That title sounds like the kind of horrible thing you’d see on First Do No Harm, doesn’t it? In fact, it’s actually good news for our foster puppy. What the shelter thought were mammary tumors are, in fact, fat deposits. The vet aspirated them to make sure, and nope, no tumors. I had the biggest grin walking out of that office, and when we got in the car, I almost cried with relief.
I already love this little dog, because she’s awesome, and it’s going to be much harder on me when she gets adopted out than the last one was. Not that I didn’t/don’t love Reba, but we weren’t the right home for her. She and Diamond have very different play styles, and she’s too rambunctious and needy to spend her days crated, but too wild to have free roam of the house. (I think if either of us were serious runners and got her a good long run morning and evening, she’d have done better with the crating. But while I’m happy to walk a mile or three in nice weather, if you see me running, I have a goal. Maybe I’m charging a shield wall or chasing an escaping dog. Maybe I’m being chased by a mountain lion. But I do not run just for the sake of running.)
I was also happy that the vet was pretty reasonable about her diet. There was no “Oh my gosh, you must get this dog down to a healthy weight tomorrow or her heart will explode and her knees will deteriorate.” Just a loss of maybe 4 pounds over the next year. She’s thoroughly enjoying all the walking we’re doing (and as a side benefit, I think it’s helping my ankle issues), and now that she’s over her kennel cough, she eats fine. We started adding unsalted chicken or beef stock to both dogs’ kibble, which makes them happy. She no longer needs it to be able to get her food down, but something that makes their food a bit tastier and adds another source of protein, definitely good. I do want to work on getting them a little more variety, because Diamond gets the runs if we switch her food on her. Basically, that means a rotation of treats, and also trying to incorporate more puppy-healthy table scraps into their meals. Not just meat bits, which they always get unless we’re eating a meat that they can’t have, but scraping a few leftover veggies (if they’re okay for dogs to eat), rice, a french fry or two, etc. into their dishes too.
Ellyn Satter’s food pyramid is actually a good way of figuring out food for dogs as well. Quantity and quality first and foremost (with the caveat that dogs don’t necessarily self-regulate so there’s the “not too much” side of “enough”), then variety, then other nutritional concerns.