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Jasper's diary

Discussion in 'Dog Diaries' started by JudyN, Nov 29, 2017.

  1. JudyN

    JudyN Moderator Moderator Registered

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    Thanks Hemlock - if I do get some, I'll ask them where they source it. They may well make their own from chickens their regular supply comes from, but it would be worth double checking.
     
  2. Flobo

    Flobo Well-Known Member Registered Partner

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    Re the teeth cleaning, what about some chunky dried tripe sticks? Nice and rough but probably won't take him long to eat!
     
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  3. Finsky

    Finsky Well-Known Member Registered

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    Yep....I was wondering about that as now that I've done little googling, all past adverts for bone meal (for animal feed) are coming out as 'out of stock' and it could be because of the regulation changes after BSE. I know that many natural fertilizers containing bone meal (and blood too) carry warning for not to use where livestock might get access for for it.
    However....I did come across this one product... Bone Meal Powder : Amazon.co.uk: Health & Personal Care, though it is sold as human supplement.
     
  4. JudyN

    JudyN Moderator Moderator Registered

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    Despite Jasper's mental decline, he's pretty much the same as usual during the day. He does have the odd random barky moment when on his bed, which might be because he wants to be somewhere else (or needs a wee) but getting up is a bit of an effort, and he's much more barky/whiny when it's coming up to walkies time.

    But one thing he's been doing more of is digging holes in the garden. And when he goes into the garden, he'll inspect all of his holes, maybe digging a bit deeper, and then stand over them barking. I don't think he's guarding them, and I don't think he thinks there's any creatures down there. But I think he's trying to tell me something about them. Any ideas, anyone?

    As far as I'm concerned, given his declining health, if he wants to dig he can. So far, Mr N hasn't complained, so I'm just hoping J doesn't dig up any prized plants or cause the shed to subside, or that might change...
     
  5. Hemlock

    Hemlock Well-Known Member Registered

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    Can't help with the digging, but good for Mr. N. not complaining.

    Would Jas transfer his excavations to a sandpit, if you hid some toys in there? Or might that affect his resource guarding?
     
  6. JudyN

    JudyN Moderator Moderator Registered

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    He's not that into toys, and has never really guarded them, though I wouldn't trust him with a new squeaky one. My feeling is that it wouldn't have the right 'feel' under his feet, nor smell interesting. The places he digs are mostly the backs of borders which I suspect foxes and cats use. He does have one location where we've tried to relocate his digging in the past, but he would always go back to his favourite spots.

    Since I've got into photographing bugs, the garden is pretty much a wildlife reserve, and for that reason it is generally pretty messy, and we've done very little tidying up over the winter to provide as much habitat for the bugs as possible. So to be fair, it's not as if a hole or two is going to ruin the look too much!
     
  7. Hemlock

    Hemlock Well-Known Member Registered

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    Ah well - we have to let them do what they enjoy if it isn't making our own lives that difficult. Good that you always try to understand him.
     
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  8. JudyN

    JudyN Moderator Moderator Registered

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    It's quite odd. After we got back from a walk just now, he couldn't settle, but wanted to go into the garden. He carefully inspected his three main holes in turn (one is now more of a trench snaking round the back of the border:eek:), had a bit of a scrape in each, and then came in and settled down (naturally, I have to be out there with him). It seems so purposeful, rather than a youngster's 'Hell yeah, let's DIG!!'

    Having a poke around the internet, it could be a denning, security thing. But really, the underlying reason is almost certainly that he's gradually losing all his marbles, and he didn't have a full bagful to start off with. One day at a time, one day at a time, one day at a time....
     
  9. Flobo

    Flobo Well-Known Member Registered Partner

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    I think that is exactly it... he has a purpose, no matter how odd or random it may seem and to me,(like you), being there and supporting him in whatever way manifests is all you can do really. If he settles once his mind is settled, once all is well in the garden hole department, then good enough eh.
    Tomorrow it could all be something different, one thing living with our hounds as they get, um, special (or more special!:rolleyes:) is that you learn to go with the flow, and literally take 'one day at a time'...(or sometimes even one moment at a time!)
     
  10. JudyN

    JudyN Moderator Moderator Registered

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    Yep :) And it's just occurred to me that I did rather fancy a second garden pond..... :D
     
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  11. Hemlock

    Hemlock Well-Known Member Registered

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    He's probably thinking, "Hey - I used to enjoy this - I wonder what I saw in it"

    Or else he'd digging elephant traps.
     
  12. JudyN

    JudyN Moderator Moderator Registered

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    Sigh.

    Jasper has been limping heavily on his front right since Sunday - the leg that's given him gyp before, but it seems worse. One of the pads looks quite rough, and there is a crack, so I've been putting Musher's Secret on. Can cracks that appear relatively minor cause such pain? He's much better on soft ground/grass, though we can't restrict him to that as he struggles getting in and out of the car. I've had a feel of his leg and pressed each pad, with no reaction - though I might not be doing it firmly enough.

    I reckon the three most likely possibilities are:

    1) Arthritis/other joint issues. He's already on anti-inflammatories, so I'm not sure much could be done (apart from rest).

    2) A crack. In which case I need to try to keep it soft (but not too soft), and look out for any signs of infection/foreign body.

    3) A corn. We've been there before, and they're almost impossible to shift.

    If the vet can't examine him properly, there's not much point taking him. I might take along Mr R and we'll just have to try to immobilise him even if he is in a right state. I really, really don't want him to be sedated, and I doubt X rays/examination would reveal anything we could treat beyond what we're already doing anyway.

    I'm going to try to get a decent photo of his pad at some point in case that helps.
     
  13. Hemlock

    Hemlock Well-Known Member Registered

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    I think you are right to give it a few days, especially given how much it will stress Jasper if he goes to the vet. Once he is that upset, he won't react to pain in a helpful way, so examination probably won't show what is really wrong, and painkillers are pointless in this kind of situation - more to mollify owners than solve anything. Painkillers have their uses, but not in these sort of cases.

    It may well resolve (a strain) and the Musher's ointment should help if it is a corn.

    Minor cracks can be very painful, and lurchers don't, as you know, do pain all that well.
     
  14. Flobo

    Flobo Well-Known Member Registered Partner

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    I can't remember but will Jasper wear a coat of some kind? If it is an arthritis thing maybe keeping that shoulder/elbow area warmer may help a bit... if he does tolerate a coat you could even try a small heat pad stuck to topside of it, if supervised of course!
     
  15. JudyN

    JudyN Moderator Moderator Registered

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    Yep, he yowls if the vet just touches him on his rump!

    Flobo, I don't think he'd take to a coat - he used to have one for if it was both cold and wet, but one day he just refused to leave the house in it, like a kid who had just discovered it's not cool :D It's a good suggestion, but he tends to run hot anyway - the first day we can really feel some warmth in the sun he'll start panting.

    When I looked earlier, that pad really did look a bit of a mess, so I'm hoping that is the cause. I just need to wait for a good photo opportunity when it's clean and dry, as I don't want to worry him by spending too long looking at it. Maybe my macro lens will show up something interesting...
     
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  16. JudyN

    JudyN Moderator Moderator Registered

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    Exhibit A:

    Paw.JPG
    I suspect that dot in the middle of the pad is a corn. Though there also seems to be something lurking in between the pads, even though I had a feel up there this morning. I'll have more of a delve on tomorrow's walk when he's muzzled...

    Also, I'm also wondering if the claw has worn down a bit too far. They do wear down naturally, but maybe he's scuffing more because of the lack of stability in his back end.
     
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2022
  17. RGC

    RGC Well-Known Member Registered

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    Can you see the quick?
     
  18. JudyN

    JudyN Moderator Moderator Registered

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    I couldn't see any more than was in the photo, RGC. But, we have progress...:)

    I could feel something sharp between his pads - it almost felt like a big toenail - and managed to loosen it, but it seemed to be attached to some fur. Later on the walk, Mr R had a delve and pulled out what felt like a ridge of mud. Jasper still limps a bit on hard surfaces, but nothing like as bad as before. I've given it a good bathe in Hibiscrub and couldn't feel anything else in there so hopefully that's the problem solved.

    And we had no protests at all apart from pulling his foot away when he'd had enough. I tend to expect him to react back in the days when he was mad, bad and dangerous to know. Now he's just mad:D
     
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  19. Flobo

    Flobo Well-Known Member Registered Partner

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    Ah that's good news, fingers crossed that was it and a nice simple fix, phew!.
    Jake had really fluffy yeti feet, (as I used to call them!)and I was regularly having to check between the pads and constantly trimming. I always imagined having a hard dry bit of mud stuck there, no matter how small, was a bit like us walking around with a stone in our boot. Thankfully he was always quite a chilled dog and didn't mind me fiddling with his feet!!
     
  20. JudyN

    JudyN Moderator Moderator Registered

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    He's still struggling a bit on hard ground, but not as badly - we made it to the park this afternoon and I didn't feel the need to curtail his walk. He does often get beech nuts stuck between his pads, but then he normally stops and lifts the paw for me to get it out. So the jury's still out - I'll keep moisturising it and taking photos in case they reveal anything else.

    He must have been out and in the kitchen door about 10 times, crying and barking in between, from 10pm to 1am last night... And then he heard me go for a wee a bit before 6am and decided it must be morning:confused: As my elderly neighbours say every time I ask how they are, 'Old age doesn't come alone':eek:
     

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