Big Pupi and I did some Naughty Boys! on Friday night. We somehow managed to get our nosey schnozzles and grabby paws up onto the kitchen island (Duh, humans. I'm a tall boy.) and help ourselves to a fully-open, partially-eaten bag of Tostitos chips. By the time our humans came home from some Place of Feasting that the canines were not invited to, they found this:And two boys whose tummies were sad like this:
If you've been reading this blog for a while now, a little alarm should be going off in your heads... it sure as poobles was going off in our stomachs. Those chips are made of corn. Corn is the numero uno no-no in this place, and it only took moments before Big Pupi and I found out why.
Enter the Volcano Duo. Erupting from all ends through all hours of the night.
Dudes. If you're going to vomit, projectile is the only way to go. No joke. And if you're feeling queasy, I highly recommend seeking refuge on the human crate, sofa or upholstered arm chair. Your little bum should feel cushioned as you're blasting the stolen goods across the room from your mouth. I set new records and even I was surprised at my shooting skillz. I sent liquid across the sofa blankie, onto the sofa slip cover, soaking into the actual sofa fabric and into the cusion, then onto the wood floor and into the bed room across the hall. That room is carpeted.
Count: 6 surfaces.
Are you impressed? Mom was. The look of horror on her face said it all when she realized that I had cleared 12 feet to get the goods on the bedroom floor. I'm telling you. It was incredible.
I am incredible.
Big Pupi doesn't have talents equal to yours truly, so he just left piles on the sofa and the floor. That dorkus was polite enough to make a pooble mess out of the freshly fallen snow outside - a stain on the pristine powder so horrible that it sent passerby clamoring over plowed snow banks to get to the sidewalk on the other side. There weren't enough pooble baggies in the world to fix this.
I, The Great Poobler Extraordinaire Stanislaw, saved my bum explosion for the hallway outside our apartment. I walked as I went, often circling back to check on the progress and quality of my work. Excellent. As always. After painting the tile floor in a Pollock-esque masterpiece complete with paw prints (yes, I stepped in it), my people descended and destroyed my work with piles of paper towels and all manners of bleaches and disinfectants. Then I was similarly disinfected and brought back inside. Load after load of laundry was hauled away, and the apartment finally put back together.
At this point I was hungry.
And Big Pupi's tummy grumbled.
And in the cruelest twist of all, we were placed in our crates with nary a feast in sight. Empty bellies and hunger pangs. You'd think I would learn my lesson after my evening snack attack, and I assure you that I did.
Next time I'll go for the dip, too.
Learning valuable lessons,
Big Pupi was happy for breakfast:
Aw man. I was hungersome this morning! I got some boiled meat to soothe an angry tummy. I suppose corn chips should be taken off the menu... but they were so tasty and crunchy! I'm not sure if Stan and I learned any long-standing lessons from this little adventure.
As I'm sure your folks know, any time there is an extended period of vomiting and/or diarrhea there is an increased chance of the patient suffering from dehydration. Dehydration can be a very dangerous thing, and if it gets bad enough it can kill. There are ways to check for hydration levels and to help the body rehydrate, and we'll discuss some of those here.
The skin test: This is the least accurate way of measuring hydration but it's the easiest. Your person should lift the skin between your shoulder blades and let go, watching how quickly it drops back into place. If it snaps right back then you're good to go. If it sinks down slowly then you're in need of some fluids. The slower it moves the worse off you are, and if your skin remains aloft then it's doctor time, pronto.
The gum test: The more accurate option, the gum test is done by lifting your lip and having your human touch your gums. They should be nice and wet, but if you're dehydrated they will be tacky or sticky. A test for capillary refill should also be done, and it's easy - your person should press gently on your gum line, then remove their finger and count the seconds until the pink color comes back to your gums. Two seconds is ideal. Any longer and it's a sign of dehydration.
If you are suffering from tummy problems, your person suspects mild dehydration or if they are not able to get you to the vet right away, there are ways to help your body gain and retain fluids. If they suspect moderate or severe dehydration or if you are suffering from extremely frequent vomiting or diarrhea, then you need to see a doctor ASAP for intravenous fluids and medication to ease your symptoms.
Mixing up an electrolyte beverage is easy to do and can aid in re-hydrating a sick pup. But before we get into recipes we're going to explore why and how these electrolyte things work.
Electrolytes are ions, meaning that they are teeny tiny subatomic particles that carry a charge and are able to to conduct electricity. Regular table salt is an electrolyte. When it dissolves in water, its components split, becoming charged particles.
When dissolved in water, the molecule separates to become ions:
Na+ (Sodium) and Cl- (Chloride)
The Sodium ion has a positive electric charge and the Chloride ion has a negative charge.
Normally the kidneys are responsible for maintaining electrolyte levels in your bloodstream, but diarrhea and vomiting can create havoc with this delicate balance. An irritated bowel not only pulls and eliminates necessary fluids and electrolytes, but it also makes absorption of the water and salts extremely difficult. There are different kinds of transporters in the intestines that are responsible for absorbing salts and fluids. There are other transporters that bring in salts and sugars. This is why there is often glucose included in re-hydration drinks for humans, as it increases the efficiency of electrolyte and water absorption by appealing to the sugar/salt transporters. (Please note that sugar can exacerbate diarrhea, and it is not always necessary to include.)
Okay, so let's come up with a hypothetical situation here... Let's say that you're feeling pretty icky after having snarfeled down a bag of corn chips and the feast is ferociously making its way out of your bum. Your folks want to prevent any dehydration while your body rids itself of the offending food. They know that this is a temporary illness and you do not show any signs of moderate or severe dehydration. It's time to give your body a helping hand (or drink).
Our favorite recipe is super easy-
From the human grocery store, our people buy one can (about 2 cups) of beef broth, the kind with a moderate amount of salt and preferably not too many ingredients beyond "beef" and "water." Once at home, your folks can pour this can into a bowl or pitcher, then fill the can once more with filtered water and dump that in. The solution can be served in very small servings 1-2 times per hour - too much too quickly can really upset the tummy. If you're not in the mood to drink, the solution can be warmed slightly to increase the smell of the meaty tastiness. This solution does not include sugar, so if your tum is especially sensitive this may be the way to go.
If a trip to the store isn't possible, then a solution can be made using stuff your person probably has at home.
1 teaspoon salt
2-4 teaspoons sugar or honey
Boil the water and add the salt and sugar, stirring until dissolved. Let cool and give to drink in small portions frequently throughout the day (1-2 times per hour) as needed. This solution is also good for use on humans with sad tummies!
A 1/4 teaspoon baking soda (Sodium Bicarbonate) may be added to act as an antacid, and a slice or two of banana may be fed separately to get some Potassium (K+) in the mix.
That's all the learnin' for now, folks!