Archive | July 2013

Arthritis in Dogs

We had an interesting problem day before yesterday.  Dixie, our Border Collie mix, had back leg paralysis.  It came on very suddenly.  She was sleeping in her room with her brother Bosco, and my husband went to let them outside and she couldn’t walk.  She managed to crawl outside to urinate, but then just laid in the dirt.

Yesterday morning I gave her Nux Vomica for pain.  I asked my husband to give her some in 3 more hours, then again in 3 hours, but he didn’t.  He doesn’t know a lot about homeopaths and I think it scared him a little, not knowing what he was giving her.  I checked my trusty book Dr. Pitcairn’s Complete Guide to Natural Health for Dogs & Cats.  Because it had came upon her so suddenly, and her legs were hot and red, I thought of Arthritis.  I didn’t see any cuts or gashes, and thought if she’d been bit by a scorpion, it wouldn’t be both legs.

I gave her Belladonna 30C.  This particular homeopath is useful “when the condition has come on suddenly, is very painful and associated with a fever”.  Dixie was warm, her legs were red hot on the edges and her nose was dry.  A dose of Belladonna, one or 2 pellets every 4 hours for a total of 3 treatments.  She wasn’t supposed to have food for ten minutes before or after, but the only way I could get the pills in her was to use canned cat food.

I checked her last night at Midnight and her legs were considerably cooler.  This morning I gave her the last treatment.  When my husband went to put them outside, she jumped up, barked at her brother and dashed out the door.

Never, EVER underestimate the power of homeopathic drugs!

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Saying Good-bye

In all the years I’ve loved and lost animals, it never, EVER gets any easier.  You can tell yourself it’s for the best, they’ve crossed the Rainbow Bridge, they aren’t in pain anymore, yada, yada, yada.  Doesn’t help me much.  But as my grief fades, I remember the good times, the antics, the hairballs and the poop needing to be cleaned off the floor.

Mosby went through some tough times – suffering at least 2 strokes that I was aware of, and of course, kidney failure, which occurs in so many elderly cats.  And he was 22 years old, almost 23.  I can console myself and say I was lucky to have had him for so many years, but…..it’s never long enough.

Moe wasn’t a cuddler, wasn’t even overly friendly, but…..he was charming.  Long haired, black as the night, with a little cropped tail, like his Momma.  It made him unique amongst the other cats.

I know in my heart I did what I could for him, to keep him happy and healthy for those 22 years.  I’m also grateful that he got to die at home, that I didn’t have to drag him into the car and to a strange place, only to have them euthanize him.  A polite way of saying “killing him”.

Moe – you will be missed so very much.  I know the other cats can sense the loss, the dwindling of numbers and they will grieve in their own way as I grieve in mine.  Someday….we’ll all meet again.  I love you.  So very much.

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Food Allergies in Cats

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PinMao lovin’ up on his brother Smudge

I’ve always tended to believe that dogs can and will eat anything.  Take my dog Bosco, for instance.  When he was little, he ate my husbands leather glove.  Even though my husband was yelling at him to stop, he just got a little gleam in his eye, chewed it up and swallowed it.  My Dad wanted to know if the dog was going to poop out mittens.  A leather glove, a $20 bill, various pieces of paper, twigs, bugs….he truly is a garbage pail.

Cats, on the other hand, tend to be very picky about what they eat.  Food they’ve eaten for months suddenly turns their stomachs and they walk away with their noses in the air.  Sometimes the only thing I can do is sprinkle a little dried liver treat on their food to get them to eat.  It’s either that or open a new can of food and start over again.  My Grandmother, God rest her soul, fed her cat tuna, steak, chicken….cooked every day and if he didn’t like one, another treat would be forthcoming.

Me?  I feed my cats Fancy Feast and….until yesterday, Blue Buffalo Dry Food.  Which brings me to my subject.  Food allergies.   Rolla, our “bedroom” cat has lived upstairs for years and years.  She doesn’t like other cats, so we indulge her by letting her be the queen of the bedroom.  She developed scabs all over her body – her ears, her face, her neck….it was ghastly enough that I finally took her to the Vet.  They did all the standard things and couldn’t find anything wrong.  I was advised to bathe her in special soap twice a week.  Has anyone ever bathed a cat even once?  I almost lost an arm!  I thought I was doing her a favor, feeding her Science Diet dry food.  She LOVED it!  After the unsuccessful trip to the Vet and losing blood in the sink from one bathing session, I decided to change her food.  I started her on Blue Buffalo.  Now, granted, it took almost a month for all the scabs to disappear, but they did.  She’s back to being her gorgeous self.

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Rolla, in all her glory!

Which brings me to another point.  A couple of my Cat House cats have scabs on their necks and back.  Not horrible like Rolla, but enough to make me think about food allergies.  They also eat Blue Buffalo.  I’ve decided to change their diet and purchased some “Wellness” food instead.  I’ll let you know in a month how it’s working!

As for the Fancy Feast, they all still love it – twice a day.  However, I’ve stopped feeding PinMao any fish because of his diarrhea.  I’m hoping it will at least slow it down enough so that he can develop his insides a little better.  I don’t think he’ll ever be a perfect pooper, but I’m going to do what I can to help!

Bosco, the glove eating dog!

Bosco, the glove eating dog!