Archive for September, 2009

A Dog’s Purpose (from a 6-yr-old)

BulldogAngel“Being a veterinarian, I had been called to examine a ten-year-old Irish Wolf hound named Belker. The dog’s owners, Ron, his wife Lisa, and their little boy Shane, were all very attached to Belker, and they were hoping for a miracle.

I examined Belker and found he was dying of cancer. I told the family we couldn’t do anything for Belker, and offered to perform the euthanasia procedure for the old dog in their home.

As we made arrangements, Ron and Lisa told me they thought it would be good for six-year-old Shane to observe the procedure. They fe! lt as t hough Shane might learn something from the experience.

The next day, I felt the familiar catch in my throat as Belker’s family surrounded him. Shane seemed so calm, petting the old dog for the last time, that I wondered if he understood what was going on. Within a few minutes, Belker slipped peacefully away.

The little boy seemed to accept Belker’s transition without any difficulty or confusion. We sat together for a while after Belker’s Death, wondering aloud about the sad fact that animal lives are sho! rter th an human lives. Shane, who had been listening quietly, piped up, ‘I know why.’

Startled, we all turned to him. What came out of his mouth next stunned me. I’d never heard a more comforting explanation.

He said, ‘People are born so that they can learn how to live a good Life — like loving everybody all the time and being nice, right?’ The Six-year-old continued, ‘Well, dogs already know how to do that, so they don’t have to stay as long.'” (unknown author).

© – 2009 – All rights reserved.

Why Spay and Neuter Your Dog?

Thanks to everyone who sent in their questions (keep them coming). The most asked Vet-related question for the month of August 2009 was:

“Why should I have my dog spayed/neutered when they are supposed to be on leash?” and thanks to Vet Tech, Nicolle Lejeune at McKenzie Veterinary Services for providing us with the following very thorough and helpful answer.

First, even though your dog may be on a leash doesn’t mean all other dogs are on a leash, or under the control of their owners. These dogs can still gain access to your dog.

Second there are medical and behavioral benefits to having your dog altered, which will only improve the quality your pets’ health. According to the BCSPCA spaying a female dog will help reduce the chances of uterine infections and breast cancer. Neutering your male dog also reduces the chance of testicular cancer or prostate disease.

Behavioral advantages to the procedure include eliminating the unwanted behavior of wandering or showing aggression towards other dogs of the same sex. This occurs because the desire to seek an active mate is no longer present. With female dogs heat cycles are no longer present, which means a cleaner house for you. In males the desire to mark their territory will diminish as well. YEAH no more lifting his leg on the couch or the curtains!

Another positive outcome, is that your dog won’t be focused on his or her sex drive they will tend to focus more on their owner and family which makes the deal sweeter for both you and your dog!” – Nicolle Lejeune, Vet Technician *

Also…it costs less to license a spayed or neutered dog!

*The information in this column is not meant to serve as a diagnosis but rather a starting point for understanding and investigating concerns related to your dog. A physical exam and assessment of your dog by a veterinarian is essential.*

© – 2009 – All rights reserved.