of everything and everyone. However, he quickly warmed up to both Daisy and Bronco, and he was potty trained quickly. Rachel was the one who did most of the training: she stayed with him at night and put a bell on the door to the backyard, which he rang whenever he wanted to go outside. Every time he went, he got a little treat and praise afterward. It made him happy and proud.

We also tried to take him for walks, but he did not understand the concept right away. He would lie down on his back or stand on his hind legs and stretch his paws up, wanting to be carried. So we held him in our arms as we walked him around the neighborhood with the other dogs. He was happy up there in our arms, and he contentedly chewed on his leash and harness.

But even after he started walking on his own four feet, he was still a bit anxious and easily frightened. If we saw a cat, we had to turn around and walk straight back home. If we heard a truck engine-braking on the main road a quarter mile away, we had to turn around and walk straight back home. If we saw a man with a little dog, we had to turn around and walk straight back home. If we heard a duck quacking, we had to run for our lives back home. Ducks make strange sounds that can be very scary to little puppies. Whenever we walked or ran back home, I was right behind him as he pulled the leash.

There was one thing Rollo was not afraid of, and that was Bronco. Bronco was the biggest dog Rollo had ever seen—not to mention the biggest dog many people had ever seen—yet Rollo was continually testing Bronco’s patience. One time Rollo and I were sitting on the sofa, and Bronco was sleeping at our feet. Suddenly I saw Rollo stepping off the sofa and onto Bronco’s back, then walking across Bronco’s back down to the floor. Bronco was grumbling a bit, but he let Rollo literally walk all over him.

Rollo our mini-Australian Shepherd loves belly rubs even from Bronco
“Please, Bronco, I want my belly rub.”

I also noticed that Rollo liked to play with Bronco’s tail. One day Bronco began barking at me intently, as he did when he wanted me to do something or pay attention to him. I couldn’t see anything amiss at first, but then I saw something going on behind him. I took a closer look and saw Rollo dangling from Bronco’s tail. He was biting it and using it as a swing. I got Rollo off right away, of course, which is exactly what Bronco wanted. He was being very patient with Rollo, but Rollo wanted to play.

Our mini-Australian Shepherd Rollo pulling our Leonberger Bronco's tail.
To my astonishment, Bronco didn’t react angrily when Rollo swung like Tarzan from his tail.

Of course, the dogs often go in the backyard to do their business (I don’t mean the kind of business that’s taxable). This requires me to do pickup duty. On one occasion I was walking up and down the lawn, looking for poop and picking it up, when Rollo ran over to my left side and pushed me with his nose and nipped my shoes a little bit. Then he ran behind me and did the same thing on my right side. Then he ran behind me again and repeated the process, and so it went—over and over and over. Then I realized that to him, I was a sheep, and he was having fun herding me. He herded me down the lawn and back up again until all the poop was picked up. We were a team: he the herding dog in charge and I the pooper-picker-upper sheep. We performed this ritual several times. Claudia and I thought about taking him to one of those farms where you can let your shepherd dog herd sheep just for fun, but we never got around to it.

Rollo soon found something else he seemed to enjoy even more, and that was playing with balls—chasing them, fetching them, chewing them, pushing them, rolling them, kicking them, jumping on them, and biting them. It is a truly amazing sight. There’s so much energy and joie de vivre involved. To this day, whenever a ball rolls under a sofa, Rollo gets upset and barks at the sofa. Then you have to bend down and get the ball out. You better do what he wants or he’ll wail like a toddler.

Our mini-Australian Shepherd playing with a volley ball.
Rollo plays with one of his favorite toys.
Our mini-Australian Shepherd Rollo with a soccer ball
Rollo with another ball.

Rollo also loved chewing on shoes when he was younger. Fortunately, he’s gotten over that behavior, but in the process we’ve lost a lot of shoes. One time I forgot that I had left my shoes under a table in our TV room. I was walking around the house when I met Rollo in a hallway holding one of my shoes in his mouth. He gave me a deer-in-the-headlights look, then he slowly turned around and tiptoed back into the TV room. He placed my shoe back under the table, right next to its mate, positioning it correctly so it was just the way I had left it. Then he tiptoed away as if pretending that nothing had happened.

Rollo could be quite an artist when it came to shoes. Maybe we should have framed his work instead of throwing it away. Maybe we should have established a little chewed-shoe museum so people could have paid admission to see it.

Our mini-Australian Shepherd with one of his creations, an artistically chewed up shoe.
The artist poses with one of his creations.

Rollo is also pretty good at finding weird things in the backyard and bringing them into the house—snails, lizards, strange-looking larvae and worms, caterpillars, and creatures that might have been space aliens. I’m not sure: I mean, I’ve seen Men in Black, and some of the stuff he brought in could have been small versions of the creatures from that movie. Our backyard looks like a typical backyard on the surface, but Rollo made us realize that it’s actually an amazing world full of amazing creatures.

One day as I was walking Daisy and Rollo, we saw a frog, or perhaps it was a toad. It was jumping ahead of us. Both Daisy and Rollo had been looking down, sniffing the asphalt and the grass. As the frog jumped in front of us, the dogs became very curious. They sniffed and looked closely at the frog, and then, for the first time, Rollo looked up at me, straight into my eyes, questioning. What is that? I got the strange feeling that he wanted me to explain.

I told Rollo, “It’s a frog.” Even though he doesn’t understand English—or at least I don’t think he does—it seemed like he wanted me to say more, give him some indication that this unfamiliar life form wasn’t dangerous. Then Rollo gently touched the frog with his paw and patted it a bit. He was enjoying himself, but the frog may have felt differently. The world is full of wonders when you’re a puppy.

It’s also full of things that can seem threatening. So even though we got a stroller for Daisy, the dog who I think uses it the most is Rollo—although not because he gets tired walking. On the contrary, he seems to have endless energy. But Rollo is a bit of an anxious dog, and he feels safe in the stroller.

Canis Lupus, the grey wolf is a fearsome and courageous hunter in nature.

Canis Lupus familiaris, the dog, a close relative of the grey wolf, is sometimes less brave. This specimen prefers to sit in a stroller when he hears strange sounds.