Saturday, September 24, 2011

Veggie Feastings and Happy Hearts

WHAZZUP??!! Two post in a week?? I'm on a roll!

I did something naughty, and I'd like to tell you all about it.

I broke into the human meat locker, that they like to call the "fridge." Mom doesn't know how, but I did it, and I am most pleased with my bad self. Mom keeps all my meatables on the bottom shelf of that wonderful machine... right at eye level for me and my brother. But I didn't take the meat. Didn't even touch it.

As it turns out, meat is not my most favorite feasting material.

Instead, I stretched my long and stretchy body all the way up to the tip top shelf, where I dug through a pile of vegetables, each snugged up in their own little bag. I picked my way through the pile, past the diakon radish, bypassing the carrots, ignoring the onions. Then I found it. The feasting of my desire.

The same thing that I am being all GoodBoySitStay for in this photo.
I am mildly obsessed with celery. It is my most favorite feasting ever. I drip droolies and beg the best begs whenever my mom takes it from the food box. It makes for the absolute BEST cold crunching feasting in the entire world.
What? Are you surprised?!? A meat-feasting beast like me totally digging on some green non-meat aisle material? Dude. Try it. It is AMAZING. And I'm pretty sure that something this good has to be made of meat even though it's green.

In fact, I've even got my brother eating it. He used to chew it to bits and spit it out, but even that stinkbutt has grown to love the crunch of fresh organic celery deliciousness.
Mom doesn't mind the daily feast snack either. She says that it helps to "speed things along" in the mornings when she needs to go to work. I think she's referring to how quickly I gobble down my veg. (By the way, I would like you to take note of the wonderful paper shreds that Big Pupi and I surprised mom with when she came home from the grocery store. She LOVES it when we greet her with thoughtful presents and decorations!)
In other news, mom got a call from the doggy doctor yesterday. My brother had some tests done on his ticker, and she got the results. Let me give you a little back story.
About 18 months ago, my brother was diagnosed with a heart murmur. It was a grade 1 (on a scale of 1–6, with 6 being valve failure). This is a very common ailment for beasts like us. As we age, the valve tissue can thicken, causing a murmur. It can be a progressive problem. But at stage 1, you don't do anything but keep an eye on it.

During our annual exam a few months ago, our new vet said it sounded like the disease had progressed to a stage 2. Not good. That's way too quick for mom's comfort. And given our hard-running lifestyle, heart health is a big concern. Big Pupi LIVES for our morning runs, and so mom thought it best to have a few more tests done.

Which brings me to his robo-dog naked pink chest panel.
Big Pupi spent the day at the doctor, (while I got to play at camp... SWEET), where they shaved his chest and took a gander at his ticker. Turns out that BP's blood mover does indeed have a leaky valve, but it is no where near a stage 2. Although there is some blood going back in to the heart, it is not enough to slow him down or even worry about at this point. My folks and doctor will keep an eye on it, but we don't need to taper down our runs or watch our exercise. She said that his resting heart rate is so low, and his resting breathing rate is slow, which all indicate a healthy heart and healthy body. Good news.

I was smiling (mostly because I get to continue on my morning fast hunts).
To make good news ever gooder, doctor said that BP's heart shows no signs of disfigurement or severe scarring from the heartworm that he had back when my mom first took him home. So overall, he gets an A+ on the old man health chart.
Ever since his first murmur diagnosis, mom changed up his supplements a bit. Now he gets a therapeutic dose of fish oil, at 2,000 mg per day instead of 1,000 (total of 240 mg DHA and 360 mg EPA). He's continued at 200iu Vitamin E every day to help metabolize the oil. Because antioxidants are really good for the cardiovascular and immune systems, he is given 500 mg Vitamin C, and about 300 mg of Coenzyme Q-10. CoQ10 has been shown in clinical trials to be beneficial to heart (and gum) tissue, and is also an antioxidant. Furthermore, CoQ10 is being studied for its cancer prevention benefits, which is something all senior dogs need to keep an eye out for.

BP has also shown some very slight signs of stiffness in his knees, so about 5 months ago mom started him on about 1,000 mg of Glucosamine daily. He gets the shellfish-free kind, because those kinds of fishes make him vomit for hours. After about 6 weeks on this supplement, he no longer shows any symptoms of arthritis. Once we're done with this bottle of Glucosamine, mom will move him to another shellfish-free kind that also has hyaluronic acid in it, as that is supposed to make the supplement work even better. We're both still on a pre-made greens mix with seaweed and alfalfa, and a Multi-B vitamin given a few times per week.

So... it sure sounds like a lot. But a couple of vitamins in each meal really isn't a big deal and we're HUGE believers that good nutrition is the BEST form of preventive medicine. Plus, vitamins cost WAY LESS cheese-money than vet bills.

Just a little food for thought from your beastly friends.

And I can promise you that we'll be thinking of our foods when we're out on our run tomorrow!

From your feasting friend,

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Hear It All From the Stanislaw

What's up bloggerinis?!
It's your long-lost pal, Stanislaw. Just chillin'. Being beastly. You know. The usual.
I've made the very intelligent decision to entertain you with the most spectacular photos of me (and mediocre ones of my brother), while I update you on our feastings and last few months. The photos have nothing to do with the post, except that Big Pupi and are playing with some sweet new toys that look like meatables. Awesome.
As you can imagine, a whole huge bunch of things have happened since I last wrote to you. For starters, our new doctor says that my brother is probably TEN YEARS OLD instead of the assumed 8. HA HA. Awesome. I always knew he was a grumpy old man! Aside from that revelation, and almost completely losing his hearing in old-man style, Big Pupi is fit as a fiddle (I have no idea what that means). We continue on our fast hunts in the early mornings and he outruns both my mom and me on the last mile. Don't tell anyone that.
Now for news about me! I have been completely weaned off my Prozac and have made enormous improvements on my OCD, twitching and other wacky behaviors. In the past YEAR, I've only had ONE bad episode of screaming and twitching and that's it!! It used to happen every single day before my medicine. Although I will never be a "normal" dog, I am now living a very comfortable and healthy life. And "normal" is boring anyway. Right?
With those minor updates, let me tell you what's been keeping my humans from posting for me.
You see, there's this big scary monster called Economy. This Economy beast did some major damage to my mom's industry in our last city. After a bit of struggle, mom got a job in another city that was too good to be true and she just couldn't turn it down. My dad, on the other hand, already had a good job and is too far through law school to transfer. Dad works full time, goes to school straight from work, and then comes home to homework every night until 2am. While my mom works very long hours, she's allowed to bring her work home with her at night. And so, Big Pupi and I moved down south with our mom.

It's not uncommon for mom's job to have her working until 10 or 11 at night (advertising... sheesh!). Because The Stanislaw requires much attentions and affections, she doesn't always have a lot of time or energies to keep up with my blog. But that doesn't mean that we're not reading yours. I promise that we are! It just means that I'm living life on the down-low for a while.

I'd totally like to bite this Economy monster in the bum. HARD.

But dad is done with school in May, and he's at the very top of his class. I can't wait to be a family again soon!! Mom says that we are making sacrifices so that we can "invest in our future" right now. All I have to say is that this dang "future" better have a squirrel farm for me in there somewhere.

So that's the Happenings with your friend Stanislaw. We're still feasting raw, running hard, and living life all beastly-like.

We've missed you!