Would you rather be dead?

My vet says my dog would rather be dead.  Actually, he didn’t say it like that and he’s a great guy but he does really think I should euthenize her.  I don’t agree.  As of yesterday she was still walking around, following us everywhere, tail wagging.  Not her usual self, but she still wanted to be a part of things.  Today I’m not so sure.  She slept most of the day and she had to be coaxed out to the car to see the vet.  But he assures me she’s not in pain, she’s just extremely uncomfortable.  So how do you decide whether she’s so uncomfortable that she’d rather be dead?  Personally, I think she’d rather be alive.  Am I making the right decision?  Nobody can know.

As for what’s going on – Teddy was diagnosed with kidney failure last September.   The vet gave her two months to two years to live and it looks like it’s going to be within the next week. She’s down to 35 pounds – from 75 pounds a year ago and she hasn’t eaten anything for the past week.  I’m going to miss her!

Humans for Dogs

I’m seperating my blogs.  All posts about dogs will now be at Humans for Dogs .  I copied over some of the more popular posts already.  New dog posts will just be posted at Humans for Dogs.

Do you miss your dog?

Would you take a pay cut to be able to bring your dog to work?  Would you work longer hours?  Bringing pooch to work | News.blog | CNET News.com.

I’d certainly like to bring my dog(s) to work, but I really wonder about all the people/dog and dog/dog interactions that would happen.  If you’ve ever stepped into a doggie daycare place, you know it can get kind of wild with dogs running around and barking at each other.  If you have a bunch of dogs at work, do you have to hire a doggie nanny?

Dogs Can Smell Cancer

Dogs can smell cancer.  These researchers have trained dogs to sit when they smell lung cancer and they got it right 99% of the time.  This is not new news.  I wonder why it hasn’t been applied more globaly?  Is it a shortage of cancer researchers who also know how to train dogs?

Dogs Excel on Smell Test to Find Cancer – New York Times.

For more dog posts see my blog Humans for Dogs.

Why does my dog lean?

Judging from the general lack of information on the web and the large variation of answers that I did find, I think we don’t yet know enough about dog behavior.  From what I found, I concluded that our chocolate lab is looking for attention when he leans on you.  (The other option was aggression and I’m not buying that as a cause for leaning for our 75 pound lap dog!)  From Dominance aggression in dogs: Part 1.

Owners need to distinguish these behaviors from mere pushiness or attention-seeking. For example, if a dog is leaning against its owner just to get attention, the owner can physically move the dog without its becoming aggressive. Unlike most dominantly aggressive dogs, dogs that lean on a person for attention do not stiffen, open their eyes, and move with the person so they are again touching or pressing.

Think Like a Dog

If you want to figure out why your dog is misbehaving, you need to think like a dog, not a human.  This article does a great job of showing how we misinterpret why dogs misbehave.  One of our dogs has diarrhea in every room of the house if we leave him at home alone.  I decided it couldn’t be because he was mad at us because it didn’t seem to be something he could control.  Besides, if we leave him in the bedroom, he doesn’t have a problem.  Our vet confirmed that he’s nervous.  The house is too much freedom; the bedroom feels safe.

Do Dogs Think? – Owners assume their pet’s brain works like their own. That’s a big mistake. By Jon Katz.

How much do dogs sleep?

My dogs sleep a lot.  A really lot.  So I decided to see if I could find the real answer to “how much do dogs sleep?” According to Sleep and Dreams in Dogs and Cats:

Under controlled laboratory conditions both cats and dogs sleep about 13 hours per day but they wake up more frequently than people do.

According to Planet Dog:

• Adult dogs spend approximately half their life sleeping,
typically 12 hours a day.

• Some breeds need more sleep than others –
as much as 18 hours per day! (typically larger breeds).

I think mine sleep more than average – closer to the 18 hour limit.  They sleep 8 hours a night with us.  They sleep while we read or watch TV in the evening.  And they sleep all day if we leave them inside.  I’d bet they are only awake 4-5 hours a day during a normal day.

Buy your dog a good bed. Here’s one if they like turning in circles before they lie down.

Photo by mikecpeck.