Thank you to 2 Brown Dawgs Blog for hosting this blog hop, which is “a little of this, a little of that, and everything in between”!
Update on Sheba’s Limp
I wrote about Sheba’s limp previously, and we had hoped it was just a minor injury that would go away, but that was not the case. It didn’t get increasingly worse, but it didn’t go away completely either. She was kind of up and down, with good days and worse days, and lately had seemed worse more often. She also started getting some hot spots from scratching, so between those two things, we knew it was time for a trip to the vet.
On our initial vet visit last Friday afternoon, our vet couldn’t really see what was going on. Sheba was a nervous nut, and just wouldn’t stop wiggling and walk normally. The limp showed up more when she moved more slowly, but she wasn’t going to do that! We kept saying it was her left front leg, but our vet disagreed and thought it was the right. He examined both legs but couldn’t feel anything out of the ordinary. So he advised restricted exercise….no running, jumping, ball playing, or stairs (almost impossible in our 3 level home). He also advised us that arthritis was a strong possibility, and that we also needed to rule out bone cancer, which is quite common in Golden Retrievers, though unlikely here. Therefore X-rays were scheduled for Tuesday of this week.
I was hoping it wasn’t an injury, because just keeping her quiet for the weekend was hard enough. We live on three levels and stairs just cannot be avoided. Cricket wants to play ball all the time, and how could we play with her and leave Sheba out? But what do you think I focused on the most for the three days we had to wait? Of course “bone cancer”. After having lost Moses back in July to cancer (of a different kind), that was my biggest worry. We didn’t expect it with Moses, so I was going with the theory that if I expect the worst, this time it won’t happen. As it turns out, I was right (not that I’m recommending my warped way of thinking)! I dropped Sheba off in the morning since she would have to be sedated for the x-rays, and they called me early afternoon to let me know that it was arthritis. Not that having arthritis is a good thing, but considering the alternative, it is the lesser of two evils! Also on the good side, she is only in the early stages of it, she has it in both shoulders but not much sign of it in her legs or paws.
So we have started her on the joint supplement Dasuquin. They also gave us free samples of Rimadyl for bad days. She was pretty gimped up (and a bit loopy) that night but she mostly slept anyway. We started her on the supplements immediately, and when she was still pretty gimpy the next morning, we gave her a Rimadyl before leaving for work. When we got home from work, she was like a new dog! There was very little sign of the limp and she was happy and energetic. She’s even better today. We are hoping with the right supplements (I know there are other options out there if the Dasuquin doesn’t do the trick, but it was highly recommended by a friend of ours, as well as our vet), and the proper exercise, we can keep her feeling good for quite a while. I plan to do more research also to know the right or wrong things to do for her. If anyone has experience with this, advice is always welcome!
Sheba’s First Professional Grooming
When Sheba was sedated for her x-rays they also gave her skin a good looking over to check her hot spots. They were all clearing up nicely as I thought they were. I had been putting coconut oil on them and I think that might have helped ward off infection. We’re not sure why she was itchy, but she has mostly stopped scratching now. One of the wonderful assistants in our vet’s office is also doing grooming there now. I had already been thinking I’d like to take Sheba there, but she is so nervous I didn’t know if it would be best for her or not. In my post last weekend, I wrote of how grooming her is such a challenge. Christina told me how they cleaned up some mats while they were checking her over, and they always trim our dog’s nails if they are sedated for any other procedure (free of charge). We got talking about the grooming, and she offered that they had time and could also trim the unruly fur on her paws, and even give her a bath if I wanted! What better time to give it a try? My back takes it so hard when I try to do these things myself.
They trimmed her paws all up so they look beautiful. They gave her a bath and a thorough brushing/combing. She was like a new dog when she came home….soft and smooth, and so pretty! She smelled so good too. We were thrilled! The women jokingly told us about how good she was…..ha ha, she was still half asleep! I told them to wait and see how she was next time I bring her in!
I feel so much less overwhelmed about the grooming now. I feel like I have a clean slate to work with, and now I can keep up better on her brushing and trimming. I love the women who work at our vet’s office, and I totally trust them. One of the reasons I never had the goldens groomed was because we don’t have a lot of groomers in our area, and I wasn’t comfortable with some of the ones I did know. Now I have a place to bring Sheba…..not all the time, but once in a while I can get her bathed and trimmed now, and it will be especially great in the Spring to get her really trimmed up for the Summer.
Good News in the Animal Welfare World
If you haven’t heard, there was a big step taken this last week in the battle against puppy mills. For years there has been a major loophole in the Animal Welfare Act, allowing large scale breeders who only sold online to be exempt from licensing and inspections. Breeders who sell to pet stores were regulated by this act, but those who sell directly to the public were not. I wrote about this in Part 2 of a series I wrote on puppy mills.
The USDA has finally closed that loophole! Now breeders who sell online (those who have more than 4 breeding females) will be required to be licensed and will be subject to inspections just like all other large scale breeders. Animal advocates, people like you and I, who signed petitions and had our voices heard over the last two years were a big part of getting this change to finally go through, led by large groups such as the Humane Society of the United States, the Humane Society Legislative Fund, and the Doris Day Animal League.
Large scale breeders who have been selling online, by phone, or by mail order are now required to let buyers see these animals in person, or to obtain a license from the USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service and be subject to inspections.
Don’t get me wrong; this is just a step. Even USDA licensed large scale breeders have conditions that you or I would find unsettling at the least. I wrote more about this in Part 6 of my series on puppy mills.The minimum standards could certainly be far, far better. But this is a step in the right direction, and for the most part these things have to be taken one step at a time. No one will rest until these puppy mills are shut down completely, and there is still a lot of work to be done.
So remember to spread the word reminding people not to buy from pet stores that get their puppies from puppy mills, or from a breeder if they cannot visit and see the breeding facility for themselves. Of course, if you can, “Adopt, Don’t Shop”.
You can read more about this recent change here:
- USDA Announces Landmark Rule to Crack Down on Online Puppy Mills
- USDA Cracks Down on Internet Pet Sales
You look great after your grooming! So glad the results from the vet weren’t cancer (my Mum is the same and always thinks the worst as it’s happened before), stay well buddy! 🙂
Wags to all,
Your pal Snoopy 🙂
Thank you, Snoopy! I’m sure your Mum knows what it’s like, there must be some serious grooming for a long haired guy like you! 🙂
I am feeling pretty good right now!
Tenacious Little Terrier says
Glad to hear the supplements are working for Sheba. She looks so clean and pretty after her groom.
Thank you, and thank you for coming by!
Ann Paws says
Sorry she has arthritis, but at least it’s nothing more than that like you said. Dasuquin is a great product. It would probably be one of the products on the top of my list for this. A lot of vet offices will offer a little bit of grooming. We did some where I worked. After some complaints about one or two animals, they started making people sign a waiver letting them know that we weren’t groomers and while we tried our best to make the pets look nice we mostly groom for functionality over looks lol… Most people were satisfied though.
Thanks, Ann, I’m glad to hear good things about Dasuquin, so I know it’s a good place to start.
Yes, I imagine our vet’s office wouldn’t be doing grooming of poodles and other more complicated dogs, but they will be perfect for people like us who just want their dogs clean and shiny, and a bit neater!
Jackie Bouchard says
Thank heaven it’s “just” arthritis. After our last pup, I kinda freak out any time Rita or any other pup starts limping.
I saw that news about the loophole for selling online closing. As you said, it’s only a step, but it’s a good one.
It’s hard to find the balance between completely freaking out when our dogs don’t feel well, and running to the vet for every little thing: and being sure they are checked out if they need to be. Because of what happened with Moses I will now freak out whenever one of our pets loses their appetite!
Let’s hope the next step in eradicating puppy mills comes soon, or that the public finally catches on and stops buying these poor animals!
2 brown dawgs says
Thanks so much for participating in TNT. I am so happy you had good news about Sheba. I hope the supplements help.
Don’t you love how the groomers trim their paws? I used to take our Golden every three months to have him groomed mostly because his paws looked so nice and I didn’t have to butcher them….lol. I tried many groomers and finally settled on a groomer who worked at our vet. It worked out very well and eventually he liked going there.
I am not at all thrilled with those USDA rules. They are overly broad and will be very hard on hobby breeders. The rules count breeding females maintained and not number of dogs sold. Many breeders co-own breeding females in an effort to protect genetic diversity in a breed and not all of them are bred, but the rule does not distinguish. There are other things that are bad but you get the idea. And why exempt rescues? There are some bad rescues. If keeping dogs in a certain condition is the goal, then make it apply to all places that hold a large number of dogs.
I do hope that maybe Sheba will get more comfortable being groomed if we take her every so often.
I did not know the USDA rules would effect the hobby breeders so much; I didn’t know about the co-ownership aspect. It does seem like number of dogs sold would make more sense. I thought I read that as long as they allowed the public to see the facilities, then they could be exempt from the licensing? I would have to do more research to be sure.
Typically, when the government does things, innocent people get affected as well as the people that the rules are really made for. It’s too bad we can’t rely on human nature to stop these bad things, so the government doesn’t have to make laws to try to control them. I know there are bad rescues out there too, and I suppose if they do start including them, then the good ones will also be negatively affected. Ugh, it seems there is just no easy answer to these things.
2 brown dawgs says
It seems they put an exemption in for dogs that are sold for hunting rather than pets. (There may be other exemptions but that is the one I saw discussed.) I suppose they are trying to exempt some part of hobby breeders.
You are right that as long as they allow the buyer to come and see their premises they are exempt. But where you have an unusual breed, it is not uncommon to ship (or hire a ground transporter) especially if it is a repeat puppy buyer.
You are right, no easy answers.
Oh my! I’m glad to hear it’s just arthritis and you’re getting it early enough to be proactive with joint supplements. I do hope the Dasuquin works as Titan has been on it up until the past two months when we switch to Wag. Why did they sedate Sheba for x-rays? Was she too nervous? That Rimadyl is pretty good stuff but it does make Titan feel “too” good at times so I need to calm him with other techniques (aka melatonin) and now suggested by the vet Benadryl to keep him down. Crazy boogers, right?
I don’t know how all you “hairy” dogs peeps do it! When I was looking for a new companion one of my things I looked for was low maintenance and mininmal shed. It’s a good thing Titan doesn’t need to be groomed like Sheba cause he would definitely be a Hot Mess! LOL
I look forward to hearing about your progress with the joint supplements. I’ve tried at least 5 different ones and as Giz said above, not all work for certain dogs and/or ailments. You know where to find me if ya need to pick my brain more. 🙂
Thanks, Bren! Yes, Sheba is very nervous and that’s why they sedate. Plus the manipulation they have to do to get the x-rays can be painful I believe.
Oh, I didn’t know that the Rimadyl can hype them up…hopefully we don’t have to use it too much for a while! Sheba is wound enough as it is!
We only ended up with goldens because a friend had the puppies. Otherwise I think we would have chosen a short haired dog! That will definitely be a consideration for any future dogs.
Thanks for being available if I need to pick your brain!
So glad that Moses condition isn’t too serious and that it’s manageable…You must be so relieved…Like others, I’m pleased about the USDA ruling but it’s just a baby step…much work remains to be done
Doh! Don’t know why i typed Moses…of course I meant Sheba…so sorry for that brain burp *embarrassed ears*
Don’t worry….I knew who you meant! 🙂 I know when I comment on blogs with multiple dogs I sometimes get confused on who’s who! I’ve probably screwed it up without even realizing!
Thank you, I have found that my mood has been much improved since we got the news. I think I was even worrying more than I realized.
You are right, and we won’t rest until puppy mills are gone completely!
So happy that Sheba’s doing better and that it’s not the big C!!! 🙂
Thank you Auntie Sheryl!
We loooooove Dasuquin. Seriously, I swear by the stuff. Lucas had a chronic limp for ages, and it turned it right around for him. He also gets a fish oil supplement which is supposed to help “oil” the joints and Rimadyl for the bad days (which are mostly deep winter and after intense play). I really hope it makes a difference for dear Cricket!!!
I’m so glad to hear that, Maggie! I did see something about fish oil in my preliminary research, so that sounds like something to consider also. I would really like her to still be able to do things like short, easy runs, or long walks or easy hikes, so we want to get her as better as possible.
Happy for you that those pills are working for the arthritis, they did nothing for my sister, but we have learned that some breeds don’t respond to certain medicines. We now have some other meds that do help a lot which is wonderful!
It’s good to know there are other options out there, if these don’t work as well as we’d like. My friend who recommended them also has golden retrievers, so maybe that will be a factor; I didn’t know that about some breeds not responding to certain meds, very interesting.