Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Kennel Call

Today was a kennel call day! Instead of making multiple trips to the office, my vet fits in a kennel call between his farm visits nearby. It is so much easier for me, and less stressful for the dogs. I just grab them from their kennels, ply them with treats and they are back in a flash not even knowing they just received a poke in the butt! Really so much more efficient and even safer for the dogs, since they don't have to hang out in a waiting room and be exposed to sick animals. Or oblivious owners who think a flexi lead entitles their dog to make contact with everyone else within reach.

I am so lucky to have two wonderful vets to count on. Dr Jay Peters at Countryside has been a wonderful partner in my dog endeavors here. I often contact him to bounce off questions about vet treatments and new discoveries, and as a vet he treats me with respect and as a partner in treatment, as well. I trust him to listen, and to explain to me his choices and decisions and he allows me to weigh the options without being condescending. He is just a great guy, and has an absolute love of the animals he treats. I highly recommend him to anyone in this area.

The other vet that I use is Dr. Strickfaden in DePere, for holistic treatment. She helped with Ali when he was naked, and Jinx with her cancer. She has worked with a number of dog owners that I know. Her talents and interest are unique in that area and I am fortunate that I have those options available to me. Sometimes it helps to think outside the box.

Today was a kennel call day. The thing about fitting in amongst farm visits is that you must be flexible. Things come up on farms! So, even though we aimed for 1-2 pm, the visit actually took place after 4 pm. The dogs were the lucky ones with this arrangment, since I spent the afternoon at the kennel building, grooming and playing with dogs. They were oblivious to any appointment schedule and thought it was all about them! Ali spent his time playing with his monkey fist balls, tugging and swapping one for the other. Ridley had a turn at working for treats and we started shaping her head position walking between my legs. Recalls and spins in both directions and a couple attempts at the down position. She did move into it with a slight assist of pressure on her rump. We ended with the bite pillow play and she was quite frustrated because everytime she put her mouth on it but did not bite down, I snatched it away from her. Finally, she got the picture and gripped hard, for which she was rewarded with more tug play. Next time I will put Muffi's new sleeve leash on it so I can get my dog back!! Cooper practiced his obedience work, as well. A few dogs received dremel pedicures and grooming. Ridley thought she needed to protect me from Dr. Jay upon his arrival and woof woofed at him in quite a serious manner for a puppy, but decided he wasn't so bad after all when I gave him treats. Jinx rode up in the van and also took her turn in the building, doing a little heeling, positions and some tug play. Needless to say, she thought she was very special! And, of course, she is!

It sure felt good to be able to train dogs again like that! My dogs are happy and tired and so am I.