Sunday, May 15, 2011

Castle Crags

I have been a good boy and I got to go to Dunsmuir and Castle Crags in Northern Cali with Ma and Pa. It was my first camping trip.
Our car looked like a Pyranha kayak commercial

We had our own private creek next to our campsite

I figured out how to ford creeks

Slummin' it -- the wayback was my bed
Ma and I went hiking while Pa kayaked
 Ma and I drove to Castle Crags State Park but they wouldn't let me in since I'm a dog. Drat! So instead, we drove to the National Forest nearby to hike the Pacific Crest Trail. They don't mind dogs and it was free, which was great. Who wants to pay $8 just to hike, anyway?
Waiting for Ma - I try not to get too far ahead, in fact,
in new territory, I try to follow rather than lead

All the little creeks were running
 We were looking for some waterfalls but we took a wrong turn. It didn't really matter - it was a fun adventure with fabulous views.
A lot of snow up thar mountains

The Trinity Alps
On the hike back, we encountered a rattlesnake! Lucky for me, I was behind Ma since I prefer to follow rather than lead in unknown territory. The snake was in some dry leaves off the side of the trail and he gave us a good rattle. We knew there was one other hiker behind us so Ma and I waited for him to catch up. He had a hiking stick which he used to distract the snake while we took a detour behind him. Of course, Ma had me vaccinated for rattlesnake venom so that should buy me some time if I'm struck - an awful thought, nonetheless.

All in all, we hiked about 4 hrs. When we got back to camp, we had some ~splainin' to do since Ma forgot to tell anyone where we were going or when we were planning to get back. The next day, we did some sightseeing with Pa. This was Pa's first time this far north in Cali.

A view of the Crags 

North Fork Castle Creek
So, be good, be safe and 'til my next misadventure, shake, rattle and roll over Mr. Viper, we're passing through.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Poisoned, hospitalized, survived!

I have been a good dog but had a traumatizing experience lately. I somehow got poisoned playing up in the grassy area at Ft Miley on Thursday, April 28th. Pa took me for an early evening walk and I met a white, furry, Spitz like dog named Bocchi who I played with while Pa and Bocchi's humans hung out at the BBQ area by the bunker. We had never met them before. Bocchi and I had a grand time -- we ran, rolled in the grass and hunted gophers. We were not successful in finding any vermin. There was some skateboarding activity and I got really spooked. But, according to Pa, my reaction was over the top for I wouldn't come to him when he called and I looked and acted strangely. You know my recall is close to 100%. It took Pa some time to get me and soon, it was time to head back home.  Bocchi and his humans decided to walk with us. While walking down the hill towards El Camino del Mar and up Seal Rock Drive, Bocchi started acting funny. His rear end got real wobbly. He was having trouble walking. I wasn't feeling too good either, but you know us terriers. We keep our game face on. It was a warm evening and we managed to stumble home where I collapsed. Literally. I couldn't lift my head. I drooled. I somehow managed not to pee. My eyes kept rolling back. Bocchi didn't look so good, either. His head kept nodding off, like he was listening to a boring lecture, as my Ma described.

Ma immediately called my doctor, Dr. Griffin, of Spruce Veterinary Clinic. He told her to take me to an emergency room in San Mateo, but that is so far away so instead, Ma took me to Pets Unlimited, which is down the street from where Lucca lives on Fillmore and Washington. Lucca's Ma called ahead for us so when we arrived, they were waiting. They determined that we were somehow poisoned but could not figure out what it was. It was some kind of neurotoxin - a CNS depressant. We both had a fever, elevated lactate levels, normal liver and kidney profiles, and symptoms of lethargy, salivation, ataxia and Bocchi suffered incontinence. We were given an emetic so we both vomited. I had nothing to vomit but bile since I hadn't eaten since 7 AM and it was  6:30 PM. Bocchi apparently does not digest his kibble well so he did have something to throw up. Nothing looked like the culprit - no food, no pills, no mushrooms. The grass had been recently mowed so there is still the possibility that it was something the Park Service sprayed or used to kill gophers or vermin. They gave us a slurry of activated charcoal - I swallowed it but Bocchi couldn't. They also set us up with an IV drip and told our humans that we had to spend the night in the ICU, however, I was getting better. My lactate levels went to normal and my fever came down. I was still a bit ataxic but I had stopped drooling, which was a relief. Bocchi seemed to be getting worse, or, was not getting better.

It was scaaaaaaaarrrry! Do you  know, that was the first time I had spent the night without one of my humans since I moved here in Sept of 2009? During the night, Bocchi's humans came by and they called my Ma and Pa to let them know I was OK. The next morning, Ma and Pa came to get me. Bocchi got to go home as well but he wasn't back to normal.

I am happy to report, I survived. My poop looked like charcoal briquettes the next day and Ma thought that was funny. Bocchi but he took longer but did get better. I had a bad headache on Friday and I still feel a bit spooked but I'm back to normal and Ma took me to the beach today. Lucca's Ma was so relieved to see me she gave me one of her bear hugs. I have to say, I was extra happy to see them today after such trauma and we had a grand time at the beach.

So, all of you out there, 'til my next misadventure, have fun, BE SAFE, and that means:
1. Don't eat food from strangers that don't ask your humans permission.
2. No mushrooms. I don't care if they are pretty looking with little red caps.
3. Don't roll in herbicide treated grass.
4. Don't eat vermin if you are quick enough to get one.

As for you humans, here's some advice from my Ma:
1. Know where the closest ER is for you buddy - if the emergency is in the evening, your vet may not be available.
2. Keep some hydrogen peroxide handy. Not only does it disinfect, it's useful for inducing vomiting if you know what your buddy ate that was a bad idea. It's also very effective for skunk sprayings.
3. If ingestion of poison is suspected, activated charcoal is useful. They can be purchased in tablet form on-line. It's pretty harmless stuff so the quicker your buddy is treated, the better.

We played stalk the prey

We found a plushy toy duck

We really don't need to bring toys to the beach, there are
usually some we can steal from other people or we
find great ones like this!

I found a head on the beach