Adjusting to life on 3 legs!

Very very quick post after yesterday’s long one!

Toller is home and doing GREAT!! She was so happy to see us, she’s very tired but has actually been playing with toys when we hold and cuddle her, and she had her first toilet trip an hour ago and omb she’s AWESOME on those three legs!! Video as proof πŸ˜‰

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Throwback to sunny days

What do you get when you mix insomnia, hypomania, seizures and a cold?

Me -_-

My partner gave me a cold he had…WHO GETS A COLD IN SPRING?! Haha, ugh!

The weather has turned from 5 days of glorious sunshine, to now we’re on day 4 of constant rain. If I post these beautiful photos from when it was sunny, I’m thinking it will tempt the sun to return. Well, that and I feel too yucky to post anything else πŸ˜„

Although Charley never looked ‘fat’, he was overweight when he arrived here, and he’s lost a fair bit of chub in the few months we’ve had him. He’s a lean mean ball-fetching machine now! Who said you need walks to keep a dog fit?!

When he first arrived:

Birds’ eye view now:

And the best I could find from before:

His height seems to have shrunk this past month too…wait, what do you mean Sasha’s grown? WHY IS SHE STILL GROWING?! Will she never stop?? πŸ˜„

Possibly my favourite-est photo of all time πŸ™‚ ❀

HAHA THE DERP FACE IS BACK!!

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Games in the sun. The last pic, yes, Sasha is biting his arse. This is something she does when Charley is playing fetch πŸ˜„

I bloody love his smile. And his eyes. And his lovely orangey head πŸ˜„

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Sasha: MUST. KISS. DADDY!!!

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Smiley sun-Sasha is literally the cutest thing ever

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This is my most favourite Sasha photo!!

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Omg, these two πŸ™‚

 

Top Collar Dog Treat subscription box review

Top collar reached out to me recently on Instagram (@crazyinky) and offered me a free box.

They had a deal going where you can have a free box if you pay for Β£1 postage, and after that you are automatically signed up for heir monthly (or twice monthly) boxes until you cancel.

The boxes contain one packet of treats (130g).

The boxes are Β£5.99 per box per month. I can’t find out how much two boxes per month costs, it might just be another Β£5.99. Top Collar, if I’m wrong get in touch and I will edit this πŸ˜„

These treats are made with decent ingredients; gluten free, and meat is the second ingredient.

This month’s ingredients are as follows:

Gluten free flour, beef liver, potato, free range eggs, milk, butter

Not the best, but not abysmal like most shop-bought treats.

Another quirk of the company, if you send in a photo of your dog/s, they will add it to the front of the package! Cute πŸ™‚

The package itself is *very* cute, and there’s even a touch of adorableness on the back:

Huge flaw #1 though…

This is not a treat BOX!

It’s a packet with a smaller packet of treats inside haha! Now I’ve only ever done one pet subscription box before, which was a rabbit box from Barks & Bunnies, and Graze boxes for humans…and both those were actual boxes.

There were a selection of items inside…not just a single packet of treats πŸ˜„

Again, cute packging though πŸ™‚

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Next to Charley-boy

The treats are quite large at 1.5 inches, and are dry, crunchy biscuits.

For foodie dogs, this is fine. All four of my pups would be happy to eat these. But offer these to Kasper / Charley on a walk, or even use them to work with Sasha around distractions, and they’d be snubbed in seconds. They’re not particularly high value, and are too big to be used handily as training treats.

Sasha and Charley trying them:

Kasper trying them:

Review time!

The good…

  • We got them for free πŸ˜„
  • The ingredients are better than your standard shop-bought treats…looking at you Pedigree!!
  • You can choose to add supplements to your treats (eg. for the dog’s skin)
  • The packaging is cute
  • Dogs will eat them

The bad?

  • This is stupidly expensive. Coming from someone who used to own a business that baked and sold dog treats, these are expensive for what they are, and as a whole this is a pricey pet subscription box service.
  • They’re big treats, and don’t snap too easily
  • They aren’t that appealing. Most dogs will eat them, because most dogs will eat most food haha…but they’re not moist, or pongy, or overly meaty so unless your dog is a weirdo they won’t work well for high value treats.

I feel like I’m slamming the company, and I’m not. Their treats were fine. My dogs ate them.

But I was expecting more. 130g of treats for a ‘box’ doesn’t sit well with me, not when there are companies out there Β that put a LOT of effort into their boxes…love you Barks & Bunnies, wish we had more money πŸ˜„

I think for a treat ‘box’, I’d expect three different types – these hearts would be a great ‘bigger’ less appealing treat, then smaller ones that are ideal for training, and maybe a bigger chew treat.

These ‘boxes’ are Β£5.99, and you get this:

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At the time, the rabbit box was Β£9.99 and you got this

Quantity makes a difference. Varied products will always get me more excited than one mediocre product.

In conclusion…

If you have money to spare and think this looks good, try it. These are okay treats.

If you want to give them to your dog who loves food, purely as a one-off treat, they’re probably great – s/he will most likely really enjoy them!

But if you were getting this boxΒ to experience a variety of treats, don’t do it! Or if you’re getting this box because your dog is picky, and you’re hoping for hugely enticing treats, I’d give it a miss.

These are good, standard treats…but unfortunately that’s it!

In conclusion we rate them –

1.5 paws out of 4!

Toller update – GOOD NEWS!!!

Hello all.

We just had an amazing appt with a new vet at the surgery who was just exceptional.

Not only did she not charge us to re-splint Toller, but she gave us a heap of information the other vet did not, and she gave us a cone for free too πŸ™‚

Toller was just wonderful at the vets and was wagging at everybody and really really good. This dog constantly amazes me, she’s just incredible.

Firsly…

We’re not looking at amputation!!

OR the wire surgery πŸ˜€

My partner talked to the vet about the surgery that the other vets (one in particular) was pushing, and this vet actively told us that the surgery was not needed. She said that there are huge risks and complications with that surgery, and that there’s really no need, as because Tolly is young there’s a good chance of her bones healing using splints and crate rest.

She said that, once fully healed, should the leg cause issues we can think about it then, and amputation would be an option.

Toller has another splint on and a cone, and this vet warned us that splints do just fall off and if they can’t get a splint to stay she will be left to heal naturally, obviously on strict crate rest.

We’re looking at 6-8 weeks crate rest, with regular appts to check up and x-rays down the road. Once fully healed we re-asses but, if it goes the best it can, no further action will be needed πŸ˜€

I will keep you updated. Tolly is absolutely POOPED after the excitement of the day ❀

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Please share Spud’s Go Fund Me!

If you can splatter this link anywhere and everywhere that would be really helpful:

https://www.gofundme.com/rescue-puppy-needs-leg-amputated

In a couple hours we have a vet appt to have Toller re-splinted, but we will not be discussing amputation then as we don’t know which vet it will be. The whole treatment from the vet has been just awful; we found out on the receipt they charged a Β£38 consultation fee for when we went to collect Tolly –Β the vet gave us no aftercare advice, didn’t tell us what to do next, and simply said “the other vet explained everything to you, didn’t she?”

We were totally unaware that counted as a consultation, and the fact they charged us Β£38 for it is beyond disgusting.Β 

My partner is going to discuss this with them later, and we will be asking to talk to our vet via phone to bring up the possibility of amputation.

We are also going to be calling other vets in our area, along with rescues in case they can help set up an emergency fund that more people will see, and we’re going to try find a teaching hospital as sometimes they apparently charge less for operations.

I’ve done a lot of research on amputation and have found an amazing resource of a ‘tripod’ (3 legged) pet forum.

There are several owners whose dogs suffered a similar injury and, like Tolly, their vets tried to repair the limb.

One person’s dog was fine for two years but then developed severe end-stage arthritis. This meant they needed an elbow replacement (she brought up amputation then and the vet refused), the elbow replacement led to a chronic infection, and then finally the leg was amputated. The dog is pain free now.

And another person’s dog had a similar break to Tolly which was allowed to heal, and again the dog needed amputation a few years later and had been living with pain for suspected all that time.

I’ve written out loads of info and questions for the vet (they are so gonna hate us…) asking all sorts. One thing we *need* to know is a) what is the prognosis with the surgery where they wire her bones, and b)Β what are the chances of repeat procedures.

The vets haven’t mentioned that to us AT ALL, we had no idea that there was even a possibility of a repeat procedure. Every person I have spoken to who has experience with this (including a vet nurse) has warned me that complications and repeat procedures run extremely high with an injury like this.Β The vets told us nothing.

I find this absolutely shameful.

The only thing they have said about this procedure, and that was done over the phone, was that “hopefully” it will help Tolly heal better than a splint would. Hopefully. And that she would still be lame afterwards, but ‘probably’ not as much as if we just used splints.

That is not good enough. For a surgery that would cost Β£1200-1600 and that is extremely invasive with a long recovery time, that is not good enough.

There are many reasons why amputation would be a better choice, but vets seem to be against this because it seems so drastic. My reasons are:

  • Amputation completely gets rid of the need for further repairing surgeries for the leg
  • Unlike either of the other two options, Tolly would be able to walk (without pain) and would be able to go on walks, interact with calm and similarly sized dogs, etc. She would get to be a dog much more than having a fourth lame, painful leg.
  • Although amputation is a huge procedure obviously, recovery tends to be faster and easier and the dog tends to bounce back and adjust very well

Please please continue to share Tolly’s fund and I will keep you as updated as possible.

Devastating

Toller has smashed all the connecting bones in the front of her foot.

There are two options: she has surgery to fit wires which might help the foot recover. This could leave her with less of a chance of arthritis and able to go on short strolls with being carried (walking on lead for a minute, carry, another brief pootle, carry etc).

The other option is use a special type of splint to help it repair itself. Again the vet can’t say the prognosis, but thinks this would leave her with more lameness and more possibility of arthritis.

Toller will not be able to go on walks anymore, ever. She must not interact with any dogs bigger than her FOR THE REST OF HER LIFE, and obviously can’t interact with tiny dogs for the foreseeable months. She will be disabled for life.

I am beyond devastated, I can’t put into words how sad I am and I’m so fucking upset that the vet said it was a minor thing and wasn’t even going to do the x-ray and then she did and first it was two bones broken, then four and now it’s her whole foot I feel so sorry for Toller I’m just devastated.

We have to decide op or no op and I don’t know what to do.

The operation would cost Β£1400 but if they told me it would help I’d find a way but they’re not saying that, they’re just saying they can’t predict for either and I dont know what to do. If they’re not giving a definite for either what are we supposed to do??

We finally get to pick her up in 30 minutes, wearing her special splint. I ujust want to have her in my arms πŸ˜₯

We are most definitely rehoming Sasha or Charley.. Toller’s recovery and disability will totally change our lives and we can’t handle keeping three big dogs separate from her permanantly.

Sasha will be getting a lot less attention, her training PA stuff will obviously have to stop completely, and she is the dog that will cope least with being separated. I also think she has a better chance of fitting in with another family as she has so few issues and is such a calm dog. But I also can’t bear the thought of losing her.

She’s also easily managed alongside recovering Toller, whereas Charley wouldn’t be at all. He will be leaping all over us whereas Sasha will understand to be gentle. And Sasha is just easier to manage in general and, as a pet especially, has less issues so is easier to manage alongside.

IDK what to do…

Please no hatred for this. I am just…it’s a lot to take in and I’m just trying to do the best for my dogs.

I’m so fucking upset.

*edit*

She is home guys. I’m so relieved.

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Lead Mate review

We’ve had our Lead Mates for quite some time now, as we bought it via the kickstarter, so it’s about time I did a review!

What is it?

Lead Mate is a small plastic ball that unscrews into two halves. Quite simply you fasten a lead through the centre of it, and it acts as an extra handy handle to have on your dog’s lead!

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Why would I want that?!

You’re probably wondering whyΒ that’s any use at all…but seriously guys, THEY ARE AMAZING!!

I love to walk my dogs on long leads, so if I need to have them close for any period of time (glass or litter on the ground, walking by a busy road, aggressive dogs going past etc), having an ’emergency’ grabbing point is incredibly useful.

It’s also fantastic for dogs that pull as a back-up hand hold. Fastened tightly these Lead Mates hold firm, I’ve NEVER had one pop open or slip and I use mine all. the. time!

Another awesome thing to mention is that, because you can obviously adjust which length the Lead Mate sits at, it’s sooo versatile. You could walk your dog on a 10ft lead, clip three Lead Mates on, and you’re good to go for any circumstance – three leads in one, with the handles easily adjustable!

How strong is it?

I’ve used a Lead Mate with Charley, who is an incredibly strong puller. He may only be about 25kg, but when he puts his full force into pulling, he feels like he’s twice that size!

The Lead Mate has not slipped when used with him at all. I get my partner to put them on, as he can tighten them more than me, and they’ve never moved at all once fastened onto a lead.

I had great fun yanking on it for this photo πŸ˜‰

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And yep, I made my partner pull on it too!

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How do I know it will fit my lead?

Lead Mate comes in two designs; one fits rope leads, the other material ones.

Rope style:

They also come in a few colour variations, which is cool!

Price?

About Β£11.20 or $13.95. I do not know how much shipping is.

Okay, I’m interested. But what are the negatives?

Really, there aren’t many.

My one issue is that I wish the Lead Mate had more grip to it. The grooves do help you keep hold, but for me they just need to be a little deeper or different somehow. I understand it needs to be comfortable to hold even if your dog is a crazy puller (which it is), but it’s still just a little too smooth for my liking!

To recap…

This a truly awesome product.

  • It’s extremely versatile, I’m always swapping the length I have mine at and switching to different leads
  • It’s durable – mine have bashed into walls, I’ve dropped them on concrete etc and they haven’t got a scratch on them!
  • It’s a revolutionary product; such a simple idea but it’s completely changed my life as a dog owner and I’ll always make sure we have a few of these lying around!
  • Support a small business with a really nice owner πŸ™‚

To buy your Lead Mate, head on over toΒ lead-mate.com

In conclusion we definitely rate this product *drum roll please*…

4 out of 4 paws!