31 August 2010

{30aug2010: reunion}

It's been a while since we've been to Marymoor after Darwin's bout with kennel cough, which she seems to have picked up from the Dane Outreach event we went to earlier in the month (we've heard a few of the other Danes that went came down with the cough too).  We got a late start when we headed out there yesterday, but it turned out to be great timing.  As we were halfway through our first lap, we ran into another blue Dane.  I saw his collar and knew right away it was a Greenbelts collar and that this was probably Darwin's brother, Kona.  And it was!

He was really healthy and happy.  It's been a few months since the last time Darwin and Kona saw each other, but they had fun playing bitey (and barky) face.  Kona's a barker when he wants someone to play with him, and Darwin's a barker when someone barks at her, so there was a whole lot of barking going on.

It was kind of funny because to everyone else walking by who heard these two, they probably thought there was a dog fight.

We chatted with his mom for a bit and she showed us some of his new tricks (he actually rolls over... Darwin would never).  Hopefully we'll see him again soon!
After we left Kona, we ran into the rest of the Dane group and Darwin made a new friend with a big blue 16 month old boy, Megatron!

It's funny, when we first met the Marymoor Dane group last year, Darwin was the youngest and one of the only blue Danes, and now there are a lot of younger pups and a lot more blues.  Just yesterday at the park there was Darwin, Kona, Misha, Megatron, and a baby girl puppy (who's name I'm blanking on) and usually there are a few more too.  

27 August 2010

{26aug2010: for laughs}

via the agitator

{26aug2010: ndd}

It's National Dog Day!
Go and spoil your favorite canine companion!

I also came across this petition via Twitter trying to encourage hotels to remove their restrictions based on size.  Having a Dane and trying to travel with her doesn't give us as many options for hotels compared to if we had a  Chihuahua or Pomeranian.

26 August 2010

{25aug2010: wordless Wednesday}

Nervous wonky ear edition.


**when Darwin hears things she's unsure about, her ears go crazy and one usually flops up on her head all funny. 

24 August 2010

{24aug2010: Camping... lake time}

After heating up in the sun, we headed over to Cooper Lake for a hike and to dip our toes in the water.  The campground area was pretty crowded so we followed a trail around the edge of the lake to see how far it would take us.  We thought maybe it would take us around the whole lake, but after we reached the bottom of the lake the trail was less defined and trying to navigate through branches and weeds got to be a little too much.
Darwin had a blast at the water.  We'd walk along the trail and take breaks along the lake so she could get a drink.  Everytime we'd go down, she'd get a case of the zoomies, and dash from the water up to the trail and back again.  

She's still learning how to play with a frisbee.  So far she likes to dig at it and then bite it til it breaks apart.
Even though it was HOT out, the water was still freezing!  But I did dip my feet in for a game of tug.
It was beautiful at the lake, the only problem was there were TONS of flies and mosquitoes.   They wouldn't leave Darwin alone and she was only willing to chase them for so long.  I felt bad for her so we packed up our things and headed back to camp where Darwin and I could hide from the pests in our tent.
This picture cracks me up, because you can see where Dar's pushing the tent with her nose.
We even had nap time.  Darwin was funny and kept pushing my head off the pillow so she could get her head on.

Despite the flies and mosquitoes, we had a fun, relaxing time.  Hopefully we'll do it more than once next year!

{23aug2010: camping}

Sorry it's taken me a while to get this post up.  I'm currently obsessed with The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo  book series

(I'm on book 2) and can't stop reading!

Anyway, onto camping! 

We went on one camping trip last year and we wanted to do it more this year, but the weather this summer has been unusually cold and we've only made it out once so far (could be the only time as college football season is starting up in a week and a half and Jason cannot be moved from the tv during college football season).  This time we went by ourselves, and being newbies we weren't sure how it was going to go.  We had spent most o the week running around to REI and Fred Meyer and other stores getting all our supplies and then we were slowed down by the 3am emergency vet visit and we weren't sure if we should go camping or not at that point.  We decided to stick it out and rushed home after work on Friday threw everything in the car and headed out east to find a (hopefully good) spot. 
We drove out to Wenatchee National Forest  and drove through a couple of full campgrounds.  It was already nearing 7pm and I was worried about it getting dark and not finding a spot, so we ditched the campground idea and found a random old fire service road (a few feet into the over grown road there were boulders blocking access) near Cooper Lake and set up camp there.

I worry about Darwin being a dark colored dog, and knowing it gets pitch black outside I ordered her an LED lighted collar, partly for camping, and also for winter dog park or walk times since it gets dark by 6pm in Seattle. 
And to be even more "worried mom" I even bought a bear bell for her... you never know when a bear will sneak up on you. hehe. The bear bell also helped keep track of where she was wondering off to without having to be watching her like a hawk.

The spot we found was perfect... away from all the other campers and nestled in the trees with enough flat space for our tent and kitchen set up, and room for Darwin to explore.
It was actually a pretty hot weekend and Darwin is not a fan of the heat.  After standing in the sun for a bit, she finally gave up and found shade on the side of the tent.

After getting some reading in, we decided to get a move on and check out the lake.

Stay tuned for lake action!

19 August 2010

{18aug2010: mostly wordless Wednesday}

Impromptu play session edition.
During one of our walks a few weeks ago Darwin made a new friend with a 1.5year old Golden puppy and a Collie.  They had a short play session in a random front yard of some house (the owners of the house came outside to watch the play session for a little while).
The owners of the Golden kept making remarks about how good and well behaved Darwin is (their Golden kept running in the street - not a busy street - and Darwin kept on the sidewalk for the most part). 


18 August 2010

{17aug2010: recall}

image via ohmidog!
Another Merrick product added to the recall list!  

"Merrick Pet Care Inc. of Amarillo, Texas, has expanded its dog treats recall to include all lots of the two products – Beef Filet Squares for Dogs and Texas Hold’ems treats.
The treats come in 10-ounce packages and were shipped to distributors and retailers throughout the United States, according to Merrick.
While the expanded recall is based on salmonella concerns, no illnesses related to the product have been reported.
Merrick issued limited recalls of its Beef Filet Squares and Texas Hold’ems treats in July and August after samples turned up positive for salmonella.
Pets with salmonella infections may be lethargic and have diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, fever and vomiting. Some pets may have decreased appetite, fever and abdominal pain. Infected but otherwise healthy pets can be carriers and infect other animals or humans, according to the company.
Dog owners are urged to contact their veterinarian if their pet has consumed the recalled product and is exhibiting symptoms.
Consumers who have purchased 10-ounce packages of Beef Filet Squares for Dogs and Texas Hold’ems are urged to return the unused portion to the place of purchase for a full refund. Consumers with questions may contact the company at 800-664-7387, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. CDT."

Dang!  neither are the ones we buy for Dar, but it's quite worrying that they are adding to their recall!

{17aug2010: cough cough}

Thanks for all your concerns regarding Darwin's latest ailment!  All her issues made me think of a research speech/paper I had to do in college about Munchausen Syndrome by Proxy a condition where a parent (usually a mom) makes their child ill or injured to get attention from others.  The movie The Sixth Sense showed a case of that.
Anyway, we had a little getaway this weekend (more on that in another post) and her cough/hacking was a little better, but still there and her appetite still wasn't what it usually is.  By Sunday night she was still hacking so I called our vet yesterday to get her in to get checked out.  Her appointment was scheduled for 930 this morning.  Before her regular vet appointment she had a 730 (omg so early!) appointment at her holistic vet for her accupunture treatment.  While we were there we were talking about Darwin's hacking and she immediately said it's kennel cough.  I told her how we went to the emergency vet last week (she doesn't think the one we went to is very good and recommended others) and told them I thought it could be kennel cough but the on-call vet was quick to say it was not kennel cough but an irritation in her throat.  She said the Prednisone Darwin was on for her back problems left her with a weaker immune system than normal so she had a higher chance of getting any kind of cold or infection.  She even laughed at the Bordetella vaccine saying that she thought it was a waste as Bordetella is only one type of kennel cough and the vaccine only lasts for a couple months.  We got sent home with some Chinese herbs and Astralagus root to boost her immune system.  I canceled our regular vet appointment and we'll see how Darwin does on just these Chinese herbs.
As I've said before, thank goodness for pet insurance.  After last weeks emergency visit we racked up a thousand dollar plus bill and when we picked up Dar, we left them with a claim form to fill out and fax in.  By Sunday we got an email from Trupanion saying they received our claim and last night got a follow up email notifying us that our claim was processed and we'll be getting back our 90% (minus exam fees).  Woo hoo!  Even though Trupanion doesn't cover holistic treatments I'm still very happy with them and it's even better now that they've done away with their cap/limit on payouts.  It used to be about $20,000 cap, and at the rate we've been going with Darwin we would've reached that in couple years.  Now with no cap we can breathe easy!  
And because I don't like pictureless posts, here's a peek for an upcoming post!

13 August 2010

{12aug2010: oh what a night}

We are all exhausted.  If owning a dog is similar to having a kid, then man we'll be well trained for the future. 
After coming home from work yesterday, Jason took Darwin on her walk while I made her weeks worth of dinners.  When they got back instead of coming to the kitchen to get her food, she laid down on the floor in the living room half heartedly gnawing on a bone.  We didn't think too much of it til we ate our dinner and she still didn't bug us for food and wasn't interested at all in her raw veggie/meat diet that she usually wolfs down.  She curled up on the couch and started hacking/coughing.  We thought she was going to throw up something but nothing came up and she laid back down.  I had noticed she had done that the night before, and wasn't that concerned til she did it again.  I googled her symptoms and what came up was possibly kennel cough, heart worms, or something stuck in her throat.  Since she was supposed to have her weekly play date with her brother today, I quickly emailed Kristie to let her know we were going to have to cancel in case it was kennel cough I didn't want her spreading it to Boo or Gino or Seamus.  We planned to call the vet in the morning and take her in.  
By 1130 she was still coughing so I decided to "sleep" in the living room with her to keep a close eye on her.  Soon every hour to half and hour she was up hacking/coughing/throwing up foamy saliva.  I was up watching her trying to throw a towel or blanket under her spit up (after all Jason had just steam cleaned the carpets the other weekend) and all of Darwin's hacking noise kept Jason up too.  At 230 we were all up trying to decide whether to take her to the emergency vet then or just wait it out til the morning to go to our regular vet.  We thought we'd wait, but by 300 with the next round of hacking we were changing our clothes and heading out to the vet.  
We got checked in quickly and the vet quickly ruled out bloat (which we kind of knew, but nice to know for sure) and said they would need to take xrays to see if Darwin had anything stuck in her throat.  If there was nothing there they would probably prescribe anti-inflamatories and antibiotics.   They were going to have to sedate her to get the xrays and then they'd call us in an hour with the results.  
We headed home and tried to sleep... slept through the call an hour later and managed to pick up the second call at 6am.  Turns out there was nothing in her throat, but it was very raw and inflamed.  The vet said it's common for dogs to ingest something that just irritates their throat.  She said we could pick Darwin up in a couple hours.
We finally got to sleep and peeled ourselves out of the house at 830 to pick her up.  While we were paying and getting her prescriptions we could hear a lot of whining in the back room.  The receptionist said Darwin must've known we were there because she was laying down quietly til we walked in then she was up and whining... poor girl.
{this is what i think of you emergency vet!!!}
{let's get out of here!} 
We dropped Jason off at work and I stayed home to monitor Darwin.  She doesn't seem to do well coming off of anesthesia (needy, whiny, leaky) and I wanted to make sure she was going to be ok.
One of the instructions from the vet was no food or water for four hours after we picked her up.  Darwin was not happy about that and stood in the kitchen for a long time whining.   After a while she finally settled down on her bed.
{look at my ghetto bandage... a paper towel and tape!}

She would sleep for a little bit, then get up whining for food and water.  At one point she stood, front feet on the couch, for a good 10 to 15 minutes whining, until she finally gave up and laid down on her bed again.
Poor girl.  We're all beat and need a good nights sleep!