Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Our first vet trips of the year!

It didn't take long for the dogs to require the services of All Paws Vet Clinic in 2012! 
Franklin went first. 
Just before Christmas, Franklin was at the clinic getting a skin infection checked out.  His seasonal allergies never went away and turned into a bacterial skin infection.  During that exam, we found a lump on his front leg that turned out to be cancerous.  It grew like crazy over the holidays so it had to be removed!  A week ago, Franklin had the surgery.  He is recovering well.  The type of cancer he has is unlikely to spread to other parts of his body. It does have a high rate of reoccurance though so we'll be keeping a close eye on that spot! 

Franklin also turned 12 this week!  We are grateful he's back on his paws and here to celebrate with us!  Moose bones for everyone!!

We started today with an early morning phone call to Dr. Stuart. 
Heyoka couldn't stand up.  His back legs just weren't working.  He has had a back problem before but this looked much more serious!  We were waiting at the clinic when the door was unlocked.  Heyoka had regained some use of his legs by then, but he was unhappy, weak, and wobbly!  

A big dose of prednisone, a muscle relaxer and some accupuncture perked him right up!  He's not 100% yet. His balance is still a little iffy, especially if he tries to run or move too fast!  He probably has a pinched nerve in his back.  Fortunately it seems to respond to medication.   Heyoka is getting older too; he's so goofy that it's hard to believe he's a senior dog!   I'm very glad to have the big goof home tonight!

Sunday, January 08, 2012

Almost silent bliss

Today was Fresh Bone Day in the dog yards....
The only sound in the yard is happy huskies chewing! 

Pure, almost silent bliss for both human and canines!

Sunday, January 01, 2012

Looking back and forward

2011 was not a kind year to our pack.  I'm not sorry to see it end! 
We lost six dogs and two cats.  Most of those deaths were unexpected; three of them took place over the most traumatic 19 hours of my life; something I hope to never come close to experiencing ever again! 

While we mourn and miss  Founder, Bandit, Mac, Ozzy, Earle, Kayleigh, Puff and Sophia, the year wasn't all bad either.
Heyoka got his throat problems fixed in April.  He's a different dog; he's like a puppy again. It's so much easier to be happy and active when you can breathe! It's a huge delight to watch him run, play and live up to his name, which means Clown! 
Our ridiculously timid dog, Delta, had a huge breakthrough late in the year.  His sudden attack bravery and trust deserves a post of it's own!  I'll do that soon! After almost a decade together, it's nice to see him still making some progress!
Chum's diagnosis was changed from fatal to chronic.  He doesn't have liver cancer; he has a form of steriod responsive hepatitis.  We are currently finishing a long weaning program for all his medications, except a low dose of prednisone.  He remains the same noisy, nutty goof he's always been.

The year wasn't all bad for the humans here either....I had surgery on my wrist and after almost 3 years of chronic pain have a pain-free fully functional joint again.  I got to spend some time down south with my family; attended my niece's wedding; toured my sister and her family around Haines, Alaska; spent two whole weeks with my niece, Naomi. 

In November, I had PRK surgery to free myself from glasses and contacts.  For the first two weeks, I thought I'd make a very expensive and painful mistake, but now I am seeing clearly and loving it!

Stuart's drilling business seems to be taking off. It takes him away from home for long periods, but he's always happy when he's way too busy!  It appears he has finally figured out what he wants to be when he grows up...if he grows up! :)

We expect that we will lose several more pack members in 2012.  There are two 15 year old dogs in our pack, several more well over 12 and everyone but Tehya is over 10!  The cats are also aging, although with fewer obvious health issues. 

While the new year will most certainly have it's heartaches, we have happy plans too!  We're heading to Honduras in February for a far too short break from the dark and cold.  I can't wait to snorkel and swim without fear of losing a contact!  In September I turn 40 and that too will hopefully be celebrated with a short trip somewhere.  I suggested Santa Clara, Cuba; Stuart said Newfoundland! It's my birthday so I think I should win that debate!

We're hoping to return to Costa Rica at the end of 2012...Christmas on a beach next year maybe!  Depending on dogsitters...every trip of more than 12 hours for us depends on a dogsitter!

In May my family will welcome a new human addition too.  My sister is expecting another baby. I can't wait to meet the new little one.  I do love being an Auntie!

Bring it on, 2012.  If 2011 didn't break us, you won't either!

Happy New Year!