Archive for the 'Dog health' Category

Jazz into Spring

Sunday, March 14th, 2010

His health has bounced back. The Bach flowers worked on his panic attacks, the bronchodilator a couple times a week is keeping the coughing in check. His last acupuncture appointment, he was relaxed and almost happy, not annoyed. His holistic vet is giving him new herbs - Xiao Chai Hu Jia Yu Jin Tang (open the liver channels). We’ll wait a few months for more blood work, as long as he seems to be doing well. And his appetite is voracious.

Jazz health update

Wednesday, January 13th, 2010

He’s been hacking his little lungs out. He’s always done that, it’s endemic to the breed. But the last few weeks have been worse. We’re not sleeping. He has panic attacks every time he wakes.

I took him to the vet, who worried about the sound of his heart and lungs. But after a full cardiac workup, it was determined that his heart is fine, and his lungs are….well, the lungs of a 98-year-old guy. They started him on cough medicine, a bronchodilator, and antibiotics.

The bronchodilator has a caffeine-like effect. Jazz paced for 5 hours, I couldn’t even get him to sit down, he became frantic. We halved the dose after that night.

The drugs worked immediately, his coughing limited just to when he first gets up. He still shakes frantically though.

His holistic vet/acupuncturist visited last night. For the first time, he relaxed and enjoyed the acupuncture. She worked on his heart/lung energy. We’ve stopped the herbs, and the drugs, to re-think everything. If he starts to cough again, I can give him the bronchodilator.

The antibiotics undermined his appetite, and without food, he was throwing up.

My therapist put together a treatment bottle of Bach flower remedies for him: rescue, rock rose, aspen, mimulus, and schleranthus.

So he’s in detox. And we’ll see.

Friday, December 25th, 2009

Happy Christmas.

Jazz update

Sunday, November 22nd, 2009

Apologies for the absence - 2 weeks of visiting relatives, and then the first vacation in years.

First a report on Jazz. His kidney numbers were slightly improved. However, liver enzymes were elevated. The vet who did the exam (not his vet/acupuncturist) thought the enzymes might be the result of the home cooked diet (she’s not a fan).

Jazz had another treatment, which he settled into better than other times, and the acupuncturist has changed his herbs to address the liver problem - he’s now on Glenhia and Rehmannia (Yi Guan Jian). We’ll see how he’s doing in a month.

One of the visiting relatives is the owner of a very successful health food store, she was quite impressed by Jazz’s diet and bemused to see a dog enjoying broccoli and spinach.

A couple people have commented on the expense of treating Jazz through acupuncture, but I’m balancing quarterly acupuncture against the aggressive weekly treatment the vets recommending 1.5 years ago.

Real pawprints in the sand

Sunday, October 11th, 2009

Blind dog at the shore. What does he smell, with the wind and waves in his nose?

12th house moon

Friday, October 9th, 2009

Depending on whom you read, the signs for today were revealing or apocalyptic (or both). I woke up rather dreading the day, because on top of all the portents, it was a Gemini moon, my own personal monthly Friday the 13th (which in itself is a good day for me, being my birthday). But I had to laugh when I saw the news about the Nobel Peace prize. It’s an excellent reminder that it’s all just energy - and one person’s apocalypse nowish is someone else’s elysian field. The mind is its own place.

I was worried about seeing the vet this evening. Jazz has been doing very well on his home cooked diet, his energy and appetite are great, he has slimmed down. But he’s begun to have urinary accidents in the house. Not during the day while I’m gone, but in the evening when he’s excited about dinner, or in the morning when I can’t get him outside soon enough. I was concerned that he’d gotten worse, quickly, or that we had a new health problem to deal with. His general physical was fine, and we’ll have blood and urinalysis results in a few days.

Unfortunately, they couldn’t get all the tests because he fought them off. The technician was laughing, she said three of them couldn’t hold Jazz down and he was very feisty for a dog his age. It’s a good sign. I guess we all reach an age where we’ve had enough and just want to be left alone.

Puppy love

Wednesday, October 7th, 2009

NY Times has some articles about the health benefits of dog ownership.

When I investigated the energy that brought Jazz into my life (by accessing his akashic records), I was told that I’d never completely opened my heart to anyone since I was three years old, and Jazz was a safe haven for me to learn how. Not sure about the facts on my own heart - but I do get the safe haven that a dog offers. It’s communing wordlessly with another soul, one that’s focused on the here and now.

Dog song

Wednesday, September 2nd, 2009

How to deal this week? Stay in the here and now. Think of something simple and pleasurable while tackling these life changing issues.

What you’re fearing hasn’t happened yet and probably won’t.

I have a certain fondness for this song (it’s the ringtone on my cell for people I want to hear from). In June 2004 I was told to spend the weekend by the sea and my next great love would appear. Honestly, I don’t believe that the universe is that direct, but I went anyway (wasn’t exactly a quest, it was a weekend on the beach). What I heard was this song on the clock radio, waking me up one morning. Got me thinking about getting a dog and well….the next year I found Jazz.

Songs to Make Dogs Happy

Sunday, August 23rd, 2009

Jazz at Tyler State Park after his morning workout.

I took a class once on the psychobiology of music, based on work the professor had done (so he claimed) with NASA for long term space travel. I have a healthy skepticism about him and his self aggrandizing, but I believe in the ability of music to change our personal energy. My own playlists are finely tuned - sleep, meditation, concentration, signature music, and morning/exercise (same energy - confident and upbeat).

So of course I’m interested in the effect of music on dogs. When I’m out during the day, I leave the escape/love/heart channel on for Jazz. He doesn’t seem to care one way or another, but I’m happier picturing its calming effect.

A few months after Jazz came to live with me, I stumbled on “Songs to Make Dogs Happy.” Of course I bought it out of professional curiosity. The instructions say to listen to it the first time with your dog, but Jazz was dead asleep in the den, so I put the CD in the player in the dining room and went into the kitchen to do dishes. Next thing I know, he’s sitting in the dining room, looking up at the CD player, head cocked. He’s never done that before, or since.

Like anything, the effect wears off. I mostly use the CD when we travel long distances. When I put Jazz in the car, I play this to start us on our way. On the road again….

But the CD makes me happy. His energy mirrors mine. I particularly like You’re a Good Dog, I’ll Be Back, Outside, My Bed, and Adventure Dog.

Songs to Make Dogs Happy

Update on Jazz acupuncture

Saturday, August 22nd, 2009

He’s had his third treatment by now, months on the diet and the Chinese herbs. A urine test showed that his numbers were slightly elevated, but not at the worry level.

He’s been very energetic, even at his age and in this heat. We’ve discovered a park over in Pennsylvania that works well for us, a short walk to a stream where there’s a ramp down to the water, picnic tables, and plenty of things to sniff. He’s not that fond of the water, it surprises him to get his paws wet.

The homecooked diet is working very well - for one thing, I can buy in bulk because we’re eating the same things. Houseguests have commented on how good his food looks in his bowl - as it’s a fresh combination of ground meat and lightly-cooked frozen vegetables, it does look and smell good.