Oct
11

As a parent I take a pretty laid back, no nonsense approach to raising my kids.  After all I was brought up in an era where mumps and measles were a right of passage, allergies simply did not exist, you were sent outside to play from dawn to dusk with nothing more than a skipping rope and a tennis ball for entertainment, “why?” was responded to with, “because I said so” and the sooner you learned that life wasn’t fair the better.

Why is it then, that I find myself dealing with the world’s most high maintenance dog?  And it’s not just the time and effort, but the cost too.  We adopted our scruffy looking mutt from the shelter and Mo delighted in telling us how advantageous this was, since ‘mixed breeds’ were so much healthier.  Pah!

It all started with the food allergies. First get a dog, then pick up a 100lb bag of generic brand food for next to nothing, right?  Wrong!  Seems Muttster is allergic to pretty much every grain, protein, diary and everything in between, except for venison and sweet potato.  Seriously, when was the last time you ate venison on a regular basis?  And what do most kids do when eating?  Drop crumbs!  And what do dogs do with those crumbs?  Hoover them up!  So lets add in the cost of poop bags, lots and lots of poop bags.

Next, following on from a couple of raging ear infections we found out that Muttster has seasonal allergies.  Now remind me, where do dogs originate?  Ah yes from wolves, living out in the wild.  So what serious flaw in the evolutionary process turns them into something that requires a daily dose of antihistamine?

And so onto the last of my precious pooch’s issues.  He’s always been a little on the high energy, crazy side, which is why he goes to doggy day care a couple of times a week (seriously who comes up with this shit?), to work out all that doggy energy.  But lately this craziness has developed into something where, well to put it bluntly he’s mental!  Highly-strung and nervous, he has started to have deranged, flip out episodes involving crazy eyes, excessive barking and much showing of scary teeth, mainly aimed at unfortunate strangers who enter our home.  With his family, he is the sweetest, softest dog you can imagine.  You should see the torment that Flo puts him through and he has never once flinched, but the time had come to seek professional advice in the form of a dog trainer.  After working with her for just a couple of weeks, she finally decided that whilst behavior adjustment would help, maybe Muttster needed a little something extra.   So, to the final installment in what feels like a punked version of pet ownership, Muttster is now taking what can only be described as doggy Prozac.  Let’s just hope 2 years down the line I’m not putting him in rehab for his drug addiction problem.

Footnote: I have chosen to hide the true identity of our dog by giving him a false name.  This is just in case his doggy friends find out about his issues and treat him differently at day care!

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