Good morning beautiful sunshine! Kenai 3 yrs
The Big K and Little Bro BB are in boy heaven these days; in and out as they please, not too hot, not too cold (is it ever too cold when you have a fur coat?). I’ve gotten Mom to dine, achem, al fresco on the back deck a couple times, and have the windows et all opened up most of the day.
There is a bit of trouble in paradise though, with Kenai in particular. Three weeks of doxycycline for the tick diseases has resulted in the absolute worst, most distressing side effect of all: anorexia.
Big guy won’t eat. He won’t touch the raw food at all, and will only eat small amounts of kibble if I gussy it up some. Since he cannot digest kibble at all, he has to have enzymes with it, and his coat invariably goes to pot. But it’s that or…
So I’ve bit down on the bullet and ordered some elk, venison, and goat meat from an online company. It doesn’t contain bone, so I’ll have to scavange about for ground bone, but if they eat it and do well, I hope it’ll be worth it. www.elkusa.com
If I even get Kenai to eat half raw/half kibble, that would be a major improvement. He does need off the kibble though. He can’t digest it, it gives him tummy troubles, the works. It took months for the anorexia to wear off last time. Hope it’s shorter this time.
Being the big time outdoorsman that he is, Kenai is mentally pretty darn perky with the whole lotta extra fresh air and sunshine!
Morning or evening, he just loves to stretch those legs. And cold doesn’t bother him until it gets blistering frigid.
Thankfully our winters aren’t usually so chronically bad that the golden grizzly has to “hibernate”. You northern folks know what I mean: out to pee, in for the day.
My health hasn’t improved much, so the outside time doesn’t involve gardening, but such is life…I’m managing to keep the guys fed, exercised, and dinner for us. Sometimes the sweeper or carpet cleaner, but really, not much by way of activity for moi.
Mom made the mistake of letting both guys out together (Kenai! You dont’ run doors), so I had to go collar and fetch. Beebs was looking for rescue too. He’d made the mistake of thinkin that was gonna be fun, free together at last.
Kenai’s play is fairly vigorous, so Beebs got the thunk and wunk treatment, knocked down once before I got there. Droopy ears was happy to see me! Kenai collared up fine and walked very politely with me, and booby butt tagged along behind best as his sore spots could go…poor guy!
No harm done though, other than being a bit more sore and slow than usual. Some traumeel did the trick and he’s back to bouncy butt now. He still wants outside, just not with big bro. Alone isn’t fun either. Crazy auntie and a ball is his idea of the best!
last light, time to go in…BB 3 yrs old
Posted by greatdaneservicedog on September 28, 2011
lovely weather for a fella to be outside in! Kenai 3 yrs.
I think fall is here (unless saying so jinxed it)! Monday we were 1 degree shy of triple digits, and the next day we barely made it out of the 50′s F! The Brothers feel PERKY! The drastic change isn’t playing well with my fibromyalgia, but it is with the boys for sure.
I’ve been worryin a bit about BB–his abdomen seemed too full last weekend, and I could feel the segments of colon, so I’ve been giving him small amounts of mineral oil as a stool softener. It’s seemed to do the job, and he’s not as restless and uncomfie.
Kenai’s been in a hidey hole or outside while I deep clean the carpets. I only do small areas at a time, like one bedroom which took 4 hours, but I wouldn’t quit until the rinse water was clear. It’s hard work so I hope I make myself keep up with it rather than let it all get so grungy again.
With the boy’s and my skin being so sensitive, rather than use the chemical-laden solutions for the machine I soak the carpet with All Free n Clear sensitive skin laundry detergent solution and sprinkle Borax on it. Then I use the shampooer like a shop vac to get all the dirty water out, and rinse, rinse, rinse.
No body’s had any rashes or itches, so the idea worked.
Kenai’s been showing more pain, being in his second week of treatment for Rocky Mountain Spotted fever. And when BB starting spiking fevers too, he got slapped on doxycycline too.
Poor guys, the extra pain means the antibiotics are working but I hate to see them nibble their legs. I know they’re hurting, so I’ve added a homeopathic pain reliever called Traumeel to their medicine “cabinet”. It helps at least.
One thing they are both enjoying is the cooking frenzy all this cold weather’s set off: beef stew, lasagna, homemade mac n cheese, roast beef…oh the smells of winter comfort food! The noses are in the air, and I think they seem to understand a little about seasons.
At least as much as what gets cooked when will stick as an association for them. Cool = yummy stuff.
Just you wait little boys, till I cook my first corned beef and cabbage of fall! They love that stuff, would willingly take their scoldings for mooching it too!
A funny (sorta) trivia about corned beef is the preservative, potassium nitrate, is also used in fertilizers, stump killers, and gun powder…Still love corned beef, even if I’m eating stump killler.
Come tomorrow, I’ll have 5 cases of Bravo Raw Beef Blend for the fellas. It’s essentially the ingredients for a beef stew plus bone and liver, all ground up. It’s got the carrots, and the veggies all in there, just like mine only raw.
It does tend to give them loose stools, so I occasionally add a tiny bit of digestive enzymes too take care of that. Their coats and muscle tone just plain do best on red meats. I still miss that discontinued elk they did so well on, though.
BB’s harrasment of Kenai had stopped for a long time, but now he’s at it again. I wonder if his feeling poorly has made him more insecure so he’s gone hyper again? They do need more exercise, which means I need to spend time outside with them. Maybe that’d do the trick?
Here’s the back view of a BB gallopol…what a funny butt.
I got my lovely wool blend sweaters out, so I don’t have an excuse outside of lazy I guess. I’m being treated for tick diseases too, and mine’s brutal.
I have this tendency to malaise when I really feel rotten. Still, it’d be fun to play get your tush and see the zoomies.
Maybe that’s going up in the to-do list?
Posted by greatdaneservicedog on September 15, 2011
things’ll be getting clean now…
I finally have a carpet shampooer! I spent a day last week getting all the carpets in the house clean-er, rested a couple days, then spent a whole day in the 2 bedrooms getting the carpets clean clean. 4 hours for each, after 5 mo of grunge accumulation.
The carpet formulas don’t work very well, I found. So I soaked/scrubbed with a bucket and rag the bedroom carpets with laundry detergent and borax. Then I sucked that all up with the machine and used plain water to rinse until it came all clean. Wow do the bedrooms look better!
Next will be the living room, which means staying up until I can run Mom off to bed. I’m hoping for 11 pm. It will take most of the night to do and dry the rest of the way so the boys can be on it the next day.
Kenai reacts to the machine as expected: hunts a hidey hole! Silly boy.
The weather has definitely turned fall like, so boys o boys are outside alot. Kenai invariably barks, so I’m making him wait until a decent hour to go out, ie not before 6:30 am. Who wants that noise first thing in the morning?
But the 40′s at night and 70′s in the afternoon are prime doggie car ride weather! Kenai went just last night to gas up the car and stop at Braums for a burger and milkshake. One thing he hasn’t done is the lawn mower games, since we haven’t had rain in forever.
Ahhh, a lovely afternoon to be outside for a boy! We’ve not done any garden work, but with the nice weather, the air is off and doors are open.
So its in and out as he wishes! He like that. That’s cool for a golden boy.
A trip to the store is in our future, just for groceries, but he’ll like seeing our bag loading lady. They like each other quite a bit.
Kenai’s been okay without his elk meat, though I wouldn’t call it great. The doxy has at least stopped the break outs of his skin, but the buffalo and the chicken Bravo formulas just aren’t as good. He did better on the beef blend but I’m out until next Friday.
Not to neglect the other half of the Brothers Grin, BB also has his happy weather time! He’s such a goofy gus, and wants nothing more than attention.
Since starting him on the doxy, he too has been better and worse. His fevers are fewer, but at the same time I can tell the RMS tick fever is aggravated by the medicine; he chews at his hock joints like big bro.
Two weeks isn’t going to resolve the infections, that’s for sure. So I’ll be switching my antibiotic to another one and keep refilling my own doxycycline script for him and Kenai.
I’ll leave them on it until the symptoms resolve and give another couple weeks after that. I’ll like to come as close to eradicating the tick bacteria as possible. It’s almost impossible to get rid of it totally, but I’m gonna try.
Don’t want to do this again in a couple months, ya know?
Also since starting the antibiotics, the boys have calmed down about each other! They are rarely seperated by the baby gate anymore, just chillin in the living room, or following me around. The butt sniffing, ding dong smelling gross stuff is dramatically reduced. Whew. I was ready to duct tape their noses!!
I suppose they are just aware of infections in each other before symptoms show up? The nose knows…
Here is a fine good laugh to end with:
Posted by greatdaneservicedog on September 9, 2011
daybreak boy…Kenai 3 yrs
The tick titer’s back, and Kenai’s positive for Rocky Mountain spotted fever. That’s the bad news. But no ehrlichia! That’s the good news. So he’s back on doxycycline like me for as long as his tum can take it. We’re shooting for 14 days, or longer–a couple weeks after symptoms disappear if he can make it.
Hopefully he’ll bounce right back if we caught it early enough, huh?
We’re having what might be the last blast of high heat, so he and little bro both are bored indoor boys. But this weekend and beyond is supposed to be normal weather, and that will mean more outings for them.
Having switched to the beef blend slowly (Bravo raw), BB’s coat has improved alot, and Kenai’s has some. It was a surprise, since they’d had trouble with it in the past. I’ve looked into buying bulk elk meat and it’s pricey, but at least now I know I can if we come to need it again.
So…semi-stable once more, finally.
Being on Facebook so much, naturally I’ve found Dane places. http://www.facebook.com/#!/groups/190601924310411/ is the Dane yard, and it’s lots of fun. Some Dane sites can get really combative about things, but not this one. Lots of good laughs and some funny but questionable Dane antics!
I’ve slowly started removing the baby gate between the guys again, now that BB seems to have calmed down again. He was harrassing Kenai like crazy–wonder if he could tell his brother was sick again before the symptoms became obvious to me. His own kind of alerting?
Laurie is somebody I’ve followed for awhile now, http://smartdog.typepad.com/smart_dog/ and she’s an amazing trainer. She was Talos’ puppy raiser, a now placed Great Dane service dog. If I had half her energy…there’s almost aways something good on her blog or facebook page.
Today will be a big exercise day for my two boys, with the Orkin guy coming between 3 and 5 pm. One will go outside, to reduce the goofy and noisy underfoot action. I’m usually feeling pretty rotten about that time of day, so out with ya boy, whichever is the most unruly (usually BB).
They prefer a good romp outside anyway!
Posted by greatdaneservicedog on September 2, 2011
wake up time!!
Yet another cool morning run for big Brown, there, and car rides galore. He had to stay home with Mom yesterday when I drove to Columbia Missouri, but he got a nap on the bed with me and a ride to the pharmacy to make up for it.
The mornings have been so nice, almost chilly, down in the 60′s that my golden grizzly can’t resist a sunrise run. Then later in the mornings it’s still comfortable enough for him to go places. Yay, he says!
Now that the remodel is all done, there shouldn’t be any more spooky pooky puppy hiding in corners.
They were slowly getting better about the mad barking at every sound, but Sir BraveAlot was seen only when shooting from one hidey hole to another…
BB was just BB; underfoot n in the way.
It’s a warm kitchen, and a very effecient, functional one now. I guess whoever lived there last never made much, but now a girl could do some serious cooking. The storage space has doubled or better with nothing but new cabinets, the appliances are new too.
There was no way Thanksgiving dinner could have come out of that old kitchen, but boy could it now.
And with that ultra dark blood red paint gone, ya might actually want to eat there! Jonquill and Exciting Orange was all it took to give it zing.
Same square footage, whole lot more room and usefulness…
Now that all that’s over, the hope is to return to the usual summertime schedule: up and out to garden with special K, in for a break and breakfast for all, back out to finish the gardening, then rest before lunch.
The trip to Columbia confirmed it: my bizzarely intractable insomnia and worsened pain is due to a recurrence of tick disease. The borrelia is back, as is the babesia, but this time I’ve managed to add Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever and systemic candida overgrowth to the list. Thanks for the tip and motivation to check, Denise.
So I’ve got scripts out the wazoo now. Antibiotics 2 x day, antifungal 4 x day then lessening each week. There’s eye drops, a new thyroid med, and a replacement for that awful expensive Lyrica. And it’s back to the low carb diet.
I go back in 4 months to see if we need to make any changes in the list of 5 antibiotics I’ll be rotating each month. I came home with a huge packet of information, about diet, detoxing from the toxins the cooties give off, adrenal stress etc.
There’s tons to read, and I’m debating about where to place my e-journal–unless it’s written down, it’s lost, ya know? So keeping track of what works, what doesn’t, how the diet changes are going and the like becomes essential for me.
But where? Here on K’s blog? The gardening blog? Do I really want to start a new blog? With 6 mo or more of treatment minimum, it’ll get big.
The battle with the stinky dirty carpet is being lost…There isn’t hair and dander down in it, not with all the vacuming I do and the steaming too. It’s the oils from their coats on the surface. It’s dog stink city in the living room, so yuk, time to do something!
I really must buy a shampoo machine. Those big rug doctors ya rent are just too big and awkward for me, not to mention the results are kinda iffy sometimes.
Grass, grass, glorious grass for a boy to trample. With the rain we’re finally getting, it’s starting once more to grow. Out came the mower and 3 passes into a yard chop, the belt broke. Now why couldn’t it’ve done that the last time I cut? There’d been a month to get it fixed since the heat meant no cutting.
Kenai was heartbroke, all ready for his race to that side of the back yard then back to the other. That’s his game while I cut the front: there I seed you, ha I was waitin! Awww phooey, droopy dog shuffled back inside. He’ll have to wait some more for a cut the grass chase-ems…
Posted by greatdaneservicedog on August 12, 2011
Kenai voicing his opinion about the late lunch!
August is comin’ in like a blast furnace here, as it is in most of the Midwest: 104F or there abouts all week. Finding entertainment for “dwinkle” n “pinkle” is going to start becoming important soon…the baby gate is back up to seperate them, since they’re determined to go charging through the house and harrass each other.
They need exercise. I need them to have exercise!
A good 12 hour nap every day wouldn’t do me any harm either…
I got a tip from Denise at “Hearing Elmo” blog that a Chronic Lyme flare up can set off sleep problems. Smart lady–I’ve been wondering if it was trying to rear its ugly head with the hurting hands and joints, but wouldn’t have put the insomnia in that corner without it being mentioned.
This bout of bugged-eyed sleeplessness has been especially bad, with no end in sight. A bing search turned up a doc in Columbia MO specializing in Lyme and recurrent Lyme. Much closer than the doc in Cleveland I was using when I could make the drive. Columbia is just 2-3 hours away.
So Monday’s list of must do was a trip to the grocery at first light, Kenai in tow naturally, followed by a call to the new doc’s office for a near 911. Big Brown would do well to have a nice outing, bored as he is, and I leave the car running for the AC so he doesn’t overheat.
”Maybe he’ll sleep through the phone call rather than bark at the neighbors” was the hope.
Either he’s not getting the idea of restricting his bark at the neighbor time to outside, or he doesn’t give a fig, can’t decide which (grin). Any car coming or going in the neighborhood sets off the “hounds of Harmonville”.
Truthfully they’ve gotten better about the carrying on when someone comes, so long as they don’t come to the front door. Then it’s a free for all: imagine zoomies with barking and you know. Once somebody’s inside though, they chill out, and often just give a single woof if people come through the garage.
Sometimes I wonder if they just like to hear themselves “talk”? Should Brown run for Congress? (Could he do worse or be noisier than the current litter in DC?) He’d wear a tie without objection, but I have my doubts about the rest of the suit. I’d have to follow him into the men’s room, which might cause a stir, too.
He’d vote for driver’s liscences for dogs, tax any and all cat products, ban “do not walk on the grass” signs, and Service Animals would have carte blanche. He’d also vote for free hamburger, and demand the Senate cafeteria serve everything with real butter. I’d vote for him.
You might be wondering what time it was when I started writing this post, as it’s gettin a little goofy…he he he. Goofy is a way of life when you have Danes!
If this kitchen doesn’t get finished soon I’m gonna be cranky. All but the hood over the range is in and working, but the guys just went off to finish another job. The paint job’s half done, no backsplash, no linen closet, no shelves/lights for seed starting, no lights in the china hutch, no tile behind the range. Grrr.
Uh, Kenny, remember me? Would like to unpack now, since we moved 4 months ago.
I’ve been slowly reducing K’s kibble, making it up with Bravo Raw Elk meat in hopes of slowing the shed n scratch. Dang but I wanted them back on a kibble, for the budget and the ease. They’re doing pretty good, holding weight and until yesterday had normal “leave-behinds”.
But they’re fighting yeast in the ears and toes, and acting like they have bladder infections again. I’ve ordered some oregano oil and colloidal silver, their Kandidaplex yeast killer, and some detoxifying glutathione from http://www.vrp.com/antioxidants/lipoceutical-glutathione
With any luck that will get all the cooties gone.
Their coats are okay, but shedding. Not thinning but shedding, and I’d like to stop that so they are getting an Omega 3, 6, 9 to their Bravo raw each day. I’ll had just a touch of kibble for Kenai since boy likes his crunchies.
Overall, they’re not in bad shape at all, considering what chronic Ehrlichiosis can look like.
Kenai is getting mouthy, the poop. He’s taken to complaining fairly often, and insisting on his love time. Here’s how the “train a human” session goes: he gets Mom first told, then provides her the opportunity to love and rub. Silly guy!
That’s my golden grizzly, wanting his “grammy love”.
He’s a good fella, and awfully tolerant of the heat-induced boredom. Not much outside time, even in the mornings, not when it’s 80F at 7am. So Monday morning’s car ride really scratched his itch!
Posted by greatdaneservicedog on August 1, 2011
Kenai, 3 yrs
Kenai gave us a rough weekend last weekend, complicated by my coming down with strep throat. While I gargled salt water and wheezed, I decided to hit the easy button and just keep the boy’s seperated again with barriers.
He refused to eat from a bowl at all, but would sometimes eat a little chicken if I hand fed him. He’s starting to resist taking his medicine, too, which doesn’t bode well for the future.
Make matters worse, we got a beating of biblical proportions at the auction: 100k under expected. There won’t be much left once the auctioneers take their cut. Puts the kitchen redo on shaky ground, and means building a raised bed garden is gone.
Profoundly discouraging, but it was the gamble we took: that people would honest enough to at least bid a fair market value. They’d never get a house and acreage that size for what they were bidding, a realty agent would laugh them outta the office.
Guess people weren’t looking for deals, they wanted steals. Steal it they did…
Kenai has dropped ten pounds this week, (ohh), and nothing seems to interest him as food. Everything else interests him entirely too much; that weirdness hasn’t changed. He’s having such a hard time.
HRH has, however, greatly enjoyed all the outside time in the latter part of this week. I’ve been hammering away at putting in a garden. One of our lovely new neighbors was willing to come help me, too! Kenai was cool as a king with Matt and his son Spencer.
Spencer wanted I think to play, but K was feeling too majestic for such activity. He watched and wandered and sniffed…eventually he started following Spencer around, getting a bit of petting without breaking the dignity-act. Good as gold, my big guy.
Unfortunately, put him around BB and good as gold has the distinct feel of a mirage…uhg. I’ve kept them seperate most of the time, because Beebs just isn’t right. He is more lethargic than I’ve ever seen him. Now I’m getting worried.
He’s never had a positive tick titer, and I’m seriously considering talking to Dr Susan about starting him on doxy too just in case. I don’t know what else it could be–there’s no skin problems, no ear infections, no weight loss. I just don’t know.
The bare knuckle slug-fest with the FMS/CFS to get the veggie garden in continues. I won for two days, it’s winning for a couple days. But I have everything except the beans and cucumbers seeded in. Things ain’t pretty yet in the dirt patch, but I’m workin on it!
I will have to reduce the boys’ outside time this week: we’re shooting up into record heat territory. That means they are out early morning and late evening only when the temps are below 85 F. General rule of my thumb is if I can’t take it, I don’t expect them to.
There hasn’t been much else happening but the garden and the I-won’t-eats. I’m coasting on the pup’s training. But next week the construction guys are finally gonna put in a decent bathroom for us. We’ll all lose our minds by next weekend!
Enjoy your mother’s day, everybody.
Posted by greatdaneservicedog on May 8, 2011
Stretched out now that he has the bed to himself…Kenai 3 yrs
Remember that tick bite and the normal CBC? Remember I didn’t quite buy the normal results? Yeah. While we waited for the results of the tick titer, Brown’s behavior got even more absurdly intense and intractable, not to mention jumpier and wilder…
He wouldn’t eat despite steroids, he would stop harrassing BB, he wouldn’t stop whining, he wouldn’t stop charging around barking at every noise, his legs hurt, his tummy was touchier. Just like every other time he’s spiked a titer.
The weirdness that caused me to go get blood drawn in the first place only got worse. The vet was surprised but I wasn’t: Kenai’s tick titers are off the charts again. Reinfected, with Ehrlichia again.
This will be the 7th round of antibiotics, the 5th recurrance or re-infection in his 3 yr life. (Thanks to a messed up immune system…)Advantix religously applied or not, body checks for crawlies everytime he’s out or not, he was bitten by one, ONE, tick.
What are the odds that that ONE would be infectious? Pernicious little beasts.
The next 2 weeks + are going to be hell for us all. The weirdness will continue, probably worse, added to by worsened anorexia, nausea, die-in-the-rears…
he doesn’t handle doxy well at all and it’s the only class of drugs that are effective on tick diseases. I’m scared again, plainly said.
He has totally refused his food this past week–won’t touch any of the Bravo raw or cooked, not even the oven roasted chicken I make for them. After two days of empty tum, I broke down and got him a small bag of grain free Taste of the Wild kibble.
He ate it like nobody’s business and wanted more. Boy likes his crunchy foods. Butt explosions are now inevitable, unless he pulls a contrary about that all of a sudden. For some reason, kibble and even dried meat, will give Kenai the runnies. No clue why.
He is taking cerenia for nausea, so I hope that keeps his appetite up. The doxacycline will worsen his appetite over time, no doubt, as it’s side effect is anorexia. Perhaps the cerenia and the kibble will keep him eating.
If he doesn’t keep eating as in the past, he drops terrifying amounts of weight. Like 10 pounds over a weekend. That’s what scares me most–his body scavanges its own muscle to keep going and that can become dangerous pretty fast.
As for behavior, I’m gonna have to be on my game to keep Kenai’s el-bizzaro boy under control. His intensity is hard to explain. Like he’s on a 220 outlet rather than a regular plug in.
It reminds me of the manic state of bipolar disorders. I’ve called it “going native” in the past. It’s as if he cannot hear you or understand what you say–his brain’s on fire, obsessive and fixated, hyper-reactive to stimuli. 24/7 all over the place.
This sounds unbelievable, but training is a waste of time: first he doesn’t respond at all, and he doesn’t learn anything. It was so frustrating, finding this out the hard way. But it does make sense if you think about it.
Any dog over-stimulated struggles with learning–you see it at classes and sports events. So once I realized Kenai is wildly overstimulated all day and night when fighting Ehrlichia, it clicked for me. Clicking for him is pointless, but I finally “got it”.
Question is, whadda ya do then? What can ya do if he never does get back under threshold?
He does respond to you when you get seriously dog-whisperer on him. Emotion he picks up on, sensitive to it to begin with. Skip the superficial (learned behavior), and go straight to the operating system (instinctive behavior).
That’s why I have to be extra calm to quiet him any and extra calm assertive to stop his harrassing BB. To work with a weirded out dog like mine, it takes fluency in dog-talk. In other words: body language, emotion, sensitivity, and intention.
Kenai does best when I use less of a correcting energy and more of a just bearing down insistance: “not what I want, love, I expect something else” without words. That’s also hard to explain! Maybe I can get a video up?
And I’m gonna have to shut up. Talking to him when he’s fixated is useless anyway. But human that I am, my first reactions are usually verbal. Then I can get irritated if my verbal instructions are ignored for a long time. Species clash…
So I guess the next few weeks will be an exhaustive exploration of how Cesar Milan Dog Whisperer works on a nutso dog brain? Definitely a concentrated lesson on how to be more patient and persistant than the nutso dog.
It feels kinda new agey, staying in touch with and using your energy and emotions to “talk” to a dog. Hard for me to sustain, too. You’d be surprised how much energy it can take, durn Chronic Fatigue. And with my anxiety issues, I have to first deal with myself and find that “zen” sorta state before trying to deal with Kenai.
Dogs have this way of finding their human’s weaknesses and making us straighten them out–or is it just me? They’re like mood rings, with fur. What I feel manifests in the boy’s actions, whether I was aware of what I felt or not.
The upside is: what’s hard for me learn usually is what’s best for me in the long run.
I suppose it is a good thing in the long run to delve deeper and take on my own anxiety difficulties. Left to myself I’d be likely to merely manage it just enough to get by. Brown’s gonna make me take control of it.
Posted by greatdaneservicedog on April 29, 2011
Guard puppy, watching a man with a push mower. Kenai 3 yrs.
Well, after reflection (aka, after “oh no, no, no, please, no…”), I should have not been taken by surprise that BB tried to bloat up on us. The spring weather and a new backyard meant he was getting more exercise, moving meant more stress, loose in the house with K meant more excitement…
Guess that means a little bit of a PSA is in order: now that you and your dogs are going to be out more, and finding “funner” things to do than winter’s dreary weather allowed, it’s time to start keeping bloat in mind.
Danes are prone to it, in fact it’s the leading cause of death in Danes. Barring just old age of course. It’s a danger all year round but especially in summer. Over yonder is a page about bloat and goes into more detail that I will in this post.
Here’s what happens: gas begins to build up in the stomach and intestines, next the pressure causes the stomach to twist (vets call GDV), and eventually the stomach and bowels can die from lack of blood supply.
The symptoms can be very subtle at first, but if you catch it early your dog is much more likely to survive. Marked restlessness, panting, and just general disinterest in the usual activities are the first wave of signs. Next will come an enlarged abdomen, pale gums, vomiting, and refusing to eat or drink.
Many vets will preventitively “tack” a dog’s stomach surgically if they are of a breed or have medical conditions to be at higher risk for bloat. Often the tacking is done during neutering or another surgery. This will prevent the stomach from twisting itself, which is when most of the life threatening damage is done.
BB was thankfully tacked, so he didn’t actually wind up in the vet having surgery. The surgery and aftercare can be very expensive, in the $1000′s of dollars for a dog the size of a Dane. And worst of all, there is no certainty of survival. You could go broke AND loose your buddy.
Since I have had past experience with bloat, and knew the underlying cause is gas, the doses of gas-x and vomiting meds were my first line of defense at home. But if my bent bottoms boy had not shown me signs of improvement within 30-45 min…
Well, experienced or not Beebs would have found himself hefted into the car and having an encounter with Dr Susan. He got a little gassy again after supper, and had one more dose of gas-x, and that was the end of his attempt to make me die of fright.
The faster you recognize and get treatment, the better the outcome is likely to be for your dog. There are some preventions or precautions you can take, and I’ve just incorporated them into our routines.
no exercise or exciting situations for 2 hours before and after meals. Play, going places, or anything that can rev up your pup might outta be avoided
not leaving your dog out in temps above 80-85F, and that includes the temp inside the car if they are out with you. Heat stress can precipitate bloat very quickly. Danes are not stay outside dogs for more reasons than they go bonkers alone.
Also restrict the water or don’t provide any until your dog has been inside and cooled off for at least an hour or two. They may be thirsty, but withhold it awhile. A panting dog will swallow air as well as water when drinking.
the ‘higher strung’ dogs seem to have a higher risk, so working to reduce your dog’s overall anxiety and stress levels is more than just being a good owner, it may well prevent a life threatening problem
Thankfully BB is fully recovered, resiliant as he is. The vet gave him a check over yesterday at a standing appt and found him in good shape. But he gave us a nasty scare.
I’ve been thinking…I know, uh-oh…but I have been thinking about ways to motivate Kenai to “work”. He’s lost interest in the clicker, and doesn’t want treats or toys, so how does a girl reinforce the click?
Really I just need more compliance with an occasional sit, down, or stay and he’s slower than frozen syrup about it.
I make him wait to get on the bed with me, that works. I want a polite sit stay at the door when someone comes and he’s cool with that as long as BB isn’t around. (Then it’s a zoo). You know, a little more listening in general.
But HRH has reached a point with many ‘requests’ like answering to his name (not again…) that if what he wants is combined with what he doesn’t want, he just walks away from the whole affair.
UHG! Jeez dog, enough contrary already. Even Lisa the trainer gets the disinterest when she wants his attention now. To get a bit more co-operation, I need to find a reward he actually wants. And won’t tire of in 10 seconds.
Nosework? Scent training, modified for my purposes? He wouldn’t care a fig about the birch oil officially used to begin scent training. But he would care about say, animal scents? Hunters use them to lure prey; perhaps I could lure a sit outta Donkey Dog with it?
If answering his name leads to a good game of sniff, I wonder if I would get more intrest in the name-calling (yeah of that kind too *grin*). If? I mean, with Kenai, any kind of training is a crap shoot, but still he’s the world’s original nose (and getting in trouble for it).
Lisa the trainer thinks it’s definitely worth a try. Me too. What shall it be; rabbit, deer, elk, possum, absolutely no skunk…
As for Big Brown being slightly off, the vet visit was a little relieving. The CBC and all showed no rise in immune activity, no drop in platelets or red blood cells, and nothing to indicate a problem. The tick titer has to be sent off, so we’ll see about that.
Still, the platelets have been our best diagnostic with tick disease flares in Kenai. That leaves pain to explain the pookiness and reluctance to eat. Perhaps the increased exercise? I’d have thought to see that the first week or so in the new house.
Perhaps not having a couch? He does wander is boy self off to my bed shortly after his supper, rather than hang out on the living room floor. Still, he won’t use the crib mattress when I put it down for him, and during the night he will go from my bed to the floor and back.
Maybe it’s just simple as the same reason for me: the weather. Fronts have been hitting us almost every day or two the past couple weeks, and it is rampaging all over my sorry tush. The FMS/CFS can leave you in ruins when it’s in the mood.
Chronic Fatigue syndrome has more than just the CFS moniker by the way.
There’s post viral fatigue syndrome, PVFS (sounds like a building material, don’t it?),
chronic fatigue immune dysfunction syndrome, CFIDS,
and a really scary sounding one; myloencephalitis, ME.
Personally I think we should settle on myloencephalitis, since many if not most people sorta tune you out or dismiss the severity of problems when you say fatigue.
Many people with whatever you call it have been initially misdiagnosed, with things like multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s, cardiac conditions, and even dementia–that’s how severe the symptoms can get.
Despite that, most doctors get a sorta deafened ear, about half thinking you’re a hypochondriac. There are still some who won’t accept CFS is real, regardless of how much proof you give them.
Oh the fun of an “invisible” disability…
Anyway, my Lovely Rump Boy may just plain and simple be getting hammered by the up and down of the barometric pressure. I’d love to believe that, but considering his history, I’ll believe it when the tick titer comes back negative.
And my allergies have gone crazy too–new house, new area ie new allergens. Maybe he’s a bit worn down by an allergy response? I wonder about giving the guys an allergy pill. hum. Try it on myself first, as usual.
I’m the guinea people ’round here, as opposed to having guinea pups. And no, I don’t have fur between my toes, he, he, he. (I checked…)
Kenai will have a little car ride this morning–a run for lawnmower gas–if we aren’t having downpours anyway. Princess that he is, he won’t get in and out of the car in the rain. Drizzle, yes, wet not if he can help it. Danes…
I’ve only had one Dane that actually liked the water. He would race ya to the tub for bath time, make silly boy noises while lathered, and had a squeaky ball to squish while being rinsed. Brazos couldn’t wait to be soaked, by showerhead or hose mattered not.
Mostly though, Danes generally hate getting wet. BB has the funniest droopy dog face on him during bathtime; those big ears slide down his head like they’re melting, and if he could shrink enough to hide in your pocket he would. Ya can’t help but laugh at his pitiful.
And Kenai gives ya moose face from pre-wetting to final rinse. He doesn’t abandon his dignity, but makes no attempt to hide his disdain for soap. It’s like a Rocky and Bullwinkle cartoon.
They don’t know it, but bathtime will be soon–waiting for a nice warm day for them to air dry in. Ow the sorrows of being a boy! Life is a drip when you’re wet…
Posted by greatdaneservicedog on April 21, 2011