Foster Return & Cali Update

Sadly, I had to return the foster bird on Monday. When I was home alone, he was lovely. He was sweet and fun. We danced together, he loved his toys and his treats. He called to me in his sweet little voice when I was out of sight, “hey, hi, hey baby.”

Sadly, Monster bird showed up whenever anyone else dared to come in the house. The screaming was horrific whenever my husband or niece were around. He even flew at my niece and landed on her, scary! Having my husband feed him treats didn’t seem to help at all. He would take the treats, some times he would try to bite the hand that fed him, and he still screamed.

I miss the morning dance parties, and that sweet little voice, but the screaming was making our house a very stressful place to be!

 

Hector D. Byrd was not the least bit interested in her foster friend. They barely looked at each other in the weeks K was here.  Hector is very happy to once again rule the roost!

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Cali is doing OK. I tried to wean her off the pain meds, but it was clear that she still needs them. Another laser treatment today, hopefully it continues to help.

It has been a real challenge to find a kidney-friendly food that Cali will eat. I’ve probably gone through half a dozen of them. She eats for a couple of days, I order more of the expensive prescription food, and then she stops eating it.

Thankfully, she has been eating Dr. Harvey’s food pretty well for a couple of weeks now. I’m working with them to customize some kidney friendly food for her. They make an easy to use dry mix that just requires fresh protein, water and oil. Dr. Harvey’s even offers an amazing, free service to help customize their diets.  They have a nutritionist on staff who called me to help me work out the healthiest diet for Cali. She even had me send in a copy of Cali’s blood test results so she could see everything that was going on with her.

Cali is eating the Canine Health formula and  they are sending me a trial of their Paradigm food as well.  The plan is to very slowly add some of the Paradigm to the Canine Health formula to see if we can get my picky eater to accept it. The food is super easy to use. Cali’s recipe is 2.5 oz of protein per day. I froze a bunch of different types of protein, chicken, ground turkey, ground pork, in 2.5 oz portions so I can just grab a protein from the freezer, steam it while the dry mix sits with warm water in it, add the protein and feed half to Cali for each of her meals.

Dr. Harvey’s also makes a Kidney supplement that I’m adding to Cali’s meals on the recommendation of their dietician.

From Cali’s blood work the dietician also noticed her blood sugar was a bit high, so she suggested I stop feeding Cali carrots as treats, and adding the vegetable-heavy Paradigm food to the Canine Health formula should help as well. I thought with her kidney issues I was doing a good thing with carrots, but they are too starchy.  I even got advice on the best ways to give Cali her pills since commercial pill pockets I had been using also have a bunch of protein. Now I’m trying little bread balls to hide her pills, and baby food green beans and broccoli that don’t have protein or high starch. With a little luck all this healthy food will help, and it may even help the allergies Cali has always had!

Cali Update

I think I posted about Cali hurting her leg about a month ago? If not, Cali basically did the dog-equivalent of tearing her ACL. She is not a candidate for surgery because of her age, kidney issues, and heart murmur. We’ve been managing her with pain medicines, but she is still limping and not getting around very well. The vet switched her to another pain med last week and that is helping a bit. On Monday, she is going to start laser treatments. Hopefully that will help accelerate the healing process. I’ve done laser treatments myself for stubborn muscle issues and found them helpful, so hopefully they hope Cali!

We had beautiful, sunny weather today, so I couldn’t resist taking Cali for a walk. She seemed to want to go, so we took it slow and didn’t go far. We walked roughly a block, and she still seemed to want to go, so we walked just a little more and then she stopped and looked at me, so we turned around. She seemed to enjoy the slow pace and getting out to sniff! I had some yard chores to do, and she happily stayed outside with me for a while to smell everything in the yard, and to rest in the sunshine.

 

I’m also trying yet another new food for Cali,  Dr. Harvey’s food. Basically it is a dry mix that I will add protein, water, and oil to and mix up fresh to create a new meal for Cali. There is a special low-protein recipe to help her kidney issues, and I’ve also ordered a kidney supplement from them that I’ll try with her. I emailed them to ask what proteins they recommend for kidney dogs, and they told me they will help me customize a diet for her, so I’m waiting for a call from them. Cali hates all the low protein prescription foods I’ve been trying for her, and they are all expensive. Really hoping that this mix might be the answer for her. I’ve mixed up a batch from the sample bag I just got for her to try for dinner. Fingers crossed that she likes it!

Mixing it up was super easy, I just mixed one day’s worth to try it, but I could mix up to 3 days at a time and store it in the fridge. You mix the dry product from the bag with hot water and let it sit for about ten minutes. It’s kinda like making hot oatmeal, and I think there are even oats in this mix! Next I stirred that, and today I added hard boiled eggs as protein since I had them. I think lean chicken and turkey are going to be better alternatives with Cali’s kidney issues, but this was an easy way to try it. I mixed in the eggs, and added a teaspoon of oil, easy. Now it’s in the fridge and ready for Cali’s dinner!

As a quick Kanga/foster bird update, I got her a new toy. She LOVES to destroy wood! Here’s the toy before and after about 10 minutes.

Kanga wastes no time destructing wood! I just ordered a new six pack of perches since he eats through them pretty quickly. The current one is short, but wide and it has been lasting a bit longer. Overall, K is doing great. He doesn’t always want head scratches, so I’m trying to give him treats and reward him when he hangs out near me and doesn’t run into his cage to hide when I approach. Moving slowly to not overwhelm him, but making some progress.  We’ve also been having dance parties every morning. I’ve tried some different songs, but I have to say that Levitating is still his favorite!