Yipee! Yogi and I got a kitty! Meet Pagi, the most handsome, loveble, charming new addition to our family. On September 30, 2011 Pagi came into our home after already having a spot in my heart. Pagi, which means "morning" in Indonesia, is a special kitty I cared for over a three year period. When he needed a new home, despite the best efforts of his heartbroken family, I gladly took him in. He and Yogi have hit it off tremendously well and life is good.

Suffering from an incredible broken heart after losing both Sasha and Letterman in such a short time, my ever-thoughtful sister took me away on a short vacation to Northern Ontario. My good friends at D.O.G. Bakery assured me that the right dog would find me. Little did I know I would fall in love with another Canadian...

Kathy and I set off to retrace part of a trip that our parents had taken 21 years prior, one year before our dad's sudden death. Dad (also known as Grandpa Bear) had taken many photos of this part of their Circle Tour of Lake Superior. He had written detailed notes on the back of each photo. Our mission was to find each site along the way and take a new photo, like a scavenger hunt!

How Yogi Bear Found Me

Our very first stop was at an Indian Crafts and Woodcarving Store in Pancake Bay. We asked if anyone had been around 20 years ago and were told the owners would be interested in the photos. We headed to the picnic table where they were visiting with friends, a cute little black dog sitting in the shade. When we were young girls, we had a Schipperke named Yogi Bear. As we showed them our old photos of the store, I was petting the little dog, commenting how cute he was. June, the owner of the store anxiously responded, "Oh, he is in desperate need of a new home!"

Come to find out, this young Schipperke/Klee Kai (miniature Alaskan Husky) mix had been given up by an elderly couple who could no longer care for him. His name was Bear. I told June we had just started our vacation, were traveling in my sister's car, and we would stop back in two days on our way back. If she hadn't found him a home, I would be interested in adopting him.

While I enjoyed every moment of our trip, the little black funny face blue-eye boy was on my mind. I was really excited to get back to Pancake Bay. I spent an hour one-on-one with Bear, walking him, petting him, and spent more time talking with June. She drew up the adoption papers and I signed them on June 28, 2007, on what would have been Sasha Bear's 13th birthday. All in all, something told me "the right dog" had found me.

Once back home, Bear (now Yogi Bear) and I quickly bonded. Those who met him early on are amazed to see what a different dog he has become with love, training, socialization, boundaries, exercise and routine. June and I kept in touch by email, and one month later she wrote the following: "You don't know how close he came to being put down by my husband because he was a growling little guy. I knew he was just scared and you have proved it. Yeah for us!"

YEAH! for rescues everywhere! Yogi still has issues we are working on, but I feel like the luckiest person on earth that he found me, as he has truly brought joy back into my life and my home and won a permanent spot in my heart.

Marsha and the first Yogi.

Marsha and the first Yogi.

Marsha and the current Yogi.

In Loving Memory of Sasha June 28, 1994 to June 3, 2007

and Letterman December 23, 1994 to April 9, 2007

This is a tribute to my dogs, Sasha and Letterman, who passed away in 2007.


10. Digging snowbeds in the drifts on Aunt Kathy's deck.

9. Aunt Sue and Uncle Den in Chicago, especially climbing in bed with Aunt Sue.

8. Staying at Gramma's house in Flint, we were lucky to do that a lot.

7. Hiking and camping in the mountains, especially in the Tetons, Wind River Range

and Lake Pend Orielle.

6. Playing in the snow and catching snowballs.

5. Running off leash in the ball field.

4. Going anywhere in the car.

3. Woo-wooing for treats, and singing along so proudly when the ice cream truck drove by.

2. Sniffy walks, especially at the Civic Center and the Nature Preserves.

1. Big sister Sasha, feisty, fun and always ready for our next adventure.


She came into my life five months after my sweet Maltese, Oliver, died unexpectedly at four years of age. Another white dog had won my heart, this one a tiny polar bear cub that would grow into a beautiful Samoyed. Sasha was named in memory of my dad, "Grampa Bear," and her sire, Silver Snowdancer. She was a very playful girl right from the start, loved her squeaky plush toys, playing tug of war and fetch. Sasha was an affectionate, loving dog who gave yippy little kisses, even after enduring long brushing sessions, She was my singing girl, and oh, the stories she would tell...She loved the snow and turned into an Iditarod dog when we walked in it! Sasha loved stalking squirrels and always made me laugh, as she looked so silly slinking low to the ground with her big furry body! She had the cutest smile and I dearly loved stroking the soft fur on her head. Sasha really enjoyed going to work with me, especially after we lost Letterman. She was so good walking with my client dogs. Sasha was my girlfriend. She dearly loved Letterman, her big little brother who never left her side until passing over the Rainbow Bridge.


Sasha Bear Snowdancer was born in Blackfoot, Idaho on June 28, 1994, and came into my life eight weeks later as a little polar bear cub weighing eight pounds. What a joy. Then a fellow I worked with at the time had a litter of Alaskan Malamute puppies born on December 23rd of that year, and by mid-February, Sasha had a little brother. Letterman (yes, indeed, named after David because he was so goofy right from the start), weighing in at 15 lbs. It was so funny to see her reaction as he grew before her eyes to nearly twice her weight!

We lived in and enjoyed Idaho and the surrounding areas until spring of 1996. We were able to go camping, cross country skiing and hiking in the Tetons, northern Idaho and various other very special areas in the west. Then I had a job transfer to Tulsa, Oklahoma, where we toughed out two very hot summers (and made some lifelong dog friends Madison & Yukon) before another job transfer. We were very happy to move to the Chicago area where once again we made incredible friends (Charlie, Shannon and Coco...along with their people, Sue and Dennis). In March of 2002, we became Traverse City residents and knew that we had found our home!

Baby Sasha Bear

Baby Letterman

Brother and sister love each other!

Sasha in her glory, barking at, biting and chasing the waves on Old Mission.

Letterman gleefully galloping down Old Mission.

Sasha Bear Snowdancer in her booties.

Letterman says this is the best bed!

Howling dogs on the March of Dimes Walk America.

Sasha loves her toys. Letterman is waiting for his walk!

Sasha, the Christmas Angel!

Letterman hanging out with Jake "Life is Good" pumpkin!

Sasha enjoys talking with her Husky puppy!

© 2017 Dog Mom at Your Service

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