Thursday, 31 December 2015

Beating the heat with a new doggy pool

It sure is hot in our house since the day before Christmas, when the evaporative cooling on the roof flooded our lounge room. Water poured down through the light fittings and through the cooling vents.

And it did it again on Christmas Day!

So now we don't have any cooling, for the first time in Penny's lifetime. And she's feeling the heat. It's still about 35°C at 10:15 at night (about 95°F), and Penny's lying in front of a fan, worn out, as we all are.

But we did have some fun earlier in the evening with our new doggy pool. It's called 'buddy and belle' and so far it seems to be suitable. I like the fact that it folds away when not in use, not like those plastic sand-play shells we had when Penny was a puppy.

I wondered how the material would stand up to a dog's claws, but it does seem to be thick material. The man in PetStock, where we bought it, hadn't sold one before - I think it's a new product - but we examined it and it's the thick material used for lining human pools, so it should be okay.

Just in case it does spring a leak, I've positioned it uphill from a major tree in the garden, which could use the water, and also uphill from our goji vine.

Penny jumped in to fetch thrown toys, and out again, and normally I'm not keen for her to jump, due to her arthritis, but with such heat it seems worth the risk. She sure had fun. I guess we could try out a little stool for her to get in, but I think she'd ignore it. When she's after a ball she's focused on the task!

Monday, 28 December 2015

Penny's invisibility trick

Penny has a lovely new collar. She received it because her old one mysteriously fell off when we were walking. A kind neighbour read our phone number on it and called us to say he'd found it in the street, so we hurried around - well, in the recent heat it couldn't actually be called 'hurrying' - to collect it. But the clasp was broken off.

So we bought a lovely new one. And Penny christened it this morning in a mud puddle. (We won't be complaining about the puddle, because it's so thrilling to have had some rain at last.)

 And then she rolled in the grass, which is very yellow after the long dry weeks, and did a disappearing act. It's hard to see where Penny finishes and the landscape begins.

Saturday, 19 December 2015

hot weather and allergies and chest infections

How come I'm willing to get up at the crack of dawn, before the stifling heat lands on us, yet Penny's acting like a wimp about going for a walk?

Luckily she can always be persuaded to walk out the door to eat a treat.

Ooops, just noticed how I titled this post...

Well, the allergies are being experimentally treated with Cetirizine. I read online that the basic dose is 1mg per dog body weight, and the vet agreed. This site has lots of info.

As to the chest infection, she's still taking Amoxyclav 250.

I'm so looking forward to the time when she is on no medications.

Friday, 11 December 2015

recuperating at Wangaratta in lovely Fleur de Lys house

Last week, while Penny was recuperating from her bout of gastro, which hasn't completely settled, we headed off for a few days at Wangaratta, taking the Royal Canin 'gastro' dry food with us. (How easy it is when you just offer the same food every meal!)

Things were complicated by the fact that Penny was also taking antibiotics for the 'significant' chest infection that had been diagnosed after the vet washed liquid into her trachea and pulled it back, thus obtaining a sample from her trachea and her lungs. He also did a swab of her trachea.

At least we now knew what the strange cough was, and could start to treat it. Hoping, of course, that the antibiotics didn't upset her stomach too much. (Oh, what a tricky thing it is to look after a dog!)

We found a dog-friendly house near the centre of Wangaratta, called Fleur de Lys. Polished floor boards, except for carpet in the bedrooms, and immaculately clean throughout.

A few days resting in the sunroom was just what Penny needed.

And when the days got hot, we opened the doors so a breeze flowed through. (The yard was fenced and safe enough for a home-loving, calm dog like Penny.)

I think it would be a great town to walk around in cooler weather, and it has a river for a swim, but we kept exercise to a minimum while Penny isn't well.

She's still on the antibiotics, and we're trying anti-histamines for her itchy skin. But more about that in a subsequent post...