This is Luke, he’s an ex-racing greyhound who is both a regular client for massage and also one of Izzy’s friends.
During one of my massage sessions with Luke, his Mum and I talked about how he was jumping on and off the deck at the back of the house. Upon inspection, I could see that the steps were narrow and steep and this was causing Luke to jump to avoid them.
My first rule is to prevent injuries before they happen and I was worried that as Luke gets older, he could severely injure himself by missing the jump, misjudging the jump, or sliding awkwardly when the surface was wet and slippery. We discussed replacing the narrow steps with a much wider landing surface that would be safer.
I also recommend home adjustments for dogs to ensure that they are not putting unnecessary strain on their joints and soft tissues. Over time, these stresses and strains cause wear and tear and, ultimately, arthritis.
Luke’s Mum and Dad have been working on the alterations over summer and they are now complete. Luke has a wide surface to turn upon with non-slip carpet tiles. The hand rail will keep him from jumping off the side and the humans in the house can hold onto it for their safety, too.
Kathleen Crisley, Fear-Free certified professional and specialist in dog massage, rehabilitation and nutrition/food therapy, The Balanced Dog, Christchurch, New Zealand
I often recommend activity toys, supportive dog beds, and mobility aids like ramps and stairs…is this going over the top? I don’t think so. This lady does some wonderful things for her dogs – it’s about giving them the best life you can afford.
What have you done for your dog lately?
Kathleen Crisley, specialist in dog massage, rehabilitation and nutrition/food therapy, Canine Catering Ltd, Christchurch, New Zealand
If you ask, I am sure many people would tell you that I tend to go a little overboard where my pets are concerned. (I know for sure my family would!) I tend to buy them things that I think will enrich their lives and make them happy.
I think in the case of my dogs, I wanted to make up for the bad lives they had early on. I also want them to have lives that is enriched by a wide variety of fun experiences. (What’s the fun in having a dog if you can’t enjoy the fun they have with you?)
So while I do have a logic behind what I do for my pets, I also know that I am not the norm.
After all, I …
Buy dog games for my dogs, just so they can work their brains on a cold winter’s night.
The San Francisco SPCA has issued a warning for all dog owners: exercise caution when taking your dog with you on an escalator.
The SPCA’s two hospitals regularly receive emergency visits by dogs injured on escalators. The majority of cases are small breed dogs who are riding on escalators at BART stations (the rapid transit/commuter services in the San Francisco area) or at shopping malls.
However, any size dog can be injured on an escalator.
Injuries are usually to the paws, often requiring toes to be amputated.
Prevention is easy:
Use stairs or elevators (lifts) as opposed to escalators