sasha_feather: horses grazing on a hill with thunderheads (horses and lightning)
DSCF3746

[Abbie, a black greyhound with a gray face, looking alert. She has a dusky pink bowtie around her neck.]
sasha_feather: Retro-style poster of skier on pluto.   (Default)
*I'm trying out lowering my topomax dose from 75 mg to 50.

*The weather is cooler thank goodness.

*I survived a large family gathering over Labor Day.

*I called Building inspection for city of Madison; a guy is coming tomorrow to look at the AC unit.

*Forgot to link it here-- I wrote a blog post at WordPress about working on anti-harassment for WisCon; in response to Jim Hine's io9 article. He RTed it so it got a fair number of hits!
https://accessthis.wordpress.com/2016/09/01/not-looking-away-a-follow-up-to-jim-hines-article/

*I'm reading a long DA:I fanfic called "Stuck in the Puzzle". I don't know this fandom at all, but the fic is really good so far.

*New photos of the dog:
https://www.flickr.com/photos/sasha_feather/
sasha_feather: white woman in space suit (Astronaut)
Flat Out Bolli (her racing name) hails from Mobile, Alabama originally. She is a small black Greyhound with some white on her. She has a cowlick on her neck that makes it seem like she has a mohawk. She will be 3 in December. She is super chill and is already napping on the rug on the living room floor. She is interested in toys.

I plan on changing her name; I don't really like "Bolli" as a nickname. Taking name suggestions in comments!

Photo Album at Flickr
sasha_feather: neat looking overcoat (coat)
Sorcha is still whining incessantly. I see from my journal that this has been going on for more than a month -- probably more like six weeks. I'm taking her back to the vet on Wednesday to get her thyroid levels checked.

Other things we've tried:
I moved my bed so she can see me better from my crate.
I turned a night light on overnight.
Sitting with her on the couch to watch TV and movies. Three feet away in my chair isn't close enough-- I have to be like, touching and petting her to stop her whining. And I can't type with her on the couch because she paws at the screen and keyboard.
Distracting with treats.
A thundershirt. (Had to take a break from the shirt today because I may have left it on too long yesterday.)

The worst is when I try to lie down for a nap and she won't let me sleep.

I posted on the Greyhound bulletin board-- run by the rescue group-- asking for advice. So far, no help.

She does not seem to be in pain, not that I can tell. She still runs hard at the park, some days, and still hops in and out of the car, walks fine, etc. It seems more like anxiety, but that strange thing it how it started relatively recently.

Any ideas??
sasha_feather: dog looking over a valley (dog and landscape)
Last year we didn't need dog boots; but this year has been much colder.

The first pair we tried were the only ones in stock at a pet supply warehouse, and turned out to be a total piece of crap product. They were similar to this "fashion" boot and dissolved after one go-round at the park. (I did like the cord tightening design). I returned them for store credit.

Next we tried Muttluks. These do seem to be a good product, but they don't stay on Sorcha's feet. It's possible we have the wrong size, I suppose, but I think the real problem is just that she runs really hard at the park and they fly off. Plus she doesn't have much fur for the boot to grab onto (little friction). So we lost one boot within the first week; it's buried somewhere in the snow. I tried affixing rubber bands on but that still doesn't help. Some people recommended putting on vet wrap around her ankles before each trip to the dog park, which I haven't tried, because it seems like too much work.

Next I tried the rubber balloon style PAWZ. These are made to be disposable after a few uses, and they have to be since the dog's claws pierce the rubber. They offer a barrier to salt and water, but no insulation from the cold (and it's been seriously cold here). They take three hands to put on-- two to stretch the rubber and hold the boot, one to hold and position the dog's paw. They also come off when my dog runs. The package of 12 didn't last all that long, and to keep buying them all winter is not a good financial choice for me.

Next, at the recommendation of my local independent pet product seller, I bought some "Ultra Paws" boots. These are "guaranteed to stay on" (I'm skeptical). They are much easier to put on, and probably would work well for most dogs. However, my dog, a greyhound, has really high toes. I tried them just on her back feet today and after a pretty long run/walk at the park, she had scraped bloody her two middle back toes from rubbing them on the boots. I plan on returning them.

I would rate the Muttluks highest out of all of these, but I am still unsatisfied and am unsure how to protect my dog's feet from the cold. I know that Greyhound-specific products exist, and I may try those.
sasha_feather: ken watanbe with a horse and dog (ken wantanbe with pets)
First, a brief me-health update: I completely forgot to give myself my shots this week. I even forgot to pick up my Enbrel from the pharmacy. I only remembered just now because my knee started hurting. I really don't like forgetting things. I am also getting PT again, for my shoulder.

Second, Sorcha-health update. Twice on Sunday her back legs sort of gave out briefly and she staggered and caught herself. It looked like a drunken stumble. This was alarming and I took her to the vet the next day. The vet said she has a lack of reflexes in her hind legs. They offered me a referral to a doggie neurologist which I said I would think about. It doesn't seem that they did any blood work, which I may call back and request. It looks the medical term for this symptom is "ataxia". While she normally has tremors in her hind legs, they seem to be more pronounced lately, and happen while she is walking, not just while she is standing.

----

Third, Reading Wednesday!

I am Currently Reading

Far From the Tree by Andrew Solomon.

Chapter One was definitely the slowest and densest. Still, I don't think I will finish this book before it's due at the library. It is also heavy and hard to carry around. I may purchase the e-book. This is not an activist book. It's chiefly about parenting and families. It's still quite good and wrestles with a lot of identity issues that I find fascinating. In general it includes a lot of first-hand accounts of parents and children.

Chapter 2: Deaf. A nice overview of D/deaf history and cultures, and the difficulties therein. The politics of this world are really complicated and fraught, and while they make some people's lives profoundly better, the politics can also stand in the way for others. A dense chapter with a lot of information.

Chapter 3: Dwarf. I definitely learned things in this chapter. One of the issues brought up is that this identity is considered humorous to the wider culture.

Chapter 4: Down's Syndrome. Briefly talks about institutionalization, independence, and mainstream vs. special education.

Onto the next chapter, Autism!

I am also reading:

Tangles by Sarah Leavitt. Graphic memoir. I love this so far. It's a funny and heartbreaking account of her mother's Alzheimer's disease.

I recently finished

I love Led Zeppelin by Ellen Forney. I think she is my favorite graphic writer/artist! This book is oversized and NSFW. Includes a handy how-to section, collaborations, and misc. comics. Interesting and fun.
sasha_feather: ken watanbe with a horse and dog (ken wantanbe with pets)
I went to the park fairly early this AM. I don't know why I got up so early!

When I walked in, a man warned me and some other folks, "Don't go into that corner," (gesturing), "there are some abandoned dogs and a Pitt Bull attacking other dogs...." he rambled a bit and I couldn't understand entirely what he was getting at or why I should avoid the corner. Another lady almost got in a fight with him, accusing him of Pitt Bull prejudice (lolz). He said Animal Control had already been called.

Anyways, I am the sort of person who will go directly to the corner I'm advised to avoid by a slightly incoherent stranger, because I am curious and concerned. Indeed there were two dogs there: a small, white, shy dog that was perhaps a Terrier of some kind, and a very large un-neutered male brindle Pit Bill, limping a bit, who was super sweet and friendly. Attacking other dogs? Huh. He limped up to me for an ear scratch, then returned to the gate to whine pitifully. It broke my heart.

I just could NOT leave those dogs there alone. Other people went by and said "That's a shame," then walked on, when I told them. But I waited for twenty minutes or so with them. One other woman stopped to make sure they were OK. Me and Sorcha greeted the van with the woman from animal control, watched her catch the dogs, and I helped lift the big Pitt Bull into his crate.

They have gone to the Humane Society. I hope they either return home or find nice new homes! They were sweet.
sasha_feather: beautiful gray horse. (majestic horse)
In the GPA newsletter, there's a link to the site greyhound-data.com, where I found this data on my dog:

She ran in 84 races between 2005-2007
She won 19 of them
8 offspring are listed, and they all appear to be from the same litter, born May 2008. I don't know if she had other puppies or not. She came my way in early 2012, so what she was doing in between there is a mystery to me.

Sorcha (SE's Double Take) was born 21 Dec 2003.

my dog

Mar. 25th, 2013 04:33 pm
sasha_feather: ken watanbe with a horse and dog (ken wantanbe with pets)
Here is another cute picture of my dog, which is reminiscent of that luck dragon in the Never Ending Story.

cut for photo )

Once I get approved for the dog park email list, I'm going to send this note about my dog getting bitten today.

angry note )
sasha_feather: Retro-style poster of skier on pluto.   (Default)
Does anyone have advice for how to get my dog out of her crate? Treats are not working (turkey and cheese). Usually if I sit around and wait she comes out eventually, but she hasn't been out to do her business since last night!! This problem seems to have gotten worse since it got cold out. Climbing in and attaching her leash and then pulling on it doesn't really work and causes her to yelp. Singing her name/calling her hasn't worked today.

I am going to lay down for a bit: it seems like when I take a nap, that is when she whines to wake me up and wants to go out.

more love

Dec. 18th, 2012 11:14 pm
sasha_feather: dog looking over a valley (dog and landscape)
Last year [personal profile] thefourthvine posted a big poll asking "what would improve your life in 2012"? I clicked "more love."

I'm pleased to say that my wish came true. In April I adopted my dog Sorcha, and in late November I started dating someone. I also get a lot of love and support from my family and friends, and have been feeling that lately. My heart has grown.

I think for 2013 I will wish/ask the universe for more money and/or financial stability.

Sorcha had a mishap at the dog park yesterday. We were walking in the dark (normal for work days). She was running and must have hit a hole or something; I heard a loud barking noise and turned my flashlight to see her stumble and fall. After that she wanted to leave, and when I got back into the light at home I saw that she had a cut on her leg, and basically a black eye.

I took a photo of her poor little face. She got some doggie aspirin in cheese, antibiotic cream for the cut on her leg, and a bandage.

She is doing much better today and went back to the park for a nice frolic. She seems to be feeling fine.

My dad and I were discussing dogs via email and he wrote, about their Border Collie:
"Tegan managed to get too close to Tiki [one of the family horses] and got kicked. Just caught her above her eye, enough to cut and bleed. Looks like it’s healing. That’s how close she came to being not a dog. Maybe that’ll teach her to be more careful."

I love my dad's emails, they are really funny.
sasha_feather: horses grazing on a hill with thunderheads (horses and lightning)
Before I forget! When I went to have my blood drawn in the hospital yesterday, I remarked on how much I liked the lights to the phlebotomist. She said she liked them too because she gets bad headaches and they reduce the glare.

The lights shone upwards onto a piece of white fabric that was stretched out like a baby bouncer. From there it reflected into the two blood-draw bays on either side of the barrier. It was all reflected light that didn't shine directly into anyone's eyes; it was bright but diffuse.

Wonderful.

---

My elbows are sore today! Bonus. I don't feel like I am talking enough lately, and I am pretty upset about my joints hurting, so I am going to be writing more here.

---

Someone today (my CST) asked me if I had plans for the long weekend. I don't really-- I'm pretty broke. I'll probably just watch Warehouse 13 and go to the dog park, maybe try to get some things crossed off my to-do list. When I told her I go to the dog park every day, she said, "when I'm reincarnated I want to come back as one of your pets." :D

Dog update

May. 2nd, 2012 07:39 pm
sasha_feather: Horse Patronus from Harry Potter (patronus)
Sorcha and I go to the dog park every day. She is pretty timid and likes it best when there are not a lot of other dogs there. She also likes it when she has multiple people paying attention to her. Today was the Best! Day! Ever! because we met another Greyhound. The other dog is called Zeebee and is a brindle. A young couple are her humans and they've had her for a bit over a year. The dogs ran together and then we walked a lap around the park. Sorcha seemed much more secure having another greyhound and several humans around her. She ran quite a bit and smiled a lot. We also talked to a guy and his dog that we met there the other day, and an older couple who used to have a Greyhound, so she got lots of attention.

I took a couple of rather bad photos and posted them here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/sasha_feather

It was very hot and bright out today. My browser widget says it's still 74 degrees F! Now Sorcha is on the sofa with me, laying on my feet.

It's nice; even when I come home from work feeling like crap, I go for a walk with the dog and I feel better. I also talk to all kinds of people when I am walking her. I've met some neighbors with dogs, for instance, and people at the park. I talked to some Hispanic guys at the soccer fields yesterday and I think one of them had a prison or gang tattoo on his face (something by his eye? lol I'm so innocent). My roommate's boyfriend talks to me a lot more now that the dog is around. Dogs get people to talk, even me.
sasha_feather: Simon from Firefly, laughing (Simon)
There were hardly any dogs at the park today in the late morning when we went, so I decided to let Sorcha off the leash. She did great! She walked beside me for a little bit, and then when she saw other dogs she galloped off to them. She is really beautiful when she runs. She did come back to me which I was relieved about. She snapped and growled at the other dogs when they sniffed at her, but the other dog owner was like, "Oh, she's just putting them in their place." And Sorcha cozied up to that woman and wanted to get pet. I think Sorcha likes people more than other dogs. This woman was like, "Are all Greyhounds *so soft*??" I said I didn't know. It's true her coat feels like rabbit fur.

We also went to the vet for a quick check-up paid for by GPA. This is called a CVI and is required by state law to make sure I'm not getting a puppy mill dog apparently. Even though she's 8. She weight about 59 pounds. It's hard to imagine this couch-loving, people-loving dog in a big barn in a crate all day long. She is napping right now, stretched out on the sofa in "roach pose".
sasha_feather: ken watanbe with a horse and dog (ken wantanbe with pets)
I think I've settled on Sorcha. I go back and forth between pronouncing it as it looks ("Sor-cha-cha-cha") and like "Sor-ka".

We went to the dog park again and she growled/snapped at almost every dog there except for the Whippet. I suspect that she was nervous and overstimulated. Also, she was on leash. She does well with the two neighbor dogs who are very gentle. We also met the neighbor cat through the door, and the cat spat at her and clawed her ear! Oh no! She is now sleeping on the couch and laying on the Papazzan chair.

Sorka doing "roach pose"

Here she is doing "roach pose"-- on her back with all four feet in the air.

Sorcha is 8 years old. She was a racer for a few years, I think in Dubuque Iowa, and then she had puppies. Greyhounds can live 12 to 15 years or so.

dog!

Apr. 20th, 2012 10:02 pm
sasha_feather: ken watanbe with a horse and dog (ken wantanbe with pets)
My life feels so much more right now that I have a dog. She was dropped off at my house at about 7:45 this evening. Her name is Susie but that is probably going to change. Thorin Oakenshield? Neko? Feel free to make suggestions.

SE's Double Take aka Susie

A nearly all-white greyhound sleeping on the grass. She has a little light brown (fawn) color on one ear. This photo is from the adoption folks.

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