Last month, a week after my labrador, Abby, spent a night at the vet’s office following lipoma removal surgery, she developed a cough. I let it go for a little over a day, as I waited to see if it was just a fluke since she was on antibiotics from her surgery and it was a pretty minor and only occasional cough. Listening to her, it just appeared that she had something in her throat. She hadn’t had any bones recently and she’s a grass eater, so I thought maybe she just had a piece of grass stuck in her throat. Unfortunately, by the next day when my scheduled post surgery check-in call with the vet came, the cough had progressed to being more frequent.
Last year, when my dog Roxie was diagnosed with cancer, I immediately came home and spent hours and hours researching things that would help get her better. A lot of the supplements I read about that were recommended, I’d never heard of. There was one that caught my attention though, because of how it is administered in dire cases and what ailments it can help with in both cats and dogs. It was vitamin C. I never realized how many things vitamin C was good for treating in cats and dogs until I researched further.
When I took in my first rescue cat, KK, I really didn’t know exactly what I was getting into. All the previous cats I’d ever been around as a kid had been outdoor barn cats, so acclimating one to indoor living was new to me. Indoor living was also apparently new to KK as well, given how determined he was to go outside whenever he wanted. As I found in my experience with KK and all my subsequent cats, you have to train a cat, just like a dog, to follow rules and learn what is and isn’t allowed in the home for it to be a happy and harmonious place.
While hiring someone to “talk” to your pet might seem crazy to more than a few people, when you find yourself in a situation where you feel like you’ve exhausted all other options, it starts seeming more and more like a good idea. That was the case for me when one of our barely one-year-old neutered male cats decided to go on an unauthorized journey. While I wanted to believe an animal communicator would be the answer to my prayers, I went into it with a healthy bit of skepticism. I hoped that this stranger I researched and hired was the real, legitimate deal and could help me get my young cat back.
This was a tough post to find the right wording for the title. I wrote several of them before settling on the final version you see. Part of me wanted the title to read, “If your dog stops eating, PLEASE don’t mess around. Get them to the vet!” Of course, that’s my gut reaction after losing Sadie so soon after she completely stopped eating one night. Then, there are the other titles I came up with like “First they stopped eating, then they died.” And while morbid and dramatic, that’s really kinda how my two experiences with this topic have played out. This post isn’t meant to scare you, but to show you how a dog’s lack of appetite can be a huge red flag that something is very seriously wrong with your dog.
Just like all of my other posts, this one is brought to you from experience. It involves dog eyes. Though I always try to treat my dogs at home and as naturally as possible, injuries or issues with their eyes are one thing I don’t mess around with. Once again, it took a bad experience for me to learn that lesson.
Over the years, I have spent a lot of money on dog beds. Indoor dog beds, outdoor dog beds, elevated dog beds, orthopedic dog beds, you name it, I’ve owned at least one of them. After nearly 20 years of buying many, many different dog beds, I can honestly say that there is only one that I can wholeheartedly recommend.
If you follow Saving Cats, Dogs and Cash on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/savingscatsanddogswhilesavingcash/), or have noticed in the pictures I share here on my blog featuring stories about my cats and dogs, you may notice that they don’t wear collars. The reason is that when I was a kid, our dogs did wear them. One incident with a collar has kind of traumatized me for life and is always in the back of my mind with my own pets.
It may or may not apply to you and your situation, but I wanted to share this story, if nothing else, to at least bring attention to the matter to maybe help someone else out there avoid having a similar incident.
“You’re wrong”, I remember telling the vet. “Nobody in my group is allowed to get cancer.” Of course, while there are a lot of things I can control in my crew, apparently keeping cancer out of our vocabulary didn’t turn out to be one of them. Despite not spraying my yard, not vaccinating beyond puppy shots, and using only tick medication and wormer sparingly, this is the diagnosis it had come down to. Somehow, I thought we were immune.
Three years ago the end of this month, a smelly, messy, long haired dog with bright blue eyes, poor treat taking manners and food aggression, showed up in the yard. In over 14 years of living here, not a single dog had ever come down the long drive to the house and hung around. They had all stayed up on the road where there was traffic and where they had been dumped out, waiting for their owner to return. Maybe Lacey was different because she had just wandered off or was older. Possibly, because the time was nearing when I had to let Justin, my 14-1/2-year-old dog go, Lacey was sent to help take away some of the pain. Or maybe it was just fate for her remaining time on earth to be spent in a loving home.