Loki's Diary

Dear Loki

June 21st 2010 10:03 am
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Dear Loki,

It has been 3 long months since you left us but it still feels like it was just yesterday. I miss you every second, and every minute of every waking day. You were more than just my dog, you were my best friend, my savior, you were my world. I miss waking up to you gently nudging my hand, and I miss falling asleep with you next to my bed. I still day dream about the day we took you to the river in Ft. Madison, where you bounded around in the snow, caught snow balls in your mouth, and barked at the guy who was trying to fix the Christmas lights in the park.

No matter how big you grew, you were always so very gentle. You knew when I needed comfort, and you were always there to give it to me. You knew when I felt unsafe and insecure, and you would stick your chest out like a macho dog, to make me feel safe again. You had a rough start to your life, and a rough ending, but i'm happy knowing that I gave you the best in between life you could ever have. I couldn't imagine how any human could treat such an amazing dog so horribly.

I never imagined having a dog for a best friend. But god couldn't have paired us at a more perfect time. You needed me, and I needed you...whether I knew it or not. I never wanted to imagine my life without out you, even from day one. But unfortunately every living thing has an end. I still feel your presence around me when I need you. So in the end...I never had to imagine my life without you, because I know, even though your physically not here...your still around me everyday and every night.

I love you my dear Loki, more than you know. And I miss you every single waking moment. It's been 3 months since you left this world...but I know deep down inside, you will always be there. R.I.P My sweet Savior.

 

Saying Goodbye

March 16th 2010 5:41 pm
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March 15th 2010 will be a day that I will never forget. But January 8th 2009 will forever be engraved in my heart.

Saying goodbye is never easy, no matter who or what it is thats leaving us, it still hurts..sometimes the pain is tolerable and sometimes the pain sinks to the deepest part of our souls. In my 25 years of life, I have said goodbye to many. My first cat, a few fish, My own daughter, and a man or two. Each loss has changed my life one way or another, they've made me stubborn in the ways of love and trust. But saying goodbye to the one life that changed me the most, the one life that saved me...is a pain that will never fully go away.

January 8th 2009- This day, was the day my life would forever change, and I never even seen it coming. I knew I wanted another dog, but I didn't know I was getting an angel. I searched high and low for a dog needing a new forever home. One that wasn't fortunate to find a human to love them unconditionally. I stumbled across an ad on kijji.com for a Male Saint Bernard puppy 6 months old. I was leery at first. How could such a large dog be safe around my kids? Will he be ill mannered, will he get along with my other dog? Why was an AKC registered Saint only $250.00?

I didn't care. My heart said to jump right in....and I did.

Loki turned out to be more than just a dog. He was my guardian angel, my best friend, my life. I welcomed him into my home, and into my heart and the hearts of my children and the hearts of the few people who he allowed into his heart. Loki and I shared a lot of the same pain. We both had trust issues with people, primarily men. We both needed someone, something to show us that it was okay to love and trust again. Little did we know we were each others teacher.

Even though the lessons were short, we both learned an amazing amount about life, love, and trust. I knew when I laid my head down at night, I had nothing in the world to worry about. I would hear Loki making his night time rounds checking on all the children before he finally came into my room to go to sleep. He made sure to let strangers know his house, his owner and his kids were off limits, even certain people in my family were considered off limits, and treaded on thin ice when here. My Loki never left my side...He was always in the same room with me at all times. He was always there when I needed him, whether it was just for a simple hug, or a shoulder to cry on...My Loki was always there.

In January of this year, Loki had a slip and fall accident. It was wet and snowy outside, and he slid on the tiled floors as he came inside. It didn't look like a horrible fall, in fact he never even fell, just banged his leg off the rabbit cage. It wasn't until a few days later we noticed him slightly limping. We checked his paw and leg for any sores, cuts or abrasions, and when we found nothing...we figured it was from the slip and fall. I took him to a very well known Vet in Morning Sun, Loki was diagnosed with a simple but very painful sprain/strain, and was given an anti inflammatory medication, and I was told he would heal up in 6-8 weeks, and to give him plenty of bed rest.

When the anti inflammatory didn't work, and the swelling of his leg had gotten worse, I knew it was something else. I called the vet back in Morning Sun, and he had advised me to get testing done as soon as possible, "It might be bone cancer" he said. My heart dropped, because some where, some how...I already knew.

The night of March 14th was a very exhausting night. My poor boy was constantly up, not being able to find a comfortable place to sleep, and crying when he did finally find a place to rest. I remember waking up and seeing him at my bed side, watching me sleep. His eyes seemed to beg me for help. I wanted so bad to be selfish, to ignore his cries...pretend I was hearing and seeing things. The thought of having to life the rest of my life without him absolutely killed me inside. I don't want to live without him....I don't think I can.

March 15th 2010- I remember sitting on the couch watching Loki sleep in his usual place by the dining room table, listening to him whimper, moan and cry tore me into a million little pieces. My boyfriend and I laid with him, petting him, hugging him as much as we could. We both knew what was next...Loki loved us and took care of us. At 1:45pm Monday March 15th 2010, Loki went to Rainbow Bridge. I will never forget what he has done for me and my family, he will always be "My Savior".

He wasn't just a dog. He was an Angel.

 

3rd day of our second try at raw!

December 20th 2009 6:17 pm
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So last night I thought I had some chicken breast in the freezer to feed the big guy, but it mysteriously went missing. The mystery was soon solved when I found out that the BF had eaten it for lunch the other day..uhg Men! So I broke down and fed him about 2 pounds of cooked nonseasoned beef shoulder roast, not something I will do everyday.

After his vomit bout on chicken, and how nasty it smelled, I was reluctant to refeed it him; can you blame me? Well he did pretty well after eating his roast, even had a spurt of energy about 20 minutes later.

Then this morning I was left a beautiful gift...splart! And the worse case I have ever experienced. It was very dark in color, with some texture to it, and it smelled to high heaven! I have quite the iron stomach, and have to raising 3 boys alone, and I can tell you I gagged the whole time I was cleaning it up. I know issues like this are common, and after talking to the lovely dogsters over in the raw forum, I have decided whole chicken, for 2 weeks is the way I am going to go. After all I would rather have him vomit, and eat it, then clean up poo!

Tonight, Loki is fine dining on his whole chicken, I am decreasing his intake from 4% to 3% during the 2 weeks of introduction. I am worried about weight loss since he is already under weight..but I can always bump up his intake after he adjusts. I will more than likely keep him on whole chicken until he can put some pounds on, that way if he eats a new protein that doesnt sit well with him. Once he gains weight, I think I will introduce beef, it's a bit more pricey, but it's red meat which is an important part of raw diet. I will also be bumping his intake up to 4% after the 2 weeks just to get the much needed weight back on his lil hips.

I know he is enjoying every last bit of being fed raw. He has always been pretty excitable around feeding time, but with raw its a whole new excitement for him, and it makes me feel like a very good and proud pup owner to satisfy and feed him something he enjoys to the fullest.

I will be praying, that I don't wake up to anymore poo in the morning, and I will also be praying that IF he does vomit, it's only bile...because last times chicken up chuck....even gagged my 5 year old son BOL!

 

Back to RAW!!!

December 18th 2009 11:59 pm
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Well I have officially decided to switch back to raw. I got rid of a wimpy husband who couldnt stand the blood, guts and gore, and with the divorce I am financially strained and this seems to be both better for his health and my wallet!

With the huge amount of stress on all family members, Loki ran into a few health issues, one being weight loss...significant weight loss. He could use a good 20-25 pounds of extra body fat/muscle. We had many nights of skipping meals to make our extremely expensive kibble last, and many days of eating the "purina crap", which I know contributed to his weight loss. He also has had issues with itchy skin, causing him to be very red, swollen and irritated to the point of major hair loss. We have gained control over this problem for the most part, but he seems to be still losing hair.


I started him on a whole chicken tonight, and will continue to feed this for about a week, and then try another protein like beef. I am still learning and trying to learn about raw feeding, so any tips or information would be great!

 

Second day on rotaional Raw

March 27th 2009 7:15 am
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Well lastnight, Loki once again puked. This time it was both whole drumsticks with bile. Hubby made the mistake of giving him the drumsticks lastnight, instead of chicken quarters. The drumsticks were partially frozen, and since Loki couldn't chew it, I guess he decided to just swallow both drumsticks whole. These drumsticks however are not the usual size, maybe a little smaller than a turkey drumstick, but not by much. They have a ton of meat on them, and are quite big, so I didn't think he could mow it down like he did.

Oh well, he seems to be fine this morning. We gave him his AM kibble. Tonight, he will get a half chicken fryer, and Ace will get the other half. I will charge the camera batteries this afternoon, so I can get pictures of them with their half chicken.

This is exciting, starting a rotational raw, maybe and hopefully the boys can go on a complete raw diet. They seem to love dinner time more than their breakfast, and even though their getting nothing but chicken......Loki still seems really interested in it. It's hard to find a food to keep Loki's interest, but this, this just might be my answer to his "boring" problems.

 

The Confidence Roadway....

March 12th 2009 10:22 am
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Well my trainer came out today to do some socializing with the boys. We went to a pet store and a dog park to see how the boys would react. Ace of course was anxious to run and play, but having the distraction was great to help work Ace with distractions, which is part of our training.

Loki was just magnificent! I know I posted several times about his low self esteem, some of this issue was from his abusive past. BUT! This time he didn't cower, didn't urinate on himself and didn't try to run and hide. He obeyed all his commands despite the barking crazy loose dogs running amuck. He didnt cower or wee on himself when strange men walked passed him. He was still leary, but my trainer narrowed it down to being really protective of me. Loki didn't show any leary or aggressive behavior towards men when my husband was alone with him or with me and Loki. But the second my husband walked out of the store and sat in the car...Loki began his protective behavior. Barking and letting men who approached ME know that he wasn't having it.

If the strange man approached Loki and paid me no attention he was fine, still leary but no barking, no growling, no nothing. But if the man approached me before Loki or showed any interest in me, Loki returned to his protective behavior. So we ruled out pure aggression, and we ruled out the "not liking men because he was beat by one" scenario. My trainer said he could be protective towards men with me, because he associates men as being aggressive, and doesn't want them being aggressive with me.

Not only is it men, but it is women aswell. A woman cannot approach me first or Loki's protective behavior comes out. If she approaches him first, once again leary, but nothing aggressive.

I also had my trainer "training me" aswell. He wanted me to pay very close attention to my feelings when a stranger approached me, as Loki could feed off those feelings. I have found that I am leary and nervous around men my age or my husbands age, for the simple fact of being over powered and hurt. I look up to my husband for protection, hence why Loki doesnt have the protective behavior when my hubby is with me. The woman thing I felt fine with. Having a woman confront me isn't a big issue as I do not feel threatened, but Loki still shows protective behavior.

So we narrowed it down FINALLY! It's not that he doesn't like men completely, he is feeding off of me. Now there is probably a dislike of men with Loki or certain men due to the abuse, but most of it my trainer feels is due to my feelings, body language, and tone of voice that sets him off. My trainer said, Loki just loves me and wants to keep me safe in most cases. BUT in other cases I am the one telling him through body language that he needs to be uncomfortable.

So not only will Loki continue his training, but I will also be in training aswell. I need to work on my confidence while my husband isn't with me, and I am around men. I just want my baby to be happy in his skin, and with himself. I don't mind him being protective, but I need to make sure that despite Loki's behavior.....I need to make sure that I am in control at all times.

Gosh I just love Loki so much! I have never had a dog who showed that much interest in taking care of me!

 

If all else fails.....

February 27th 2009 10:38 am
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If all else fails....Lick the human!

Well I am going to start adding canned blue buffalo to their blue buffalo kibble, in hopes that Loki will finally start eating normally. The bag calls for 4 1/2 cups of food, I like to feed twice daily, but Loki has decided that for some reason 2 cups is all he is going to eat......if he eats at all.

I have made sure my husband, friends, and family all know that the dogs are not to be fed to many treats. They are allowed treats twice a day, and only one treat at a time. We use the blue buffalo healthy crisps dog treats, as all the other yummy snackies are full of icky fillers, and bi-products aswell.

Im hoping that all it takes is adding some canned dog food to Loki's kibble in order to entice him to eat. I have tried taking the food away after 25 min, and setting it back out at his normal dinner time. He will eat a bite or 2 and be done with it. I really hope that he isn't the type of dog to literally starve himself than eat something he isn't fond of. My local petsmart had samples of Nutro, Royal Canin, and wellness core....so I got a sample of each and brought them home. Loki wouldn't touch any of it, but quickly gobbled down a small handful of the purina. I really don't want to put him back on it. I see a huge difference in him when feeding BB. His coat is shiny, less shedding, more playful and active, no more eye boogies ect....

However the one thing that still concerns me is his hotspots. They have yet to go away, so im wondering if it has to do with his skin in general, as Saints are prone to hotspots.

Anywho, I am keeping my fingers and toes crossed hoping that all it takes is canned dog food to get Loki interested in his food.

 

Not wanting to eat...

February 22nd 2009 10:19 am
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I made the switch from Purina large breed puppy chow to Blue buffalo large breed puppy life protection formula about a month ago, so he is still in transition. During the switch I also added ProBios Probiotics 4 tabs a day per body weight. Loki gets about 4 to 41/2 cups of food daily, which I split into 2 meals.

Here lately Loki has been refusing his morning food. I tried to mix it with warm water, and that did the trick for a few days, then back to not wanting to eat his breakfast. He eats dinner fine, but I would hate to feed him just once a day, large breed dogs need several small meals instead of one big meal to help protect them from bloat.

I went to walmart the other night when he refused to eat his dinner(rare) as he always eats dinner. I bought a store brand canned dog food, because petsmart is quite a drive, and were closed. I mixed half the can with his kibble, and even though he was picky with it, he actually ate. So now I am debating on mixing his food.

I know with a more hollistic food dogs get fuller faster, but Ace seems to eat his 2 meals despite it being dry or wet, although he loves it mixed with canned. Im not sure if this is an underlying problem, as my vet has not found any health issues with Loki that could be hendering his appetite.

I just know that I want my big love bug to be happy, and satisfied. He came from a not so great breeder, and I just want to give him the best. Maybe I am reading to much into the situation. He isnt losing weight or body mass yet, but it does concern me. Im not sure what I am supposed to do, as I have never had a problem with any of my other dogs. I just wish I knew what to do.

 
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