September 27th 2013 1:04 am
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It is NeeNee's Gotcha Day!!! She was adopted from Sheree's Dog Rescue near Dallas Texas in 2009. I flew there to meet her and stayed with Linda & Sabrina for a couple of nights. At the same time, Carol flew down from British Columbia and adopted her adorable schnauzer, Dixie! We all "knew" each other from Dogster, but it was our first actual meet up.
Since then NeeNee had major surgery to repair a fractured jaw, and our family has moved from California to Oregon. What a busy girl! Glad we gotcha, NeeNee! Thank you Linda and Sabrina for all that you do.
December 20th 2012 12:09 pm
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My pal Zaidie let me know that Bark Magazine has an article on a dog who had the same type of surgery I had!!! Last time I was at the UCD Vet hospital, Dr. Verstraete told mom that a total of 8 dogs have had the surgery - 4 with injured jaws and 4 with cancer in the jaw. Everyone of us has had 100% success!
We love our vets for taking such good care of us, and especially the UCD oral surgery team with Drs. Verstraete, Arzi and Farkus!!! THANK YOU for letting me have a normal life.
Here's the link to the article:
December 20th 2012 11:59 am
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Happy Birthday, sweet girl. You have been through so much in the last few years, and now you are such a happy girl. You have no more jaw pain after your surgery. You play more and trust more. You're such a mama's girl, and that's ok with me. It's all about making you feel safe in the world. You've come such a long way with that. When we first got you, you were afraid to walk through doorways and ran from everyone. Now you go outside and sun on the deck. You explore the garden on your own or with your brothers and sister. You take rides to town and visit others with me. And you chew on my hands, and sometimes bite down with that big solid jaw!!! Earlier this week, I had surgery out of town, so you had to stay with a new male house sitter!!! I never could've done that to you in the past. You've come so far at letting others near you, and we'll keep working on it.
I love you, sweet girl. Happy Birthday and many more to come!
September 28th 2012 6:34 pm
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I forgot to mention yesterday, that mom got me a new travel seat for the car! It's soft & cushy with nice sides to cozy up to. A seatbelt holds it in place on the car seat. It also has a strap that secures me in the seat, although I prefer running around on the full back seat BOL. But I get restless and sometimes try to jump into the front seat. It boosted me too high where I saw everything outside the window, so mom removed the bottom cushion and put in one of my quilts. PERFECT! I love riding in it now. I can sit next to it if I feel like I want more freedom, and I can stand up to look out of the window when I want. Cozy!
Today, mom and I went back to UC Davis vet clinic. That's 3 days in a row that mom has driven there, but it's our last appointment this week. First, I saw Dr. Farkus again because I coughed a lot during the night, more than usual after being intubated. But my lungs & heart are clear, so no worries. Actually, now it's only an occasional cough. It was just due to tracheal irritation from the breathing tube they used.
We then met with a veterinarian specializing in nutrition. Mom had previously sent him detailed information on what I eat - meals, treats, supplements, etc. The vet reviewed all of the details and answered tons of questions. He will design a home cooked diet especially for me based on age & activity level, including proteins, carbohydrates, fat, minerals and vitamins, and suggested treats. I have been eating raw food, but due to the implant that I have, the vets think the potential for infection may be too risky. If I get an infection and it spreads into the teeth/gums/jaw, it can be very disastrous. Mom doesn't want to risk that after all I've been through. Mom is fine with cooking for me, as a matter of fact she may do long distance consults for the rest of the pack. We just need a referral from our vet back in Oregon. Schnauzers even more than shih tzus have a potential of pancreatitis and hyperlipidemia. Also, we want to avoid obesity in anyone. They base calories on activity level. I'm more sedentary than the others. Anyway, mom will receive a letter with the specifics for the diet, and they will be able to communicate to refine it or discuss any issues. We're really looking forward to it.
If anyone is interested in doing this, look at the UC Davis Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital website, then look for small animal services. There is a link for Nutrition services. Click on Fact Sheets/Brochures/Newsletters/Forms. There is a lot of info available, but also the referral and diet history forms that need to be completed. Since I had been there this week, I had updated labs & vet referral from dentistry. Mom requested a formulation for home cooked meals. They usually do disease specific diets for pets, but they will do home cooked diets too.
Well, mom is packing tonight and we'll be heading home tomorrow. What an eventful week!
September 28th 2012 12:46 am
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It's been an exciting week! Mom and I drove down to California for my follow-up appointment with my vets at UC Davis. First, we stopped along the way so she could see an orthopedic surgeon about getting her knee surgery in a couple of months. Then we checked into our hotel in California. I have stayed here a few times and the people are all so nice to me!
My first appointment was a spa day with my former groomer, Miss Kathy! She is always SO nice to me. She even already gave me my Christmas presents! Then yesterday mom took me to the clinic and left me!!! I was very brave while I went through my pre-op evaluations. Everything checked out ok. Everyone said I looked great - good weight, nice fur, jaw firm. My blood work looked good and anesthesia said I was good to go. I wish I could've gone!!! I was nervous being away from mom, but I was very brave too!
Then today I had anesthesia, X-rays & CT scan of my jaw, and a dental cleaning. They saw new bone growth since last time!!! And everything thing looked good, no complications have occurred. The whole team was there again, Drs. Verstrate, Arzi and Farkus, and my current vet student Francesca. They always treat me & mom like we're rock stars or something. Dr. Verstrate talked with mom about the 8 successful surgeries they have done using the same technique (I'm one of the eight). He said 4 of us dogs had jaws that were injured (like me), while 4 of them had portions removed due to tumors. All 8 of us are doing well with good results. It's nice to be a member of a group that has had 100% success!!!
Tonight, I'm back with mom at the hotel. Snoozing on & off. I'm drinking water ok, and even ate a little dinner. I cough sometimes but that's not unusual after having a breathing tube in your throat.
Tomorrow, I go back to the nutrition clinic at UCD vet hospital! We are meeting with a veterinary nutritionist who is going to advise mom on a home cooked diet. Let's hope they say I get to eat more treats!!!!
I'll give you the update on the nutrition consult!
Sweet dreams everyone.
September 17th 2012 10:11 am
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Here's another link to a great article on the jaw surgery I had last year. Whiskey had a tumor and had to have a portion of his jaw removed. He then was able to regrow the jaw bone. I didn't have a tumor, but I had a gap in my jaw from a fracture that I got at a puppy mill. My jaw regrew & is back to normal now. Read this exciting news!
And here's a video of Whiskey after surgery! He's famous now & so are my vets.
Mom recently talked to Dr. Arzi about my upcoming visit. This is what he said about all of the media attention, "We are all very excited about this reconstructive work and especially that we can improve on the quality of life of our patients. You are all very inspiring to us." Isn't he the nicest vet? I'm so excited that I was dog #2 with this surgery, and now we're seeing success for so many others. Yippeeee!!!! And I get to go see them next week to get a CT scan to see how it's going. I'll be sure to report back.
September 16th 2012 11:47 pm
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Here's a link about another dog who had the same surgery that I did!!!
(Sometimes dogster doesn't let you cut and paste links, but it's really worth reading so you might want to type it into your browser).
I'm doing great. In a couple of weeks, I'm going back to UC Davis to see Drs. Arzi and Verstraete. I'll be getting a dental cleaning and a CT scan. I'll be so glad to see my old doctors and show them how well I'm doing!
April 1st 2012 1:11 pm
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So far, mom hasn't played any tricks on us. Probably because it has been raining nonstop for 4 days. Every one has been asking dad if he's gonna build an ark. Is that a place for us to bark, with some kinda accent? Mom says, "no silly, when the water rises we have to get on a boat and paddle away". Doesn't she know that shih tzus don't swim??? Mom says, "no worries we're not in a flood area". Yeah, I said, "either were our pals, the Lafayette Little Rascals, and look what happened to them. They had to stand on their bed while the water was rising around them"!!! Mom says "we live way up on a hill and we'll see the water rising long before it gets here...I hope". I said "well let's hope the hill doesn't give away because I don't do mud skiing either!"
Actually, we're doing just fine except when we have to go potty the schnauzers don't want to go outside. Silly boys! Lily and I don't mind a little wet. And besides, we get to cozy up with mom in some warm blankets and get warm by the pellet stove. We're all snug as bugs in a rug, mom says. Silly mom. Oops, mom's not silly, she's the one with the treats!
Happy Spring everyone.
January 26th 2012 9:03 pm
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Today I went to the UCDavis veterinary clinic for my six month followup after surgery. They had set up an appointment to do anesthesia and radiographs. But when I got there, they decided against it. I've had NO problems. Several doctors examined me and said my jaw feels firm and there are no complications from the screws into the gum. They said it just didn't warrant putting me through the anesthesia!!! I said YAY, and mom said YAYAYAYAY! AND I don't have to go back for X-rays until the next time I get my teeth cleaned, in about 9-12 months. In other words, great outcomes all the way around. They're hoping I go back to UCD for that.
In the meantime, since we moved to Oregon it is really a Looooooong drive to UCD. So mom found a veterinary dentist in Eugene, Oregon about 3 hours from our house. She is one of only 3 in Oregon and is known to my vets. Mom talked to her, and she has agreed to follow me if needed or to do X-rays. Of course, if I have any surgery needs, I'll need to go back to UCD.
So the future is bright! In the meantime, I'm getting really spoiled by mom and loving it!
December 19th 2011 9:59 pm
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Happy Birthday sweet NeeNee!!! You've been with us for 2 years now and have lived through so many changes. I'm so glad you live with us, you are my special little girl. The moment we met we had a special connection. When you first joined us, you were so afraid of everything except the other dogs. I worked with a behaviorist who taught me how to gain your confidence. You're a quick study so you came around. Then we found out that there would be many other challenges in your training and health. We worked through each issue as it arose with the help of a trainer, and you continued to improve. You joined our family about the time I was going to retire, so we've travelled extensively. We've visited family, met lots of dogs new to you, stayed in hotels, and even went on 10 hr drives to Oregon. Although you were nervous you learned to cope and improved each time. Now you're a seasoned traveler and welcome everywhere you go.
Our biggest challenge was realizing that your jaw was fractured when we got you. It was not a new fracture, but you were in pain. Your jaw was so displaced you could not chew or shut your mouth on the lower left side. CT scans showed that a segment of your jaw was fractured and there was a free floating piece about the size of my little finger. After a year of working on your behavioral issues, this past year was about having that repaired. The first vet felt that he could place a plate with screws to hold your jaw together, but there was a 30% chance it would not work. Those didn't seem like high enough odds for us. So we went to the UC Davis Veterinary Clinic Dental Surgery specialists who were open to an idea that dad presented. He had experience with humans in the use of Bone Morphogenic Protein which generates bone growth. The University of Washington had been using it for your type of fracture. Dad offered to get some for you, but one of the research vets donated it for your use. You went through extensive surgery with a very long recovery. You were in so much pain, took so much medicine but you had no complications and you healed. You had to be isolated from the others and your activity monitored so that you wouldn't hurt yourself. We were inseparable for months during your recovery. We developed our own language. You learned to trust me and let me know your needs. Now you've recovered completely and your surgery was 100% successful (you've regrown the bone & your jaw is strong).
You have shown the resilience and strength of a wise old soul. You have become a happy playful dog. You still have a few issues, but based on where we started they are minor. You have taught me so much about love, patience, perseverance, trust and strength. Just a little 9 pound dog who went through all of this and came out so well. You and I have a special bond that is life changing for both of us. I will be here for you, sweetie!
We will celebrate your birth day with special joy! Almost as much as you bring me.
love you baby,
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