Monday, January 30, 2012

Sam's da Man!

My husband and I had the "pleasure" of puppy sitting my sisters latest foster dog this weekend - Sam the Rottweiler.

I'll admit, I was nervous. I have had no experience with breeds that require more "assertive" handlers. I'm not sure I am an assertive handler - but I sure am bossy. :)

Sam came over on Tuesday for a quick visit to see if there would be any problems with our dogs and cats. Indie and Travis were in their ex-pen while Sam looked around. He was less than interested in them. Excellent.

Sam came over Thursday night, and despite everything going well on Tuesday, we decided to keep him separated from our much smaller [and I'm sure tastier] animals. Our pets were confined to the basement by way of baby-gate (the cats were not pleased) and Sam had run of the main floor.

The weekend took some finessing to ensure there were no encounters, but it all went very well.

For just coming in to our home he listened very well - I was very, very impressed. He came when called, followed basic obedience commands and would "wait" for his food until released. He is quite the love bug and enjoys being scratched all over too!

Sam seems like a good boy and only appears to have the same "issues" any dog would in a new home. He loves to go for walks (he would however make someone an excellent jogging partner) loves to play fetch (he doesn't release toys yet so we alternated between two toys to get him to give the one he had up) and appears to have had some basic obedience training at some point (he needs some reminder training sessions though).

Oh, he also preferred drinking from the toilet (no fear, our toilets are pet safe for drinking) which he'll drain quickly and then slobber all over everyone and everything. Eewww!

I wouldn't recommend him for a home with small children (only because of his size and puppy like demeanor) or cats (I think he had some prey drive bubbling up) or a for a first time dog owner but he'll certainly make someone a good dog.

I did learn something from the weekend - I don't want a dog bigger than a Sheltie...ever. Big dogs just occupy too much space - usually the space that I want to be occupying.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Why is it always The Bum?

The majority of my dogs’ health issues seem to revolve around the bum area – it’s becoming discerning. It is also reaffirming my decision to be childless.

On Thursday morning Travis seemed overly interested in his “hind end”. I knew he had been well enthralled with this activity for a while because his hair was soaked and his “hind end” was very, very, clean. Ewww.

I hoped it was “nothing” because there were no digestive issues and he only licked when he was laying around – if we were playing, or out for a walk he never wanted to lick.

Friday was more of the same but now things were looking red. Ugh. I called the vet and since he wasn’t in distress the earliest I could get him in was Sunday morning.

Saturday was more licking. Ewww…

Sunday morning we headed to the vet. Clearly there was an “emergency” in the office because we didn’t see anyone for almost 30 minutes. We were told that the wait would still be at least another 30 minutes – we opted to stay because I knew we had to. I didn’t mind though – lots of nice people to chit-chat with and friendly dogs to meet. The Vet Techs were also very forth coming with the treats which made things good for the boys.

I am always curious with the dogs weigh and Travis weighed in at 12kg even – down 0.08kg from our last visit. The whole weight thing is weird to me…Travis looks like a big Sheltie, but a Scottie came in and looked like he was at least 1/3 smaller. In fact he weighed the same as Travis. What’s up with that?

Our turn finally came and long story short Travis’ anal glands were “very full”. They had to shave around his bum, which means his skin is now irritated and he has to wear the “cone-of-shame” for the next week or so. Not to mention to keep him from licking this nasty cream that has to be applied twice a day….no kids, no kids, no kids.

The recommendation is that we go every 3-4 months to have things checked out and to re-evaluate the situation as we go. Excellent.

Afterwards – as a reward – we took the dogs to the park. Travis was all full of himself (makes me thing of that first horseback ride in the early spring on a frisky 3 year-old) so clearly the bum had been an issue for him for a while. The symptoms crept on so slowly that ever we didn’t notice a change in this attitude.

Glad he is feeling better though – I love my boy.