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General Upholstery Questions and Comments => General Discussion => Topic started by: Virgs Sew n Sew on August 18, 2014, 10:14:29 AM

Title: Our Dog Carly
Post by: Virgs Sew n Sew on August 18, 2014, 10:14:29 AM
Hubby and I adopted 2 rescue dogs (brother and sister) 11-1/2 years ago.  Carly has developed a "delicate" stomach over the last few years -- growly tummy if she eats too much rich food and sometimes even when she's just on her older dog kibble.  Fourth of July she had an accident in the house but we attributed it to the stress of the fireworks, cleaned things up with no scolding and went about normal business.  We then noticed that she would strain a little after bowel movements like she couldn't get everything out.  She has started having "accidents" about once or twice a week.  They are never firm but not horribly loose.  I took a stool specimen in first of last week.  Vet ruled out works, etc and recommended giving her Activia once or twice a day to see if that would get her back to normal.  Well, that seemed to get rid of the straining but really turned her stool about as loose as it could get.  I discontinued the Activia and put her on acidaphalous (misspelled I know but the active ingredient in yogurt).  We had another dog years ago that we gave one of those pills a day to keep his stool normal and it looked like a charm.  Yesterday things seemed great.  I took them out at 6 this morning and she pooped - maybe a little loose.  Was eating breakfast around 8 and she came charging out of the living room.  Took her out and she strained and strained to get one semi-loose turd out.  Came in the house and discovered that she had an accident in the living room.

So, with heavy heart I called the vet to make an appointment for her.  They are going to do a physical exam to make sure that she doesn't have any issues that can be cleared up with an antibiotic.  But we cannot justify several hundred dollars of lab work on a 12 year old dog.  Most importantly, our first rule is that we don't keep our pets alive just so we don't have to greave their loss.  I'm concerned that she's in pain and we just don't know it.  At any rate, if the vet's recommendation is a bunch of lab work "to see what's going on", hubby's directive is to have her put to sleep.

I've known for the last several years that we were to the point that this could happen sooner or later.  Of course, I was hoping that this day would not come for quite some time.  I'm also concerned about her litter mate and how he will deal with her loss.  I'm on the fence about replacing as I was attacked by an 85 to 90 pound dog several years ago and have a lot of issues about strange dogs and a huge, huge fear of being attacked again.  Needless to say, I'm not excited about going to look at dogs, especially where the mother is still around.

Hoping the vet will have a magic cure for her.

Virginia
Title: Re: Our Dog Carly
Post by: BlueFlamingo on August 18, 2014, 11:50:46 AM
All I can say is...I know and wish you well!!!  It will get better with time!!!
Title: Re: Our Dog Carly
Post by: kodydog on August 18, 2014, 12:17:09 PM
Best wishes at the vet. Putting a dog down is the hardest decision I've ever made. My thoughts are with you. I'm sure another furry friend will find his way into your heart.
Title: Re: Our Dog Carly
Post by: bobbin on August 18, 2014, 12:26:09 PM
Waiting for the "other shoe to drop" is not a fun position.  I'm a realist.  "Calling in the cavalry" for an ageing, infirm dog/cat isn't an option for me/us.  And throwing money at the inevitable has never been part of how we live, either!  I applaud you for that.  It takes guts to look reality in the face. 

We have a "new to us" kitty.  1 1/2 yrs. old and when she arrived here and naively we figured she'd hide from the 3 resident cats (adopted as kittens and now 10+ yrs. old).  NOPE.  She went on the offensive and attacked everyone (our mistake in allowing too much contact too soon).  So, any adoption can be "tough sleddin'".  It takes adjustment and time to get everyone in sych..  But everyone is now on brusque but cordial terms; some occasional hissing and growling, but no fisticuffs. 

We also have a 100# dog that we adopted 10 yrs. ago (neutered male).  Big, bold, "in your face", but also very smart and very loving.  And we took our elderly Springer in to meet him... she was really easy-going and there was no issue with her (we were more concerned about the cats but it was a non-issue). 

Take your time with an adoption.  We took a week to think about said dog.  We knew that serious "boot camp" would be required and we were prepared for the obedience work.  The greater point is that we followed through with the obedience work and ended up with a fabulous dog!  And a dog that would've likely been euthanized if we hadn't "sprung him from the joint" and put in the time. 

Take your time.  It's a big decision and it's not one you ought to make because you're worried about your remaining dog being "lonely".  You'll make the right decision; remember that it's not a "pressure question" and you have time on your side. 

I'm sorry about the upcoming app't..  Sucks, any way you look at it. 
Title: Re: Our Dog Carly
Post by: SteveA on August 18, 2014, 01:23:46 PM
   9 years ago our now 10 year old Chihuahua was having stomach issues.  We stopped the dog food and started cooking for him - chicken, rice, beef, pasta and sometimes mix it with vegetable baby food for starch - very bland.  The last 9 years perfect stool, perfect stomach.  We also give him half a pet tab every day.  Hope your pets are OK -
SA
Title: Re: Our Dog Carly
Post by: bobbin on August 18, 2014, 02:59:15 PM
Our dog eats what virtually every vet. tells you not to feed your dog... leftovers!  And our vet. has always remarked/s at how great our dog/s have looked in advanced age (go figure).  I'm with Steve on this one.  "Dog food" is comprised of the nastiest of the nasties.  Everything left over at the abattoir is pumped into "pet food". 

We use some commercial dog "food", but for the most part? we recycle leftovers through the dog.  He gets a marrow bone section (2" section of some leg bone) every day.  His teeth are plaque-free, his breath is good (for a dog).  He dumps 2X daily and he's not fat, coat is beautiful, he's fully mobile (but slower now). 

Our vet. asked what we fed him.  When he heard "leftovers" he remarked that we must eat pretty well.  We do.  And building health is a big part of the way we live.  Our dog is but one beneficiary. 

Rock on, Steve!
Title: Re: Our Dog Carly
Post by: Virgs Sew n Sew on August 18, 2014, 03:40:10 PM
Just back from the vet.  Carly is running a temp so she is on antibiotics for 6 days.  If not better after 4 days, vet wants to run a blood panel which would cost $90.00.  Hubby wants to do that much for her.  She's now back down in my studio where she likes to hang.

That would/will be the worst part for me as she spends as much time in my studio as I do.  She is an extremely loyal creature.  As I mentioned earlier, she & James were rescued along with 4 of their litter mates.  How many were dumped on the road side we don't know but 6 were rescued and put into "foster homes" until they could find permanent homes.  These were the last 2 left needing homes and neither one of us was willing to break them up so we adopted them both.

We used to feed them more table food than we do now.  Have tapered off a little as they have gotten older and have developed their delicate stomach issues.  When we first moved back to Nebraska (from Kansas), I worked at a dead stock removal company and I learned much about grading out dead stock and what is used in pet food.  Some brands are better than others.  We use Science Diet (was recommended by our Kansas Vet when our first Saint Bernard was having allergy issues.

I'm hoping that the antibiotics will due the trick.  James stole my heart when we first went to visit them but Carly won her position with her undying loyalty to me.

Thanks for all of your kindness.  So very much appreciated.

Virginia  :-*
Title: Re: Our Dog Carly
Post by: bobbin on August 18, 2014, 04:43:09 PM
We eat a lot of whole grains (brown rice, bolghur, quinoa, beans etc.).  And we don't each much "processed" food; we buy ingredients.  And we actually cook, what a concept!  We buy meat from local farmers and only if they are members of MOFGA.  It's "expensive" but quality costs, and we don't eat meat at every meal!

We begin eating vegetables from our garden in early May and we can still have fresh salad greens  in late October.  So, anything that moves through us moves through our dog.  He's healthy, vigorous, and fit as a fiddle for 12 yrs. old and 100#.  He eats what we eat and he looks great!

You live in the heartland of slaughter.  You know well why we limit that garbage where our animals are concerned (since we don't eat it ourselves!).  If we won't eat it why would we feed it to our pets?
Title: Re: Our Dog Carly
Post by: Virgs Sew n Sew on August 18, 2014, 05:06:52 PM
Yup, we won't feed other than Science Diet or Iams.  The absolute worst is Old Roy (Walmart).  Mostly filler and the worst of the worst.  As long as the stock is picked up early, it's not bad.  In the summer, most of what is picked up is not used for pet food, boiled and used for tallow or whatever.

Interestingly greyhounds that run are actually fed the top of the line dead stock (if such a thing exists).  Generally the cattle that die due to severe blizzards and such.  We made enough in the winter to last the runners all through the summer.   That was an interesting, if smelly, place to work. 

We limit our red meat intake, mostly because of the carbon imprint it takes to produce it.  We're not as green as we would like to be but are working on it.  We eat lots of salads and cheese mostly.  Occasionally chicken and pork.  About one cheeseburger a month and a steak about every 3 months.  Last steak we had did not even taste good and I never thought I would say that.

Virginia
Title: Re: Our Dog Carly
Post by: Darren Henry on August 18, 2014, 05:31:31 PM
I'm sorry to hear what your up against. Know that I'm hoping the best for and Carly. I applaud Hubbies decission to at least do the blood panel. I feel exactly like you and He do; but I got to spend a few more good years with Buddy by not just writing him off with out proof.

Quote
That would/will be the worst part for me as she spends as much time in my studio as I do.  She is an extremely loyal creature


That was Buddy, as well. When the old lady took the voluntary reduction in rank to part time, he just came where ever I went. No biggy when I still had my shop---but when I had to close it up and take the job with Bathfitter he just became my swamper. Didn't care what town, what motel, how long he had to sit in the van---he was all in. "Course couldn't leave him in the motel for 12-14 hrs a day so he waited patiently, even if it was 30 below, for me to take a quick break and warm the van up while we shared a couple of cookies [I always kept a bag between the seats because I didn't stop for lunch---never helped himself either no matter how hard he was shivering] That's him on the deck with me in my pic.
Title: Re: Our Dog Carly
Post by: Mike on August 18, 2014, 08:52:07 PM
Sorry to hear back i. March my gigi had a. Loddy stool in the mor i g on the front porch.
Took her to the vet and he said she was ok. Then  a few day later it happe ed againg so with more different test show high number for her kidneys   They eanted to keep her overnight  to watch her that tirned i to all weekend and her test were worse so me and my. Rother had to make a decision to put her down not seing her. Nut when i saw her walk into the room to see us she was really visa ly sick   I had fo do this once before but this time was different as she looked her normal self when i left her.   So i had to go on what they said her condition was and further. Extensive money didnt make sence or was possible on a ten year old dog. 2 weeks later i ended up adopting 2 brother and sister pups. 13 weeks now twice there sizes.
Title: Re: Our Dog Carly
Post by: Virgs Sew n Sew on August 19, 2014, 01:41:28 PM
Carly has had just one dose of the antibiotic the vet prescribed.  Stool was much firmer though she still strained a bit this morning.  As hubby said though, it may take a while for her to quit straining just because she is in the habit of straining now.  If her stool continues to look as good Friday as it does today but she is still straining, then we will have to call the vet to see if she wants to run the blood panel.  Hubby did say that she was concerned about the straining.

At any rate, I'm cautiously optimistic that she is improving.  She's been hanging with me all day with the exception of the hour I spent working on the dreaded VW in our garage.  Even that project seems to be going good today.

I'm always amazed at how attached we get to our 4 legged creatures.  These two have been a testament to what love does.  As I posted earlier, they are rescue dogs and it was very apparent that they had been horribly abused before they and their litter mates were dumped.  We've had them for close to 12 years and they still freak out over the vacuum cleaner.  I always go outside with them while hubby vacs.  It was months before hubby could pet the male as he was petrified of men.  Bob started making popcorn in the afternoon and sharing it with Jimmy and that won him over -- after all how can you be afraid of someone who feeds you popcorn? ; )  Now, James (Jimmy) welcomes anyone who comes in the door and generally pushes Carly out of the way if they start petting them as he wants all the attention.

Virginia
Title: Re: Our Dog Carly
Post by: bobbin on August 19, 2014, 02:05:36 PM
That's great news, I imagine you feel better now, too!
Title: Re: Our Dog Carly
Post by: Virgs Sew n Sew on August 19, 2014, 02:29:45 PM
That's great news, I imagine you feel better now, too!

Absolutely -- it is a huge relief!  I've really gotten way more attached to her since opening Sew & Sew, when Carly decided to become a cave dweller.

Virginia
Title: Re: Our Dog Carly
Post by: Mike on August 19, 2014, 05:54:36 PM
Thats awsome   Virginia.
Title: Re: Our Dog Carly
Post by: Virgs Sew n Sew on August 20, 2014, 02:46:26 PM
Two days worth of antibiotics are in Carly (four days to go) but so far they seem to be doing the trick.  I haven't seen any straining from here today (our dogs go out under supervision due to a questionable motel catty-corner from us).  She's also not hell-bent on going outside every time you get up from your seat so that's another good sign.  As the old saying goes, the proof though will be in the pudding.

Hubby and I both so relieved that she seems to be getting back to her old self.

Thanks again everyone!

Virginia
Title: Re: Our Dog Carly
Post by: Darren Henry on August 20, 2014, 05:25:04 PM
That's wonderfull news Virginia! Made my day. Finger's crossed that what ever that was is gone for good.
Title: Re: Our Dog Carly
Post by: Mojo on August 21, 2014, 04:31:18 PM
Excellent news. I hate seeing animals in discomfort. :)

Chris
Title: Re: Our Dog Carly
Post by: Virgs Sew n Sew on August 26, 2014, 08:35:16 AM
Excellent news. I hate seeing animals in discomfort. :)

Chris

Thanks!  Just wanted to post quickly that Carly finished her antibiotics on Saturday.  So far, knock on wood, she's doing great.  No straining or loose bowels.  I'm still in "keeping my fingers crossed" mode but if she remains as she is now for another few days, I'll feel like we're out of the woods on this one.

So glad that I still have my "sewing buddy" hanging with me is Sew & Sew.

Virginia
Title: Re: Our Dog Carly
Post by: Darren Henry on August 26, 2014, 06:09:46 PM
As we say up here; RIGHT ON,EH!!! Buddy and I went through that a couple of years before his race was run, and I was in the same place as you and ?? (forgot hubbies name,sorry). I hoped that it would work out for you as well, but at that age I didn't want to give false hope or brag about our situation if yours  went sour.

Glad to hear all is well.
Title: Re: Our Dog Carly
Post by: kodydog on August 26, 2014, 09:20:22 PM
That's great to hear Virginia. I hope Carly gets back to her old self real soon.
Title: Re: Our Dog Carly
Post by: Virgs Sew n Sew on August 27, 2014, 09:02:56 AM
As we say up here; RIGHT ON,EH!!! Buddy and I went through that a couple of years before his race was run, and I was in the same place as you and ?? (forgot hubbies name,sorry). I hoped that it would work out for you as well, but at that age I didn't want to give false hope or brag about our situation if yours  went sour.

Glad to hear all is well.

We went through this about 2 years ago with her sibling, James (or Jimmy as I generally call him).  He got bronchitis, which I didn't know dogs even got and lost 10 pounds in nothing flat as he wouldn't eat because his throat was so inflamed.  I force fed him yogurt initially and then switched to the expensive dog food in what looks like hamburger wrapping.  You get it in the refrig section of the pet food department at HyVee.  Don't know how many grocery stores carry it.  Bob and I really thought Jimmy's number was up for sure on that one.  We could see every bone on his body.  Took about 6 months to get the weight back on him.  He's in good health now as well but has more "old man" tendencies since then.  Gets up more slowly, doesn't jump up on the bed anymore, sleeps more, etc.   We feel very fortunate that both dogs now have had a serious health issue and are still here with us.

We don't know their breeding for sure but both have shepherd markings.  Jimmy's head shape and mannerisms are definitely husky and Carly has the featherings and mannerisms of a retriever so we figure they have the blood of all three breeds.  Not a bad combination as far as temperament goes though Carly can be a little overprotective as far as barking when she sees someone on the other side of the street a block away.  Otherwise, she's a jewel and we're all allowed at least one flaw ; )

Virginia
Title: Re: Our Dog Carly
Post by: Virgs Sew n Sew on August 28, 2014, 08:57:25 AM
That's great to hear Virginia. I hope Carly gets back to her old self real soon.

Oops, I spoke to soon.  Carly had an accident during the night.  While her stool was still firm, there were multiple piles, which is how things were when this first started.  I called the Vet's office already as Bob was ready to take her in and get the blood test started.  Much to my surprise, our Vet wants to put her back on the antibiotics for another 6 days with the understanding that if things go south again, our next step will be to get the blood work going.  I have a dentist appointment at 10, so I'll swing by the Vet's after my cleaning.

Hopefully, we just didn't quite get rid of things and another round of antibiotics will finish things off.

Virginia
Title: Re: Our Dog Carly
Post by: Darren Henry on August 28, 2014, 05:31:14 PM
I've got my fingers crossed for you. I hope that's all it is.
Title: Re: Our Dog Carly
Post by: Virgs Sew n Sew on August 30, 2014, 11:47:33 AM
I've got my fingers crossed for you. I hope that's all it is.
Carly's bowels seem to be under control on the antibiotic but her "delicate tummy" issues also seem to be more frequent.  Don't know if that is because of the antibiotics or if there is a correlation to the other issues.  Regardless, I'm going to mention that to the Vet when she's off the antibiotics.  She had delicate tummy issues this morning and threw up.  Bob could not identify the substance in her vomit.  I was in the shower when this happened and he had cleaned things up before he told me.  I didn't want to rummage around the trash right after showering.  She hadn't eaten this morning and didn't take her first trip out for business reward nor had she gone to the kibble dish so I'm at a loss as to what she could possibly have eaten and thrown up.

Otherwise she seems fine, very alert, active, runs the steps most of the time like they are nothing, very loving.  We're just trying to keep a closer eye on her and will report to the Vet first thing Tuesday or sooner if we have an emergency with her.

Virginia
Title: Re: Our Dog Carly
Post by: Virgs Sew n Sew on September 02, 2014, 11:21:21 AM
Called the Vet first thing this morning and they squeezed Carly in this morning.  Bob just left to take her.  Her stool is relatively firm but she just strains every time she goes and if you compare the width of hers with her sibling, it seems pretty narrow like it's being squeezed by an obstruction of some kind.  Doc is going to do an exam, I'm sure feeling the bowel areas externally to see if she can feel anything.  Bob has our cell phone and will call to discuss our course of action if need me.  Due to Carly's age, we will not do surgery.  If we can bring her home for a while, so long as she's not in pain or a lot of discomfort then we will.

Crap, crap and crap.  Amazing how those little balls of fur steal your heart so quickly.

Virginia
Title: Re: Our Dog Carly
Post by: Virgs Sew n Sew on September 02, 2014, 03:13:56 PM
Bob and Carly (YAEH) got back.  Doc got the blood work going and gave Bob a prescription supplement (?) to add to wet food for 5 days.  Is supposed to help with her pooping/straining issues evidently.  Said that we might now hear on the blood work until as late as 6 PM on Wednesday so the waiting game continues.

I'm not sure who was happier that she was home:  Bob, myself, Carly or her littermate, Jimmy.  The two cats just kind of go along with the flow.

Virginia
Title: Re: Our Dog Carly
Post by: Darren Henry on September 02, 2014, 05:53:28 PM
Quote
-----so the waiting game continues.

Better a step to the left than a step back. Know that we're all thinking of you and Bob, and pulling for Carly.

Try to relax. Make a nice big supper----[jewish accent if some of it should fall on the floor--ooh---what can you do? [jewish accent .
Title: Re: Our Dog Carly
Post by: Virgs Sew n Sew on September 03, 2014, 10:41:20 AM
Thanks Darren

Here's a recent picture of her, complete with big goofy eyebrows:

(http://i1278.photobucket.com/albums/y511/huskerslover2001/Carly/048_zps481d966b.jpg) (http://s1278.photobucket.com/user/huskerslover2001/media/Carly/048_zps481d966b.jpg.html)
Title: Re: Our Dog Carly Blood Work Back
Post by: Virgs Sew n Sew on September 04, 2014, 09:22:29 AM
WHO HOO!

Carly's blood work was all perfect.  Vet said that it was hard to believe that the results were from an almost 12 year old dog.  She did say that we can't rule out an intestinal tumor but we are going to operate on the assumption that she's just had a bad intestinal virus and because of her age, it is taking a while to get it completely out of her system.  She has 3 more of the packets that are mixed in with wet food to go through and then we'll see what happens.  She did poop this morning with no straining and it seemed more normal in comparison with Jimmy's.  However, we thought that while she was on the first round of antibiotics too so I'm not going to jump for joy yet.

Very glad that Vet is happy with things, other than that we may have to consider intestinal tumor if things go south again but I'm not going to dwell on that.  She does want us to watch the amount of human food and keep her on Science Diet for older dogs and we'll go from there.

So, a good report all in all.

Virginia
Title: Re: Our Dog Carly
Post by: gene on September 04, 2014, 06:23:26 PM
Glad to hear Carly is out of the woods, or getting out of the woods. Dogs should only go into the woods to poop. Our dogs and cats really can grab our hearts.

My Labrador has cataracts and is blind. $3500 for surgery. I can't see that happening. (Neither can he.) I'm thinking of putting a pair of sunglasses on my dog and taking him into stores and restaurants with me and telling people I am a "seeing eye person" for my blind dog. I'll bet most people will think that's a great idea.  :)

Oh, I've had some medical pains this year and I keep spending money on tests and they keep finding everything is OK. My blood work came out perfect also. (I have something in common with Carly.) On the way to my most recent hospital visit for more tests last week, I told my wife that I sure hope they find something wrong because I feel like I'm spending all this money for nothing. She was not amused!

gene
Title: Re: Our Dog Carly
Post by: Darren Henry on September 04, 2014, 06:50:33 PM
Quote
My Labrador has cataracts and is blind. $3500 for surgery. I can't see that happening. (Neither can he.) I'm thinking of putting a pair of sunglasses on my dog and taking him into stores and restaurants with me and telling people I am a "seeing eye person" for my blind dog. I'll bet most people will think that's a great idea.

ROFL, Buddy was the same way and actual deaf at the end. Thank gawd for the arthritis! He was the former "fastest land animal in N.W Ontario" in his prime.  How do you fetch that back up if it decides to book ??? LOL.

Title: Re: Our Dog Carly
Post by: Virgs Sew n Sew on September 09, 2014, 09:07:57 AM
Many years ago, we had a Siberian Husky.  That boy jumped our neighbor's 5 foot chain link fence without touching it.  ARGHHH.  He spent many years on a chain because we didn't think a 6 foot fence would contain him.  When we got Guenther (St Bernard), I swear he would stick his head over the fence and gravity would take its toll and he'd slither over the fence like a snake.  I wasn't going to have 2 dogs chained up, so we ponied up for a 6 foot fence (we had 7 lots to fence so it was a few $$$$'s).  When the fence was done, we let Billy (Husky) out the door.  He tried and tried to jump it.  He'd make a mad dash and just when he'd need to jump he would brake and then pace the yard whining.  He did that half dozen or so times and then obviously figured out there are worse things in life than not being able to jump a fence and became perfectly content to run the yard with Guenther and our other 2 mixed breed dogs.  LOL

Back to Carly, she had her last packet of meds mixed in with wet food on Sunday.  Had one and only one poop yesterday and it looked pretty normal.  Keeping fingers and toes crossed that we have weathered this crisis as she really is a sweetheart.

Virginia