When You Walk In The Room and Your Dog Is…

What?  When you walk in the room and your dog is what?

What could your dog possibly be doing that would surprise you when you walked into the room and caught him/her in the act?

You walk into the room and your dog KNOWS he’s not supposed to be on the couch, and yet, there he sits.

Or you turn your back on your dog in the yard, and when you turn back around, your dog has dug up your flower bed.

Or, you walk into the kitchen and see your dog with her head in the kitchen sink…

Hmmm….

At first I thought she was going to help me with the dishes. Then I realized, Delilah doesn’t do the dishes the same way I would!

What have you caught your dog doing that really surprised you?

Pet Blogger Showcase – August 19, 2017

I’ve fallen behind on blogging again. My goal to post three times per week didn’t happen this week. I think it’s been all those medical posts, they just exhaust me. Couple that with an increase in travel time with my new job, and some days, I just don’t have the energy.

Thankfully, the amazing bloggers below have been able to stay in the game.  Check out picks for this week’s showcase and let me know how I did.

Photo courtesy of Wag ‘N Woof Pets

8 Dog-Friendly Plants that Repel Bugs by Jan at Wag’N Woof Pets – Woof! If you have dogs (why do I say that? Why would you be reading this blog if you didn’t have dogs?) you know that bugs bring all manner of threat and illness to your dogs. When dealing with the nasty insects (fleas, ticks, mosquitos, black flies) you need every weapon in your arsenal to defeat these pesky buggers. Why not landscape your yard, and protect your pets all at the same time. If you’re looking to do just that, Jan’s post will get you started. The bonus, the plants are all safe for your dog.

Photo courtesy of I Love My Chi

A Pet Groomer’s Guide to Cleaning Dog Ears by Cathy at I Love My Chi – Long-eared or short-eared, it doesn’t matter. If you have a dog, it’s important to keep their ears clean.  Unless you have money to burn (are you looking to adopt a child? I’m older, but I promise I’ll be a good kid and take care of you in your senior years; ask my dogs, they’ll vouch for me.) Odds are you will need to clean your dog’s ears yourself. How and how often are the tricky questions, but Cathy, a pet groomer has the answers. Plus, there’s a video which shows you how to acclimate your dogs to ear cleaning, especially if they have concerns. There’s also a nifty little tip for a natural solution to assist in keeping those ears clean!

Photo Courtesy of Big Dog Mom

Big Dog Mom’s Most Glaring Weakness Revealed and it Will Surprise You by Big Dog Mom at Big Dog Mom – Here’s the surprise to me.  Her weakness isn’t for big dogs!  Alright, I take that back. Of course she has a weakness for big dogs, she HAS big dogs! I actually found her weakness a little on the funny side, because she does something very similar to something I do. (And it’s not the big dog thing again!) But that’s all I’m going to tell you, but after you read her post, you can guess in the comments. 🙂

 

Welcome to the Pet Blogger Showcase! This is the place for you to show off your favorite family friendly pet related posts, find other great posts to read, show some love to other bloggers and maybe be featured on one of the host blogs!

Meet the Hosts Behind the Showcase

Pet Faves– Living the pet lover lifestyle

Heart Like A Dog– The good, the bad, and the Oh My God of living with dogs

Felines Opines– The world from a feline point of view

Momma Kat and Her Bear Cat– The humorous and touching tales of a formerly homeless, yet always extraordinary, feline and his Momma, who’s just along for the ride.

About the Pet Blogger Showcase

Twice a month, On the 1st and 3rd Saturday of the month, you have the chance to link up one of your blog posts to the linky party link-up. Then visit 3 other blogs that joined the party and leave a meaningful comment. Feel free to share with your followers on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, etc. Then each week the hosts will feature their favorite 3 posts from the previous Linky Party on the new party post.

Pet Blogger Showcase Rules

  1. Share a pet specific post, past or present, from your blog in the linky below (be sure to link to your post page and not your home page). Family friendly posts only. (We love reading about other topics and niches, but posts that are not pet related will be deleted this includes any posts that don’t mention pets even if they are on a pet blog or if the post could pertain to pets.)
  2. Spread the Love! Leave a quality comment(more than just a few words) on at least 3 other posts from the linky party. Tell them why you love their post, encourage them, share on social media.
  3. Check back for the next linky party to see if you are featured on one of the hosts’ blogs.

*Note: By adding your post to the linky party you are giving the hosts permission to use an image from your post if your post will be a featured post on their blog to help encourage people to click through to your post. The image may be used individually or as a collage.

That’s it! No need to RSVP. No need to bring a covered dish. No need to add the linky to your post. No need to include a button. Just come join the party and PAWTY ON!



Droolery by Delilah

I don’t know about you, but after the past few weeks of writing posts about my dogs, and their various medical challenges, I find myself looking for something fun and light-hearted. Something that will make us smile or laugh. Unless this post grosses you out, (THAT really is an option.)

If you have a Labrador, you really don’t have to look far to find something to make you laugh or smile.
Labradors are so enthusiastic, and fun, it’s hard to engage with them and not laugh.

I never really noticed Delilah drooling when she first came to us. But as the years have gone on, and she gets food on the reg, her drooling has really increased. She drools practically all the time, which doesn’t say much for us, and the frequency of her treats. 😉 She even drools while walking, which is my pants are ALWAYS wet on one side of my leg.

A lot of times it grosses me out. I have a tendency to wear flip flops almost always in the house,
and I also kick them off when I sit down. If I’m eating and Delilah is thinking she’s getting something, she will hawk right in front of me, which coincidentally is also where my flip flops are.

You see where I’m going with this, right?

I get really grossed out when I get up and slip my foot into a flip flop only to have my foot slip IN the flip flop because she has drooled on them.

But there are also times when her drooling cracks us up. Those times tend to be when her drool forms into the shape of something, or when she shakes her head and her drool looks like part of her attire.

We’ve taken to calling it “Droolery,” and today I thought I’d share some of her works of art.

Ladies and gentlemen, may I present to you, “Droolery by Delilah.”

Enjoy.

Nose Drool

I would NEVER pierce my nose, but that doesn’t mean I can’t ‘dress’ it up.

Brow Drool

Piercing your brow is painful, why not use a little drool drop instead.

The Crown Drool, (it actually looks like a pendant!)

It’s a collar, it’s a chain, no, it’s Droolery by Delilah!

Big Daddy (it touches the ground) Drool

What’s a good piece of ‘Droolery’ without the right accent piece?

Breast Cancer Awareness Drool (She shook her head in the kitchen and decorated the cabinet.)

October is Breast Cancer Awareness month, remember, have your ‘puppies’ squeezed.

Do you have a drooler? What kind of ‘art’ does your drooler produce?

Raaaawhide!!

My dogs haven’t had a rawhide treat in years. I guess there are some things you just never forget though.

A couple three houses down from me got a Labrador Retriever puppy sometime in April. It’s been amazing watching her grow. When I went to Myrtle Beach in May, she was a puppy and when I came home a few days later, she had grown tremendously.

There are still a lot of people who give their dogs rawhide, and apparently Ginger is a dog that still gets one, because for the past week or so, there’s been a large rawhide chew right on the edge of their grass.

A couple of days ago, the rawhide managed to make its way into the street.

My dogs always seem to do the funniest things when I don’t have my camera handy, which is why I didn’t get the photo of Sampson trying to carry the rawhide home.

I did manage to snap a couple of photos of the dogs checking the rawhide out. For the record, they’ve both licked it and picked it up.

But they happily leave it for a treat.

Boy, I haven’t seen one of these in years!

.

I will leave it, but YOU WILL give me one of those tasty treats in your pocket!

Coincidentally, both dogs have been taking the same route for the past few days, despite the fact they usually go a different want.

Who says dogs don’t remember?

Cushing’s Disease in Dogs

It seems like for the past two years, every time one of my dogs goes to the vet with a symptom, Cushing’s Disease comes out of my vet’s mouth.

Some of you may recall Sampson had a urine test about 18 months ago, because the vet suspected…Cushing’s.

When Delilah’s Urinary Tract Infections started back in December, Cushing’s was once again brought up. Since I’d already researched Cushing’s symptoms, I was adamant, “She does not have Cushing’s.”

What is Cushing’s Disease?

In a nutshell, Cushing’s Disease is an over-production of a hormone called “cortisol.” Cortisol is a hormone produced in the Adrenal Glands (two little walnut-sized glands that rest on top of the kidneys.)  These little glands are the guys that produce that “fight or flight” response when you feel threatened. They are also the little guys that give moms that super human strength to lift a car off their child. (If you want to read up on Cushing s, you can check it out HERE.) Cushing’s can result from a tumor on the Adrenal Glands, but it can also be an Endocrine-active tumor on the Pituitary Gland, which is a pea-sized gland at the base of the brain. The Pituitary Gland (as I understand it) tells the Adrenal Glands, “Get cracking, it’s time to make the Cortisol. (Similar to the guy at Dunkin Donuts, who says, it’s time to make the donuts. For the record though, donuts are far more enjoyable than a tumor.)

When a body is producing too much Cortisol, you can imagine what kind of havoc it can wreak, and how having too much Cortisol in your body can be a very bad thing.

What are the symptoms for Cushing’s?

According to PetMD, the symptoms for Cushing’s are as follows:

  • Increased thirst and urination
  • Increased hunger
  • Increased panting
  • Pot-bellied abdomen
  • Obesity
  • Fat pads on the neck and shoulders
  • Recurrent infections of skin, ears, urinary tract, etc.
  • Loss of hair
  • Lack of energy
  • Inability to sleep (insomnia)
  • Muscle weakness
  • Infertility
  • Darkening of the skin
  • Appearance of blackheads on the skin
  • Thin skin
  • Bruising
  • Hard white scaly patches on the skin, elbows, etc. (associated with the disease calcinosis cutis)
  • Neurologic abnormalities (circling, behavioral changes, seizures, etc.) Source

I get compliments about my coat ALL THE TIME. The boots? Meh, not so much.

Of the symptoms listed above, there were only two that Delilah exhibited. The first was the bout she had with UTI’s that started in December and ran through the middle of April.

The other, is her unquenchable third.  Delilah drinks an enormous amount of water. In fact, if you filled her bowl with a gallon of water, she would drink it all.

A good portion of the time, her drinking is around meal times, or just before or after her walks.

Shortly after Delilah came to her forever home, I took her into the vet to question her massive water consumption. At that time, I suspected she had Diabetes, but that was ruled out with a blood test. We did discover however, that her Thyroid levels were low. We put her on Levoxythyrine and she’s done quite okay with it.

Hubby and I theorize that Delilah’s water consumption is a learned behavior. Our theory is Delilah has learned that water helps fill her up. We believe it stems from the time she spent on her own, on the Mean Streets of Lake Charles, but that is only a guess.

To help Delilah with her water intake, we moderate the amount of water that is put into her bowl at all times; because the water bowl is like the Field of Dreams…if you fill it, she will come. And drink it all.

It sucks for poor Sampson, but we are always at the ready to jump up and give him water when he indicates he requires some.

I tipped the bowl over again, something I couldn’t do if it HAD WATER IN IT!

As I stated earlier, this ‘argument’ if you will, with my vet has been ongoing for some time now.  In my vet’s defense, Cushing’s is very common in older dogs, and it is probably one of the easiest diseases to test for.

After Delilah finished the herbs prescribed by the Holistic Vet, we had her urine checked. When our vet called, she said there was no infection, but Delilah’s urine was more diluted that she’d like. When I asked what might cause that, she said “Cushing s.”

I’d finally had enough, “Maybe we should just have her tested so I can stop having this conversation,” I said to Hubby.

How is Cushing’s Disease diagnosed?

To test for Cushing’s plan to have your dog stay at the Vet’s office for the day.  There are a number of different tests your Vet can use, but mine used Low Dose Dexamethasone Suppression (LDDS.) This is the most accurate test to diagnosis Adrenal Cushing’s. Your dog is given a shot of Dexamethasone which is a synthetic cortisol, which should stop the body’s production of Cortisol. (Source)  The Vet then draws blood at various intervals. The Cortisol levels in dogs WITHOUT Cushing’s disease will decrease over time. However, if your dog HAS Cushing’s disease the levels will remain the same, or in some instances increase.(If the Adrenals and Pituitary are healthy, the gland knows there is enough Cortisol in the body, if they aren’t doing their job, the Adrenals will continue to produce Cortisol.)

There is some controversy/confusion over fasting with this test, which is one of the biggest reasons I hesitated to put Delilah through the test. Initially, my Vet said Delilah had to fast. Now this may seem silly to some, but I promised Delilah a long time ago, that as long as I had control over it, she would never miss a meal again. Then I was chatting with my friend, she said her dog only had to fast for the first draw. Then they fed him his breakfast. So I questioned my Vet’s office and was told, “Yes, fasting is required.” Hubby and I talked, and for the sake of putting the Cushing’s diagnosis to bed, we decided to go ahead with it.

Flash forward to the day before the test, and my Vet’s Office called to confirm, and said, “No fasting required.”

Chocolate Lab counter surfs

I don’t need YOU to make me breakfast, I can help myself!

I asked her if she were sure, and she said she’d check, but if I didn’t hear from her, to fast Delilah.

I called on my way home to see what the cutoff time was for food and water, and was again told, no fasting required.

I asked her to confirm with my vet, and she put me on hold, then told me again, “No fasting required.  We want Delilah to be happy and comfortable.” (As comfortable as she can be stuck in a crate with people poking her with needles all day long.) “Delilah will be happiest if she’s had breakfast,” I assured her.

The next morning Delilah got her breakfast, and Hubby dropped her off at the Vet’s office, and picked her up when it was over.

Delilah Does NOT have Cushing’s Disease (a.k.a. I TOLD YOU SO, I TOLD YOU SO, I TOLD YOU SO!)

The next night my Vet called with the results of Delilah’s test. “As you suspected, Delilah does not have Cushing’s Disease” my vet said. I turned and looked at Hubby with that smug look I save for when I’m being totally vindicated (yes, apparently I am making this about me,) and I think I actually did a fist pump or thumbs up too. I couldn’t actually say, “I told you so,” to my Vet, nor could I tell her that I’m done having this conversation, but I did tell her I was glad we had ruled it out, because I knew she was concerned about it. She did go on to say that just because Delilah doesn’t have Cushing’s now, doesn’t mean she can’t get it in the future. She is concerned because Delilah’s urine is diluted and she can’t seem to concentrate it.

I explained Hubby and my theory and she said typically dogs that drink a lot have an underlying issue, she didn’t rule out a behavioral issue, but she said those are pretty rare. She also suggested adding a bit of water to Delilah’s food, to see if that makes a difference.

The discussion then became, how far do we want to dig to get to the bottom of the UTI’s and the diluted urine; and the answer is, this is far enough. If the situation changes down the road, we will cross that bridge when/if we need to.

If it’s NOT Cushing’s Disease, what could it be?

The next day I did the Google to see what could make a dog not concentrate her urine, and found there are a number of other diseases/afflictions/conditions which could be causing this.  Chemical Imbalance of the Urine (Source), Water Diabetes (Source) are two of the illnesses I found. Since both of them require additional testing, we will not pursue a diagnosis at this time.

Are some breeds more susceptible to Cushing’s Disease than others?

The answer is yes! Some dog breeds like Labradors, Beagles, Poodles, Terriers, Dachshunds and German Shepherds are more susceptible to Cushing’s Disease than others. The disease also tends to strike middle-aged to senior dogs.

Are there different tests that diagnose Cushing’s Disease?

Yes.  There is a urine test that costs around $100, and last I knew, there was only one laboratory in the US that ran the test, and that is in Wisconsin. The test will NOT tell you if your dog HAS Cushing’s disease, but it can tell you that your dog DOES NOT have Cushing’s disease.

If you are concerned about leaving your dog at the Vet’s all day, or about the cost for the Cushing’s test (Delilah’s test was $246), then you may want to speak with your Vet about the urine test that can rule out the disease.

You mean peeing in a cup was an option? I call foul on you woman.

I chose to go with the actual LDDS test because of Delilah’s urine dilution issue.

Disclaimer: I am not a Veterinarian, I don’t play one on TV, and I haven’t stayed at a Holiday Inn Express lately. What I have shared here is my experience and understanding of Cushing’s Disease in Dogs. It is not meant to be used as a diagnostic tool.  If you have concerns that your dog might have Cushing’s Disease, please consult your own Veterinarian.

 

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