I thought that Bear, our 11 month old Coonhound mix, might be the one furbaby that we have that wouldn’t have issues. It’s like the powers that be decided that we would be the pet owners that would take in and love high maintenance pets. Here’s the run down of the zoo and their issues, some easy to fix, some not so easy to fix:
Tigger, our 13 yr old kitty. I got him in college from the Human Society. He was the runt of his litter and so very tiny. He has allergies-that thankfully have improved over the yrs-and almost died within a month of my adopting him. He has the easiest issue of the zoo-he is super attached to Oscar and me. He will meow at the top of his lungs for hours if I don’t give him attention. I’m also allergic to cats and he likes to sleep in bed with me. He likes to escape the home, as well, which can be problematic because there are woods behind our place.
Oscar, aka Jabba-Kitty, our 10 yr old kitty. An ex boyfriend and I found him living underneath our apartment. If he doesn’t eat either canned food or special urinary tract cat food, he pisses straight blood. I cannot tell you how awful it is when he’s done that-thankfully, this is an easy issue to control. He likes the dogs and lets them rest their heads on him as well as clean his ears. He is also a big, slightly overweight cat. Don’t worry, the vet says that he is perfectly healthy and to not worry about the weight issue. He also likes to sleep right by my head which causes me to not be able to breathe out of my nose the next morning.
Malibu, our 7-9 yr old (she’s a rescue, not entirely sure of her age when I adopted her) chow mix. I adopted her before I met DH. She was found on the streets, emaciated and covered in ticks. She has also obviously been abused. She is territorial to the max. She growls and barks at strange men and even at DH is he comes to bed after I’m already in the bed. She also is very picky about what other dogs that she likes. She is starting to go senile 😦 She and our pit mix have gotten into a handful of fights since we had both of them. Like real, drawing blood fights. She loves women and children. She completely ignores babies. She adores me and walks well on a leash. She LOVES meeting new people outside of our home, but not so much when people come in our home.
Chloe, our 3.5 yr old pit/lab mix. We adopted her from a rescue in GA so we are sure of her age and background. She is fairly well behaved but is scared of A LOT of things. She quivers out of fear when she hears thunder, sees lightening, smells/hears fireworks, smells bacon frying (DH set of the smoke alarm once-something else that she’s terrified of) or hears gunshots (no, we don’t live in a bad area-we live near a military post). She is also allergic to flea bites and whenever we board her she shits blood for days after we get her home because of the stress of us being gone. At times she is moody with the other dogs but in general she gets along well with all dogs. She adores people, children and babies.
Ranger, our 2.5 yr old chocolate lab mix. I found him on the side of the road when he was a little over 3 weeks old. He was covered in fleas and ticks. He had every parasite and was anemic. He is allergic to fleas and is prone to skin infections. He has to take fish oil to help his skin because he doesn’t produce enough oils on his own. In the first month he cost us over $300. At 3 months old we discovered that he also has hip dysplasia. He takes fish oil on a daily basis and we are adding glucosamine to his food. We now also suspect that he’s developed hip dysplasia in his other hip. Eventually he will probably need surgery. He loves all living things, especially babies, puppies and us. He gets along with all dogs and gets confused if strange dogs don’t like him. He has separation anxiety and also shits pure blood when we board him. In fact, he shits blood whenever he gets too stressed, including when my DH has so go into the field for days at a time.
Bear, our newest pack member. He’s an 11 month old black and tan coonhound mix. He howls when he wants food, attention, toys or just when he gets the urge. He is exorbitantly affectionate to us and the dogs. He vomits when he plays too hard. He “trees” the cats on pieces of furniture. He likes to jump off and over the back of the couch. He chews through drywall and drags all of the dog toys into the yard. He digs and buried things in the yard. We’ve made improvements in his behavioral issues but now a health issue has popped up. He has started limping on his front left leg. After consulting Dr. Google, we have figured out that he most likely has Osteochondritis dissecans. Treatment is complete bedrest for 4-8 weeks along with taking Rimadyl. Did I mention that he likes to jump and run? How in the heck are we supposed to make him crate bound for 4-8 weeks when we have 3 other dogs that run around and play? That’s just cruel. For right now we are limiting the play and nixing our nice long walks that we used to do with the dogs. Eventually he might need surgery. He loves us and is the best sleeping dog that we have. He will literally lay down with me and sleep for 10 hours if that’s how long I stay in bed. He loves everything.
There’s the run down of our zoo. I love all them with all their issues. We’ve already started a savings account for upcoming out of the normal expenses, including surgery. It breaks my heart when Ranger and Bear limp or have pain. It also breaks my heart when Chloe shakes from fear-yes, I comfort her and I’m sure that Cesar would not agree, but I don’t go overboard with her-or when Malibu gets scared meeting new people that come over. I tend to think that many people would have gotten rid of at least some of our animals if they would’ve adopted them but not us. Adoption is forever, you take the good with the bad. These are our furbabies and we will do whatever we can to help them and keep them happy.