Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Skelly! There are starving char-pei's in China!

This silly hound has a new hobby as of late. I'm not sure why, but he often gets the insatiable urge to dump his bowl of food all over the ground.

I know what you're thinking... "Skelly would never do such a thing!"

I present to you, exhibit no. 1...

Looking mighty guilty, Skeletor! That would be what's left of his breakfast in the foreground and the remains of his lunch in the background.

You can't help but chuckle at the irony... In February when he appeared on the scene, this walking skeleton was down to about 36lbs. Today, he's almost 60lbs and such a spoiled brat, that he decorates the porch with Purina One. (for those who don't know, Purina One is NOT the cheap stuff :)

Oh... just in case nobody gets the title of this post.
I can remember hearing this over and over when I was a kid any time me or my brothers were being picky eaters...

"Finish your dinner you little ingrate! There are starving children in China!"

Monday, May 24, 2010

Another vet visit this week

Thanks to my mom for the guest post. I told her how busy I was and she wrote me a guest post to help keep everybody from falling asleep at their keyboards.

So this week is another visit to the vet for Skelly. I'm happy to announce that he has been doing quite well! (all things considered)

He's finally starting to eat plain old boring dry food. We had him well spoiled during the rapid weight gain phase! He's been very adamant about tearing things to shreds. He's outgrowing some of the smaller toys and moving on to bigger better items to destroy.

I think his destructive power is a measure of his overall health and vigor. So while my first inclination when he does something like ingest half of both my racquetball gloves is to get angry, I can't help but smile and be grateful for his well-being.

Skelly has gotten pretty good with his basic dog tricks. Sit, stay, and paw. He is still working on the others... heel, lay down, don't eat my belt, no begging, no pulling, don't eat my shoes, stay off the couch, no fellating yourself in the house, stay off my bed, no drinking out of the toilet, etc.

We're hoping for good news at the vet. I think that if his blood is looking good, we'll be done with prednizone weening and ready for his next phase of treatment.

That will likely be one of two things: Beginning the actual heartworm treatment or having him neutered.

We've made it this far without neutering, so I'm thinking the heartworm treatment will be the best thing. His being intact isn't really causing too many problems. If we get him neutered, it could push his heartworm treatment back by a month? maybe longer?

I think the longer we wait before he gets another dose of the preventative, the worse the reaction will be.

Stay tuned! We will probably take him to see Dr. Fish on Wednesday.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Guest Post: Pit Bulls - Secretly giant Chihuahuas?

Guest post by Wes’s Mom :

Once upon a time there was a woman who bought a new house. Unbeknownst to her at the time, a litter of kittens (and their teenage mother) were left behind. The 2 cutest kittens were adopted by her friends. Being an animal lover, she just fed the 2 remaining kittens. She’s been feeding them for about 8 months now. Calls them her “outside cats’ but does not claim to own them.

Yesterday, she discovered that the kitten of the “original” teen mother had 4 kittens on her front porch.

They are now about 3 or 4 weeks old.

Some how, someone who thought they were doing a “good thing” by feeding 2 stray cats…has now gone from 2 stray cats (living on her doorstep) to 6 homeless cats, now living on her door step.

In every part of the country, there ARE spay and neuter options, EVEN for strays. Usually for free!

Please check into it. Even if you can catch a feral cat in a trap, there are rescue programs that will spay and neuter them and release them (either back where they came from, or into a safer environment) with NO cost to you.

You may think you’re doing them a favor by feeding them, and of course that IS helping... But 2 kittens (or puppies ) can soon become 10 .

Spaying and neutering is essential, even (maybe more so) for strays.

Whatever town or county you live in, Google animal rescue, low cost or free spay and neuter….ect….the help IS out there.

I just watched a show about ex cons training pit bulls. This guy was training a 3 legged pit bull, and they had a rescue team go capture a pit in some huge park. Here is what I noticed.

I am afraid of dogs (well, BIG dogs… ever since that rottweiler randomly attacked me)
But I am not phobic-ly terrified of dogs, which my 72 year old friend IS.

I did not know this about her, until we just went to my sister’s house.

Come back… I’m not done yet!

Anyhow, just watching this show about the pitbulls, I remembered/realized why I am horrified of other dogs, yet NOT pitbulls.

Our pits never barked and rushed at people when they were in the house. My sisters Belgian Malinois and her min pin bark and come at you the second you come in the house.

Our pits never barked at people IN the house. If they were loose in the yard, or in the car, oh yeah, they would bark their heads off. If they were in the house…. you could break the door down and they would be lounging on the couch and not be bothered to get up. (unless you had some donuts)

Our baby, Grull, would stick her nose under peoples elbow and “grunt.” She just wanted them to pet and admire her. They often mistook her grunting for growling.

Now that I think back, how could anyone be scared of a dog that didn’t even bark at them?

I know that you all love Skeletor, and so do I!!! Even though I’ve never met him in person , he is totally my grand dog.

I hope and pray that he will become a perfectly healthy, happy boy for the rest of his life.
He is a special little soul.

Here's how we became pitbull lovers.

Please continue to spread the word about Skeletor and other dogs like him, and please spay and neuter.

P.s. 6 cats/kittens now up for adoption in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area. Let me know if you want pics.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Voting progress for the first mass produced (and affordable) Skelly T-Shirt

The big Skelly Threads vote-for-your-favorite-shirt-design extravaganza is underway. So far, we've received an extremely adequate, yet slightly overwhelming response!

Here are the forerunners...

Too sexy for my hat on charcoal is simply dominating this race with 28% of the votes. 

Skelly Threads logo on white isn't giving up without a fight, and is hanging in with 16% of the votes. 

Friend of Skeletor on white ringer is kicking names and taking asses in third place with 12% of the votes.
Tied for third place, Skelly Threads logo on pink babydoll is representing with plenty of girl power and 12% of the votes.

Cast your votes if you want to buy one at a very reasonable price! The winner will be mass produced and I'm guessing I'll be able to sell for $15 or so.

Voting is on the right side of the page, btw. 

Long Awaited Skelly Update

I know I've been slacking and you all have been very patient. It's not that there isn't a lot going on with Skelly, it's just that there's sooo much going on elsewhere, that I haven't had a chance to update.

I've been completely slammed with work... trying to market Florida Law Tools as well as First in Print's new line of products. It's costly, it's time consuming and I'm really hoping it will start paying off soon!

So what's new? (these photos are from his last vet visit by the way)

I finally bought a carpet shampooer! Best investment ever. In fact, we used it and then accidentally broke it... then took it back and exchanged it for a new one... The new one has yet to be taken out of the box and assembled! So busy!!!

Skelly has been doing well, but sometimes he worries me. It seems like he is getting more prone to coughing / dry heaving. He got a good checkup at the vet last time... but he is definitely acting sick. He does have heartworm afterall. I suppose it's normal for him to exhibit some symptoms...

He discovered the wonderful world of beds. Any time somebody leaves their bedroom door open, you can bet that Skelly will find the bed and commence chilling out on it for as long as he can get away with it.

When you walk in and catch him on your bed... he stretches out and tries to act all cute so you don't boot him off... I'll have to get you a video!

Speaking of videos... my friend had to take his camera back... so I'm going to have to wait until he lets me use it again to capture some of the stuff I've shot. I do have other footage and I really owe you nice folks a video!

Skelly is a big fan of the couch as well. Our couches are not fancy, but they are not yet destroyed either... we'd like to keep them intact for as long as possible, so we try and keep him off.

Perhaps I will look into getting him a dog bed or something so he can chill out in the living room without getting bummed out when we ban him from the couch.

Mood swings! Man, this dog is moody.. at least it appears that way. He will often times slink off into the dark hallway and just chill out by himself. Sometimes he's afraid to come inside. Sometimes he is afraid (reluctant) to go outside.

A sudden loud noise will leave him shaken for hours. Of course a dog biscuit or a walk around the neighborhood is sure to lift his spirits every time.

He's going to the vet again next week. Let's hope that his blood looks good! I think they are either going to neuter him or administer the heartworm preventative again. *gulp!*

The preventative is what caused that HUGE SCARY reaction last time. It seems logical that it wouldn't be as bad this time, but it seems like there has been plenty of time for the adult worms to reproduce... His blood may be teaming with microscopic vermin for all we know.

Anyways, they are going to administer the preventative at their office this time... so we know he'll get the best care possible.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Skelly's improved behavior: Dog training triumph or anaemic relapse?

I'm happy to announce that Skeletor has stopped having "night terrors!"

As I mentioned, he was freaking out in the night making crazy noises and breaking out of his kennel. I purchased a nice splinter-free piece of particle board and made him a sturdy new floor. After installation, he did make some ruckus for the first 2 nights, but has since slept like a baby all through the night.

My only concern is that he's been acting a little bit lethargic overall, and I'm worried that it may be due to his blood cell count :(

I really hope he has not regressed. Last vet visit was all good news and we are hoping to rid him of his heartworms so he can lead a normal life! He still gets excited about going on walks and seeing his favorite people, but to a lesser degree. I checked his gum color and it looks ok... but I certainly don't have a trained eye.

I'm hoping to take him to the vet for a checkup today or tomorrow. Cross your fingers and let's hope that he has not taken a step back!


Kim took Skelly to see Dr. Fish today. She said that he insisted that she keep giving him treats in exchange for his dog tricks until they were completely gone. (hey, at least he didn't knock down the whole container this time)

Did I mention that Kim is highly susceptible to caving to Skelly's demands?

Anyways, he has lost a little bit of weight. He's around 54.5lbs. Dr. Fish said that minor fluctuations are normal and to be expected. The incredibly GREAT news is that his blood cell counts were the same (not worse!). Dr. Fish has prescribed an even smaller dose of Prednizone (1/4 tablet every other day.) We're going to bring him back again in 2-3 weeks for another checkup.

We have been trying to ween him off of the fancy meals without letting him lose too much weight. It's quite a balancing act.

I'm not a dietitian by any means, but I am a health nerd.. so what I've been doing is jazzin up his breakfast to get his metabolism going in the morning. Adding goodies like eggs, rice, peanut butter, etc... After that, I give him a lunch and dinner that is just kibble with maybe a little bit of chicken broth or something.

It seems to be working ok, but like I said, he has lost a little weight. I only recently had the time to think up this scheme.

So, I guess it's safe to say that the new floor in his kennel is a hit! I'm sure flat wood and blankets is MUCH more comfortable than blankets draped over metal bars.

Hooray for blood cells!