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Poor Tonka and poor you - sounds like the irresistible force meeting the immovable object, with a huge amount of pain and frustration and guilt and all made worse by nicotine withdrawal. But you and Tonka have been friends for so many years, and the human half of the partnership has to be the one to say sorry and find a way out of the impasse. It usually means backing up a bit, I've found, and making space for the other party to have their say. No doubt Tonka is stiff and sore, with diminishing eyesight and hearing, all of which make cuddles etc worrisome. And I rather agree with those who say feed him what he wants as long as it is affordable - the benefits of a healthier food are pretty marginal at his age. But I wish I was close enough to pour you a stiff whisky, stay for a conversation long enough to leave you laughing, and take Tonka for a few days to give you a breather. Are you sleeping enough? And don't ignore the suggestion of antidepressants - a short course can strengthen that wobbly bridge across the dark places.
 

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Countryboy, your rant made my day! Misery surely does love company. Sailor is 14.5 years old and he, too likes to turn his nose up at his food. The dogs get fed twice a day, and (now this is really cheap of me) what Sailor does not eat becomes the Jack Russell's next meal. If he leaves a lot, then Wilson gets some, too. Neither of those boys are picky. Sailor did however, wander around in my bedroom and find a sealed bag of minnows which he devoured after chewing through the heavy plastic bag. Sailor did not become a "break in" artist until after he turned 10, and yes, I had medical tests done on him. Nothing physical wrong with the boy. He, also likes to stand outside contemplating life until the other dogs are done pottying , and when I open the door to let them in... Sailor runs as far as he can and begins his walking poop. I swear he drops a plopper every five feet for thirty feet. Then, he has to find the right spot to stand like a horse and whiz... followed by a ten minute drink of water. Argh, he just emptied his tank, why is he filling it up again?? Good thing I love that rotten dog.
 

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Discussion Starter #23
Haha, Charmed... staring into infinity and then a 30 yard poop. That's Tonka too.

He's never been cuddly, can't stand people touching him. I'm sure his mental world includes nobody but him. The first time I met him he paid noooo attention to Peter and I in the compound. Didn't even look at us. But went exploring for grass to eat along the fence. Completely oblivious to humans.

COMPLETELY unreliable offleash. He'll take off at the slightest oppourtunity. Even after ten years together, this dog is an annoying, headstrong jerk.

As far as the cancer goes, we discovered a T1 High Grade tumour in the bladder. It came with a yellow, glistening 'stone', the size and shape of a short pencil. It looked like something from Space Odyssey. Quite interesting, actually.

But I've got a good, young, oncological urologist who took that out with a Green Light Laser Reduction around about Xmas. THEN!... a blood clot let go and blocked me up for two days. That was not fun! o_O

But once we got that fixed a Cystoscopy a couple of weeks ago. shows me clear of the tumour.
 

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Gracie's last year was a parade of floor nuggets. I could handle it just fine. My husband's patience, on the other hand, was quicker to wear thin. I spent as much energy protecting him from the poop as I spent cleaning up the poop, and these stories of commiseration sure take me back to those hard, bittersweet days. I'd repeat them again in a second.

Countryboy, I'm so sorry about this awful luck you've had. Thanks for being so honest about it and giving your poodle pals the chance to support you and Tonka.
 

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Countryboy, I lost my old dude last month and for the last two years, he was much like Tonka and Gracie and Sailor in this thread. I would get frustrated with his demand barking for me to help him up, his refusal to eat anything but peanut butter sandwiches, then his refusal to eat peanut butter sandwiches because SURPRISE, “my favorite food is chicken and homemade bread now, didn’t you know?” He consumed a pharmacy’s worth of medicine that cost an arm and a leg. I shipped him Chinese herbs FROM CHINA regularly. At the time it was all so much, so exhausting, but I promise you that when Tonka is gone you will laugh about the horrible haircut and smile about the fact that it’s Tonka’s world and you’re just living in it. It might sound trite, but try to stop and think about what you’re doing for Tonka - the best you can.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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It came with a yellow, glistening 'stone', the size and shape of a short pencil. It looked like something from Space Odyssey.
Now that set off an interesting train of thought. Not an explanation for the monolith that had previously occurred to me, I have to say, and set me wondering, with slightly horrified fascination, what kind of civilisation might grow up with CB's bladder stone at the centre of its creation myth!

Dr McConnell recently blogged on feeling we don't much like our dogs at the moment: Love, but not Like? Like, but not Love? Feelings are Messy. - The Other End of the Leash Their may be comfort in knowing you are not alone.
 

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I've had him for just over ten years and he's always been almost impossible to feed. No way for plain kibble... not a chance. Mixed with good stuff, ya... he'll eat that... for a while, 'til he gets used to it.

Then he gets fussy again and refuses it. Then I pick something better to mix with the kibble. Then he eats again... for a while.
It's ALWAYS got to be something better, not back to something he used to like.

Lately he's been eating Beneful (of all kibbles! :O) mixed with half a can of bacon and cheese bits in stew. But one vet (that I accidentally saw last week) was ragging on my for the Beneful so I picked up a small bag of Acana Puppy Food... for the extra protein.

Added water to a cup of the Acana, and 1/4 pound of browned hamburger and he refused it. It's been sitting behind me for three days... it stinks... and he's still not eating it.

I will not replace it. He'll eat it or starve.
I would try raw or homemade cooked food and alternate proteins every 3 mos or so. Raw and homemade tend to be quite palatable for dogs and protein rotation is just pure wisdom. Extruded kibble was created in late 1950’s. What did people do before then? They fed them real food and dogs lived longer and were healthier. You could also try raw goats milk and homemade bone broth. Ultra oil on top of food makes it quite tasty and it’s good for their skin.
 

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Extruded kibble was created in late 1950’s. What did people do before then? They fed them real food and dogs lived longer and were healthier.
I've always wondered about this, and finally looked it up: "Dog life expectancy has doubled in the past 4 decades."

From a very interesting article:


At 16 years old, I believe Tonka has earned whatever supper makes him (and Countryboy!) happy. :)
 

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Countryboy! Where are you? It says Ontario, but not where. That is a very big area. I live in Marquette in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, so depending on where you are I may be within 3 1/2 hours. With Covid I am stir crazy and might be willing to travel and take Tonka for a vacation to give you a break. Let me know!
My Spoo basically loves everyone, and it could be fun for all of us:)
 

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Discussion Starter #32
Aha, Kontiki... a Yooper! :) ....hope you enjoyed our rain just now....
Compared to you I'm in The Great White South. Fourty miles North of Toronto. But further South than the UP.
Tonka's pretty chill at the moment. Calmness reigns for now...
 

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Aha, Kontiki... a Yooper! :) ....hope you enjoyed our rain just now....
Compared to you I'm in The Great White South. Fourty miles North of Toronto. But further South than the UP.
Tonka's pretty chill at the moment. Calmness reigns for now...
That's my old stomping grounds, Countryboy. If ever you get a chance, please give Georgian Bay a big ol' kiss from me. Missing it like crazy these days.

Happy to hear you and Tonka are getting along again.
 

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Countryboy, .... Yes, a Yooper! But not born here, 'only' here since 1987, so not sure I can totally claim it:) I am going absolutely stir crazy with COVID, and am thinking about camping in my SUV. I used to camp in tents, but at 74 I am having a hard time getting up off of the ground, so I am measuring my SUV for a bed!

Shall I head that way?
 

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Discussion Starter #35
...don't aSk me aboUt my typing Style, my keyboard connectionS mUSt be wrecked...

i've got friendS in a rented cottage in tobermory right now. a bUnch of girlS from the toronto bombardier plant taking their holidayS together. i'd love to be on the bay right now bUt that woUld be a Scary place to be. lol

yoU croSSing the border woUld be qUite a feat theSe dayS. it SUrely iS a great time for viSiting bUt 'merkinS are being tUrned away from canada... not allowed to croSS the border.
 

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Oh groan... yes, and I don't blame Canada for not letting USians in. Here in the UP we have little COVID and really don't even want people from downstate, or other states coming here and bringing it with them.
 

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Cancer free, smoke free, Covid free AND Canadian! Take the wins! Vary the toppers and pitch after a day.
 

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I've always wondered about this, and finally looked it up: "Dog life expectancy has doubled in the past 4 decades."

From a very interesting article:


At 16 years old, I believe Tonka has earned whatever supper makes him (and Countryboy!) happy. :)
I’d be interested in seeing an actual research study on dog life expectancy these days. Science magazine is not very convincing.
 
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