Update on Ocean…

A little while ago, I rambled on about our doggie Ocean who wasn’t acting like herself. One mental breakdown on my part later, we were at the vets’ inside an incredibly tiny and stuffy office. After much poking, prodding of Ocean and sweating like overcooked noodles from ourselves, the vet recommended switching her food (she might have allergies to it) and doing blood work and stool analysis.

River, super-serious as usual

I’m not one to leave things to chance. We had just switched our doggies’ food thinking this new brand might be a better quality for them but, since Ocean was obviously poisoned not reacting well to it, it had to go. Without further ado, we threw out the old and went shopping for new. Meanwhile, I cooked some oatmeal, eggs and tuna (we’re vegan but our doggies are not and they love tuna) and I made her a little get-better meal for her…though River thought it was awesome as well.

My lovely girl, not feeling her best

Since our last vet visit Ocean, who has always been on the thin side, has lost over 4 kilograms. Translated, that’s about 9 lbs…a huge percentage of her already tiny weight. It might very well be due to allergies over food, but my overactive mind created all sorts of other horrific diseases that could also be responsible for this issue. Terrified, I waited on pins and needles for the blood work and analysis results.

Finally, after calling the vet so many times I memorized the number, they came in.

This is where it can’t be easy to be a vet, but it’s also super challenging to be a patient. While the stool revealed nothing wrong, the blood work was inconclusive. Ocean has slightly elevated kidney numbers which might indicate an infection, might indicate something as dire as kidney disease (incurable, by the way), might just be a reaction to her food or might not be anything at all. I banged my head against the wall while the vet tried to calmly explain all the possible scenarios. I have to give her credit because, while I freaked out, she patiently explained everything from Leptospirosis to cancer. I wanted symptoms, outcomes (bad and good) and prognosis…and I wasn’t exactly mellow while she explained all the dire consequences that my poor, fluffy Ocean could be facing. Worse, if possible, she could be contagious and be giving some of these terrible diseases to River.

At some point, I started to bawl and became incomprehensible, so lovely hubby had to take over. I know they’re only dogs, but my silly heart doesn’t listen to reason or logic. It’s head over heels with these two fluff balls and nothing but happiness on their side will do.

Our gorgeous boy

So, what’s the prognosis? Well, unfortunately, medicine with animals is challenging mostly because they can’t talk to us. Ocean can’t tell us what hurts. The good news is that, since the last time we weighed her, she’s put on about 3lbs (that’s great news in only 7 days) and that she had almost clear results on the blood work and stool sample. But the truth is, gentle reader, that we don’t know for certain. I’m really hoping that it’s just a bad reaction to her food and things will keep getting better but we won’t know until a few weeks go by and she gets really better.

Meanwhile, I will give her extra cuddles and kisses…and River as well so he won’t feel left out.

Beautiful girl

 

If we were having coffee…

(credit: wikimedia)

If we were having coffee I’d tell you that Ocean, one of our two super-spoiled akitas, might be a bit sick. She’s been licking herself to the point that she’s irritating her skin, driving my hubby up the wall and worrying me to bits. We have an appointment with the vet on Thursday and I hope they’re on a listening mood because I’m going with all my worries real and imaginary.

I’d also tell you that I finally have an appointment with a dietitian about our recent switch to plant-based food. I have to make a 3-day diary of what I eat and drink and then show it to them so they can tell me how balanced it is or how to improve it. I’m really looking forward to it because I want to know if we’re missing iron or proteins or vitamins as soon as we can so we can fix it. I’m also worried about my water intake. I might be part gecko because I don’t think I drink enough of the stuff.

Finally, before you started to think I was totally normal, I’d moan about our weather. It’s minus 26 with the wind and it’s March. Time for Mother Nature to get on with the program and start easing off. Worse, there’s a massive storm on our way for Tuesday. We already have warnings and special statements online and it’s only the weekend.

I am so not excited about this.

How about you? How is your weekend going?

Credits: Weekend Coffee Share is a meme developed by Part Time Monster and now hosted by Nerd in the Brain

Warning: feral dog ahead

Here’s my protective, watch-dog, River busy guarding our home.

River hard at work

River hard at work

Here’s a close up of the dangerous fiend.

Notice the eyes are half-closed....

Notice the eyes are half-closed….

He’s sadly neglected as well as vicious…

That's my hand trying to wake him up...and not working.

That’s my hand trying to wake him up…and not working.

Yeap. He’s super-dangerous, this one.

Groundhog Day

Notwithstanding what the groundhog predicted, this is the scene outside my window right now…

img_0503

And that is Ocean, one of my two akita dogs who refuse to come inside when there’s a snow storm going on.

Inside? Not now!

I don’t want to come inside yet.

Why have cushions and warmth when you can sit on a pile of snow and ice?

Update: Ocean’s Booboo

I finally caved and dragged Ocean to the vet yesterday. There, they sedated her, shaved the area and palpated around. There wasn’t any blood or liquid coming from the toe so they turned to the X-ray for answers. And there, on the side of her bone there was a tiny fragment that was not attached to the big gone. On the other paw, it clearly was attached.

This is the toe in question

This is the toe in question

In one of her mad dashes around the yard, she must have injured the toe and broken that tiny bone.

Now the vet said there wasn’t anything we could do for the toe but, like all vets, she had a ton of very expensive ideas that might help Ocean. She suggested antibiotics, which I vetoed since there wasn’t an infection, massage and physiotherapy, which I vetoed again when I saw the price of one 20 minute session.

After paying over $500 for the trip, I took a groggy Ocean home.

Ocean sleeping off the anesthetic

Ocean sleeping off the anesthetic

River, keeping Ocean company.

River, keeping Ocean company.

Meanwhile all of this was going on, my lovely hubby was supposed to be at work. Instead, he was buying me this.IMG_0355

Some husbands get their wives flowers…I got the world’s oddest plunger.

Ocean’s boo-boo

We didn’t get dogs when we moved out to the country. We got dogs and then decided to move out to the country–because was a better environment for our pooches.

It’s safe to say they’re a little spoiled.

Our diva-girl, Ocean, posing for the camera

Our diva-girl, Ocean, posing for the camera

River loves watching TV

River loves watching TV

They’re fluffy, they’re silly and they’re ours. In spite of their ability to shed their body weight in hair every few months, we love them to bits.

That was why when I saw Ocean, limping, I ran to her side to check out the injury. After many licks from her and a few more from River, I was able to see that there was a bit of blood on her right front paw. Caring dog-mother that I am, I immediately ran for the antibiotic ointment.

Believe it or not, there was blood on this paw

Believe it or not, there was blood on this paw

Well, Ocean licked the ointment off in less time than it takes me to type this. I moaned in despair and reapplied. More licks followed.

I think she got hurt digging this hole...

I think she got hurt digging this hole…

My husband wasn’t as worried as I was…but I was besides myself. All day, I rushed from place to place, trying to get back home to check on our girl. When I finally got home, I ran to the yard, desperate to check on Ocean.

Why are you looking at me like that? Everything's fine.

Why are you looking at me like that? Everything’s fine.

The fuzz-ball in question was running around the yard madly chasing an invisible squirrel. I have never seen her that happy.

I guess I better cancel that emergency appointment I made at the vet’s.

Ocean and the plant

Ocean–our nimble, sneaky, doggie girl who’s just a fuzzy version of trouble–has learned a new trick. She’s learned how to open doors.

I have no idea how she’s learned that. Especially since she still doesn’t seem to understand the concept of not jumping up at people who are all dressed up on their way to work and smear them with dirty paws. You’d think the word: No! And Down! wouldn’t be that hard to understand, but Ocean seems completely stumped as to their meaning. Opening doors, on the other hand, she’s got that pat down.

The culprit trying to look innocent

The culprit…trying to look innocent

Unfortunately, Ocean has a passion for dirt that no amount of healthy doggie food will ease. Some time ago she discovered our poor plant and the dirt on it has become her doggie version of heaven. So, she tries and tries to get at this plant hidden in our office, that’s dying from lack of, you guessed it, lack of dirt. Once there, she eats the stuff until the roots show leaving traces of her snack all around the pot of the plant.

The evidence...clear as dirt

The evidence…clear as dirt

Up to now, I had stopped her from killing the innocent green creature by closing the door…but the last two days, I have woken to find the door open in the morning, dirt all over the floor and, I swear, Ocean licking her lips.

Today, after work, I actually caught her in the act. She had her dinner but refused to settle like the already comatose River, and snuck to the office. I crept after her and, sure enough, there she was, jumping up with unbelievable determination until her one paw hit the door handle and opened the door. Then in she went, to dirt heaven.

So, I think this weekend hubby and I will go get another plant (this one is a pretty past tense thing) and will move the pot and the plant into the living room so that we can keep an eye on it and Ocean can’t sneak around at night and get at it. As plans go, this one isn’t foolproof but its something.

The victim...barely alive

The victim…barely alive

 

I have no idea why she likes to eat dirt. There must be some worm DNA in there somewhere in akitas because otherwise how can you explain that she likes dirt but is very picky about kibble?

On the other hand, its a sad reality is that, in our house, we have to rearrange furniture and plants not according to taste but according to dog habits.

Coming up in 2016

What can you look forward to in this little blog? I happen to have big plans for 2016. Yeap. Big. BIG!

Well, there’s definitely going to be more book reviews…

You’ll probably also be subjected to more doggie stories not just because I can’t keep those to myself but…

Because there’s a rumour going around this place that we might be getting a puppy.

Now the idea wasn’t only mine! Really. Hubby is practically obsessed with the thought. He has been looking at sites and checking out breeders to find one that’s both reputable and trustworthy in his quest to find Ocean and River just the right baby brother or sister.

Now, I know we already have two dogs and that’s plenty. I know two dogs are a lot of work and we’re already busy. I really, honestly know that getting a third would only add chaos to our already dog-crowded house…but the idea of getting a puppy for our two fluff balls just melts my heart.

I fear I might not put up a lot of resistance…

And yes, absolutely, some where in 2016, I should get my act in gear and move forward with my own writing. I do have some ideas on that front too.

Comments? Thoughts? Anything you’d like to see…or would like to never see again? Anything you’re sick of? Curious about? Let me know! I’d love to hear from you!

Weekend Ramblings

It’s Saturday morning, I have my beloved cup of coffee and a croissant in front of me and things haven’t looked this good all week. Is there anything better than a lazy weekend morning?

We’re getting snow. I can tell not just by the weather report, the dogs are going nuts with glee. These are most definitely snow dogs. If I ever had any doubts, the last couple of days confirmed it. It’s getting colder and colder and the more the temperature drops, the more they like to go out. At night, when it’s pitch dark and freezing, I can’t get them in the house. I plead, beg and finally promise them treats to get them indoors. Today, early in the morning with the layer of frost, they couldn’t wait to wake me and get out there to do whatever it is you do when you’re a snow dog.

On other news, we finally got more earth for the poor plant that Ocean was eating away. I don’t know if I shared this, but her royal fluffiness likes to eat dirt, as in earth and, instead of eating it from the earth on the ground outside, she likes it from our poor plant. She’s already responsible for the death of a former plant of ours and she’s working towards killing this new one. I’ve gotten more dirt for it but it’s only more delicious treats in Ocean’s mind.

I haven’t started Christmas shopping. In fact, I try to avoid it at all costs. Instead, the last few years, I’ve been donating money to a charity of my choice. I also don’t expect any gifts back, since I don’t give them out.

I thought it was the greatest idea when I heard it. We have no kids, why are we buying presents? Well, I hadn’t counted on lovely Hubby. When I mentioned my plan to him, I swear he almost fainted. No presents? You’d think I’m asking him to donate his liver or something. So, now I try to minimize his presents but no one else gets any. Instead, I find I look around and search for a charity that I really care about this year. It might be the Humane Society, the Salvation Army, a reading group for children…anything as long as they’re doing something good for others. And they get what I would normally spend on presents. It honestly feels much better than trying to guess what bath product I can give to my friends.

Finally, our old toilet died and we’ve replaced it. We have an awesome handy guy (more like a friend) who comes in and helps us out by fixing whatever needs doing in our home. He’s name is Shane and he’s tall, lanky and super kind. The sort of person you’re so glad you meet because you realize what a treasure they are.

We tried to find a replacement for our old toilet but I never knew there were so many choices.  From flushing to water usage to shape of bowl to height of said bowl to colour to the gods only know what else. After a while, staring at all the toilets at the store, my head started to swim. All I wanted was one that worked. Somehow that seemed too easy a condition.

Completely bewildered, we let our trusty Shane make the very important decision and off we went.

Turns out Shane is very tall because he has impossibly long legs. So, as well as very new and clean, our toilet is high. As in very high. As in leg-dangling above the ground high.

So now we’re looking for a foot rest.