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Hello to All,
It has been a rough few months for both Roxie and Gypsy. I’ll start with Roxie’s cancer. We had noticed in June that a lump on her back was growing big, hard, and fast. At first I thought it was a fatty tumor, like the one she has on her belly, but it did not behave like that one at all. When we took her to see our vet, Dr. Maria Williams, she took one look at Roxie, did a biopsy, and told us it had to come off. I, of course, was quietly freaking out. We scheduled Roxie for surgery the following week.
We were told that Roxie did really well during her surgery, but Dr. Maria said she was very aggressive with the surgery and took out more tissue than she had anticipated. Roxie had about 15 staples on her incision. We would have to wait for a definitive diagnosis, as the tissue sample had to be sent off. So, Roxie was sent home with an Elizabethan collar and post-surgery instructions.
Roxie is thunder-phobic. That night and early morning we had the worst thunder and lightening storm that I can remember. Poor little Roxie, who was supposed to be resting and recovering from major surgery, spent most of the night pacing, crying, and throwing up. So, none of us got much sleep that night.
All of us hated the Elizabethan collar. It was hard plastic, Roxie had a very difficult time moving around with it, and it hurt a lot if she bumped into one of us. We got the idea to use an inflatable travel pillow instead, and it worked like a charm.
Roxie, who is 15 years old, did not get the memo that she was an elderly dog recovering from major surgery. It only took a couple of days before she was jumping around, wanting to play, and demanding her breakfast/snacks/dinner right on time.
We received the diagnosis from Dr. Maria in about ten days. It was a spindle cell sarcoma. We discussed our options with Dr. Maria, such as chemo, radiation, Chinese herbs, and we all decided our best course of action was to wait and see. As Dr. Maria put it, we would consider every day with Roxie a blessing. Besides, Rick and I had discussed that although we would never let her suffer, we also would not put our 15-year-old dog through any type of chemo or radiation. I’ve seen too many humans go through hell with those types of treatments. We are more interested in Roxie’s quality of life rather than artificial longevity.
Fast forward to today: Roxie has had no recurrence of the cancer. We have her on a homemade diet, she drinks Kangen Water® , and we started her on turmeric after her surgery. So, I am hopeful she will be with us a good while longer.
I’ll continue on with Gypsy’s back issue in my next post.
Until then, take care and please give your dogs a hug for me,
Jan 23, 2015 | | Animal Communication, animal welfare, Dog Behavior, Holistic, Home Health Care for Dogs
We’ve had a cold winter, at least by San Antonio standards, and decided to purchase some doggie pajamas for Roxie and Gypsy to help them stay warm at night. We had a problem last winter with Gypsy in that she would boot Roxie out of her bed, and we figured it was because she was getting cold at night. As you can imagine it is difficult to keep a dog “under the covers” so even though they each had a nice warm blanket covering them starting out, by morning, they would be uncovered. The pajamas have worked out well, and though neither Roxie nor Gypsy liked wearing them at the beginning, it appears to us they are now enjoying their jammies.
Plus, although admittedly my opinion is biased, I think they look pretty darn cute in them!
Take care, and stay warm this winter!
Feb 06, 2014 | | Animal Communication, animal welfare, Dog Behavior, Home Health Care for Dogs
Hello to All from San Antonio,
As Roxie did in August, now it is Gypsy’s turn to celebrate her 14th birthday! As she was a stray, we don’t know Gypsy’s actual birthday, so we’ve guessed it to be this time of year.
Gypsy definitely has some graying about her muzzle, but all in all, gets around really well for a 14 year old. She loves to hunt in the back yard, and takes her job of home security quite seriously. I wrote about one the examples of her guard duties in the post: Our GPS – Gypsy’s Possum Surveillance.
Gypsy is camera shy, but we persevered and managed to get a decent shot of her in a party hat:
And here is Gypsy protesting the wearing of a tiara:
Roxie, on the other hand, is a little ham:
Please give your dogs a hug for me,
Nov 07, 2013 | | Animal Communication, animal welfare, Dog Behavior, Stray Dog
This week, the first national monument to military working dogs was dedicated at Lackland AFB, here in San Antonio. It is quite fitting the monument be constructed at Lackland, as it is home to the world’s largest training center for military, security canines, and their handlers. The Lackland facility has trained dogs for all of our military since 1958. This project was eight years in the making, and was financed by private donations.
The four breeds used most often by our U.S. troops are featured in the monument: malinois, doberman pinscher, German shepherd, and labrador retriever. Each of the dog statues is about five feet tall. Along with the dogs, there is a nine-foot-tall statue of a uniformed canine handler. My favorite part of the monument, however, is the water feature showing a handler using his helmet to offer water to his canine partner.
Our local ABC affiliate, KSAT, covered the dedication in this story with a video showing the water feature: National monument for military working dogs unveiled.
U.S. Air Force photo by Benjamin Faske
Nov 01, 2013 | | Animal Communication, animal welfare, Dog Behavior
Hello to All,
We have had an opossum problem this summer. We noticed it for the first time, when our motion-detector light in the back yard came on about four a.m. one morning. Rick was awakened by a tap, tap, tap on the doggie door and noticed the light was on. He got up and saw a possum with its little paws up on the doggie door either licking or wiping its face on the doggie door.
Of course, I thought Rick was crazy, until a couple of nights later, I heard the tap, tap, tap on the doggie door, saw the light was on, got up and observed the possum doing the same thing.
We asked our veterinarian, Dr. Maria Williams, who used to be a wildlife vet, about this behavior. She said the possum was most likely marking its territory.
Rick, being the thrifty type, did not want to purchase a trap for a one-time use. So, he consulted YouTube, and constructed a trap out of our old puppy carrier. He baited it with peanut butter, and sure enough, the next morning we had our possum. We named it George, in honor the late country singer George Jones (nickname “The Possum”) who had recently passed on.
We released George into nearby McAllister Park and thought that was that.
A while later, we noticed Gypsy obsessively sniffing the deck. First she would focus on one particular spot, then move to the next, etc. She would not leave it alone. We didn’t think too much of it, until we saw another possum running across the deck one evening. So, Rick set up the trap once again, and the possum was captured in the trap the next morning. We named this one G2.
We learned to take Gypsy’s cues for G3, G4, G5, and finally, G6.
Gypsy is no longer obsessing about the deck, and has taken up her normal hunting duties in the rest of the back yard. For her efforts, we have nicknamed her our GPS, for Gypsy’s Possum Surveillance.
Gypsy with G6 in the trap
G6 in the trap
G6 set free at McAllister Park
Until next time, the best to you and your dogs,
Sep 16, 2013 | | Animal Communication, animal welfare, Dog Behavior
I am passing along this wonderful illustration by Lili Chin of examples of fearful dog behavior. I’ve seen a lot of these from Roxie and Gypsy, and they most often use the avoiding eye contact and lip licks. One behavior I’ve observed, especially from Gypsy, that is NOT on this chart is “whale eye” where the eyes get large and you can see the whites all around the pupil.
If we see these behaviors from either Roxie or Gypsy, we do our best to remove them from whatever is causing their distress, as we don’t want them escalating to a more dangerous behavior.
To see other examples of Lili Chin’s work: Doggie Drawings by Lili Chin
Until next time,
Aug 29, 2013 | | Animal Communication, animal welfare, Dog Behavior
Thank you for indulging me in celebrating our Roxie’s 14th birthday!
Roxie is doing quite well for a senior girl, although she has slowed down, and is losing her hearing. She still likes to play and is still our fetchaholic who barks at us every day at five p.m. to throw the ball!
Here is our little princess in her birthday tiara:
And donning a party hat:
And Gypsy getting in on the action:
Here is my post from May about Roxie’s hearing loss: Deaf Pet Awareness.
My best to you and your dogs,
Aug 15, 2013 | | Animal Communication, animal welfare, Dog Behavior
Hello to Everyone on this extremely hot day in San Antonio.
Following is an article I wrote on which I would love to get your feedback:
Is your pet D.O.A? By Jean McKinney
Three root causes of all disease in humans can be traced back to the following conditions:
As our animals are subjected to the same living situations, environmental toxins, and questionable water, they, too, fall victim to the above conditions.
Unfortunately, just like us humans, our pets are suffering from degenerative diseases like cancer, diabetes, arthritis, etc. in record numbers. Veterinarians are seeing more cases of these heartbreaking situations each year.
Humans, in general, are clinically dehydrated. Even dedicated water drinkers are not getting complete utilization of the water they drink, and they are unknowingly drinking water that is oxidizing, acidic, or even toxic.
As opposed to 70-75% of water that comprises the human body, most of our pets are made up of about 60% water. They, too, need to drink plenty of water to replace their lost fluids during the day, especially those that are outside during the summer or are working animals. Our pets do not sweat, which makes it much more difficult for them to cool down as effectively as we do.
An immediate trip to the veterinarian is called for if you see any of the following signs of serious dehydration in your pet:
– eyes that may be sunken into the head
– less energy than usual
– dry gums in the mouth
– excessive elasticity of the skin
Much of our municipal water supplies are necessarily treated with chemicals such as chlorine to remove bacteria and other contaminants. The chlorine, unfortunately, makes the water smell bad and taste worse. Our pets have a much more refined sense of smell than we do, so they are reluctant to drink bad-smelling and bad-tasting water unless they are really thirsty.
Oxidation is a chemical process occurring in our cells simply as a result of being. Oxidation can be thought of as rusting, aging, or rotting, none of which is desirable if we are interested in living healthier, living longer, or just looking younger. Unfortunately, we are subjected to more toxins, pollutants, and stress than ever before, all of which accelerate oxidation.
Just about everyone has heard that antioxidants are good for us, as they reverse the oxidative process. Antioxidants make up the bulk of supplements we consume, and many of us are making a point of upping our antioxidants by eating more raw fruits and vegetables, or drinking such things as green tea.
Our pets are subjected to the same oxidative stresses as we are, so they can benefit from antioxidants. But, how many of us think about providing supplements for our animals? We are lucky to remember to take our own!
Acidosis is a condition whereby the pH of our cells is excessively acidic. This is virtually a universal occurrence with today’s lifestyles of too much stress, poor diet, lack of exercise, taking prescription medications, consumption of drinks like sodas and energy drinks, environmental toxins, and on and on.
In the 1920’s Nobel Peace prize winner Dr. Otto Warburg discovered that disease thrives in an acidic environment, and does NOT thrive in an alkaline environment. Our acidic lifestyles are one reason why we are seeing epidemic rises in degenerative diseases in our culture.
Our pets experience the same health issues as we humans do, so it is not just important for us to strive for a more alkaline cellular pH, but for our pets as well. Of course, this is easier said than done as we can’t wave a magic wand and eliminate all the stresses and toxins from our lives or our pets’ lives. Nor is it a simple matter or even advisable to change our diets, or our pets’ diets, to consume strictly alkaline-based foods.
Alkaline, Antioxidant, Restructured Water
Drinking the proper water can be a simple solution to overcoming the negative effects of dehydration, oxidation, and acidosis. The key word is proper, as drinking tap water, the vast majority of bottled waters, or reverse osmosis water, is not going to successfully address the issues of dehydration, oxidation, or acidosis.
Ideally, the water would:
– be micro-clustered (restructured) to address dehydration
– have a strong antioxidant value to address oxidation
– have an alkaline pH to address acidosis
Micro-clustering means the water molecules are smaller than those in regular water, so the water is much more easily absorbed, and you benefit from more efficient utilization of the water you consume.
There are naturally occurring sources of water that have an alkaline pH, are high in antioxidants, and are micro-clustered, such as Tlacote, Mexico, or Lourdes, France. Unfortunately, most of us have neither the time nor the resources to travel to such places to get this water.
What we do have is Kangen Water®, produced by a technology from the Enagic Corporation in Japan. This technology has been available in Japan for about four decades and is used and endorsed by multiple Japanese hospitals, clinics, and medical professionals.
From personal experience I have seen the tremendous positive effects this water has given not only the humans in our family, but our pets as well.
For information about Kangen Water® and the technology behind it, please visit our website www.OrangeBadPurpleGood.com, or call Rick or myself at 210.545.2059.
About me: I am neither a pet expert nor a medical expert. What I am is a devoted pet parent to two 13-year-old mixed breed female dogs, Roxie and Gypsy, and an enthusiastic drinker of Kangen Water®.
I wish only the best for you and your pets,
Aug 06, 2013 | | Animal Communication, animal welfare, Dog Behavior, Home Health Care for Dogs
Happy 4th of July everyone,
Here is some excellent information from Amber Keiper of www.barfworld.com:
A Pet Parent’s Worst Nightmare: What To Do If Your Pet Goes Missing
By Amber Keiper
For those of us who treat our pets like our own kids, we simply can’t imagine the thought of losing them. So when a cherished pet goes missing, our entire life stops.
The 4th of July is tomorrow, and that means fireworks explosions, and many scared and lost pets. Intelligent pet parents need to know what proper steps to take in order to be successfully reunited with their pet as quickly as possible.
The first step is prevention. If your pet is allowed outdoors make sure to keep an eye on him and use a leash. Proper dog training is especially important so that you have control of your dogs in case they get startled or distracted while out and about. If you have a backyard for your pet to play in, make sure to check the perimeter of your fence or enclosure regularly for any places where your pet can get out.
Keep current identification tags on your pet’s collar at all times. Some pet parents prefer to have their pet microchipped. It’s important to be aware of the risks associated with microchipping your pet. (Check out our article on microchipping your dog here: http://www.barfworld.com/html/IPEzine/TIP_082011.html – DogsTalk).
The First 24 Hours
If you discover your pet has gone missing, don’t delay! Time is of the essence. Start by looking around the nearby area, searching areas that are familiar to your pet. Don’t hesitate to ask your neighbors or people in the area if they’ve seen your pet.
Call a few good friends to come and join you in your search. Make sure you have plenty of high-value treats and a leash on hand to help lure your pet out from hiding. A flashlight may also come in handy during your search to help look under cars, in dark corners, or for evening searches.
Does your furry friend have a favorite squeaky toy? Bring it along while you’re canvassing the neighborhood. Call out your pet’s name and squeak their toy to try and get their attention.
Day 2 Of Your Search
Make up some lost pet posters and put them up around your neighborhood and the area where your pet was last seen. Make sure to include:
A current picture of your pet
Color and markings
Any medical issues
Where they were last seen
A contact phone number in case they’re found
If you plan on offering a reward, make sure not to be too specific about how much you are offering or you may attract scammers who may try to swindle you for the reward. If someone who claims to have found your pet contacts you, make sure to meet them in a public place and don’t go alone.
Contact your local animal shelters, animal control facility, police department, and veterinary hospitals in case they may have your pet. Leave a copy of your lost pet poster with them in case someone ends up turning your pet in to them. There are even some online lost pet resources you can use such as:
You can also try social media resources such as Facebook and Twitter to spread the word about your lost dog or cat. Actually, some pets have been found because of the use of social media, so don’t rule this method out. If you don’t have a Facebook or Twitter account, you can sign up free…or ask a friend or family member to do it for you.
Day 3 And Beyond
Check your local newspaper’s lost and found section daily. Visit your local animal shelter every few days in case your pet shows up. Finally, don’t give up! 93% of dogs and 75% of cats that are reported lost are safely returned back to their owners so stay positive and keep searching.
Amber Keiper is the Marketing Assistant and Raw Diet Educator for BARF World Inc.. She and her husband have two former rescue animals that are now healthy and proud “BARF brats” – a terrier mix named Chewbacca (“Chewy”) and a tabby mix named Chiquita (“Chiqui”). For more articles like these and to learn more about the benefits of raw food for your pets, sign up for The Intelligent Pet monthly e-zine at www.barfworld.com.
The best to you and your pets,
Jul 04, 2013 | | Animal Communication, animal welfare, Dog Behavior, Stray Dog
Hello Everyone on this Memorial Day 2013,
Here is another wonderful episode from the Dogfiles and is apropos for Memorial Day:
A Few Good Dogs
Meet Helo, Bubba and Oscar, three incredible military working dogs based at Fort Meade, Maryland. Together, with their Army Handlers, they protect the men & women of the United States Armed Forces both here and overseas.
Wow, what can I say? This, our most ambitious episode of the Dog Files, was years in the making and I truly believe, one of our best yet. I couldn’t be prouder of final outcome. My hope is that by watching the video, people will gain an understanding of what dogs are capable of and what they do for us.
I’d like to thank the United States Army, SGT Ted Perry, SSG Anthony Moll & Helo, SGT Timothy Roye & Bubba and SSG Arthur Jones & Oscar. Thank you so much for welcoming the Dog Files into your life and opening up your world in a heartfelt and truthful way to us. And THANK YOU for your service! We are safe because of you.
I’d also like to thank Tyler Ginter, who made the entire episode possible. And good friends and colleagues, Khalid Mohtaseb and Kevin Griffin for spending two days with me filming this at Forte Meade.
P.S. Make sure to watch past the credits to see the crew putting on the bite suit and finding out what it’s like to be on the hazardous side of a military working dog.
To all of our servicemen, servicewomen, and military working dogs who have made the ultimate sacrifice, you have our eternal gratitude.
May 27, 2013 | | Animal Communication, animal welfare, Dog Behavior