Thursday, September 8, 2011

Charlie's Story: Rally Competition

What a whirlwind couple of weeks!  Up before the roosters and bleary eyed for television interviews, then off to the Lexington Kennel Club dog show for my first ever obedience rally competition.  Sleep was becoming a precious commodity for a busy brown dog on the go.  Bill Bryant, Lee Cruse (who referred to me as a mutt), Stacy Ellisson ( my favorite ) and Kristi Runyon were welcoming and happy to have me and my new four legged friends on the set.  Bonnie was a master spokesperson, giving first rate interviews with each station.

Was it ever hot for the first three days of the competition!  This little brown dog absorbs all the sunlight.  Mom had to keep me iced down to prevent overheating.  My first two days I posted a perfect 100 score on the course!  By day three, I was wearing down and had a minor bobble, posting a 98.  But it was a sweep, winning all three days against the pure breeds.  This completed my novice title!  I am now officially Charlie Chip, RN ( Rally Novice ). 

Day four brought a tough decision.  I could continue to compete at the same level or move up into the advanced level, off leash.  Mom (with prodding from Dad ) decided to move me onward since my performance was stellar.  Boy was she nervous.  Advance adds harder maneuvers, jumping and is off leash. (boy could I have some fun with that! ) I’ll admit we needed work on some of the advance maneuvers and she drilled me hard that night!  “Team Charlie” showed up the next morning ( t-shirts in place ) to give emotional support.  Needless to say, I performed like a pro and posted a 96, thus earning the first rally advanced leg of my title.  Why would they doubt me?

I’m just glad to have the last few days to SLEEP!  I have been blessed to have great friends following me and my story.  I will continue onward toward my advanced, then an excellent rally title.  A huge accomplishment for this little All American dog!

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde

      I was adjusting to life without a cat better than I expected.  Mo and Tuff died early 2010 about 3 months apart.  It was very quiet in our house without our cats even though we have 3 dogs.  Then one day my husband decided that we needed the cutest little black kitten with no tail.  He was sweet for approximately 3 days then the teeth and claws became his weapons.  He would constantly stalk and attack our feet, toes and bare legs, climbing them whenever possible with screams following from our end.  Anytime we would hold him he would bite us quite hard for such a little guy.  Only Sophie, one of our chihuahuas, could play with him.  She loves him and protects him from the other dogs, but she can't provide the discipline that he needs from another cat.

So the dreaded day came where I had to take my own advice that I so frequently gave out at the clinic.
"What do I do with a kitten that is very play aggressive?" they say
"Get another cat of course, it will help them get the extra energy out" I say so non-chalantly to those clients.

     Upon our research of the surrounding shelters and our daughter's recent adoption of a shelter cat, we chose Woodford Humane Society.  They had a program called 60 cats in 60 days where the cats that had been at the shelter the longest were adopted out to approved homes with the adoption fee waived.  My daughter's cat is a really sweet girl that fit right in to her 2 cat, 1 puppy household.  We thought we'd give it a try.  My husband went in search of one we had seen online.  The shelter worker said unfortunately she would probably not be a good match with a kitten.  She recommended a 4 year old male named Doakes.  He had been at the shelter since April 2010.  He's a large, black cat with beautiful green eyes.  He called me and discussed the recommendation and we settled on him since he would be a better fit.

     When Doakes got to our home he smacked our cattle dog in her face 3 times and glared at her until she walked away.  He settled right in to life in our home in about an hour.  Our kitten was unsure of him the first night, but the next day they were big buddies.  It's still too soon to see if the kitten's attitude will be adjusted but our fingers are crossed.  I think Doakes is enjoying his new home.  He sleeps with us, along with Sophie who is not liking the company.  The cats are such opposite personalities that we have decided on the names - Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.  I think by reading you know which is which.  Wish us luck.  I think we are going to need it.


Thursday, August 25, 2011

What's a Girl to Do? Charlie's Story...

Livin' the good life!

Now, let me tell you, I have some attitude. I’ve had to!  Things started a little rocky and well, here I am ready to compete in my first dog show.  Excited and nervous, all at the same time.  But, let me start at the beginning.

I was not planned.  But I was here with my seven siblings.  When we were old enough, all of my littermates were adopted. All but me.  I put on my best manners and loved up to anyone who would listen, but to no avail.  At last, a family took me home to live with them.  Life was good.  I had children to shower with all kinds of kisses!  But one day, my family forgot I was outside when they left the house.  It was a hot July day and I was snoozing in the only cool spot I could find, under the car.  I woke up with my legs in excruciating pain!  What happened!?  My legs were the victim of ‘tire poisoning’.  Run over in my own driveway.  My family rushed me to the Animal Clinic in Wilmore.  I was not afraid.  I had kisses to pass along to my girl who was crying as she hugged me.  How could I help her?  I tried wagging my tail and licking her tears. Then they left me. 

I did not know it then, but I was to start a new life with a new family.  The staff at the Animal Clinics of Wilmore and Equestrian Woods took me under their wing and vowed to fix me.  Severely injured, with no guarantee I could recover from five breaks in my legs and pelvis, I continued to keep my positive attitude, passing out kisses freely and never stopped waging my tail!

Three surgeries later, I was hobbled by a hip to toe cast and struggling to accomplish the routine of daily life.  I was young though, and my bones were still growing and healed quickly.  Since my recovery required close daily supervision, I began to spend weekends at Dr. Carl’s house.  My spirit never waivered and by November, I had ingratiated myself to Dr. Carl, but more importantly to my new dad. I knew it was a done deal when I took my first road trip to the beach.
Lazy dog day at my wonderful home!

My new life!  I’m told I am a very lucky little dog. My new name was Charlie Chip, after Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.  Able to walk, run and jump after all I have been through!  I have two goldens to mother and four cats to herd.  Mom even takes me running at the farm with Chip, our horse.  I am a diligent chaser of deer, rabbits, chipmunks, and any bird wandering into my path.  But, I was missing my desire to help someone.  So, when clinic staffers participated in obedience classes, I enthusiastically signed on as Brandi’s partner!  Best Friends Obedience hosted us for six wonderful weeks of training and I had so much fun!  I graduated on the first try!  That is when Mom had her ‘aha’ moment and our training for Rally obedience began.  We have spent many hours training and our first show is next week.

Practicing my show face!

I am unique at the AKC sanctioned Bluegrass Classic dog show as this is only the second year that mixed breed dogs are able to compete.  That’s me, a mixed breed all American dog!  Bonnie, acting as my press agent, has me scheduled for four television appearances:  A local celebrity! Stay tuned for updates about our show ring experience.

One thing for sure, none of this would have been possible without every person who has touched my life.  I know now how blessed my life has been.

Friday, August 12, 2011

A Day in the Life of a Horse Doctor!

Hi, everyone, Jordan here! Although many of you may not know me, I worked at Animal Clinic at Equestrian Woods and Wilmore throughout high school and college. I’m in vet school now, and even though I want to be a horse vet after I graduate I still love working at the clinic on Saturdays.
As pet owners and caretakers, you all already know about the health problems a vet like Dr. Carl treats every day. I’ve spent the past summer working with an equine veterinarian, so I’m going to briefly tell you about a day in the life of a horse doctor!
The first stop of the day often involves ultrasounding mares to ensure that their pregnancies are progressing normally or to see when they are ready to visit the stallion. Some mares have trouble getting pregnant, so it’s a relief when the doctor finds a tiny fetus with a flickering heartbeat on the screen of the ultrasound machine.

The September thoroughbred yearling sales at Keeneland are fast approaching so it’s very important to keep the young horses at the peak of health and fitness. The veterinarian is often called to farms to suture lacerations, treat skin infections, radiograph hurt legs, and diagnose and treat various diseases. The yearlings entered in the sale must also have “survey” radiographs (over 30 films!) taken of their legs and joints. The x-rays will then be examined by veterinarians and prospective buyers for any problems in bone conformation.

Whether they are racehorses, polo ponies, or jumpers, horses may develop sore and inflamed joints and damaged cartilage as they age. One way to help keep these athletes comfortable and participating in their respective sports is by injecting the joints with medication to help relieve discomfort and improve joint function.

Though Lexington is the “horse capital of the world,” not all of our area equines are involved in racing, reproduction, and high-end competition. Many people keep horses for casual riding and their own enjoyment, and these horses need care just as your dogs and cats do. An equine vet frequently administers annual vaccinations, examines eye ulcers and stitches up lacerations, diagnoses allergies, takes x-rays of lame horses, and treats hoof abscesses and colic. While the patients may be 10 to 100 times larger than your average cat or dog, the goal of equine veterinary medicine is the same as that of companion animal medicine: to prevent illness, relieve suffering, and improve the quality of life of the wonderful animals around us!

Photo credits:
1.       Equine pregnancy ultrasound at 35 days:
2.       Keeneland September Sale:
4.       Carpal joint injection:

Friday, July 29, 2011

A Nightmare Night With a Post-Neuter Pooch...


It's 2:25 am, and Buddy, my Pit Bull mix, is standing at the side of my bed yelling at me, wanting me to help him onto the bed. He tries to jump up himself, but everytime he does, his e-collar catches the side of the bed, and he crashes back to the floor. I realize, if I am going to get any sleep, I'm going to have to lift him into bed. I crawl out of bed, half asleep, and hoist my 55 lb. dog into bed, thinking I will finally be able to rest. Wrong! Buddy then begins to "alligator roll" twisting and turning, pawing, crying and whining at his e-collar trying to get it off..and so my night continued.

I write to you today, in a sleep-walking state, to let you know that even the Veterinary Clinic staff have problems, lol. Buddy was neutered by Dr. Carl yesterday. I was a nervous wreck going into his surgery, we neuter animals every week, but it's different when it's your own baby. The surgery went off without a hitch, and then he woke up. Within the first 30 minutes of waking up, Buddy decided he needed one less stitch than Dr, Carl thought he did, this is where the e-collar enters the story. As soon as I placed an e-collar on him, he started thrashing around his cage, flipping over backwards, like it was the end of the world! I felt like such a mean mommy, and from the look he was giving me, I'm pretty sure he thought I was a mean mommy too!

To say that he hates his e-collar is an understatement. I keep telling him it's for his own good, but he doesn't want to hear that. But in the end, he will simply have to pout about it for a few days, because he has already shown what he will do if he can get to his incision... Buddy is about 5 years old now, I've had him about a year, he is my little rescue. I've loved him from the start, and he's been a great dog, but it's gonna be a long week!

Sorry Buddy, Mommy loves you!


Thursday, July 21, 2011

Piper Needs A Home

 I had just sat down on my couch after returning home from work when I heard an insistent meow. I stuck my head in the bedroom where my cats lounge and saw nothing out of the ordinary. They looked at me as if to say "What lady? We're trying to nap here!"  Thinking I might be hearing things, I sat back down to relax.
Again I heard a meow that refused to be ignored. Suddenly a little white face appeared in the kitchen windowsill. She begged me to come out and see her. When I stepped outside she quickly jumped down and weaved in and out of my legs purring loudly. My husband jokes that my first thought when I see an animal outdoors is that it must be hungry. True to form, I ran back inside and grabbed bowls of food and water. She quickly dug into the food, eating as fast as she could manage. She was extremely thin and it looked as if she had not received a solid meal in quite a while. She had no form of identification. I live in a fairly small neighborhood and I did not recognize her as a resident outdoor cat. I sat and watched her clean out her bowl and she appeared grateful when I gave her a refill. After she had her fill, she found a spot in the sun and lounged. I decided to leave her to her nap as I had adequately filled her belly. Later, when I peeked out the window and did not see her I assumed she was just passing through. She had a different plan. The next morning, there she was in the window ready to be acknowledged and of course fed. My indoor cats were visibly offended that I had offered this outsider the windowsill. As it now appeared that she was sticking close, my next step was to see if she had been implanted with a microchip. I packed her up in a carrier and brought her to the clinic. She was less than thrilled with the car ride, although I explained to her that she needed to comply if I was going to help her find a new home. No microchip was found. I knew that I was now charged with finding her a loving home. We moved forward with testing her for feline leukemia and FIV, both of which were negative. Dr Carl then spayed her and vaccinated her. After her spay procedure as I set up her cage for recovery I yelled to DeAnna that I needed some "paper" (newspaper) for the bottom of the kennel. She replied, "Who's Piper?" And so it was that my southern accent named that sweet white cat. I am now in the process of finding the perfect home for Piper. She is an affectionate cat that loves people and more specifically their laps. Do you or someone you know have room for her in your life? If so, please contact me at the clinic. (859) 224-1418


Saturday, July 16, 2011

Farewell Ramsey. You will be missed..

Yesterday was such a bittersweet day... We brought 3 new kittens into the world and lost an awesome cat as well.  As most of you know Ramsey had been sick for about 2 weeks. After numerous test and surgery we were convinced it was some type of cancer. Yesterday Ramsey let us know he was tired of the fight. As a family we decided it wasn't fair to him anymore.  After tests came back after his death it was confirmed that no matter what treatment was performed Ramsey wasn't going to make it. Goodbye Bam Bam, WE LOVE YOU.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Ramsey's Chemo Adventure

Tuesday afternoon Ramsey was started on chemotherapy. Although none of his tests have been conclusive all signs point to Lymphoma. Without treatment there is no hope, so we have to do something.  Tuesday seemed to be a great day for Ramsey. He was able to get out of his cage and walk to his room and get into bed.  Wednesday and today have not been good for Ramsey.  He's a bit down in spirits but that's to be expected from chemotherapy. He has an upper respiratory infection as well so he can't smell his food so he doesn't want to eat. He continues to collect more fluid on his abdomen, so hopefully the chemo will take affect soon and cut down on the amount of fluid collecting. 
Although he may be feeling the effects of chemo, we aren't giving up the fight. He continues to purr and tick his tail. Hopefully in a few days we can get the congestion under control and he can eat on his own again.  His next scheduled chemo treatment is Tuesday. Stay tuned for further updates.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Ramsey Singing The Blues

Update on Ramsey. Multiple tests came back inconclusive- all labs suggested surgery.  Yesterday was the day for the big surgery. Ramsey went under the knife to see if anything could be done.  Low and behold we opened him and his intestines were angry.  Unfortunately the big "C" word becomes higher on the list.  Biopsies were collected and were sent to lab for confirmation.  
I know this sounds morbid but we are hoping for Lymphoma verses Pancreatic Cancer.  If caught in time Lymphoma has a better success rate verses Pancreatic Cancer. 
- Singin' the Blues, Ramsey

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Ramsey's under the weather :(

One time or another, most of you have probably met our clinic cat, Ramsey. He is our little cross-eyed, "fanged" Siamese mix that likes to hang out at the front desk (usually grooming himself in inappropriate areas, while you're trying to check out ). As we were leaving the clinic last Friday, eager to begin our big 3 day holiday weekend, we noticed that Ramsey had not touched his breakfast from that morning. We begin to talk among ourselves, and everyone noted that they hadn't seen Ramsey out and about through the clinic that day, but he had been snuggled up in his kitty bed most of the day. Our clinic kitties had recently had a food change, so we concurred that maybe he had a sore tummy from this. We left for the day, all agreeing to pay special attention to Ramsey when we were in for our weekend duties.

Dr. Carl was the first one in Saturday. Ramsey had once again, not eaten, and was still acting puny. She started him on a medication for a queasy stomach. Sunday was DeAnna's day to check in our our kitties. When she arrived, she noticed that Ramey seemed to have taken a turn for the worse. He was given a few hundred milliliters of fluids and more medication. He was also started on a canned food, designed for cats having GI problems. DeAnna was able to coax him to eat a small amount of this. Monday, was my day to stop in. Based on DeAnna's description from the day before, Ramsey seemed to be feeling a little bit better however he did not appear to have eaten any food over night. I repeated his fluids and medication.

Tuesday morning, we were back open for business. With more staff on hand, we were able to collect a blood sample to send in to our lab for testing. We had results back that evening, and the results were unremarkable. We proceeded to take some radiographs, which revealed a large amount of fluid in his abdomen. At this time, the scary "C" word started creeping into Dr. Carl's mind, but we needed to know more.

Yesterday, DeAnna took Ramsey to Rood and Riddle to have an ultrasound performed. No tumors or abnormal masses were seen. The only thing significant was, once again, a large amount of fluid in his abdomen. We then proceeded to "tap" the fluid to take a peak at it under the microscope. What we saw was not pretty. Large amounts of abnormal, irregular cells were present, the scary "C" word was looking more like a possibility.

Today, we did another "tap" on Ramsey's abdomen and submitted the fluid to Antech (our lab) for analysis by a pathologist. So at this point, we are sitting and waiting for the results. On the upside, Ramsey does seem to be feeling a little bit better today, and has even eaten a few bites of food. Ramsey, or Bammers as we all affectionately call him, is a special part of our clinic! We will be fighting for this little guys health and hopefully have him around much longer! We will keep everyone updated on his health as we learn more! 


Friday, July 1, 2011

Look at us! We're blogging :)

Welcome to our Blog!!! We try to stay up-to-date on the latest "techno" stuff, so we've decided to become Bloggers!!! If you are a client here, you know that we have lots to say, lol!!! This Blog gives us a venue to express ourselves! Periodically, different staff members will log on to discuss whatever is on their mind! We always have great stories to share: sometimes touching, sometimes funny, sometimes sad... :(

We hope you find our Blog informative and entertaining!!! If you are not already following us on Facebook and Twitter, look us up!!! Until Later...Tabitha, LVT