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Harry Update

5 Jun

Back on Feb 1, I did a post about our family pet, Harry.  Wow, have we had our ups and downs since then.

©2017 Cathy Craig

As mentioned before, Harry seems to have an acquired brain injury – most likely a tumour, the only sure way to tell is a CT scan and while we live a full life, we really don’t have the spare cash to spend on a scan that might give a diagnosis, especially as a cure is unlikely.

On top of his brain issues, as the weather has gotten cooler it seems that our poor baby has been beaten rather savagely with the arthritis stick.  Of course the symptoms didn’t present as normal at the start, it looked like he had a gut issue.  After a full set of blood work and an ultrasound we found that all his organs are functioning well, but he has arthritis around his hindquarters.

So we move forward and treat the symptoms.  This involved trialling drugs to find what would help him, some are not all that good to be on long term, but it was a case of make our pet comfortable, then worry about the long term.   I asked about using essential oils as part of this process, while the vet didn’t say no, he said he had no expertise in that area (give him credit, he didn’t actually roll his eyes at me).

As I believe that there is more to using essential oils for health support than just how nice they smell I did some research and found Dr Roark and asked for some help.

Unfortunately between Feb and May 1 Harry’s symptoms progressed rapidly.  So rapidly that on May 1 the vet told us our beloved 14yo dog was palliative.  That they would be there for us, we just had to call.  We would know when the time was right to euthanise.

The week starting 8 May I called the vet, twice, for some advice on his arthritis.  Unfortunately the vet did not return my calls.  I was beside myself.  We had finally hit on a drug regime that was supporting his brain issues/anxiety/dementia but he was whimpering from arthritis pain.  Was that time here?

On the way home from work an ad came on the radio for a holistic vet.  I called and made an appointment, I wasn’t convinced that we had to ‘make the call’ on Harry just yet, but was also feeling disappointed that the promised support did not include a return phone call (even if it was to say we have to see you again).

Dr Boersma and his team have been amazing.  We have utilised pharmaceutical drug therapy, traditional herbal therapy, PEMF and massage with essential oils.

While we accept that our baby is 14yo and is in his twilight years,  however, we are not sitting here wondering if we need to euthanise our baby.  He still has his bad days, I can tell when snow is on the way by how uncomfortable Harry is, but I can also help him and I’m not frowned upon by his healthcare provider for wanting to explore alternative therapies.

©2017 Cathy Craig

Exploring home after a visit to the groomers today

So, if you have a pet dog who is also in need of joint pain support, don’t dismiss the ‘hippy’ treatments.  Ok, so massaging essential oils does mean that my cute fluffy white dog, becomes a cute oily white dog but the difference to his levels of comfort are noticeable and encouraging.

Dr Roark suggested I try massaging with a 3-4% dilution of doTERRA’s massage blend (Aroma Touch) and for pain relief to use diluted Lemongrass.  Both Dr Roark and Dr Boersma also suggested Frankincense for supporting his brain issues.

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What I have noticed with the massage is –  it works!  I’ve tried a straight massage and while that makes Harry happy at the time, when I stop he returns to his pacing and inability to settle.  When I massage with the oils the relief is noticeable.  Within 5 minutes he can settle, he lies down and has a nap.

©2017 Cathy Craig

Just had a massage and I’m ready for a nap. Take away that camera and leave me to sleep please.

I have also noticed that a fatty growth he has on his neck has reduced.  Yes, it is just a fatty growth, a needle biopsy was done by the first vet.  I suspect that the Frankincense may be a contributor to it’s reduction, as it’s nearest to where I rub that oil.

 

In the moment

4 Feb

Tonights sunset had some nice colour, so I headed out for a photo.  I never seem to tire from taking sunset photos.©2017 Cathy Craig

While I was out on the balcony, one of our cats ‘Buttons’ came to investigate.  Of course the moment I started focussing the camera on her, she came towards me.  I feel lucky to have been quick enough to compose this one.

©2017 Cathy Craig

Vet Visit

1 Feb

Our fur baby Harry had a trip to the Doc today.  It appears he spent the day yesterday licking his paw.

While at there we asked for his eye sight to be tested as we have noticed a sharp decline in the last 3 months.

Verdict?

Paw – Sedation and exploration of his paw didn’t find any foreign bodies.  Antibiotics should help it heal and lets check in a week.

Eye Sight – A bit more complicated.  It seems that his problems are possibly the result of a brain injury rather than an eye sight issue.  It may be something called hemi-inattention and while a CT might resolve questions it is unlikely to help find a cure.  What I can mostly find about this is in relation to people after a stroke.  So for now, we have to watch for any seizures and keep an eye on how he reacts in normal daily life.

Yes, our dog could need a cat scan, this potential for humour has not been lost on us.  And it was interesting to watch him as he recovered from the sedation, he was tripping.

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It’s MINE!

26 Jan

My Baby Bear is packing up to head back off to Uni today.  Her cat was not so happy to see his play tunnel folded up and proceeded to pounce on it.  A quick moment photo, no time for getting focus point right, just point and shoot and trust the camera.

©2017 Cathy Craig

On Watch.

18 Jan

Our home is usually a two cat household.  During Uni break our DD has come home and bought her cat with her.  This has created some interesting times around the house.  Velcro is the Matriarch cat, she is also the smallest.  Here she is sitting watching the other two playing hissing games.

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Paws

12 Jan

One of my cats was sitting looking at me and her Paws just looked so cute.  Surprisingly hard to get a photo.   As soon as she saw me paying any kind of attention to her, she came over for a pat, even though I was across the room and had put on my 75-300mm zoom – thats a 600mm equivalent on a full frame camera.

©2017 Cathy Craig

Trying to take the same shot on my Daughters all black cat proved to be a challenge for the auto focus.  I had to focus on the table she was sitting on and hope for the best.  Interesting colour interpretation by the camera of a black cat.

©2017 Cathy Craig