Monday, October 18, 2010

Good As New

In fact, Greta Grub seems to thrive on porcupine encounters.  We usually give her a chunk of meat, gristle, or fat after we pull her quills, and days later, she still waits expectantly for more treats.  Her boxer genes really shine at this time: she spends quite a bit of energy on a vertical bounce to her jaunty gait. 
We just watched the animated film Monsters vs. Aliens over the weekend.  In case you are unfamiliar with Greta's general personality, you can refer to Bob in that movie.  Bob the Monster and Greta Grub are about the same...good natured and brainless.  :)

Poor Shachah didn't fare as well.  He had fewer quills, but a few were embedded very deeply.  He actually let Clancy pull out most of them.  He didn't even need to be held.  He would sit still until it hurt too much and then he would walk away.  When he was ready he would come back up to Clancy so more could be pulled.  Amazing!  But he had several quills deep in his front paws and he would not let Clancy touch them.

Shachah loaded quite easily in the car with Clancy's help  The vet sedated him and removed the final quills.  When I came to pick him up, Shachah headed straight for the car and didn't hesitate to get in.  Poor boy wanted to go home.  He is limping badly on both front paws.  But in the end, the whole experience might have created just a little bit more trust between dog and family.  


Michelle said...

I wondered if that big white dog might let you guys help him; most animals know when you are trying to help. Sure hope they got all the quill pieces out of his paws....

Anonymous said...

ouch! that sounds pretty nasty. But I think that probably you're right about it being a bonding experience. Poor pups.

Becky Utecht said...

Oh, I wondered if Shachah had experienced porcupines in his previous home up in Finlayson, MN. I was hoping he was experienced enough to steer clear of them. But apparently not. So now he's gotten his trip to the vet after all! I'm glad it turned out okay, I've read that you have to be careful with anesthesia and the big dogs with the low metabolism. I'm glad it all worked out, and that the trust issue is even more established.

Sabrina Wille Erickson said...

I didn't know about the anesthesia issue with big dogs, Becky. But the vet did say that they didn't put him completely under, just sedated him enough to get him to lie down. So he must have known about that. I really like this new vet that is at our old office. He called this morning to talk about Shachah because he was with another patient when I picked Sh. up.

Two really cool things:
1. I had a credit at the vets for $162 from the medications they bought back when Sally died. Shachah's visit yesterday cost $159Had he climbed in the car last Friday for an exam, much of that would have been depleted. So I'm very grateful that he balked at last week's trip.
2. At my request, the vet took the opportunity to examine Shachah's hips/back legs. He did not find any evidence of wasting or build up of compensating muscles found with hip dysplasia. But he thinks the acl in one or both of his knees may be torn or damaged due to heavy running/work in his growing stage. Which is causing his arthritis. But he wants us to just use asprin on the days he needs it and start him on glucosamine (sp). If, later in life, he starts to favor one leg more then the other, we could do surgery. But that might not ever be necessary either. Anyway, it just feels good to have a long term plan for him and his stiffness. He also tested negative for Lyme's, erlichiosis (sp) and heartworm. So good news there too. I told them he was on heartworm preventative, but they tested anyway as it is a 4 in 1 test.
All's well that ends well! :)

Becky Utecht said...

I'm glad you've got a good new vet. We had him tested for Lyme, erlichiosis, and heartworm in April, that's when he tested positive for anaplasmosis and we treated him for that, 10 pills a day for 28 days. We gave him vaccinations for Lyme, distemper and rabies then too. I'm pretty sure his previous owners tried glucosamine in the past. Not sure if it helped or not, but when we got him they just said to use the aspirin if he got real stiff and make sure he had a sheltered area with bedding during the cold weather. Like them, we let him come inside to warm up for a few hours last winter on some days, but he always spent the nights outside, no matter how cold the temps were. It's very common for mature LGDs to have arthritis,I wouldn't worry about it much at all. Last year never even gave him an aspirin. And hopefully he won't go near any more porcupines!

Sabrina Wille Erickson said...

I truly hope he's learned his lesson too! :)

I knew he was current on everything...even though I have misplaced the paperwork you gave me on my messy desk. (its there somewhere) I tried to tell the vet tech those things but I suppose after a whole summer there is the chance of woodtick diseases anyway. Woodtick diseases are terribly common up here. I think its like when you go to a new doctor...they just do routine checks anyway to establish a baseline.

I think we'll give the glucosamine a try, and see if we notice a difference. Clancy has had surgery on his acl's too and he wants to give it a try. He and Shachah can compare notes! haha.