Goodbye to Glitnir
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Goodbye to Glitnir

Shortly after turning 13, we sadly had to say goodbye to our oldest Smooth Collie, Glitnir. For some obscure reason she tried to jump down from a 2 metre high cliff and landed too hard on her front legs. This led to damage to ligaments with full rupture in her left front leg, which made her unable to walk. We had her x-rayed and had Orthopedists in Sweden and Denmark evaluating the results, but you don’t want to put such an old dog through major surgery with a result that will make her limp no matter how successful the surgery might be. She was getting old of mind and in her body with limited hearing and sight, thus it was time to goodbye anyway, but she might have had 6 -12 months left if this accident hadn’t happen. I took her to Denmark to our veterinarians at Fjordens Dyrlæger yesterday where she was quietly and peacefully put to sleep.

Photo: Kennel Ulvedalen. Yuki and daughter Glitnir at kennel Ulvedalen 2009.

Glitnir (Aimé) was born either the 10th or 11th of March 2009 at Sinna Kornum’s kennel Collected Memories in Denmark. Her mother was my first Smooth Collie, Yuki (Kangasvuokon Shimmer of Spring) whom I had lent out to Sinna for breeding. Her father was Sinna’s male Uku (Heidelind’s Collected Memories), and she was one of a litter of eight where only five puppies survived. As I was working in France most of 2009, Yuki and Glitnir moved to my sled dog friends Susan Hansen and Bo Petersen at Kennel Ulvedalen during summer 2009 and stayed there until Christmas 2009. This meant that Glitnir grew up in a pack of Siberian Huskies and in many ways behaved more like a Siberian than a Collie in her early years. However, she also got that excellent pack behaviour that Siberians are known for. When Yuki died and we got our new pup Deli in 2013, she took care of Deli in the best possible way and continued to do so her whole life. Glitnir even played a little with Deli every day despite her high age.

Photo: Gabrielle. Glitnir and Deli in Iceland summer 2018.

Glitnir was named after one of the Icelandic banks that collapsed during the economic crash in 2008. Both Erik and I have lived in Iceland for many years, and it was Erik who chose this name for Glitnir to remember all the economic insanity of Iceland at the time. However, Glitnír is old Norse in origin from the Norse Mythology and is the golden hall of the god Forseti, son of Baldur and Nanna. The hall was shimmering in gold and silver, and an appropriate name for Glitnir with her golden colours and fantastic coat. As mentioned above, she first lived in Denmark, then moved to Gothenburg in Sweden with mother Yuki until 2013, when Yuki died and I got a position at Stockholm University. Then four great years in Stockholm with Deli until January 2018, when I got a position in Iceland and took Glitnir and Deli with me. Two years in Iceland before returning to Gothenburg and finally settling in our cozy house and garden in Landala Egnahem. In between, we lived for three months in State College, Pennsylvania in autumn 2015, close to Tussey Mountain where we did long walks with the dogs every day. Thus as you can hear, this dog has done a lot of travelling and walked many kilometers in her life. Not forgetting she has been part of many field seasons in Jämtland every summer while living in Sweden.

Photo: Erik Sturkell. Glitnir after a long day of fieldwork in the Forsaån Valley in Jämtland, Sweden, summer of 2017.

Glitnir’s endurance and health has been amazing, and her spirit has been one of a kind! Erik referred to her as having the Icelandic ‘áfram´ spirit, meaning always going forward, never giving up. This might also be the reason why she made this stupid jump that became so fatal, but that would be typical Glitnir to believe she could manage anything. This was a mentally very tough dog, who managed to scare off burglars in Sweden. You were well protected having Glitnir around and she will be sorely missed!

Photo: Gabrielle Deli and Glitnir at home in Landala Egnahem in January 2022 enjoying the garden tremendously, playing ball and playing with each other. A good life for a dog like Glitnir.
Photo: Erik Sturkell. Glitnir and Deli relaxing in the garden on Skjutbanegatan.