Good Vets Make All The Difference!

Holy smokes, there is only 33 days left until Christmas! Ha, sorry to freak y’all out, had to:P

So today, I volunteered to take my mom’s cat in to her vet’s office to have his ears checked, what I discovered there may shock you: ALL VETS ARE NOT ALIKE.  I’ve never been so thankful to have had 2 amazing vet’s in the time I’ve had my dog. When we lived in Vancouver, we went to Como Lake Veterinary in Coquitlam. Now in the Kootenays we go to Selkirk Veterinary. Both vet’s have been above kind, caring and gentle with my dog. Today, this vet had zero bed side manner, treated me like I knew nothing about anything and his assistant was extremely dis-heartening. I watched as she brutally grabbed my mothers cat and treated him as if he were a meaningless rag doll. Then after overhearing that a dog was licking their bandage in the kennels, I watched as she walked to the kennel and screamed at the dog to “stop it”. After biting my tongue, and completing our appointment, I had to wait, with my terrified cat in tow, for 10 minutes as they figured out who was going to accept my debit card payment and just how much they were going to charge me for this visit. Never again. My mother has since been told to take her business elsewhere. 

It is important to know what you want in a pet care provider, kindness, empathy and gentleness are high on my list–and I won’t settle for less. Figure out what is important to you and whether or not you fully trust your provider–you shouldn’t settle for anything less either.

Poor Pet Parenting At Its Finest!

Recently, I posted about how our dogs are our own little creations. You spoil them–they act spoiled. You treat them like shit-they act like devils. A dog in our neighbour hood was put down this week because he got out of his yard and attacked another dog, near to the point of death. He’s still at the vet’s receiving emergency care for injuries that may end up being fatal.

Background:

The dog that attacked is always left alone with only his doggy sidekick, outside, and has very few social connections to other people, dogs, and even his own family. I viewed this dog as more of a lawn ornament. People in this area seem to think that owning a dog is easy: food, water, done. What people seem to forget is that pet’s attitudes are a direct result of how we treat them.I believe that this dog was bored and out looking for some excitement.

The dog that was attacked has had some behaviour issues in the past, but his owner has worked tirelessly to keep him in check: lots of walks, training, and she tries her best to keep him at home. However, keeping him at home means he is tied up outside. He really didn’t stand a chance once the fight began, couldn’t even run away because he was tied.

Now the owner of the attacked dog told the owners of the other to have him put down. He had been showing signs of aggressiveness recently with more and more people, it was probably a matter of time before he bit someone. Do I think he was given a fair chance at a good life–no! His owners clearly have no sense, as this is not the first, or second time that they have proven to be terrible pet parents by letting an animal die, or be forced to euthanize a pet.

This is exactly how breeds get bad raps. People treat them poorly and they act out. Such a waste of a beautiful life, but in the end, probably the only solution at this point. People, seriously, your dog starts acting out, find yourselves a good, positive reinforcement trainer and be responsible enough to try to correct the problem. If you are unwilling to treat your dog as if they are your child–don’t get one.

Rest in peace Moose.

Neighbourhood Dogs: What’s The Harm…Right?

Since Oliver and I moved from the big city of Vancouver to our small, country-fabulous home in the Kootenays, I’ve noticed a growing trend that has probably been accepted for ages, but is really starting to irritate me. Neighbourhood dogs. Ever experience them? Basically, neighbourhood dogs are dogs with homes that are allowed to roam the areas surrounding their homes.

My neighbour, who lives 2 doors down, has a older lab mix whom is constantly out walking the “hood”. This dog looks slightly senile to me, pretty confused, walks out in traffic, etc. He is always wandering (confusedly) on the sidewalk, or a few blocks down. And they let him out of their unfenced yard (which is right on the corner of a busy street) fully knowing how easy it would be for him to get lost or worse, get hit by a vehicle.

A month ago another incident happened, someone’s dog came bolting out of their yard, snarling, and acting aggressively as he ran towards my small dog. Panicked, I picked Oliver up and held him to my chest to shield him from a bite I was sure was to occur. Luckily, the owner realized and came bolting after her dog.

Then today, while driving along the highway (80 km/hr), I came around a corner and nearly smacked a white bull terrier walking down the centre line. He had a red collar on so he must have a home and then he slowly decided to walk up the next street which he seemed to know well; Hopefully, he walked back home.

The dangers surrounding this neighbourhood phenomenon are insane. There are the obvious dangers: attacking people, or sadly, being attacked; being hit by a vehicle; causing a vehicle to diverge and get into an accident; and getting lost. But what about some other dangers? We know there are some sick people in this world, people who poison, beat, steal, or injure animals just for the hell of it. What about the dangers from exploring strange areas– falling into wells; ingesting garbage which can contain household poisons (xylitol, cleaners, etc); getting tied up to something/stuck to an object; or dehydration/starvation.

Your dog may be the friendliest dog on the planet, your neighbours may love his visits, but if that is the case they’ll ask to visit your pet. There is no reason why your dog needs to be roaming the streets. I’m not even going to mention how this irresponsibility reflects on owners constantly trying to fight prejudices against pet owners because frankly it’s obvious. Fence your yards, or leash your pets, I don’t care, but keep them at home!

What Lurks In The Dark

 

So some not-so-nice person decided to go viral with the following message on Facebook a few weeks ago. I decided to ignore it, but today I think since Halloween is getting so close we can’t take any chances.


First of all, any dog/cat, no matter what breed is at risk on this day. Older teens get drunk and think Halloween is a perfect opportunity to hide behind a mask and cause trouble. Thousands of pets flood emergency vet clinics every night on Halloween, stray pets or pets lost and away from their loved ones. It’s very important on Halloween to make sure your pet has all it’s identification on, and you may want to consider microchipping in the days following if your pet doesn’t already have one. Bonfires, fireworks, and trick or treaters can cause much stress and anxiety in animals and may cause them to seek a calmer environment, which makes them more willing to jump a fence, break a leash, or run out the doggy door.

Things you can do to keep your pet happy and safe at home:

  • Give them a job (a nice raw, meaty bone, or a new trick to learn)
  • Invest in a Thunder Shirt
  • Lock all the doors
  • Give your dog/cat a massage
  • Consider dispensing “Bach’s Remedy” in their water dish
  • Don’t let them go out to pee alone
  • Keep them near you, even if you’re just watching t.v., they’ll find solace in your touch, even if minor
  • Put on some light, classical music. Studies show dogs seem more relaxed with some good ol’ Bach, Chopin, or Mozart playing in the background. Some animal shelters even play it in cat and dog rooms.
  • When it’s time for bed (if they’re not already cover hogs) let them sleep with you, or bring their beds into your room for the night. Chances are they’ll hear things through the night and bark or get scared.
  • Consider leaving a box in your yard for any homeless pets seeking shelter

Please reports any suspicious activities to the police and if any animals are involved also phone the local SPCA.