Tuesday, June 28, 2011


As much of an animal lover as I am, I prefer fur bearing creatures. I wouldn't do well handling reptiles. One of the kids who lived with us for awhile had a toad named Fiona, and while I didn't mind handling her, the few times I had to go get her some live crickets gave me the shivers.
Sunday morning I go into the kitchen to find hubs scooping up what we thought was a 5 inch snake. Upon closer (but not too close) inspection we discover it's the tail of a very large lizard. He mentioned Hellcat having been there a few minutes before, so I went off to search. I find Hellcat in the living room with the body of this thing, which is very much alive. So back with the broom and dustpan again to dump the other half, which was hissing at us. It was an alligator lizard, they are very quick, aggressive, and they bite. I would not have been happy waking up next to one of these.

Speaking of ewww, we had two puppies with Parvo this week. Siblings. These were older puppies, never had been vaccinated. Both died, after much terrible suffering. The most common excuse I hear for people not vaccinating is that "my dog doesn't go anywhere". Neither did these puppies, but they still got one of the most virulent strains of Parvo.  Parvovirus can remain on surfaces or in grass or dirt for up to 2 years. We have kennels that we only put dogs with Parvo in, despite our fanatic bleaching and disinfecting. This is why I don't take unvaccinated dogs to dog friendly places, and why my work shoes are only worn at work.
No matter what your view on vaccinating (and there are some anti-vaccine advocates I do agree with), when you can prevent needless suffering and death with a proven inexpensive vaccine, why aren't more people doing it? These vaccines are readily available, in most states you can purchase them over the counter or from a catalog and do them yourself. In the case of something like Parvo, there really isn't a reason not to.

Friday, June 24, 2011

No Good Deed Goes Unpunished

I got a call from a woman today who had been referred by the charity (who shall remain anonymous) that we work with.  She has a giant breed dog (140 lbs) that needs to be neutered. Since this would be a charity surgery, I had to give her the prices separately, with the cost of the surgery, antibiotics, etc. Not all hospitals have a policy of giving antibiotics after surgery, but ours does, no exceptions. She started arguing with me, stating that she could get antibiotics free from her vet, he just couldn't do the surgery. Rather than having a battle of wits with an unarmed person, I told her she may be happier finding a vet that didn't require antibiotics, and hung up.
Newsflash is that many vets won't alter a full grown giant breed dog, especially not at the price I quoted her. Surgery on full grown giant breeds is arduous backbreaking work.
Speaking of charities, I had a chat with one of the women who works at the one we work with. This charity has been around for more than 30 years, and they've helped many financially strapped people get medical help for their pets. Like most charities in a recession, they are short on donations and long on people with their hand out, so they are forced to only help people that are truly needy. Which means a more arduous screening of the people who call them. Sometimes they only donate $5, and they no longer are able to cover the full cost of surgeries.
She told me that at least once a day the phone call ends with the caller screaming "fuck you!" and slamming the phone down. The staff actually keeps count of the number of "fuck you"s they get. They've had their lives threatened, and bomb threats. They've had to take their sign down, only work daylight hours, and be escorted to the parking lot every day after work.
They are not fugitives, they are people who work tirelessly to help animals and this is charity, for crap's sake! Your pet needs help, friends and family won't, and a perfect stranger helps find a place that is low cost, and even pitches in some money (and even if it is only $5, it's $5 that you don't have to come up with) and your only response is "fuck you"?! Who died and left you so entitled?

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Random Rant

In an earlier post I mentioned the dangers of housework when I broke the stoneware to my crock pot. So I do a search online and find a company who carries replacements. I place the order, which is to be shipped by UPS. It hits the doorstep on late Friday of Memorial Day weekend. The package rattles suspiciously. It is packaged poorly in a huge box with a bit of bubble wrap. It's in way more pieces than the one I broke. I fire off a less than pleasant email to the company, who agrees to send me a new one. Same thing with the second one. I demanded a refund. It'll be much less trouble just to go buy a new crock pot.
I won't name the company here, unless I don't get my card credited. But seriously, who in the hell is ignorant enough to package something that is breakable in a bit of bubble wrap in a too large box?! And not even mark it fragile, when it's surely going to be punted by the UPS people?  I've had nail polish delivered that was wrapped better than this was. This is the first time I've ordered something that started out in a box that I could mail back in an envelope.
And what is it with the UPS drivers being so snarky and rude? I miss Ron, who was the regular UPS driver for years. He could be a nosy pain in the ass, but at least he'd ring the bell, and if a box was dented, he'd let me know about it. Seriously, for what they're charging for shipping, the UPS guys could be a little more pleasant. Quit punting the stuff I paid for onto my porch. If you hate your job that much, trade in that shit brown uniform for something that works for you. Like a gorilla suit.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Fun With Phone Solicitors

"Animal Hospital"
"Yes, this is dumbass solicitor calling, may I speak to the Office Manager?"
"She's not in right now. Call back after 3" (I'm gone by then)
"Can I get her name?"
" Sure, ask for Ida Know."


"Animal Hospital"
"Yes, this is dumbass from Merchant Services. May I speak to Boss Man?"
"Well, I can save him some money if he switches to our service."
"He still won't talk to you."
"He doesn't want to save money?"
"He thinks your company sucks. He'll tell you to kiss his ass. Would you like him to tell you that or are you satisfied with me conveying the message?"

This company calls an average of 6 times a day, and leaves at least 2 messages after hours. No matter what I say to them.

"Animal Hospital"
"Yes, this is dipshit calling from some stupid company. We specialize in getting the negative ratings off the internet. Are you aware of the negative things being written about you?"
"Well, wouldn't you like to have those erased and only positive ratings showing?"
"Isn't that illegal?"
"No, it's perfectly legal. We can erase those negative ratings and comments!"
"Why? They're all true."
"We can still erase them, and get only positive ratings."
"I can erase them too."
"How can you do that?"
"I wrote them."

Long pause, followed by a click.


"Animal Hospital"
"How ya doing today?!"
"So far I've been snapped at, scratched, peed on, shit on, dropped a tumor on my shoe, stepped on testicles and got the phone receiver bloody in my rush to answer the phone and listen to some effing solicitor. But the day is young."
"This sounds like a bad time to call, I'll call back."
"After 6 would be perfect."

we close at 6

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Favorite Things-Pet Edition

Rather than save them all up for the holiday season, I'd thought I'd discuss some things I personally like. If you'd like to ask my opinion on something, please feel free to ask. I've got plenty of opinions. Everything reviewed here was purchased with my own money and I'm not compensated for my opinions on them.

Greenies Pill Pockets:

I'm not a fan of the Greenies dog chews at all, but it's about time someone came up with something easier for those of us who need to give medicine to our pets on a regular basis. They make them for cats, but my cats won't touch them. My old dog who takes a pill daily, loves them.

Natural Balance Dog Treat Rolls

I love these. They can be cut into pea sized bites for dog training.  Most dog trainers will tell you to use something of a "higher food value" for higher stress/distraction situations and these fit the bill nicely. I don't take the dog out in public without them.

Easy Walk Harness:

Recommended to me by a dog trainer, this harness has its leash rings in the front. It's wonderful for large dogs that pull. They can still pull in this harness, but not with the strength that they use with a neck collar, and you're not yanked off of your feet. Great for training as you have control without the dog gagging. My dog doesn't leave home without it.

Epona Shed Flower:

I've been using these on my horses for awhile, and I've given many as gifts to horse friends. No hand fatigue with these, and you can use them to knock mud off sensitive spots like legs, where a shedding blade or metal currycomb shouldn't go. I've recently started using these on my old dog with Cushing's as she's shedding hair like crazy, and even the cats tolerate it.

Goodlife Cat Treats:

I've never used this brand of food, but I recently got some samples of these treats. They are like crack to the Catfather. So I'm recommending them at his insistence.

Mane and Tail Spray White:

As much as I love white markings on animals, I hate trying to keep them looking white. Spray on, scrub in and rinse. It's one of the best whitening products I've found that's easy to use at a reasonable price.

So here it is. See anything you like? What have you tried that you love or hate?

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Ch Ch Changes

In my little world, there are a ton of major things going on at once. Some good, some bad, but a definite shift in the everyday routine to be sure. So my little blog has been getting neglected.
The change I'll address in this post is that we are definitely heading toward warmer weather. I know some of my blogging buds saw snow over the Memorial Day weekend, but still we are heading toward some definition of summer, and that means a mass influx of bugs, especially if you're in an area that had a particularly wet winter and spring without much frost. Yes, it's flea/tick/mosquito/fly season  for sure!
After a frantic phone call from a friend on Friday night, who came home from work to find her horse warm and weak on the back end (my first thought is West Nile, the vet she finally found to come out over the holiday thinks so too, blood work not back yet), I made a point to give my horses their West Nile Vaccines.
While following recommended vaccine practice is a good thing, it is a bad idea to depend on vaccines alone for disease prevention. Prevention should always be proactive.
For horses, a fly mask is a necessity in some areas. Some people use fly sheets. It depends on your area and preference, but some effort must be made to give them some relief from bugs, whether it be a fan, sheet, or fly sprays. Manure should be removed and managed to keep the fly breeding down.
Standing pools of water are mosquito breeding grounds. Some horse owners with very large ponds or stock tanks that can't be drained and scrubbed get those mosquito larvae eating fish to take care of the problem. I let my horses drink down the water in their barrels and once a week they are dumped and scrubbed out then refilled. I do the same with the dog's water buckets. If you have water barrels that can't be dumped, or standing pools of water on your property, add some vinegar or a small amount of cooking oil to it. The mosquitoes can't breed in it, and it won't hurt if a pet drinks from it.
Every summer season we see at least one dog or cat that is so flea infested it is anemic from the bloodsucking critters. It is especially important during the season to check them on a regular basis. If you find them on one, it's important to treat every pet you have, and also the premises.  Spray the yard with a spray designed for fleas and follow the directions. Treating the house should include not only the pet's bedding, but everything carpeted and upholstery as well. Vacuum the treated areas daily for a week. Important: After an indoor flea treatment, you must replace the vacuum bag, or in the case of a bagless vacuum, dump the cup immediately. You're sucking up flea eggs, which can hatch in the bag or cup, and they will be redeposited through the exhaust if you don't get rid of them the first time. Then you'll have to do it all over.
I'm not going to recommend certain products, other than to recommend staying far far away from Hartz.  It is very important to read labels and dose correctly when choosing products. Keeping the insect population as far away as possible from our pets is part of our responsibility as pet owners. I'm hoping your summer is fun and bug free!