Echo River Ranch

Missy Schumaker,
Horseback Riding Dog

This dog is a Miniature Bichon Frise who loves to ride horses.

If she isn’t horseback riding, she is thinking about horseback riding. When she disappears, sometimes she can be found pouting on a stored saddle.
                                                                                     Click here to read more about Missy.

Statistics - A Description of Missy

Missy Schumaker Missy Schumaker goes by the barn name "Missy". She is a miniature Bichon Frise, half the normal weight and size of the breed. She is 2-2 hands (10 inches) tall at the shoulder and would wear a size 15 inch blanket at her current weight of 8.8 pounds.

Dog Statistics At A Glance Missy is considered a hypoallergenic dog as her hair does not shed, it grows and needs to be clipped about every other month. Her hair color is white, but her skin is gradually turning from pink to black. She has dark, almost black, eyes and a black nose.



The Beginning - How We Obtained Missy

picture of Missy and Ileen   Go to the "More Missy" page to read the longer story.

                      The Short Story

The ranch owners mother, Ileen Schumaker, wanted a small female Bichon Frise for a companion and service dog. A puppy with potential to be small was located on the internet. One look at the picture of this adorable puppy and Ileen was in love with her.

At eight weeks old, Missy was air freighted from Mississippi to Seatac airport. She was very tiny and weighed only 20 ounces. She was a very happy and playful puppy. However, Missy had no respect for authority or her living environment.

Ileen was battling fourth stage cancer and her health was rapidly deteriorating. When she could no longer care for Missy, Missy came to live at the ranch. Ileen received daily updates and visits at least twice a week. Missy looked forward to these lengthy visits as much as Ileen did.



Puppy Tails - Funny Things & Stories About Missy

Missys first horseback ride   Go to the "More Missy" page to read the longer story.

                      The Short Story

Missy has no fear of the horses and being underfoot is a dangerous venture. So one day when the horses were being saddled, she was placed on saddle on top of Big. That first horseback ride lasted only a minute or two but she was hooked. From then on, every time a horse is saddled, she begs to be lifted up. She goes along on most of the trail rides; she rides in a pet carrier hung from the saddle horn.

The silly antics are endless, Missy finds odd ways to entertain herself. She often races in circles and tries to get people or other animals to chase her. Sometimes she grabs a stray sock or stick and pretends to play keep away with it. When there is snow on the ground, she runs and kicks it into the air so that she can chase the frozen pieces as they fly in front of her. She has a large blue bouncig ball that she likes to chase and push around.

Missy also likes to dig. She often puts her nose down the little holes left by horses’ hooves in the mud and tries to dig them deeper. When weeds (or tansy plants) are pulled, she does not even wait for the roots to be out of the hole before she puts her head in it. We think she would be an excellent truffle dog if she could learn to search for the truffle scents.



The Present - What We Think About Missy

Missy happily riding in her bag Missy is a great comedian, as she is always doing something funny. She can imitate a rabbit and a baby snow seal. She finally learned to respect the house and now sleeps on the bed. Living on a farm, she is seldom clean, but she is well mannered for grooming, as well as, bathing.

She is definitely part of the ranch life. She even mimics the horses - licking the alfalfa leaves from the hay at feeding time, chewing grass with the horses when we stop for snack breaks, eating carrots or apples stolen the horses, and even trying to eat grain out of the feed buckets.

Missy plays at being brave, but is a coward at heart. She commands a lot of attention where ever she is, whether she is on a horse during a trail ride, greeting familiar faces with uncontrollable excitement, or guarding the car from the dash or back window.

She wants to be popular and hopes to build a large blog and twitter following. She also wants to make some u-tube videos so that she can someday get on Jay Leno, David Letterman, and Good Morning America.

Ileen passed in August of 2011. Missy was able to visit her almost daily during those final days. Missy layed beside and comforted Ileen for many of her final hours.



                                                            Click here to read more about Missy.