All posts for the month August, 2013

Lucky Chinese Dog

Published August 30, 2013 by lowercase v

I was going through my old pictures and I came across this picture that I took in Hangzhou, China. It is slightly out of focus, but the photo wasn’t posed and I had to take it on the fly.


©2008 lowercase v

To spay or not to spay

Published August 24, 2013 by lowercase v

I just read a post on a another blog about spaying. As I was busy replying, I decided to elaborate on my response a bit and do this post:


I did a course on canine reproductive health a while ago. (It was a Coursera course from the University of Minnesota). I think this is a very important issue but also a extremely sensitive and volatile subject.

Just like parents need to give their human children “The Talk” and tell them to practice either abstinence or safe-sex, dog-parents also have to care about their fur-children’s reproductive future.

Gabi is spayed. The story I got regarding her sterilization is this:
After she made champion show dog, she was bred. She was attacked by another dog (this is how she got her scar) and and lost her puppies in the trauma. She was also spayed at that time. It’s a very sad story and explains why she is often so cautious of other dogs.

Yes, there are risks in sterilization (some of them are extremely low risk anyway). Mostly the biggest risk is weight gain, but this doesn’t happen in every dog. You should ensure your dog gets exercise and feed a healthy diet. And although you would not be making decision whether or not to spay your human daughter, the talk won’t work on your dog. She might have babies before she turns one… and it won’t be just one baby either.

Some risks of spay/ neuter:
* Slightly bigger chance for prostate cancer in males (rare)
* Slightly bigger bone cancer and cancer of the blood vessels (rare)
* Urinary incontinence (females)
* Weight gain

Benefits of spay/ neuter:
* Completely eliminates BPH (enlarged prostate, common in intact males)
* Eliminates testicular cancer in males
* Eliminates testosterone driven aggression
* Eliminates ovarian, uterine,
* Decrease mammary cancer risk
* Decreases Pyometra risk (in females)

Sterilization is a personal choice, but I personally believe it’s a right choice for a responsible dog owner to make.  (Unless you’re a professional breeder but then you should breed responsibly) 

With female dogs especially it’s better to spay if she’s not a breeding dog. With male does it’s also good to neuter (even though there seems to be more risk). Yes, even if he is an only dog or if you only have male dogs. You can’t be sure he won’t get out the yard when there is a bitch in heat in the neighbourhood. Like wise with your female, you can’t be sure they neighbour’s dog won’t hop the fence. Lulu, from next door gets in our yard all the time. She’s a girl and Gabi isn’t even in heat…. Imagine is he was a male and Gabi was in heat!

Shelters take in homeless dogs on a regular basis and are severely affected by canine overpopulation and the uncontrolled breeding of dogs. In most cases they have to euthanize un-adoptable dogs. Shelters therefor sterilize dogs (purebred and mix-breed alike) upon adoption to avoid further unwanted pregnancies. Unwanted dogs leads to further overpopulation, which leads to even more euthanasia (dogs been killed).

Spring is near!

Published August 23, 2013 by lowercase v

spruitshadow b

It’s almost spring time. I’ve all ready seen a few mosquitoes. Eeek! I don’t like killing creatures, but I have absolutely no trouble swatting mozzies. This probably means tick and flea season is near.

Gabi had a bath yesterday. Of course, she hated it.(She was rewarded with a nice treat though) Despite a slightly chilly it was a pleasant sunny day.

She had a nice run in the park today. However, I had to carry her when we got there (the wind) and also after she chased some birds (exhausted, tongues hanging out)

I occasionally brush her teeth with baking soda (mixed with a little coconut oil) and they look MUCH better than a few months ago. Try it! (but gently)… I still wish I could afford to have her teeth cleaned properly by the vet though. Not at this moment.

The holes in the fence has been fixed, but Lulu (the neighbour’s jrt) keeps coming over. I’ve actually seen her climb the fence. Arghh!


Published August 16, 2013 by lowercase v

I saw this on ihasahotdog.
“My sister’s dog is blind and I guess today she made this ridiculous dog space suit thing to keep him from running into things.”

blind doggy
What a creative way to keep your dog safe! Though I have to wonder if it’s maybe a bit like wearing the cone of shame, it might be a little restrictive.

Not such good fences…

Published August 7, 2013 by lowercase v

Lullu in yard lulu

She’s done it again! Three days in a row now,  Gabi’s friend next-door, Lulu the JRT, has popped in for a visit.

I noticed on Monday  that Lulu was running about outside. Luckily the  (neighbour) woman was there and she heard the commotion.  She called for Lulu and I wanted to help her over the fence, but she wouldn’t let me pick her up. The woman climbed over the wall and took Lulu home. I showed her a huge hole in the plastic fencing which Lulu (and I guess Misty) had bitten through.  She said her husband would check out the fence that evening.

hole in fence Hello neighbour

Tuesday she was back and also managed to get back home by herself.   While she was in the yard, Misty the Weimeraner who was still a puppy a few months ago at Lulu’s visit was crying  and barking at the fence.  I’m not sure if she was crying for Lulu to come home or wanted to come and join them at our place. I also noticed that she was tearing at the plastic fencing with her teeth and eating it!

I was watering my herbs and the dogs were running through the dirt and Gabi was making paw prints in the house.  I closed Gabi off in the house.  The man was then out in the yard. So I talked with him. I asked about the microchips (because the dogs don’t have tags)  and he assured me the dogs were chipped. I also told him about Misty eating the plastic, in case she got sick.  He put some wood fencing in front of  the wall.  I thought this would fix the problem.

IMG_0072 misty

Wednesday (today) Lulu was back. She also got back home on her own. I don’t know where she got through. My mom saw her go through some where at their back of the yard. I checked out the fence but I don’t know where it is.  I hope she doesn’t teach Gabi to go through the fence with her!

I haven’t seen either of the neighbours since yesterday, but there is  obviously still a problem. Yes it’s our fence too, but it’s  not Gabi causing the problems. The neighbours has 3 dogs, while the rules only allow for 2.  I’m not sure if they don’t know this  (their landlord might not have told them) or if they just don’t care.