Sunday, May 19, 2013

The Pets

I know there are several people who read this blog who do wonder how the menagerie of animals in our house are doing these days, so in honor of my love of bulleted lists, here's an update:

  • Stetson: He is about to turn 12yo and so far seems to be doing well after his chemo finished back in February. He's currently being treated for a staph skin infection, but this has been something chronic for him for years, so it's not a big issue. He's down to only getting probiotics, K9 Immunity Plus, &  Omega3 each day, and monthly he gets a shot of Adequan for his arthritis. It seems to help the stiffness so I'll stick with it. His activity level and appetite haven't changed at all; AB and I had the dogs at the lake recently and they were sprinting all over the place.
  • Indy: He just turned 12yo and seems to be doing fine. His last vet check up showed perfect lab work, but he did have a new heart murmur. He actually goes to the vet this Thursday to have a cardiac BMP drawn (blood work); if it's elevated then I'll probably consent to an ultrasound just to see if he needs heart medications. Sigh. He also has to have his anal glands expressed every 2 months due to the scar tissue from the abscess years ago. Otherwise, he's tolerating Penny and spends most of his time sleeping (no difference from the past 12 years). I just recently switched the cats' food to Blue Buffalo Indoor Wilderness and they are doing great on it; less poop, less scavenging for food, and [cross fingers] fewer hairballs.
  • Baer: Baer is now (and I could be wrong b/c every time I ask AB his age I get a different answer) closing in on 9yo and for those who don't know, is at a pretty good age for a dog his size (105lbs). He did have a rough week recently; AB had put him out first thing in the morning a couple of weeks ago and when I went to let him in before lunch, he could hardly walk. His back legs weren't functioning well at all, he was painting, and his eyes were gooping. Needless to say, I panicked and rushed him straight to our vet. The vet was guessing that he may have been having an issue with hip dysplasia or an ACL injury, so she asked to run blood work, sedate him, and do x-rays. I left him with her and less than 30 minutes later she called to say that the blood work showed a platelet level of 47,000 (Stetson's is usually 300-400,000) and that he also was running a temp of 104. Rather than sedate him she asked to do a rapid tick titer due to the platelet levels. Next thing we know Baer has been diagnosed with canine ehrlichiosis and needs to start a long treatment of tetracycline antibiotics and pain medication. Ehrlichiosis is a tick-borne disease, and despite being on Frontline Plus, Baer had managed to get it. My vet said this is the first case she's seen in 9 years; considering my luck that's not a shocker. We started him on antibiotics and within a few days he was back to his annoyingly stubborn, food-obsessed self. He goes back this Thursday (with Indy) for a follow up CBC, at which time the vet will decide if he needs to continue on Tetracycline or switch to a different medication.
  • Penny: Penny just turned 1yo and is a deviant; she reminds me A LOT of Harrison when he was a kitten. She gets into everything, tears through the house, pounces on everything (human and animal), has a voracious appetite, and stinky farts. She's made a habit of streaking out the back door with the dogs so AB and I finally gave up on yelling at her and instead got her a bright green collar with a tag and a bell. So far she's good about coming back in after a little while. Health wise she seems okay, although she pants after heavy exercise- with my luck she will also have a heart problem!

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