A friend sent me some links to poodle breeders as she knows about my quest to find the perfect dog. While browsing them, I came across a very valuable blog post from ParrisHill Standard Poodles in New Jersey relating how they nearly lost a valuable poodle to xylitol poisoning. Click the link for details:
In a later post they warn that Rescue Remedy, the popular Bach Flower essence, which they previously used on their dogs, now contains Xylitol. Please pass the word to all the pet owners you know. Xylitol should join chocolate, grapes and raisins on the list of foods that are deadly to dogs.
Reading this post lead me to reminiscing about Joshua, who is never far from my thoughts. As a puppy he suddenly began having seizures. Our vet recommended putting him on phenobarbitol for the rest of his life. Had we followed this advice he would likely have been lethargic and it certainly would have shortened his life. Since they were never severe, lasting less than half an hour and only occurred once or twice a month, we opted to forego drugs. A few months later, quite by accident, we discovered that his monthly heartworm medication was a contributing factor. Upon researching, I learned that this was not uncommon. We stopped the heartworm meds and the seizures became infrequent, perhaps once or twice a year, and later they ceased entirely.
Annual checkups were always “fun” as the vet warned of the dangers of heartworm and we pointed out the cure was worse than the malady. We could never convince him that there was a connection, but in our minds it was incontrovertible. Eventually he stopped bringing it up, much to our relief.
After a few years of no seizures, there was one more episode. During a visit from my parents Joshua suddenly seized. By this time I had begun using Dynamite products and had a bottle of Relax on hand. I liberally spritzed Joshua’s face and got as much in his mouth as possible. Less than five minutes later the seizure stopped entirely never going to the “glazed-eye stage,” as I used to call it.
Much later that night my mother awoke having a panic attack, which she had from time to time. Normally she would have to pack up and immediately head home (a 10+ hour trip). This time having witnessed Joshua’s recovery she grabbed the bottle of Tranquil (similar to Relax) and liberally sprayed herself. Within minutes the attack passed and she was able to go back to sleep.
When she related the story to me the next day I was left to ponder the amazing “coincidence” that Joshua had a seizure out of the blue, after several years of having none, just when my mother was here to witness it and the affects of Relax. I was convinced it was not a coincidence, which was confirmed for me by an existential friend. She said that sometimes animals, particularly dogs, will “volunteer” themselves as examples in order to help humans. That made total sense to me, and was absolutely something Joshua with his generou heart would do, but for many people must be filed under the category of “things that make you go hmmm…”