writer, warrior, whack-a-doodle

This and That

This and That

January 27, 2011
Posted in: Dogs | Reading Time: 6 minutes


There is no story, just a few photos of this and that over the past month.

When our friends were here we visited the cathedral in Lausanne. It was nighttime, so I didn't have to risk being kicked out. Another embarassing moment averted. 

We also managed to go snow shoeing in the Swiss ALPS baby!  We didn't know what the heck we were doing so we just chose a place that looked snowy, Champrey. I wasn't exactly thrilled when information guide gave us a trail map that included cartoons of a snow shoer trying to run away from a wild boar. I pretended not to see that and set out on the trail.

We started on one of the easier routes but ended up doing a middle-level route that went a bit longer. I was expecting gentle rolling fireroad like trails, but those crazy Swiss had other ideas. The trail started with a 87% climb (ok it felt like that) and across two very teeny weeny ledges with a steep drop off on one side. WTF? The crazy Swiss and their addiction to thrill. I said my prayers and tiptoed my way across them.

Despite the freaky trails, Mr. Wild Dingo and I had a blast and immediately went out and bought ourselves snow shoes and poles along with better clothing.

But now there's no snow, especially where we live, by the lake.

I managed to get in a little off-leash time for the dogs. I was hoping that since we've been here 6 months now and hopefully by now they've learned the area, they wouldn't be so cracker once the leash was off. There's Loki in the distance of the rolling hills practically screaming "Je suis libre!"

Juno on the other hand remains composed. Until she sees something move.

"Hey Big Boy, how about tuning those antennas on your head to Serius radio for some tunes?"

We found a secluded area in back of some non-residential farms that is somewhat safe to roam around. If I don't see other dogs, people or animals, I let them go.

It rocked my world to see Loki run his zoomie circles in bliss around us.

He was so happy, he forgot that his feet were wet by the river when he went to go get a drink of water.


I've also been letting them off in the more popular dog walking paths. That's Chateau Vufflens way in the back. They keep up with me pretty well, occassionally they will try to go down one of the vinyard paths between the vines, but a simple "no" heads them in the right direction with me. It's nice for me to get a break from the constant stop and go with them or with one and not the other.

I'm not as gullible as you think. I don't let them off near a band of horses. As we passed these 6 or 7 horses, Loki had just averted two off leash dogs who were interested in us (and he not so much in them) and then had to face the horses who walked toward us rather quickly, as if I had carrots or something. Not one bark. And he was very nervous. Sigh. Sometimes he surprises me.

Last weekend, downtown Morges was freezing. Even the river was lined with ice.

Swan butts are funny.

I have no idea who that whacko is holding my dogs.



And Juno is steadily maintaining her masticatory hobbies.  (The Dansko's are still alive.)  This is the box of very swanky cookies given to us by a nice French lady. Thankfully all the cookies were consumed by Mr. Wild Dingo prior to Juno investigating the box.

Juno's Jodhpurs Pupdate
I'm a chick. I have perogatives. I'm still not sure about whether we should go ahead with doing the hip surgery on Juno. We have varying opinions from different vets.

The gold beads seem to keep her out of severe pain but she's definitely NOT walking normally or zooming like I know she would love to do. We've now been to an osteopath who manipulates her muscles and opens up her blocked areas that has helped more than anything. In the past, acupuncture needles were put in the exact areas where the osteopath is working on her: in her low-to-mid-spine area. There is a lot of tension and pain in that area, no doubt from not being able to move properly.

The osteopath seems to prefer no surgery at all and said it is possible not have an improvement after surgery and no matter what, your dog runs the risk of "never being the same." That could be positive or negative. It sure sounded negative to me though.  And she also warned that each hip takes up to 6-8 months for full recovery. So we were looking at up to 1.5 years of total recovery time. Which would be difficult for Juno as well as me.

Juno and I go back to her tomorrow for a second appointment. Today she was very restless and a little whiny which tells me she's probably in some pain probably from playing too much. She was supposed to rest and relax this past week, but that's just not Juno. She's obsessed with long walks. Though we were regulated to shorter walks, that just never happens with her as she'll often try her hardest not to turn back home.

I'll be bringing her x-rays to the osteopath tomorrow as she hasn't seen them yet and we'll hear more opinion on how to proceed. She may refer us to a surgeon for a consult. But there are so many opinions. Some very frightening. I do like all the doctors I've seen. They're all fantastic, including the primary care vet and the holistic doctors. But it's just so difficult to decide what's best. We have not recieved a surgical consult, mainly because we know what the opinion will be but I am certain a consult will happen soon.  For now, it's holistic/osteopathic care and the status quo.

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13 comments on “This and That”

  1. Hi Wild Woman! (oops, DINGO)

    So, as you know-- been there, done that with adorable Abby. I delayed and delayed because she seemed happy, not in too much pain (I had thought). She never lost her "full body wiggle" when she was excited over a fresh tomato or new human. 6 years of osteo/homeo/holistic treatments before I finally saved up the money for the hip replacement. Then, the decision-- which hip? As a poor, almost starving, decrepit author working for non profits, I had money for only 1 hip, and she needed both done.

    After the surgery? Recovery was a b*tch (12 weeks of confinement).

    Do you know my most memorable moment, however? The 3 days following surgery-- she smiled and kept trying to RUN. Her face carried no hint of wrinkles, no sign of pain. She was the happiest I had ever seen her since Danny had died. I was in shock. At that exact moment, it hit me-- she was in more pain than I ever knew, for all those years before the surgery.


    Anyhow, it's not an easy decision. Juno will let you know when it's right.

    Miss you!
    (and Sugar, of course)

  2. Lovely photos! Your friend Karen has a good point - some dogs are very good as masking pain. Our Star was like that - very stoic. I think she was in much more pain than we ever imagined the summer she declined.

    Sounds like you have some great vets over there - I have a friend who does equine massage and says much of that pain from hips problems can be relieved by working on the deep tissues and breaking up adhesions between muscles.

    good luck, its very wise of you to be checking out all the options before making a decision.

    Pat, on behalf of jack & moo

  3. Amazing pictures! I want to come visit!

    Such tough decisions about Juno. Crazy Lady makes some good points. And some dogs are able to hide their pain well. Juno's a young dog and has a lot of life left to live... If the gold beads aren't helping that much then maybe surgery is a good route. But that's just me! Good luck in trying to sort it all out!

  4. Julie, best of luck with sorting it all out. Not an easy decision to be sure.
    Juno and Loki look like they've acclimated pretty well to their new home. Love your blog and FB posts!
    April in Santa Cruz ( mom of Kaya and Luca)

  5. I think I kind of agree with the others. As young as Juno is and as bad as her hips are already means that she'll probably have to have the surgery eventually, so why not now while she's young and healthy. The recovery will probably be long and hard, but if it means she could be pain free for the next twelve or so years . . . isn't that worth it? Obviously though we don't know the details. We don't know worst case scenario or what could happen or any of that stuff, so it's ultimately your decision. Wish I could be of more help. I'll be thinking of Juno though.

  6. Swan butts ARE funny! Heehee. As for Juno. I know this isn't the same, but Gary's neurosurgeon won't do surgery on his back until he literally can't walk because "there's no guarantee that it will help, and could make things worse"... I understand what he's saying, but it's not exactly HELPFUL feedback, ya know? I don't envy you the decision process.

    Love the pictures (although I want to see more of these Swiss snowshoeing trails!)!

    -Dr. Liz (the girls are napping; apparently it's tough playing bitey-face 87 hours a day)

  7. wow--amazing Pictures!!! We wanted to thank you for the blog comments--it really meant a lot to us and it is so nice that you could share your experiences with us. That kind of support is exactly what we need to hear!!!

  8. Cool photos as usual! Am sooooo jealous of the big, wide open spaces that Juno & Loki can enjoy! (and I've been drooling over your food photos in the previous posts!)

    Poor Juno - it must be so frustrating for you! Hope you start to get more clear answers & plan of action soon...


  9. It's great Juno & Loki are getting more off leash time, especially if Juno has to be seriously curtailed during recovery if you decide to go with the hip replacements. Very tough decision. Guess I'd want the surgical consult just to find out EXACTLY what the surgery would entail, how it would be done, what the life expectancy of the replacement material is, exactly what they mean by "curtailed" activity [crate rest except for potty breaks? house arrest? how long?]. Also, if surgery is postponed, is there a downside in terms of permanent injury to the spine as Juno compensates for the hips? Of course, you've thought of all that and about 500 other things.

    Jed & Abby

  10. Wooo we all love snow shoeing, you must find some routes for Loki and Juno to come along, its just such fun.

    A hard decision for you with poor Juno. We cant even find a vet to do vaccinations here! Good luck 🙂

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