Issue XXIV – “I’m Thankful for My Health”
Last time we spoke, I was all hopped up on sugar from Halloween! Well, a lot of time has passed since then and now I’m full of turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, and pumpkin pie! Not really though, Mom wouldn’t let me have any of the human Halloween or Thanksgiving treats. You know how she is, all worried about things like obesity, diabetes, pancreatitis and whatnot! But, seriously, it’s a good thing that she is looking out for my health and well being, because if I was in charge, I surely would gorge myself on delicious human foods and probably land myself in the hospital with a very serious illness. She of course didn’t forget about me over the fall holidays though and made me my very own special pumpkin pupcakes to enjoy, complete with peanut butter-yogurt frosting, just like the pilgrims ate at the First Thanksgiving! Mmm mmm good!
I love this time of year though, holidays mean food and family. I love both! We have been very fortunate with this weather too! I remember last year at this time, we had endured a grueling 7 days of snow, totaling nearly 8 feet! I was just a baby then, which Mom says is a good thing because I was able to walk on top of the heavy wet snow, rather than sink into it and get lost like I would if we had that much snow this year. I would certainly sink because I gained nearly 100lb in the past year!
I had my 1 year check-up with Mom at work this month. On December 23, 2014, which is when I had my last “puppy check-up” and vaccines, I weighed in at 45lb. This year, on December 4 when we did my first “big boy check-up,” I tipped the scales at 142.8lb! Do you know anyone else who is happy about gaining nearly 100lb in a year?!? Mom says that it was good for me though and that she is happy with my growth over the past year. She even says that I’m on the small side for my breed, can you believe it, me, small? I guess maybe compared to my fellow English Mastiffs, but she is pleased because I am what she calls a “healthy lean.” She says it’s important to maintain a nice waist and tuck under my belly and that she should be able to feel my ribs nice and easy when she pets me. Check, check, and check!
In addition to a thorough physical examination, Mom collected blood and urine samples to run what she called “wellness blood work” to make sure that all my insides are working as good as my outside is looking! She also ran a heartworm test, which is another blood test that she said we have to do once every year to make sure that I don’t have that pesky disease that is transmitted by infected mosquitoes. Mom keeps me on heartworm prevention year-round, so it shouldn’t be a problem, but she says it’s still important to test for product failure or in case she slips on the job and forgets to give me my dose on time. You know, she’s only human!
All my blood work checked out good and my heartworm test was negative, which is all wonderful news! She also collected a stool sample to check for any annoying intestinal parasites I may have picked up along the way. I produce a lot of poop, so it was easy to collect a good sample! I’m all clear for worms too, so you can accept my kisses without worry! Basically Mom gave me an A+ on my check up! She was so proud.
In addition to the exam, wellness blood work, heartworm test, and fecal flotation testing, I also had my annual vaccinations. These vaccinations included my first 3-year Rabies vaccine, my first 3-year Distemper-Parvo virus vaccine, and my annual Leptospirosis and Bordetella (Kennel Cough) boosters. All these vaccines help to keep me safe and healthy from common and sometimes life threatening diseases that are ubiquitous in the environment. I am so lucky to have my Mom taking such good care of me and always looking out for my best interests. You guys are all lucky to have her and the rest of the staff veterinarians at Sheridan Animal Hospital to do the same for you too!