Friday, December 31, 2010

Playtime...and some just for cuteness

Fun times playing with puppy...

Resting up with the kitty

Just for cuteness...

The obligatory bow on the puppy's head photo
 Puppy has had enough of this nonsense!

Thursday, December 30, 2010


Our  holiday ended up a little different than planned.  Due to uncertain weather conditions we ended up staying home for Christmas instead of traveling to see my family in St. Louis.  It was kind of nice to just spend time at home together, see a movie and relax.  On Sunday Jerry's mom came to visit. 

Ribbon is doing well-catching on to the crate training idea and sleeping through the night (well until 6AM anyway). 

Today was super warm so the dogs got some time to play outside.  No agility though.  I'm letting them have a break since it's two months between our last trial and our next one.  They deserve it and I'm sure it's good to get a rest from all that jumping, weaving and climbing for a bit.

Here are a few pictures of the beggars I took last week. 

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Pet Poisons Part 2

Anticoagulant Rodenticides (aka Warfarin, etc.)

Almost everyone realizes that ingestion of mouse or rat poison is also toxic to dogs (and less commonly cats, because cats are more resistant and less likely to ingest unusual compounds unlike dogs!).  So, what makes it toxic?  Warfarin, Bromadiolone, brodifacoum, diphacinone, difenthiolone, chlorphacinone are the most common anticoagulant rodenticides used.  Warfarin is the oldest and is now rarely used due to resistance-so don't assume that what you purchased was warfarin when you tell your vet your pet ate rat poison.  All of these substances interfere with Vitamin K, and several clotting factors are dependent on Vitamin K for proper function.  So, take away the Vit K and the whole clotting cascade is disrupted causing bleeding.  Once this happens the pet can essentially bleed from anywhere into any space such as the abdomen or lungs. Sometimes they can even bleed into the central nervous system (brain and spinal cord) causing seizures or other severe pathology.  Clinical signs can be lethargy, pale gums, difficulty breathing, weakness and many more. 

So what do you do?  First of all, don't panic.  If you come home and find your pet has eaten the rat bait it's not the end of the world.  It takes 36-72 hours for the body to use of the Vitamin K it has stored so your pet will not start bleeding and suffering effects the toxin right away.  Of course if you think the ingestion has been in the last 4 hours go the vet so they can induce vomiting and try to get what you can out of the system.  Whether or not you get there in time to induce vomiting your pet will be placed on oral Vitamin K capsules for 2-4 weeks.  Here's the important part-bring the package or write down the active ingredient.  Some of the longer acting products need to be treated for 3-4 weeks whereas Warfarin only needs to be treated for 7-14 days.  Your vet may also check clotting times during and after treatment to make sure you have treated long enough.

If your pet ingested the toxin and you didn't find out until clinical signs are showing your vet will likely run some blood tests including clotting times.  Your pet may need to be hospitalized and given a transfusion depending on their condition and blood tests.  The good news is that as long they get past the crisis or are adequately treated before becoming critical there are no long term effects from this toxin.

Also important to note is that not all rodenticides are anticoagulants.  Other ingredients such as cholecalciferol, bromethalin, and zinc phosphide are also being used.  These are much more dangerous than the anticoagulants and treatment options are much more limited.  If your pet eats these it is an emergency!  Do not use these products if you have pets-the risk is not worth it.  And naturally use caution and keep any and all rodenticides out of reach of pets!  Don't forget you have used them and then let the dog in the garage or in the shed, etc.  If you do use them check them frequently to make sure large amounts are not suddenly missing and always keep the package so you know what you used. 

Another note-it is a very rare phenomenon (some say it's not even possible) for an animal to become poisoned by eating mice or rats that have killed by anticoagulants so don't panic if your cat is eating a potentially poisoned mouse. 

Monday, December 20, 2010

The not for Christmas Puppies

This is our new foster puppy Ribbon. 

Ribbon's mom is a border collie who was running loose in the woods for several months.  Some nice people were feeding her and trying to catch her and finally resorted to a live trap.  Once caught it was obvious that "Millie" had recently had puppies.  So she was put on a harness and taken back to the woods where she ultimately led the rescuers to 6 fuzzy black and white puppies.  With no place for the new family to go MOKAN border collie rescue stepped up and found foster homes for mom and all the pups in just two days! 

For being born and raised in the woods all the puppies and Millie are social, sweet and friendly and seem pretty healthy.  Although we don't know for sure what dad was these are good sized puppies for having such a petite mom and they are also very fluffy and one has a double hind dew-claw so Great Pyrenees has been speculated.  Either way they are all super adorable!

We are waiting until after the holiday to post them on the website as we don't want to fend off the million requests for Christmas puppies (hence the post title).

But what puts you in the holiday spirit more than fuzzy puppies! 

Christmas NADAC Trial

The girls and I headed to Lawrence, KS this weekend with our friend an her dogs for our final agility trial of the year. Despite fighting a cold the whole time we had a great time. Both dogs ran great, doing all their runs with nice focus and enthusiasm. Legend did a 12 run weekend and never lost any of her speed! On Saturday she ended up with Qs in elite regular, open weavers and elite jumpers-which finished her jumpers title. Sunday she had two Qs in elite regular and two in elite tunnelers which finished her tunnelers title. She ended up with 40 points toward her NATCH but she still needs one Q in open chances before she can start working on the elite chances part of the NATCH. And there was tons of weave pole and discrimination practice this weekend and most of them she did very well. She also would have had another jumpers Q if I had not messed her up.

Lyric ran very well getting Qs in 4 of her 5 runs. She got two Qs in both novice regular and novice jumpers to finish both those titles. She was very fast and did not visit or get distracted at all and did a pretty good job on her weave poles.

I'm so excited for next year but glad to have a little break!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010


We babysat for Kennedy last night which was not only fun for us but also fun for her and the dogs as she is now old enough to enjoy playing with them.  She spent a good portion of the night taking every single toy out of the basket and throwing or kicking it to the dogs.  The dogs, for their part, were pretty patient while having everything under the sun sort of chucked at them by a small person yelling "hey puppy!"  If we can get her to throw the same toy over and over it will make Legend very happy!  

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Pet Poisonings: Part 1

In light of recent events I decided to start a series of posts on common pet poisonings.  Not only is it handy information for pet owners it's also a good review for me!

Not surprisingly we will start with Antifreeze or Ethylene Glycol...

Antifreeze is one of the more deadly intoxications in veterinary medicine.  This is in part because of the necessity of instituting treatment right away but also because the toxic dose is so small.  As little as 4.4 mL/kg can be toxic to a dog and only 1.4 mL/kg it toxic to a cat.  To put that into perspective that is 60 ml (2 ounces) for a 30 lb dog or just 6 ml for an average 10 lb cat!  As you can see cats and small dogs are at greatest risk because of the smaller volumes needed for toxicity.  That much can easily be obtained from underneath a leaky vehicle or from an accidental spill. 

So why would a dog or cat drink antifreeze anyway?  Unfortunately antifreeze tastes sweet making it a tasty winter treat for free roaming dogs and cats.  Also note that there is a safer antifreeze product available for use made from propylene glycol.  This product is 3 times less toxic than the classic ethylene glycol and consequences of ingestions and less severe.  It should not be used carelessly though-continue to keep away from pets and use caution!

So what makes antifreeze toxic?  Ethylene glycol itself is not actually toxic-it is the products of metabolism that cause the damage.  The enzyme alcohol dehydrogenase begins the metabolism of the ethylene glycol that ultimately leads to the production oxalic acid which binds to calcium, forming crystals which are deposited in the kidneys. 

Alcohols, including ethylene glycol are rapidly absorbed from the stomach and metabolism starts quickly so if you see your pet licking antifreeze or you suspect they may have-go immediately to the vet!  Other signs of intoxication include vomiting, anorexia, lethargy (I know, not very helpful), and wobbliness or acting drunk (more helpful).  In later stages coma, seizures, oral ulcers and decreased urine production can be seen.  Prognosis in the later stages is poor. 

Treatment is aimed at slowing down or stopping the metabolism of the ethylene glycol.  Fomepizole is a veterinary product that completely inhibits the action of alcohol dehydrogenase thus allowing the ethylene glycol to pass through the system without producing any toxic metabolites.  This is the preferred treatment in dogs.  Fomepizole is not inexpensive and some clinics may not keep it in stock.  For cats there are some studies showing that high doses of Fomepizole started within 3 hours of ingestions is a successful treatment option.  There is however, risk of anaphylactic reaction with this product.  The alternative treatment option for cats, and dogs for whom Fomepizole is not an option is intravenous ethanol (i.e Everclear).  Ethanol competes with the ethylene glycol for the alcohol dehydrogenase.  So if we can keep the alcohol dehydrogenase busy metabolizing the ethanol into non-toxic metabolites the ethylene glycol can leave the system safely.  Obviously there are side effects to this treatment-depression, hypothermia, acid-base imbalances, etc.  The rest of the treatment is supportive-fluid therapy, monitoring of certain blood values, maintaining body heat, monitoring urine production, and pain management for the hangover once you discontinue the ethanol!

Remember the key points of this post are limit exposure and treat early!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Then and Now




Hope you enjoyed these updated on previous foster puppies!   I know I did! 

Barney went back outside today-he decided on his own he was ready.  He had a great time while the horse was getting shoes checking out all the stuff he missed in the last week and hanging out with Lefty!

Monday, December 6, 2010


While looking up treatment protocols on the Veterinary Information Network, I found this reference

"The problem with cats is that if you don't treat them quick, most of them die.

Per Connally and Thrall, at 3 hrs post lethal dose EG administration, 100% recovery with fomepizole, 25% recovery with ethanol. At 4 hrs post EG, 100% mortality with either fomepizole and ethanol"

So far I have proof to the contrary recovering in my bathroom-it was more than 12 hours between noticing he was ill and coming up with a diagnosis.  Barney continues to do well, is regaining strength and appetite.  Hopefully he won't have too much permanent damage.  We are so thankful for all the prayers and well-wishes. 

Barney: 1   Antifreeze: 0

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Tulsa Dog Training Club

Just back from a pretty good weekend in Tulsa.  The big news is from Lyric-she finished both her AXJ and her OA this weekend!  What a super-pom! She's doing better at weaving at trials and not running past obstacles but is still getting distracted occasionally.  But overall she's coming along nicely.

Legend for whatever reason refused the a-frame and the teeter yesterday and then NQ'd what was otherwise a nice jumpers run due to handler error.  Stupid handler!  Today she had a nice Q in standard almost a double but missed that darn weave pole entrance.  I'm glad she only missed one entrance this weekend but I sure wish it had been yesterday!

And not that I'm proud or anything but here is Lyric with all her ribbons from this fall...

Friday, December 3, 2010

Videos and good news

Here are the videos from last weekend.  Legend's is a clean run, Lyrics's are non-qualifying but still cute!

In the good news department we did more bloodwork on Barney yesterday and the kidney values were back to normal!  Se we discontinued the ethanol and then later the fluids.  Now we just wait to see if he can maintain kidney funtion without fluids.  He's still pretty wobbly and I'm sure very hungover but he did start purring some and ate a little this morning.  Thanks for all the well-wishes, now if we can keep our fingers crossed a little longer!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010


Barney got into antifreeze.  We don't know where.  He doesn't usually go far but he must have went far enough to get himself into trouble.  I noticed he was sick monday night but looked him over and it didn't seem like an emergency (little did I know) so I just let him hang out in the barn like usual overnight.  Tuesday morning he was worse and I took him to work with me.  He was dehydrated, lethargic and wobbly, but without fever or obvious injury.  Bloodwork pointed toward kidney damage so we ran the ethylene glycol test-it turned positive almost right away.

Prognosis is poor in cats who are not treated within 3 hours but we decided to try anyway.  So far he's beating the odds but it's still a long shot.  Tomorrow we will run more bloodwork and reassess his condition.  Cross your fingers.  He's a fighter!

The sad thing is, this doesn't have to happen.  I know there are risks to having an outdoor cat but this is a preventable accident.  They make a pet safe product, people don't need to leave it sitting out, or let a car continue to leak.  It's not safe and it's not responsible-how would they feel if their cat was poisoned?  I can understand rat poison or snail bait-at least that is serving a purpose, but there is no reason for someone to leave antifreeze out where animals can reach it, even if they are not your own. 

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Thanksgiving weekend trial

After a long drive to St. Louis in the rain and freezing cold we spend Thanksgiving day with my mom's family-ALL of them!  It was nice to see everyone as I don't get to very often.  Then it was time for 3 days of agility and some time with my dad's family-much smaller!

Friday started out great for Lyric-she did all her weave poles and Q'd in both classes-both first places!  That gave her two legs each in Open standard and Excellent A JWW.  Legend had a good day but with a bar down in standard and missed the first weave pole in jumpers-guess we couldn't fix it completely in just 2 weeks!

Saturday Lyric went around one jump in jumpers and didn't finish the weave poles.  She did the weave poles in standard but had 2 refusals on other obstacles so no Q's.  It was Legend's day to so something weird-she ran partway up the A-frame, turned around and came back down.  No clue why.  After a few more struggles on that course I ended up getting disoriented and just heading for the exit.  But she had a nice jumpers Q to give us something to show for the day! 

Today was Legend's day as she had two lovely runs (I even did some accidental layering in standard) and got a Double Q!  Lyric has some nice things going on but didn't finish her weaves either run and spend a bit of time begging for cookies from the ring crew!

Off to Tulsa next weekend! 

Oh, and I have some video I will try and post later this week.  Too tired now. 

Monday, November 22, 2010

Dog torture

If you can believe it these are better of the group photos I tried to take the other day.  Don't they look sort of miserable?  Goofy dogs.  I didn't even bother to clean them up with photoshop.  I'll try for a better group shot on another day.  I just posted them because I have nothing else to post about today. 

 This is a pretty decent action shot of Zodiac though-my little herding boy!  Keeping the girls in line!
Speaking of the girls they have both been working weave poles this week and doing pretty well.  Legend is making a greater effort to get the entrance even is she has to work at it, no more just slipping in where it's convenient.  We shall see how it goes this weekend. 

Poor Zodiac is not getting much tracking time-what else is now.  It's either too cold or I'm too short on time to be out laying tracks.  I know, I'm a wimp.  But he doesn't seem to mind too much.

In other news we have a little dilemma.  We were leaving all the dogs uncrated in the bedroom during the day but we got tired of Zodiac rooting around on the bed, getting hair all over.  Plus sometimes he pawed so hard he was making holes in the sheets!  Se we got a couple of dog beds and put them in the spare room, where the bunny lives.  There is also a futon in there, window to look out, rabbit to watch, plenty of creature comforts.  I guess this is not acceptable to Zodiac because he knocks down the baby gate every day.  I tried just leaving them loose in the house all day and shutting our bedroom door but came home to find the couch covered in hair.  I think we will have get one of those baby gates that bolt to the door.  I know I could just crate him but I hate having a big ugly wire crate in the house ( he won't stay in the soft sided one anymore).  Plus he's almost 10-it's nice if he can just be out and enjoy himself...within reason!

Friday, November 19, 2010

Merry Christmas Grandma!

Hope you enjoy this year too!

(For new readers I print my blog into a book every year for my Grandma to read)

Thursday, November 18, 2010

The big picture

Back to the trial...

Legend continued to run well but didn't get any Qs on Sunday.  In standard she stopped to sniff a number cone ???  Like those haven't been there all weekend.  In jumpers she (big surprise) missed the first weave pole on a very challenging course that she otherwise handled very well.  Lyric continues to improve but has not quite got it all together yet-but is having a lot of fun!

So if I look at the short term situation it would be easy to be disappointed with all the near misses I'm having with Legend.  But if I look at the big picture, I really get a different perspective, and that's what I need to concentrate on.  This is a different dog than I had a year ago, or two years ago, or even six months ago.  She's faster, more confident, more consistent, more responsive, running smoother lines and making tighter turns.  If all we have left to fix is weave poles then we should be in great shape!  If we get the poles fixed and she continues to run this well then 2011 could be a really great year for her!  I would actually like to see her  get off the start line a little faster too but maybe that will come with time just like the rest of the improvements have.  Anyway, we have two more AKC trials this year and one more NADAC then we are done until sometime in February.  I think I'll be ready for a break, but it's always hard to stop when things are getting good.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Trial Update

We are off trialing again this weekend and here how it's gone so far...

Yesterday Legend missed the first weave pole (again) in standard and took an off course.  But her JWW run was picture perfect-she really couldn't have done it any better or make it look any easier!  It was a tough course but she didn't make it feel that way-I was super happy with it.  Lyric failed to weave again and had a few other difficulties on the standard course, but had some good parts to her runs.

Today Legend had a really nice standard run to set her up for a QQ.  But she missed the first weave pole (yes, again) in an otherwise clean jumper run.  So bummed, but on the plus side, she is running sooo well and so consistent.  I guess we will just drill weave pole entrances for the next few weeks and try to fix this.  Lyric did all the weaves in jumpers but crashed a jump later on in the course.  She also did all the weaves in standard and went on to get her first open standard Q!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Fall Photos

I tried to get them to all pose together but they acted like they were being tortured so we did it one at a time.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010


Here is a video of Lyric weaving this morning.  Can you believe this dog would hardly weave at the trial?  Little brat!

Sunday, November 7, 2010


I know, I know, no posts again this week but I've been busy.  I promise.

We just got back from a weekend at the Show-me Canines trial in Columbia.  We actually started off by doing some shopping Friday and then headed on in to Columbia Friday afternoon.  We had an ok weekend as far as Qs, but a great weekend as far as good food and good company!  Saturday Legend had a bar down and a wrong tunnel entrance in JWW but Q'd in standard.  Lyric would not weave but otherwise did great in JWW.  She still has some struggles in standard but we are working through them.  But she always seems to have fun. 

Today Legend missed BOTH her weave entrances on otherwise clean run.  Darn it!!!   So we will be working weaves for both girls this week.  Lyric however, did manage to weave (although not nearly as well as she does at home) in JWW for her very first AXJ leg! 

Our travel companions Linda and Chesney also did well as did our roommates Deanna and Chief.  Other exciting trial news-friend Barb and her pom Max earned their MACH2!  Lyric was taking notes!

Plus Lilly got adopted!  A very nice young couple from Kansas had applied for her and was approved so they drove down yesterday to meet her.  Of course they fell in love and took her home.  I think she will be very happy with them. 

Jerry and I started the P90X workout DVDs this week too, which has been cutting into my blogging time but hopefully will have been worth it in 90 days!

Sunday, October 31, 2010

It doesn't get any better

That really should have been a post for yesterday but I was too tired to write it up! So I'll start with yesterday's runs...

My girls were awesome! Legend got a Double Q and picked up more points than she ever has in one day. Her runs were slightly on the brink of out of control but she was listening well enough to run clean. Lyric was just a little star as well and picked up her open jumpers and novice standard titles! She needed two tries at the chute but blasted through like a champ on the second try! I'm pretty sure I could not stop smiling all the way home.

Today was very nice as well, although with a lower Q rate. Legend started it off with a bang getting another really nice standard Q on a fun course. Then Lyric went into the ring for her first excellent run! Most of it was nice but she didn't finish the weave poles and she had one lapse of attention where she went over to the ring gates to admire all her fans! Legend had a beautiful jumpers run with just one bobble-I must have dome something to push her out because she went around a jump and that's rare for her, but the rest was awesome. Then Lyric went into open standard and had a perfect run going (right through the chute-first try!) until the weave poles. Just couldn't weave today, but everything else was great.

Overall I'm super proud of both of them, but especially Legend. She ended up 4/6 with a QQ and 48 points. That's really good for her. But finally, after months of fretting, agonizing and stressing over this dog I think she has really turned a corner. She's running so happy and getting faster all the time and not acting stressed hardly at all. I'm having so much fun running her again and I think she is too!

Friday, October 29, 2010

Another weekend rolls around

We've had pretty good weather this week for working the dogs outside.  Although it's also the kind of annoying weather where you sweat under your jacket but your ears are cold.  Anyway, overall everyone seems to be doing well.  I think we are making some progress in tracking, I'm doing some new things with Legend in obedience and Lyric is adorable in everything she does as usual.

Today was day one of a three day trial-locally.  Well, relatively local.  It takes about an hour and a half to get there but I can sleep in my own bed.  Today was excellent only so although I brought both girls with me only Legend competed.  She was having a nice run in standard but entered the weaves wrong.  Dang, stupid weaves.  Jumpers was clean-and very smooth.  She was really listening today and making nice tight turns and smooth lines.  No looking at off-course obstacles and tuning me out!

Lilly got spayed yesterday and is thinking crate rest time should already be over.  Even when I take her out on a leash she's trying to jump and run and spin. 

The picture is just for fun.  Not related to this post-have a great weekend!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010


These are from the trial earlier this month.  They were scanned so the quality is not that great but still cute!

I got off work early today so all the dogs got to work.  It was a little windy but I decided to do some tracking anyway-he didn't seem to bothered by the wind and seemed to do ok even after a break over the last several weeks.  Legend worked on her open obedience and then some agility and Lyric rocked on some agility practice.  Hope she runs like that this weekend!

Sunday, October 24, 2010

BCSA 2010

Well, we didn't come home with a ton of ribbons but we did have a really good time!

Wednesday Legend had a few off courses in JWW but a very nice standard run-with a knocked bar.  But on the plus side she did pass the CGC!  I made a last minute decision to enter her so I was going to be prepared if she failed but she did great. 

Thursday day we were back for more agility.  Legend almost Q'd in JWW-entered the weaves wrong and I don't remember what happened in standard but I know it was not an "almost." 

Friday was agility and Rally so I was really on the move! Legend had a nice standard run, then I changed my handling plan at the last minute and caused her to miss a jump.  Stupid handler.  She did finally Q in our last run of the week in JWW.  So even though she was only 1/6, she was just a hair away from being 4/6 which would have been great.  And all her runs were with good speed and enthusiasm.  Zodiac was competing in Rally and earned his final RAE leg!  His scores were decent but not stellar-but we haven't practiced and he's not that interested anymore so we really just wanted to finish our title at the specialty and we did!

Saturday and Sunday were obedience for Legend.  She didn't Q either day but did have some strong points.  Today her heeling was quite good-minus the lack of sits.  Both days she had to be told twice to retrieve on the flat and both days she didn't do the broad jump.  I'm not sure why she can't make the connection on that unless it's just stress.  Today she had to be called to come twice and never did drop.  Both days had beautiful retrieve over the high jump and rock solid stays.  I guess it's all I can expect given the amount we've trained, the summer kind of got away from us.  I'm still undecided about taking her on to utility if we ever get our CDX.  I think I'll go ahead and start working the exercises more and see how her confidence in the ring improves.  I'm just not sure how dedicated I am to getting her over it.  It seemed to take forever in agility and I worked on that constantly and was in the ring at least once a month or more.

The weather was phenomenal-agility actually moved outside because of all the complaints about the flooring at the event center.  I didn't mind running outside and enjoying the weather but the agility field sure is a hike from the event center if you were entered in multiple events!  Even driving some of the time it was still a hassle.  Plus moving all the crates various times, I'm so sick of loading and unloading vehicles!

The rescue dinner was fun, if a bit unorganized.  And the raffle did not have the quality or quantity of items it has had in the past.  That said I won a bunch of stuff so still fun I guess.

Our MOKAN booth did well and raised a good amount of money to help our rescue dogs and I got visit with a lot of friends.

We had a little dog birthday party for Lexie, Legend, and Lyric as they all have fall birthdays.  All in all, a good trip!  Oh, and we have a good application on Lilly (who was very good on her first big trip) so she may be adopted soon!  It was no one we met this weekend so probably won't be an agility home, but a good home nonetheless.