Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Sometimes if it's not one thing, it's another

What is it about April?  It was just last April when our girlie started to kick off with a whole host of GI issues centered around diarrhea.  Bloodwork, ultrasounds, and nutritionist consults left us feeling rather frustrated and convinced that we would not get to the root of Abby's problems.  After an attempt at Purina OM that left us feeling like the food was not working, we tried moving Abby to Hill's Prescription I/D canned food.  This food has left Abby having solid stools, but the issue of Abby burping up is one that has continued to perplex us.  Now I should state that Abby doesn't burp up all the time, and certainly it didn't seem to be something that bothered her when it happened.  But within the past few weeks I've noticed that this burping seems to take her by surprise, and literally she can't control it.  There is no purging associated with it, and it certainly doesn't seem to be a vomit situation.  But all of a sudden Abby could be walking or just laying down and suddenly it just comes out of her. 

There's two different theories that I have about this problem.  The first is that this problem didn't occur until she changed to canned food.  If I had to think of what is different, that certainly would be it.  But at the same time, not only did her GI issues kick off in April, but her latent fear reactivity kicked off around the same time.  In June we brought Abby to see a vet behaviorist and we increased her Clomicalm slightly from a half tablet twice daily to three quarters of a tablet twice daily.  One side effect listed on Clomicalm is vomiting.  I would be doing a disservice to Abby if I didn't at least consider that this was a possibility.  However, one of these hypotheses is easier to test than the other.  So I'm adding a bit of dry Hill's I/D to her food and I hope to transition her over to at least a 50/50 ratio to see if this improves.  If not then I may need to investigate options for helping her with this.  Currently I've been giving her a 10 mg tablet of Pepcid half an hour before each meal and I've not noticed any improvement.  Hopefully the dry food will do the trick. 

I am really excited and nervous to say that in two weeks I will be attending the TACT Seminar that Emma Parsons and Julie Robitaille will be presenting.  I hope that it will give me another tool in my wheelhouse to work with some of Abby's reactivity, to reshape how she views situations, and to help us both feel more confident in stressful situations.  I have to admit I'm nervous.  I will be in with dog trainers, people you hire to help you with the problems you have.  But I felt inspired after talking with our trainer about this, who told me that I am a dog trainer with a very small audience. 

And finally I leave you with one other link if you are feeling so inclined.  On June 10, 2012, we will be going to the NHSPCA Paws Walk in Stratham, NH.  It seems like just yesterday it was May 29, 2010 and we were at their facility looking at their available dogs to see if we could find one.  My husband will tell you that he knew we were going home with a dog that day.  I will tell you that I never envisioned my life changing in the way that it did that day.  I don't like to think of Abby as a rescue.  The question of whether she is or not in my mind has always been a touchy one.  It isn't that succinct.  And beyond that, the presumption is that we saved her when really the opposite is true.  She saved us.  Each and every day I am completely amazed by her, and I feel so lucky that she has come into our lives.  We feel so blessed to have her, and the least that we can do on that day is walk in support of an organization that has enabled us to welcome Abby home.  She was meant to be ours.  So I know that times are tough and everyone is stretched thin.  If you are able to donate, we would be so thrilled by your support.  And if you are free on June 10th and wish to walk with us, we would love the company.  Here is the link to my donation page.

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