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Dog Biscuits – Tried & Tested!

Ingredients

  1. 1 cup oats
  2. 1 cup flour
  3. 2 grated carrots
  4. 1 egg
  5. 1 cup chicken liver (250 grams)
  6. 1 tablespoon honey

Directions

  • Preheat over to 350°F or 175°C
  • Clean and blend the chicken livers (Quite yucky. Vegetarians…. brace yourself!)
  • Add all dry ingredients and mix well (ingredients 1 – 3 above)
  • Now add the liquids and mix well (ingredients 4 – 6 above)
  • Spread to about 3/4 cm thick on a cookie sheet or plate (I have to use two)
  • Bake for 25 minutes
  • Remove from the over & slice into squares or rectangles. Separate them
  • Back for another 10 minutes (depending on your oven you may need to bake a little longer)
  • Since this is the first time baking this batch, I’ve refrigerated most and kept a few out to see how long they hold up. 

Voila.. now your canine loves you just a little more (if that was even possible)!

Here are three happy customers.

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Tashi, RIP

Tashi was put to sleep at 2:30 pm. She was at home and we were by her side. She got to eat her favorite pepperoni pizza and we hoped that that was the most delicious send off we could give our little gourmand, the loving Tashi. Sadly, it was the best decision we could make for her. Once she got off the steroidal dosage, her rear legs had deteriorated further than before and she could barely walk.

Tashi is a little better

Saturday evening

Saturday evening

The treatment seems to be working so far. Today Tashi got up by herself after a few days, drank water, moved around in her bed by herself. AND the pain is gone from her eyes, we are seeing a glimmer of the usual loveliness in her eyes once again! My little one has a will to live and we are so, so relieved.

There seems to be some communication from her brain to her legs. She is able to move her back legs a little bit, but still unable to balance herself fully – but we are hoping that some physiotherapy is going to help this.

We left her unattended for just 20 minutes and the little one managed to bring herself into the house all by herself. So, now our biggest challenge is to make sure she doesn’t hurt herself in her enthusiasm (and pain numbed with the pain killers).

We are keeping our fingers crossed and hope that things go in the same direction over the past few days.

Today we are also cooking a batch of food. What’s in the meal for tomorrow:

  • Protein: Beef – nice chunks of meat that I’m sure T & Z are going love chewing!
  • Veggies: Carrots, broccoli, collard greens, mushrooms
  • Carbs: Barley, rice, sweet potatoes

Glimmer of hope

The lovely Tashi

The lovely Tashi

We have seen some improvement since yesterday evening. Just as I was starting to panic about not urinating for almost 24 hours and had started leaving frantic messages for the vet and acupuncturist, there was a slight change in things.

Tashi picked her head up and started trying to crawl. Still nothing in her back legs, but she can move them a little.

Ooooh — we hope that this is the glimmer of hope that we have all been seeking for the past few days!!!

This morning, Tashi got up bright and early and moved herself to be close to me on the bed. Lovely start to my day!! We then carried her outside where she proceeded with her morning “bidness” all by herself. She’s crawling around right now, though difficult to see, this is far far better than the two most miserable days so far.

The wholistic diet

For the past three days Tashi (and now Zuri too) have been on a healthy, wholistic diet! For the past couple meals they’ve been eating better than both of us 🙂

So, the diet:

  • 40% protein:
    • chicken/turkey/duck
    • lean beef/lean lamb/lean pork/buffalo
    • eggs
    • salmon/white fish/tuna/clams
    • kidney/liver/gizzards – apparently super good!
  • 30% carbs:
    • sweet potato/yams/potato
    • barley/wheat/rice/pasta/oats/quinoa
    • squash/carrots (what, they are a carb?), pumpkin
  • 30% veggies:
    • mushrooms
    • zucchini
    • greens: collard/spinach/kale
    • broccoli/cabbage/cauliflower
    • peppers
    • cucumber
    • okra
    • asparagus
    • beans
    • ONIONS are not good for dogs!

The meal had to be grand enough, in honor of the start of Top Chef Masters :):

Wednesday's meal

Wednesday's meal

  • Protein for the day: chicken
  • Carbs: a combination of barley, rice, lentils, sweet potatoes
  • Veggies: collard greens, beans, zucchini, mushrooms, carrots

Tashi & Zuri sure seem to love the food! And we’ve worked out that it’s not that much more expensive than feeding them dog food.

They were on R/D until recently – though R/D appears to be quite crappy. Including 11% of the food filled with peanut hulls (for fiber they say)

Canidae is a much better substitute for weight loss/maintenance.

Figure out what you are feeding your dog and if it’s time for a change here: http://www.dogfoodanalysis.com

Self diagnosis

We were starting to lose hope. Tashi growled, grumbled and whined when we tried taking her out on Wednesday morning. She had not lifted her head off the bed, moved from her position or anything for a few hours. We were also starting to worry about urination and everything else. It was looking dreary.

After several google searches and several sites read we finally ran across a condition where the symptoms were eerily similar to what Tashi had exhibited. Could we have found her problem  by putting two and two together (sans CT scan and other tests)?

Intervertebral Disc Disease

Intervertebral disc rupture in the thoracolumbar region presents with variable degrees of pain; however, characteristic gait abnormalities begin to develop and progress in usually predictable patterns. Early in the course of the disease a pet may simply refuse to walk or jump as it had previously, then an ataxic (“drunken sailor” or wobbly in the hind end) gait develops. The front limbs appear normal but the hind feet will often cross as the pet steps. The entire hind end of the dog may sway without any real degree of coordination. Next to be lost is full motor function in the hind end, and the pet often will exhibit variable weakness and refusal or inability to walk or stand. This precedes complete loss of hind limb motor function. Usually at the same time, conscious ability to urinate is lost and the pet loses the ability to void (empty) its bladder completely. Urine pooling in the urinary bladder often leads to a large distended bladder and subsequent urine dribbling. Finally pain perception is lost, which is a sign of severe cord injury that can carry a guarded to poor prognosis.

Recommended treatment

A combination of steroids, acupuncture and physiotherapy was recommended on most websites. Let’s give Tashi every fighting chance we decide and attack this thing from all possible angles.

We started her on a combination of Pepcid + steroids and introduced yogurt into her diet to counteract the steroids and settle her stomach!

Treatment begins

Medicine Bowl

Medicine Bowl

Meds

  • Pepcid: 20mg: Stomach settling
  • Prednisone: 20mg: Neurological
  • Bu Yong Won: Neurological
  • Omega-3: Fish oil: Dysplasia
  • Glucosamine compound: Dysplasia
  • Tramadol: Pain
  • Chinese pain medication: unsure what the name is: Pain
  • Calcium: General

Other stuff

  • Sardines: General
  • Yogurt: General
  • Home cooked food: General
  • Lots of hours sunning in the backyard
  • Massages
  • Movement of her limbs so they don’t get too atrophied

Resources

Wholistic approach

Tashi has not moved the entire day, even trying to move her from one position to another causes a lot of wincing and whining. For those of you who don’t know Tashi – this is the dog that has lived much of her life with hip dysplasia and has still bolstered on at the dog park, beach or wherever we’d take her too with much enthusiasm. This is the dog that has lived life to her fullest and given love even more.

So, this is our Tashi I wonder? Wincing with every move? This is our Tashi?

What are our options? A possible CT scan that could indicate she has a spinal injury of some sort or possibly cancer.  The solution will then be spinal surgery which the vet says she may not be able to handle. Hence, that to us doesn’t seem like a solution.

Instead, we have decided to give acupuncture a shot. The acupuncturist came to our house this evening and gave Tashi a session.  She had some relief quite immediately (though she seems to be back in pain a few hours later). We’re also switching Tashi to a high quality diet – meat, rice, lots of veggies – to give this solid, strong one a fighting chance.

Now – we wait and see with bated breath and fingers crossed.