Life with Jasmine and Juliet, Our Rescued Dachshunds

Random notes on our experience with our two rescued miniature dachshunds

We All Scream for Ice Cream!

We were out running errands yesterday, and we decided to take Jasmine along to help socialize her to new situations. After we were finished with our errands, we decided to get some treats at the local frozen custard/ice cream shop.

When I was waiting for my order (Jasmine was outside with Tom), I asked the counter person if they had anything that was safe for dogs. He said that their frozen custard was what he usually gave to dogs–with no issues or complaints. He gave me a small portion in a cup, and I went outside to sit and eat my treat and give Jasmine her first taste of frozen delight.

It was hot yesterday–over 90 degrees. Jasmine and I sat in the shade, and I placed her cup in front of her. She sniffed the custard a little, then began lapping it. And lapping it. Boy did she like it!

Tom came out with his treat and I handed him Jasmine’s custard cup. She ran right over to him and began lapping up the treat. Now, she usually doesn’t like to go near him, but for frozen custard, well, she even let him pet her! Whooooo hooooooo!

I decided to look for the Frosty Paws doggie ice cream in the local PetCo, but they don’t carry it anymore. After looking at the ingredient list online, I decided that I’d rather make something for her instead. After reading a bunch of recipes online for doggie ice cream, this is what I’ve made for her:

Margaret’s Doggie FroYo

32 ounces plain yogurt (with active cultures)
1 small jar baby bananas
1 small jar baby applesauce
3 tablespoons honey

Whisk everything together and spoon into serving cups. I made 1 ounce portions and placed them into 2-ounce portion cups (available from food service supply places like Smart and Final) with lids. Freeze. When serving, zap for a few seconds in the microwave to soften.

Jasmine licked the unfrozen mix off my finger, so I know she’ll like it even more when frozen.

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Thank Goodness for Little Dogs

My father passed away a couple of days ago. We were on our way to Boston to visit family, and when we arrived in Los Angeles for our connecting flight, I turned on my cell phone. I had three voice messages. And I got the news. We were lucky to be able to turn around and fly home without too much trouble.

The next morning, we went to make the funeral arrangements. We then went to pick up Jasmine from the kennel.

Those who say pets reduce our stress levels and enhance our lives are SO right. When we got home late Tuesday/early Wednesday, the house was empty without her. Petting her, taking care of her, having her by my side is so soothing and great. Even though I don’t have much to smile about, she can make me smile just by being herself.

I’m so glad she came to us. While I know that we have given her a much better life, I think we got the better end of the bargain. Words can’t express how much she’s added to our lives.

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Third Time’s a Charm. NOT!

Yes, Jasmine had to go back to the vet again yesterday. Her left paw, which had been infected, has healed really beautifully. There’s no sign of infection at all. However, I noticed this morning that her right paw was all swollen! NOOOOOOOO! I also noticed a distinct musky/yeasty scent coming off of her that I remember from owning dogs in the past–that “ear infection” smell.

So, off to the vet we went. I really like my vet–Dr. Kirsten Krick at the West Valley Pet Clinic. She’s very gentle with Jasmine, and she seems to do what is in the best interest of the dog while taking cost and impact on the dog’s well being into account.

This time, there wasn’t an infection in the paw. Jasmine apparently was the unfortunate recipient of some kind of insect bite or sting. I had a feeling…there have been lots of bees and wasps in the yard, and they’ve also been hovering amongst the clover in the lawn. I think Jasmine might have stepped on one. Jasmine was treated for both the sting and the ear issues (yeast infection in the ear). She has to go back for a check in a week.

While I really like the vet, I wish we wouldn’t have to go so often!

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My Little Scavenger

We went to visit my father in the care facility on Saturday (as we do every weekend). We get together every week to have a meal and visit, and my Mom enjoys getting out and about as well. We’ve been taking Jasmine with us to both socialize her (she now is less hesitant about wheelchair ramps and elevators) and to cheer up my dad.

I cooked a nice meal this weekend, including a Taiwanese chicken dish we all like. Dad dropped a couple of pieces on the floor when he was eating, and all of a sudden the “no table food” rule kind of flew out of the window. Jasmine greatly enjoyed the chicken pieces, and dad had a scavenger dog sniffing around his wheelchair. I guess Jasmine is over her wheelchair fear! 🙂 Now I know what to use as a high-value treat for training. But I wonder if she’ll eat the chicken without the garlic/ginger/sesame oil/soy sauce infusion? She is SUCH a picky eater!

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Dog Attack!

When we were out for our evening walk yesterday, Jasmine was attacked by a Welsh Corgi that had escaped from its home. It ran across the street, and since it didn’t have a collar, I couldn’t grab it to stop the attack. It jumped on Jasmine and tried to bite her…oh man did it scare us!

Tom snatched up Jasmine, which scared her even more. She doesn’t like people grabbing her quickly or making fast moves, and Tom just snatched her up to save her. She was a nervous wreck (complete with a bit of incontinence). The owner of the Corgi was across the street, and her only comment was, “Oh sorry, I didn’t know she got out.” I was really pissed off. Her dog almost took a chunk out of my dog’s butt…and all she could think of to say or do is to make some lame excuse? Grrrrrrr…

We put little Jazzy down and finished our walk. I think I was more upset than she was! 😦

Another goal for obedience school (for me, that is) is learning what to do in these situations. Yipes!

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Ewwww! Pooooooo!

I took Jasmine out this morning for her usual “business.” All of a sudden, I smelled something bad. I checked my shoes. I looked around–Jasmine hadn’t done anything. Hm.

Every morning, I brush Jasmine before we go back in the house. I started to brush her and noticed that stench again. Yup, it was definitely coming from her. She lifted her chin, and I saw it. Caked all along the bottom of her collar was a smear of poo. EWWWWWW!

I had noticed her rolling around in the grass this morning–something she usually does. Well, it seems that my sweet little doggie decided that cat poop was an appropriate thing to roll in. Now, I’ve heard of people complaining that their dog will roll around in any vile, disgusting thing it can find (ostensibly to mask their own scent), but I hadn’t had the pleasure of experiencing it for myself.

I put Jasmine in the utility sink in the laundry room and gave my pooch her first bath. It wasn’t so bad–for her or me–but she trembled through the whole thing. She was good, though, and didn’t squirm so much. I got her clean (she was smelling a bit doggy and needed a bath anyway) and dry, and she didn’t hold it against me. She got a cheese treat for her trouble.

Now, getting the poop off the collar and leash, well, that was a bit more difficult. Thank goodness for the Nature’s Miracle stuff…it took the scent right out.

I hope she doesn’t do this again, but I have a feeling that she will.

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Squirrel!

Jasmine is starting to change. Every day, she gains a little bit more confidence.

We’ve noticed that instead of just looking ahead and trotting, Jasmine is starting to look at and sniff the neighborhood during our walks. Yesterday and today, Jasmine was sniffing furiously as we walked down the block. She never noticed other animals during our walks before–even cats–and she has been noticing both cats and other dogs for the last few days.

After our walk, we usually sit on the lawn in front of the house and watch the world go by. Jasmine usually just faces me and gives me puppy eyes to get ear scratches. Today, however, she was laying down and watching everything. Her little ears were perked up, and she was watching the cars go by, the birds hopping around in the yard, and yes, a little bushy-tailed squirrel that was foraging for food.

The squirrel was about 25 feet away under the tree on the sidewalk. He was hopping around and moving towards the giant palm tree in the front yard. Jasmine, who has ignored squirrels to date, was entranced. She was tense, ears were perked, and she seemed to be ready to pounce. And pounce she did. All of a sudden, she rocketed out of her position laying on the ground and ran after the squirrel. He darted, she dashed–that is, until she hit the end of the leash. She jerked her head and stopped, turned back at me, and bounded back.

It made me so happy to see her alert and…well…bouncy! Go Jasmine!

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Shiver Shiver

Jasmine sometimes shivers and shakes. I don’t know if it’s because she’s cold, afraid, happy or wants attention.

Our routine is that we get up in the morning and we go outside. She relieves herself, I praise her, and then she gets brushed. She loves to be brushed. She sits right in front of me and enjoys the contact and the feel of the brush. However, she also sits there and shakes and shivers. It’s a little chilly in the morning these days, but it’s not cold. She also shivers when she’s afraid of my husband, as well as sitting in the yard after a long, pleasant walk.

Maybe it’s like goosebumps? A seizure? A prelude to a doggy full-body shake? Or is she just nervous for some reason that I can’t fathom?

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Grrrr…

Jasmine has started to growl at times. She growls when people come into her territory–that includes the house and the yard. Today, someone was walking by our house as we were sitting on the front lawn. Had the person just walked by, I don’t think Jasmine would have growled. However, the person said hello, and then…”grrrrr.”

Jasmine growled at a friend who came to visit the other day, and she sometimes growls at my husband! Yipes! We’re starting obedience school after Labor Day weekend, so I hope to address that issue (as well as others) then.

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Love That String Cheese

So, after another expensive trip to the vet ($162), Jasmine is now on a month’s course of antibiotics. Instead of the liquid, the vet recommended we try pills (Jasmine was, um, unreliable with the liquid due to the “spit” factor). I tried the “put it in the back of the tongue and rub the throat” trick that used to work with some of the dogs I had in the past. Nope. Cough. Cough. Spit. Out came the pill. *sigh*

Next up was cheese. Since Jasmine’s favorite cheese (no, she is not a gourmet dog and likes plain old Kraft American cheese) only comes in sheets, I decided to try some string cheese. Bingo! I cut a small hunk off the end, opened a hole in it with my knife, placed the pill in the pocket and mushed up the cheese to completely encase the pill. Gobble. All gone. It worked again this morning.

This is much better than having to wedge her mouth open and squirt vile-tasting liquid into her mouth.

The problem is that TWO vets went probing into her paw again yesterday (she was sedated), and again, they weren’t able to find the foreign body that’s in her paw. It’s frustrating. There must be something in there to make her paw swollen and puss-filled. For now, I’ll keep the compresses going and hope for the best.

The good news is that Jasmie is finally putting on a little weight. She’s now a little over 10 pounds, and her coat is getting softer every day.

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