Postings by Spike's Family

GO!

(Page 1 of 31: Viewing entries 1 to 10)  
Page Links: 1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  [Last 10 entry]  

Service & Therapy Dogs > Here we go again....
Spike

Don't Berate,- Educate!
 
 
Barked: Mon Sep 28, '09 7:54pm PST 
Becker, originally when I found out about Spike's health issues, I started looking into programs. All the programs I found didn't work out for some reason -- don't train for my "type of disability," cost WAY too much with no way to work with them if you don't get the money, or rediculous waiting lists. I had found a woman who was working for a program but decided she wanted to start her own. Long story short, she couldn't breed anytime soon, so she said she would just train an appropriate dog if I found one. Another long story short, she wasn't able to do that either. So, I started looking into OT again. The dog in the shelter I was really set on, but in the end it wound up not working out. We took too long on deciding and he wasn't there when we went to get him. So, back to looking. My mother found a program that I had never heard of before which sounded too good to be true, which it was -- we had a miscommunication about what type of dogs they provide and they can't help me.

I think the "other dog" you were thinking of was either my foster (who is *never* allowed near Spike due to his own issues, and also found a home a few weeks ago) or my neighbor's dog which we were also having some trouble with.

For the type of dog I need/want, I would prefer a small dog. But my mobility issues have increased and we decided that a large dog would be better. Now, I have more problems than just mobility, and so it would still be beneficial to have a small dog even if it can't do everything for me.

It seems there has been confusion on other areas as well. Spike is not aggressive. With the exception of a resource guarding issue that has been almost enirely worked through, he has never shown any aggression. It was the other dog who attacked him. Spike was sniffing his butt. He was being playful, romping around. With his recent protocol change, he has had considerable energy. He's been obnoxious, but he most certainly was not being aggressive.

I understand your concern aobut him going out and about, but since the incident, he has been to both the dog park and pet store. He met several other dogs. He was perfectly fine with them. As I said, he isn't being aggressive. Just bouncy and annoying.

Spike has lived well with oher dogs in the past, on four separate occassions. He is fine with other dogs; it would seem he prefers it even. It is his incessant bouncing and running around that is causing the problem.

As for the program, I have spoken with the director on several occassions. She has been invaluable giving me advice. This is a program that I had originally looked into since they are very near me, but they only train a small number of dogs. As a result, the waiting list is very long. This is why I didn't apply there to begin with. Now, we don't think Spike will make it to the time where I would be reaching the top of the list. But I have spoken with the director. She thoroughly understand the situation. She knows Spike is having issues. She is still willing to place a dog with me. I will have to jump through hoops for it, but that is understandable.

And again, rehoming Spike is not an option. My attachment to him is far from the only consideration. With his health, I seriously doubt I could find anyone who would take care of him rather than put him down. I even contacted the liver shunt foundation, who also runs a rescue for dogs with these sort of problems. They told me they wouldn't take him, that they would have to put him down because it's likely that surgery won't help him (although we won't know until we have the scan done). As long as Spike is happy and enjoying life, I will not let him be put down.
[notify]
» There has since been 5 posts. Last posting by Ollivander, Sep 30 10:45 am

Service & Therapy Dogs > Uncertain future
Spike

Don't Berate,- Educate!
 
 
Barked: Mon Sep 28, '09 6:32pm PST 
hughughug

Thinking of you....
[notify]
» There has since been 18 posts. Last posting by , Oct 8 7:38 pm


Service & Therapy Dogs > Passed the Delta Society Therapy Dog test!

Spike

Don't Berate,- Educate!
 
 
Barked: Mon Sep 28, '09 6:31pm PST 
blue dog cheer party
[notify]
» There has since been 2 posts. Last posting by Jolanda, Sep 29 8:16 pm


Service & Therapy Dogs > Here we go again....

Spike

Don't Berate,- Educate!
 
 
Barked: Mon Sep 28, '09 5:23pm PST 
Kaylee, rehoming Spike is not an option. Spike also behaves differently with small dogs, which is why we were thinking another small dog might work. He doesn't want anything to do with them. The one or two times he has had a playdate with a smaller dog, he completely ignored them. As for the program dog, I have already spoken with the program and they are willing to work with me if he is even around at that point.

For your suggestion on this being a textbook case on not getting enough exercise/too much protein, I can assure you, you are wrong. This has been a sudden, marked change in his behavior coinciding with his diet and medication change. Prior to this, he was on a 16% protein diet, walked twice a day, and had a very low energy level. As in, I could play with him for all of five minutes before he would go lay down and sleep for a few hours. He never played with the cats (aside from chewing on their feet if they came to close to him), he never romped or ran at the dog park or in the front lot (dog park was once or twice a week, front lot was about the same), he NEVER played with another dog for longer than five minutes, and he only barked when someone came to the door (or the neighbors' because he apparently can't tell the difference).

Approximately three weeks ago, we switched his diet and his medication. He is now on a 1 . 2% protein diet and he does not stop moving. He barks incessantly at every little noise. He torments and chases the cats until they hide under the bed. We've started going to the dog park every other day. We normally spend about an hour there, but the last time we went we were there for more than three hours. Spike spent the enitre time running, chasing and playing with other dogs when they were there, and just running in circles when they weren't. On the days we don't go to the dog park, he gets to play in the front lot. He spends the entire time running in circles. He now gets walked three times a day and the length of the walks has extended. In addition to this, he gets played with several times throughtout the day, and when he isn't getting played with he is chasing the cats or running in circles. He has killed three toys and two "dinosaur" bones in the past four days alone. The only time he is not being this active is bed time (which he is now restless where before he would sleep very soundly through the night) and about an hour before his next meal.

You cannot reasonably say that he is getting too much protein and not enough exercise. His problem is strictly a medical one. His diet is a prescription low protein diet; the protein is practically nonexistent. The little protein that is in his diet is broken down by the medication he is being given. If there is no protein to bind to, it makes him very sick. We've actually significantly lowered his dose of this particular medication because, with the new diet, there isn't enough protein for him to have more than a nominal dose without getting sick.

I've no doubt Spike is feeling better and this is at least part of the reason for his newfound energy. Even if this weren't the case, my personal vet, two emergency vets, and two trainers have said that Spike's problem is neither caused by lack of exercise (of which he gets plenty) and/or too much protein (of which he gets nearly none). Again, this is what has been recommended by the vet.

And again, multiple vets have said that his problem is strictly medical and that because he now has brain damage, training will (most likely) have no effect on him.

I don't mean to come across as rude, but I really felt your post was uncalled for. I already said rehoming him was not an option, and I know he's getting enough exercise and very little protein. I've had dogs my whole life and I really don't need a lecture on basic dog care, not to mention I trust my vet to tell me if I were doing something wrong.
[notify]
» There has since been 9 posts. Last posting by Ollivander, Sep 30 10:45 am


Service & Therapy Dogs > Here we go again....

Spike

Don't Berate,- Educate!
 
 
Barked: Mon Sep 28, '09 3:39pm PST 
So, we had an incident. Spike was playing with one of his friends. This is a big mutt dog that we've known for as long as we've lived here. Normally they play very well together with the big dog laying down and being very gentle with Spike. He's very tolerant of Spike pulling on his muzzle, nose, neck, paws, whatever he can reach. This dog has been in our house, out shopping with us, etc. If there is any dog that I could trust implicitly with Spike, it would be this dog.

Spike just recently changed his treatment protocol. He's been feeling a lot better but he's also been very high energy. Going after the cats, barking at every little noise, actually running and playing in the dog park (this has NEVER happened before), and generally being a pain. We haven't gone out recently because he's been being like this. I don't know how he will handle working with so much more energy. I was planning on retiring him sometime within the next year, but now it looks like he will be retired in the next month (if he isn't already -- we're planning a short outing in a few days to see how he handles it). So, I've become even more worried about how to replace him.

Spike and his friend were playing on the floor the other day. There were no toys, no nothing between them. Spike went to pounce on the cat and then came back to his friend. All of the sudden, he lunged at Spike; Spike's head was entirely in his mouth. Spike tried to back underneath the couch but he fwapped him with his paw to keep him from going anywhere. Lots of growling, Spike screaming, me screaming for hubby to help me pull the big one away, you get the picture. Big dog was banished outside until he could go home. Spike didn't stop screaming for quite some time. Right underneath his eye was bleeding, he was limping, and was completely terrified. When we got him calmed down enough to check his injuries, we found they weren't very bad. Just a few scratches and bruises. I was so grateful nothing worse had happened. He has since (mostly) returned to normal so I'm not worried about any lasting physical damage. Psychological damage is something else entirely.

This event has made me realize something. Spike's behaviour has been declining rather significantly over the past months; this is why we're trying the new protocol. I had planned on getting a big dog to assist me with my increasing mobility issues, but now I don't know what to do. This dog, that I would have trusted to leave him alone with Spike, is suddenly no longer trustworthy (with Spike). While I think perhaps the big dog was just having a bad day, there is no doubt in my mind that Spike's newfound annoying energy had at least something to do with it.

I'm putting a call into the trainer, but I think I know what she will say. The vet has told me that he can't help the way he is; he's brain damaged. His behavior problems are not something that can be trained away. He knows how he's supposed to behave but he just can't help himself. As I said, I'm going to call the trainer, but I strongly suspect that since she knows his medical problems that she will agree with the vet, especially seeing as recent retraining attemps have been very fruitless.

In other words, since Spike is the problem when it comes to interaction with other dogs, getting a big dog seems to no longer be an option.

I have talked to just about everyone I know about this problem, trying to get an outside opinion on what I should do. So far, the suggestions have been to find a new home for Spike (I could NEVER do this for more than one reason), get another small dog and train it to pick things up for me (the reason for this is then I would still have a service dog but if it and Spike were to get in a tussle, it wouldn't kill Spike [and this would mean they would never be unsupervised together so if there were a tussle it could be swiftly broken up]), or apply for a program dog.

Now, applying for a program dog is something I've been considering (the program I was looking into is not going t work out -- there was a miscommunication about what type of dogs they supply), but a program dog would still be large enough to seriously harm Spike very quickly. A friend of mine said that in her opinion, a program dog would be well trained enough that if Spike were to bother it, it would get up and move. While this may be the case, it may still have a bad day which coul be fatal, not to mention there is no guarantee it would be well trained in that area to begin with. Therefore, I don't really see this as being that great an option.

My dad had a suggestion that I think may be the way we wind up going. His suggestion was to get a small dog and then apply for a nearby program. This program has a rather long waiting list (I think four years), and none of us really think that Spike is going to last that long. So, we'd train the small dog to do what Spike does along with picking things up and a few other tasks. Then once Spike is gone, we would get the big program dog. Now, I know there's no guarantee that there wouldn't be some sort of problem between the new small dog and the program dog, but I guess the thought is that the small dog wouldn't have the medical/behavioural issues that Spike does and therefore wouldn't provoke the big dog.

This has sort of turned into a rant, but I wanted to ask if anyone has any suggestions. Finding Spike a new home is not an option, but I'm not sure what else I can do at this point.
[notify]
» There has since been 12 posts. Last posting by Ollivander, Sep 30 10:45 am

Service & Therapy Dogs > Questions for SD Program?
Spike

Don't Berate,- Educate!
 
 
Barked: Fri Sep 18, '09 11:54am PST 
I know there was a thread about this not that horribly long ago, but I can't seem to find it.

My mother met an SD team a few days ago. She and the handler got to talking, and eventually my mother asked the handler about the dog's training. It turns out the dog is program trained from a not-very-well-known program. So, long story short, I'm going to try applying for the program. Mother and the handler are staying in communication, and the handler will be "sponsoring" me (talking to the program director, etc.). They want to know if I have any questions for the program, and besides the cost of the dog, I can't think of any. Could you guys help me out?
[notify]
» There has since been 2 posts. Last posting by Lisa, Sep 18 1:33 pm


Service & Therapy Dogs > SD Etiquette T-shirt

Spike

Don't Berate,- Educate!
 
 
Barked: Sun Sep 13, '09 1:18am PST 
Mordecai, it can be put on other things as well (I think). And if they don't, you can lways make a similar design and take it to a printing store.

Roanna, I'm horribly dense tonight. What would be an SD that isn't medically needed? I can't think of one (watch how obvious the answer will be -.-). It's great that the puppy raisers get t-shirts. I'm sure they make a lot of people smile as well as giving good information.

Taser, I agree the patches don't always work very well, but I've found that people almost always stop and read what someone's interesting t-shirt says. Whether they would follow it or not, I do not know.
[notify]
» There has since been 4 posts. Last posting by Ollivander, Sep 13 10:46 am


Service & Therapy Dogs > delta question

Spike

Don't Berate,- Educate!
 
 
Barked: Sun Sep 13, '09 1:07am PST 
Delta's isn't a one time shot, but you do have to wait a designated amount of time before you can retest. I think it's three weeks, but I am not certain. You can also only take it a certain number of times, but it's a rather high number. Six, I think. Of course, if your dog hasn't passed it by the third one, it would be a really good time to reevaluate. You should check out Delta's website for more information. In the future it might be better to go to the source if you aren't certain.

Are you planning on taking the Delta test? If you are and you're already with another TD organization, you should know that some of them don't allow you to cross register.
[notify]
» There has since been 1 post. Last posting by Casey (in memory), Sep 15 8:36 pm


Service & Therapy Dogs > The stupidity of the WORLD

Spike

Don't Berate,- Educate!
 
 
Barked: Sun Sep 13, '09 12:53am PST 
Karla, that's a wonderful idea! It's a pity it isn't required. I used to change schools a lot, and not once in any of the schools were disabilities ever discussed. With "the D word" still having such a stigma to it and no one ever talking about it, I guess it isn't really such a wonder that people have attitudes like that. I think it's a wonderful idea for the medical students too -- there are several groups that I belong to that often talk about the doctor/nurse saying "this won't hurt a bit" and then it really does. When the patient tells the nurse/doctor about it, they say "Oh, I didn't think it would" or something to that effect. The medical staff should have to undergo at least some of the proceedures so they understand what it's like. The same goes with living with a condition. I think having them do that is sucha great idea.

Ollie, I've gotten a lot of that sort of treatment too. Before I found Dogster, I joined another SD forum. There were a few people with psych disabilities, but the vast majority were physically disabled. I got jumped on, called horrible names, and was treated very rudely because I'm not in a wheelchair and am therefore not disabled. You would think that people who live with disabilities, whatever they may be, would at least understand. But I guess that's not the case. You're right that sometimes you just have to walk away, but I have a really hard time doing that. Even in a case like this, where the discussion is long over and it's a page everyone else has forgotten about, it still bothers me so much. I agree that people are often harsher online, but in my experience people are honest more honest abut what they really think, how they really feel. Because of that, I don't know that meeting them in person would really do any good. One can hope, though.

Byron, I can imagine how dangerous the halls become! But it's good that they have that experience.

Ando, being "emo" and being depressed are far from the same thing. Many people think that what you feel on the inside and what you show on the outside are the same thing, but most do not wear their heart one their sleeves. When I was in high school, I knew a young woman who was the cheeriest, nicest person you could ever meet. She wore bright clothes, had a lot of friends, and sang in the choir. Everyone envied her. And one day she committed suicide. I wasn't close with her and those who were said they couldn't understand it. My friend who has schizophrenia and I talked about it; we understood it. Didn't necessarily agree with it, but we understood how it could have happened, what she must have felt like. In high school, I found that the majority of people were much too immature to realize that there might actually be something going on with someone other than just creating drama.

Odin, big laugh Since I don't know what you look like, the picture in my head was of Odin the dog wearing a spike leather jacket! I do have to agree though, that most of the scary goths really aren't very scary.
[notify]
» There has since been 7 posts. Last posting by , Sep 14 8:30 am

Service & Therapy Dogs > SD Etiquette T-shirt
Spike

Don't Berate,- Educate!
 
 
Barked: Sat Sep 12, '09 4:17am PST 
Some time ago, someone was talking about making a vest or t-shirt with something to the effect of "Don't pet my dog, s/he is working!" Well, I found a similar one! I thought I would post it if anyone was interested.

SD Etiquette T-shirt
[notify]
» There has since been 11 posts. Last posting by Ollivander, Sep 13 10:46 am

(Page 1 of 31: Viewing entries 1 to 10)  
Page Links: 1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  [Last 10 entry]  

PLEASE NOTE: Due to the rapid nature of forum postings, it's quite possible our calculation of the number of ensuing forum posts may be off by one or two or more at any given moment.