TOKYO - Pity the poor office worker. It's midafternoon, and taking a break probably means sneaking off to the vending machine for a soda, or at best slipping out for coffee. But what about those who crave cuddle time with a cat? Or maybe a snuggle session with a bunny? A cappuccino in the company of an owl might be a hoot. Or perhaps a green tea alongside a goat....
When last we “spoke,” our subject was Annie, a 9-year-old yellow Labrador retriever who had presented to our veterinary hospital for an annual physical examination. She was her normal happy self, always wanting to please as we went through the examination.
Annie walked into the exam room just like she had been doing for the past nine years, rear end wagging back and forth with her tail keeping time. She had a big smile on her face and lowered her head as always to make it as easy as possible to pet her head. It was time for her annual physical examination.
Paula has noticed swelling on her bunny Timothy's left lower jaw. It does not seem to have changed his attitude about life, though recently he acted like the area was painful when touched by Paula. This increased Paula's concern as a result.
The great thing about a dog park is that anyone can go there with their dog – that’s also the worst thing about a dog park. I’ve been to many, and it’s troubling to see the inappropriate behavior of both dogs and humans on any given day.
Linda has written in with a question about her 5-month-old boxer puppy, “Alexa.” It seems she’s quite a jumper, and Linda has tried everything from scolding to spraying water to try to stop it, with little success. I’ve addressed this behavior in this column in the past, but it’s been awhile, so I’m happy to go over it again.
I suspect for many of you that this time of year is a bit hectic. I know for me that is indeed the case. It seems there is so much to do during the holidays: decorating the house (I’m still not done), shopping (I need to start!), planning for gatherings, cooking, and the list goes on.
There are times when I receive a letter from one of my readers and from their description, I become absolutely sure I know what is wrong with their companion. Of course this may be quite delusional on my part but since I seldom find out the outcome of the case, I will choose to continue in that vein. Today’s letter is a prime example.
Mac is a 10-year-old Scottish terrier who has lived with Joe and Paula for almost all of his life. He has always been a healthy dog. Joe and Paula give Mac a monthly tablet for prevention of heartworm disease and intestinal parasites as well as a monthly topical flea preventative. He is fed a good diet and is not allowed to eat from their table. Recently, Mac has displayed some changes in his body and his habits and Joe and Paula are concerned.
Several times in the past I have received letters concerning health problems in beloved companions, problems that should have been addressed well before I read these letters. Today is just such a case.
There are few holidays that offer so many dog training opportunities as Halloween. I currently have a 15-month-old dachshund, Curtis, who needs to catch up with my other dog’s education concerning house rules. Halloween, with lots of foot traffic and ringing of the doorbell, presents the perfect training scenario.
Rabbits are becoming increasingly popular as companion pets and deservedly so. These fabulous creatures are highly intelligent, interactive animals that can live indoors and out and are quite adept at teaching their caretakers how they want to live their lives. That last remark is a bit “tongue-in-cheek,” however there is some truth in those words, as rabbits are very capable of understanding their people.