A Long Night For Gus And Us

Discussion in 'Off-Topic & Chit Chat' started by running_dog, Oct 24, 2012.

  1. Adrianna & Calvin Experienced Member

    What a beauty Gus is! Yes the t-shirt helped my dog post-histiocytoma removal; the incision was a bit above his armpit, perfect for scratching with the back foot, but he was somewhat inhibited by the shirt. When I had an elderly Springer with a skin infection, I bought her a few $8 sweaters online and let her tear those up (scratching) rather than her own skin.

    Biopsy results will probably be available early next week? Please do update, we'll be thinking of you!
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  2. running_dog Honored Member

    The photo I posted before does make Gus look bigger than he really is, I think he's quite small but our previous dog was a deerhound cross so anything smaller than a great dane or wolfhound feels quite small/ordinary to me. He's certainly small for a lab but he's a very solid dog.

    A photo of space dog


    A&C - He's wearing my old t'shirts at the moment but you're right sweaters would help even more because they are thicker so he'd do less damage.

    Gus tries so hard to be good, sometimes he starts to scratch and then stops and comes over so I can stroke the place that itches. Sometimes of course the itch is just too much for him to resist, I can't blame him.

    They think it'll be a fortnight for the biopsy results so that'll be another week :-(

    He's definitely decided he's at the recuperative stage so we're having to work hard to keep him quiet as he wants to charge around and mug Zac and play tug and chase his ball and do all those things that make a doggy life worthwhile...

    Thanks again everyone :-)
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  3. MaryK Honored Member

    Poor baby, the stitches must be itching a lot now. At least he's trying to be good. And he hasn't destroyed his collar either!(y)

    That's the hard stage, when they feel fine again. Hope you can keep the patient quiet, as the vets always say. Maybe some puzzle toys?

    Stay positive, one week's already past. Sending loving thoughts to you all.
  4. running_dog Honored Member

    GOOD NEWS!!!!!

    We got the biopsy result for Gus and the lump was NOT cancer.

    LOL the vets probably caused the lump themselves with one of their injections, I don't even care as long as he's okay.

    MaryK - I'm afraid we cheated a bit as far as keeping Gus quiet was concerned and kept him on a low dose of the pain killer as it made him a bit dopey, otherwise he was doing zoomies, leaping in your face, play fighting Zac, doing forward rolls, trying to turn himself inside out to reach the tag on the t'shirt... and scratching like a demented squirrel. At least we know he feels alright in himself! He certainly knows how to manipulate us - he always scratches if I'm eating a snack because he's hoping to get a treat when I tell him to stop, and he scratches if Zac is sitting where he wants to sit.

    All being well the rest of the stitches come out on Monday (despite supervision all day and all night he's already removed half of one by himself :rolleyes:).
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  5. jackienmutts Honored Member

    Oh thank goodness!!!!! Hooray!!!! I know you feel so fabulous now, just knowing your boy is ok!! :LOL::ROFLMAO: I'm so000 glad!!! You can have a good weekend now, and it will be a bit easier, knowing you can keep him from scratching, and when those dastardly stitches come out, this whole ordeal is just OVER like a bad dream!!!!!! BIG SIGH OF RELIEF HERE!!!! Have a good weekend!!!!! (y):LOL::cool:
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  6. Dogster Honored Member

    YAY!!!!!!!:D:D I'm SO glad Gus is okay!!!!:) I bet you both can't wait until this whole thing is over, LOL.
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  7. running_dog Honored Member

    I feel a little like I've been given another chance with Gus, he irritates me so much as he's such an in your face dog that I'd never choose and don't really like having around. But that's not his fault and I'd truly never have wished any of this on him, the first day when he was so terrified was utterly dreadful.

    If this is a second chance maybe I can work more things out with him this time.

    Have a good weekend too Dogster, Jackie (BTW loved Makena's nosework article) and everyone!!!!

    Thanks to everyone who's commented and followed along :-)
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  8. MaryK Honored Member

    HOORAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! So very, very happy to hear the grand news!:D:D(y)

    Well we all have to cheat a little sometimes, when it's in a good cause, I know JUST what you went through with the stitches, Ra Kismet was a holy terror with his (de-sexing ones) and you should have seen his collar, in pieces!!!!!!!!!! Had them removed at 10 days, fortunately all had healed, but if I hadn't them he would have ripped them out himself. The collar wasn't going to hold together another day longer! LOL the vets asked if I wanted to keep it. I took one look at the mangled collar and said no, don't think I want any reminders of the last 10 days:D

    Yes, it's a kind of 'wake up' call as to how much you really love your 'in your face' dog:D It's definitely a second chance, enjoy it, you and Gus will 'get there'.:D

    You've made my weekend, what's left of it:D
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  9. running_dog Honored Member

    I'm glad we made your weekend, LOL Gus certainly doesn't give me all that much time to think loving thoughts.

    On Saturday he lunged at a dog running past and exploded the bag of dog poo I was holding all over me and him...

    Then he was appalling to walk this morning, almost dragged me into the road, lunged at people, lunged at dogs, wouldn't listen to anything, and I almost hated him again.

    Then he was an absolute angel to walk this afternoon, hardly pulled once, walked past people beautifully and looked at me expectantly for a reward, he learned "back" in just a few minutes.

    He's like the nursery rhyme about the little girl with the curl in the middle of her forehead, when she was good she was very good and when she was bad she was awful. Or maybe that is my training :-(

    And they only took half the stitches out... Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaargh... the nightmare of leash walking and under exercise continues

    But I'm glad to have a second chance however difficult I find him.
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  10. Dogster Honored Member

    Oh no......:(

    I think if nothing works, you should keep giving him treats for good behaviour. I try to take a bag of treats on every walk, because you never know...

    I hope everything goes well, :D
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  11. MaryK Honored Member

    :ROFLMAO: sorry running -dog but I can just imagine Gus and the exploding poop bag:eek:

    Seriously, it must have been ghastly and so frustrating for you, and um somewhat messy!:eek:

    Dogster has made a very good point, take your treats and clicker on your walks. I do this all the time, especially since the incident when Ra Kismet and I were attacked by another dog and he's been over reacting. He's almost 'there' now, looks for his treats rather than over reacting, and that's in just around two months. If you really cannot get to click, then treat, treat,treat. I have the clicker in my right hand, same hand I hold the lead, so I have a free hand to treat. I use the cue 'look at me' and click./treat like crazy. Along with, now he's so much calmer, chill little buddy I've got your back:)

    LOL Ra Kismet is still a little bit like Gus, the odd moment when he attempts to lunge (doesn't go the whole hog now though resets himself and prances along looking for his treat) then next day or later the same day, walks like a total angel, ignoring other dogs. He's always been fine with people, just a nosy parker if they're doing something interesting, like putting out the trash, opening/closing their front doors etc., but never lunges.

    Good luck! Gus will one day surprise you and become 'Angel Dog" never lunging, bursting poop bags or anything untoward.:D

    And it's not your training, some dogs just take a little more time than others to catch on too good manners:confused::oops::rolleyes:O_o LOL love the reference to the nursery rhyme, good one, something all dog lovers/trainers should remember!
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  12. Dogster Honored Member

    Oh yeah, I forgot! LOL at the exploding poop bag:ROFLMAO: :sick: Was probably not so funny for you when it happened...
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  13. 648117 Honored Member

    We always say this about Holly too!
    and she actually does have a curl in the middle of her forehead :LOL:

    Here she is with her curl eating all the tulips out of our garden (yea, she got the one in the background too, she got them ALL in the end):

    and yet she can also be a little angel, especially in public so that everyone thinks she's "such a nice little dog", but they don't know how awful she can be...

    Good luck with Gus, I'm sure he'll start to mature a bit soon and settle down :)
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  14. jackienmutts Honored Member

    Oh RD, sooo sorry about the bad walks - that exploding poop bag just makes me *shudder*! :eek: I've so been there, walking the lunging, barking dog, being dragged places, and feeling .. well .. less than desirable feelings toward my dog. :confused: Those words really took me back - altho thankfully haven't felt like that in quite a long time. Whew! Do keep in mind that when they're acting out like that (not listening to you) that they actually can't hear you (talk to the paw, cuz the ears ain't listenin'). Do lots of treating when he's being good, and lots of treating right before that 'thing' that sets him off is about to set him off. Then drag him by whatever it is, as fast as you can. You know the drill. Then keep repeating the mantra ... I can hold on, things will get better. :oops::ROFLMAO: Truly, they will.

    If I can recommend one book (not for reactivity, but for just overall life with a "naughty" dog (translation: any young - or otherwise - dog like that girl with a curl in the poem), get Kathy Sdao 's book "Plenty In Life Is Free". Just a good reminder to constantly reward our dogs all thru the day for all they do RIGHT - cuz it will flow over into all areas. Hang tough and just keep being consistent, cuz it WILL be ok!!! (y) (and in the meantime, you truly have my sympathy, cuz wow, can I ever identify!!) :LOL:
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  15. running_dog Honored Member

    Thank you all, sorry I've taken a while to reply.

    I bought some super strong (super expensive) poo bags, it seemed worth it!

    Dogster - Gus is more toy than treat motivated so mostly I reward him with tug rather than treats. In fact that was the real breakthrough with his lead training recently when I started rewarding him by letting him tug on the lead (with his teeth not his neck), I think it relieves his frustration too at not being able to go play with the other dogs or leap at all the children, treats didn't do that. His leave it is pretty good - which is just as well for the occasions when he grabs my finger or the leg of my trousers (plus leg) along with the rope - cue for "leave it" followed by me dancing around moaning in agony while Gus looks on with mild interest.

    Then today he decided he didn't care about tug, in fact he decided I didn't exist at all all over again. I did notice that most of his lunges didn't take him to the end of the lead though so maybe he has learned something. I think maybe he's feeling a bit off because he's had to go back on to the painkiller/anti-inflammatory to bring down the swelling behind his last few stitches.

    MaryK - I know it is partly my training as well as the dog and the situations, I can pick out reasons why that Saturday and that morning walk did not go well.

    I agree about taking the clicker on walks, I used to do that with Zac, but not so much recently. Two dogs is difficult when both need long walks and those walks can't always be separate, using a clicker with two dogs then gets really complicated (all those leads, clicker, treats, treat theft...)

    Today I asked people to keep their dogs away from Gus because he's sometimes reactive but he suddenly decided he loved every dog in the world (instead of his usual greeting of a very nasty bark and lunge) so they all looked at me like I was an idiot. Still it helped make most of them keep their dogs away.

    Jackienmutts - Apart from using tug not treats I've been trying to do almost exactly what you describe so hopefully we are on the right track. Just sometimes I end up over my threshold let alone him being over his! LOL he is a NICE dog, he's very sensitive when he's not being oblivious. I'm sure if you had him he'd be lovely. Me, I'm just not patient enough but he didn't choose me any more than I chose him so we'll just have to muddle through.

    I did tell myself that he couldn't hear this morning and it made me feel better though he kind of gave the lie to that a few times!!

    I'll see if I can get the book through the library.

    LOL at Holly, and she really does have a curl! Gus picked all Mum's tulips too, come to think of it Zac did too when he was a pup. I wonder what it is about tulips?
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  16. MaryK Honored Member

    :ROFLMAO: sorry but you have such a way of describing events I just cannot help laughing like crazy! But I can TOTALLY emphasize with you on the leg biting and leave, though mine was my hand and I too danced around in agony while Ra Kismet looked on in bored bewilderment.:whistle:

    Also, with warning people to stay away. When they do he looks and behaves like a total Angel and they look at me as if I'm heading for the funny farm. So I do understand, it's just you're so funny in the way you tell the story.

    Seriously, can understand why it's hard to clicker train with two dogs when out walking. Fortunately, in some ways, because Zeus is so much older and has Cushings (even though it's well under control) he lost some leg muscle during the initial stages, so I am having to walk both dogs separately until he builds up muscle strength again. Even then, not sure I want to do that until Ra Kismet is fully able to stop over-reacting. Though Zeus is 'bomb proof' so maybe having him with Ra Kismet would let Ra Kismet see that over reaction is totally unnecessary. They say 'hope springs eternal' I think dog trainers really rely on that saying to be true!:LOL:
  17. mewzard Experienced Member

    I'm so glad Gus is ok! He's cute, the fluffy coat makes them seem bigger too.
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  18. running_dog Honored Member

    LOL wanted to get and read the book Jackie recommended before posting again on this thread but royal mail is being soooooooooooooooooooooo slooooooooooooooooooooooooooooow!

    Thanks Mewzard :-)

    Mary - I wanted you to laugh. I laugh at that sort of thing too. Even when I'm yelping in agony/scraping off poop I can hear the way my friends are going to laugh. But I get my own back because I laugh at their doggie incidents too :-)

    See if you can get a laugh from this one... Me sitting on floor typing into laptop, Gus lying beside me calmly mouthing a tug toy, there's a sudden splintering sound and I refocus from the screen to find that as well as the tug toy the corner of the laptop is in Gus's jaws with splinters falling off it! Thankfully most of them glued back on. So you can think of me typing away on a uniquely chewed laptop :-)

    A week later Gus's poodle blood brother, not to be outdone, put his teeth though a mobile phone.

    It's the repetitive grind of training rather than the crisis that get me down!

    But Gus has been super lead walking with me recently, he's still reactive at times but that's mostly obvious reasons like when we've walked round a corner and found a dog right there with no chance of avoidance or distraction. He walked great with me today with my friend and her dogs, though when angel puppy saw a strange dog and turned into raging monster my uninitiated friend nearly had a heart attack.

    I think having a bombproof dog along on walks does help sometimes. Funny thing is that Zac is bombproof invisible dog when I have Gus with me but when Zac's on his own he is much less bombproof and more demanding - "look there's a tree! I wanna see that tree! well what about that lamp post? Awwwwww come on, cut me some slack here!" When Gus is there Zac walks just behind my right hand occasionally touching my fingers when he thinks it is his turn for a treat. Zac is one of the nicest dogs, he was so gentle with Gus when he knew he'd been to the vets, he would sniff the stitches and then let Gus get away with things that usually would trigger a mad rough house. They're back to their normal rough housing now :-)
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  19. Dogster Honored Member

    Ohhh no... computer....LOL:cautious::ROFLMAO::ROFLMAO:

    I'm so glad Gus is getting better on walks!!! That's GREAT!!!:D
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  20. jackienmutts Honored Member

    Ohhhh NOOOoooooo, RD, I'm so sorry to laugh - but every time you post - I do!! :ROFLMAO: Naughty naughty!!!! Chewing on the laptop!!!! Crunch - noooooo!!!! Oh Gus, not the way to endear yourself at all. :confused: I just don't know what to say - besides I'm so sorry. :oops: I'm glad the walks are going better - I guess we find the happy little things wherever we can, huh? O_o:D
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