BRINKLEY - 7 YEAR OLD FEMALE
ADOPTION STATUS: IN FOSTER CARE. NOT CURRENTLY AVAILABLE FOR ADOPTION.
July 10: Summer Lovin!
June 10: Cone head!
July 10 - Running Up the Stairs
May 7: Listen to her cute little bark!!
Foster Update: August 7, 2020
Brinkley has good news and bad news to share. The good news is that her scheduled dental surgery was moved up twice and was done on Wednesday, August 5. She had 6 extractions leaving her with 27 newly cleaned and polished toofers, not bad for an 8 year old pug. Surgery day was pretty rough but she’s now back to her normal happy self and relishing her soft food as her mouth recovers. Take a look at the video of her quietly but eagerly waiting for her dinner (while her foster brother whines), coming when called and having a post-dinner play (obviously her mouth isn’t that sore!). Also a couple of photos of her "stoned" after surgery.
The bad news is that her pre-surgery blood work revealed an elevated creatinine reading (about double January’s level) which can mean the kidneys aren't working well. To learn more, the vet recommended a urine sample, which they analyzed pre-surgery and found a high level of red blood cells in her urine. So while she was recovering from the dental, they performed a guided ultrasound and found a stone which could be causing irritation and hence the blood. They sent the sample out for a Culture & Sensitivity and found there was no infection. Unfortunately they neglected to measure or record the urinary pH so we don’t have the usual clue as to whether the stone is struvite or calcium oxalate. The recommendation is that we wait until she has finished her Metacam and then redo the urinalysis. As for the elevated creatinine, I was told today that their machine has been recording high creatinine in a number of recent tests. They have recalibrated the machine and we will retest once all the drugs are out of her system. Our mystery girl will stay put in her foster home until this all gets resolved.
In the meantime, she continues to be a low maintenance sweetheart who has excellent name and whistle recall. Her potty manners are exceptional; even when she had post surgery diarrhea, she let me know she had to go outside and was clearly distressed at the thought she wouldn’t make it (she did). She loves attention and hates her foster brother getting his share, nudging him out of the way and getting in between him and the attention giver. She stays very close to us and him, and gives hugs and kisses but doesn’t like to be held for cuddles too long.
Foster Update: July 10, 2020
On June 24th Brinkley got the all-clear from the eye specialist and is mightily happy to not have to wear the Cone of Shame any more, as are we of the bruised shins. She will, however, require prescription eye drops (currently Tacrolimus) twice a day for life to control pigmentary keratitis. (For a description see https://vcahospitals.com/know-your-pet/pigmentary-keratitis). These drops have to be ordered approximately monthly as they expire after 28 days, at a cost of about $90 each time. Potential adopters should be aware of this requirement. She has learned to be tolerant about getting the eye drops and sits still while I administer them. That’s progress!
The next step is Brinkley’s dental which has been delayed because of the clinic’s Covid rescheduling backlog and is to take place on September 9th. She will be microchipped while under anaesthetic. Assuming the dental goes well and there are no new health developments, she should be ready for adoption shortly thereafter.
My only concern with Brinkley is that she doesn’t drink very much water and I’d like her to urinate more to avoid another urinary infection, so I make sure she gets a lot of water with her meals.
She’s a good sleeper both in her dog bed during the day and in Big Bed at night. After her last potty break of the evening, a couple of pre-bed treats and a play of tug and shake, she settles down and starts snoring quickly. It amazes me how quickly she falls asleep and how quickly she wakes up. After breakfast, she likes to rough-house with me in the recliner for a couple of minutes and then wants down to shake a big stuffie which is almost as big as her. That done, she settles down for a snooze until I move. Then she follows wherever I go. After dinner, she plays quietly beside me with her toys and snoozes while I watch TV or work on the laptop. Unless, that is, there’s lots of activity going on, and then she wants to be part of it. She’s very involved in whatever is happening.
In view of the heat and her propensity for toe infections due to the placement of her two front outer toes, we have stopped regular walkies and prefer her to get exercise in the house and backyard. She and the resident dog love to chase and play-fight and she’s a whiz at running up the stairs. And of course following me around all day would puts clicks on a pedometer.
Brinkley continues to be a delight. She has a strong but happy personality (she’s definitely the boss around here) and just loves people. She is a bit of a toy hog and prefers to play with and lick the resident dog’s preferred little greeb stuffie. I bought her one almost identical but still she prefers his, probably to bug him. She can be easily redirected to her own toys which she also enjoys, but it won’t be long before she has stolen his back.
She also enjoys our new outdoor fishpond, often sticking her head through the fence bars to watch the fish swimming. She is less interested in the birds, squirrels and chipmunks unless the resident dog barks and chases after them, at which time she will follow suit with her silly little bark. Other than then and first thing (early) in the morning when excited to get breakfast, she’s a quiet girl eager to please.
Foster Update: June 10, 2020
Well, last time I blogged to you was the lull before the storm. Lots has happened in the past month.
On May 26th I gave Joan Rivers a run for her money – an eyelid tuck on BOTH eyes (fancy name is medial canthoplasty). Now my eyelashes can’t roll inwards and scratch my corneas. The doctor has made me wear the Cone of Shame for 15 days and nights so far and I hate it. I’m never supposed to take it off but foster mom takes it off me so I can eat and watches me like a hawk. It also gives her a chance to really clean it. I’ve learned to navigate the outside stairs and even the doggy steps to Big Bed but the folks won’t let me do the inside stairs because they’re kind of steep. I’ve learned that it is a pretty good shovel for the top soil that foster dad put on the back lawn.
I went back today for a second check-up and the doctor said that the operation went really well but since there was slight tear (tare, not teer) in one of the sutures the first week, he wants me to wear the cone for another 5 days – bummer. Maybe foster mom will lighten up and give me some treats to celebrate its removal. We’re going back in two weeks for hopefully the final check-up. I’m OK with the car rides even though they take a LONG time.
Some really good news. I was supposed to have my toe amputated at the same time as the surgery, but after it had healed from the infection and the surgeon had a look at it, she claimed it was beautiful (I knew that!) and didn’t have to come off. I just have to keep it longer than the other nails so that it grows longer than the toe and doesn’t rub and cause another sore.
I overheard the folks talking about me having to go to the dentist because I’ve got something called plaque but they think I need a break before any more drama. In the meantime, it’s a pretty nice life here even though I can’t really play with my foster brother because of this stupid cone. So I think I’ll have a nap now [editor’s note: turn the volume up on Brinkley' s newest video!].
Foster Update: May 7, 2020
Brinkley here catching you up on my news, not that there’s much exciting going on right now. The folks are home all the time so I don’t get to snooze as much as normal because I have to follow them whenever they move. Foster mom finally broke down a few weeks ago and gave us all a tiny piece of cucumber she had left over when making what she calls a salad, so now I know there could be good things going on in the kitchen. I check EVERY time either of them goes into that room, just in case. Only had a couple of goodies since, but you never know.
Foster mom’s pretty sparing with the treats so I have to seize every possible opportunity. She says I’m down to a really good weight so she’s eased up a little more on my meal portions, but I’d still like more treats. I’ve learned that if I sing in bed for my breakfast, Mom eventually lets us all get up … even if it’s before the sun comes up. My big old foster brother helps because he usually wakes everyone up with his coughing and needs to go outside for a poop right away. Mom doesn’t seem to be at her best before 6:00 a.m. and usually makes us go back to the Big Bed.
Another thing that interrupts my snoozing is foster mom constantly putting drops in my eyes to get the goop out. She mentioned I have to have an operation for that, but not for a while. So in the meantime, she pokes and prods and puts in drops and ointment several times a day. I think she does it because she doesn’t have anything else to do right now. I have learned that if I sit still while she does this, it’s over quickly and saves me from rubbing my face on the carpet or sheets. I’ve learned the same about nail trims - just lie back and think of treats. I’m very clever at learning stuff. I know because my foster dad is always telling me I’m smart. He also tells me all the time how beautiful I am. I know, but it’s nice to hear it. Mom says she loves the little white “epaulets” on my shoulders. I think they both love me. Who wouldn’t?
We got a new storm door in the kitchen and I like to sit in the sun that streams through the window but little foster brother likes to hog it all and I have to make do. I get him back, though, by pinching his favorite (and only) toy - a lime green bone stuffy. Before this pandemic thing, Mom went out and bought me my own bone stuffie that looks a lot like his, but it’s more fun to steal his and listen to him whine. Mom usually takes it away from me, though, and gives me a couple of different toys.
Now that the weather is nicer, we can spend more time in the small backyard. Little brother and I sometimes play chase and play fight. A couple of times the grandchildren have come over to have a social-distance BBQ. It smells SOOO good. I love it when they come over because they make a fuss of me and play but they wear me out and I have to have a snooze after; so does Mom so I get a break from her checking my eyes.
Other than that, nothing else to report. My toe is still OK. Life is good.
Foster Update: April 11, 2020
Not much news in Brinkley-land. Her planned surgeries have been postponed due to the coronavirus cut-backs and she is not suffering in the meantime. Her toe infection has cleared up and we won’t trim the nail for a while to prevent a recurrence. We are putting eye lube/drops to help mitigate dry eye. She continues to lose weight and actually has a waist now. The panting has stopped … but the soft snoring hasn’t - lol. It’s actually quite soothing.
Brinkley has been learning a bad habit from my dogs – barking. But only first thing in the morning when they all want their breakfast. She stands on the end of the bed and emits this frenzied funny little yapping sound that leaves me in no doubt that I must get up and feed them. Then she scurries down the stairs for her meal. Afterwards she goes out for her pottying and runs back in, happy as a clam. She is fully engaged in all we do and loves to be close to her humans.
Foster Update - March 12, 2020
Almost ten weeks into foster care, Brinkley has made great progress on her weight reduction. At 20.5 lb (9.3 kg), she is now a good candidate for her medial canthoplasty surgery which was scheduled for April 7th but was postponed due to COVID19.
Unfortunately, she has developed another infection in her wonky left outside toe where the toenail rubs on it. The vet has determined the best course of action is to amputate that misplaced toe at the same time as her eye surgery. The amputation will be quick to heal and will not affect her gait. Having gone through a similar amputation with another of our dogs, I agree this is a good plan. Today she is starting another course of antibiotics which will continue until her surgery date.
Brinkley’s true personality is shining through. She’s strong-willed but easy to get along with. She gets quite jealous when the resident dogs cozy up to her foster mom and pushes them out of the way. Sometimes this escalates into play fighting but there is no nasty in her. Oddly enough, she’s not much of a cuddler, and once she’s had a quick hug, is anxious to get back on the ground where she stays close to her people and toys. She continues to be clean in the house and a good sleeper in Big Bed.
Foster Update - February 28, 2020
Brinkley continues to be a delight. She seems to be constantly happy, always eager to have belly rubs and playtime. When not enthusiastically playing with our resident chihuahua mix or by herself with toys, she plops herself down by my side in whichever room I'm in. She sleeps well in the Big Bed with foster mom and the other dogs and is learning that bedtime is for sleeping, not playing. She still pants heavily, particularly when excited, but the volume and amount has decreased substantially and I am less concerned now that the vet has confirmed her heart is strong. She continues to be clean in the house.
In late January we noticed her limping and lifting her left paw. She had previously done this once in a while on short walks but we attributed it to the fact that she was tired and/or was feeling the cold. However, when we noticed the limp continued indoors and her outer toe became swollen and clearly painful, we took her to the vet on January 31 who put her on Metacam (anti-inflammatory and pain med) and an antibiotic (for the infection). On February 2 we soaked her foot in warm water and pus immediately came out. A couple of hours later we soaked her foot again and out came some black exudate which may have signalled a strep or staph infection or yeast. It left quite a hole in her paw! The swelling has largely gone down since then. Today, February 6th, we went back to the vet for a recheck and distemper/parvo vaccination. The paw is much better but since she occasionally licks it, especially at night, she has been given another week of antibiotics and we need to stop her licking in order for it to scab over and heal completely.
Obviously during the last week and a half, walkies have been out of the question so our efforts at weight loss (hers and mine!) have been hampered. Nevertheless, she is doing well. How well, I'm not sure as the scales have not been consistent but we estimate she has lost about 2 lbs and needs to lose at least 4 more. When gets close to her target weight, we'll schedule her eye surgery and dental.
In the meantime, we really enjoy her company.
Introduction - January 24, 2020
Meet lovely Brinkley who is a 7-year-old spayed female pug who came into rescue through no fault of her own. She is a happy, affectionate, and playful individual who gets on well with both people and the other dogs and loves to chew and squeak her toys. She has very good manners and does her business very efficiently, letting you know very firmly when she wants to come back inside the house. She is very content, including when crated (so the amorous boys don't bother her), and travels well in the car. In short, she is perfect.
Medically, however, she has a few issues. She came into rescue last weekend with a corneal ulcer which has now healed. The eye specialist attributed it to entropion, a condition not uncommon in pugs, where the eyelid/lashes roll inward and scratch the cornea. She will require medial canthoplasty where the opening of the eyes will be surgically made smaller to prevent this inward rolling. Brinkley also has a fair bit of pigmentary keratitis and an indication of dry eye (keratoconjunctivitis sicca), both common problems in pug eyes. She has been prescribed Tacrolimus drops (twice daily) which she will need for life and which should help with the dry eye and slow the progression of the PK.
Brinkley's previous diagnosis of luxating patellas ("trick knees"), a condition where the kneecap dislocates and moves out of the joint, was confirmed. Her condition is not severe in either leg and no action is required.
At her first vet appointment, Brinkley had a rabies shot and a complete checkup. She will need a distemper/parvovirus vaccination in a few weeks. Her blood results came back normal and she tested negative for Lyme disease, heartworm, ehrlichia, anaplasma and fecal parasites. Unfortunately her urinalysis showed up some struvites crystals and an elevated pH so we will be working on increasing the acidity of her urine in the next few days. There is some tartar on her teeth so a dental cleaning is in her future. Unfortunately at her present weight, Brinkley is not a good candidate for her needed eye and dental surgery so we will be working to get some weight off. Weight loss will also ease her breathing and reduce the strain on her knees.
Brinkley will be in foster care for quite some time to accomplish all these objectives but will eventually make a lovely addition to someone's family. In the meantime we are delighted she is staying with us.