Lucy Goes to the Vet

[Originally posted to blogoSFERICS]

Lucy’s got her shots and a rabies tag, as well as a flea-and-tick treatment that should actually work, unlike the retail treatment Chris bought and we applied shortly after we first got her. We received reassurance about some of the things we’d noticed about her—a dewclaw that was growing the wrong way, a couple of bare patches on her chest that the vet called “hot spots,” and so on.

She did not, however, begin a heartworm preventative, having tested positive for those potentially deadly parasites. The vet is sure we caught the infestation early enough that we don’t even need to be in a massive hurry to get her treated (though we will start the treatment as soon as feasible). The treatment will take a grand total of about six weeks, during which we need to keep her confined and her activity level down. And it makes sense that we keep her activity level down until we can get her started on the treatment. So no more of those running-hellbent-for-leather romps I discovered she likes. And maybe after the ‘worms are all gone and we can resume those romps, she’ll take longer to decide she’s had enough anyway.

The vet also couldn’t find any sure indication that she’s been spayed, and he thinks she may have had a litter of puppies once upon a time. Oh, and although I had thought she could be four to six years old, the vet says more like 2½. So it isn’t just that she’s an unusually cheerful middle-aged dog who tires easily because she’s getting old, she’s a cheerful young dog who tires easily because she’s not altogether well. But she will be. And I thought it was hard keeping up with her now.

Anyway, after the heartworm treatment we’ll get her spayed, and then we think we might go ahead and have her implanted with an ID chip.



[Originally posted to blogoSFERICS]

Well, we’ve picked up another stray, and this one appears to really be a stray. In the photos she looks a lot better than she did when she followed one of my wife’s co-workers (see comment) home a few days ago—she’s been bathed and exercised since. The red collar she’s wearing is all there is, no tag, no tattoos, no distinguishing characteristics.

I’m estimating her age at four or five years; she has no gray at the muzzle yet but her collar, though loose about her neck, has been on its current setting quite some time. We figure she’s been wandering loose for some time but she was quite happy to hang around at my wife’s co-worker’s house before we came and picked her up. Part of that, though, may be because we were having something of a heat wave until yesterday, and we’ve noticed she really doesn’t like to be out in the heat.

She’s got some very minor problem behaviors, the nature of which lead me to believe she may not have been an only dog at her former home. She likes to jump up on people but we’re working on breaking her of that. She will often respond to a whistle but when she gets far enough away only a loud, stern yell will bring her back. Out of habit I yell “Dog!” but it’s possible any word will do, including a name. We’ve taken to calling her Lucy

She appears to be at least half border collie, and someone suggested to my wife yesterday there might also be some lab blood. Despite the picture at left (pictures appeared in the original post), her ears really look more border-collie-like than lab-like.

My wife’s co-worker says he and his family asked around in the neighborhood where they found her to find out if anyone knew where she belongs, but had no luck. Yet unless she’s just a stocky dog she seems to be a little overweight, which wouldn’t suggest she’d been on her own for all that long. Yet she at least hadn’t been bathed in quite a while and I suspect her previous family either didn’t have much time for her or simply didn’t know how to discourage unwanted behaviors and teach such basic things as sit and stay. We hope she’s not too old to learn.

And yes, that does mean we expect to keep her.