Shih Tzu Vet Update: Four Star Visit

I wanted to talk about flow­ers today, but Mom said I should talk about our annual vet exam we had yes­ter­day at Clear Creek Ani­mal Hos­pi­tal. First, Mom tricked us. She knows that when­ever we get in the car we think we’re going to the nice park for a walk, but we were wrong. It was too late to escape once we saw where she was really tak­ing us.

She was happy I didn’t get fright­ened and pee on the floor like I used to. How­ever, Nigel “marked” his visit and they had to rush to get a paper towel to clean it up. That’s prob­a­bly why he got to be exam­ined first. Before Dr. Lind­sey did that, though, we all got weighed. Candy weighs the least, at 13.40 pounds. When we came to live at the Freeze Hacienda after liv­ing at the puppy mill, she weighed 11 pounds. The doc­tor says she is a nice weight. Dot­tie is a lit­tle more “plump.” She weighs 18.40 pounds! The doc­tor wasn’t that con­cerned, though, since her weight has hardly changed over the last few years. Mom says she is a “big girl.” When Nigel came to live with us he had been very sick, and he only weighed 10.80 pounds. Now, how­ever, he weighs 14.40 pounds. Well, now I have to say what I weigh. I weighed 13.60 pounds in 2011. Now I weigh, gulp, 16.60 pounds. The assis­tant put me back on the scale because she didn’t think that was right, but it was. The vet says I should lose at least a pound so Mom says I am going to get less treats. Bummer!

We all got a Lep­tospiro­sis vac­ci­na­tion — what­ever that is. Mom and the vet talked about Nigel’s eye scare ear­lier this year. He had a corneal per­fo­ra­tion. We aren’t sure how well he sees out of it. I guess Mom needs to take him in for a checkup at the spe­cial­ist for that. Beyond that, she thought Nigel was pretty healthy.

Candy might have a food allergy and Dot­tie might too, because of some prob­lems with their ears. Candy’s ears are a lit­tle “thick” and Dot­tie has a lot of wax in hers. The vet asked if they itch them a lot. Mom said they used to but that she was clean­ing them (with Vet’s Best Ear Relief) and Candy and Dot­tie didn’t seem to be hav­ing a prob­lem lately. Dr. Lind­sey said that if it gets worse, Mom might have to do some food tests to see what food might be caus­ing the prob­lem. Dot­tie is 8 years old and her vision might not be as well as mine, but oth­er­wise, the vet said she was in good health. I don’t know why she didn’t say she needed to lose weight!

Besides the vet say­ing I need to lose a pound, she also said I have to go in to get my teeth cleaned. Ugh. I guess I have too much tar­tar on my teeth. Mom was dis­ap­pointed since the vet always told her how good our teeth looked. Mom thought our teeth were good because of the chew sticks she gives us, but they must not be help­ing my teeth. I hope that doesn’t hurt!

The good news was that the vet told Mom if she had gold stars, she would give them to us! So I guess we did pretty good!

 

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Thanksgiving #2 with the Shih Tzus (What a difference)

When I started to put together my post about this Thanks­giv­ing, I went back to see how our first Thanks­giv­ing with Candy, Dot­tie, Flower and Nigel was. I was amazed. We have def­i­nitely seen a lot of progress with our puppy mill shih tzus, although Nigel was as friendly to every­one as usual.

Dottie Flower Nigel Shih Tzu Thanksgiving 2012

I had to leave to pick up Mom at about 9:45. Before I did, I put a green sweater on Nigel, a pink and white dress on Candy, an ani­mal print sweater on Flower, and Dottie’s birth­day dress on her. When I started get­ting my boots on, Flower, Dot­tie and Nigel thought we were going for a walk, so they rushed me. (That wouldn’t have hap­pened last year, since I couldn’t get them to go on walks.) I didn’t put their har­nesses on them. I just opened the door and they all scram­bled out behind me. I’m sure they were a lit­tle dis­ap­pointed to find out they were only pick­ing up Grandma and com­ing right back.

Flower Shih Tzu eating Thanksgiving dinner.

Leti­cia and the kids arrived about 30 min­utes later. The female shih tzus went to their cor­ner. Once the din­ner was ready, I fixed them plates of turkey, sweet pota­toes and a lit­tle bit of mashed pota­toes and cran­berry sauce, and then I set all four bowls out­side. None of them hes­i­tated from rush­ing out­side and dig­ging in. The girls went back to their cor­ner but then couldn’t resist the smells and one by one, wan­dered up to the table, look­ing for scraps.

When it was time to take Mom back home, I asked Cea and Evita if they wanted to come along for the ride. It didn’t pre­vent Nigel, Flower and Dot­tie from once again trot­ting out to the car and get­ting in. Nigel sat on my mom’s lap until we dropped her off. I put one of the seats down, so Cea and Evita sat together and Flower and Dot­tie went between the other seat and the back of the car. Once I dropped off Mom, the girls came up front and Nigel sat with them. Flower got com­fort­able enough to sit on the con­sole, some­times fac­ing front­ward, and some­times turn­ing around.

Dottie Shih Tzu eating Thanksgiving dinner.

They were a lit­tle put off when Gabe, Crys­tal, Avi and Samuel showed up. Samuel is nearly one year old, and he wanted to play in the dog area. They didn’t seem to mind it very much, and they even­tu­ally did come out and start wan­der­ing around.

Candy Shih Tzu Thanksgiving 2012

On Sat­ur­day night, Aunt Betty and a friend came over. The females once again retired to their cor­ner, but about two hours later, they came out, with Candy even doing her “I want some­thing but can’t tell you what” dance. John reached down to pick up Flower, and she let him! He held her on his lap at the table for about 15 min­utes. They have come such a long way with him that I think he is now Dad and not the Man.

 

Be sure to check out last year’s Thanks­giv­ing blog to see what a dra­matic dif­fer­ence one year makes!

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Happy Birthday to Flower (Day 289) April 13

Happy Birth­day to you, Happy Birth­day to you, Happy Birth­day, Dear Flower! Happy Birth­day to You!
Flower is now 3 years old! This is Flower’s first birth­day at her for­ever home. She spent her first birth­day at a puppy mill and her sec­ond at a fos­ter home.
So glad that Flower, Candy and I have a For­ever Home together! Nigel too, although he didn’t come with us from the puppy mill!

Mom says she will have pic­tures later of our birth­day party, includ­ing the home­made chicken jerky!!

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Shih tzu Day Day 178: Christmas Eve

prepar­ing the shih tzus’ Christ­mas stockings

a female <strong srcset=shih tzu chewing on a steer stick. " width="300" height="225" />Flower or Candy woke us up at 3 a.m. bark­ing. John went down twice, but couldn’t tell what was going on. Candy was roam­ing around and scur­ried away. It might have been that she saw a mouse, a cat out­side or was just bark­ing at the falling snow. I finally gave up and got up at 4, fed them, and went back to sleep until 7, when Dot­tie started whining.

I came down­stairs, fed the shih tzus and wrapped a few presents. The female shih tzus sat at shih tzu Cen­tral and just watched me, won­der­ing what I was doing and why I wasn’t sit­ting on the couch. I also put the dogs’ names on their Christ­mas stock­ings with glit­ter. I had no idea how long it took the glit­ter to dry. The back of the pack­age said 30 min­utes, but it took a lot longer than that. I prob­a­bly put it on too thick. 

a <u srcset=shih tzu on a red and white dog bed." width="300" height="199" />I couldn’t fig­ure out what to do with their col­lars and tags, but John fig­ured out to put them around the mid­dle of the stock­ing instead of the top. I bought the shih tzus stuffed ani­mals from the Dol­lar Tree. I don’t like to spend too much money on their stuffed ani­mals, because I rarely see the shih tzus play­ing with them. I know they do play with them at times, because I will find them on the porch or on the couch. I also bought them some treats from the Dol­lar Tree and some from Petco. I bought a vari­ety of Christ­mas shaped rawhide treats from the rawhide treat bar. I also got them some bones from King Soop­ers’ meat department.

a female <strong srcset=shih tzu chewing on a steer stick. " width="300" height="225" />John, my mom and I nor­mally spend Christ­mas eve with my niece and her fam­ily, but since they moved to North Dakota this year, we cel­e­brated Christ­mas with my mother this after­noon at a Mex­i­can restau­rant near her house. When I started look­ing for Mon­ster High dolls for the grand­chil­dren, I started pick­ing extras up and sell­ing them on eBay and Craigslist, so I deliv­ered some of those before we came home.

a female <u srcset=shih tzu holding a steer stick. " width="300" height="225" />We spent a few hours with the shih tzus and then went out again. We did some last minute shop­ping, drove through some of the areas that are the most dec­o­rated for Christ­mas and stopped for a ham­burger before going home and spend­ing the rest of the evening with the shih tzus. I gave the shih tzus some steer sticks to keep them happy and busy while we watched TV.

I know they won’t be excited about their Christ­mas stock­ings, but I am. I love the fact that these four lit­tle shih tzus are part of our life and that we are spend­ing our first Christ­mas with them. I know that the girls prob­a­bly don’t have any mem­ory of their life at the puppy mill, or Nigel of his before he turned up at an ani­mal shel­ter, but I am glad we have been able to give them all a new life.

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Shih Tzu Day 128: Flower Kardashian

a shih tzu in a Christmas dress striking a sexy pose

shih tzu malady

I’m a lit­tle con­cerned. I found throw up on the floor down­stairs for the sec­ond day in a row, and I found some upstairs. I thought it was Flower, because of her breath, but John said he was pet­ting Candy and she threw up. I don’t think it was a reac­tion to him, so I have to think it is some­thing else! Candy does not act like she feels well. She bit my toes and fin­gers yes­ter­day in our morn­ing rit­ual, but she came to greet me today and didn’t do that.

The shih tzus eat a lot of rawhide bones, so is it that? I also gave them pieces of chicken last night. I had breaded it for a meal, but I tried to remove it all before I gave it to the shih tzu clan. Also, I gave them Alpo today, because I hadn’t made up any food. Candy acted like she wasn’t going to eat it at first, but I think that was because she is just finicky. All the shih tzus did end up eat­ing it.

nudge, nudge

Flower was sit­ting with me this morn­ing, but she jumped down from the couch. Pretty soon, I looked down and two cute lit­tle shih tzus, Candy and Flower, nudg­ing my feet. Good! Candy must feel bet­ter. Nigel was next to me, so I sent Mr. Male Shih Tzu down to play, to see if Candy was up for it. I couldn’t decide if she came to visit me or him. She just stood there while he tried to play, but then started bit­ing his face. My ail­ing shih tzu must have revived.

When Nigel tired of get­ting his face bit­ten, the ram­bunc­tious shih tzu wan­dered over to me and took my socks off, and then started bit­ing my toes. Flower fol­lowed his cue and came up and started bit­ing my fin­gers. What a bunch of lit­tle vampires!

Mar­cel, the shell, with shoes on

OK, this has noth­ing to do with shih tzus, but John called me today and told me he had been lis­ten­ing to Den­nis Miller on the radio and he was talk­ing about a super cute YouTube video about “Mar­cel the shell with shoes on.” He said there would soon be a book on Mar­cel. John knows I want to write a book about my expe­ri­ence with our for­mer puppy mill shih tzus, so he wanted to tell me about it. Mar­cel is almost as cute as my shih tzus, but not quite, so check it out!

shih tzus track­ing mud and shih tzus track­ing squirrels

The shih tzus tracked mud all over the floor today. Then, Nigel decided to get on the couch, so guess where the mud went. Groan. You’ll have that with a house full of shih tzus!

Part of the rea­son that the shih tzus kept going in and out was that Candy kept sniff­ing out a squir­rel. Squir­rel patrol requires a lot of in and out activ­ity. Out to check the where­abouts, and in — at least par­tially in the back door — to get shih tzu backup.

shih tzu turn­about is fair play

Flower spends so much time on the couch now that when Dot­tie asks to be let up some­times, Flower growls at her. Mean­while, in the kitchen, I wish I could teach Candy to scratch to come in like Nigel does. I get con­cerned about the amount of time our out­ward bound shih tzu spends out­side. I get up many times to check. She might be on the porch, but when I reach to open the door, she sprints out into the yard. Today, how­ever, she was sit­ting right by the door, and when I opened it, she came right in.

loud, quiet breathing!

There is some­thing very cute about the way Candy and Nigel tus­sle. I will be work­ing, and all of a sud­den, I will hear breath­ing. It’s actu­ally a kind of “quiet breath­ing.” But it is a hec­tic breath­ing. That heavy breath­ing will go on for many min­utes, as the shih tzu pup­pies play near the din­ing room table. It is always a lit­tle frus­trat­ing, because when I reach for my cam­era, they go on alert and the lit­tle bug­gers move on, so I have no proof of how incred­i­bly cute they are.

Flower Kar­dashian

Nigel is a very busy boy. Lately, he goes back and forth between both shih tzu “girl­friends.” Or are they sis­ters? I don’t know. But I wish I could get into the minds of these dogs. One of his girl friends looked par­tic­u­larly adorable today. I found the cutest lit­tle Christ­mas dress at Ross Dress For Less. It’s red, fur-trimmed, and has candy canes and orna­ments all over it. I tried it on Flower, although it is a lit­tle too early for Christ­mas doggy clothes. I was tak­ing pic­tures, and noticed that her dress was up, but I knew they would stop play­ing if I butted in and fixed it, so I just let it go. I was tak­ing pic­tures of her on the couch, and she was fac­ing towards Shih Tzu Cen­tral. She had a very cute butt beneath the cute dress and I thought of the Kar­dashi­ans. Yes, she is my adorable lit­tle Flower Kardashian.

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