Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Managing My Dog's Pancreatitis Flare Up Requires Dietary Management

Standard Internet Disclaimer:  I'm not a vet. 

If you have a problem with your dog's health go see a vet

I can't be responsible for any "bad advice" that you apply - GO SEE A VET if you suspect a problem. 

I am but a blog writer, don't let me be your only source of information.

However this is what worked for me.  I am not a Doctor, or a Vet.  I am however someone who has been on an "Athletic Training Diet" since 1979, so some of this is a lot of applied knowledge that came from my own trial and error.

The symptoms were that my dog got sluggish, started vomiting, and started refusing his food.  We had a bout with Diarrhea. 

The Vet suspected Pancreatitis, and after research, it seemed very likely that this was the case.   We also suspected that he has always had this but it just hadn't flared up yet.

It took a couple weeks worth of fiddling with his diet to figure this solution out.

The solution was "nuanced".  There were a few subtle things that I was doing wrong, apparently very wrong for my dog.

The result was that he's now healthy, two pounds lighter, and probably will always be on a low fat diet.


We never have completely figured out Rack's nutritional problems.  I got him as a rescue puppy with some pretty severe problems.  Worms that took three cycles of de-worming powder to kill off.  What turned out to be an allergy to poultry and grain.

His nutrition as a puppy at 7 months took him longer to get figured out than I would have liked, and it resulted in him being on the "small and light" side for the breed.

He always got the grain free dry food, when I could convince him to eat it since his teeth were naturally missing in the back.

While that is a lot to manage, it triggered my own training diet mind in gear and I figured out what was wrong.  I lost 75 pounds in 2 years when younger and have maintained a better than normal build through nutrition and exercise in the too-many years since, I should be able to figure this out.

When the prepared dry food we were giving him moved production to the US, and to a state  known for lax enforcement of food quality standards, I panicked.  The quality would suffer so we needed a different way.  That brand later had a food recall for some reason and we heard that there were dogs endangered as a result.

I was forced to prepare his own food.  Twice a week, I would take 2 1/2 pounds of cooked and browned ground beef, add water, add powder and feed him that.  He did very well on it although he got bored with it after a while.

That should have been a cue something was up.

So I did an internet search for a crock pot dog food.  Found one recipe that is human safe, although very bland - I even tasted it.  He did very well on that but it did tire him after a while.

I kept feeding him the two foods, alternating every week between recipes.

Then the Pancreatitis hit.  I recognized the symptoms from my old dog, Lettie, who had it
before she passed of kidney failure induced by "recalled dog food".  The same symptoms.  Refusing food, sluggish, loose stool, occasional vomiting.

Rack at this point is in the prime of his life.  Five years old herding dog.  Should be beyond active. 

I did some research and realized that treating him well was the problem.

We have a routine.  He gets his food at breakfast and dinner.  I rarely give him treats.  Almost never give him table scraps.

I have Pork more often than I have anything else.  I can make a pork tenderloin into something that is High End Restaurant quality.  Pork Tenderloin is a very forgiving recipe - 250F Slow oven until internally 140F.   Takes around two hours.  Marinade the Pork the night before in sauces of choice, I prefer Barbecue Sauce.

Try that recipe on Pork Loin and it works, although Pork Loin is much tougher.  Pork Loin also has a layer of fat left on it so it can soak down into the roast. 

That was the problem.

Dogs do not digest pork fat well.

Two days before the incident, I had given him the fat from the top of my lunch pork.  I did that again the next day.

The third day, he later started refusing food. 

HIS food never changed.  MY food had.  I went from the Pork Tenderloin which is just about the leanest meat you can get to Pork Loin and feeding him an ounce of fatty scraps.

On research it turns out that you should never feed a dog pork fat.  That includes Bacon.

Dogs can not digest it well, it tends to cause problems.  Like Pancreatitis.

So all snacks were cancelled.  He got a Fasting Day to clear his system of the fat.  His "regular food" was cut down to a quarter and served on a bed of white rice to be mixed in.

He began eating it slowly.

As his system cleared out, I mixed in proportionally more of the regular food.

He had a small flare up.

It turned out that the beef I was serving was a problem as well.  There was too much fat in the meat.  This was a "Utility Grade Meat" and as such had a significant quantity of added fat.  You could actually smell the fat in the resulting dog food.

Now my own cooking skills were brought to task.  I had a freezer full of Utility Grade Meat that needed to be de-fatted.

If you won't eat it, don't feed it to the dog.

Brown the meat and skim off as much fat as possible

I was getting as much as a cup of fat skimmed off of 2 1/2 pounds of "beef".

Prepare the normal recipes.

Success.

The only side effect was that he started losing weight.  That I can manage since he was acting hungry again.  His serving sizes were increased by an ounce at a time over the next couple weeks until the weight loss stopped and the begging slowed.

Now he's doing fine.  Begging for Yogurt here is at a normal level and since I make the stuff for my own use, it's not a problem.

Stools are normal.  Coat is shiny and soft.  No vomiting.

Best of all the energy level is higher than I remember it.  Which means that I get more exercise as well.

So:
  • Reduce the fat to the utmost minimum.  
  • No table scraps ever.  
  • No added sugar, ever.
  • No added salt, ever.
  • No treats of Bacon or other fat from the roasts.  

It helped him out big time.  I'm back to being run around by a herding dog with a big personality.


Sunday, August 18, 2019

An octogenarian couple were peddling their tandem bicycle. The perfect definition of fossil fuel.

As I go through things, I look to see if I can find something that genuinely makes me laugh.

Not too long, not too short, and not too lewd. 

I have that "Has to be able to be told on TV rule" although really since TV is getting edgier by the day, it should be "Has to be able to be told in First Grade".

This one here, is probably too long but it makes all the other bullet points. 

Since I need another Coffee this Sunday morning, here it is.


How Time Flies

A group of 15 year old boys discussed where they should meet for dinner. It was agreed they would meet at the McDonald’s next to Captain Jack’s Seafood Grille because they only had six dollars among them, they could ride their bikes there, and Jennie Webster, that cute girl in Social Studies, lives on the same street and they might see her.

————————————————————————

Ten years later, the group of now 25 year old guys discussed where they should meet for dinner. It was agreed they would meet at Captain Jack’s Seafood Grille because the beer was cheap, the bar had free snacks, the house band was good, there was no cover charge and there were lot of cute girls.

———————————————————————

Ten years later, at 35 years of age, the group once again discussed where they should meet for dinner. It was decided they would meet at Captain Jack’s Seafood Grille because the booze was good, it was near their gym and, if they went late enough, there wouldn’t be too many whiny little kids.

————————————————————————

Ten years later, at 45, the group once again discussed where they should meet for dinner. It was agreed they would meet at Captain Jack’s Seafood Grille, because the martinis were big and the waitresses wore tight pants.

————————————————————————

Ten years later, now 55, the group once again discussed where they should meet for dinner. It was agreed they would meet at Captain Jack’s Seafood Grille, because the prices were reasonable, they have a nice wine list and fish is good for your cholesterol.

————————————————————————

Ten years later, at 65 years of age, the group once again discussed where they should meet for dinner. It was agreed they would meet at Captain Jack’s Seafood Grille, because the lighting was good and they have an early bird special.

————————————————————————

Ten years later, at 75 years of age, the group once again discussed where they should meet for dinner. It was agreed they would meet at Captain Jack’s Seafood Grille, because the food was not too spicy and the restaurant was handicapped-accessible.

————————————————————————

Ten years later, at 85 years of age, the group once again discussed where they should meet for dinner. It was agreed they would meet at Captain Jack’s Seafood Grille because they had never been there before.

Saturday, August 17, 2019

Why is is so hard to get a pearl from an oyster? Because they’re a little shellfish.

Once Upon a Time I worked in a small insurance company in Jenkintown PA.  My direct boss told me this joke, which was really quite odd.  He was an older, probably old before his time, humorless man who was extremely religious and extremely uptight. 

Aren't they all?

So, there I was standing in an over-lit computer room hearing this man tell me this joke over the fans and the printers.

I guess he wasn't really all that uptight.






Why did I get divorced?

Well, last week was my birthday.

My wife didn't wish me a happy birthday. My parents forgot and so did my kids. I went to work and even my colleagues didn't wish me a happy birthday.

As I entered my office, my secretary said, "Happy birthday, boss!" and I felt really special.

Then, she asked me out for lunch. After lunch, she invited me to her apartment. We went there and she said: "Do you mind if I go into the bedroom for a minute?" and I replied ''Okay!''

She came out 5 minutes later with a birthday cake, my wife, my parents, my kids, my friends and my colleagues all yelling,, "SURPRISE!!!" while I was waiting on the sofa... naked!!!



Only because this fits well with the next one it's Two-Fer Time!






Husband stormed to his wife in the kitchen and announced

"From now on you need to know that I am the man of this house and my word is Law.

You will prepare me a gourmet meal tonight, and when I'm done eating my meal, you will serve me a scrumptious dessert.

After dinner, you are going to go upstairs with me and we will have the kind of sex I want!

Afterwards you are going to draw me a bath so I can relax.

You will wash my back and towel me dry and bring me my robe.

Then, you will massage my feet and hands.

Then tomorrow, guess who's going to dress me and comb my hair?"

The wife replied,"The funeral director would be my first guess"

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Cream Biscuits Recipe or How It Took Me Three Weeks To Make A 10 Minute Recipe

The recipe is straightforward.

2 Cups Self Rising Flour
1 1/2 Cups Heavy Cream or Whipping Cream
1 Tablespoon Sugar.

To large mixing bowl

Add 2 Cups Self Rising Flour.
Sprinkle 1 Tablespoon sugar on top and stir a little bit.
Pour 1 1/2 cups of Heavy Cream on top.
Stir until it begins to form a dough.
Continue to mix with your bare hands until it forms a "Play Doh" consistency.

The dough will go through phases where it is:
  • "mealy"
  • dry and lumpy
  • dry on the outside but one ball
  • slightly tacky and moist on the outside - STOP HERE!
Roll the dough out to 1/2 inch thickness, about the thickness of your thumb, palm down.
Use a 3 inch (about 8CM) drinking glass to cut into circles.

Cook the biscuits on a foil lined cookie sheet at 500F until tops are brown - about 10 minutes
Make sure that the biscuits are cooked fully, give them the time they need in the oven.

So my own long winded story.

I was out skating, because that is what I do.  Some of my best ideas come when my heart rate is ticking along at 173 BPM, I'm sweating like I just walked through a car wash, and I'm on eight or ten wheels.

I was thinking about getting home and having something "special" and Biscuits and Gravy came to mind.

Biscuits are one of those things that every "Good Southern Lady" has been taught how to make, and if they are successful, they do it this way because "That's How Momma Taught Me!"

Usually it takes "cutting in ice cold butter" in pea sized chunks so that the steam from the butter will help to give it height.

I'm neither Southern, nor a Woman - not that there is anything with that, nor not that there is anything wrong with not being that.

I also tend to look for shortcuts in the kitchen.

That Southern Recipe is kind of fussy and really does take practice.

The recipe up top there?  It's easy.  You just have to be patient in the oven.

That night when we went shopping I remembered I wanted the heavy cream to make these biscuits. 

Since I was going to be left alone for a couple weeks, I also had to get some ground beef for Rack, my McNab SuperDog (TM).  I ended up getting 30 pounds of ground beef which basically ate my freezer's extra space.

I never bake just one of something, and the biscuits would serve me a week of breakfasts.  But with Mr Dog's food ingredients squatting on the prime real estate in my freezer, I had to wait until the freezer drained of "extra" food.


So I watched.  Every time I opened that freezer and took something out, I did a little mental Happy Dance to think I was getting closer to being able to have those biscuits.

In later shopping trips, I did manage to over fill the house, and get some jarred gravy.  If you are reading this from outside of the US, this is not brown gravy - it's something called Red Eye Gravy, which is a white Bechamel Sauce cooked with Sausage Chunks and some black pepper to make it all savory.

This stuff is not light, it's not healthy, and it may not be something for every day, but some people do it daily, and I have seen pictures of an English Breakfast and was amazed at just how much food was on that plate!

Having been on a training diet since 1979, nobody who regularly eats an English Breakfast (Or Irish, Or Canadian, or ...) has any room to point fingers.

Once the freezer had finally been "eaten down" to creating the space for seven biscuits to go back in there, I decided it was time.

This Morning.

I made the recipe, and had the results in that picture. 

I am impatient when it comes to Biscuits.  I tend to pull them too early, and this was no different.  I did not allow them to cook the full 10 minutes, and they were raw inside.

Back in the oven you go, I ended up giving them three more minutes at 500F to get them almost perfect.

Served in a bowl with 1/4 cup of steaming hot Red Eye Sausage Gravy on top, I was in heaven.

3 weeks to get them, they had better be good!

Sunday, August 11, 2019

Why should you always hang out your laundry? Otherwise it's launwet.

His Eminence

A drunk man who smelled like cheap wine sat down on a subway seat next to a priest.

The man's tie was stained, his face was plastered with red lipstick, and a half empty bottle of gin was sticking out of his torn coat pocket. He opened the newspaper and began reading.

After a few minutes the man turned to the priest and asked, "Say, Father, what causes arthritis?"

"My son, it's caused by loose living, being with cheap, wicked women, too much alcohol and a contempt for your fellow man."

"Well, I'll be hornswaggled," the drunk muttered, returning to his paper.

The priest, thinking about what he had said, nudged the man and apologized. "I'm very sorry.

I didn't mean to come on so strong. How long have you had arthritis?"
"I don't have it, Father. I was just reading here that the Pope does."

Saturday, August 10, 2019

Why was the baby strawberry crying? Because his mom and dad were in a jam!

It was time for the annual bug convention

And all the bugs were getting together and having a good time. The bees were discussing pollinating flowers, the dung beetles were discussing how to properly move dung, the earth worms how to improve soil, etc.

Well, the lady bugs were having a good time when one of them noticed the house flies doing something odd. They would stand together in a group when one would fly off and return, causing the others to laugh and cheer. This confused the lady bug and so he asked the others what they were doing.

"Oh they do this every year. They're timing how long it takes to fly from one end of the building to the other," she said.

"But why are they laughing so much? What's so great about that?" the other asked.

"Don't you know?" the other ladybug began. "Flies time when they're having fun."

Wednesday, August 7, 2019

Debian Buster with XFCE4 Basics - Stopping the Windows From Going Full Screen on the Edges

This is basic, quick, and annoying.

While I can make my Debian Linux look like just about anything including a Mac, various versions of Windows, and more, I have a fairly lightly modified desktop.  I look for speed and flexibility and it shows. 

However sometimes things just don't go quite right.

I use a trackball, not a mouse.  I need it for graphics work both here on the blog and elsewhere.  The Hand Tremors we all have mean that sometimes something I do will jitter.

Sometimes I just get a little too close to the edges of the windows.

Either way it means now I have a window I am trying to move to a corner or a side has just exploded full screen or is strobing large and small in some fit of electronic insanity.

Lets stop that.

In XFCE 4:

  • Click Applications Menu.
  • Mouse over to Settings, then down to Window Manager Tweaks.
  • Click on the "Accessibility" tab.
  • Click the check box off on "Automatically tile windows when moving toward the screen edge".
  • Click close.

That's it you're done.

Enjoy.  No more weird strobing.

If you want it back, simply reverse the steps and click the box back on.

Sunday, August 4, 2019

How About a Bunch of Fifteen One Liners?

Not that this blog is setting the world on fire, but I do have some friends that keep sending me one line jokes. 

Those Dad Jokes that I use as titles for these weekend joke posts.

Suitable for all audiences.

I have a file on my desktop on my main Debian Linux Computer that I keep them and when I need one, cut, paste, publish.

I don't really understand Number 6 but here you go!




"Get Thee to a Punnery"
  1. Review of the new Mary Poppins themed restaurant: Super cauliflower cheese but the lobster was atrocious.
  2. Never try to teach a pig to play basketball - he'll just hog the ball.
  3. I swallowed a laxative with holy water - I'm about to start a religious movement.
  4. I once had a job at an eyeglass store but I quietly quit. I didn't want to make a spectacle.
  5. I nearly bought a hill today, but it was a bit too steep.
  6. The frog's DNA test revealed that he was a tad Polish.
  7. Some people think my puns are juvenile. I prefer to think of them as full groan.
  8. I didn't think wearing orthopedic shoes would help, but I stand corrected"
  9. It was raining cats and dogs. There were poodles all over the road.
  10. The state police highway officer worked tirelessly in the heavy rain to assist a lady whose car was stuck in a ditch. He was a real trooper.
  11. What does a spy do in the rain? He goes undercover
  12. I once had a job prospecting for gold, but it didn't pan out.
  13. I just got a new job at a guillotine factory... I'll be headed there shortly.
  14. While was sitting on a bench I noticed a really foul odor - then I realized it was a pew.
  15. Athenians hate mornings because Dawn is tough on Greece.

Saturday, August 3, 2019

What kind of music do mummies listen to? Wrap music.

I can remember sitting in the big chair when I was a kid and watching all those old sit-coms from the decades before.  There was a running gag in a lot of them about relationships that had me scratching my head. 

This particular joke reminds me of one of those plots.  Married couple, relationship has gone stale, and instead of talking they're using a mediator to do what they should do themselves.


With a twist.

The moral of the story?  Don't watch old sit-coms.




After thirty years of marriage a husband and wife go for counseling.

When asked what the problem is, the wife goes into a tirade listing every problem they had ever had in the years they had been married.

On and on she goes: neglect, lack of intimacy, emptiness, loneliness, feeling unloved and unlovable—an entire laundry list of unmet needs she has endured.

Finally, after allowing this for a sufficient length of time, the therapist gets up, walks around the desk, and after asking the wife to stand, he embraces and kisses her long and passionately as her husband watches with a raised eyebrow.

The woman shuts up and quietly sits down as though in a daze.

The therapist turns to the husband and says, “This is what your wife needs at least three times a week. Can you do this?”

“Well, I can drop her off here on Mondays and Wednesdays, but on Fridays, I fish.”

Wednesday, July 31, 2019

What Does A Lava Lamp Look Like When Shaken? A Tradition.

Way back in the day, all my hippy dippy old Boomer friends had these things. 
I liked them and I guess there may have been a little hero worship built in.

So eventually, at a scratch and dent sale in Best Products (R.I.P.) on Woodhaven Road in Bensalem, I found one. 

Yoink.  It's been mine for ... decades I guess.

I had always been told "if you shake it, it will never be right again".

Being the "curious" type, I did.  It took about a week and a half to settle back to looking normal.

I mentioned it to a friend that you can do that.  Get the light all nice and hot and vigorously shake the thing.  It will turn solid red, or whatever color the wax is, and two weeks later, you will be right back to normal.

The response "NOOOOO!  Mr Bill!  Don't Shake Me!  NOOOOO!".

Never been one to take no for an answer here. 

I responded "So, what?  This is 'Don't Shake Me Bro?".

You can see the result.

At least I got a giggle out of that comment.

Granted this is from an older picture.  Every time that friend goes away, the last night before he goes, I shake the living daylights out of the Lava Lamp

Besides, it gives me something to look at and obsess over.

My friend is going to Douglas, The Isle Of Man for three weeks.  He'll hardly know it ever got shaken.

Tradition, my man, Tradition!