Update on Lucy, the chicken with vertigo

Last week, I told you about my chicken Lucy, who was diagnosed by a vet with vestibular disturbance.In other words, Lucy had vertigo.I didn't want to share the photo of her in the corner last Friday, because it upset me to see Lucy in such distress. But now that she's on the mend you can see how sick she was. She'd tuck her head between her legs, and then shake her head vigorously on the ground, probably to try and make sense of her reeling world. Once we separated her from the flock, … [Read more...]

Taking my chicken to the vet, and other dizzying thoughts

The receptionist gave me the total for the office visit: $66.47. More than I'd expected but I was glad for the diagnosis of vestibular disturbance. For a while, it looked like death was imminent, so I was grateful that this was something we could treat with medication and rest.Did I mention that I'm talking about my chicken?I went out to the chicken run yesterday morning and noticed that one of my Polish hens, Lucy, was acting weirdly, bending her head down between her legs, and shaking … [Read more...]

My dog eats a live bird (musings on animals doing what animals do)

My dog Bailey was just outside, just hanging out in the grass, enjoying the evening air. She'd been outside maybe ten minutes when I went out to bring her in and saw that she had something pinned to the ground...it was a bird. I called to her, she moved towards me, and the bird jumped away. Bailey went after the bird, pinned it, and let it go. It hopped, she pinned it again. When it flew up about a foot, Bailey leaped up and caught it midair.And the race was on. I told her to drop the bird, … [Read more...]

Cruelly abused German Shepherd gets second chance

One of the down sides of covering animal issues is the tidal wave of stories about abused and tortured animals that cross your desk daily. It can really take a toll on your spirit, and for that reason I have to confess that when I see pictures of horribly tortured animals in my newsfeed I often have to quickly scroll past. Not because I don't care, but because the images keep me up at night. It's overwhelming for me to feel so helpless, and I imagine for readers as well.So when I saw this … [Read more...]

The dangers of leaving your dog in the car – it’s hotter than you think

Here in Western NY, the weather has finally warmed up and it looks like the s-n-o-w is gone until winter. That means it's time for a reminder about leaving your dog in a hot car.In July 2011, I wrote a post for my blog in which I explained how heat affects your dog, and then did some experiments measuring the temperature in the car compared with the temperature outside the car. It's worth reposting here, since it's such an important issue - and because I think we have a moral responsibility t … [Read more...]

Auction fundrasier includes puppy; should live animals be given away as prizes?

There's a discussion going on among some of my Facebook friends about a local charity raising money with a silent auction that includes one "Golden" dog owner package, complete with a new Goldendoodle puppy.The organization is CURE Childhood Cancer Association, which "provides emotional, educational, and financial assistance to area families whose children are treated in the oncology and hematology department at Golisano Children's Hospital" at Strong Memorial Hospital in Rochester, N.Y. … [Read more...]

Indigo, Orphan pups and a gift of Mercy – a heartwarming dog rescue tale

Here in Rochester, NY we're fortunate to have a wonderful animal group, Pitty Love Rescue, that does remarkable work rescuing, rehabing and rehoming pit bulls and pit mixes. They, along with other great groups in our area, are advocates for responsible dog ownership and a well-trained dog community. There are sad stories - puppy mills, overcrowded shelters, abandoned dogs. Working in the inner city, and especially with such a misunderstood breed, can really take its toll on volunteers.So I ju … [Read more...]

Kitty endures a cycle in the washing machine and lives to meow about it

They say cats have nine lives. If it's really true, Natasha the kitty used one on an adventure in the washing machine. She survived an entire wash cycle, and came out fluffier in the process.Natasha,  a six-month-old Siberian Forest kitten, has always been curious about the washing machine, her owner Daryl Humdy told Veterinary Pet Insurance Co. (VPI). He didn't think being curious about the washing machine meant the cat would ever get into the washing machine. But one day last year, Daryl's … [Read more...]

Vote for the most unusual pet insurance claim in the 2012 VPI Hambone Awards

Veterinary Pet Insurance Co. is getting ready to award the 2012 Annual Hambone Award, and  you get to pick the winner!Named after a dog that ate an entire Thanksgiving ham while stuck in a refrigerator, the VPI Hambone Award has since been presented for three equally unusual claims. Past winners include Ellie, a Labrador retriever who gobbled up an entire beehive and its thousands of inhabitants; Lulu, a hungry bulldog who swallowed 15 baby pacifiers, a bottle cap and piece of a basketball; … [Read more...]

Pit bull shot by sheriff’s deputies; community responds

There's a hot controversy stirring here in my hometown of Rochester, NY. I confess I'm late coming to the story, being wrapped up as I am in family tree research. But I've finally had time to catch up and ... well, it's quite a story. Here's what happened.Last Friday, June 2, two Monroe County Sheriff deputies responded to a call at a home in the Rochester suburb of Perinton, NY. News reports say the officers were responding to a call for a car blocking a driveway at the home of Gary … [Read more...]


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