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21st Century Lesbian Trailer Trash

These are the mad musings of a middle aged woman, dyke, nurse, poet. I have a dog, a cat, a mobile home, and delusions of grandeur.

Name:
Location: California, United States

Monday, July 03, 2006

All That Jaz

I bought a new Dell computer today with all the trimmings. I'm so excited. It should be here in about a week or so. Then I'll be able to post pics of fun things like the dog, my messy office, and my little tin house.

Today we took a trip to the regular vet; that is not Dr. Ford. Jaz needed to have her vaccines updated and I also wanted to get a look at her medical record and establish a baseline for her.

What I have learned (and what was again confirmed today) is that one must be very assertive with the average vet. It was necessary to ask him leading questions like "Isn't it true that chronic skin conditions in dogs are frequently associated with food allergies and/or immune disorders?"

The first thing he recommended was a lower protein diet. So we had to have the discussion about protein wasting bowel issues. We agreed that I would start her on a prescription diet but that he would draw a total protein and albumin on her which won't tell me if she has irritable bowel but it will let me know if she is currently in the safe zone. Her stool is somewhat funky which can be an indicator of irritable bowel.

He prescribed an anti itch shampoo to use after the antifungal shampoo for comfort. He also gave us some special fish oil capsules with Omega 3 and other fatty acids for her skin. And we also picked up a newer product called Revolution for combating fleas, ticks, scabies and heatworm. Pretty nifty.

What I learned was that this dog has never been tested for heartworm, has never had thorough basline blood work, and has never been given anything other than the antifungal shampoo to treat her skin condition. I'm not entirely convinced that the importance of these things were thoroughly outlined to this woman. Because I believe if she had understood the big picture she would have followed through.

I had to push to get the vet to take the next step. He wasn't about to take it any further. This is not a shoddy street corner vet. It is one of the better veterinary clinics in the county. People bring their animals from miles away and have done so for years.

Her previous owner is a loving, caring, educated professional woman. She loved this little dog and took wonderful care of her. But she doesn't know what I have learned the hard way. "Don't take their word for it." R. did extensive research before buying this dog.

Jaz came from a Texas breeder. We are in California. If you must buy a purebred, I heartily advise against it without seeing the dogs and the kennels. Educate yourself about common medical problems found in the breed and ask what the breeder has done to select out those traits.

Over 50% of all purebred animals end up in shelters within the first 2 years of life. This is right where Jaz was headed. She might be there right now, or worse, had Maggie not died when she did. Because of her skin condition she might not have been so easy to place. Or she might have been placed with someone who is ignorant of the time and expense with caring for such a dog, ending in a failed adoption.

I'm glad that I have her. She's a real sweetheart. But she will always be a high maintenance animal. How I wish that we could eliminate irresponsible breeders. The shelters are full of wonderful animals waiting for adoption.

9 Comments:

Blogger ~ nellenelle said...

Wise words Pam... we bought Bailey from a local breeder, where we went, met her, chatted, toured, etc... very convinced she knew what she was doing, and she did. She also scrutinised us for acceptability for Bailey, and I know she has rejected others... that told me much.

And a good vet is a wonder!

Yahoo on the new Dell, we look forward to Pampics and poochpics!

7:23 PM PDT  
Blogger Ginny said...

I recenly read in Dog Fancy magazine (http://www.dogchannel.com) that low thyroid can cause itchy skin, bowel and weight issues in dogs... Then it clicked, and I was like DUH! It causes the same symptoms in humans, too... I wish it clicked when my Maggy was still here. I'm pretty sure that she had low thyroid... She was bald in several places.

Don't feel bad if you have to nag your vet to do something... It's your fur baby, and she deserves the best treatment.

Congrats on the computer. Dell delivers very fast... I had mine in about 3 days, even though they said 1-2 weeks.

9:22 PM PDT  
Blogger Syd said...

GREAT post!!!

and Yay!! on the new 'puter purchase.

9:23 PM PDT  
Blogger Sangroncito said...

Congrats on the new computer! You're gonna love it.

3:55 AM PDT  
Blogger KMae said...

Ooooooooh, Kwooooool!! Is it a laptop, or desk top?
Can't WAIT for the pictures, hurry hurry!

Good post about the doggy, btw.

7:32 AM PDT  
Blogger NursePam said...

Pampics? Is that anything like Pampers? *giggle* If I can get a pic of me that looks more like Kate Hepburn and less like an aging Phyllis Diller you might see one. Otherwise it will be the dog and my feet ;^) Good job on picking the dog Nelle. If it's going to be part of the family, all of you deserve the best chance for a successful placement.

I do believe the blood panel includes thyroid levels Ginny. Thanks for the thought. If they didn't include it, I'll make sure it's done the next time I take her in.

Thanks Syd, Sangro, and Kmae! I'm really excited about the computer. It is a desktop. I had been looking for a few days and yesterday I saw a 33% off sale so I got the guts of it with the OS and monitor for $699. I upgraded to a 20 in. flat screen, upgraded the sound system, added MS Works, a printer, and a few other toys and still came away just over $1,500 including s&h and taxes.

I also got the Dell credit. If I pay it off in under 18 months there's no interest. Bad news? My line of credit is for $3,000 and I have been salivating at the thought of a new television for my living room. It can wait until the car is paid off in November though.

Just be forewarned that I may be offline for awhile. I always insist on setting these things up myself with many hours or swearing, frustration, and tears in my beer ;^)

10:23 AM PDT  
Blogger Lee said...

nice post about purebred issues m'am...I agree, people often don't understand a breed before making a commitment or understanding the issues that may come with the cuteness...J swears she wants a puppy next go round, but I just have such a soft spot for adult adoptees in the siuation your Jax was in...enjoy the new Dell, can't wait to see pampics too ;)

12:23 PM PDT  
Blogger Vanda said...

Great entry Pam. I have to admit I always get a rescue dog. I have a huge soft spot for the lame, badly treated and the ones no one else wants. That's what Spike was and he's a darling, loving and protective dog.

Ohhhh you have a Dell!!! I love my laptop but wish I had room for a desktop. I'd go with Dell anytime.

5:54 AM PDT  
Blogger NursePam said...

Thank you Lee & Vanda! Animal rescue is an issue that is near and dear to my heart. Long story but we saw a different vet yesterday (Jaz ran a temp) and she said "to be honest, I tell people not to have pets period, especially when trying to raise a family. Most just don't understand the huge time commitment and expense that comes with most pets".

I recommend adult animal adoptions to everyone who asks (and some who don't). Older animals are especially ideal for seniors.

I ran into a little old lady in the waiting room who fosters for the humane society. We both agreed "Oh hell, who needs new carpet, new furniture, and expensive trips. We'd rather have critters." ;^)

I'm very excited about the computer. Our corp just got Dells for everyone about 6 or 8 months ago and they are a dream. I love my work 'puter.

8:11 AM PDT  

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