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DogDaz Zoo: We Will Never Forget

me 9/11 north tower

We shall never forget! Here is Mommy at the 9/11 North Tower Memorial pre-opening in 2012. Mommy grow up in NY so the devastation hit hard for her home state, but we live outside of Washington, DC now, so when the planes crashed at the Pentagon, the devastation directly affected our friends and family as well. May we never have to experience this terror again. – DogDaz Zoo

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Posted by on September 11, 2022 in Animals

 

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Wonderful Wednesday: Mini Memories 2021

Facebook makes these little videos that come up on my feed. This one, of Mini Cooper, was really sweet.

Have an awesome Wednesday.

Just another DogDaz morning at the zoo ❤

 
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Posted by on July 27, 2022 in Dogs

 

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DogDaz Zoo: Charles Turns 14

2022 has been a rocky year for Charles so far but it is only going to go up from here (or so Mom says).

14 years young in little dog years hopefully has a lot of runway left for adventures and treats.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, MR. HANDSOME! 

Just another DogDaz morning at the zoo ❤

 
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Posted by on July 15, 2022 in Animals, Dogs

 

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DogDaz Zoo: Louise Is Now An Angel

There are almost no words to express the deep pain that we feel after the loss of Louise last Friday, June 17.

She was such an excellent soul. Quiet and gentle; the cats all wanted to be her friend; the dogs all looked up to her. She never complained even at the end when I knew how much her back must hurt with a compressed or ruptured disk that made it almost impossible for her to walk. Stoic to the end – she did not like me helping her to get around and especially not to go to the bathroom. What is weird is that, since the oral cancer diagnosis last December, we thought that was what would take her from us. But, I guess, the powers that be had other ideas.

We want to believe that she is running free in that big meadow in the sky over the rainbow bridge with Sofie and Nine, and her big brother Squash, who left when she was only a puppy. Now I hope she is with her best friends Mojo and Amy, who she missed every day since they too left this earthly plane, and whom she never stop sniffing for.

Go softly, my sweet Louise. Your memory will always be a blessing to us. Thank you for letting us be your family for 12-1/2 years.

Just another DogDaz morning at the zoo ❤

 
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Posted by on June 18, 2022 in Animals, Dogs

 

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DogDaz Zoo: Bang Your Drums for Lulu

Louise’s health has taken a turn for the worse. Actually, it is not the oral cancer but other issues. Last week her anal glands got infected and on Saturday her back went out again. We believe that her disks are compressed and she is not responding to medication the way she did in April. Dignity and honor are our codes here at the zoo. We never want them to be in pain or to be so debilitated that they cannot function.

I don’t think I can post for a while until her health stabilizes if it does. And we are also dealing with Charles’s enlarged heart, kidney stones, and bladder stone situation. Bang your drums, say your prayers, and keep them in your thoughts. This has just been a horrible few months. We are not over losing Nine and Sofie in March.

Just another DogDaz morning at the zoo ❤

 
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Posted by on June 15, 2022 in Dogs

 

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DogDaz Zoo: Not Good News for Charles

 

We thought Charles had a UTI so off to the vet we went. When he starts licking himself more than usual, that tends to be a sign.

As you can see in the picture above, Charlie was not too happy when the vet said she had to take him in the back and look at his privates.

Because Charles has a known heart murmur, she wanted to do an x-ray to see how his heart was doing. Well, we were surprised at what the x-ray told us.

First – Charles’ heart is enlarged. An ENLARGED HEART (dilated cardiomyopathy) is more common in large dogs (our luck). Not knowing the underlying cause we can’t say if it was because of an infection or some structural problem. Right now, we are just in watch mode due to other issues. From the x-ray, his lungs are clear (all that nice dark area around the heart in the ribs is the lungs), which means that they are not currently seeing congestive heart failure (which would be very bad). The vet said that you should be able to fit 3 hearts in that cavity.

Second – When they took the heart x-ray she notice that he has KIDNEY STONES (arrow above but see closer image below). This was an ‘incidental finding’ since she was actually x-raying his heart. According to pethealthnetwork.com, metabolic kidney stones, those that form due to some blood or urinary imbalance, are a bit more common than those from infection. The most common type is calcium oxalate. There are several different types of stones (we are learning). Stones tend to be a small dog thing but usually females. We are hoping they are not calcium oxalate but actually something called Struvite. That is a composite of magnesium, ammonium, and phosphate and can be dissolved, where the calcium oxalate can’t.

Third – and most critical at the moment – was the finding of BLADDER STONES, and a ton of them. Again we have no idea what caused all these stones, but the poor man has a ton in his bladder. Some theories are that the stones are caused by bacterial infection, body metabolism, previous disease, or dietary factors, like a lack of certain vitamins. Like kidney stones, there are several types: struvite, urate, xanthine, cystine, and calcium oxalate. Our hope is that these are struvite stones because they are the easiest to deal with.

I know your next question is how does one deal with the stones. There are several options.

  1. Dietary Dissolution
  2. Surgical Removal
  3. Non-surgical urohydopropulsion
  4. Ultrasonic dissolution

First, we are trying dietary dissolution. He is on a special Royal Canin Urinary SO diet and absolutely nothing else. The hope is that this food will begin to dissolve the stones. If nothing else, the vet hopes that it will at least make no new ones grow. He is also on an antibiotic (because he probably does have a UTI which is what we thought). Luckily, so far, he likes the food. I mix both wet and dry. We are making sure that he is passing urine every time he goes to the bathroom because the biggest concern, especially with a male, is a urinary blockage because of the stones. The vet said we need to take him to ER immediately if that happens. We are blessed that there is an Animal ER in town.

We go back on June 24th for another x-ray to see what is going on. He seems less lethargic and happier the last week, so maybe the food is working. Beat your drums for him. He is going to need all your prayers.

Just another DogDaz morning at the zoo ❤

 
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Posted by on June 6, 2022 in Dogs

 

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DogDaz Zoo: Mom’s Are …

Mom’s are for walking on.

Mom’s are pillows.

Moms are for hugs.

Moms are healers.

Just another DogDaz morning at the zoo ❤

 
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Posted by on May 8, 2022 in Animals, Cats, Dogs

 

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Thankful Thursday: Goofballs

I am so  thankful to have had and still have such wonderful goofballs in my life. 

Nine loving spring

The Muffin Man
In my pocketbook

Squash Laughing

 

Just another DogDaz morning at the zoo ❤

 
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Posted by on April 28, 2022 in Animals, Cats, Dogs

 

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Monday Mischief: Play with Me!

Mini so wants Charles to play with her and be her buddy. He tolerates her but really doesn’t want much to do with it. She is persistent though. And one day he is going to engage, in a nice way.

What kind of mischief did you get into today?

Just another DogDaz morning at the zoo ❤

 
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Posted by on April 18, 2022 in Cats, Dogs

 

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DogDaz Zoo: And Now We Are 5

Note to readers: This is a long and sad post, but I think it is time you knew.

The new normal is not normal, at least not yet. Going from 7 to 5 animals has taken us to many different places in the last month. We are adjusting, but it will take time. Losing both the lead cat and the lead dog within a week of each other has us in a bit of a tailspin. Actually, I think the zoo is adjusting better than I am.
Noel & Mini

I think Mini really has taken the loss of her brother, and mischief partner, Nine, the hardest. She was so attached to him and really needs another animal to play with. She always whined but now, OMCat, she is constantly needing attention. Noel, being 15 and never being a social cat, gives Mini a little sniff now and then, but basically, Noel wants to sleep and cuddle with me. Mini would love to play with Charles, but he wants nothing of it.

Stella

Stella, of course, who is constantly in motion (hence the blur), knows nothing of the loss of Nine and Sofie, so she just carries on being Stella. I think that Mini is talking to her under the door more because I am hearing a lot of hissing going on. Stella, as you may remember, lives in her own suite, and loves it. I wish she could be friends with the other animals, but she just ‘wants to be alone,’ (except for humans, of course). She actually did like Sofie coming to visit, but it wasn’t that often that it will affect her.

Louise & Charles

And then there is Louise and Charles. Though Louise had Sofie in her life for 11 years (Lulu is 12), I am not sensing a big change in her mood or routine. Lulu was always very quiet and self-contained at home and just goes about doing her thing. She mostly lives in her own world and just carries on, cancer and all (but that is another story). They may have been together all these years, but I think Sofie needed Louise more than the other way around. Louise leans on me and that is about it.

Charles, being the FOMO (fear of missing out) dog that he is, followed (and feared) Sofie, I guess because she was the loudest, but also because she was something to be feared when you are only 17lbs. At first, after she was gone, he looked for her, especially when they went out in the yard. He was not sure what was going on, ‘where’d she go?’ but now, several weeks later, he follows Louise instead.

It Is Very Different Now Without Sofie

The zoo is much quieter now without all Sofie’s endless barking, and sad but true, much safer for all the animals with her gone; all her anxiety and aggression no longer permeates the house. I did not blog much about her battle, for years, with mental illness, though I have many posts in draft that never were published.

With Sofie gone, Charles no longer has to eat with the kennel door closed to stay safe from Sofie’s food aggression and the cats no longer have to sneak past her, fearful they could be attacked at any moment. There is no more resource guarding, fear-biting, or constant nibbling on something for security. There is no more endless barking at every sound (she could hear a fox a mile away or a UPS truck), because she needed to make it go away or stop. There are no more sleepless nights trying to console her when thunderstorms rolled through or fireworks blasted. I don’t have to constantly make sure that Charles is at a safe distance from her, because his little-dog frenetic energy would freak her out and she would attack him. And, near the end, she started biting Louise at feeding time (in the mouth where Louise’s tumor is). She just could not control her anxiety and aggression and neither could I.

Sofie was taking 6, sometimes 7, different medications for anxiety, aggression, and pain, multiple times a day, so that schedule is now gone for me.

But, after years of Sofie being by my side, sometimes so close that I stepped on her; being so present and constant and needing so much care and attention from me, the void is huge. She made me laugh. She could be so silly. She smiled at me and loved me in a way no other dog ever had. She was my cuddle dog. Despite her fears and anxiety, she was my heart and I believe I was her’s. After you have taken care of a sick animal (or human) for years, especially if the care is around mental health issues, you feel guilty that you feel relieved when they die. You feel empty because every day for years, you took special care of that being, many days with an exhausting routine, but you did it because you loved them.

Missing Nine

Nine was an easy cat. I think sometimes, the good child doesn’t get as much attention because the ‘problem children’ suck all the energy out of you. But there is also a big hole where his energy used to be in the zoo. We feel it every night when we sit in the living room and he is not there. We feel it in the laundry room, which was his favorite place, and he isn’t in his bed by the furnace; or climbing in the rafters.

Finding a new balance will take time.

But I know they are waiting for us on the rainbow bridge.

And now we are 5.

Just another DogDaz morning at the zoo ❤

 
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Posted by on April 9, 2022 in Cats, Dogs

 

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