Thursday, November 11, 2010

Honoring Our K-9 Soldiers This Veterans Day

As all dog-lovers know, our pups will do anything for those of us they love - including lay down their lives.
Generally when we think of a dog losing its life for his human, we think he either tried to rescue someone from a fire or kept her warm while lost outside overnight.

But did you know that dogs have been serving alongside our military troops since WWII? 

On this Veteran's Day, let's honor our K-9 Soldiers.

K-9 Promise

My eyes are your eyes
to watch and protect you and yours

My ears are your ears to hear and detect evil minds in the dark

My nose is your nose to scent the invader of your domain

And so you may live 
My life is also yours
author unknown

To learn more about the history of dogs in war, visit The United States War Dogs Association

Monday, November 8, 2010

Putting Dog To Sleep In The Most Peaceful Way

There's nothing more heartbreaking for us dog lovers than when putting dog to sleep. After all, we've been through all the same stages with our beloved Fido that we have with our kids.

We bring them home as pups.  When they cry through the night we get up to comfort them.  We potty train them. We go from feeding them several small, mushy meals to three hearty meals a day.  We work hard to balance showering them with love and discipline.

As the signs of aging begin we wonder how much longer we'll have our wonderful Golden with us.  And day.....somehow..... we know it's time.

The idea of putting dog to sleep on a cold tile floor at the vet's clinic makes my heart ache. Is that really the way I want to say "good bye"?  

If you feel the same way about putting dog to sleep, I have great news for you.  There is a trend brewing among compassionate vets. They call themselves "mobile vets."  That's today's trendy vernacular. In the old days we would have said, "They make house calls." 

Imagine when the time comes for putting dog to sleep and you can elect to do so right in her favorite spot, on her bed in front of the fireplace. This is the most peaceful way I can imagine of saying good bye to my companion of so many wonderful years.

There aren't a lot of mobile vets yet.  But more and more are coming into American towns. We are fortunate in my home town of Minneapolis/St. Paul to have such a vet.  Dr. Rebecca McComas calls her business Minnesota Pets and she specializes in in-home euthanasia.  As a dog owner herself  she knows the pain you're feeling. Perhaps this is what led Dr. McComas to specialize in this emotionally stressful (for her)  yet peaceful (for clients) specialty within veterinary practice.

In Massachusetts there's a network of vets who provide in home pet care, beyond - but including -euthanasia.  In addition to the benefit of coming to your home, A House Call Vet is open seven days a week. Can you imagine how wonderful that is for the dog lovers in Massachusetts to be able to get a vet to come to your home seven days a week? To me, that is tremendous peace of mind. 

Vet Dispatch is available for families living in Central and North New Jersey.  Like A House Call Vet in Massachusetts, Vet Dispatch provides many in home services beyond euthanasia.

And there's the Home Pet Doctor in West Hollywood.

If the idea of putting dog to sleep in your home rather than taking her to the vet is of interest to you but you don't know of a mobile vet in your area, a place to start your search is to do a web search for:  mobile vet + your hometown.   There is a website called the American Association of Housecall and Mobile Veterinarians.   However, they don't seem to take very good care of updating their information.  Many of the web site links I visited were not functional or took me to spam pages that are for sale.