A small, family farm in Wisconsin

Posts tagged ‘dog’

Frankie’s Nose

Smooshy faced dogs and cats often have a condition called stenotic nares. Their nostrils are too small to allow them to breathe efficiently. We’ve had 2 Boston Terriers, and both have had this problem. In both cases our vet surgically reconstructed the nostrils to improve airflow in their poor little noses. We had it done at the same time the dogs were neutered, so that they only had to be anesthetized once. There is an associated condition called elongated soft palate which is also found in these dogs and can be surgically corrected if necessary.
Here’s an article that explains the procedure. http://www.vetsurgerycentral.com/resp_brachycephalic_airway_syndrome.html
Frankie just had his surgery last week and once the swelling is down completely he will be a new puppy. Here are his before and after picturesYou can see he still has some swelling. It’s only been 4 days. I don’t know if it will stay pink, and the nostrils are not quite symmetrical but he’s not a show dog so that’s not important to me. I’m just happy he can breathe deeply.

frankienose beforefrankienose after

A New Addition

After our Boston Terrier Charlie died in July, Lee and I missed him so much. The house wasn’t the same without that little clown around. We agreed that we needed to find another pup to fill our home and hearts. It didn’t take long to find a few Bosties fairly close to us. We chose Frankie.
Frankie is a fawn colored Boston Terrier. He’s beautiful. He has dark lining around his eyes, and he looks like he’s smiling. His ears are magnificent, and he may or may not grow into them.
We’re still learning about his personality, and I think it’s evolving. He’s a snuggler, a little shy and nervous in new situations. He’s stubborn and sassy and challenging. House breaking is mostly done. He has had the occasional accident, but they’re getting rare.
I had forgotten how time consuming puppies can be!
Our memories of Charlie will always be with us. We talk about him so often. Frankie isn’t a replacement. He’s an addition to our family.frankie 8-21-14 Frankie 9-27-2 Frankie2 8-24-14

Another Post About Charlie

A few weeks ago we took Charlie to the vet because he was having pain in his back. He probably injured it while jumping from furniture. The vet gave him steroids and by the time he was done with the prednisone he was feeling good as new. I think I must have had a premonition, because I had asked the vet to draw blood, just because he’s getting a little older, to keep tabs on him really. The blood results were a bit wonky…high white cells, low red cells. He was put on an iron supplement and antibiotics. Two weeks later there was virtually no change in his lab results. The vet suggested an ultrasound. We had to take him to a clinic that does ultrasounds and the vet there found a large, grapefruit sized tumor on his spleen. Long story shortened….he had surgery, spleen removed, tumor tested and it is cancer. Charlie is 11 years old and we had expected to have several more years with him. He truly is our furry little child and this diagnosis is heart breaking. The vet feels he could have 6 months left. Now that we know our time with Charlie is limited we’ll be enjoying every moment with this funny little guy.

There are a few posts about Charlie on this blog.  You can search his name and come up with them if you want to read more about him. I’ve linked to 3 of them.



Not Made in China








I think that all pet owners are pretty fed up with the China Connection as it relates to dog food and treats.  When I’m looking for treats for Charlie I spend a ridiculous amount of time reading the labels.  I’ve found a couple that I feel are safe to give him, but  I could probably make treats for him in the same amount of time I spend  reading labels and researching recall lists.
Here are some treat recipes you might like to try.  I’m also giving you horse treat recipes, just because I love my minis and they do get  treats sometimes as well.  They love bran muffins!

3/4 cup hot water or meat broth/stock
1/3 cup margarine
1/2 cup powdered milk
1 egg, beaten
3 cups whole wheat flour
Pour the hot water/broth over the margarine and mix to melt it.  Stir in the powdered milk and egg.  Add flour, 1/2 cup at a time, mixing well after each addition.  Knead 3 to 4 minutes, adding more flour as needed, to make a very stiff dough.  Roll to 1/2 inch thickness and cut out with cookie cutters or cut into rectangles sized for your dog.  Place on greased baking sheet and bake at 325 for 50 minutes/  Cool and let dry until hard.  Yields about 1/4 pound of treats.
2 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
2 eggs
1/2 cup canned pumpkin
2 tablespoons peanut butter
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1.     Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
2.     Whisk together the flour, eggs, pumpkin, peanut butter, salt, and cinnamon in a bowl. Add water as needed to help make the dough workable, but the dough should be dry and stiff. Roll the dough into a 1/2-inch-thick roll. Cut into 1/2-inch pieces.
3.     Bake in preheated oven until hard, about 40 minutes.
Makes about 25 treats.
Wafer ice cream cones
Mix together:
1 shredded apple
1 shredded carrot
1/4 cup horse feed (pellets or whatever you feed)
1 1/2 cups bran
Enough molasses to hold it all together.
Stuff the mixture into the cones.
Or, you can stuff it into cored apples.  These treats are sized for full size horses.  For minis, they only need about 1/4 of a treat.  They’ll tell you they want more, but don’t listen.
You can also modify the dog biscuit recipes for horses.  Experiment!

Happy Birthday Charlie

Charlie has a birthday this month, his 9th.  I haven’t written about him lately, so here’s a little update and some recent pictures.
Charlie continues to be incredibly quirky and a little bit crazy.  He’s a Boston Terrier, and that’s how they roll.
One of his quirks is his obsession with making a nest of my clothing and other items he finds.  He only does it when I’m not in the house and it can be pretty funny to see his pile and the treasures he’s amassed.  One of his favorite items is an orange fleece jacket and it’s a recurring theme in his nest.  He especially loves soft and fluffy fabrics. He finds things hanging on hooks, and his technique for snagging them is a jump and grab sort of motion.  He takes things out of the hamper.  He takes shoes and slippers.  He never chews on anything.  He just wants to possess them.  Usually his lime green snaky is a part of the pile.  I’m really impressed with Charlie’s ability to hold a piece of clothing in his mouth and jump with it onto our very high bed.  He sometimes makes his nest on the sofa and will drag things from the bedroom into the living room.
Here are some pictures of Charlie’s nesting.  There’s also a picture of him praying for food to fall from the table and into his mouth.  Some people would call this begging but I prefer to call it praying.

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Charlie’s New Toy

He’s watching me. Afraid I’ll touch his snake!

Charlie is one of those STRONG CHEWERS, even an AGGRESSIVE CHEWER.  Buying toys for him was an exercise in futility until we learned that he can destroy most any toy within minutes.  Over the years we’ve found a few toys that take much longer to shred.  He loves anything that  squeaks, but his goal is to get at the squeaker and he soon renders the squeakers silent.  I found the stuffing free toys to be longer lasting, and he even still likes them after he’s killed the squeak.  They’re good for shaking.  He also gets a lot of playtime out of Wubbas. 

Recently I ordered a stuffing free snake from dog.com.  Reading the reviews of the toy, I felt it would be a long-lasting diversion for him.  It’s about 2 feet long, and has sections.  The tail has a rattle, and the body is 3 sections, each with its own squeaker.  The catalog (and reviews) said that the squeakers won’t stop working, even if punctured.  What?  Yay!  A few days later the perfect toy arrived.  Listen to this…Charlie hasn’t let that
Charlie’s favorite things:the snake and the heat vent.

thing out of his sight since I gave it to him.  He adores that snake.  Carries it everywhere with him.  When he goes outside, he carries it right to the door, and only drops it just before he steps out.  He picks it up again the second he’s back inside.  He takes it to bed with him and snuggles his nose into it.  When he’s feeling sociable, he gently bites on it and it talks to him in snake squeaks.  The only time Charlie leaves his snake is while he’s eating.  This has been going on for days, and the bloom is still not off the rose. 

I don’t know why Charlie has fallen in love with this snake.  He’s never taken such a liking to a particular toy before.
 I recommend this toy for dogs who destroy their toys!

Mostly Home -Made Carrot Cake

Here in the frozen tundra, we bake.  It gives us something to do during the long cold winter, and the oven adds heat to the house.  Unfortunately, baking also adds unneccessary  fuel in the form of calories to our persons.  I made a carrot cake today, that helped to heat up the house, while keeping calories lower.  I had all of these ingredients on hand.  I made a 9×13 cake, but this would make 24 cupcakes if you prefer.  The resulting cake is very moist, a little crumbly, not overly sweet.  Lee likes it a lot.





1 package spice cake mix (about 18 oz)

1 can low fat condensed tomato soup

1/2 cup water

2 eggs

1 cup shredded carrots

1/2 cup raisins


1 cup powdered sugar

3 tablespoons apple juice

Preheat oven to 350.  Spray 9×13 pan or prepare cupcake pans

Mix the cake mix, soup, water, eggs, carrots and raisins.  Pour batter into prepared cake pan or spoon into cupcake pans.

Bake cake for about 30 minutes, checking for doneness.  Cupcakes will bake about 20 minutes.

Mix powdered sugar and juice together.  Frost the cake or cupcakes while still warm.

Makes 24 servings.  124 calories, 2g fat, 24 g carbohydrates, 18mg sodium.

Notes:  If you don’t have a spice cake mix, substitute yellow and add your own spices.  Grated zucchini would work here too.  Sub craisins or even dried cherries for the raisins.  Add nuts if you wish.


Why is Charlie “smiling”?  Because I gave him a chunk of raw carrot and he did his own version of grated carrots all over the living room carpet.


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