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Runa the labrador mix

Black dog standing on fallen tree in forest

Name: Runa
Born: 26 December 2017
Breed: Labrador Retriever mixed with Scandinavian hound
Blog posts: archive for “Runa”

Runa, a.k.a. The Goblin a.k.a. The Black Tornado, is simultaneously the smartest and the dumbest dog I’ve ever met. She loves all forms of work, has a high will to please, and will pick up new commands in mere minutes. She will also run head-first into a tree because a nearby fly distracts her. But no matter what she’s always happy. There’s never a sad face or a dull moment with this one around! We joke that her theme song is Queen’s “Don’t Stop Me Now” 😅

I’ve trained her in retrieving, nose work, and in dog sledge racing. During the summer half of the year, we do canicross, which is when she pulls me while I run.

Runa’s mum is a purebred hunting-type labrador and her dad is a labrador mixed with Scandinavian hound.

Her name is the Swedish word for “rune”, as in the singular form for a letter from the Runic alphabet.

Maja the cat

Grey cat laying next to a potted plant

Name: Maja
Born: We don’t know, probably in the first half of 2011
Breed: Common domestic cat (i.e. no particular breed)
Blog posts: archive for “Maja”

In the summer of 2011, we signed up to be a foster home for the local animal protection association. Before long we got a call that they had a cat for us, and so Maja moved in.

She was going to live with us until she found a home of her own, and a couple took her for a few weeks in March 2012 but decided they didn’t want her. In November 2012, when she had been living with us for over a year, we decided to stop avoiding the obvious and keep her. She’s not going anywhere, why would she?

She was living as a stray when they caught her in one of their traps, so nobody knows anything about her. She was probably a couple of months old when we got her, not a kitten but not completely grown up either. The first couple of days she was really nervous and mostly hid behind furniture, but she came around remarkably quickly.

Today she’s a very sweet and social cat. She has a few quirks, but what is a cat without quirks? 😉 She hates being picked up, but if you sit or lay down she will happily come and cuddle with you. She’s shy around strangers and hides if there are lots of people and commotion around. She also talks a lot, we can have whole conversations with her.

Markus is her favourite person in the whole world and she loves sleeping on his chest. 100% daddy’s girl. Me and the dogs are… tolerated. 😁

In memoriam


Name: Skare
Lived: 25 July 2022 – 11 April 2024
Breed: Golden Retriever mixed with a little bit of Border Collie and English Springer Spaniel
Blog posts: archive for “Skare”

The baby of the family is an oaf. A big shaggy bumbling oaf and I mean that in the most endearing way. His tail is always wagging in a lazy, unfocused sort of way. Like he has no idea what’s going on but is very happy to be here. He sucks at using his nose and is far from the athletic type. With that said, he’s not completely stupid. We’ve taught him quite a few commands so far and he’s very eager to please, but he’s hardly a workaholic…

I’m fine with that, what’s more important is that he’s a sweetheart. He loves to be close and cuddle and is friendly towards everyone he meets, people and animals alike.

Skare’s mum is a golden/border collie/English springer spaniel mix and his dad is a purebred golden retriever.

His name is the Swedish word for the hard icy crust that sometimes forms on top of snow. I don’t know if there’s a name for it in English?


Brindled whippet standing in evergreen forest

Name: Zaphod, mostly called “Zappo” for short
Lived: 22 March 2005 – 26 May 2017
Breed: Whippet
Blog posts: archive for “Zaphod”

This was His Royal Majesty Prince Zaphod… or at least that’s what he thought of himself.
He was more like a cat than a dog – poised, independent, and preferred to think for himself rather than listen to others. Fortunately, he was also a real mama’s boy so he did what I told him to, even if he thought I was stupid for not understanding that he was the king of the world.
He treated strangers like they didn’t exist, so to outsiders he mostly just seemed aloof and unsocial, but in the company of dear friends, he was a cuddly clown who loved to sleep with his head in your lap. Or preferably with his whole body across your chest…

Zaphod was named after the character Zaphod Beeblebrox in the book series The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams.

This dog was way more than just a pet to me. I liked him more than I liked most people, including friends and family, and I mean that. He was my sidekick, my best friend, and sometimes the only reason I even bothered getting out of bed in the morning.
I got him when I was 22, and I had him for 12 years. He was my first own dog that I got and raised by myself. He was weird and beautiful and funny, and I still miss him terribly. Thank you, Zappo ❤


Imaginary Karin - Flamma the corn snake

Name: Flamma (means “flame” in Swedish)
Species: Corn snake (panterophis guttatus guttatus)
Lived: 25 July 2004 – 4 March 2018
Blog posts: archive for “Flamma”

Flamma was the first pet I got after moving out of my parent’s house. Since I didn’t have the time or money to get a dog, my boyfriend at the time suggested a snake. It sounded way cooler than a hamster, so I went with his suggestion.

I bought Flamma from a breeder when she was about 2 months old and thinner than my pinky finger. She looked more like a red worm than a snake. But at the time of her death, she was longer than I am tall (170 cm) and thick enough to eat rats instead of mice.

I know for sure that Flamma was a she because she shared her vivarium with another corn snake for a short time, and 2 months later she surprised everyone by laying a pile of eggs. Another couple of months later 13 baby corns hatched. 🥰

If you’re interested in corn snakes I’ve written this post with basic info.