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6/11/2004- 8/30/2008


 We got Mercedes from Playmor Siberians in Wisconsin as a puppy. We already had her sister Porscha here for a few weeks when Lisa, owner of Playmor, let us know she still had one more puppy available. Since I was trying to build up my recreational dogsled team, we gladly brought Mercedes home as a new addition to our pack. Although Mercedes spent most of her time playing with her sister Porscha, she immediately made a lasting freiendship with each dog in our pack, and was especially fond of our alpha male, Bandit. While all the other dogs would be out playing, Mercedes would always roust Bandit up from his nap and make him come out to play too.Mercedes was more reserved and less "in your face" than her sister Porscha. She was usually the one that would linger at the back of the crowd when our dogs were meeting someone new. After the new person was accepted by the others, Mercedes would shyly approach the new person with her ears back and tail slightly wagging to let them know that they passed her approval too.The first time I hooked Mercedes up with the team to try her at dogsledding, she was 8 months old. We went for a short run around the park behind our house and Mercedes took to running on a dogsled team like she had been doing it forever. When the harness went on Mercedes, something magical happened. Her shyness went away and was replaced with a strong sense of confidence. Mercedes ran in lead with either Oreo or Powder almost from the very start of her mushing career and it didn't take many runs before she became a dependable little steering wheel for the team. She was highly intellegent and learned the commands almost overnight. While she was the shy little sweetheart that slept by our feet in our bed at night she was the bold and fearless lead dog by day. Mercedes ran in every race I have ever ran in, usually as lead dog, and has pulled the team through whiteout storms, over snow covered logs across rushing creeks and trail obstacles of every sort, on 30 mile runs and in 24 below zero temperatures with winds raging at 60 below zero windchills. Even though I do plan to find another dog to fill her position on our team, Mercedes will never be replaced.Mercedes passed away on Saturday August 30, 2008 at aprox. 1 p.m She had been out running and romping in the dog yard with the other dogs that morning, and came inside to curl up for her nap in her usual spot at the top of our stairway. She never woke up. We took Mercedes to the University of Minnesota for a necropsy to try to determine her cause of death. The results ; Idiopathic Thymic Hemorrhage Syndrome, a rare condition, the cause has not been discovered yet.I am confident that Mercedes is now proudly running in her silver harness, courgeously leading the rest of the team on the other side of the rainbow bridge.