What’s that I hear?…Kenai 22 mo
I put up a pic from Kenai’s last outside playtime, since he’s not going to get one of those today, unless he gets to feeling better. It’s a great shot of his boy wrinkles, there on his head, isn’t it? The best place, THE best place for smoochies is right smack (sorry ’bout the pun) in the middle of those soft rolly wrinkles on the forehead!
His Saturday started off good and went bad when the vet started drawing up the needle. Oh he hates needles, my toffee toodles. And this was a nasty shot too; Imizol burns something feirce. Bless his heart, he stood still for it until almost the end. He cried and tried to crawl under the bench. Aww.
Doc rubbed the devil out of the spot for him, and I rubbed his ears but it hurt, and stung for a solid 20 minutes. And he couldn’t even reach to scratch the site, though I thought he’d get stuck in that position he tried so hard. Nasty shot, nasty, nasty. Poor baby.
And to make matters worse for a little boy, when the stinging stopped, the nausea started. He drooled worse than his brother, which he doesn’t like to do (he’s neat by nature). BB is the worst slobberin dog I’ve ever had, and I met my first Dane when I was 2 days old.
But Kenai isn’t a drooler, even licking his lips clean when he is drooling or cleaning off his own legs. He slobbered buckets for over an hour, didn’t want to lay down for more than a few minutes and then ran to the door. Die in the rears came next.
Kenai’s after shot pooky shot…complete with smushie lips. I wasn’t fast enough to get a shot of the donkey ears, but he surely did give me donkey ears. That’s when they turn backwards and lean slightly towards the neck. It looks like a displeased donkey, hence the name.
I hated to do that to him, but he’s been through 3 rounds of doxacycline for the Ehrlichia, yet is still symptomatic with high titers. At least it’s only 2 shots spread out by 14 days. He’s half done with the nasty. He’ll be on doxy as well for 14 days at least. 14 days sounds better than 112 pills, so that’s what I’m going with.
He was just the saddest pitiful you ever saw, poor little one. Perked up for a 1/2 meal, wanting more, but not until I knew whether or not he would throw up. That would make for a goshes awful trifecta, so it was half meals every 3 hours with carafate in between. Lots of gentle touches and love all the way through, of course.
I do have a potent anti-nausea/vomiting shot from the vet here at home, but of all things, it burns too so we tried everything to not need it. Two nasties in one day would make me cry with him. I could make a grown man cry and tell him to suck it up, but a puppy yelp wimps me out on the spot. Guess that rules out becoming a vet tech?
We finally went down for a nap mid afternoon, once I was sure he wasn’t going to barf or have the smelly kind of “accident”. It was a sorrowful Saturday for my sweet love, happy things like toys and playtime of no interest to him. I stayed up with him all night, so I could get him out if he needed.
Kenai was better Sunday, and we spent our time wisely–snuggles and blankie monster games and a bit of “find me” under the covers. There’s something fun about a camel’s nose under a “tent”! It was a sweet Sunday morning, to make up for the sorrowful Saturday.
I even splurged on making lobster tails for dinner, and gave him a couple tiny tiny little nibbles after dipping it in butter. Kenai adores lobster. He loves it so much, the nose is after it while it’s frozen, and the nose rests on the microwave door waiting for it cook.
I don’t let him outright mooch, but once he sighs the sigh of resignation I will give him a nibble. If I ever inheirit a fortune from a wayward Great Aunt Marsh we don’t know about, I’ll be sure we have a vacation home in Maine so we can indulge our weakness together more a couple times a year.
Monday’s always start off with a trip to Dr Susan’s for accupuncture, but the rainy raw weather curtailed any fun outside. We just curled up and lazed away the day. Sweet times make it better.
Posted by greatdaneservicedog on October 26, 2009
There’s my sweetie…Kenai 22 mo
Kenai had a most eventful Monday, starting with his accupuncture session at 8 am. Dr Susan’s place has lots of lady friends, but he really only agrees to go because of the rescued kittens in the boarding window…
He also got to pee in a cup for them–urinalysis showed he’s still not concentrating urine, though the kidneys were not in trouble. We came home for awhile, tucking Mom back into bed after needing nausea medicine, BB at the foot of the bed. We had the house to ourselves almost all morning.
That meant…PLAY time having room to fling and ring his Dino with abandon. We devastated a soda pop carton, too, and got the glorious bubble wrap. Oh that bubble wrap is gobs of boy fun ya know–it pops when the sasquatch paw pins it down, it pops in his lips, and pops louder when I steal it and give a good squeeze. FUN!
After a bit of a break from the toys to rest, it was outside to RUN ‘N PLAY in the sunshine. The weather was lovely, the sun was out, the breeze was down, the ground was just damp enough to be soft. What more could a boy ask for?
This is how the majority of Kenai’s “action pics” go, showcasing my lack of skill. My spotless cheetah can run faster than the camera can work!
He’s having a ball rip snortin through the two clumps of Johnson’s Grass I’ve allowed to live. From the very beginning, my golden gorrilla had a love affair with high grass and hiding places.
When he found his jolly ball hiding in a clump, he gave it a fling and a thoroughly enthusiastic polar bear pounce, too. Sunshine is contagious…
The see me see you ambush puppy here just waiting for a foot stomp from me to pillage his way around the kennel so I can try to grab his tushie.
All in a day’s FUN…
Then the car ride came, after getting Mom up. Feeling so punky, BB was silly protective of her, and got his worried boy self in some hot water with me, his “crazy aunt”.
He justs gets overwrought sometimes, when Mom isn’t feeling well. He gets all bonkers trying to keep you away from her, bumping and even pulling your clothes.
Kenai just walks away from him, but I’m not going to–I have to get her up and there’s no reason I can’t touch her. I was here first little boy! Beebs settled down a bit, and I got them all situated in the living room so Kenai and I could leave.
The car ride was to our “primary care” vet. Kenai needed his rabies shot, and a check of the tick titers. We’re going to try a drug called Imizol in conjunction with the doxacycline. It just won’t clear up. And I need to pin the vets down on an immune system supplement for him this time.
Tuesday I’d planned on getting my hair cut and coming home, since I wasn’t feeling great. I love hair cuts; they make ya feel all new and shiny. But it didn’t go so simple–Mom came along and the errand list grew as she thought of things to do. Uhg.
But Kenai had himself a 4 hour ride, which he mostly enjoyed. We came home and crashed, snoozing big time. When I woke up, BB was standing there looking at me laying on the bed–what’s ya doing, can I get on the bed too? So I stuck my foot up to tickle his whiskers for him.
One thing led to another, as it does with BB…first he wanted to sniffle the sock, but it wiggled under his lips. Then he wanted to nibble the sock, but it wiggled into his ear. (Butt wags at this point). He got the tip of the sock in his little front nibble teeth and started to pull, but the sock poked a toe in his nose! FUN!
This molestation continued as long as BB could remain calm enough (not long), then it became an all out game of get-the-sock-off. Chase it back it forth, up and down, backwards and forwards. When he finally did get it (slipped it over my heel so it didn’t tear), we had a fine example of the BB prance.
The BB prance is like no other doggie prance in the world–neck arched, ears wrinkled, snorting, and bunny hopping just close enough to tease you. That’s normal, but the bent bottoms does this funny little wiggle walk, like a belly dancer trying to run away!
He pranced for me, he teased his brother, he paraded for Mom. The prance in enhanced, BTW, if you goose his bottoms when he isn’t expecting it, FUNNER…Kenai was sitting there watching all this with a look on his face–”doesn’t he know ya only play steal the sock in the bathroom? Jeez I have to teach him everything…”
Then BB made the innocent mistake of getting up on the couch next to Mom with the sock. Oh, one must watch the grammy when she has that grin. Trusting little BB let her take the sock and put it on his own footie, and oh the goofy came out all over the place.
For some reason, everytime he pulled on the sock, it made his leg jump up too!! Off the couch, bobble about, hike the front leg, pull harder and hike the leg higher. My howling at the silly pup made Kenai decide he needed in on the fun, and he stuffed his huge Dino baby on top of my head.
Peering out from between stuffed Dino legs, BB was still flapping his leg around without knowing why, and making snuffle noises at it. Aggravated puppy is FUNNEST. Beebs has this personality that says–that was terribles, do it again! So we did.
The other sock got tossed to Mom and it went on BB’s other front leg. Anyone that has the imagination to visualize a dog in a one-legged burlap sack race can “watch” the fun we were having at his expense! His already goofy gait was transformed into BB quality hysterics.
Eventually the wiggle worm figured out he could get the sock off if he laid down, and the funnies were over. Mostly. Good thing too, because Kenai had decided I needed some smushing to include him in the Play, so I had a big ol toffee tank laying on top of me. I rumpled his ears and smooched his boy wrinkles.
Wednesday morning Kenai woke me up at 5 am, very too hungry boy. The cooler weather makes a boy hungry. So we boiled up his meat, and mixed in the enzymes. Then he had to wait 30 minutes. Goshes. So we had a little “practice” with a nibble of hamburger, and a very few liver treats.
Then it was get ready and be off in the car. This time I wised up and we went to my doctor’s appt by ourselves. If I decided to make a stop it’d be ’cause I had the legs for it. Well, I did, for one tiny little stop at the puppy store–taking back an unopened bag of kibble. Not to mention a bit of a social visit.
Once we’d spent some time with his lady friends, we headed home for lunch and a nap. With no plans to go anywhere again until Friday or Saturday, I settled in for a bit of much needed rest time.
Posted by greatdaneservicedog on October 21, 2009
It’s touching me…Kenai 22 mo
The new week started off with an accupuncture session for Kenai, and his weigh in. He always acts nervous when the needles are picked up, but he’s drowsy relaxed 5 minutes after they’re all in. Then the ‘all done’ comes, and he’s perky pup–leanie loves for Dr Susan, trotting out to the lobby, play bowing to the rescued kittens in the boarding window.
So BOY was feeling a little better for a couple days, and had car rides every day but Thursday. He doesn’t like being left in the car much, I don’t like leaving him much, but he’s always happy to hop in and go. We even have a chase me chase you game in the garage.
I try to get at least one stop in where he can get out, even if it’s just getting out in the parking lot to say hello to someone who stopped me to talk about him. He’s been pretty outgoing for a few days, happy to greet new people again. Noises still make him jumpy, but the accupuncture really does give him a boost of confidence.
Talos the Great Dane SD candidate http://smartdog.typepad.com/smart_dog/ is learning to wait, and his puppy raiser made a very interesting and almost counterintuitive point: adding the verbal cue, ie saying “wait”, after he’s mastered the behavior.
I’m not entirely sure why. I suppose I could guess, and if I was to guess I’d say it was to make certain the word never has a history of not getting the behavior. I’m also guessing that’s part of the technique called “shaping”, where the dog learns to figure out what you want on their own.
Makes sense to think about, but certainly not what most people do. Luckily I’ve about half managed to learn to say a command only once (I fail occasionally). Yabbering a word at a dog that’s ignoring you makes the word useless, really.
The first attempt at working with Kenai when he was little without talking made me acutely aware that we two leggeds are extrordinarily verbal creatures. I had this “well how do I let him know what I want” feeling, and it was pretty strange, lemme tell ya.
After all, he can’t read so post it notes are out of the question.
I found out pretty fast that yes, dogs are acutely aware that we want something from them. Our new desire for something translates into very subtle body language, and even changes in our smell from different hormones/chemicals inside our bodies. Dogs pick up fast on non-verbal communication.
I imagine it would be just as odd a feeling to teach a dog to wait without saying wait the first few times a person tried. Those of us who’ve trained dogs before typically learned in standard classes to teach the dog the action and the word at the same time, using luring. (Nose follow the treat to sit).
The post about Talos inspired me to shape up my non-verbal communication. If dog training had a set of sacred ten commandments, ”thou shalt not yabber” would have to be up for consideration. After awhile I slide back into yabber lady, not so much while training but just going about our day together.
Dr Susan has found a supplement for the “management of stress related behaviors” in dogs. Anxiety is actually pretty common in dogs these days–the whys are way beyond me to diagnose, though I have a few amatuer theories. Whatever the reasons, anxiety behaviors can be difficult to live with, and distressing for a loving owner.
The active ingredient is called Relora, originally a human supplement, and the dog supplement is packaged under the name Harmonese. I’ve started taking the Relora too from a human supplement company–test it out on myself before giving it to the boys.
Relora has almost no sedative/drowsy effect at all, which I really like. Yet it chills BB out. He’s very much still BB, but with less octane to fly off the handle. Many dogs, like BB, have things that just make them bonkers and it’s very hard to watch the pup you love be all freaked out and panicky.
For alot of dogs, reconditioning (changing a fearful situation into a calm one) is a long tough task. I wouldn’t put BB on prescription meds for anxiety, but this supplement doesn’t worry me. It’s been thoroughly tested both in humans and dogs and has no unwanted side effects to speak of.
Exercise and interactive play is also some of the best ways to reduce anxiety and frustration in dogs. Just like for us, huh? The endorphins released, the bonding that makes them feel more secure all can relax a dog, making it easier to face something that makes them nervous.
The relora works a little better for BB than it does me though–Saturday’s trip to Sam’s was bad. To accomodate the weakness of CFS and pain of FMS I have to make several trips on different days before the shopping list is finished. And I never handle crowded places well.
But next week is stacking up in the must-do department, so I went to Sam’s on a Saturday. And Mom doesn’t even start getting dressed before 9 am, 2-3 hours after I wake her up. Her schedule and mine clash like dogs and cats. We left the house at 10 am.
Oh boy, never again. Piled up shopping carts, running kids, and irritable people all cram around you, cut you off and any other rude thing they can do without thinking. Mom goes oblivious to the fact that her parking right there to see this or that trapped me in the worst possible situations.
People need to come out of ailes on both left and right of me, several trying to all at the same time, and the nudge behind me is letting her kids hit my power cart as they run around. Mom’s cart is too close to go around and she’s a few paces off reading some label.
Reminded me of high school dodge ball in PE. I used to like dodge ball, but that’s before looking in another direction too fast made me dizzy, and the toddler screaming was so loud it was physically painful, not to mention leaves my ears ringing for the rest of the day.
Now that the scene is set…Within 30 minutes the first outright anxiety attack in 8 months was in full swing, and Mom wasn’t getting the point; I need to leave doesn’t mean an hour later. By the time I was out of there, I was literally shaking all over and using a rescue inhaler. I was too dizzy from the roaring in my ears to drive.
Then I had to deal with the way too many groceries Mom kept buying when I got home. She doesn’t realize that buying them means they have to be carried in from the car and put away? Buying in bulk for 2 people means lots of splitting up into serving sizes, at the end of a long painful shopping trip.
The whole experience drove home that no matter how long Mom’s watched me learn to cope with various problems, the reality of them and their absolute limitations don’t really sink in because they aren’t hers. They haven’t altered how she views things, like a shopping trip.
Not that I really think I can expect her to, certainly not demand. But I should have taken into consideration that she doesn’t, maybe cannot, understand what seems simple to her is not for me. And waited for another day to go by myself. Shopping’s full of difficulties and even dangers for me, whereas it’s not for her.
So I view shopping with the idea of reducing the duration, the tonnage to be hauled around afterwards, and choosing the least crowded/noisy time to do it. My perception of something as run of the mill as grocery shopping is drastically different than a “normal” healthy persons’.
And that’s why I’m rattling on about it–how desperately I wanted Kenai the Calm of way long ago to be standing there full sized and heavy muscled. His presence to calm me, his strength to steady me, his formidable looking profile and dignified aura to snap the inattentive back to awareness.
(I wouldn’t have let him pick out a roast for us, though he’s plenty tall enough to sniff all the way to the back of the rack!)
A grocery run isn’t an necessary annoyance amongst a 10 hour day of running around for me, as it is for busy moms and tired mechanics on the way home after work. It’s the personal equivalent of the war in Iraq, and I so wanted a furry golden hummer with me as protective armor.
After having to abandon the dream of Kenai the SD, at least until his soundness of body is regained, when I see someone with an SD, going places and doing things because they now can, I feel both a tinge of selfish sadness, but mostly joy for them.
It’s lovely to see, and I never fail to whisper a prayer for the brave person stepping out with trust in a fantastic dog. They live with a gigantic blessing who happens to wag a tail, however small the pup may be!
The horrible trip to Sam’s resulted in a happy thing: a puppy splurge
The new BB bear baby waiting for Beebs to see. He went gaga for it! It’s impossible to get a pic of him playing–he’s congenitally unable to hold still long enough to get anything but a blur. He flinged and flung and drug it all over creation for the better part of an hour. I could almost hear the “yabba dabba do” from his puppy heart! What a boy, BB is.
Kenai wasn’t left out, getting the green dino baby in the top of the post pic. He loooovvveesss giant babies, almost as much as he does the tiny ones. His Dino got the fling n ring treatment too, followed by hauling it up on the couch to use for a pillow/bottle to suckle on.
This pic was his Dino wake up call after the nap–touching the tush. The new toys, and ensuing rough n rumpus play put their happy faces on for the entire day Saturday. Kenai was tail wagging and bright eyed, all over content with life.
Boys and their toys...yabba dabba doo!
My yabba dabba do Saturday night was spent eating pain pills and resolving never ever again to go anywhere on weekends, especially with Mom! Poor Kenai, he glued to my hip and just hung out a wee bit closer than normal, even after the anxiety had passed. Love bud, my Kenai.
Then he stuffed his Dino in my lap to play with him. “All over ma, it’s you and me, I love ya”. I love you back sweetie…
Posted by greatdaneservicedog on October 17, 2009
Kenai and his blankie games 22 mo
Kenai is enjoying his morning play times, pretending to be Linus with his blankie. He’s been dragging it along while batting around a tennis ball all week, silly guy. And we’ve had a glut of cardboard boxes for him to tear up, which has made his boy heart happy.
With his continuing die in the rears, he isn’t getting bones, and he isn’t getting training treats. I fudged once and felt so bad for the boy when it was potty time. Our play times are foodless, boneless affairs for awhile. Hence, the cardboard boxes and play-as-reward training spells.
He stares up at the top of the tv where his bestest bones sit and wait for him. Oh the pitiful…so he’s got tennis ball times, and Linus blankies, and horsing around in the dirty laundry to keep him entertained. I may have to abandon the laundry games, after finding toothie holes.
Now that the weather is changing to fall, the furnace has replaced the AC, and ’tis the time of the dry skin dander fest. Some people have beer fests, dog owners have dander fests. So I’ve pulled out the Head and Shoulders shampoo/conditioner. It works very well for dander, as well as pretty much any itchy skin problem in dogs–folliculitis, fungal infections, yeast overgrowths etc.
As the boys hate all out lather and rinse bucket baths, I’ve developed a “baby bath” routine for them–a shampoo wetted rag rubbed on every boy part. H&S doesn’t really have to be rinsed off like other shampoos and soaps. In fact, leaving a bit of the sudsy treats the skin (it has zinc in it)
The rag gets rinsed and relathered, rather than the fussy babies, when it’s baby bath time. BB actually thinks it’s great, like some funny smelling massage. Kenai? He puts up with it. When they get really messy, mud from stem to stern, then they have to endure the bucket woman.
I get the donkey ears and droopy faces for a “real” bath, and despite how funny it is, I try to take pity on them. The rag gets them clean most of the time, to their relative satisfaction. Nevermind Kenai’s “I smell like a girl” reaction…
Thursday I hit the Sam’s club, discovering I could buy an 80 lb case of ground beef for just $1.54/lb rather than the family packs at the grocery for $1.99/lb When I get some grocery money, I’ll go back for veggies and non-perishables.
We don’t have tons of pantry space, but we do have 2 chest freezers in the garage, so there’s plenty of room for things that can be frozen. The case of meat should last a couple weeks, so I don’t have to go to the store every few days.
The store runs were wearing me slick. Getting around’s getting harder for me, durn it. To combat the worsening issues, I’ve started a cortisol controlling supplement. It lessens my body’s overreactions to stress and strain. Sometimes it can feel like your body hijacks you, doing what it wants and taking you along for the ride!
That’s just part of the fibromyalgia–the pituitary/hypothalmus/adrenal glands go haywire and these endocrine system problems affect every system in the body, from metabolism to anxiety. The fibro flares set off the autoimmune diseases, then the opportunistic illnesses like chronic Lyme start up when the immune system goes wonky.
It’s a chain reaction, and getting better means you have to climb up each link in the chain again, hand over hand. Claw over claw is more accurate. It can be done, but promise ya it takes longer to feel better than it does to go down. This downturn has been 18 months long and counting.
BB’s had a rough week, but his playful personality is irrepressible. Beebs is bumping and wiggling and grinning all the same, die in the rears notwithstanding. I almost got them these huge stuffed animals at Sam’s, and may yet go back. They’re big as the boys–can you imagine the flinging?!
I was looking forward to Friday’s training time. It’s sort of like a surprise package–I never know what we’re going to work on, or even sure which of the Brothers Grin will have their “time in the sun” until its time to go. They both love “playin with Lisa” time, no clue that they’re actually training.
We’ve had some 10″ of rain so the training session had to be cancelled. It’s rained so hard that even if it had rained cats and dogs, the boys wouldn’t be asking to go out! They zoom out, pee under the nearest tree, and zip back in for their dry off games. It’s the only time they don’t dawdle outside!
Boy I can really tell the seasons are changed–I’m thinking about apple crisp, and added cinnamon and cloves to today’s pinapple upside down cake. Hot chocolate is replacing milkshakes in my don’t-I-wish list, and hot tea is taking over from iced tea.
The fluffy sweaters and layering clothes are out, and the thermostat’s being turned down (gradually, mind you). I love cooler weather, and so do the boys. 45-65 degrees is the ideal temperature span, brisk enough to invigorate, and warm enough not to make puppy slobber-cicles freezing on fences!
I was disappointed for them that we didn’t have our weeking training, but there’s always next week. And with any luck the AT&T truck will go away–everytime I see them at the end of the road, I know I’m in for a frustrating time trying to get online. I have to connect and disconnect until getting 24 kb/second or better, just to get explorer to open. Urg!
Posted by greatdaneservicedog on October 12, 2009