Sunday, August 17, 2008

Ballou's Yard

Well it finally happened for Ballou and his crew - grass! Their yard was just an empty bunch of dirt for quite a while. We laid sod about 2-3 weeks ago now and added some other plants too. It's all really taken off and is doing well - now we just have to convince the cats (except Hank) that it's okay to walk on - so far everyone else still goes around it! If you click on the picture above to enlarge it, you can find Marci and Waldo in the background, behind their new lawn!

A Leo Update

I realized it's been a little while since posting a Leo update ~ he's doing great! As you can see, his hair is growing in nicely. We introduced him to the cats living in the Cabana, which has the largest yard and sleeping area, and he's doing very well with the other cats. He really enjoys playing in the tall grasses, but is sure to never miss a meal!

Meet Puddin' Pig

Miss Puddin' Pig came to us around July 4 ~ it's taken some time to gain her trust for her photo opportunity! "Piggie" (I know, what an original nickname!) came to us through a referral from the SD Herpetological Society. A strange connection, true, but Piggie was quickly becoming homeless due to divorce. As an older and not well-socialized pig, we all knew that her chance to find a home at the county shelter was slim-to-none.

So, we helped convince her to load in a trailer, and home with us she came. The goats were afraid of her for the first couple of weeks, but have now decided she's okay. She lives next to the goat pasture so she has them for company. She's lost a little weight since she's been here, but probably won't get to the point to play in their pasture since it's on a hillside. We're working to find her a good quality senior diet and joint supplements to keep her in the best of health. As we re-fence the goat pasture this winter, her pen will be redone and expanded too. In the meantime, she's enjoying mudbaths and strawberries, the perfect summer for a pig!

Monday, August 11, 2008

Meet Liberty!

Sweet Liberty (Libby to her friends!) came to us last Wednesday from the county animal shelter. She was turned in by her owner, and unfortunately, due to her medical problems, was set to be euthanized. An animal turned in by his or her owner doesn't get the 'extra' time that a stray does when it enters the shelter.

As it turns out, Liberty does have some arthritis and some eye problems. She also has some chronic skin issues around her eyes and ears too. These are all problems noted also by the shelter staff. What went unnoticed was the strong odor coming from her mouth. Now, I cleaned her eyes, her ears, and removed tarter from her teeth and gave her a bath. Yet the odor remained.

Off to work she went with me today, where we could anesthetize her and get a closer look at her mouth. It turns out that she does have a limited range of motion in her jaw. And then there's the huge clump of foxtails that were lodged behind her last molar ~ ah, the cause of the smell! We removed those and cleaned out her mouth, and our internist Dr. Slusser also made a keen observation as he was looking at her mouth - her eye bulged out as he opened her jaw - a tell-tale sign of a retrobulbar mass, a tumor located behind her eye ~ and the big surprise of the day!

Off to Dr. Steele, the opthamologist at Eye Clinic for Animals, where the area behind her eye and the area behind her molar were explored. We didn't find anymore foxtails, and at this point she will be on a pretty hefty steroid dose and major antibiotics for the next week; then we'll recheck and regroup. Hopefully, the growth is related to a chronic problem from the foxtails, and when it goes away, so will the restricted jaw movement.

Liberty has a 'black eye' tonight after her procedure today. She ate pretty well tonight and is snoozing away! Please keep your fingers crossed for this sweetheart!