Sunday, March 29, 2009

To live in a dream world

Why, is the world full of people who just don’t get it? People who walk around without a care in the world and with little understanding of how the world works? We call them many things. We may even make fun of them. However, where does accountability come into play?

Of course my concern is domesticated pets.

I understand that life happens and circumstances shift. What I don’t understand is complete ignorance.

I have been dealing with a lady who gave up her pet. She started off working with our rescue and going through our Assisted Placement (AP) Program. Then she up and changed her mind and took the pet to the local city shelter (which has a high volume and low adoption rates).

Our AP program provides an alternative to shelter surrender. We list the pet on our website (Link to this specific dogs bio), which is part of a national searchable database for people looking to adopt a new best friend. We screen adoption applications and when the right home is found we connect the parties up. Or we handle the adoption for them. The goal is to help lessen the stress of change on the pet. The other goal is to keep the pet healthier because it never enters the shelter system in the first place. We do not charge for this service, either.

Anyway this morning the Lady finally responds back to me and tells me everything is fine, she no longer needs help, and the dog is safe at the local shelter. She further goes on to say that the staff told her they would find her dog a new home. Right and pigs fly! Ok. I’ll calm down.

I realize what they probably told her was “We are going to do all we can to find Fluffy a new home.” I seriously doubt they gave her a guarantee. Heck I could call the folks I know there and ask them point blank and they would tell me honestly that they can’t make that claim.
What kills me with this whole situation is how she has just walked away. Her dog may pay for the situation with his life but she’s off the hook and clueless.

Ugh!

Me being me, doesn’t feel being clueless is an option so I send her an e-mail and tell her that we did have a family contact us that wants to adopt her dog. We have sent the shelter’s information to them and our only hope is they adopt him in time. She writes back, “ What do you mean in time?”

I could scream!

What the hell do you think I mean. So I calmly refrain from screaming and send her back an e-mail explaining what a city shelter has to do to keep the doors open. She is literally shocked and appalled.

Well, reality sucks sometimes and living in a dream world is no excuse when others pay for your ignorance with their lives.

Harsh. Yea, it is but its how I feel.

I know this woman doesn’t represent the world and that I can’t “fix” every situation. I also know that there are worse things that can happen to a pet then dropping them at the shelter. I am also not naive and realize the statistics. I also don’t despise euthanasia. I guess my whole point is the system seems very broken to me and I think it needs changed.

It’s reactive; not proactive.

Maybe it just comes down to education and advocacy.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Spring time is here!

The wind sure is gusting tonight. We are under a sever thunderstorm watch which is kind a cool if you live in KS and you find storm season remotely fun. What can I say we like to watch the clouds out in these parts and boy do they come rolling in. At the ranch I can see for at least five miles I would say if not more, so you can watch a wall cloud build just like out at sea. It is something.

It occurred to me that I haven’t posted in forever. I sure think about it. I even write blogs in my head but some how they never make it to paper. Then before I know it the day has slipped past me once again.

Now it’s late and I am tired but I figured I would make myself sit down. I don’t have an earth shattering post to make but I do have something very cool snoozing in my arms balanced on my desk all wrapped up in a blanket.

A goat!

Yep, a baby goat. For real. I just adore her and sure maybe some will say I need a kid but heck I got one now! Ha, pun intended. My niece named her Melody. She is a triplet and her brother will move to the ranch when he is older to join her. His name is Sebastian, also named by my niece. Melody is being bottle feed because she is so small and short that she can’t nurse. She also needs to stay extra worm and get more TLC. Hence Aunt Kristi now has a goat. Go figure! Melody’s a fighter though and doing great at our house.

Pepe has taken to her even though he can be jealous at times. For the most part he’s protective of her. My other GSDs are fascinated by her and 007 is getting pretty skilled at bottle feeding. He has fallen for her 100%.

I’ll post some pics soon. She is oh so adorable and she is now awake. I think she wants another bottle. She is two weeks old give or take and has some of her bottom teeth already. Ouch!

Friday, March 6, 2009

Deep thoughts for Friday…

You know you need a new job when the conversation at work includes the latest video game discussion. This would be my stable big brother job that allows me to interact with zero animals accept the two legged type. What was the latest and greatest game being discussed… FLOCK, which involves farm animals, herding, and aliens. I mean seriously? I just don't get it.

Update on Pepe. He’s home, yea! He’s doing rather good considering his entire back end has been redone. Two surgeries and both successful so far as I keep the surgical area clean. Which one would think would be easy but he’s on a stool softener and well let’s just say we have gone past soft. It’s freaking great. He’s not dehydrating so far and I held off on his softener meds for today so hopefully that will resolve itself. Tomorrow he’ll spend the day with me at the clinic so if we need to play with his meds I’ll have Dr. L to help me out.

The surgical resident should be e-mailing me photos from his first surgery soon. When I get them I'll post and give my humble attempt at explaining everything that went on for both surgeries. I am personally impressed by both of them and can't pick which one is more amazing.

Pepe is eating really well and drinking great. He's on an opiate based pain med so he's pretty high most of them time. I refer to it as water down morphine. When he comes down from his high he's wired and starving. It is wonderful to have that sparkle back in his eye but I could do with out the munchie druggy behavior. As he's on restriction for movement too. No running, jumping, you know typical dog stuff. He is also rather clingy, which one would think would be just fine but I am feeling a bit smothered. I also feel guilty for saying that.

I can't imagine what this experience would be like with a sick child? One that you have had to turn over to the Doctors and prey will be fine. It has been tough but I can't even take myself there. I have a few friends whose children have had to undergo a few surgeries and they always talk about that moment when you let go as they role them into surgery. Yea, that moment has been on my mind. Medicine is amazing and frightening.

This afternoon I enjoy the amazing weather at the ranch with all my dogs. It hit 80 yesterday and today it was a little cooler with a nice breeze. Our current outside project is clearing up a fence area that serves no purpose. Very overgrown and just hodge podged together. Why do people build crappy fences? That has been on my mind too. I've found refrigerator grates. You know the racks that you set the food on in older fridges. Why would that be a fence piece? Recycle, reuse I guess.

I’ll post photos later of the transformation. Hope you had an enjoying Friday too!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Yea!!!

Ok so Pepe isn't home yet but his second surgery was a huge success. He's spending the night in ICU, which means I will get great sleep because I know some one else is check his vitals every hour and adjusting his fluids/meds if need be. I'd say that is worth the cost because when he does come home it'll be our turn. I'd say my turn but truth be known I'm not super woman and I need 007 to help me on this one.

Thankfully 007 has spent time at the clinic working for Dr. L too. Dr. L and our RVT trained him as a vet assistant. We needed reliable help at the time so I convinced him the knowledge would come in handy so he took the job. He actually really likes being in my world and its neat to get to work with him. He gets a great deal of joy out of telling our clients, nope I'm not a pre-vet student I'm an engineering student. It leaves them rather perplexed. He is also a big hit with our more senior female clientele as he throws a bag of food over his shoulder and carries it to their cars. We received a great deal of Christmas goodies thanks to him this year.

Anyway, his unusual skill set with sure help when Pepe is back home. Hopefully by Thursday. Maybe if I'm lucky tomorrow. I had a good chat with his 4th year Vet Student assigned to his case this time. I'll call her J and I would say she is going to make a wonderful Vet from my brief exposure to her. She is just really good at explaining things. She also understands Pepe's mindset, which I would say after working in a small animal clinic is 75% of most small dogs. There is that rare 25% of nice well mannered small guys but they don't seem to need care as much. Even Dr. L's small dog is a spit fire too. Her name is Ellie and it fits. She is adorable but I so wouldn't cross her.

So I am happy even though I know we have about a month of restriction for Pepe ahead of us. Still I am relieved. Hopefully he will continue to improve and be home soon. He has received quiet the cocktail of drugs even an epidural! Yea, I will post more details about his surgery soon. I've learned quiet a bit. Poor guy has really had a heck of a week and basically had his back end re-done. Thank goodness they can do things like this and what is crazy is its some what standard.

Monday, March 2, 2009

One down and one more to go...

I dropped Pepe off at the vet school this afternoon and during introduction with the new doctor he tried to bite him. Yep, made me oh so proud.

We went over how he did all weekend and my thoughts on how to get him over some of his "issues" so they could handle him easier. I explained how he didn't want to be picked up and this Doc I think got it. Pepe has a new 4th year Vet Student assigned to him and she seemed more up to speed on how to go slow with him and just work around not picking him up.

I used 1/2 of a cat carrier (the bottom part) as an elevator system all weekend for him. With the door and top off all he has to do is walk in and then I can raise him up to the couch, bed or carry him downstairs or outside to potty. His Doc got a kick out of this but my guess is after he gets bit a few times he'll consider the idea less silly!

So I am a nervous wreck as the Doc went over every possible thing that could go wrong. I mean who wants to hear about loss of sphincter control? I mean WTF! I assume since I am bringing him to the best place in the state because I am told they'll do a great job and oh by the way that is what I am paying for. I tried to stress that point in a polite and friendly way but again wtf.

Guess now I wait and I prey that this next surgery goes as well and maybe just a wee bit better than the last one!

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Cranky and Greatful... what a combo

So what am I cranky about? Honestly I don't know but 007 has really been bugging me today. Nope he hasn't done a darn thing just been himself and well he's getting on my nervous. I think it has to-do with the fact that he's getting close to his future finally starting and I'm getting jealous. Yea, it's the truth. So why is that? I am beyond proud of all the hard work he's put in to finishing school in his 30's and in an engineering program none the less. Plus it's not like I won't benefit from his new future. So what the hell is my problem? It's any one's guess. Maybe I just need my bathtub installed and all of this will melt away. He's getting closer!

Now what am I grateful for well Pepe of course. The Vet School decided to discharge him Saturday am at 9am why you may ask? Because my little boy is a PIA! Yep, he had enough and was officially nicknamed Hannibal by his attending surgeon. I was also told by the 4th year assigned to his case that he was very aggressive and had bitten her. I wanted to smack her. Seriously I really did. He's all of 5lbs and has very few teeth left. Also from his not so wonderful past.

Keep in mind I was once again jealous of her b/c she's in vet school and about to graduate in May and for the life of me I get annoyed when people say they can't handle a 5lb toothless or near toothless dog. Good luck in the real world is what my response should be but nope that's not what I say. I apologize and tell her I am sorry my dog's angry. He's only had half of the hospital stick their gloved finger up his rear and he's got a surgical scar half way down his gut. Not to mention how bruised he is. One specific part of him is very bruised. Why? Because he had a catheter I am guessing. So for the life of me I can't figure out why he would be so angry. I mean he should be thrilled to have everyone groping him. Right?

So they sent him home with me and let me tell ya it's taken me all weekend to get him ok with letting me look at his incision. He's on great meds and has official gone #2 so we are very hopeful that things are looking good for him. However, he has to go back to the Vet School and have yet another surgery on Tuesday. I have to drop him off by noon on Monday. At which time I think he will have a royal meltdown b/c I am once again turning him over to all the people who poke at him. But I am grateful beyond words that they have the facilities, skill set, and the price is at least in the ball park of affordable. Ok maybe its not but at least it's not really out there.

So there you have it a cranky me and it's Sunday my first day off in forever! Ugh! Oh yea and it snowed again. We had 70 degrees a few days ago and then snow! What a crazy winter.