Wednesday, March 27, 2013


Everybody, meet our new foster dog, Finn!  I told you it wouldn't be long.  And no, I'm not being cute, he really did come with that name.

Finn comes to us under special circumstances.  Finn is already a MOKAN alumni.  His original owner gave him up when he was about a year old because he did not show interest in working livestock.  He was then adopted by a great owner who took excellent care of him for more than 8 years.  They even added a second MOKAN dog to their family.

But then his owner became terminally ill.  When she entered the hospital for what is expected to be the last time the dogs were placed in boarding where they have spend the last 4 weeks while arrangements for their care was made.  The other dog was easily placed since she is younger, lower energy and a trained therapy dog.  But nobody wanted sweet, playful, well-mannered, but almost 10 year old Finn.

Finn seems like a great dog so far.  Good with other dogs and cats, rides well in the car and used to being in a home.  We will know more about Finn soon but we do know that he does not look or act his age and needs someone to over look his "senior" status and give him a loving home.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Happy dogs

We had a ton of fun at the NADAC trial this weekend.  Fortunately the roads cleared in time for us to head out Friday afternoon as planned.

First up-Legend.  I gotta say, my girl had a great weekend.  She seemed to happy and non-stressed all weekend long.  No A-frame refusals at all and there were a few courses that started hoop, hoop, a-frame even!  She ended up going 4/7 with two regular and one chances Q.  Yep, that's right, knocked out another chances leg finally.  Actually she would have had a second chances and a third regular had she not missed the down a-frame contact.  Seems now we are having issue with the other side of the a-frame!  But I'd rather have that issue so I was bummed but not terribly.  And both of her regular Qs were greater than 5 yards per second which is quite good for her.

Here is her chances Q.  She actually turns towards me after the hoop and I had to stop, redirect and and send her back out while avoiding the off courses.  Which, in a way, is actually more awesome than running it "clean."  Just not as pretty.
And here is one of her regular Qs.
Finally, this is her Chances NQ-but it's so pretty!
Lyric did not fare quite as well. She ended up 2/7 getting a couple of jumpers legs.  The good news about Lyric is that she was very fired up all weekend long and was flying around the courses.  The bad news is that she only weaved about 50% of the time.  In fact, in one run after four failed attempts I just carried her off the course with no cookies.  She was not impressed with this!  She also needs to work on her discriminations some, but this I knew.  She was pretty naughty though.  During one run she actually checked in with me on the approach to the discrimination, then took the tunnel anyway.  So bratty.  But cute.

And maybe best of all we did not get stranded in Oklahoma!  When we got up sunday morning we were surprised to see 5-8 inches of snow forecasted at home.  But this was way off as by the time we got to MO the roads were clear and there was actually only a dusting of snow at the house.  Good job weatherman?

In other news, Quinn's new family is on their way to come get him as I write this.  I'll miss that big guy but I don't think his spot will be vacant long.  Stay tuned.

Friday, March 22, 2013

March 22nd

I think this is the most snow we've had at one time in at least two years.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Luck of the Irish

That may have been a better title if we had had a better Q rate this weekend, but it still seemed appropriate given the St. Patrick's day theme of the trial.  Anyway, despite some of our less than stellar performances this weekend we did have some monumental successes.

First of all Lyric rocked in the fun run.  Did discriminations and weave poles like a pro.  Apparently, she is NOT a pro however, since she failed to perform these things correctly in the ring most of the weekend.  Back to the drawing board.  However, she did manage to pick up a jumpers and a regular so not a total loss.  I only entered her in things she needs for champs (minus chances since that's not happening this year) so that Q rate is not a dismal as it looks.  On the monumental side of things we did purchase some organic treats from a vendor and they did not give her diarrhea!  As an added bonus they were so delicious I ate some too-think Teddy Grahams (shaped like bears and everything).  Side note, we did some training this week with duck and potato food and she did well on that too-no butt baths all week!

Legend fared slightly better.  I also only had her entered in things needed for champs plus one round of touch and go just to see if she could finish her open title.  And yes, this was one of her weekend monumental successes.  We are finally in elite touch and go.  Only took five plus years to of trialing to acquire the 6 Qs necessary for this.  Sadly though, she struggled with some of the discriminations this weekend which is not usually like her-she's not 100% on them but she usually doesn't miss multiple per weekend.  She did manage to pick up one regular Q, and, get ready for this... the course started hoop, a-frame and she did it!  No refusal!  This was her other monumental feat of the weekend.  In fact she only had one a-frame refusal all weekend-on a course that started hoop, a-frame.  I'm not sure what changed between saturday and sunday but we'll take it.  She also picked up a tunnelers Q.  Chances was a bust.  Lots of hoops and no jumps either day.  But sunday was better, she only missed the discrimination.  I set up some harder distance stuff in the yard this week but work and weather have only allowed a little practice so far and we hopefully (pending weather conditions) leave for another trial friday.  Not sure if one day of training really helps but surely the the following trial we will be ready.

Friday, March 15, 2013

Thursday, March 14, 2013


This is my 1000th post.  I'm not posting anything monumental, just one of my favorite signs ever.  I wish I could hand these out at work, but not very good for client satisfaction.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

The Unusual: Part 6

Here ya go...

1.  A client was using the product "Bitter Apple" to teach her dog not to chew on things.  BUT, she was spraying at the dog instead of on the objects she didn't want chewed.  I suggested she no longer spray such a product in her dog's face and instead follow the directions.

2.  Client used the term "euthanate"

3.  A self-admitted grade "D" pet owner solved the problem of her cat and dog eating each other's food by alternately buying a bag of cat food and then a bag of dog food and feeding both from the same bag.

4.  Someone called the clinic asking about getting some Amoxicillin for her fish.  Red flag-you don't treat fish with amoxicillin.  After further discussion she admitted it wasn't for her fish it was for her, she wanted if for a bad tooth or something and could we just get her the meds.  First of all, no.  Second, at least use a believable story like a large dog, not fish.

5.  Called a client to discuss his dog's radiographs only to find out that the number in the file connected me to Afghanistan where the client was deployed.  He requested I call his wife in the states to discuss this matter.  No problem but don't leave this number as the only one in the file.  Also the person who dropped the dog off and left this number might have mentioned it would connect us to Afghanistan.

6.  While working at a spay/neuter clinic in a more questionable area of town a suspicious looking guy doing a lot of twitching walks in and asks to use the restroom.  When informed that we had no restroom available for public use he responded with "ok, I'll just wait" and took a seat.  Perplexed, the office manager advised that we really couldn't help him unless he needed spay/neuter info.  He then launched into this bizarre story about a box on the the sidewalk and how there were wires coming out of it and something about it affecting the birds.  Office manager suggested he contact the authorities if he had concerns about the "box" and when he finally left, she locked the door.

7.  After euthanizing a large breed dog the owner asked if we could extract the canine tooth so he could use it as a necklace.  I advised that such an extraction was a major procedure amounting to oral surgery and there would be a significant cost for this.  But offered that he could take the dog home and do as he pleased with it.  He elected to just proceed with cremation.  I guess he though teeth might just fall out after death.

8.  A client announced that she obtained her Chinese Crested dog because they remind her of mini-horses.  You be the judge.
9.  Client asked if they could use the anti-fungal shampoo I prescribed their pet on themselves.  No ma'am I can't actually advise that.  Please see a physician.

10.  Client asked if we would mind if they brought their concealed weapon into the clinic or if we would prefer he leave it in the car.  Do you feel you need a weapon while in the clinic?

11.  Client thought their injured dog was mauled by a deer.  I'm not sure that's even something that happens but I'm pretty sure that if it did, it would not lead to small puncture wounds.

12.  Some of the more unusual pet names-Bite and Scratch (one name), Widow, Batman Tiggly, Murderball, and Murderface.  Yes those are all real.

13.  This is a hairless cat.  I just think it's weird.

14.  And finally, from the "you might be a redneck if" category...

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Fun Run Photos

 I think she looks a little psycho in this one
As I said before, Lyric ran too but her photos must have been on the disk the photographer's cat chewed up.

Meanwhile, we are enjoying the extra daylight to get in some training before two weekends of NADAC.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

The junior handler

The new local agility club had another fun run this weekend.  This gave Lyric a chance to work on the teeter and weaves, and Legend a chance to do the A-frame (all of which they did perfectly). But more importantly it gave us a chance to see how Kennedy and Legend felt about running together.  Given that we had never tried this before and that Kennedy is not quite four I think it went pretty well.  She did a great job of walking the course and picking out the next obstacle but adding in a fast moving dog made it quite a challenge for her.   By the time she regrouped after completing one obstacle Legend was doing her own thing or running back to me for direction.  But I think with practice and time they will do ok.  Mostly we need to teach Kennedy to keep running.  But for now, feast your eyes on one of the cutest blog posts ever...

Walking the course

Friday, March 8, 2013

Parasites Part 9: Cheyletiella

Cheyletiella are mites that affect dogs, cats, and rabbits.  There are separate species but host specificity is controversial.  Cheyletiella are relatively uncommon.  They are large mites that are light in color and cause large amounts of scaling which earns them the nickname of "walking dandruff."

In addition to scaling, Cheyletiella also cause itching and hair loss.  Transmission is usually from direct contact but also from infected environments.  Adults can live off a host for 10-14 days.  Diagnosis can be made by microscopic examination of hairs, skin scrapings, and scotch tape preps (placing tape over the scale and debris on the fur and then placing the tape on a slide to look at under the microscope).  They are most common in crowded and unsanitary conditions.

Cheyletiella are susceptible to many common topical insecticides and antiparasitic shampoos.  Protocols are similar to those used on lice.  Treatment of all in-contact animals and the environment (bedding, etc) is also recommended.

Zoonotic Potential
Cheyletiella will cause a transient rash on humans but it typically resolved on it's own after the pets have been treated.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

What do you say?

Scenario one:  Practicing in rural areas we really get some, uh, characters as clients.  Such was the case with the new clients and their three dogs.  While I was making some notes in the chart they mentioned they were thinking of getting their male dog neutered.  I agreed this was a good idea.  Then Mr. New Client asked it we "put them to sleep" for that.  I assured him we did and the doggie wouldn't feel a thing.  Then, as if it was totally normal, he proceeded to explain to me the procedure his father-in-law used for castrating fully conscious  newborn puppies involving a bucket and a towel. When I picked my jaw up off the floor, the least offensive thing I could come up with was "well, I don't really think that's a recommended procedure."

Scenario two:  A large dog of a breed I am already wary of is barking before I even enter the room.  Despite  these red flags I tried to not be judgmental and attempted to make friends with the dog.  He took some treats and wagged his tail.  But as I started to examine him he lunged at my face sending flying against the exam room door and directly out to fetch a muzzle.  The owners repeatedly apologized proclaiming he had never bit anyone before.  What do you say?  It's obviously not ok that the dog tried to eat my face but berating clients for poorly managing their ill-tempered and unpredictable dog is not great for customer service.  So he got a special sticker in his file and I am left with an even greater fear of said breed of dog.

Scenario three:  Remember the dog that jumped out of the truck and got hit by a car on his way to get neutered?  Well, the same day the owners had brought in their other large breed adult dog for a neuter as well and surgery was uneventful.  10 days later they returned with both dogs.  Seems the neuter incision looked swollen and and one of the wounds on the hit-by-car dog was not healing well.  Turns out they had been letting the dogs wrestle.  Really?  Where in the discharge instructions for surgery and hit-by-car recovery did it say that would be on ok thing?  But obviously these people have impaired judgement to begin with.

Scenario four:  A dog was attacked and treated at another clinic.  Life goes on and owner takes dog to groomer.  Why you would take a short haired dog recovering from bite wounds to a groomer is beyond me, but, whatever.  Anyway groomer does not think the wounds look "right" which concerns the owner enough to bring the dog to us for a second opinion.  I really didn't think it looked too bad but have no idea what it looked like before.  I switched to what I thought was a more appropriate antibiotic and a shampoo and advised that cosmetically he might look worse before he looked better because he was going to lose more hair.  Upon checkout the owner wanted to know when, exactly, he would be "better."  Well, "better" is a very relative and subjective term and considering she thought he was getting "better" until she spoke with the groomer I had no good way to answer as I wasn't sure what she might consider "better."


Sunday, March 3, 2013


I finally took some updated pictures of Kahuna. He is now 13 months old and just over 12 lbs.  He is still growing. Really, we thought he was bigger, but that's what the scale says.

Friday, March 1, 2013


The DVR broke this morning.  I was in the middle of Bones (because you can't have too many rotting corpses early in the morning) when I walked out of the room to take a phone call about a more real-world problem (an update on my hit by car dog from yesterday).  When I returned, regular TV was playing.  Odd, but maybe the cat stepped on the remote.  However, when I tried to reload it, I found it was gone along with all the other shows that record on the bedroom DVR.  When I went in the bedroom to check I found the box to be dead as a door-nail   This amounted to minor personal crisis since I had planned to spend the morning in my PJs on the couch (it's cold outside).

Personal crisis aside, it made me think about how frustrated we get when we can't do something that up until a few years ago wasn't even possible.  As in, the days before technology changed our lives.  For example, remember commercials?  Because I don't.  We pretty much never watch anything "live" anymore.  It's always what we want, when we want it.  We will actually wait 20 minutes until after a show has started to watch it on the DVR just to so we can fast forward through the commercials.  Even if it means we have to find something else meaningless to do for 20 minutes.  Downside, I never know what movies are coming out.

Remember before everyone had a cell phone and carried it with them everywhere all the time?  It used to be when you had to make a phone call you had to go home, dial the number, and hope the other person was also home.  If they weren't you had to choose a random time to try again, or maybe, if you are lucky, leave a message and hope they call back while you are still home.  These days we pretty much expect to reach anyone at any time and get annoyed when they don't either answer or call back in 5 minutes or less.  I have a friend with a job that does not allow employees to carry cell phones on them.  I'm still getting used to waiting until lunch or after work if I need to contact her.  I know I could just call the business if it was truly important but in a world of unlimited texts and more cell phone minutes than I could use in a lifetime most of the "reasons" I need to call her are actually not critical.

Perhaps best of all remember trying to find information or answers before the internet?  Imagine trying to plan a vacation or a trip without online references.  Going anywhere would require the use of actual maps and calling for directions.  Which, you better do before you leave the house because you don't have a cell phone. And when you finally arrive at the hotel you didn't book online your biggest concern might be whether or not local calls are free and how much you would be charged if heaven forbid you needed to make a long distance phone call.  Now all we worry about is how many sockets there are in the room for when everyone needs to charge their cell phone, iPad, laptop, and video camera all at the same time.

These days you can now find the answer to almost anything in mere minutes with the use of Google and Wikepedia.  It might be a useless fact for mere curiosity or the answer to a question that would have previously required an extensive literary search at a public library (to which I don't even have a card any longer).

This is probably about the time you are wondering if this blog post ends with wishing we could go back to the simpler times and slower pace of days gone by.  It doesn't.  I love my iphone and my laptop and I'm not sorry I spend a good portion of my life attached to them or with my hand on a mouse.  I'm not sorry I haven't used an encyclopedia in years.  I'm not sorry I packed up the last of our "regular" phones while cleaning today since we disconnected our land line this month.  I'm not sorry we live in an era of information, technology and constant communication.   I was a little sorry that the DVR broke, but when Jerry came home, he fixed it.  We will now return to regularly scheduled programming.  Without commercials.