Friday, April 30, 2010

Our trip to the vet!

You may remember Mum talking about Wiggy and how he had the Big D and was throwing up. Well, just a few days later Gracie came down with the Big D too!

We talked with our new vet, and our local house call vet, and they think Gracie came down with Giardia (it's a nasty little bug that is transmitted via feces and in streams that contain feces from other infected pups). Mum remembered that Gracie had had a nice drink of water the day before from the stream that separates the two big pastures down the ridge. Mum did the usual stuff...fasted her for 12 hours, then started giving her boiled chicken and rice, but it just kept coming, and then started turning red, OMD! Blood in stool, not good. We're beginning to wonder if we need to look into life insurance rates for the Gracie, just kidding, of course!

We got some meds for Gracie, and then just as she as getting well, you won't believe what happened. She got it again?

Mum was working with me and the Grace-ster on some tricks near the fenced in horse pasture, which is up the ridge from the stream. Well, I broke my stay, ooooopss!, and took off for a squirrel down the ridge with Gracie right on my heels.

Mum ran down the ridge, got Gracie in her sights about 300 feet away, called her and she came running for Mum. Mum was proud! Until....Mum was going to put her in a sit, and give her a treat, but Gracie, you see, had that stream on her mind because she was hot and needed to cool off and get a nice big drink of water. She ran full throttle around behind Mum and plopped her belly right into that stream, and started drinking her face off. Sheesh! I would have at least gone for the treat first, silly girl.

So Gracie had to take meds again.

Gracie got well very quickly after the second set of meds, thank DOG, but Mum thought it was time to get us all a good annual checkup, make sure we didn't have any other lurking bugs, get me a chiro adjustment, get us all titers, and an update on our three year rabies shot, she made an appointment with our new holistic vet. That following Wednesday all five of us piled into the Rover and headed to the University of Tennessee in Knoxville for our annual checkups.

We thought it somewhat odd that Mum booked us for a three hour appointment on the recommendation of Dr. Raditic, our new vet. But we did need a good checkup and stuff, and all that takes time.

Just that morning about an hour before we were to leave, Mum went to take a shower and found out we had no water. So Mum got some water from the fridge, and some water from our neighbor, and took a sponge bath. We ended up being late for our appointment, but they were super nice about it.

Mum unloaded the kitties and then came back to the car and got us. Then we finally got to meet our new vet, Dr. Raditic, and she helped carry the kitties, while Mum grabbed us to head for the exam room.

The kitties went first since they get very edgy waiting and are prone to get nasty during the checkup if they have to wait too long. Mum was so proud of both of them, they sat quietly in their crates with the tops off (well, pretty much anyway) while they got checked out. Wiggy is now 11 years old, and Wolfie is 12, so they are getting on in years. But Dr. R said they looked super good, in great health, may need some help with their teeth (which we have a plan for), but they passed with flying colors.

Then it was my turn and Gracie's turn. They drew blood for the titers, which came back great, so we didn't have to get any shots except our three year rabies. Both of us got a chiro adjustment, and we talked at length about our diet, and the kitties diet. Since now we have a source for most of our organic meats and veggies (we're going to be writing about that next week on Raise A Green Dog, we'll be getting back to our raw diet pretty soon.

Dr. R has been feeding her 'crew' raw for a long time and had some great ideas about how we could plan some menus, percentages, and more. We are going to be taking some Omega 3's and some vitamins. Mum is also putting me and Gracie on a different glucosamine supplement, since the last one didn't agree with our tummies. She also said our teeth look spectacular (puffy chest:)!

Since I have been through some major injuries, Dr. R and Mum talked a lot about how to help me. Mum has had a theory for a while now about why I keep getting tight in my iliopsoas after pulling it a couple of years ago.

I don't know if I ever told you, but when I was just about one year old I was attacked by another dog. He took a big chunk out of my backside, so they had to stitch me up from hip to hip in an X pattern. Over the course of healing there was this one spot that, no matter how much Mum rubbed away, the skin layers just wouldn't separate correctly.

She told Dr. R about this and so Dr. R checked me out and yep, just as Mum suspected, Dr. R thinks that's why I pull and get tight in my groin area too. She said it's kind of like if you wrapped a piece of Saran Wrap around my lower back and groin, and then took a portion of the wrap just left of my spine and twisted it - that's what my skin feels like, why I get off kilter all the time, why those muscles back there get tight, and why, sometimes, I'll favor the left side by turning a bit that way.

So Mum and Dr. R talked a long time about how they could both help me stay loose and flexible in that area, since surgery to unfuse the layers wouldn't be an option. Dr. R gave Mum some massage techniques beyond what she had already been doing, and will be giving Mum more as she learns more. Dr. R even gave us a cool chart and made notes on it for Mum.

Have to say the new exercises and massage techniques, in addition to the ones Mum was already doing, are helping a lot.

They also talked about iliopsoas pulls in general since Dr. R has seen them a lot in her practice, and why they happen. It was a great talk and Mum learned a lot. We're just glad that we have a good plan of action.

We got to go to an agility drop in class (more on that later) the following week and Mum worked with me well before and after running with warm up, cool down, and a good massage when we got home. Had no tightness at all from the class.

After the exam, we loaded up in the car and headed home. It was a pretty full day, but Mum was proud of all of us. Even the kitties didn't let out much of a peep during the entire trip! And Wiggy is a known howler from way back!

We sure want to thank Dr. R for everything. We actually had fun going to the vet, what's up with that! Oh and we got to do some tricks for her, that was fun too :)

Hope you all have a super weekend! We're hoping it doesn't rain too much, so we can get some good hiking in.


  1. Wow, I am sure glad that everybody is ok now! My gosh that was scary!

    Emma Rose

  2. Hey Johann, that does sort of, almost, sound like a fun trip. your Dr. looks like she is real nice, too. Glad everything went well!
    Your pals, Morgan & Maisie

  3. Dang it Mum! You think you could do better with opposable thumbs, but you accidentally deleted one of my friend comments!

    Sorry Diana - Mum is so all thumbs sometimes...

    Here's your comment and thank you!

    "I'm so glad all the animals are feeling better. Your vet sounds great!"

  4. Glad you all had such a successful trip to your new vet and found her to be really nice and helpful!

    Will Gracie build up some immunity or something to the giardia (is that even possible?) because it's going to be so hard to keep her out of the stream, especially in the summer!


Thanks for barking in!

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