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Dusty

IMG_1387Dusty is an old man. He requires things to be a certain way. For example, if his morning food must be sprinkled with the NuVet with the Duralactin sitting atop or he will give me the look. Oh, better yet, he won’t eat a nibble. The trifecta –Diamond Naturals Chicken and Rice, the NuVet (powder), and the Duralactin. They keep him mobile and more than comfortable.

Our Adults eat the Diamond Naturals Chicken and Rice including Dusty. On occasion, we use a higher calorie food that is very similar–for those needing a bit more than the typical fare. The Duralactin is an all-natural anti-inflammatory supplement–it takes about two weeks to see dramatic results. It helps to diminish the need for prescription medication that is sometimes needed to manage inflammation.

We seriously believe the NuVet combined with a quality basic food (such as the Diamond Naturals) is an excellent diet. Dusty also enjoys steams squash, steamed pumpkin, various other veggies, and whatever morsel he can garner along with his basic diet.

IMG_1388Dusty has a crate (or maybe we ought to call it a hideout) that is located in our utility bath. When the door is open, he can put his eye on me working at my desk. I think he likes that arrangement. You can see his food hangs on the door.

We have had a lot of questions about food lately. Please be aware that your food company may switch the ingredients without warning. A person who was using another food had severe skin and coat issues–hair loss and sores. After spending some serious coin at the Vet Office, they contacted Cliff. It was then that we suggested they check their food for change–sure enough, there had been. They switched over to the Diamond Naturals Chicken and Rice (ordering it from Chewy.com), and her coat began improving within a few days. We suggest you be aware of the food as well as snacks–keeping in mind companies can make these changes that may well raise havoc with the Weimaraner’s coat, or tummy. We can all agree that this situation is best avoided.

Extending our Time

Delicate Discussions

   ~ Part Two

5-Hollee X Benton_4942

Last Friday we discussed the accidental loss of the Weimaraner. One of those haunting and gut-wrenching scenarios that stick with you forever. Of course, we have to be ever vigilant and make sure they are as secure as it is possible. There are; however, other considerations that may well extend your pup’s chance of survival.

No one wants to consider that they might lose their puppy sooner rather than later. While there are no guarantees there a few things we can do to increase the potential longevity.

  1.  Be cautious with the vaccine — we recommend never doubling up the vaccine. That means if you are planning to get an annual DAPPv (Canine Distemper, Adenovirus Type 1 (Hepatitis), Adenovirus Type 2 (Respiratory Disease), Parainfluenza, and Parvovirus) do not combine it with Lepto, Kennel Cough Protection, or the Rabies. It may be your Vet’s standard protocol, but spreading them out is less of a hit on their immune system. (Getting the Lepto only vaccine also gives you greater protection against Lepto).8-Bernie X Boone WK1-22Follow the suggested OwyheeStar puppy vaccine protocol and get a titer test instead of the typical sixteen-week puppy shot. Getting the titers checked for immunity is the smart approach–even if your puppy has shown no sign of being vaccine reactive. Most Weimaraners who have a severe, life-threatening reaction to the sixteen-week shot never had a problem with any previous puppy vaccination. The vaccine titer costs a bit more but nothing in comparison to developing an ongoing immune system issue.

    After the one-year booster, you might consider (down the road) checking the titers again to see if they are still immune. Many professionals have come around to the idea that the DAPPv protection often lasts three years or even longer. The beautiful thing about a titer test is you can find out their immunity level. The unnecessary vaccine could be a potential trigger to a serious health issue.

  2.  Be as Holistic as possible. There are different approaches to Veterinary care. According to the American Holistic Veterinary Medical Association (AHVMA)  holistic medicine humane to the core. The techniques used in holistic medicine are gentle, minimally invasive, and incorporate patient well-being and stress reduction. Holistic thinking is centered on love, empathy, and respect. Click on the link in this paragraph to learn more about this approach to Veterinary medicine.
  3.  Medications–some are not as safe as others in our opinion and experience. 20229379_10155028879813305_8042793045446538520_nRimadyl (carprofen) and its generic counterpart Novox Carprofen are something we are not comfortable using for the Weimaraner. You never know when it is going to have a serious adverse side effect–in our case and that of two other OwyheeStar clients experience it led to severe and uncontrollable seizures. There are alternative anti-inflammatory medications. Whenever possible, we recommend you avoid Rimadyl. If it becomes necessary, then try to reduce the dosage or get off it as soon as possible. To manage or to prevent this situation; however, requires that you advocate because it is most usually the go to drug of choice after surgery or when facing arthritic situations.
  4. No one food is right for every Weimaraner. A quality grain-free food is our suggestion, and we are not speaking about one of these premium brands that touts all kind of additives. We believe in adding a quality supplement in the right dosage and staying away from foods that claim they add these things. Why? You might ask. Well,  supplements get old, and even dog food needs to be fresh. Also, how do you know the quality of the additives? You don’t. Stick with the basic quality food and add something that is proven and has excellent quality control. Keep in mind, many of the Big Name Brands are not as high quality as you might think. Your pocketbook may not be able to afford a raw food diet, or the best dog food money can buy. You can provide basic quality food. The right food is apt to help them live longer.
  5. NuVet--we cannot say enough about this supplement. The only caution we have is for young pups. Too much of a good thing can be counterproductive. We suggest you follow our recommended protocol. A small amount of the NuVet powder sprinkled on the young Weimaraner’s food every day will make a big difference. It might take time to see results if you have existing problems, but there are many testimonials including the one we received last week from Mary.  (Click on the NuVet  link below to learn more about this supplement.)

    She writes. PS – when we got Olli we started both dogs on Nuvet. Rudi had horrible allergies but they steadily improved over the last 2 years to the point of not needing any medication. Coincidence?  I think not. We are sold on the benefits.

  6. Bloat is a complicated and somewhat mysterious life-threatening situation. We are going to refer you to an article (rather than addressing it ourselves).  Click Here to find out more about the risk of bloat, thank you!
  7. Insurance–the pros and cons of having it. We believe you should invest in some kind of major medical coverage. Eventually, the athletic Weimaraner is going to need extreme Veterinary or special care. Sometimes this happens early in life–a torn ACL, etc. There is the threat of bloat (as mentioned above) in this breed, too! We cannot speak to which insurance company pays the best. Our Vet Office has their favorite company because they say they pay quickly. Some people say that if you get the insurance up front that the first year is nearly a wash. Many policies cover the vaccine, general care and then you have the cost of the spay or the neuter. (Typically, there is a set allotted amount to cover basic visits in some of these policies–each one is different).
  8. Do your research, but keep in mind that many of these surgical procedures cost Crane's Lucy4$2,000 and up. Insurance doesn’t negate your personal responsibility. We might forget we are the gatekeeper and in the heat of the moment simply say do whatever is needed. Insurance means it might not be a cost consideration–in the midst of a crisis, your Weimaraner may receive medication that leads to other issues. Everyone just wants to trust their Vet to do what is right. We understand. Nevertheless, it is important to always keep in mind that they are treating all breeds and a lot of mutts. Each Veterinary fur client is important, but they are not all equally sensitive to certain vaccines, medication, etc.

Thank you, for doing the best by your Weimaraner. We appreciate every sacrifice made for our OwyheeStar offspring. We work with the best Weimlovers in the universe. How privileged we are!?!

The photos we added are not directly related to loss–just a reminder of what we value.

 

 

 

Longevity and Aging

Cliff with Red_4382How long will my Weimaraner live?

Longevity is a affected by many factors; included are a mix of ingredients…

  1. The breed
  2. The luck of the DNA draw
  3. Care or quality of life
  4. Circumstances
  5. The unforeseen

How long will my Weimaraner live?

A few Weimaraners will live to see sixteen years. The sixteen-year scenario is always the hope. Unfortunately, that is a bit unrealistic. Most Weimaraners live between ten and twelve years. As with humans, some are snatched away earlier than expected by an accident, or an early-onset health issue.

Frustration, tears, and fear of loss

Expectations set the stage for a huge emotional tumble when our Weimaraner begins to decline (–this is never truer if we receive bad news). However, we caution that our mailbox sees a lot of roller-coaster rides that end up going nowhere. In the end, the Weim didn’t have cancer, nor were they on their death bed. The Veterinary studies to look for problems, and sometimes that focus can lead to unnecessary testing (and too much medication). Too many folks receive choices that lead them to spend money for services that produce nothing positive. More often than not, the best thing a person can do for the Weimaraner that is experiencing a problem, is to buy some time. Very often, during the time-buying phase the mysterious issue will disappear. This is not always the case, but more often than not it works out this way.

Avoid unnecessary tests and medications

Treatment choices should be as holistic as possible. For example, avoid Rimadyl, in particular (and as many drugs as feasible). The Weimaraner will do better with fewer chemicals. Find a diet that is Weim-appropriate and stick with it. No one diet works best for every dog, or every Weimaraner. Some have a sensitive stomach.

OwyheeStar On-going Support and Assistance

Even as a breeder when we have done everything possible to ensure the health of the pups, something will eventually affect the Weim’s health. Having been on this side of the fence our best advice is not to over react. For our OwyheeStar clients, Cliff is willing to help in any way he possibly can. He has an ear (and can offer a wealth of experience) to those facing health issues. He is a very calm and collected problem solver. We realize that issues will surface. These issues may be related to health, training, or behaviors. There is a wealth of information on this blog, but for the OwyheeStar client (or our extended OwyheeStar family as we like to call them), they can write to Cliff. (cliff@owyheestar.com) He will give his best advice. If it is something we don’t know much about, Cliff has some professional support where he can get a second opinion.

Cliff with Pup_4439No Weimaraner lives long enough………

As you might guess, our mailbox is filled with inquiries from people who lost their beloved Weimaraner. The vast majority of these folks are new to us. Regardless, we feel their loss. We cannot replace their previous beloved family member.

There is no typical grieving period. Some take a couple of months, while others require years. Some look for a similar Weimaraner, and others switch to a different color or sex. Often people consider switching breeds only to return to the Weimaraner, because it is the only breed for them.

Our best advice to you…

Be safe, be vigilant, be matter-of-fact, be holistic, and count each day as a gift.

~Cliff and Shela (OwyheeStar Weimaraners)