Friday, April 29, 2011

Why Your Liver is Important...

Back in February when I was waiting for the results of Dingle's most recent liver tests I got an Email forward from my Grandpa (who is in his 90's and yes, uses the computer) about the importance of the liver.

Here are some of the pictures from that liver, which explain why the liver is important.

Again, these are from an Email forward - no copyright infringements intended:

So those are the reasons I am hoping that Dingle's next liver tests (May 3rd) come back okay.

Luckily Dingle doesn't drink... so that's one thing he's got going for him.

Dingle's very happy with his new sister, Razzleberry, and I want him to be carefree - with no daily liver meds. The eye drops are enough medications as-is!

Saturday, April 23, 2011


It's been a few months since I have last written. This time it hasn't been because I forgot. I needed some time to adjust to the craziness in my life - which has been full of changes the last 2 months or so.

But before we get into all of the changes, let's back track a bit.

Back in February Dingle went to the vet to get his liver re-tested. We had noticed elevations in his ALT back in September when he had his dental, but luckily the levels had gotten back within normal ranges after a month and a half on medication. Our plan, at the time, was to keep him off medication for a few months and see if those ranges could stay within normal without the liver detox meds.

The results from February's test came back and there were still elevations seen. Not extremely high that he needed medication again, but high enough that we were going to re-check in 2 months to keep a close eye on them.

Dingle was supposed to go on Tuesday, but we had to postpone. Last Friday morning I came home to dog puke everywhere. All over my couch, bed, floors... sooo much barf. He was fine (eating, playing, drinking, happy) when I got home but we decided to postpone the tests for two weeks just incase the massive vomit fest threw his system out of whack. Plus I didn't want to spend over $400 on extensive liver testing if there was a chance that his sickness or whatever made him puke (I think it was from chewing a stick that night) could lead to inaccurate results. Dingle's appointment is set for May 3rd.

Onto the changes...

Liver stuff isn't all that's been happening in Dingle's (and my) life. There've been a lot of changes since February. My 6.5 year relationship ended and Dingle went from having two doggy companions in the house to being by himself. He had Sasso (the pug/beagle mix) as a friend since Dingle was 5 months old. I didn't live with my (then) boyfriend at the time, but the dogs were always together when we were hanging out prior to living together.

I could tell that Dingle was very lonely, especially when I was at work and he was on his own for about 12 hours. As a side note I am kind of glad that his steriods (crotch meds) back in December made him pee so often that we needed to give him pee pads, because now being inside for 12 hours while I work he needs them. It wouldn't have been fair for me to expect him to hold 'it' all night if he needed to go.

The timing of the break-up 'worked out' I guess you could say in terms of Dingle getting a companion. A breeder I have known online (and met a few times), also named Michelle, had a litter of pom puppies. There were 2 in the litter. The breeder was planning on keeping 1 of them and at the time of my break up the second didn't have a concrete home in place. Dingle and I were chosen to be the new owners. Okay, maybe it was more like I was chosen.

On March 26th Dinglehopper and I welcomed the new puppy home.

Keeping with my past of crazy/unique/whatever pet names, I named the little girl Razzleberry.

Meet Razzleberry:

Or I guess I should have said "Meet Razzleberry... what you can see of her".

Here is Dingle with Razzle only hours after she came to her new home. Unfortunately it's a crappy Blackberry picture:

I was off for 10 days after I got Razzleberry to be home with her and Dingle.

For the first few days Dingle wasn't sure what to think. I honestly believe at first he didn't want much to do with her because he didn't know that she was his new sister... he might have been wondering if this dog was going to leave too (like his other two friends/my exes dogs).

I got the pom mostly for Dingle. I'd be lying if I said I didn't want a second pom (or third, fourth, etc) for a long time. But seeing Dingle so depressed and 'needy', I knew he needed someone. The first few days Razzle was home I was worried that I made the wrong decision, but luckily on day 3, I think it was, Dingle started playing with the puppy.

Now, weeks later, they are best buddies. Razzle looks up to Dinglehopper and follows him around the apartment. Speaking of apartment - two weeks after Razzle came home I moved to a new apartment for a 'fresh start', so to speak.

Of course I worried about Dingle adjusting to a new place with his failing vision, but things have been fine. A bonus is that I no longer have a 2 level apartment - no stairs for me to worry about with Dingle or the new pup.

Dingle is a good big brother and spends hours play fighting.

When Razzle came home she was just under 2.5 pounds. Dingle is anywhere between 8 and 11 depending on the vet visit and particular weigh-in. At first I was worried that Dingle would hurt her, by accident, while playing. Now I'm not. She's one tough pup and she can hold her own. She clamps onto Dingle's face, bites him, etc. and he has never once gotten aggressive with her. He loves his sister.

Here's a video of them wrestling in one of the many dog beds that fill my apartment. It's not a particularly interesting video, just a few minutes of them doing what they do best. Dingle is making the high pitched noises, Razzle the Gremlin-like ones.

Razzle loves food more than anything in the world. I've been feeding Dingle on my bed (not the best idea, but whatever) and guess what the newly 3 pound Razzle did two days ago? Took a flying leap onto the bed for Dingle's food. I was shocked, even though my lovely Ikea bedframe isn't that high off the ground. But I'm not impressed with her newly aquired skill because being able to get on the bed means the possibility of falling off.

Luckily Razzle is in an exercise pen when not supervised, including when I'm at work. Now that we are somewhat settled in to our new home after the April 9th move we are in a routine. When I work they sleep at night, have a few hours of playtime when I get home and then we all sleep.

That's been the last few months in a nutshell. Remember, life can change so quickly...