Wednesday, 3 September 2008

The Lurchers

We haven't had a blog about the Lurchers for ages so I shall remedy that today.

You may remember back in July that Lurcher No.1 had not been very well. She'd had two nasty bouts of throwing up and was obviously in some discomfort. We had repeated visits to the vet and, after blood tests, she was diagnosed with pancreatitis.

Both The Lurchers had been fed on a raw food diet but as this had quite a high fat content, something had to give. I now have Lurcher No.1 on a food called Fish4Dogs. It doesn't come cheap but that's OK because neither is the Hills Presription Diet the vet originally suggested we put her on. Plus it has the bonus of being a natural food with no additives or other crappy stuff in it that's tested on animals. Don't get me wrong, if there had been no alternative I would have put my morals aside for the sake of Lurcher No.1's health, I'm just glad there are alternatives.

So, how is she now and has the change of diet worked? I'll say!

For about the last 18 months I have been saying that she is getting old and that's why she is slowing down and always lagging behind on walks, even though she was only 7 then and 8 now. With the benefit of hindsight, I can see that she has obviously been suffering with this pancreatitis for all that time, at least, suffering enough that she was uncomfortable but not poorly enough that it was making her physically ill. I think that deep down I knew this lethargy couldn't be put down to jsut her reaching middle age but I'd mentioned it to my vet a few times and although we hadn't had bloods done, there was nothing obviously wrong when they poked and prodded her. And short of doing every possible test going, we'd have been searching for a needle in a haystack.

But now? She has, over the last few weeks, gradually started getting fitter and fitter. Firstly by responding positively when Lurcher No.2 wanted to play and then actually initiating play with him - you could see her start running and look back at him saying "chase me, chase me!". And last night? We had been walking through the woods and came out onto the open golf course. Suddenly she just took off and ran flat out in a big circle, just for the sheer joy of it, and then came back to me with the biggest, happiest grin on her face!

And did I shed a tear or two? Quite possibly.

It took a physical manifestation of the illness for us to be able to dignose the problem and a part of me wishes that perhaps we should have done tests earlier, particularly as she was in the right age bracket for pancreatitis. But hindsight is all very well and although I have a certain amount of guilt to deal with, seeing her back to her old self does mitigate that guilt a little. But we were lucky, now that we are aware of the situation and it's under control everything is fine. If we hadn't got it under control another attack could have killed her.

So learn from us, if you think your pet is not right, even if you can't put a finger on why, talk to your vet. Your ramblings may not make sense to you but they may to them, and it may save your pet's life.


  1. Angela that must have been a wonderful moment to know that she can run and frolic. I don't think you should feel any guilt, you did everything you could once you knew what the problem was and you now have a happy dog.

  2. After lying in bed for over a week, sick as a, if you'll excuse the expression, dog, this entry totally cheered me up.
    I could just envision her running flat out on that golf course. Such a happy story today. Thank you.

  3. That's wonderful, Angela. So glad to hear she's responding well. It always gives me that kind of joy, too, when my dogs are obviously happy.

    Don't feel guilty; I say good for you and the vet for figuring it all out and putting her back on the road to feeling fit and healthy.

  4. She is lucky that you stuck with it and came up with the solution! I bet she smiles at you all the time!

  5. I'm wondering if I should get "ME" some of that dog food.. ha ha ha ha.

  6. I'm so glad she's feeling better! And that is very very good advice indeed!

  7. I love it when they run for the sheer hell of it like that - knowing they feel so good and happy they have to let it out or explode is a joy to share!

    I have to talk to the vet about my old girl today - I don't think it's the end of the road yet, but we're nearing the final corner. :(

  8. That's great news for her, better late than never, I understand the guilt though.

  9. I’m relieved for you that you’ve found out what ails Lurcher No. 1 … and that changing her diet has helped. My Molly almost didn’t make it out of puppyhood until we tried IVD Duck & Sweet Potato food. Apparently she has a very sensitive stomach and can’t tolerate regular foods. The Innovative Veterinary Diet isn’t cheap, but it contains nothing BUT duck & sweet potato and keeps her healthy … so that’s all she ever gets to eat. Fortunately she likes (and thrives on) it! I'm happy you've found a solution to No. 1's problems!
    Hugs and blessings,


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